Fantasy Football Matchups

Fantasy Football Matchups: Week 4

Author: Chris Dale

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Week 4 is upon us, and there are loads of question marks with injuries and inconsistent play from several fantasy stars.  Rookies are making more of an impact than ever this year.  Coaching changes and free agents have produced mixed results.  Here’s my crack at making some sort of sense out of it all so you can have that edge you need to win your matchups.  Feedback is encouraged, so whether you think I’m a prophet or a fraud, I’d love to hear from you!

 

? Denotes Injury Concern

 

pit_logo-50x50hou_logo-50x50Pittsburgh at Houston

 

After shutting out the Seahawks, Pittsburgh needed a late field goal to beat the hapless Colts as they continue to befuddle fans with their on and off play.  Rashard Mendenhall had just 37 yards on 18 carries.  While he should do better against a flimsy Houston defense, the Steelers will most likely be playing from behind, limiting Mendenhall’s upside this week.  Mike Wallace has gone for over 100 yards each of the first 3 games, including the loss to the Ravens, so expect nothing different this week.  Ben Roethlisberger should have a better outing than last week (5 turnovers is hard to top, plus he’ll most likely be involved in a shootout.  Mike Wallace has twice as many yards as any other receiver on the Steelers, and Emmanuel Sanders is the only receiver other than Wallace with a TD reception.  Until some sort of clear #2 option materializes, I would stay away.

 

I picked Houston to win last week away at New Orleans, and it took Drew Brees mounting a 21 point comeback to prevent that.  Matt Schaub looked more like what we expected from last year, throwing for over 350 yards and 3 TDs.  Owen Daniels played well also.  It goes without saying that Andre Johnson had a good game, although he was held without a TD.  James Casey came out of nowhere to register 5 receptions for 126 yards and a TD.  In some formats he has a rare RB/TE designation, so he could be an interesting filler for your bench.  Play Johnson and Daniels as you usually would.  In bigger news, Arian Foster is slated to start, and from all accounts is itching to pick up where he left off last year.  The Steelers are tough to run on, but his pass-catching out of the backfield should make him a solid play, given that he is, in fact, ready to play.  Ben Tate, thanks for the three solid weeks, but I think your time is over.

 

Winner: Houston

 

***** Mike Wallace, Andre Johnson, Arian Foster (?)

 

**** Matt Schaub, Ben Roethlisberger, Rashard Mendenhall

 

*** Owen Daniels

 

** Emmanuel Sanders

 

* Ben Tate, James Casey

 

no_logo-50x50jac_logo-50x50New Orleans at Jacksonville

 

The Saints have been playing great, and should only get better with the return of Marques Colston.  His return makes Robert Meachem and Devery Henderson shaky plays from here on out. Lance Moore has a solid place in the offense, and gets lots of redzone targets.  Jimmy Graham receives constant love from Brees, even in this offense that shares the ball so much.  Drew Brees will continue to be, well, Drew Brees, so fantasy owners can sit back and enjoy the ride.  Darren Sproles has been a PPR beast out of the backfield, and last week he added two carries for 35 yards and a TD.  He is the only RB in this platoon who you should start.

 

Blaine Gabbert performed decently last week, despite the fact that the game took place in what probably could have qualified as a monsoon.  This week against a weak Saint secondary he should have a chance to show why he was considered in some circles to be the best QB in this rookie class.  Mike Thomas looks like Gabbert’s favorite target, so his value may jump enough to make him a viable WR3 this week.  As always, roll with MJD.

