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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Start/Bench List - Week 10
Whitney Walters
November 9, 2006
Sunday Early Sunday Early Sunday Early Sunday Late Sunday Night   Player List by Position  
BAL at TEN HOU at JAC SD at CIN DEN at OAK CHI at NYG   Early Injury Status  
BUF at IND KC at MIA SF at DET DAL at ARI Monday Night   (O): Out    (D): Doubtful  
CLE at ATL NO at PIT WAS at PHI STL at SEA TB at CAR   (Q): Questionable  
GB a MIN NYJ at NE         (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)  
 
New Orleans (6-2) at Pittsburgh (2-6) Back to top
New Orleans
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Drew Brees S2

Brees has taken on all comers (CAR, PHI, BAL) lately and held his own. He's thrown for 972 yards and nine touchdowns in the past three games. Pittsburgh on the road may bring another difficult matchup for Brees, but it would be a mistake to count him out.

RB Deuce McAllister S3

McAllister may have scored last week, but the Saints' running game hasn't returned from the bye week. Deuce has just 43 yards rushing in the past two games. Getting back on track won't be easy this week. The Steelers have one of the top run defenses in the league and haven't allowed a 100-yard rusher all season.

RB Reggie Bush (P) B

Alright, it's time to cool the jets on Bush. The ankle was obviously bothering him last week, but the troubles started a few games back. Bush has yet to prove he can run the ball at the pro level. He hasn't gained more than 25 yards on the ground in the past five games. Without some production in the passing game he's of no fantasy value. Oh yeah, and Mr. "Can score a touchdown any time he touches the ball" has yet to cross the goal-line on any of his 127 offensive touches.

WR Joe Horn (Q) S3

Horn was a surprise scratch last week due to a groin injury. Early indications are that he'll return to action Sunday. Prior to missing last week he had just completed a two week tear where he went 11-236 with three touchdowns. Look for him to return to his more typical average performance in this matchup.

WR Marques Colston   S2

What more can be said of this talented rookie that almost everyone passed up on draft day? He's failed to produce only once this season and leads the league (along with Holt) with seven touchdowns.

WR Devery Henderson X Filled in for the injured Horn last week and blew up for 111 yards and two scores. Horn should return this week, but look for the Saints to keep the speedy Henderson in the mix. You may see more 3-WR sets in an attempt to stretch the struggling Pittsburgh secondary.
Pittsburgh
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Ben Roethlisberger S3

The turnovers keep piling up, but Big Ben's fantasy stats do as well. He set a team record with 38 completions last week and has thrown for over 1200 yards and seven touchdowns in the past four games. The Saints' pass defense is top five in yards allowed, but they've given up 14 touchdowns through the air. If you don't lose points for interceptions, Roethlisberger is a borderline starter this week if you need him. But with the bye weeks over you probably don't.

RB Willie Parker  S2

Parker has been the most consistent part of the Pittsburgh offense all season. Even if teams can limit his rushing he can hurt them in the short passing game that the Steelers love to go to. The Saints run defense had its moments early in the season, but of late they haven't been that successful.

WR Hines Ward S2

Even with all the struggles, Ward is flat out getting it done lately. He's had a great month and should be in your starting lineup every week now.

WR Nate Washington
Santonio Holmes
Cedrick Wilson
B

There is no clear #2 WR behind Ward. All three of these guys have had their moments this season and there has been no rhyme or reason to when they have.

TE Heath Miller B

Benefited from Roethlisberger's big passing game last week with a season high five catches. Still, he's become a non-factor in the Steelers' passing game.

 
N.Y. Jets (4-4) at New England (6-2) Back to top
New York
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Chad Pennington (P) S3

Pennington and the passing game are just not clicking on a consistent basis and he's struggling to put up startable fantasy numbers each week. He hasn't bested 200 yards since week four. Not even with good matchups. The Patriots' already struggling secondary has lost their leader, S Rodney Harrison. So this presents another good matchup for Pennington that he may not take advantage of.

RB Leon Washington S3

Since Tatum Bell ran all over them in week three, the New England defense has allowed just 54 YPG to opposing backs. The Jets will need Washington to have a solid game to keep the offense balanced. The chances of him accomplishing that are slim.

RB Kevan Barlow (P) B Still working as the team's backup and short-yardage back. To date that's been netting him about 10-12 carries a game, but he's only scored once in the past four games.
WR Laveranues Coles (Q) S2

Coles has seen his production take a serious hit due to the lingering calf injury. The off week came at a good time for him. With S Harrison out this week the New England secondary will be a safer place to roam for both Coles and ...

