Start & SitNovember 29, 2007

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Week 13

By Nick Hopkins

It’s Week 13 and in many leagues this will be the last week to jockey for position in anticipation of the playoffs. Whether you trying to get a better seed, or just lock up a playoff spot, lineup decisions will be crucial to your success. And just to make things a little trickier, Thursday games are now a weekly occurrence. Green Bay and Dallas face off this Thursday, in a game that is likely to have several big fantasy performances, so be sure to get your line up set on time. With that in mind, let’s move onto the Week 13 rankings!

Our system is based on two separate rankings: Risk and Reward. Each player or defense was given a statistical ranking for each of the two categories.

Risk is determined by anything that could negatively affect the player in question’s performance. This includes such things as matchup, situation, and injuries.

Reward is determined by anything that could positively affect the player in question’s performance. This includes such things as talent, matchup, and situation.

The Ranking for the two categories is as follows:

Risk: Score of 0 being the lowest risk, 10 being the highest risk.
Reward: Score of 0 being lowest reward, 10 being the highest reward.


Tom Brady – NEat BAL16.92.39.2
Ben Roethlisberger – PITvs CIN15.82.48.2
Tony Romo – DALvs GB15.53.18.5
Derek Anderson – CLEat ARI15.42.68.0
Peyton Manning – INDvs JAC15.13.18.1
Brett Favre – GBat DAL15.03.68.6
Kurt Warner – ARIvs CLE14.53.58.0
Jay Cutler – DENat OAK13.93.57.4
Drew Brees – NOvs TB13.74.17.8
Jon Kitna – DETat MIN13.53.57.0
Matt Hasselbeck – SEAat PHI13.44.07.3
Jason Campbell – WASvs BUF13.34.07.3
Carson Palmer – CINat PIT13.34.27.4
Matt Schaub – HOUat TEN13.04.17.1
Philip Rivers – SDat KC12.64.26.7
Vince Young – TENvs HOU12.14.66.7
Kellen Clemens – NYJat MIA11.54.56.0
Eli Manning – NYGat CHI11.25.66.8
AJ Feeley – PHIvs SEA11.14.65.6
Jeff Garcia – TBat NO11.05.56.5
David Garrard – JACat IND10.55.35.8
John Beck – MIAvs NYJ10.35.05.3
Joey Harrington – ATLat STL10.35.15.4
Marc Bulger – STLvs ATL10.16.06.1
Tarvaris Jackson – MINvs DET10.15.05.1
Rex Grossman – CHIvs NYG9.85.35.1
Daunte Culpepper – OAKvs DEN9.65.14.7
Vinny Testaverde – CARvs SF9.05.64.6
Donovan McNabb – PHIvs SEA8.85.74.5
Trent Dilfer – SFat CAR8.55.94.4
Brodie Croyle – KCvs SD8.56.34.7
Alex Smith – SFat CAR7.74.92.5
David Carr – CARvs SF6.66.12.7
Kyle Boller – BALvs NE6.57.03.5
Steve McNair – BALvs NE6.16.02.1
Byron Leftwich – ATLat STL6.06.82.8
JP Losman – BUFat WAS6.07.23.1
Sage Rosenfels – HOUat TEN5.66.52.1
Quinn Gray – JACat IND5.66.72.2
Brian Griese – CHIvs NYG5.46.51.9
JaMarcus Russell – OAKvs DEN5.45.91.3
Damon Huard – KCvs SD5.27.32.4
Chad Pennington – NYJat MIA5.17.12.1
Cleo Lemon – MIAvs NYJ4.67.11.7
Brooks Bollinger – MINvs DET4.47.11.5

Jay Cutler, DEN (13.9 rating): Cutler has looked like a much more confident player in his last four or five games. His improved play has led to a bit of a resurgence for this Denver offense, as they have scored 27, 34, and 34 in their last three games. In those games, Cutler has 5 touchdowns and only one interception. Oakland is ranked highly against the pass, but they are a team that is going to give up points because of a weak run defense, and lackluster offense. Cutler should have several opportunities to put the ball in the end zone this weekend. He may not give you Tom Brady numbers, but he should be considered a solid starter.

Kellen Clemens, NYJ (11.5 rating): The back-up quarterback luster may have worn off of Kellen Clemens. He played well against Washington in Week 9 (his first start since Week 2) and he had a statistically unimpressive, but good-enough performance in Week 11 to beat the Steelers in overtime. But it got ugly in Dallas last week. Clemens was 12-27 passing (his second straight game below 50%) with no touchdowns and a pick. The Jets play the Dolphins this week. Miami is still winless, but they have played their opponents tough recently. They have not given up more than 17 points each of the last four weeks, and they rank 3rd in the NFL in passing defense.

