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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)
 
Denver (2-1) at Indianapolis (3-0) Back to top
Denver
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jay Cutler B

Suffered a "minor" ankle sprain last week in what was his worst performance of this short season. Bouncing back will be tough this weekend facing an Indy defense that pressure the quarterback very well. There will be some matchups to take advantage of down field but Cutler will be hard pressed to reach them with limited pocket time.

RB Travis Henry S2

As most teams that face the Colts do, the Broncos will look to run as much as possible to slow the game down and keep the Indy offense off the field. Denver has the running game to pull it off and the Colts aren't as strong against the run as their numbers would suggest.

WR Javon Walker S2

Walker has a favorable matchup this weekend with the smaller Indy corners. If Denver can give Cutler the time he needs in the pocket Walker can produce is what could be a high scoring game.

WR Brandon Marshall   S3

Marshall's numbers have improved each week this season and his size and athletic abilities will again create mismatches in the secondary. His bottom line is the same as Walker's this week. If Cutler has the time he can produce in this matchup.

WR Brandon Stokley U Stokley has been a great addition to the Denver passing attack, but this may be the week he has the most value. If anyone can find openings in the Colts' zone coverage it will be former Colt Stokley.
TE Daniel Graham B

Graham had one critical pass come his way last week and he dropped it. His blocking will be called on more this week than his receiving. Look for him to help in pass protection most of the afternoon.

Indianapolis
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Peyton Manning S1

Manning hung 345 and three touchdowns on Denver last season but the results may not be so good this time around. Denver is better suited to handle his receivers but Addai can run on them all day. Look for an average game from Manning with a lot of hand offs.

RB Joseph Addai S1 With the passing game slowed a bit this week look for Addai to get plenty of action against a suspect Denver run defense that is still struggling to adjust to the new schemes of DC Jim Bates. The possible loss of run-stopping SS Lynch could make this matchup even better.
WR Marvin Harrison
Reggie Wayne
S2

Neither Harrison or Wayne have scored since week one and now they go into what will likely be their toughest matchups of the season. Harrison's 2006 meeting with CB Bailey resulted in a 5-38 outing. Wayne blew up for 10-138 and 3 TD's in the same game as Denver had no help on the other side of Bailey. Now new CB Bly enters the fray and the results should be quite different. Both lose stud status this week but remain must starts.

WR Anthony Gonzalez U The rookie has been getting more looks each week and could play a key role in breaking down the Denver coverage schemes this weekend. With Harrison and Wayne locked in battles with the stud corners look for Indy to work Gonzalez out of the slot against nickel and dime coverage. He'll have an advantage there.
TE Dallas Clark S2

Clark is off to a great start this season and this is shaping up to possibly be one of Clark's best seasons. He's on pace for 70 catches. He went 6-68 in last year's meeting with Denver as their linebackers and safeties struggle to handle him consistently in coverage.

 
Kansas City (1-2) at San Diego (1-2) Back to top
Kansas City
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Damon Huard B

Huard's numbers have improved each week and he got his team an important win last Sunday. The Chargers' pass defense has been torched the past two games by Brady and Favre. Huard ain't Brady or Favre.

RB Larry Johnson S3

Okay, it's been three weeks and things are not looking any better. This offense stinks and they are not able to run the ball. LJ is averaging just 2.8 YPC as he faces 8-man fronts constantly behind an offensive line that can't handle them. On the road against a very strong San Diego run defense is no place to try and fix this mess. Odds are you have no choice but to keep Johnson in your lineup. Just don't expect much.

WR Dwayne Bowe S3 This kid is the real deal and has given the Chiefs passing game a boost. He's big, athletic and surprisingly quick. It's tough to recommend anyone in this passing attack other than Gonzalez but Bowe has delivered a TD in each of the past two games and may become a consistent scoring option with opposing teams focused on double covering Gonzalez.
WR Samie Parker B

Of all the receivers getting looks outside of Bowe, Parker seems to be the most consistent. He'll never be a fantasy option in this passing game though and will slide into forgotten-ville once Kennison returns.

TE Tony Gonzalez S2

Still losing some looks to backup Kris Wilson due to the ineptitude of the receiving options in Kansas City, but he still presents the best fantasy option on this team right now.

San Diego
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Philip Rivers S3 Rivers showed improvement in his play for the second week in a row and that's a good sign. Look for the game plan to be as much LT as possible and for Rivers to put up a solid but average 200-yard, 2 TD performance.
RB LaDainian Tomlinson S1 Okay, this is it. The weekend LT goes off. Home against the Chiefs. Write it down.
WR Vincent Jackson   U

Jackson showed some life last week against a very good set of cornerbacks. The passing game still begins and ends with Gates, but Jackson has the size and talent to be a consistent performer for the Chargers. They just need to get the offense clicking.

WR Malcolm Floyd
Buster Davis
B The rookie Davis is technically the starter but both he and Floyd are equally ineffective on the field. The pair have just eight catches between them through three games.
TE Antonio Gates S1

Averaging nine catches for 99 yards through three games. Most starting wide receivers aren't averaging that.

 

Philadelphia (1-2) at New York Giants (1-2)

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Philadelphia
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Donovan McNabb S1

The Giants held up well against Washington's Campbell last week, but you can bet the now in sync Eagles will come out with both guns blazing in this key divisional matchup. Look for another big game from McNabb against a New York team he put up 350 yards and 2 TD's on last season.

