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Week 4 Watch List

September 29, 2009 Leave a comment

Here are some players to keep an eye on this week. If they continue to perform, add them to your roster.

QB Mark Sanchez (NYJ): His numbers are not jaw-dropping, but he is fairly consistent and plays on a team with a good defense and good running game. Which makes him a solid play if your starter is on bye or injured.

QB Chad Henne (MIA): Not sure how good he will be, but he is a starter now that QB Chad Pennington is done for the year, so give him some thought if you are desperate.

QB Josh Johnson (TB): It looks like QB Byron Leftwich has been benched. I doubt Johnson will do much, but you never know.

RB Jerome Harrison (CLE): I am a little disappointed that RB James Davis did not get more chances while RB Jamal Lewis was out with injury. Not sure if Harrison is the RB2 in CLE or if Davis is still dealing with injury issues of his own. Either way, as long as Lewis is slowed by injuries, keep an eye on both Harrison and Davis to see who gets the touches.

WR Keenan Burton (STL): I was big on WR Laurent Robinson, but now that he is on IR, someone else has to step up. And that guy could be Burton.

WR Mike Wallace (PIT): PIT cannot run the ball, so they will have to pass. And Wallace has looked pretty good as the third option. Keep an eye on him.

WR Andre Caldwell (CIN): I expected WR Chris Henry to be more productive, but he seems to be limited by injuries. Which has opened the door for Caldwell.

WR Chaz Schilens (OAK): He could play this week. Although with how poorly the fat caveman is throwing the ball, it might not matter. But keep an eye on him. He is tall and lanky, so maybe he can catch some of those errant passes.

TE Vernon Davis (SF): Davis had a big game against MIN and has done alright otherwise this year. Keep an eye on him and see if they continue to go to him in the red zone.

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Week 3 Injury Update

September 28, 2009 1 comment

Here are some key injury updates…

QB Chad Pennington (MIA): Pennington (shoulder) could be done for the year. QB Chad Henne will likely take over, and could be a decent QB2 against favorable matchups. But I would wait and see what he does.

QB Marc Bulger (STL): Bulger (shoulder) could miss some time. If he is out, QB Kyle Boller will start in his place. Boller actually looked alright against GB.

RB Frank Gore (SF): Gore (ankle) could miss a couple weeks. Go get RB Glenn Coffee now.

RB Kevin Smith (DET): It sounds like Smith (shoulder) should be okay, but if you own him, consider adding RB Maurice Morris.

RB Brian Westbrook (PHI): Westbrook (ankle) missed this week’s game with an ankle injury, and it is not clear when he will be back. Go get RB LeSean McCoy now.

RB Marion Barber (DAL): Barber (thigh) is inactive for the game tonight against CAR. Watch to see how DAL uses RB Felix Jones and RB Tashard Choice tonight, because Barber could miss another game or two.’

RB Jamal Lewis (CLE): Lewis was out this week. RB James Harrison got most of the carries in his absence, with RB James Davis getting some touches, as well. But neither really did much. And I would probably avoid any CLE players for the time being, given their woes on offense.

RB Willie Parker (PIT): Parker (toe) is dealing with a minor case of turf toe, which is a notoriously annoying injury. If Parker misses any time, RB Rashard Mendenhall would get the start. Although he has not looked good and the PIT OL is marginal.

WR Wes Welker (NE): Welker missed his second game in a row. WR Julian Edelman played in his place but did not have another Welker-esque outing. Edelman could be worth a roster spot, though, if Welker misses any more time.

WR Laurent Robinson (STL): Robinson (ankle) is likely done for the year after breaking his lower leg. Which is too bad. He was having a great start to the season. I expect WR Keenan Burton to get some extra looks with Robinson out.

WR Chris Henry (CIN): Henry (thigh) has been battling a leg injury all year, which could explain why he has yet to explode onto the scene like I expected/predicted. Or maybe he is just not going to explode. Either way, while he is slowed by injury, WR Andre Caldwell seems to be getting some extra looks.

Week 4: Hot & Cold

October 1, 2008 Leave a comment

Here are some lesser known players who I consider to be hot right now.

QB Jason Campbell (WAS): Campbell struggled in week 1, but has been very consistent ever since, scoring around 17 points per game. Plus, Campbell has yet to thrown an INT. People forget about the Skins, because they are in the NFC East, but they are playing very well.

RB Steve Slaton (HOU): Slaton had unimpressive rushing numbers against the Jags, but caught 8 balls for 80 yards and a TD. As long as he remains involved in all phases of the game, he is a must-start.