Running BacksOpponentRatingRiskReward
LaDainian Tomlinson – SDat KC16.92.19.0
Brian Westbrook – PHIvs SEA16.42.58.8
Willie Parker – PITvs CIN15.82.28.0
Steven Jackson – STLvs ATL15.03.08.0
Joseph Addai – INDvs JAC14.83.58.3
Clinton Portis – WASvs BUF14.53.17.6
Jamal Lewis – CLEat ARI14.23.17.3
Edgerrin James – ARIvs CLE14.23.27.4
Justin Fargas – OAKvs DEN14.23.27.4
Frank Gore – SFat CAR14.03.77.7
Marion Barber – DALvs GB13.54.17.6
Adrian Peterson – MINvs DET13.54.78.2
Ryan Grant – GBat DAL13.23.97.1
Earnest Graham – TBat NO13.04.27.2
Thomas Jones – NYJat MIA12.93.76.6
Chester Taylor – MINvs DET12.93.96.8
Kolby Smith – KCvs SD12.94.67.5
Reggie Bush – NOvs TB12.84.57.4
Maurice Jones-Drew – JACat IND12.74.26.9
Kevin Jones – DETat MIN12.64.57.1
DeShaun Foster – CARvs SF12.54.46.9
Warrick Dunn – ATLat STL12.54.06.5
Fred Taylor – JACat IND12.54.06.5
LenDale White – TENvs HOU12.14.06.1
Rudi Johnson – CINat PIT12.04.46.4
Maurice Morris – SEAat PHI11.54.56.0
Willis McGahee – BALvs NE11.54.96.5
Andre Hall – DENat OAK11.54.56.0
Reuben Droughns – NYGat CHI11.44.55.9
Laurence Maroney – NEat BAL11.25.36.5
Adrian Peterson – CHIvs NYG11.15.36.4
Julius Jones – DALvs GB10.74.85.5
Selvin Young – DENat OAK10.75.56.2
Ron Dayne – HOUat TEN10.65.15.7
Kenny Watson – CINat PIT10.15.35.4
Jerious Norwood – ATLat STL9.85.45.2
Derrick Ward – NYGat CHI9.56.15.6
Chris Brown – TENvs HOU9.55.14.5
Najeh Davenport – PITvs CIN9.55.44.8
Kevin Faulk – NEat BAL9.55.65.1
Ladell Betts – WASvs BUF9.44.84.2
Patrick Cobbs – MIAvs NYJ9.26.15.3
Jesse Chatman – MIAvs NYJ9.05.74.7
Kenton Keith – INDvs JAC9.05.84.8
Anthony Thomas – BUFat WAS8.95.34.2
DeAngelo Williams – CARvs SF8.75.54.2
Leon Washington – NYJat MIA8.66.04.6
Ahman Green – HOUat TEN8.56.55.0
LaMont Jordan – OAKvs DEN8.36.54.7
TJ Duckett – DETat MIN8.06.04.0
Aaron Stecker – NOvs TB7.85.73.5
Samkon Gado – MIAvs NYJ7.55.93.4
Correll Buckhalter – PHIvs SEA7.56.13.5
Leonard Weaver – SEAat PHI7.46.53.8
Marcel Shipp – ARIvs CLE7.26.53.7
Michael Turner – SDat KC7.16.53.5
Maurice Hicks – SFat CAR7.16.73.8
Antonio Pittman – STLvs ATL7.06.53.5
Marshawn Lynch – BUFat WAS6.97.14.0
Jason Wright – CLEat ARI6.86.53.3
Travis Henry – DENat OAK6.67.33.9
Aveion Cason – DETat MIN6.56.73.2
Dwayne Wright – BUFat WAS6.46.73.1
Brandon Jacobs – NYGat CHI6.46.73.1
Shaun Alexander – SEAat PHI6.26.52.7
Brian Leonard – STLvs ATL6.17.03.1
Greg Jones – JACat IND6.17.13.2
Joe Echemandu – HOUat TEN6.06.42.4
Mike Bell – DENat OAK6.07.23.2
Heath Evans – NEat BAL5.97.53.4
Michael Robinson – SFat CAR5.97.13.0
Michael Bennett – TBat NO5.77.43.1
Jason Snelling – ATLat STL5.76.92.6
Vernand Morency – GBat DAL5.67.22.8
Jerome Harrison – CLEat ARI5.57.12.5
Darius Walker – HOUat TEN5.46.62.0
Ahmed Bradshaw – NTGat CHI5.47.32.6
Brandon Jackson – GBat DAL5.37.32.5
Michael Pittman – TBat NO5.37.32.5
Musa Smith – BALvs NE5.37.73.0
Chris Henry – TENvs HOU5.26.51.7
Gilbert Harris – KCvs SD5.17.12.2
Dominic Rhodes – OAKvs DEN4.87.42.2
Mewelde Moore – MINvs DET4.87.62.5
Mike Anderson – BALvs NE4.67.62.3
Tatum Bell – DETat MIN4.57.11.5
Tony Hunt – PHIvs SEA4.57.52.0

