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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Start/Bench List - Week 4
Whitney Walters
September 27, 2007
Sunday Early
Sunday Early
Sunday Late
Sunday Late
Sunday Night
Bye Week
Monday Night
JAC, NO,
 
TEN, WAS  
Start/Bench List by Position
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)
 
Oakland (1-2) at Miami (0-3) Back to top
Oakland
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Daunte Culpepper B

McCown looked good until he aggravated his foot injury and was forced to the sidelines last week. Culpepper came in and did just enough to help the team get a much needed win. The starter for this week's game is still undetermined but odds are it will be Culpepper. Either way the Oakland QB shouldn't be an option for your fantasy team.

RB

Lamont Jordan   S1

Last week's 153 total yards was his lowest output of the season so far. Look for the Raiders to keep feeding him the ball against a Miami defense that finds themselves near the bottom of the league rankings against the run.

WR Jerry Porter B

Porter's single catch outing last week was his second in a row and he's now caught only four of the 15 passes that have come his way. This just isn't working.

WR Ronald Curry S3 Curry's production has decreased since his big 10-catch week one game. But he's caught half the team's touchdowns and remains the primary down field target regardless of who's playing quarterback. Not a real good matchup with the aggressive Miami corners, but still a borderline starter since he's the best option the team has in the passing game.
TE Zack Miller
John Madsen
B

The rookie TE is splitting time with John Madsen, who has five catches to his six. Split time is a fantasy killer to almost any tight end.

Miami
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Trent Green S3

Green should have now silenced his doubters. He's back to his efficient level of play and has the Miami passing offense ranked 7th in the NFL. He's averaging 275 yards and a score per game. Just about what the Raiders are allowing per game. A borderline starter against a very familiar team this week if you need an injury or bye week fill in.

RB

Ronnie Brown

S2

Well what do you know. Get your talented back a decent workload (29 touches) and he produces. Amazing how that works - especially against a suspect defense. Equally amazing is how often teams feel that they should only give their workhorse-type backs 12-15 touches to "keep him fresh". Nonsense. You feed the rock to someone like Brown until he pukes. Has Miami learned their lesson? Lets hope so. The Raiders can be run on and Brown can be a great weapon in the short passing game against the Raiders' linebackers.

RB Jesse Chatman B Now that's a stat line all Brown owners can love - zero touches for zero yards.
WR Chris Chambers S2

Continues to look good and had his second 100-yard game last week. This week's matchup however will be more of a challenge. Oakland's strong secondary has held up well so far, but are not a lock-down unit. All three opponents have had success against them.

WR Marty Booker B Booker has developed a nice rhythm with Green and is a nice outlet for him when Chambers isn't open down field. Doesn't have a matchup advantage this week against CB's Asomugha and Washington, but will still likely get his typical possession receiver type numbers - 3-4 catches for 40-50 yards.
WR Ted Ginn Jr. B

Got his first NFL catch last week. Just the one. Whoopee!

TE David Martin B

The TE just doesn't play enough of a role in the Miami passing game to make Martin a viable fantasy starter, especially with backup Peelle stealing some of the production.

 
Green Bay (3-0) at Minnesota (1-2) Back to top
Green Bay
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Brett Favre S2

The old man is on a roll and now he gets to break the record against a familiar and long time foe. In the past two struggling seasons Favre has averaged almost 300 YPG against the Vikings and has tossed six touchdowns. The Packers will have no choice but to air it out in this matchup, as the running game isn't going anywhere.

RB Brandon Jackson
DeShawn Wynn
B

This unimpressive pair will share what little running load there is (Green Bay ran the ball only 11 times last week) this weekend against a Vikings defense that's allowing a league low 2.5 YPC. Not a formula for success.