WR Jerricho Cotchery S2

... Cotchery. Look for both to have success this weekend.

TE Chris Baker B

Baker hasn't scored since week three and has just three games with more than a single catch.

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

Brady had a nightmare of a game last week against Indy but should bounce back against a familiar opponent Sunday. He typically plays well against the Jets and put up 220 yards and a touchdown in their week two matchup earlier this season. The passing attack has greatly improved since then.

RB Corey Dillon S2

Dillon keeps plugging along. He doesn't have near the per carry production of his rookie backfield mate, but he's getting the scoring opportunities. Two of the last three games have been two touchdown affairs for Dillon. He may take a back seat to Maroney in yardage each week, but he retains his fantasy value with scoring. There will be ample chances for just that this week against the terrible Jets' run defense.

RB Laurence Maroney (Q) S2

Maroney continues to show his talent. Every time he gets even close to the same number of carries as Dillon he out gains him. He just has much more big play ability in his young legs. The problem with Maroney's fantasy value is the fact that Dillon is running hard and keeps getting a good chuck of carries overall, and most of the carries near the goal-line. Thanks to the very favorable matchup with the Jets this week, there should be plenty of production in the running game to go around.

WR Doug Gabriel
Reche Caldwell
Troy Brown
B

In typical Brady fashion, the ball is being spread all over the field. Last week he threw passes to nine different players. The week before that, ten. With that kind of distribution you just can't rely on a Patriot wide receiver for your fantasy team.

WR Chad Jackson B

For all the talk of getting the speedy and talented rookie more involved in the passing game, the results just aren't there. He hasn't had more than a single catch in a game since week four, and the most he's had is two.

TE Ben Watson S2

Watson has finally got his "sleeper" season going. He's by far the most consistent Patriots receiver and has been targeted by Brady seven or more times in five of the last six games.

 
San Diego (6-2) at Cincinnati (4-4) Back to top
San Diego
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Philip Rivers S3

With LT on a serious two game roll, Rivers' numbers have taken a hit. He had his first no-touchdown game last week. With no end to the LT Show in sight this may be an ongoing problem for Rivers owners. Also, Parker and McCardell are not great down field targets. The Bengals don't pose any matchup problems in the passing game, so Rivers remains a fantasy start, barely.

RB LaDainian Tomlinson S1

Do you really need a reason?

WR Eric Parker
Keenan McCardell
B

Parker and McCardell are at best possession type receivers. Neither are big play threats down field. This limits their fantasy potential. They've made it through half the season without scoring a touchdown and with LT and Gates in the mix that streak may continue.

TE Antonio Gates S1

Don't sweat last week's 2-22 performance. Even stud tight ends have off weeks.

Cincinnati
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Carson Palmer S3

It's not that Palmer is playing badly, just well below his stellar 2005 pace. One thing has become clear this season, Palmer is struggling when pressured. He's not playing with confidence in his protection. That will be a big factor in him continuing to under perform with the Chargers coming to town with a defense that leads the league with 31 sacks.

RB Rudi Johnson S3

Johnson is still scoring touchdowns, but has way too many games where he fails to get at least 20 carries. In the three games that's happened Rudi has rushed for 96, 145 and 101 yards. His top rushing games of the season. Without a consistent commitment to the run, Johnson makes an iffy start this week against the excellent San Diego defense.

RB Chris Perry B Has been a complete non-factor in the three games since his return. There are no signs this will change.
WR Chad Johnson S3

Johnson is currently on pace for his first sub-1000 yard season since his rookie year. And his frustration is becoming more public. It's rarely a coverage issue as Johnson can beat most of what any team can throw at him. The issue is Palmer doesn't have the time to hit him on the deeper routes. This week will be no different.

WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh S2 The struggles in the passing game have been to Houshmandzadeh's benefit all season. The more pressure Palmer feels the more he needs a reliable target in the short-to-intermediate passing game. TJ's specialty.
WR Chris Henry S3

Henry has been using his speed to abuse the nickel and dime corners that have been covering him. Due to these coverage mismatches he's been able to pull in the big plays down field that Mr. Johnson covets. He's rarely going to get the number of looks or catches Johnson and TJ get, but he's been very productive with what he gets.

 

San Francisco (3-5) at Detroit (2-6)

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San Francisco
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Alex Smith S3

Smith's second season continues to go well. But he's not a fantasy starter yet. The production week-to-week just isn't there. Detroit is one of the most forgiving pass defenses in the league but has played much better over the past four games. This has the look of a high scoring game, so it's possible Smith may squeeze out numbers that are startable. But the odds are not high. You likely have a more reliable option on your roster.