 

Winner: New Orleans

 

***** Drew Brees, Jimmy Graham, Maurice Jones-Drew

 

**** Lance Moore, Darren Sproles, Marques Colston

 

*** Mike Thomas

 

** Robert Meachem, Devery Henderson, Mark Ingram, Blaine Gabbert

 

* Pierre Thomas

 

 

car_logo-50x50chi_logo-50x50Carolina at Chicago

 

Chicago will be looking to rebound after a brutal loss to Green Bay, and the Panthers are just what the doctor ordered.  The Panthers have the highest QB rating allowed, and have only sacked the QB five times this year. Jay Cutler can definitely sleep easier this week, as can any fantasy owners that need to start him.  Matt Forte should also rebound after a lackluster week.  He had just two yards on nine rushing attempts, along with 7 receptions for 80 yards.  Forte should have a touchdown this week, along with increased all-around yardage.  Johnny Knox is always a deep threat, and the Panthers have given up four passing plays of 40+ yards.  One of the big surprises for the Bears has been Dane Sanzenbacher, who has scored 2 TDs thus far, and could be a sleeper worth considering.

 

Cam Newton finally came back down to earth last week, partially due to the heavens opening up during the game.  Newton should go over 200 yards and 2 TDs this week due to the combination of a good Chicago run defense (have not allowed a rushing touchdown yet) and a poor Carolina rushing game (Newton leads the team with 98 rushing yards and 2 TDs).  It goes without saying that its time to cut your losses if you own either Jonathan Stewart or DeAngelo Williams.  Under no circumstances should you bench Steve Smith, despite his 15 yard effort last week.  Greg Olsen is a solid play this week, as the Bears have allowed more than 70 yards to a TE every week so far.  Jeremy Shockey could also have a good game, but Olsen is the TE to own here.

 

Winner: Chicago

 

***** Matt Forte, Steve Smith

 

**** Jay Cutler, Cam Newton

 

*** Johnny Knox, Greg Olsen, Chicago defense

 

** Jeremy Shockey

 

* Dane Sanzenbacher

 

 

det_logo-50x50dal_logo-50x50Detroit at Dallas

 

Dallas pulled off one of the ugliest wins I’ve ever seen last week.  Lots of botched snaps, receivers lining up on the wrong side, running the wrong routes….it was bad.  There is absolutely no way they beat Detroit unless they fix, well, the entire offense.  Tony Romo is a shaky play in my books this week.  Ndamukong Suh and the Lions D will be gunning for his ribs, and Suh scares me much more than DeAngelo Hall ever could.  Dez Bryant seemed almost full strength against Washington, and the Lions CBs have had trouble containing big wideouts this year.  Dez should go for 80+ yards and a TD.  Jason Witten had a surprisingly quiet day (6 receptions for 60 yards) considering Miles Austin was out (and will be out until after the bye).  Both the Lions and Cowboys have been good at containing TEs, so don’t expect big days from Witten, Brandon Pettigrew, or Tony Scheffler.  Felix Jones had a very solid game last week, but re-aggravated his shoulder in the 4th quarter, so monitor his status closely.  If he can’t go, DeMarco Murray and Tashard Choice would get the carries, although neither has shown much promise so far.  Kevin Ogletree has lost the trust of Tony Romo after numerous mistakes and drops last week, as well as a fumble.  Even with Austin out, Ogletree is a very weak play here.

 

“Stafford to Johnson” might one of the most common phrases we will hear this season.  They have fantastic chemistry, and both are must starts regardless of matchup.  Johnson is leading the team in receptions, yards and touchdowns (6 TDs on 16 recpetions!!).  Nate Burleson continues to get several targets a game along with TE Brandon Pettigrew.  The Lions have expressed confidence in Titus Young as well, who has looked very promising.  Javhid Best is a mediocre play this week against a great Dallas run defense, but should still be playable with the number of receptions he gets out of the backfield.

