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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Start/Bench List - Week 13
Whitney Walters
December 1, 2005
Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 1 PM Sun 4 PM Sun 8:30 PM  
ATL at CAR GB at CHI TB at NO ARI at SF OAK at SD  
BUF at MIA HOU at BAL TEN at IND WAS at STL Mon 9 PM  
CIN at PIT JAC at CLE   DEN at KC SEA at PHI  
DAL at NYG MIN at DET   NYJ at NE (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
 
Jacksonville (8-3) at Cleveland (4-7) Back to top
Jacksonville
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB David Garrard U

Garrard gets his chance thanks to the Leftwich injury and is likely the Jags starting QB for the rest of the season. He's not known for his passing, but one thing he'll bring is more running. In the past two seasons he's subbed for Leftwich in three games. In those he's averaged just 150 yards passing and thrown for two TD's. But he's also rushed for 45 yards a game and ran in two scores. He gets a nice matchup this week in Cleveland against a team that doesn't defend well against the pass or run.

RB Fred Taylor (P) B

Taylor has been limited or out for four weeks now and reports are that his ankle is still not close to 100%. He'll practice again this week and try again Sunday. Until he makes another start and is productive he should be avoided.

RB Greg Jones S2

Jones continues to carry the load and get the job done in Taylor's absence. He's scored a touchdown in three of the last four games and this is a great matchup against the league's 28th ranked run defense.

WR Jimmy Smith U

All bets are off now in the passing game with the exception of possibly one receiver - Jimmy Smith. He's reliable and runs solid routes. He also has logged the most practice time with backup Garrard over the past four seasons. If Garrard leans on anyone in the passing game it's going to be Smith.

WR Matt Jones X

As Leftwich progressed this season and began getting comfortable with spreading the ball around in the passing game, both Jones and ...

WR Ernest Wilford X

... Wilford benefited. Until we see what Garrard has to offer both Wilford and Jones are highly suspect fantasy starts, even against the thin Cleveland secondary.

Cleveland
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Trent Dilfer (Q) B

Dilfer hasn't put up multiple touchdowns since week five. Now he has two bum knees that may limit him this week against the very tough Jacksonville defense.

RB Reuben Droughns X

With the exception of a couple of games this season, the Jags have been stout against the run. Droughns has become the Browns' workhorse, averaging 25 touches a game over the past month. Don't expect much in this matchup.

WR Antonio Bryant X

Bryant has been the most consistent fantasy producer in the Browns passing game. His looks are decreasing lately as the team tries to get the ball more to Edwards. With fewer looks it will be difficult for Bryant to produce against the very tough Jacksonville pass defense.

WR Braylon Edwards X

Over the past few weeks the Browns have attempted to work the ball more to their prized rookie. The results have been moderately successful. Moderate is about the best you should expect this week with the Jags' coming to town.

WR Dennis Northcutt X Has scored a touchdown in two of the last four games but has done little else.
TE Steve Heiden U Shea is back in action, but hasn't caught a pass in over a month. Heiden seems to have taken the lead TE role in the Browns controlled short passing game. That role has been good enough for nine catches and 86 yards in the past two games. If Shea remains a non-factor, Heiden could be a nice late-season surprise.
 
Minnesota (6-5) at Detroit (4-7) Back to top
Minnesota
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Brad Johnson X

Johnson had a nice little uptick last week thanks to 3 TD's, but the yardage was still on the low side at 207. Detroit is solid against the pass and the Vikings will continue to run the ball and play a ball-control passing attack.

RB Mewelde Moore S2

Moore took a bit of a back seat to the passing game last week. A repeat isn't likely against the Detroit defense. Look for close to 25 carries in this matchup and a very productive day.

RB Michael Bennett B

Just eight carries in the last two games.

WR Nate Burleson
Travis Taylor
Marcus Robinson
Koren Robinson
X

Marcus Robinson may have had three touchdowns last week (his only three catches), but that doesn't change the fact that the Johnson led passing attack continues to spread the ball around. Until last week no WR had more than four catches in a game, and only one topped that last week (Taylor) with five. Taylor and Koren Robinson are now the starters with the other Robinson and Burleson working in the #3 and #4 roles.

TE Jermaine Wiggins S2

Wiggins is a great pass catcher and has averaged 6 catches for 60 yards over the past three games. Keep him in your lineup.

Detroit
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jeff Garcia (P) B The new head coach named Garcia as the starting quarterback for this week's game. Statistically the Vikings don't look good against the pass, but over the past month they have improved their play greatly. If Garcia can stay healthy he may help get the Detroit offense going forward again, but this week's matchup is not a good one.
RB Kevin Jones (P) S2

This is more of a hopeful recommendation than anything. Jones is by far one of the most talented young running backs in the league. It's been a real shame to see him get just 37 carries over the past four games now that he's obviously healthy. Yeah the offensive line is shaky, but I have faith that if given the rock 25 times this week, Jones will get it going. What have they got to lose? Giving him 9 carries a game sure hasn't been working. It would also help the running game if they threw the ball more than 10 yards down the field.