Justin Fargas, OAK (14.2 rating): Fargas got 20+ carries for the 4th straight week against Kansas City last week. He racked up 157 total yards and a touchdown against the Chiefs. He should be a strong start again this week against the Broncos, who really struggle against the run. Their 4.7 yards per carry average is the 2nd highest allowed by any NFL defense.

Rudi Johnson, CIN (12.0 rating): Rudi has been far from his consistent self this season, due mostly to injuries, combined with the struggles of the Bengals in general and their tendency to get into shoot outs. He is a weak start this week against a Pittsburgh defense that is one of the best in the NFL against the run. The Steelers are allowing just 3.7 yards per carry, and have only given up two rushing touchdowns all year.

Wide ReceiversOpponentRatingRiskReward
Terrell Owens – DALvs GB17.72.09.7
Randy Moss – NEat BAL17.42.29.6
Braylon Edwards – CLEat ARI17.02.29.2
Larry Fitzgerald – ARIvs CLE16.52.38.8
Reggie Wayne – INDvs JAC16.22.28.4
Hines Ward – PITvs CIN15.22.88.0
Torry Holt – STLvs ATL15.12.77.8
Wes Welker – NEat BAL14.93.18.0
TJ Houshmandzadeh – CINat PIT14.93.28.1
Chad Johnson – CINat PIT14.83.58.3
Roy Williams – DETat MIN14.83.88.6
Joey Galloway – TBat NO14.43.98.3
Greg Jennings – GBat DAL14.33.07.3
Deion Branch – SEAat PHI14.23.17.3
Anquan Boldin – ARIvs CLE14.03.27.2
Andre Johnson – HOUat TEN13.83.77.5
Plaxico Burress – NYGat CHI13.84.68.4
Jerricho Cotchery – NYJat MIA13.73.67.3
Marques Colston – NOvs TB13.53.67.1
Steve Smith – CARvs SF13.44.68.0
Brandon Marshall – DENat OAK13.43.77.1
Donald Driver – GBat DAL13.43.77.1
Bobby Engram – SEAat PHI13.03.76.7
Dwayne Bowe – KCvs SD12.94.27.1
Bernard Berrian – CHIvs NYG12.74.37.0
Laveranues Coles – NYJat MIA12.74.77.4
Calvin Johnson – DETat MIN12.74.97.6
Roddy White – ATLat STL12.63.66.2
Santana Moss – WASvs BUF12.44.67.0
Chris Henry – CINat PIT12.34.46.7
Donte Stallworth – NEat BAL12.14.97.0
Kevin Curtis – PHIvs SEA12.14.97.0
Derrick Mason – BALvs NE11.93.95.8
Amani Toomer – NYGat CHI11.74.36.0
Lee Evans – BUFat WAS11.66.07.6
Joe Jurevicius – CLEat ARI11.53.44.9
Santonio Holmes – PITvs CIN11.55.46.9
Isaac Bruce – STLvs ATL11.24.75.9
Sidney Rice – MINvs DET11.05.16.1
Reggie Williams – JACat IND10.95.66.5
Anthony Gonzalez – INDvs JAC10.95.26.1
Reggie Brown – PHIvs SEA10.45.76.1
Drew Carter – CARvs SF10.14.95.0
Shaun McDonald – DETat MIN10.15.25.3
Kevin Walter – HOUat TEN10.05.15.1
Justin Gage – TENvs HOU9.95.85.7
Marty Booker – MIAvs NYJ9.85.14.9
James Jones – GBat DAL9.86.15.9
Keenan McCardell – WASvs BUF9.75.35.0
Ike Hilliard – TBat NO9.65.75.3
Chris Chambers – SDat KC9.55.85.3
Dennis Northcutt – JACat IND9.45.34.7
Arnaz Battle – SFat CAR9.45.75.1
Nate Washington – PITvs CIN9.25.34.5
Brandon Stokley – DENat OAK9.15.44.5
Mark Clayton – BALvs NE9.05.74.7
Javon Walker – DENat OAK8.86.55.3
Jabar Gaffney – NEat BAL8.76.14.8
Drew Bennett – STLvs ATL8.65.44.0
Devin Hester – CHIvs NYG8.67.66.2
David Patten – NOvs TB8.65.84.4
Ted Ginn – MIAvs NYJ8.66.24.8
Mike Furrey – DETat MIN8.55.33.8
Vincent Jackson – SDat KC8.26.34.5
Ronald Curry – OAKvs DEN7.96.44.3