 

Winner: Detroit

 

***** Calvin Johnson, Matthew Stafford, Dez Bryant

 

**** Jason Witten

 

*** Nate Burleson, Brandon Pettigrew, Tony Romo, Jahvid Best

 

** Titus Young, Felix Jones (?)

 

* Laurent Robinson, Kevin Ogletree, Tony Scheffler

 

 

min_logo-50x50kc_logo-50x50Minnesota at Kansas City

 

Matt Cassel had a surprisingly good game last week, making some small strides towards silencing his critics.  Chiefs fans probably still want their team to take the “Suck for Luck” approach, but that remains to be seen.  Cassel finally connected with Dwayne Bowe last week, and Bowe figures to be the focal point of this offense with Jamaal Charles lost for the year.  Dexter McCluster is a solid PPR play, leading the team in receptions as well as rushing yards.  Thomas Jones will continue to get the most rushing touches, and so both he and McCluster could have a great day against a Vikings defense that has given up the 2nd most fantasy points to RBs this year.  Steve Breaston has been thoroughly under-whelming with just 88 yards over three games.  Leonard Pope, starting in place of the injured Tony Moeaki, has the 3rd most targets on the team, and could be a useful endzone target.

 

This week at Kansas City, don’t expect Adrian Peterson to be complaining about being the “highest paid decoy” in the NFL.  The Vikings will shove All-Day down Kansas City’s throat all day.  I predict 100+ yards and 2 TDs.  Percy Harvin could have a decent day if Brandon Flowers, the Chiefs’ best CB, sits out with an ankle injury.  Michael Jenkins currently leads the team in receptions and yards, although I foresee Percy Harvin claiming those categories soon. Visanthe Shiancoe has just 4 catches over 3 games, so if you own him I would go pick up a Scott Chandler, Fred Davis, James Casey, Ed Dickson, Evan Moore, etc….you get the point, lots of better options.  Donovan McNabb has rebounded from a miserable week 1 performance, but again, there are PLENTY of better fantasy options.  Interesting statistic: In 180 minutes of play, the Vikings have led for over 173 minutes.  Look for them to finally come away with a victory this week.

 

Winner: Minnesota

 

***** Adrian Peterson, Dwayne Bowe

 

**** Dexter McCluster

 

*** Thomas Jones, Percy Harvin, Michael Jenkins

 

** Matt Cassel, Leonard Pope

 

* Donovan McNabb, Steve Breaston, Visanthe Shiancoe

 

 

buf_logo-50x50cin_logo-50x50Buffalo at Cincinnati

 

It is hard to pick against the Bills, in real life or fantasy, right now.  While the Pats did hold Fred Jackson to under 100 yards rushing, he finished with 74 yards and a TD, along with 87 yards receiving.  Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for over 350 yards, with 3 other players going over 80 yards receiving (Stevie Johnson, David Nelson, and Donald Jones).  Scott Chandler only managed 10 yards, but has now scored a TD in all 3 games this season.  The Bengals have played pretty good defense so far, but Fitzpatrick, Johnson and Jackson are all must-starts in my book.  Expect a drop off in yards for Fitzpatrick this week, because there is little chance of a shootout in this matchup.  The Bengals offense just doesn’t have enough weapons.  Fred Jackson may be held under 100 yards rushing again, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see some similar numbers in the passing game this week for him.  Chandler is a great red-zone target, but doesn’t seem to get much use elsewhere on the field.  He’s a viable backup if you lost Aaron Hernandez or Antonio Gates, but could be a dud if he fails to reach the endzone again.

 

The biggest news here is the Cedric Benson will be serving a 3 game suspension starting this week, so Bernard Scott is the pick-up here if you are in need of a RB.  Andy Dalton should have to throw a lot to try to keep up with this high-powered Bills offense, but remember that this defense intercepted Tom Brady 4 times last week.  Let be honest though, unless you are in a ridiculously deep, 2 QB league, there is no reason for Dalton to be in your lineup.  A.J. Green should have a much better game than last week, again because the Bengals will be playing from behind all game.  Andre Caldwell has taken the starting spot from Jerome Simpson, who may very well be going to jail for a long time.  Jermaine Gresham continues to under-perform.  Following Sunday’s game, he said “Right now, I feel like I am just hurting the team,” so at least he admits it.

