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Start/Bench List - Week 12
Whitney Walters
November 24, 2005
Thu 12:30 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM  
Thu 4:15 PM CAR at BUF SD at WAS MIA at OAK Mon 9 PM  
  CLE at MIN STL at HOU NYG at SEA (times ET)  
    Player List by Position
Start/Bench Codes (SBC) Early Injury Status
S1: Must start, 1st string. X: No start or bench indications / Could go either way. (O): Out    (D): Doubtful
S2: Solid starter, 2nd string. B: Bench 'em / Too much risk. (Q): Questionable
U: Upside player / Possible sleeper. (P): Probable
Atlanta (6-4) at Detroit (4-6) Back to top
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Michael Vick S2

Vick's second career 300 yard game last week boosts his three week average to about 250 YPG through the air. Easily his best three game stretch. His young WR's are healthy and improving and the killer running game keeps defenses honest. It's a good bet that Vick will have another solid game against the struggling Lions.

RB Warrick Dunn S2

As expected, with Duckett back in the mix Dunn's touches have decreased and he's not getting any action around the goal-line. But he's still averaging over 100 total YPG and is a threat catching passes out of the backfield. With the injuries to the Detroit LB corps look for Atlanta to work Dunn on the edges with a few extra screens.

RB T.J. Duckett X

Duckett looks back to full speed now and has put up over 50 yards rushing in each of the past two games. He's also getting the call at the goal-line. A borderline starter most weeks for those that need help at RB due to injury. Carries more value in TD-only leagues.

WR Michael Jenkins X Returned with a bit of a bang last week after missing two games due to an ankle injury. His 5-for-69, 1 TD effort was a career best. Jenkins was slated to be the star in the Falcon passing game this season. His size makes him a favorable red-zone target for Vick. As the Falcon passing game improves, so will Jenkins' fantasy value.
WR Roddy White X

The talented and highly touted rookie was the second Atlanta WR to have a 100-yard game this season. Much of that was on a single 54 yard catch. White is still very raw and will take a back seat to Jenkins and Finneran most weeks.

WR Brian Finneran X

With Jenkins back and White improving look for Finneran to slide back into a more comfortable 3-4 catch possession receiver role.

TE Alge Crumpler S2 When the Falcon passing game struggles you can typically count on Crumpler to produce. His value only increases when Vick and the passing attack begin to click some, which has been the case over the past three games.
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Joey Harrington B

The Lions don't plan on announcing their starting QB until Thursday morning. It will likely be Harrington, but you never know as both are seeing time with the first team in practice. Don't waste your Thanksgiving morning waiting for this decision.

RB Kevin Jones S2

Over the past three games Jones has 7, 14 and 12 carries. The reluctance to pound one of the more talented young runners in this league at least 20 times a game is beyond me. If Jones gets 20 touches on Thursday he'll have a 100-yard game, easily. The Falcons just can't seem to stop the run. Now if only the Lions' coaches can realize that.

WR Roy Williams S2

Healthy and showing us the talent that would place him on the top of most fantasy draft boards on a team with a decent QB. He should have no problem this week matched up against the Falcon corners as Webster and Hall are undersized and continue to struggle.

WR Mike Williams B

The rookie is still struggling with the sprained foot and won't likely get on the field this week.

WR Charles Rogers X

Rogers seemed to shake off the season-long funk last week. He caught all four balls that came his way. Will be somewhat productive in this matchup against the struggling Falcon secondary.

WR Scottie Vines B

With Rogers and Williams back, Vines looks to be the odd man out. Should stay active as the team's #3 WR, but has limited fantasy value now.

TE Marcus Pollard U

Pollard had one of his 5-yard games last week (he's had three this season). But he remains active in the passing game. The improved play of Williams and Rogers helps open up the middle of the field for Pollard.

Denver (8-2) at Dallas (7-3) Back to top
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jake Plummer X

Efficient isn't exactly how you'd like to hear your fantasy quarterback described, but that about sums it up for Plummer. He's thrown for more than 250 yards only three times this season and for more than a single touchdown only three times as well. Nothing about this matchup indicates much deviation from efficiency for Plummer Thursday.