RB DeShawn Wynn B Jackson's ineffectiveness has opened the door for fellow rookie Wynn, who looks like the better runner of the two at this point. He averaged 5.0 YPC last week but that was aided by 38 of his 50 yards coming on a single run. The running game will continue to struggle and with Morency coming back this could be a three-headed affair best avoided by fantasy owners.
RB Vernand Morency B Inactive again last weekend and there's no real indication as to when he'll return to action. Could be this week or a month from now.
WR Donald Driver S2

Driver is Favre's #1 option regardless of coverage. CB Winfield has been publicly calling for a matchup with Driver, and he'll get it.

WR Greg Jennings B

Jennings returned to action last week in a big way thanks to a 57-yard touchdown grab. His hamstring isn't 100% recovered yet however and the team is still keeping a close eye on him. He'll likely continue to start but rookie James Jones will see a lot of snaps at the #2 WR spot also.

WR James Jones S3

Jennings may have had the big touchdown last week, but it was Jones who led the team in looks from Favre. The promising rookie remains a viable fantasy factor thanks to his high use in the offense and his ability to take advantage of the matchup advantages he has thanks to Driver pulling the best the opponent has. This matchup will be no different, as Jones will draw the beatable CB Griffin or Whitaker.

TE Donald Lee
Bubba Franks
B Both tight ends produced last week, which is a rarity. Lee is the starter and the better of the two at this point, but Franks will continue to be a factor, limiting both of their fantasy value. The production just won't be consistent enough to consider either as a starter.
Minnesota
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Kelly Holcomb B

Holcomb will likely fill in one more week for the injured Jackson. Holcomb will be under the same pressure as Jackson and have the same limited down field options, but has the distinct disadvantage of being completely immobile. He was sacked five times last week and could be on his back as many times this week against an aggressive Packers defensive front.

RB Chester Taylor B

May be activated this week as the Vikings will need to run the ball a ton in this matchup. If he does return to the playing field his playing time will be very limited.

RB Adrian Peterson S2 This will be Peterson's toughest matchup so far this season. The Packers are allowing just 86 rushing YPG to opposing backs and are one of only four teams yet to allow a rushing TD. There will be opportunities for AP to make plays in the passing game as Holcomb will be under intense pressure all afternoon and will need to dump the ball into the flats.
WR Bobby Wade
Troy Williamson
Robert Ferguson
Sidney Rice
B Another week and the story's the same. The Vikings receivers are a complete mess. They don't stand a chance against the strong CB duo of Woodson and Harris.
TE Vishante Shiancoe U

Shiancoe is a talented receiver and as last week showed if you look his way he will make plays. With the long passing game shut down by the pressure Holcomb will be under, expect Shiancoe to be active again this week and a nice sleeper starter option.

 
Pittsburgh (3-0) at Arizona (1-2) Back to top
Pittsburgh
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Ben Roethlisberger S3

After a big week one the Steelers QB has settled into a more recognizable range of about 200 yards and a single TD per game. This team leads the league in rushing and is well below the league average with just 26 pass attempts per game. Nothing about this matchup with a solid Arizona defense indicates much will be different Sunday.

RB Willie Parker S1

This is still a run first team and Parker leads all backs with 74 carries and 368 yards through three games. The Cardinals have held their own against three great backs so far - Gore, Alexander and McGahee. Here comes #4 with a bullet.

WR Hines Ward B Ward was obviously not himself last week and came out of the game with a bruised knee that the team felt might have been worse. He's doubtful to play this week but will likely give it a go if he can practice late in the week. He should be avoided this week as the risk of either not playing or not being full speed is high.
WR Santonio Holmes S2

Holmes has the best matchup in the Arizona secondary with the average at best CB Green. He'll give you solid numbers and may even score. But his upside is limited in a Steelers' offense that will hardly ever "air it out".

WR Nate Washington B Washington may get the start this week if Ward is out, but he's still not a fantasy option. He may pull in the occasional long ball but that's about it.
TE Heath Miller S3

Four of Roethlisberger's six touchdowns so far have gone to the tight end. Unfortunately for Miller owners three of those have gone to backups Matt Spaeth and Jerame Tuman. Miller still makes a borderline fantasy option however. He's had four catches in two games and led the team in receiving last week going 4-82. With Ward likely out or limited he is a prime candidate to pick up some of the slack in the passing game.

