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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Start/Bench List - Week 9
Whitney Walters
November 2, 2006
Sunday Early Sunday Early Sunday Early Sunday Late Monday Night   Player List by Position  
ATL at DET HOU at NYG TEN at JAC DEN at PIT OAK at SEA   Early Injury Status  
CIN at BAL KC at STL Sunday Late Sunday Night Bye Weeks   (O): Out    (D): Doubtful  
DAL at WAS MIA at CHI MIN at SF IND at NE ARI, CAR,   (Q): Questionable  
GB at BUF NO at TB CLE at SD   NYJ, PHI   (P): Probable  
     
Start/Bench Codes (SBC)  
S1: Start 'em Tier One (Stud / Great matchup) U: Upside player (Possible sleeper)  
S2: Start 'em Tier Two (Solid matchup) X: No matchup advantage or disadvantage  
S3: Start 'em Tier Three (Borderline / Barely) B: Bench 'em (Bad Matchup / Too much risk)  
 
Cleveland (2-5) at San Diego (5-2) Back to top
Cleveland
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Charlie Frye B

Regardless of opponent, Frye just can't get it done for your fantasy team.

RB Reuben Droughns S3

The Browns are only marginal in the running game thanks to continued problems on the offensive line. The result is good games against weaker defenses and bad games against stronger ones. The Chargers qualify as one of those stronger ones. Don't expect more than about 60 yards out of Droughns. Owners may get lucky with a score, but it's not likely.

WR Braylon Edwards S3

Opposing defenses are taking Edwards out of the offense. He's had just seven catches for 54 yards in the past three games. The Chargers have allowed just three wide receivers to top 50 yards this year. Those three have come in the past three games however, an indication that the Chargers pass defense is faltering a bit. But two of those three receivers are named Holt and Bruce, so hope remains slight this week for Edwards.

WR Joe Jurevicius B

Had a good matchup last week and went catchless. This offense emphasizes the run and when they pass it's going to Edwards and Winslow.

TE Kellen Winslow Jr. (Q) S1

Winslow is a favorite target for Frye and is a fantasy force. This is actually a nice matchup for him. Despite the strengths of the Chargers defense, where they rate the weakest is in fantasy points allowed to tight ends.

San Diego
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Philip Rivers S3

Rivers production took a dip last week and it's likely that will carry over to this matchup. Teams have been running all over the Browns this year and have had little need for a passing attack to win. With LT in the backfield you can bet the Chargers will follow that same script.

RB LaDainian Tomlinson S1

LT vs. Cleveland. LT wins!

WR Eric Parker
Keenan McCardell
B

Parker and McCardell have yet to score this season and have just 12 catches between them in the past two games. With the passing attack limited this week and continuing to go through LT and Gates, don't expect much out of this pair. If you are in a bind the Parker can be considered, but not McCardell.

TE Antonio Gates S1

After a slow start to the season, Gates has developed into Rivers favorite down field target. He's caught one-quarter of his quarterback's passes to date.

 
Denver (5-2) at Pittsburgh (2-5) Back to top
Denver
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jake Plummer B

While the Broncos pulled back on Plummer again last week, they did take more shots down field for big plays. He did run for a touchdown, but overall it wasn't enough to generate a fantasy worthy effort. Which makes last week the same as about every other week this season.

RB

Mike Bell

S3

Well it was a good bet that the Denver running game would get it going last week. Most just had the wrong Bell in their lineup. When Tatum's turf toe injury flared up, Mike stepped in and reminded everyone why there was a buzz around him in the pre-season - ripping the Colts for 136 yards and two touchdowns on just 15 carries. All indications are that Tatum's turf toe injury (on both feet) will affect him for a while. Look for Mike to carry the load for at least another week. He's a borderline start this week at best however. The Steelers have allowed only three backs to gain more than 60 yards all season.

RB Tatum Bell (P) B The turf toe injury Bell is dealing with on both feet caused him to pull himself from last week's game because he couldn't make cuts. It's best to send him to your bench until his toes heal and he gains back his feature role in the Denver running game.
WR Rod Smith B

Smith is just not a fantasy factor this season. His 6-69 two weeks ago was a season high, but his 2-28 last week was more in line with his weekly production.