RB Mike Anderson S2

Dallas is a strong defense and the going won't be easy for Anderson on Thanksgiving. On the plus side is the fact that Bell may sit this one out due to the chest injury he suffered on Sunday. At a minimum he'll be limited, meaning Anderson will carry the load.

RB Tatum Bell (Q) B

Bell suffered a chest injury last week that has a good chance of keeping him out of this game due to the short week. Likely a game-time decision for the Dallas area native.

WR Rod Smith S2

Smith has been solid and consistent all season and Plummer seems to find him regardless of situation or matchup. He faces a difficult matchup this week with corners Henry (back from injury) and Newman. Look for an average game which makes him a borderline starter this week.

WR Ashley Lelie S2

Lelie continues to make just enough long plays down field to maintain his fantasy value. He hasn't scored a touchdown since week five so it's a good time for another if he can get behind cornerbacks Henry and Newman.

TE Jeb Putzier (P) B

The tight end just isn't a big part of the passing schemes this year in Denver. Putzier makes a few key catches each week but that's about it.

Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Drew Bledsoe X

The Cowboys continue to ask little of Bledsoe, and over the past four games that's exactly what fantasy owners have gotten. His top performance in that span is week 8's 220 yard, single TD effort. Last week's 110 yard, zero TD performance was the bottom. Don't expect much more than that week eight effort on Thursday against the very stingy Denver defense.

RB Julius Jones X

Jones looks to be back to full speed and his 21 carries last week were the most he's had since week four. Look for more of the same on Thursday as the Cowboys will run the ball often to test a Broncos defense that's #2 against the run but also ranks dead last in attempts against (only 20 per game). They will try to wear Denver down with a solid dose of both Jones and ...

RB Marion Barber X

... Barber, who was able to score on his goal-line rushing attempts last week while Jones was not.

WR Keyshawn Johnson S2

Johnson will be locked up with rookie CB Darrent Williams most of the afternoon and the wily ol' veteran should be able to produce enough to be a borderline starter recommendation this week.

WR Terry Glenn X

Glenn has been the big weapon in the Dallas passing game, but in three of the past four games has 35 yards or fewer. Don't look for that to increase much this week as Denver's Champ Bailey is back to full speed and playing at the top of his game.

TE Jason Witten X

Witten is not having the fantasy season most expected, but he's productive every week. Denver's overall pass defense doesn't rate out very high, but their speed at the linebacker position causes problems for most opposing tight ends.

Baltimore (3-7) at Cincinnati (7-3) Back to top
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Kyle Boller (P) B Boller has been taking a beating since returning, getting sacked 9 times in two games. Cincinnati's ball-hawking secondary will give him problems all afternoon.
RB Jamal Lewis B

And just like that Lewis' days as a Raven are now numbered. Actually it's been coming all season as it's plain to anyone listening and watching that Lewis has mailed in this season. He will likely keep getting 10-12 carries a game, but his fantasy value is non-existent now.

RB Chester Taylor (Q) U

FINALLY! Last week Taylor received 19 carries to Lewis' 13 and as usual was much more productive. It looks like Taylor may start taking a lead role in the running game as the Ravens need to find out what this soon to be free agent is made of. What he'll be made of this week is a nice fantasy surprise against a Bengals defense that's weak against the run.

WR Derrick Mason X

Mason may be the prime WR target in the offense, but the Boller led passing attack provide very few opportunities to be fantasy worthy.

WR Mark Clayton B

The talented rookie matched Mason catch for catch last week and appears to be regaining his health. It's all about the future for Clayton at this point as this season offers little in the way of fantasy value.


Todd Heap


Boller has always looked often to Heap and that has continued since his return two weeks ago. The results aren't going to be spectacular, but will be consistent and of fantasy starter caliber most weeks.

Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Carson Palmer S2

Despite the injury losses on defense, the Ravens are still a top unit. On the road against these Ravens in week 9 Palmer put up 250 yards and two touchdowns. A feat only he and Manning have accomplished against Baltimore. You can expect more of the same this week in Cincinnati.