Arizona
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Matt Leinart B

Leinart's inconsistent play got him benched last week against a very tough Baltimore defense he just couldn't figure out. He'll be back in the starting lineup this week but the opponent isn't much easier. The Steelers pressure the QB as well as anyone and won't give Leinart much room to succeed.

RB Edgerrin James S3

After two solid games to start the season James is in the second week of a killer schedule. Pittsburgh will be no easier to run on than Baltimore was last week. Don't expect much but the Cardinals should give him 20-plus carries in an effort to shorten the game and keep pressure off Leinart.

WR Anquan Boldin S3 Another brutal matchup for both Boldin and ...
WR Larry Fitzgerald S3 ... Fitzgerald. The Steelers have held all opposing wideouts to under 70 yards and allowed only a single touchdown to be scored. But this passing game is all about Boldin and Fitzgerald and they will get their looks. Only five receivers in the league have more targets then this pair. They are borderline starters with upside.
TE Leonard Pope B The tight end just isn't a part of this passing attack.
 

Tampa Bay (2-1) at Carolina (2-1)

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Tampa Bay
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jeff Garcia X

Garcia has bounced back nicely from the beating he took in week one and is playing well. Now that the Bucs have some confidence in their QB look for them to open up the passing game more. The matchup with the Panthers this week is decent but nothing to write home about.

RB Carnell Williams S3

After a week of telling everyone he intended to run the Caddy until the wheels fell off Gruden gave Williams only 12 carries last week. The story is that his ribs were sore and after a fourth quarter fumble Gruden turned to backups Pittman and Graham to close out the game. If Williams starts off this game well and doesn't put the ball on the turf you can bet Tampa will run him. But he carries risk until his ribs are 100% and the Carolina defense has been very good against the run so far this season.

RB Earnest Graham B Lets not lose perspective here. Just because the rarely used Graham came in late against an already worn down St. Louis defense and broke off some nice runs doesn't mean he's the new feature back in Tampa. And it doesn't mean Gruden is going to give him eight carries every week. If Williams is healthy and running well he may not even get off the bench. Or they could begin working him in as a change-of-pace option similar to what teams like Atlanta and Washington do.
RB Michael Pittman B Pittman remains a backup and 3rd-down option for the Bucs. In a PPR league he can at least get you some points via his 3-5 catches each week.
WR Joey Galloway S3

Galloway has a tough matchup this week with fine cover corner Lucas. He's shown that he still has what it takes to get open down field and he and Garcia have established a nice rapport.

WR Ike Hilliard U

Has emerged as the #2 WR for the Bucs but there's still a chance the more talented Michael Clayton will overtake him if he's given the opportunity. So far that hasn't happened and with Galloway pulling the best coverage the Panthers have look for Hilliard to surprise this week against the beatable CB Gamble.

TE Alex Smith B

Garcia is showing a knack for finding his big tight end down field and Smith is taking advantage of the opportunities. While that works great for the Bucs passing game, the resulting 2-3 catches a game aren't enough to make him a viable fantasy option.

Carolina
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jake Delhomme or
David Carr
B

Tampa has been strong against the pass this season. Early indications are that you could flip a coin on who the starter will be this weekend for Carolina. So neither is a good option for your fantasy team. Look for the Panthers to run the ball a lot in this matchup.

RB DeShaun Foster S2

The Panthers are running the ball very well and they get another nice matchup this week with the forgiving Bucs defense. Foster has produced every week so far and is locked in as the primary back. His numbers take a hit each week however with Williams taking a third to half the carries.

RB DeAngelo Williams B

Williams may have the most upside in the Panthers backfield long-term, but right now he's not an option for fantasy teams. Foster is out performing him and Williams has been relegated to just a "change-of-pace" role.