WR Javon Walker S3

Walker is the go-to guy now in Denver and their only big-play weapon down field. That was very apparent last week against Indy as they took a few shots down field to Walker. Expect that to continue.

TE Tony Scheffler (P) B The highly regarded and talented rookie finally broke out last week. Going into last week's game with Indy he had just two catches on the season. He went 4-51 against the Colts and looked good. The Denver passing attack is limited this year with the decline of WR Smith, so they need their second TE to step up and play a role. They hope the same #2 TE role Putzier played last year. He may not be worth a fantasy start this week, but he's worth a roster spot.
Pittsburgh
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Ben Roethlisberger B

This is getting almost painful to watch. Roethlisberger is just not playing well at all. He has no confidence and that's leading to poor play and mistakes. Whether the Steelers stick with him and hope he plays himself out of this or not, your fantasy team can't.

RB Willie Parker  S3

Parker hasn't hit 100 yards in two games, and it will be tough for him to hit that mark this week as well. The Broncos haven't allowed a 100 yard back since LJ in week two. He'll likely make up for that lack of rushing production with enough in the short passing game to warrant a continued spot in your starting lineup.

WR Hines Ward B

Ward got off to a slow start this season, but is coming off his second straight eight catch game. Even with the struggles from Big Ben, Ward has shown he can produce. He'll have a tough go of it this week however against CB Bailey, who helped hold Marvin Harrison to just 38 yards last week.

WR Nate Washington
Santonio Holmes (P)
Cedrick Wilson
B

Wilson returned to the lineup last week, further watering down the value of the non-Ward wide receivers. As Indy showed last week, it is possible to get some production from the side of the field that is without Champ Bailey. The problem for fantasy owners is the fact that the production will likely be split between these three receivers.

TE Heath Miller B

Has become a complete non-factor in the Steelers' passing game.

 
Indianapolis (7-0) at New England (6-1) Back to top
Indianapolis
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Peyton Manning S1

Manning appears back in high-power form as he's torched Washington and Denver in the past two weeks. But now comes New England on the road. There will be a lot written and said about Manning's struggles against the Patriots. But the last two regular season meetings, which have been in New England, have been very good games for Manning. In 2004 he threw for 256 yards and two touchdowns, and last year he went 321 and three. The "Belichick has his number" theory doesn't hold up much any more.

RB Dominic Rhodes (Q) B

The switch has happened. It's just not going to be official. Rhodes is still the starter and may remain such. But the rookie Addai is the real deal and Rhodes has only 16 carries to Addai's 28 in the last two games. And those 16 carries have netted just 26 yards.

RB Joseph Addai (Q) S3

Addai won't start but he'll continue to get the bulk of the work out of the backfield. He has yet to log a 100-yard game, but one is coming soon. Not this week however. The Pats defense currently rank #3 against the run. But Addai remains a starter because he can get you points in the passing game if the run is shut down.

WR Marvin Harrison
Reggie Wayne
S1

Harrison took a back seat (way back) to Wayne last week thanks to the fine play of Denver CB Champ Bailey. The production will be more even Sunday night as the Patriots don't have a shut down cornerback. Not even close.

TE Dallas Clark S3

While Utecht and Fletcher have been active in the passing game all season, it's Clark that has the most consistent production week to week. He's scored three touchdowns and had his best pass catching game of the season last week, going 6-68. He'll make a few key catches in this matchup, one quite possibly for a touchdown.

New England
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Tom Brady (P) S2

Brady had the second biggest game of his career last week, throwing for 372 yards and four touchdowns, as the Patriots didn't even bother to try and run on the Vikings. That won't be the case this week against the worst run defense in the league. Brady will shine of course, as he usually does when Indy comes to town. Which by the way seems to be every year.