 

Winner – Buffalo

 

***** Fred Jackson

 

**** Ryan Fitzpatrick, Stevie Johnson

 

*** A.J. Green, David Nelson

 

** Bernard Scott, Scott Chandler, Andre Caldwell

 

* Donald Jones, Jermaine Gresham

 

 

ten_logo-50x50cle_logo-50x50Tennessee at Cleveland

 

OMG, they killed Kenny!!  With Kenny Britt out of the picture, Nate Washington, who is already having a great year, will be Matt Hasselbeck’s main man.  Pick him up, regardless of whether or not you need a replacement for Britt.  This week may not be the best week to play him though, as he will be matched up against Joe Haden, one of the better cover CBs in the league.  Jared Cook could see more targets as a result of Washington being guarded closely.  The loss of Britt should serve as the extra push Tennessee needed to finally get the running game going.  Chris Johnson is averaging an abysmal 2.1 yards per carry, and has just 98 yards rushing.  The Titans will probably go to Johnson early and often.

 

Peyton Hillis disappointed many not-so-diligent owners, coming down with strep throat late Friday, and did not play.  He practiced Wednesday, so should be good to go this week.  Its not a good week to be coming back from an illness, as the Titan’s defense has been dominant.  Montario Hardesty will also steal some carries from Hillis as the Browns ease him back up to full speed.  The Titans pass defense has been great as well, so its hard to be excited about anyone involved in the Browns passing game.

 

Winner: Tennessee

 

***** Chris Johnson

 

**** Peyton Hillis, Titans defense

 

*** Matt Hasselbeck, Nate Washington, Browns defense

 

** Jared Cook, Benjamin Watson, Mohamed Massaquoi

 

* Colt McCoy, Montario Hardesty, Greg Little, Evan Moore

 

 

was_logo-50x50stl_logo-50x50Washington at St. Louis

 

Steven Jackson was used sparingly last game, but should get the green light this week against a Redskins defense that has allowed more than 5 yard per carry on the ground. Cadillac Williams hurt himself last week, so if he can’t go, Jerious Norwood would be the one to fill in if S-Jax need a break.  St. Louis needs to turn this season around in a hurry, since they are probably the only 0-3 team that has no need for Andrew Luck.  Unfortunately, with Danny Amendola still out, the Rams have struggled mightily, especially when being blitzed, allowing Sam Bradford to be sacked often.  Amendola practiced Thursday with a heavy brace, but it remains to be seen whether or not he plays this weekend.  Brandon Gibson might be worth your time from a fantasy perspective, but just barely.  Mike Sims-Walker and Danario Alexander are also in that gray area.  Lance Kendricks has followed a fantastic preseason with just 4 catches over 3 games.

 

Rex Grossman continues to maintain fantasy relevance, despite his awful hit or miss fantasy history.  Against a pretty sad Rams defense, he should continue to be serviceable.  Santana Moss is still the main guy in the passing, but Jabar Gaffney is producing well, especially if Anthony Armstrong out with a hamstring injury.  This might be a good week to stay away from Fred Davis and Chris Cooley, because the TE position has been the one position that the Rams defend well.  Tim Hightower is a must-start, as the Rams have given up a league-high 399 yards rushing.  Roy Helu could also have a good game, as coach Mike Shanahan seems to go with whoever has the hot hand on any given day.

 

Winner: Washington

 

***** Tim Hightower, Stephen Jackson (?)

 

**** Santana Moss

 

*** Rex Grossman, Jabar Gaffney, Danny Amendola (?)

 

** Sam Bradford, Brandon Gibson, Fred Davis, Cadillac Williams (?), Roy Helu

 

* Mike-Sims Walker, Lance Kendricks, Chris Cooley, Dantario Alexander

 

 

sf_logo-50x50phi_logo-50x50San Francisco at Philadelphia

 

The 49ers have the fewest yards gained on offense this year (read: start Philly defense if you have them).  Needless to say, there haven’t been many valuable fantasy players here.  Vernon Davis had a great game last week (8 receptions for 114 yards), and should have another good game against Philly.  No one else involved in the 49ers passing game is worth owning, let alone playing aginst the Eagles corners.  Frank Gore is battling an ankle injury and only gaining 2.5 yards per carry, and Kendall Hunter is lurking on the depth chart.  Hunter could be a nice pickup if Gore re-aggravates his ankle.

