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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Quarterback Watch Report - Week 5
Scott Boyter
October 3, 2006
Top Ten Fantasy QB’s to own Comment
1 IND Peyton Manning Peyton's making it hard to keep him at this lofty perch. In fact, the only thing that keeps him from dropping is his second consecutive rushing TD. It sure wasn't his passing numbers against a very average (at best) Jet pass D. A 217-yard,one-TD game against New York isn¹t going to cut it. It'll take something along the lines of 350 yards and three scores to solidify him as the definite No. 1 fantasy quarterback.
2 PHI Donovan McNabb He's a monster again, plain and simple. But as well as he's done this season, can even he withstand the losses of Brian Westbrook, Donte Stallworth AND Reggie Brown? Westbrook's problem is more than nagging; it's degenerative, reportedly bone-on-bone contact. You've got to believe the Eagles are at least considering shutting him down. Stallworth's hammy apparently flared up in the Monday night game, and Brown suffered a shoulder injury that didn't look good at all. Add it all up and you've got to at least consider a second option. Not just because the Dallas D looks good, but simply because of a potential lack of weapons for McNabb.
3 NYG Eli Manning Manning jumps up a spot though he didn't even play this week. But he's got some difficult matchups the next few weeks(Washington, Atlanta, Dallas, Tampa Bay and Chicago), so make 100 percent sure he's your best option.
4 CIN Carson Palmer Palmer is on the verge of a fall himself, after stinking it up against the Patriots. Maybe he and the rest of the Bengals got the message that they¹re not the elite team most of us thought they were after beating Pittsburgh. If that's the case, maybe they can come back angry and hungry after the bye. But don¹t just slap Palmer back in your lineup automatically in two weeks. He has to take on Tampa Bay, Carolina, Atlanta, Baltimore and San Diego in his next five games. His stock will probably slump before it rises again.
5 DAL Drew Bledsoe

You¹ve got to love Bledsoe's fantasy potential,even if he didn¹t torch Tennessee (179 yards, two TDs) like you would have expected him to. Philly, the Cowboys' next opponent, is vulnerable through the air, as are upcoming opponents the Texans, Giants and Panthers. Add to the mix a healthy Terrell Owens, and Bledsos stock is soaring. Now if he'd could only learn to get rid of the ball a little bit sooner before taking a beatdown ...

6 STL Marc Bulger

Welcome back, Marc. You could just see his dissection of the Lions coming as the Ram offense stopped sputtering and started to click more the previous couple of games. Bulger¹s stay on this list could be short-lived, however. After playing the Packers, St. Louis takes on the Seahawks at home, is on bye, then heads to San Diego.

7 NE Tom Brady Kind of an, "eh, whatever" performance against the Bengals, with 188 yards and two scores. The re-emergence of the Patriot ground game means we may have seen the top level of Brady's fantasy potential for the rest of the season. He's back to being the solid type of performer who won't lose a week for you, but he won't win it for you, either.
8 WAS Mark Brunell He's making his meltdown against Dallas a couple of weeks ago look like a distant memory. The way he carved up the tough Jaguar D makes it look like the Al Saunders offense might finally be taking hold. Brunell is quickly charging toward must-start status.
9 DET Jon Kitna Kitna's lit it up for better than 300 yards and four TDs the last two weeks. He struck the Rams for 280 and two scores after torching the Packers. The new chemistry he¹s found with Mike Furrey, along with the explosive potential of Roy Williams and a running game that finally has a pulse are all factors in making Kitna someone worth consideration every week. Of course, if the 0-4 Lions drop another couple of games in a row, they may be too downtrodden to effectively run Mike Martz' offense.
10  NO Drew Brees Brees is rather silently putting up some massive numbers. Heading in to the bye he'll go up against the Buccaneers and Eagles before returning to face the Ravens. He's another guy who was a big question mark before the season began that is inching closer to must-start status.

(Note – this listing considers the rankings of QB’s if a draft was held today)

Climbing Up The Ladder

Matt Leinart (ARI) ­ The ML Era starts a lot quicker than just about anyone predicted. Let's see how he deals with the Chiefs and Bears before you run out and grab him, though. Even if his targets include Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin.

Brad Johnson (MIN) ­ Much like Tom Brady, Johnson won't win any games from a fantasy perspective, but he won't lose any, either.
And this week against the Lions he could be a difference maker for a lot of teams.

Charlie Frye (CLE) ­ Frye didn't mix in a rushing score, but tossed three TDs against an admittedly woeful Raider pass defense.
He has become a quarterback worth running out when your starter's matchup isn¹t a good one.

Sliding Back

Kurt Warner (ARI) ­ He's finally on the bench. Consider jettisoning him from your squad immediately.

Alex Smith (SF) ­ Smith probably burned a lot of guys who took a chance and started him. But don't hang him in effigy just yet, since he gets the Raiders at home in Week 5. As bad as he looked against KC, he could look that good against Oakland.

Andrew Walter (OAK) ­ Does this really even rate a mention? Can you slide down any further than rock bottom?

Matt Hasselbeck (SEA) ­ The volatile season continues. The Seahawk offense can't be that helpless without Shaun Alexander, can it?

Brett Favre (GB) - It's still fun to watch him play, but he can't do it alone. And with the possible exception of Greg Jennings, Favre has no other real weapons. The brain-dead interceptions don't help matters, either.