RB Chris Johnson (TEN): He scored his first 2 TDs of the year and looked good against the Vikings, who have a very good run defense. He should begin to command most of the carries in Tennessee, although LenDale White will get some looks at the goal line.

WR DeSean Jackson (PHI): Okay. I am a believer. He has been very productive so far this year, and it looks like he will continue to be a big part of Philly’s offense. He is a rookie, so he will make a few mistakes, but he is a playmaker, so he is worth starting.

And here are some guys who are very cold. When a player is cold, you have a couple options: (1) Stash them on your bench and stick it out or (2) give up and drop them (assuming there are better options).

Stash ’em:

RB Ryan Grant (GB): The Packers claim his hamstring is healthy, but Grant is really struggling. Remember, though, before he went on a rampage at the end of the year in 2007, the Packers were dead last in the NFL in rushing. He has shown flashes, and I think he will eventually return to form. If you can, wait it out.

WR Andre Johnson (HOU): Outside of his 10 catches in week 1, Andre Johnson has struggled. He dropped a couple potential TD passes in week 3 and was a non-factor in week 4. However, if Slaton can get the ground game going and take some pressure off Schaub, Johnson should find some room to work.

WR Donald Driver (GB): I love Driver, but Greg Jennings has clearly replaced him as the go-to WR in Green Bay. Plus, the Packers have been strugglig on offense recently. I think the Packers will look to get Driver more involved, especially as teams try to force Rodgers to go away from Jennings, but he is not going to put up the same numbers he did when Favre was QB.

Drop ’em:

QB Derek Anderson (CLE): Anderson has played very poorly this year. The Browns have many issues, but Anderson is really struggling. And on top of it all, they have one of the toughest schedules in the NFL. I would not expect him to rebound any time soon. Kerry Collins and Brian Griese, who have only started 3 games, have scored more fantasy points than Anderson.

RB Kevin Smith (DET): Smith lost his starting job to Rudi Johnson, essentially destroying what little value Smith had left. See how many carries he gets this week compared to Rudi, but he is likely not worth a roster spot anymore. But keep an eye on him. Rudi has been injury prone as of late, so Smith could return to the mix. Either way, the Lions have not been very productive on the ground.

Week 4: Buy / Sell

October 1, 2008 Leave a comment

BUY: Often, there are some guys who struggle to start the season, but will eventually come around. You should try to capitalize on the frustrations of their current owners and “buy low” on the following players:

QB Matt Hasselbeck (SEA): Hasselbeck is really struggling this year, mostly due to a complete lack of options in the passing game. However, both Engram and Branch are expected to return very soon (possibly in week 5). Plus, Julius Jones has been running pretty well. He will do much better during the second half of the year.

RB Thomas Jones (NYJ): The Jets started out the year being very conservative on offense, as Favre got used to the new system. As Favre learns more of the plays and becomes more comfortable in the offense, Jones will see more running room. And Favre is a great play-action QB, so they will definitely try to get Jones involved to set up some throws downfield off of the play-action.

WR Dwayne Bowe (KC): Bowe has played pretty well this year, but now that Huard is back, he should continue to put up solid numbers. Huard looks to Bowe often, and Bowe has good hands and good body control. If Larry Johnson continues to run well, and Gonzalez can work the middle of the field, Bowe should have plenty of opportunities to make plays.

SELL: And sometimes, guys perform very well for a period of time, but cannot sustain it over the entire year. You should look to capitalize on their perceived value and “sell high”. I would try to move the following players and trade for someone more consistent:

RB Michael Turner (ATL): It may be too early to judge Turner, but so far he has only performed well at home against two of the worst defenses in the NFL. I am not convinced that he can be consistent, which is what you need out of a RB1. The Packers allow 160 rushing yards a game. I would sell high after this week.

RB Reggie Bush (NO): Tough to sell high after he scores 3.8 points in week 4, but I think Reggie will struggle to be consistent this year, especially now that Deuce is back in the mix. Reggie will be involved in the passing game, but he is not as productive as you need a RB2 to be. Flashy and fun, but not consistently productive.

Week 4: Watch List

September 30, 2008 Leave a comment

Here is a list of players to keep an eye on.

QB Brady Quinn (CLE): Despite getting his first win last week, Derek Anderson still played very poorly. There are rumors swirling that Quinn could be taking over soon. But until we hear otherwise, they are just that: rumors.

QB Jamarcus Russell (OAK): Russell has actually put up decent numbers this year, and his yardage totals are getting better. The Raiders are a run-first team, and we will have to see what happens now with the coaching change, but he might not be a bad backup.

