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Start/Bench List - Week 16
Whitney Walters
December 20, 2007
Thursday Night
Sunday Early
Sunday Early
Sunday Late
Sunday Late
Sunday Night
Saturday Night
Monday Night
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: Unclear situation / Could go either way
S3: Start 'em Tier Three (Borderline / Barely) B: Bench 'em (Bad Matchup / Too much risk)
N. Y. Jets (3-11) at Tennessee (8-6) Back to top
New York
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Chad Pennington S3

Pennington returns to the starting lineup for the Jets and faces a Titans defense that's allowed Rivers and Croyle to post decent numbers over the past two games. If you are looking for about 220 yards and a score or two on the waiver wire this week, then Pennington is likely your guy.

RB Thomas Jones S3

As expected, Jones completely tanked last week in New England. This week should be somewhat better. The Titans run defense continues its late season struggles, allowing 120 yards and a score per game over the last seven. Jones will get his 20-plus carries in this matchup and should produce. If he was more of a scoring threat he'd warrant an upgrade to S2 status this week.

WR Jerricho Cotchery S3

With Coles down for the count, Cotchery becomes the prime target in the passing game. With Pennington and his weak arm back at quarterback, Cotchery's solid short route skills will be beneficial against the average Tennessee secondary.

WR Justin McCareins B Will move into the starting lineup with Coles out, but shouldn't have much of a fantasy impact.
TE Chris Baker B

The short passing game was in full force last week with Pennington running the show on a very windy day. The result was a career high eight catches last week for Baker. Weather won't be an issue this week, but Pennington does favor going to his big tight end more than Clemens did. The Titans linebackers do an excellent job in coverage, so there's not going to be any fantasy value here.

Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Vince Young B

The rib injury didn't seem to inhibit Young last week and he had a decent day throwing the ball. He's had an up and down season that will likely continue to the end. The Jets do not present a favorable enough matchup in the passing game to warrant Young being a fantasy starter this week.

RB LenDale White S2

The bell cow of this offense now and a good bet to score each week. He'll get plenty of carries this week against the poor Jets run defense.

RB Chris Brown B Brown's role in the running game will be even more limited now with the return of Henry from his suspension.
WR Roydell Williams U

Williams two scores last week were just the seventh and eighth wideout touchdowns on the season for the Titans. His size seems to have made him a desired target for Young. He's not going to get you many catches, but his scoring ability gives him some upside as a possible sleeper start this week.

WR Justin Gage B

After a solid four week stretch, Gage has just four catches in the past two games. He continues to get as many looks from Young as any other Titan wideout, but without consistent production he's of little fantasy value.

TE Bo Scaife B

Scaife's finishing up a disappointing season just like he started it, with minimal fantasy impact.

Baltimore (4-10) at Seattle (9-5) Back to top
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Kyle Boller or
Troy Smith

Boller is suffering the effects of last week's concussion and may not play this week. If he sits the team will run with Troy Smith. Either way there is no value here for your fantasy team.

RB Willis McGahee S2

The Seahawks give up about 100 yards and a touchdown each game, so this is a decent matchup for McGahee. He hasn't scored in two weeks so he's due.

WR Derrick Mason
Mark Clayton
Devard Darling

With the shaky quarterback situation this week in a tough road game, the Ravens passing attack should be avoided.


Todd Heap

B Until he plays and finishes a game with some decent stats he's on your bench.
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Matt Hasselbeck S2

The Seahawks are maintaining their pass first mentality and Hasselbeck makes another solid fantasy start this week. The Ravens have struggled against the pass all season and Seattle will come out firing in this matchup.

RB Shaun Alexander
Maurice Morris

The Seattle running game over the past three weeks with Morris and Alexander splitting the workload has generated just 20 carries for 80 yards per game. Morris at least brings some additional receiving to the table, but overall they are not getting it done. Not a good state to be in with Baltimore coming to town. Through all the Ravens struggles this season, one thing has remained constant. Their ability to shut down the run.

WR Bobby Engram
Deion Branch
Nate Burleson

With the exception of Burleson last week, all three Seattle receivers have been productive over the past three week. All are startable this week against the shaky Baltimore secondary. In order of projected fantasy value, they'd be ranked Engram, Branch then Burleson.

TE Marcus Pollard
Will Heller

Both Pollard and Heller typically see action each week but rarely account for more than a couple of catches each.


Miami (1-13) at New England (14-0)

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Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Cleo Lemon B

About the only thing you can hope for in this matchup is some serious garbage time production.


Samkon Gado
Lorenzo Booker


Both Gado and Booker are seeing action in a committee backfield. Gado gets the most carries but Booker takes the lead on passing downs. Neither are a fantasy option in this very tough matchup.

WR Marty Booker
Derek Hagan
Ted Ginn Jr.
B If you want to take a chance on one of these guys getting you some late game garbage production, go right ahead. But the Miami passing game should be completely off limits.
TE David Martin
Justin Peelle

See above.

New England
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Tom Brady S1

About the only thing Brady owners need to worry about in this matchup is how many touchdowns he'll throw before taking a seat on the bench in a lopsided game.

RB Laurence Maroney U

Once the Patriots build there big lead, they will turn to the running game. If Maroney gets another 20-plus carries he'll be a nice bonus for a fantasy team in need. The Dolphins defensive front is decimated by injury and they are giving up a ton of yardage (over 150 per game) on the ground.