WR Roy Williams S2

Williams took a back seat to the other receivers last week but was the only one to find the end-zone. The Vikings' secondary has improved their play over the past month so this matchup isn't as easy as it looked a few weeks ago. The passing game is up in the air this week with a new coach calling the plays. Of all the Lions WR's, Roy Williams remains the most sure bet.

WR Mike Williams X

The highly touted rookie had one of his best games of the year last week despite a nagging foot injury. All bets are off in the passing game this week however with a new coach calling the plays. Someone other than Roy Williams will produce in this game, but that could as easily be ...

WR Scottie Vines X

... Vines, not Mike Williams.

WR Charles Rogers B

Since his return he's had one game with four catches and two games with just four yards.

TE Marcus Pollard U

Pollard has been fairly consistent for a middle-of-the-road tight end. Minnesota has a way of making tight ends look great as they've given up about a touchdown a game to them. The Lions may be a mess this week, but Pollard may come out looking good.

 
Tampa Bay (7-4) at New Orleans (3-8) Back to top
Tampa Bay
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Chris Simms X

The production just hasn't been there lately, as Simms has struggled in the past two games, averaging just 160 yards with no touchdowns. Should see an improvement this week facing the struggling Saints, but not enough to make him startable for your fantasy team.

RB Carnell Williams S1

Has his swagger and production back. The past two weeks have produced 200 rushing yards and a touchdown against two strong opponents. Now it's time to bust out with a big game against the Saints - the 29th ranked run defense.

RB Mike Alstott X The goal-line specialist is only getting 6 touches a game, but he's making them count, scoring five touchdowns in the last four games. That kind of production is risky to rely on in performance scoring leagues, but in TD-only scoring it's must start production.
WR Michael Clayton X

Last year's 80-catch season is a faded memory now. Clayton just can't get it going. He went catchless last week and hasn't registered over 50 yards since week two. The Saints are struggling, but one of their strengths on defense is the CB duo of Thomas and McKenzie.

WR Joey Galloway S2

Bounced back from the shutout with his fourth 100-plus yard game last week, putting him over 1,000 for the season. The New Orleans secondary is solid, but with the way the Bucs will be running the ball Sunday, look for Galloway to get deep on them more than once.

TE Alex Smith B

Smith is still good for a couple of catches each week, but he's spending plenty of time blocking in the Bucs' multi-TE formations.

New Orleans
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Aaron Brooks X

Brooks only had 181 yards passing last week, but he found the end-zone three times against a very strong Jets secondary. This week's opponent brings an even better secondary to town, but the Bucs have struggled of late.

RB Antowain Smith
Aaron Stecker
X

The Bucs haven't held an opponent under their season allowed average of 96 rushing yards for three weeks. The Saints will try to keep a balanced attack by running the ball on the tough Tampa defense. Even if they are productive, with the carries being split in the rotation of Smith and Stecker, neither will bring much fantasy value to bear.

WR Joe Horn S2

Oddly, Horn didn't get into the scoring column last week. While the rest of the WR corps has pulled in nine touchdowns, Horn has none since week two. Will that change this weekend? Hard to say. But Horn will find room in the Bucs cover-2 zone schemes as he's very adapt at finding soft spots and seams in zone coverages.

WR Donte' Stallworth   X

Six games, six touchdowns - half of Brooks' total this season. That's quite a streak on a struggling team. Odds are against that streak continuing this week against the very tough Tampa secondary.

WR Az-Zahir Hakim (Q) B

Hakim continued his slide last week by getting hurt and ending with no catches on the day. As long as Horn and Stallworth are healthy, Hakim has no fantasy value.

TE Zack Hilton X

The tight end has always been a part of the passing game for New Orleans and Hilton has been filling in nicely for the injured Conwell. He scored his first touchdown last week but the catches will be harder to come by this week against Tampa.

 
Tennessee (3-8) at Indianapolis (11-1) Back to top
Tennessee
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Steve McNair (Q) X

McNair is looking as mobile as ever this season. That's a good thing since he's going to be pressured by the Colts pass rush all day. He managed only 220 yards and a touchdown in his week four meeting with Indy, but he did have one of his better days running. Expecting more this time around would be very optimistic.

RB Chris Brown (Q) S2

Brown has yet to produce a 100-yard rushing game this season, but last week he did become the first Titan with a 100-yard receiving game. And that's not a fluke. The Titans have been working Brown into the passing game more lately. He had 58 yards receiving the game before. He'll need every touch he can get to produce a fantasy startable game this week facing Indy. Having Henry stealing carries again will not help in that effort.