RB Corey Dillon S3

Dillon will get his work in the matchup that screams for the Patriots to run the ball all day. But this matchup seems to be taylor made for a huge day for his rookie running mate, Maroney. Look for Dillon to take a back seat in this game but to still score a touchdown.

RB Laurence Maroney S2

Maroney may have had only eight carries in each of the last two games, but with each you can see the immense potential in this rookie. At times he seems to run like a back possessed. He's out gaining Dillon and gets work in the passing game at time, which Dillon doesn't. This is a big-time game at home under the lights. This just smells like another big game for Maroney.

WR Doug Gabriel
Reche Caldwell (Q)
S3

In typical Brady fashion, the ball is being spread all over the field. Last week ten different players caught passes. But for at least the past two games it's been Gabriel and Caldwell that have garnered the most looks.

WR Chad Jackson B

There continues to be talk of getting the speedy rookie more involved in the passing game, but so far it's not happening as Caldwell and Gabriel are taking the lead roles right now. For two weeks it's been just one catch a game for Jackson. Thankfully for fantasy owners both have been for touchdowns. That's hard to count on every week, and you shouldn't Sunday night.

TE Ben Watson S2

The new wide receivers and the passing game are clicking. The main beneficiary is Watson as the middle of the field is opening up for him now. He's a big target and just like last week, he'll play a key role in New England's breaking down of another defense that runs cover-2 schemes.

 

Oakland (2-5) at Seattle (4-3)

Back to top
Oakland
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Andrew Walter   B His stat line against Pittsburgh last week was 14-5-51. Yes, that's 51 yards passing. 'Nuf said.
RB Lamont Jordan (Q) S3

Jordan played last week but was limited to just seven carries. The back seems to be improving and he'll likely move back into the starting lineup this week. But backup Fargas will still play a role. Look for Jordan to get close to the 20 carry mark in this matchup with a Seattle defense that's been gouged for 362 yards on the ground in the past two games. Still, don't expect Jordan to get you much more than 60 yards Monday night.

WR Randy Moss S2

Moss has been the target on a third of the Raiders pass attempts this season. He's scored the only WR touchdowns and is the only receiver on this team worth fantasy consideration. The Seahawks' secondary has struggled all year and they've made personnel moves that have not worked. If Moss is willing to extend himself a a bit in this Monday night matchup, he has a good shot at a very productive evening.

TE Courtney Anderson B

Anderson is a big target and you should expect him to get back in the mix in this game after going catchless last week. Unfortunately that doesn't amount to much in a Raiders offense where the tight end is mostly a non-factor.

Seattle
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Seneca Wallace U

Wallace proved last week that he has the skills and poise to run the Seahawks' offense. He has a good arm and can extend plays with his legs. With the talent he has at wide receiver and now with the return of TE Stevens, he'll have plenty of chances for big plays against a Raiders team that is not as good as their last two wins would show.

RB Maurice Morris U

The running game has struggled since Alexander went down and Morris is averaging just 46 YPG since taking over. With the return of starting offensive linemen Womack and Locklear, things should improve. Especially against a porous Oakland run defense.

WR Darrell Jackson S2

Jackson continues to make big plays regardless of who's playing quarterback. Only Holt has scored more touchdowns so far this season. He's starting to benefit from having Branch on the other side of the field drawing some coverage attention.

WR Deion Branch S3

Branch seems to improve each week as he gains confidence in the Seattle playbook. He's been consistent but unspectacular so far as a Seahawk. Look for Wallace to keep favoring Jackson, as he's worked with him for several seasons and is obviously more comfortable with him.

WR D. J. Hackett B

Continues to fill in nicely for the absent Engram. In the past three games he's caught 10 balls for 128 yards and a touchdown. Not enough to warrant a fantasy start most weeks however. Not with Jackson and Branch ahead of him and TE Stevens coming on.

TE Jerramy Stevens U

Stevens only caught three passes last week but one was for a score and he appears to be close to 100% recovered. That's good for fantasy owners looking for a sleeper TE this weekend. He has a huge size, speed and talent advantage over the Raider linebackers, two of which are converted defensive ends.

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