RB Brandon Jackson (GB): Ryan grant is struggling. Jackson has shown some promise, although I think the Packers will stick with Grant for a while longer. Keep an eye on Jackson, though, because if Grant continues to struggle, he will get his chance.

WR Kevin Curtis (PHI): Curtis is not quite ready to return from his sports hernia surgery. Apparently, he practiced last week with the scout team, but it did not go well. It may be another week or two for Curtis.

WR Chris Henry (CIN): The Bengals got a roster exemption for Chris Henry, so they will bring him in and see what he can do. If he is put on the roster, he may be worth an add. But be careful. He is likely out of shape, and with Carson Palmer hurting, he has very little value.

TE Zach Miller (OAK): I liked Miller coming into the season, but the Raiders simply did not throw the ball enough in the first few games to make him a worthwhile start. However, he showed up in week 4 with 5 catches for 95 yards and a TD. I am still not entirely sold on the Raiders passing game, but Miller is one of the better receiving options on the Raiders team.

Week 4: Waiver Wire

September 30, 2008 Leave a comment

Here are some guys you should consider adding to your roster this week if they are available in your league:

QB David Garrard (JAX): People may have dropped Garrard due to his poor start. But he showed last week that he can still be a viable fantasy QB.  He is not consistent enough to be your QB1, but he is worth playing against weaker matchups.

RB Deuce McAllister (NO): Deuce had 20 carries for 78 yards and a TD in his first real action since last season. He was rarely in the game during weeks 1-3, but came on strong in week 4. Grab him and add him if he is available.

RB Michael Bush (OAK): McFadden’s toe injury is still an issue. The coaches in Oakland said they might have not even let him suit up for last game if they did not have issues with depth. Bush has been more productive over the past two games.

RB Mewelde Moore (PIT): Rashard Mendenhall is out for the year. Parker missed week 4, but is expected to be back in week 5. However, if he is not 100%, Moore will get the start. Keep an eye on Parker’s status.

RB Rudi Johnson (DET): Rudi Johnson is officially the starter in Detroit. He will probably not put up numbers like he did during his heyday in Cincy, but he should be a solid guy to add for depth.

WR Lance Moore (NO): I wrote about him last week as a guy to watch, and he blew up with 100+ yards and 2 TDs. If he is still available, grab him now. He should continue to put up some decent numbers, at least until Colston comes back.

WR Arnaz Battle (SF): Battle stepped in for the injured Bryant Johnson and put up 120 yards on 7 catches. Battle could be a good bye-week fill-in as long as he is starting in place of Johnson.

WR Steve Breaston (ARI): I’ve had my eye on him for a few weeks, and he finally broke out last week. Now, with Boldin injured and possibly missing some time, Breaston should become even more involved. And Arizona loves to pass the ball.

TE Owen Daniels (HOU): Daniels had 71 yards in week 3 and another 87 yards in week 4. If Schaub can play like he did last week and not like he did in his first two games, Owens should be a solid TE option going forward.

Week 4: Injury Updates

September 29, 2008 Leave a comment

QB Carson Palmer (CIN): Palmer did not start this weekend due to a sore elbow, which was somewhat of a surprise. And now it appears that his injury might be serious.

QB Aaron Rodgers (GB): Rodgers sprained his shoulder scrambling (which he does way too much). He did throw a TD after hurting his shoulder, but also said that it was very painful. I expect him to play on Sunday.

RB Brian Westbrook (PHI): Westbrook did not play last night against the Bears. He was a game-time decision, though, so he may be ready to go this week against the Redskins. If not, Correll Buckhalter will likely start in his place.

RB Darren McFadden (OAK): Despite what McFadden says, his toe is clearly bothering him. For the second straight game, Michael Bush seemed like the better option at RB. I have never been very high on McFadden, and his lingering toe injury makes me like him even less.

RB Willis McGahee (BAL): McGahee had an eye injury coming into the game, then injured his chest, but returned only to leave again with an unspecified injury. Le’Ron McClain carried the load for the rest of the game, putting up 63 yards and a TD on 16 carries. Even if McGahee is healthy, it is safe to say that McClain will get some touches and likely the goal line carries.

RB Rashard Mendenhall (PIT): Rookie RB Rashard Mendenhall broke a bone in his shoulder on MNF and is out for the season. The Steelers expect Willie Parker to be back next week, but if he is not 100% healthy, add RB Mewelde Moore.

WR Anquan Boldin (ARI): Boldin was knocked unconscious towards the end of the game on Sunday. What initially looked like a much worse injury may end up being a concussion. It is unclear whether he will be ready for next week.