RB Frank Gore S2

Gore had his worst rushing game of the season last week against the very tough Vikings. The Niners need to get him more carries. He's topped 20 only twice all season. He does make up for some of that with catches out of the backfield. The Lions pose no real matchup threat and Gore should easily get back to his productive ways.

WR Antonio Bryant S3

Bryant is very talented and the only big play maker the Niners have on offense. He's a good bet to score this week against a Detroit secondary that's allowed a near league high 15 passing touchdowns this season.

WR Arnaz Battle B

Without his two touchdown game over a month ago most fantasy players wouldn't even have the #2 WR in San Francisco on their radar. And rightfully not. He's topped 40 yards receiving only once.

TE Eric Johnson B

Hasn't scored a touchdown since week two, but amazingly consistent since then. He's caught three passes in each of the past five games. He remains a target in the limited passing game and is way over due for another score. But that's not a good enough reason to make him your starter.

Detroit
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jon Kitna S2

Kitna's low touchdown and high interception numbers have limited his fantasy value so far this season. But the offense is really starting to play well and he's primed for a strong second half of the season. Starting this week against the worst scoring defense in the league.

RB Kevin Jones S1

Jones has quietly worked his way into a top fantasy back this season in the new Detroit offense. He has already hit career highs in rushing touchdowns, catches and receiving yards. The Niners have been tinkering with their defense all season and hit on a very successful lineup combination last week. Still, they will need to show more than a one week effort to warrant fantasy owners considering them a difficult matchup.

WR Roy Williams S1

Williams is one of the premier young wide receiver talents in the league. There is no member of the secondary wearing a Niner uniform that will be able to handle him.

WR Mike Furrey S3

The more teams focus on shutting down Roy Williams, the more success Furrey has. He's become a great complement to the big-play Williams and is on pace for an 80 catch season. Without a productive #3 WR or TE, Furrey will continue to play a productive role in the Detroit passing game.

 

Washington (3-5) at Philadelphia (4-4)

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Washington
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Mark Brunell B

Brunell and the Redskin passing game have struggled in all but a couple of games this season. Those struggles will likely continue this week. He's on the road against a strong Philly defense that he rarely has success against and that has had two weeks to prepare for the matchup.

RB Clinton Portis S2

Portis has cracked 80 yards rushing only three times this season. It's no coincidence that two of those games are the only ones where he's had more than 20 carries. He needs to touch the ball more. Not only for his fantasy success but for the Skins as well. It's not due to a lack of effort. It's just that Washington can't keep drives going. That's not likely to change much going into Philly.

WR Santana Moss (Q) B

Moss was a scratch last week due to a strained hamstring and may miss this week's game also.

WR

Antwaan Randle El
Brandon Lloyd
James Thrash

B

This trio tried to make up for the loss of Moss last week against Dallas with very limited success. The task doesn't get any easier going into Philly.

TE Chris Cooley (P) S2

The passing game continues to struggle, but Cooley has remained active and a viable fantasy option. He's scored three of the Redskins' four passing touchdowns in the previous four games.

Philadelphia
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Donovan McNabb S1

McNabb routinely has success against the Redskins. This matchup should be no different. The Washington secondary leads the league in passes allowed of 20-plus yards. The number would be even higher if Terrell Owens didn't drop that easy TD last week. Look for the Eagles to attack them all afternoon.

RB Brian Westbrook (P) S1

Despite lingering concerns about his knee, Westbrook is just flat out tearing it up. The week off surely will help.

WR Donte' Stallworth S2

Stallworth's hamstring appears to be fully healed. He played against the Jags before the bye with no setback. He'll be back in the starting lineup again and should have a big game against what has become a very torchable Washington secondary.

WR

Reggie Brown

B

With Stallworth out, Brown has been the Eagles most consistent receiver. He's scored six touchdowns, more than all the other wideouts combined. He'll take a backseat now to Stallworth but will still get the occasional touchdown. He's a borderline fantasy option at best.

WR Hank Baskett
Greg Lewis
B

Neither of these guys stepped up in Stallworth's absence. Now that he's back you can forget about them completely.

TE L.J. Smith S1

Smith put up a 1-11 stinker against Jacksonville before the bye. With a group of inconsistent wide receivers he remains one of McNabb's primary targets. Don't hesitate to keep him in your lineup.

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