RB Travis Henry X After getting only a single carry in the three games since his return from suspension, the Titans decided to dust him off and get him on the field last week. The result - 13 carries and a team high 86 yards rushing. Likely to be in the mix this week as the Titans will want to run the ball effectively in the hopes of holding off the Colts' pass rush. 86 yards is probably a high point for his production though.
WR Roydell Williams X

With Calico and now Jones down with injuries, rookie Williams has been getting more looks. Those additional looks resulted in 95 yards and a TD last week, his best game of the season. This week however, the production will be hard to come by in Indy.

WR Drew Bennett (Q) S2

His thumb has not been a factor since returning to the starting lineup. With Jones out it's likely that McNair will lean more on his most reliable receiver. It helps that he's also the one with the skill and size to exploit his matchup with the Colts' secondary, who can be suspect in coverage.

WR Tyrone Calico (Q)
Courtney Roby
B Calico may get back into action this week, but if he does he will see limited snaps and rotate with Roby as the #3 WR for Tennessee.
TE Erron Kinney (Q)
Ben Troupe
S2

The tight ends accounted for over half of the passing production in the Titans' last meeting with the Colts in week four. Kinney remains a strong option and a favorite target for McNair. Troupe returned from injury two weeks ago and got back into the flow last week with four catches. Both make decent fantasy options this weekend.

Indianapolis
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Peyton Manning S1

This one's pretty easy. The Titans continue to struggle in the secondary and Manning's the hottest QB in fantasy football right now.

RB Edgerrin James S1

James is going to get his regardless of opponent.

WR Marvin Harrison
Reggie Wayne
S1

The Tennessee secondary won't know what hit them.

WR Brandon Stokley U

Their first meeting didn't involve Stokley, but this week surely will. His matchup out of the slot provides the most advantage.

TE Dallas Clark X

Just when Clark seemed to finally get it going this season, it looks like we have a two TE situation brewing in Indy.

TE Bryan Fletcher X Fletcher is getting as much attention in the passing game now as Clark and has scored two touchdowns in the past two weeks. Probably not a viable fantasy starter right now, but he's starting to show signs of being a nice option for Manning down field.
 
Arizona (3-8) at San Francisco (2-9) Back to top
Arizona
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Kurt Warner S2

The Niners had held their previous six opponents under 300 yards passing until McNair broke that barrier last week. Warner should easily repeat that this week, with a couple of touchdowns thrown in for good measure.

RB Marcel Shipp (D) B

Shipp keeps getting the start each week but also keeps giving way to the improving Arrington. His neck injury this week may have him relinquishing his starting job to the rookie.

RB J.J. Arrington U

Arrington is running much better and gaining confidence. The Cardinals need to run the ball more to create a more balanced offensive attack. Over the last three games the team has rushed only 43 times. With the Shipp injury Arrington has some upside this week as he'll likely be carrying the full load.

WR Anquan Boldin S2

Boldin may have ended the game last week highly frustrated, but he also ended it highly productive. He remains the team's best player and it's toughest. He'll continue his fine play against the suspect Niner secondary this weekend.

WR Larry Fitzgerald S2

Fitzgerald put 100 yards and a score on the San Fran secondary in their last meeting in week four. No reason to believe this meeting will be much different. Jacksonville had some success against Fitzgerald by being very physical with him at the line of scrimmage. Look for more teams to try and employ that approach in future weeks.

WR Bryant Johnson X Made a surprise return to the lineup last week but still is not fully recovered from his shoulder injury. If his 5-for-77 performance is an indication, maybe he doesn't need to be. He'll continue to serve as the Cardinals' third WR and have sporadic fantasy value.
San Francisco
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Alex Smith B

The Niners' offense was horrific under Smith earlier this season. He has yet to even pass for over 100 yards. That may happen this week thanks to the Arizona pass defense, but expecting much more would be very optimistic.

RB Kevan Barlow U

Barlow produced only 57 total yards and a score last week, but had a 75 yard TD run called back on a penalty. With the rookie back under center the Niners are going to need an effective running game to keep the pressure off. Their offensive line is shaky, but the Cardinals' defensive line is undersized and if Barlow can get close to 20 carries he can make some noise this week.

RB Frank Gore (D) B

Still bothered by the hip flexor injury and may not play this week.

RB Maurice Hicks B

Will again serve as Barlow's backup if Gore can't go. Only good for a series or two but does catch the ball well out of the backfield.

WR Brandon Lloyd
Arnaz Battle (Q)
X

Lloyd and Battle are great young talents with bright futures in the league. But with Smith back as QB the fantasy value they had shown over the past couple of weeks is severely limited.

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