WR Randy Moss S1 The weather shouldn't be as big a factor this week, so both Moss and ...
WR Wes Welker S2

... Welker should be in your starting lineups without hesitation.

WR Donte' Stallworth B

Stallworth has just one catch in the past two games and has fallen to the #4 WR spot.

WR Jabar Gaffney U With Moss and Welker's playing time possibly limited once the Patriots pull away, Gaffney could see some extended playing time as a #1 or #2 WR in the second half of this matchup. If you are looking for a third or fourth wide receiver with some upside for your fantasy lineup this week, Gaffney should fit the bill.
TE Ben Watson B

Watson's pace has slowed over the second half of the season as he's only getting 2-3 catches a game and has scored only once in the past nine games.


Washington (7-7) at Minnesota (8-6)

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Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Todd Collins S3

The Vikings pass defense has shown some improvement of late, but they are still struggling overall. This is a decent matchup for Collins and there are enough weapons in the Washington passing attack for him to have some success throwing the ball Sunday night.

RB Clinton Portis S3 After not looking good for a couple of weeks, Portis regained his form last week with a big game against the Giants. It will be tough sledding this week however against the league's top run stopping defense. Look for the Redskins to work Portis more in the short passing game in an attempt to get him some room to run.
RB Ladell Betts B Scored his second touchdown of the season last week but still plays only a minor role in the offense.
WR Santana Moss S2

Moss has managed only three catches in Collins two games at quarterback, but he's been the most targeted wideout and should post some decent numbers in his matchup this week with a suspect Vikings secondary that could be without their best player, CB Winfield.

WR Antwaan Randle El B

Randle El has been very unproductive over the past three weeks and his hamstring injury seems to be causing him problems. With two zero catch games in the past three, he's just not a reliable fantasy option. Beyond Moss and Cooley, you just can't expect enough production in the Redskins passing game to push Randle El to starter status.

TE Chris Cooley S2

Remains the most consistent part of the Washington passing attack and QB Collins relies heavily on him. Due to Collins weaker arm, the short-to-medium passing game is more prominent.

Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Tarvaris Jackson B

After showing some improvement, Jackson took a step back last week with another shaky performance. There's just nothing here for fantasy owners, regardless of matchup.

RB Chester Taylor S3

The Vikings didn't get Taylor much work last week (only five carries) and the matchup with Washington this week isn't a good one. It's unlikely he'll see so few carries this week, but the production won't come easy. Very borderline starter.

RB Adrian Peterson S1

Even with the Bears doing everything possible to stop Peterson last week, he still managed 95 total yards and two touchdowns. This week's matchup with the strong Washington run defense is tougher, but the upside with AD is just too great. He's a stud start every week.

WR Bobby Wade
Robert Ferguson
Troy Williamson

With Rice out due to an ankle sprain, the fantasy options in the Vikings WR corps completely dry up. Minnesota's passing attack is very limited and the limited completions are spread around to multiple receivers.

TE Vishante Shiancoe B

Has had two or fewer catches in each of the last seven games. Plays a small role in a very limited passing attack.


Denver (6-8) at San Diego (9-5)

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Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Jay Cutler S3

Cutler is finishing out the season strong and put up 232 yards on San Diego in the lopsided loss in week five. Despite this tough prime-time rematch, the young gunslinger has enough weapons in the air attack to get the job done for fantasy owners.

RB Travis Henry B

Henry continues to split time with Young and doesn't look 100% back from the knee injury. Young looks quicker and stronger running the ball. Unlike in years past, the Chargers can be run on. But with only a limited number of carries, neither Henry or ...

RB Selvin Young U

... Young make very good starts this week. Of the two, Young at least has a shot at breaking off a long run or even a score. So there is some upside here.

WR Javon Walker B Playing, but Walker is still not 100% and isn't a fantasy option at this point.
WR Brandon Marshall S2

Marshall has 21 catches in the past two games and has become a constant threat in the Denver passing game. He went 7-for-72 in the week five matchup with San Diego, and he should match or better those numbers Monday night.

WR Brandon Stokley X

With a week off to rest his knee, Stokley is expected back in the lineup Monday night. How effective he'll be is unknown and most fantasy teams would be better off looking for a more reliable option this week.

TE Tony Scheffler S2

With Stokley out of the mix last week, Scheffler had a career game. Stokley may return for this game, but Scheffler should be able to manage another strong performance as he'll get most of the playing time now that fellow TE Graham is out. The Chargers allow 50 YPG to the tight end position.

San Diego
Pos Player SBC Comments
QB Philip Rivers B

Rivers' continues to struggle and the Chargers are not asking much from him now. Expect limited production from him Monday night against a Denver defense that still holds its own against the pass thanks to the fine CB play and a decent pass rush.

RB LaDainian Tomlinson S1 San Diego finally wised up and turned the offense back over to their greatest weapon. The Broncos know LT well and will be geared up to stop him. But it won't matter.
WR Vincent Jackson   B

Jackson did score three weeks ago, but his six catches over the past three games is a strong indicator of his lack of use in the passing game now that Chambers is established. Also draws the tougher matchup with CB Bailey.

WR Chris Chambers S3

Chambers has established himself as the primary wideout target down field and draws the better matchup Monday night with CB Bly. Should be able to squeeze out borderline startable fantasy numbers this week.

TE Antonio Gates S1

In Gates' last two games against Denver he's totaled 217 yards and three touchdowns.

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