RB Rudi Johnson (P) S2

There's nothing about this rematch that indicates it will be much different from the week nine game in which Johnson produced over 100 total yards and scored.

RB Chris Perry X

Perry actually out-gained Johnson last week with just 8 carries. His quickness and play-making abilities have become invaluable to the Bengals offense. Perry's lowest output of the season came against the Ravens as safety Will Demps is solid in coverage when he's up in run support.

WR Chad Johnson S2

There aren't many top-flight fantasy stud wide receivers left this season, but Johnson is surely one of them. Every week starter, no questions asked.

WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh S2

The Bengals like to work Houshmandzadeh out of the slot in 3-WR sets where he presents matchup problems for the opposition's nickel cornerbacks. Has developed into a very reliable possession receiver for Palmer.

WR Chris Henry X There isn't much left in the passing game beyond Chad and T.J., but Henry's making the most of his limited looks. He's scored four touchdowns, second most among WR's.

Carolina (7-3) at Buffalo (4-6)

Back to top
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jake Delhomme X

Delhomme has struggled to find the end-zone against his last three opponents, all top pass defensive units. This week he's on the road again facing another in the form of the Bills. He'll produce enough to keep Smith's fantasy value skyrocketing, but don't count on much more than that.

RB Stephen Davis X

The Panthers found no running room last week against the Bears, but of note is the fact that Davis went nowhere (6 yards on 4 carries) and was out-carried by Foster. Davis' fantasy value may start taking a hit as the Panthers will be working Foster into the mix more over the last six games of the season. But if they get down to the 1-yard line you know who will get the call.

RB DeShaun Foster (Q) X

Foster has been given more carries than Davis in two of the past three games. As Davis obviously wears down you can look for that trend to continue. With the added workload Foster would have had some upside this week against the woeful Buffalo run defense. But he's questionable to play due to a knee injury suffered last week.

WR Steve Smith S2

Has the occasional stinker just like any receiver, but Smith has turned into a fantasy monster this season.

WR Keary Colbert B

Try as they might, the Panthers just can't seem to make anything but Delhomme-to-Smith work in the passing game.

TE Kris Mangum (Q) B Mangum is expected to return this week to his role as fantasy irrelevant tight end.
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB J.P. Losman B

The Bills will decide this week to either stay with the struggling Losman or go back to the concussed Kelly Holcomb. Don't bother waiting on the decision. Look somewhere else.

RB Willis McGahee X

McGahee was held in check last week by a stout Chargers defense and having to play from behind early. He received only 10 carries. That pattern may repeat itself this week against an equally stout Carolina run defense.

WR Eric Moulds X

While Moulds took the lead with Holcomb under center, the Losman led offense has less production and it is being spread amongst the receivers more. As long as Losman's the starting QB for the Bills, Moulds' fantasy value is limited regardless of matchup.

WR Lee Evans X

Losman does appear to work the ball to Evans more than Holcomb. He's caught 7 passes for 135 yards in the past two games. The Panthers' secondary is playing well, so don't expect much from Evans this weekend.

WR Josh Reed
Roscoe Parrish

Reed has rarely been a factor this season, catching over two passes only twice. Parrish, an emerging kick return force, will begin pushing for Reed's spot as #3 WR. Neither have any fantasy value.

Chicago (7-3) at Tampa Bay (7-3) Back to top
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Kyle Orton B

Orton's play continues to improve but he isn't going to become a startable fantasy QB any time soon.

RB Thomas Jones S2

Jones looks to be close to full speed and not bothered by the rib injury. The running game is the key to Chicago's offensive success so look for plenty of carries as usual in this matchup. Don't be scared off of Jones this week because of the Tampa defense. They may have once been ranked #1 against the run, but are #8 now and have surrendered over 520 yards and four TD's to opposing backs in the past four games.

RB Adrian Peterson B

Now that Jones is healthy, Peterson is just a backup that will spell Jones for a series or two each game.

WR Muhsin Muhammad X

Muhammad is having about as good a season as can be expected in the very limited Chicago passing attack. He'll have his work cut out for him this week however facing one of the league's top cover corners in Ronde Barber.