 

Michael Vick has said that there is a “100% chance” he’ll start this week, so good news for Vick owners.  The real question is how long he’ll stay in the game.  The 49ers D can put pressure on the QB, and Vick seems one good hit away from an extended period on the sideline.  Jeremy Maclin has been nursing a hamstring injury, so monitor his status closely.  DeSean Jackson will have a good game (great if Maclin doesn’t play), and Steve Smith seems to get better each week.  It goes without saying that you start LeSean McCoy no matter what, even against the 49ers strong run defense.

 

Winner: Philadelphia

 

***** Jeremy Maclin (?), LeSean McCoy

 

**** DeSean Jackson, Vernon Davis, Philadelphia defense

 

*** Michael Vick (?)

 

** Steve Smith, Frank Gore

 

* Kendall Hunter, Jason Avant

 

 

atl_logo-50x50sea_logo-50x50Atlanta at Seattle

 

If Sidney Rice is available in your league, go get him.  He and Tavaris Jackson have a long history together, and in one game Rice is tied for first with 8 receptions, and is 2 yards shy of leading the team in receiving yards as well.  Marshawn Lynch might end up doing a little bit better as a result of defenses keying in on Rice, but is yet to show he can be anything other than a bye-week plug.

 

Michael Turner will probably struggle this week against a stout Seahawks defense.  Roddy White and Julio Jones on the other hand, will be more than the Seattle CBs can handle.  Matt Ryan should prey on the Seattle secondary early and often.  Ageless wonder Tony Gonzalez is a good start here too, and is one of Matt Ryan’s favorite endzone targets.

 

Winner: Atlanta

 

***** Roddy White, Sidney Rice

 

**** Julio Jones, Matt Ryan

 

*** Tony Gonzalez

 

** Marshawn Lynch, Tavaris Jackson

 

* Zach Miller, Doug Baldwin, Mike Williams

 

 

nyg_logo-50x50ari_logo-50x50NY Giants at Arizona

 

The Giants surprised everyone by limping into Philadelphia and laying a beatdown on Vick and the Eagles.  Eli Manning was the biggest surprise, throwing for 4 TDs with a limited Hakeem Nicks and without Mario Manningham.  Both Nicks and Manningham should play this week, but monitor both since they are currently questionable.  If both do play, Victor Cruz, who had a fantastic game last week, would return to the bench.  Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs are playing great, contributing to both the running and passing game.

 

The absence of Beanie Wells really hurt the Cardinals last week.  He was limited in practice on Thursday, and looks like he will be another player that you have to keep track of until the last second.  Larry Fitzgerald will get his, regardless of matchup.  The rest of the Cardinals passing game is more up-in-the-air (ok….pun intended).  Early Doucet is the clear #2 here, but had just two catches for 20 yards in week 2.  Jeff King seemed to be the TE to own over the first two weeks, scoring a TD in both games.  Then in week 3, King didn’t have a single catch, while Todd Heap brought in six catches for 60 yards.  Kevin Kolb is known for using his TEs extensively; we just wish he would tell us which one!  Kolb will probably use the TEs even more this week, throwing lots of quick passes to avoid the Giants pass rush.  (Usi Umenyiora practiced this week, but it isn’t clear if he will play just yet).

 

Winner: NY Giants

 

***** Larry Fitzgerald, Hakeem Nicks (?)

 

**** Ahmad Bradshaw, Mario Manningham (?) Eli Manning

 

*** NY Giants defense, Beanie Wells, Brandon Jacobs

 

** Todd Heap, Kevin Kolb, Early Doucet, Jeff King

 

* Victor Cruz

 

 

ne_logo-50x50oak_logo-50x50New England at Oakland

 