WR Steve Smith S2

Smith's stinker last week may have been due to some injury problems. There have been some reports that he suffered an "undisclosed" injury that had him going in and out of the game. Odds are high that it's nothing and he' fine. A heavy run game plan and questions at QB limit his upside this week, but he always plays very well against Tampa.

WR Keary Colbert
Drew Carter
B

Colbert and Carter are running neck and neck in the battle for the #2 spot opposite Smith. Both are 7-86 through three games. Colbert is still the starter but Carter is getting plenty of playing time. Bottom line is that this year is shaping up to be just like every other year with Smith. Not much production for the #2 or #3 wideouts.

TE Jeff King S3

The tight end is back in the Panthers offense. If you want the Panthers #2 receiver this year it may just end up being King. He has more looks, catches and yards than any wideout not named Smith. The tight end is always active against Tampa and their cover-2 scheme.

 

Seattle (2-1) at San Francisco (2-1)

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Seattle
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Matt Hasselbeck S2

Hasselbeck continues to play well and has plenty of weapons around him now. The Niners will be a tough matchup on the road, but they are a familiar opponent and he typically performs well - averaging 230 years and 2 touchdowns in their last three meetings.

RB Shaun Alexander S2

Alexander is running strong this season despite the broken wrist. San Fran was gashed by the Steelers last week for 180 yards on the ground and Alexander has averaged over 80 yards and a touchdown in each of his last four meetings with the Niners who are now without the young and talented LB Lawson.

WR Deion Branch S3

Branch has put up two very nice games since his week one stinker and the trend should continue this weekend against the Niners. San Francisco has improved in the secondary with the addition of CB Clements, but Branch will still get enough to warrant a borderline starter status this week.

WR Nate Burleson S3

Burleson continues to start for the injured Hackett and is developing into a nice option for Hasselbeck. Life opposite a starter like Branch can be good since he will typically draw the best coverage. That advantage may not exist this week as both Niners corners (Clements and Harris) are equally very solid in coverage.

WR Bobby Engram S2

The song remains the same with Engram. Never flashy. Just puts up consistent numbers each week. Through three weeks he's 3-64, 5-71 and 5-62 with a TD. With starters Branch and Burleson tied up with solid coverage this weekend look for Engram to have a very nice game against the always struggling nickel back Spencer.

TE Marcus Pollard B

After a very successful Seattle debut in week one Pollard has been silent. This offense does utilize the tight end, but seems to be streaky in it's use. Pollard may go weeks without a catch then bust out a multi-catch, TD game.

San Francisco
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Alex Smith B

Smith and the Niners passing attack are struggling and now he's lost his best target in TE Davis. Seattle may be ranked 30th in pass defense, but I still wouldn't want to be relying on Smith as my fantasy starter this week.

RB Frank Gore S2

Gore hasn't had that breakout game yet, but he also hasn't had over 20 carries yet. With the passing game going nowhere and now without their best weapon, the Niners should look to run Gore until he drops Sunday against a Seattle defense that gave up 128 yards to Edgerrin James in week two. Two of Gore's biggest games last season were against the Seahawks. He got 53 carries in those two meetings.

WR Darrell Jackson S3

Jackson pushed through a bad hamstring last week and had his best game as a Niner, going 4-69. In this offense that's pretty good. He'll need to step up even more this week with TE Davis out of action. The Seahawks are not playing good pass defense and corners Trufant and Jennings are very beatable.

WR Arnaz Battle B

As the #3 option in the Niners passing attack Battle just isn't getting the looks. May get a few extra this week with TE Davis out, but he's still not a fantasy option.

TE Delanie Walker U

With Davis out for a couple of games Walker is the best bet to pick up some of the slack at tight end. Fellow backup Bajema will also see action but he's more of a blocker. Walker was very active last week, ending the day second on the team with 7 looks from QB Smith. He could surprise this week, but I wouldn't start him unless you were desperate at TE.

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