Jeff Garcia, Buccaneers – Garcia should be firmly established as the Bucs’ No. 1 quarterback, even if Brian Griese is healthy enough to return this week. Should that truly be the case, look for massive numbers from Garcia this week against a Dallas defense that is decimated, dazed and confused. Basically, a defense that looks absolutely horrible.
Kyle Orton, Bears – You keep waiting for this guy to come back to earth, but it’s not happening. 283-yard, two-TD days like he had against Minnesota are becoming almost commonplace for the surprise breakout quarterback of 2008. The Bears are on bye this week, but don’t hesitate to put Orton in your starting lineup in Week 8 at home against the hapless Lions.
Matt Schaub, Texans – This is the Matt Schaub who was being touted as a super sleeper in the preseason; solid for sure, and spectacular at other times. Schaub was more on the “solid” side against Detroit with 267 yards and two TDs. This week (and yes, remember the Texans are not on bye) against the Bengals he may be on the “solid” side again, since the Texans will likely do most of their damage on the ground, but Schaub will still be worth a start.
Trent Edwards, Bills – Edwards rebounded nicely from a concussion with 261 yards and a TD against San Diego. Those numbers weren’t as high as you would like against a Charger pass defense that has struggled most of the season, but the reason he’s on the list this week is he definitively answered any health questions that may have been hanging over his head (no pun intended). He has some decent matchups ahead (Week 11 vs. Cleveland and Week 12 at Kansas City come to mind), so you can feel confident slotting Edwards into your lineup should the need arise.
Jake Delhomme, Panthers –Delhomme put up another solid day with 195 yards and two scores against the Saints. He’s thrown for two TDs in three out of his last four games, and averaged 241.6 yards in those games. The exception was a three-interception clunker against Tampa Bay in Week 6. Overall Delhomme is definitely worth starting, especially this week at home against Arizona.
Brad Johnson, Cowboys – Wow. Talk about a team in crisis. As long as Johnson is in, and he has to play behind an offensive line that is, to put it kindly, playing like an overrated, pathetic group of fat guys, you probably won’t be able to count on numbers any better than the 234 yards, one TD and three interceptions he put up against St. Louis. You’d have to be really desperate to even consider playing Johnson against Tampa Bay this week.
Drew Brees, Saints – Maybe this is just a knee-jerk reaction, but Sunday’s outing against the Panthers (231 yards, no TDs, two interceptions) could be a sign of things to come for Brees. Without the threat Reggie Bush poses catching balls out of the backfield, Brees’ numbers will suffer. Don’t bench Brees unless he has a really bad matchup like he did against Carolina, but you definitely should dial down your expectations until he proves otherwise.
Peyton Manning, Colts – Cold water was splashed on every Manning owner who assumed No. 18 was back to his dominating self. He threw for only 229 yards, had no TDs, and threw two picks against the Packers. Manning isn’t a no-brainer starter as of now, and there’s no way anyone would have thought that going into this season. Week 8 finds Manning on the road on Monday Night Football against the extremely tough Tennessee defense. You’ll probably be better served going in another direction.
Derek Anderson, Browns – Anderson was headed for some truly pathetic numbers in Week 7 before rebounding somewhat in the fourth quarter. Still, he ended up with only 136 yards and a score thanks to several drops from Braylon Edwards and others. What’s really disturbing is this happened to an offense that looked like it had found it’s 2007 form the week before against a very good Giants defense. Which version of the Cleveland offense will show up against Jacksonville – the Jekyll or the Hyde? Hopefully your lineup is deep enough to where you don’t have to rely on Anderson, because he won’t be worth starting consideration until that offense performs well on a consistent basis.
Brodie Croyle, Chiefs – He’s out for the season with a knee injury. The saddest thing is, unless you’re a Kansas City fan you probably didn’t know he was even playing. The Chiefs have scored a laughable 75 points through six games.