The Bills handed New England a stunning loss last week, in which Tom Brady threw 4 interceptions.  That being said, NE has an amazing record in games following a loss, so expect a full recovery this week.  This week’s matchup should be similar to both the Pats-Bills game last week and the Bill-Raiders game the week before, so start anyone you have on either offense (except Chad Ochocinco, of course).  Wes Welker leads the league with an incredible 458 yards receiving over 3 games, and is tied for 3rd with 4 TD receptions.  Rob Gronkowski is 7th in the league in receiving yards and 2nd in TD receptions.  Aaron Hernandez is trying to come back from injury this week, but monitor him closely as he is very questionable.  If he gets the green light, play him, as he has 165 yards and 2 TDs in 2 games.  Deion Branch should reach the endzone soon, and this could be the week.  As far as the running game goes, the platoon is making it tough to see a solid play here.  BenJarvus Green-Ellis is still the starter, and has the only rushing TDs, but Danny Woodhead and Stevan Ridley continue to get touches.

 

Darren McFadden ran for 171 yards last week against the Jets.  He will definitely break the Pats’ streak of not allowing RBs to top 100 yards.  Denarius Moore is finding more and more ways to impress.  Pick him up and play him this week against a NE defense that has allowed 23 pass plays over 20 yards; you will not be disappointed.  Jason Campbell could be relevant this week due to the shootout that will inevitably occur.  Jacoby Ford and Kevin Boss could see more looks as well.  Michael Bush continues to poach TDs from Darren McFadden, but is probably not a good play this week.

 

Winner: New England

 

***** Tom Brady, Wes Welker, Rob Gronkowski, Darren McFadden

 

**** Denarius Moore

 

*** Jason Campbell, BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Deion Branch

 

** Jacoby Ford, Kevin Boss, Michael Bush, Danny Woodhead

 

* Steven Ridley, Chad Ochocinco

 

 

den_logo-50x50gb_logo-50x50Denver at Green Bay

 

I had a feeling Jermichael Finley would break the plane last week, and boy was I right.  After a disappointing first two weeks, Finley went off and showcased his ridiculous upside.  Barring an injury, Finley should provide a nice boost to fantasy owners in the weeks to come.  Greg Jennings catches anything thrown in his area code, and has been the only WR who looks as dominant as Calvin Johnson thus far.  Jordy Nelson had a slow game 3, but should still be heavily involved this week.  Aaron Rodgers looks like the MVP right now.  He has fewer yards and TDs than Brady, but also has just one INT to Brady’s five.  Ryan Grant and James Starks have the same number of carries and almost the same number of yards, but Grant was the clear #1 RB last week.  Coach Mike McCarthy also mentioned that Grant is the type of back who thrives with more carries, so good news for Grant owners, bad news for Starks owners.  Grant is nursing a kidney injury though, so monitor his status closely.

 

No running back has gained more than 40 yards rushing against Green Bay this year.  Knowshown Moreno practiced fully on Thursday, but this is NOT the week to play him.  Even against an easier defense next week, it looks like Willis McGahee has earned himself at least a 50/50 split between the two.  Kyle Orton will have 250+, multiple TD game against a leaky Packers secondary.  Brandon Lloyd and Eric Decker will be the recipients of most of Orton’s love, so play both if you have them.

 

Winner: Green Bay

 

***** Aaron Rodgers, Jermichael Finley, Greg Jennings

 

**** Kyle Orton, Brandon Lloyd

 

*** Eric Decker, Ryan Grant, Jordy Nelson

 

** James Starks, Willis McGahee

 

* Knowshon Moreno

UDPATE: Ryan Grant will not play this week, so James Starks will get the start.

 

 

mia_logo-50x50sd_logo-50x50Miami at San Diego

 

Ryan Matthews stole the show last week, helping the Chargers overcome two interceptions thrown by Phillip Rivers.  Rivers should have a nice rebound game against Miami.  Vincent Jackson, Malcolm Floyd, and even Randy McMichael (filling in for Antonio Gates) are all great starts this week.  Jackson is dealing with abdominal pain and Floyd is recovering from a groin injury, but both should play.  There is a VERY outside chance that Antonio Gates plays this week, but I don’t see it happening.  Pick up McMichael, because Miami has allowed more fantasy points to TEs than any other team this year.  Mike Tolbert is dealing with a calf injury, but Matthews seems to have secured the starting job, as well as the goal line carries.