RB Brian Westbrook S1

Seems an annual occurrence now. Westbrook gets banged up, there are worries and concerns, and he just keeps tearing teams up. Should be no different this week against a Giants team he's used to tearing up. He's averaged 128 total yards and a touchdown in their last three meetings.

WR Reggie Brown B

The matchups are good this week with the injury depleted New York secondary. But Brown just isn't getting it done. He has just five catches for 64 yards this season. For two weeks he got the looks from McNabb but failed to capitalize. Last week he was ignored.

WR

Kevin Curtis

S2

In one short half of play the free agent potential of Curtis was realized. Now it's time to build on last week's breakout performance. Should be pretty easy given the state of the Giants secondary.

WR Jason Avant U

After two solid weeks Avant caught the only pass that came his way in last week's breakout party for Curtis. Likely a fluke not a trend. The Eagles will continue to run a lot of 3-WR sets and Avant will find matchup advantages out of the slot.

TE Matt Schobel B

Backup Schobel will fill in again for the injured Smith. So far the Giants have given up at least one touchdown to a tight end each week. Will this week make four in a row? Not likely.

New York
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Eli Manning S2

The shoulder appears fine and Manning had another efficiently average game last week. As long as Burress and Shockey can stay on the field Manning should do okay. He typically steps up for Philly. His two highest yardage games last season (371 and 282) came against them. The Eagles secondary may still be down a body or two this week, which helps his chances for success.

RB Derrick Ward S3

Ward is quietly filling in very nicely for the injured Jacobs. Through three weeks he's totaled 361 yards and scored once. Philly will present his toughest challenge to date as they rank 4th in the league against the run, allowing just 59 YPG to opposing backfields. You may want to find a better option this week since the Giants may fall behind in this game and turn away from the run. Also, the fact that backup Droughns got the goal-line carries last week was not a good sign.

WR Plaxico Burress S2

Burress' ankle remains a concern and he's reportedly seeing a specialist this week. So far he's been able to play through the nagging injury and leads the league in touchdowns along with Moss. Remains a high risk / high reward fantasy play but always poses problems for the smallish Eagles cornerbacks.

WR Amani Toomer B Possession-type numbers is about all you can expect from Toomer. If you are in an injury/bye week bind his 3-5 catches for 30-60 yards may fill the bill. Most likely not though.
TE Jeremy Shockey S2

Off to a bit of a slow start this season with just five catches in each of the first three games and no touchdowns. The Eagles are very familiar with Shockey by now and have done a decent job slowing him down in some of their meetings. He's only scored on them once in the past two years but has also put up 70 and 107 yard games in those four matchups.

 

New England (3-0) at Cincinnati (1-2)

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New England
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Tom Brady S1

This one isn't rocket science. Brady against a Cincinnati defense that's allowed 576 yards and eight touchdowns in the past two games.

RB Laurence Maroney S2

Well we are three weeks into the season now and Maroney has yet to carry more than 20 times in a game or score a touchdown. He also has no role in the passing game as he has zero catches. Meanwhile Sammy Morris is getting 11 carries a game and has scored twice on two goal-line carries. Despite that I think Maroney will perform well in this matchup. He has more upside than Morris and the Bengals are allowing a league high 5.4 YPC rushing. He'll get 100 yards again and score his first touchdown - from outside the 5-yard line of course.

RB Sammy Morris B The Patriots seem committed to getting Morris 10-12 carries a game and he's producing. His 4.6 YPC average is equal to starter Maroney's. He's also scored twice on his three goal-line carries. Look for this trend to continue but for Maroney to be the fantasy star in this matchup.
WR Randy Moss S1 Does it get any better than this? High flying offense against a terrible defense on Monday night in what should be a high scoring affair.
WR Donte' Stallworth B

With Moss, Welker and Watson running wild in the secondary there really is no need for the hamstrung Stallworth. He's an unneeded option. Even Jabar Gaffney out performed him last week.

WR Wes Welker S2

Welker continues to hang with Moss almost catch for catch. They just aren't as long and aren't reaching the end-zone. Remains a great option In PPR leagues as he'll keep cranking out fantasy points consistently every week.

TE Ben Watson S3

Watson doesn't get the looks the typical premier fantasy tight ends get each week but he's making the most of them. He's the only tight end with a touchdown in each of the first three games of the season. That's great if he can score every week. But since that's not likely his low catches and yardage will hurt on those weeks he doesn't.

Cincinnati
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Carson Palmer S1

This is a tough one. The stage is set for a big game. Monday night. Two high-powered passing games in what could be a high-scoring event. The fly in the ointment is the #2 New England pass defense. What tips the scales in Palmer's favor? The QB's New England has built those #2 stats on - Pennington, Clemens, Rivers, Losman and Edwards.

RB Rudi Johnson B

Even if Johnson guts it out and plays this week he won't be 100% and you don't want to rely on a back with a bad hammy against one of the league's toughest run defenses.

RB Kenny Watson B Watson filled in nicely for the ineffective then injured Johnson last week. He may not get the start in this matchup but it's very likely he'll get most of the action. Against a Patriots defense that's allowing just 71 yards a game to opposing backs, his value is limited. If the Patriots jump out to a lead in this game the Bengals won't be running much anyway.
WR Chad Johnson S1

This is going to be an offensive shootout and I'd want both Johnson and ...

WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh S1

... Houshmandzadeh in my lineup against the smallish and very average New England cornerbacks.

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