WR Justin Gage X

For the first time all season, someone out-caught Muhammad. That someone was Gage. While that may bring some hope to the Chicago passing game, don't count on it bringing much to your fantasy team on the road against the Bucs this week.

TE Desmond Clark


Went catchless last week and has fallen further off the fantasy map.

Tampa Bay
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Chris Simms B

Simms had his worst game last week, completing only 11 passes for 118 yards. The Chicago defense has allowed only a single passing touchdown in the past six games. This is not a good matchup for the young Simms.

RB Carnell Williams S2

His first carry of the game last week was a 30-yarder and he never slowed down. The Chicago defense will stymie the Tampa passing game all day, but their front seven are undersized. Look for the Bucs to run Williams and any other able body right at the heart of the Chicago defense in an attempt to wear them down.

RB Mike Alstott X The goal-line specialist is being called on again. Alstott has scored four touchdowns in the last three games. May get a few extra carries this week, but his fantasy value remains only for TD-only leagues.
WR Michael Clayton X

Clayton got back on the field last week but just doesn't look at all to be the game-breaker he was last season. He has the potential to break out at any moment, but Chicago doesn't look like the matchup where that will happen.

WR Joey Galloway S2

It happened once before, but not since week two had Galloway been shutout. Between that shutout and the one last week Galloway had been a fantasy boon, averaging over 100 yards and a touchdown per game. This will be a smashmouth game with plenty of dinking and dunking in the passing game. The result will be a few key opportunities for Galloway to make a big play down field.

TE Alex Smith B

Smith is coming along slowly. After a few good weeks he disappeared last Sunday, being used as a blocker in 2-TE sets. Odds are good for a repeat this week as the Bucs seek to protect Simms against the Falcon pass rush.

Cleveland (4-6) at Minnesota (5-5) Back to top
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Trent Dilfer B

Dilfer started the season strong, but hasn't been fantasy relevant in weeks. Now it looks like the Browns may start working in rookie QB Charlie Frye. Stay away.

RB Reuben Droughns S2

The Vikings may have boosted their defensive standing by shutting down the woeful Packers running game Monday night, but they can be run on. And run the Browns will.

WR Antonio Bryant X

Bryant has been the most consistent fantasy producer in the Browns passing game. That trend should continue this weekend facing the struggling Vikings secondary.

WR Braylon Edwards U

Minnesota has improved its play some lately, but they still struggle in pass coverage. Edwards is starting to come along in his development and last week the Browns went to him often. His size and athleticism presents matchup problems in the secondary so the Browns would be well served to keep working him the ball.

WR Dennis Northcutt X Has had over 40 yards receiving only twice all season and is losing looks to the emerging Edwards.
TE Aaron Shea
Steve Heiden
B The tight end continues to play a role in the Browns controlled short passing game. That role isn't productive enough to support two tight ends however, even when playing the Vikings this week -- the worst defense against the TE position.
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Brad Johnson X

Johnson is averaging just 150 yards and a touchdown per game since taking over at Minnesota's QB. He has an array of talent in the passing game with his receivers, tight end and backs. The Vikings will continue to run the ball and ask little more of Johnson than to spread the ball around while managing a more ball-control passing attack.

RB Mewelde Moore (P) S2

Moore's back to full speed and carried the load Monday night with 22 carries. You can expect more of the same this week as the Vikings face the Browns and their 28th ranked run defense.

RB Michael Bennett B

Moore's wrist appears healed and Bennett is back to his inconsistent, supporting role in the running game.

WR Nate Burleson
Travis Taylor
Marcus Robinson
Koren Robinson

In the four games that Johnson has led the passing attack no wide receiver has more than four catches in a game. The ball is being spread around very well and a lot of the looks are going to the running backs and tight end. The Vikings continue to win with this approach so you can expect more of the same from here on out. What that means is the WR corps for Minnesota, while talented, is off limits for fantasy owners.

TE Jermaine Wiggins S2

Wiggins is a great pass catcher and has out caught all receivers over the past two weeks. Johnson seems very comfortable going to his round mound at tight end.

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