 

Chad Henne will continue to force-feed Brandon Marshall, so don’t let the Chargers defense scare you if you own Marshall.  The rest of the Dolphins are probably not worth starting.  Davone Bess and Brian Hartline are competing for the #2 WR spot, but have only one TD between the two of them.  Daniel Thomas has for all intents and purposes won the starting job, but could be in for a rough day.  Reggie Bush might be back to returning punts, since the Dolphins have signed ex-Texan Steve Slaton.

 

Winner: Chargers

 

***** Vincent Jackson (?), Ryan Matthews

 

**** Philip Rivers, Brandon Marshall

 

*** Malcolm Floyd (?), Randy McMichael

 

** Daniel Thomas, Chad Henne, Mike Tolbert

 

* Davone Bess, Brian Hartline, Anthony Fasano, Reggie Bush

 

UPDATE: Daniel Thomas is out, so Reggie Bush and Steve Slaton will get the carries.

 

 

nyj_logo-50x50bal_logo-50x50NY Jets at Baltimore

 

After watching Darren McFadden rip through the Jets defense like a hot knife through butter, I see no reason why Ray Rice won’t have similar success.  Torrey Smith was a flash in the pan last week, nothing more.  The Jets secondary will not allow him to go off, and then he’ll be back on the bench once Lee Evans is healthy.  I’d be surprised if he goes over 50 yards this week.  Anquan Boldin will be spending the day on Revis Island, so if you have other options, now would be a good time to consider them.  Ed Dickson will probably be Joe Flacco’s go-to guy this week when dealing with the blitzing Jets.

 

Santonio Holmes is unhappy about his involvement in the offense, so I think Mark Sanchez will try to make him happy this week.  Plaxico Burress has been productive in the endzone, but Dustin Keller will continue to be Sanchez’s favorite target.  Shonn Greene might as well not even put his pads on for this one.  LaDainian Tomlinson could have more luck against the Ravens by catching some passes out of the backfield.  Neither is a good play, so I hope you have some backups.

 

Winner: Baltimore

 

***** Ray Rice

 

**** Santonio Holmes

 

*** Mark Sanchez, Dustin Keller, Baltimore D, NY Jets D, Ed Dickson

 

** Joe Flacco, Anquan Boldin, Plaxico Burress

 

* Shonn Greene, LaDainian Tomlinson, Torrey Smith

 

 

ind_logo-50x50tb_logo-50x50Indianapolis at Tampa Bay

 

Curtis Painter will probably be the starter this week.  I almost feel like I don’t need to say anything else about the Colts.  If you don’t have a powerhouse defense on your fantasy team, just go pick up whoever the Colts are playing that week.  I doubt even Mr. Dependable Reggie Wayne will have a meaningful fantasy day.  Joseph Addai could be worth playing, as the Colts will try to avoid throwing if they have to.  Inexperienced QBs tend to look to their TEs often, but I still find it hard to imagine Dallas Clark having more than 50 yards.

 

Tampa Bay will deploy LeGarrette Blount to pound the Colts into submission.  Josh Freeman and Mike Williams ought to use this defense to get their confidence back, and I expect a TD between the two of them.  Earnest Graham has almost twice as many receptions as anyone else on the team, all out of the backfield, and the third most receiving yards.  Preston Parker had a strong first two games, but had just one reception for 11 yards last week against the Falcons.  Neither he nor Kellen Winslow have shown themselves to be dependable fantasy options.

 

Winner: Tampa Bay

 

***** LeGarrette Blount, Tampa Bay defense

 

**** Mike Williams

 

*** Josh Freeman, Joseph Addai

 

** Reggie Wayne, Kellen Winslow, Dallas Clark, Earnest Graham

 

* Curtis Painter, Preston Parker

 

? denotes injury concern

 

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