Muhsin Muhammad – CHIvs NYG7.96.54.4
Nate Burleson – SEAat PHI7.86.13.9
Roydell Williams – TENvs HOU7.76.54.2
Marvin Harrison – INDvs JAC7.57.34.7
Devery Henderson – NOvs TB7.46.64.0
Jerry Porter – OAKvs DEN7.37.24.5
Patrick Crayton – DALvs GB7.26.63.8
Andre Davis – HOUat TEN7.27.04.2
Ruvell Martin – GBat DAL7.17.14.2
Michael Jenkins – ATLat STL7.16.73.8
Bobby Wade – MINvs DET7.06.23.2
Darrell Jackson – SFat CAR6.96.53.4
Bryant Johnson – ARIvs CLE6.96.63.5
Roscoe Parrish – BUFat WAS6.86.83.6
Laurent Robinson – ATLat STL6.76.63.3
Troy Williamson – MINvs DET6.76.53.2
Josh Reed – BUFat WAS6.67.23.8
Justin McCareins – NYJat MIA6.36.62.9
Antwaan Randle El – WASvs BUF6.36.93.2
Lance Moore – NOvs TB6.37.13.4
Cedrick Wilson – PITvs CIN6.26.62.8
Aaron Moorehead – INDvs JAC6.06.62.6
Hank Baskett – PHIvs SEA6.06.92.9
Demetrius Williams – BALvs NE6.07.13.1
Ben Obomanu – SEAat PHI5.96.52.4
Sam Hurd – DALvs GB5.97.33.2
Brandon Jones – TENvs HOU5.57.42.8
Derek Hagan – MIAvs NYJ5.47.42.8
Sammie Parker – KCvs SD5.47.52.9
Robert Ferguson – MINvs DET5.47.83.2
Ernest Wilford – JACat IND5.37.72.9
Steve Smith – NYGat CHI5.27.42.6
Dwayne Jarrett – CARvs SF5.27.52.7
Koren Robinson – GBat DAL5.17.93.0
Jacoby Jones – HOUat TEN5.07.62.5
Michael Clayton – TBat NO4.98.02.9
Glenn Martinez – DENat OAK4.87.62.4
Jason Avant – PHIvs SEA4.87.62.4
Ashley Lelie – SFat CAR4.87.72.4
Antonio Chatman – CINat PIT4.78.02.7
Tim Carter – CLEat ARI4.77.72.3
Jerheme Urban – ARIvs CLE4.57.31.8
Rashied Davis – CHIvs NYG4.57.82.2
Matt Jones – JACat IND4.58.02.4
Craig Davis – SDat KC4.47.92.3
Eddie Kennison – KCvs SD4.48.02.4
James Thrash – WASvs BUF4.37.51.8
Terrance Copper – NOvs TB4.37.82.0
Eric Moulds – TENvs HOU4.38.02.2
Tim Dwight – OAKvs DEN4.28.02.2
Dante Hall – STLvs ATL4.08.01.9
Joe Horn – ATLat STL3.97.71.5
Malcolm Floyd – SDat KC3.87.91.6
DJ Hackett – SEAat PHI3.87.31.1
Sam Aiken – BUFat WAS3.87.61.3
Terry Glenn – DALvs GB3.17.60.7
Craphonso Thorpe – INDvs JAC2.88.61.3

Braylon Edwards, CLE (17.0 rating): Braylon Edwards has proven to be a must-start for his fantasy owners this year, and this week is certainly no different. Arizona recently learned that their Pro Bowl safety Adrian Wilson will miss the rest of the year with injuries to his heel and Achilles tendon. The Cardinals gave up 27 and 37 points the past two weeks with Wilson missing from the secondary. His absence should allow Edwards the chance to get behind the defense for some big plays.

Reggie Brown, PHI (10.4 rating): The Eagles surprised everyone by playing New England so tough in what ended up being just a 3 point loss. Quarterback A.J. Feeley played well, connecting with Brown 5 times, including once for a touchdown. I have my doubts that this type of production can continue however, and the Seahawks will provide a tough challenge this week. Seattle has still only given up 6 touchdowns through the air all year.

Tight EndsOpponentRatingRiskReward
Antonio Gates – SDat KC16.72.39.0
Jason Witten – DALvs GB16.31.98.2
Kellen Winslow – CLEat ARI15.92.48.3
Tony Gonzalez – KCvs SD14.73.07.7
Chris Cooley – WASvs BUF14.63.27.8
Dallas Clark – INDvs JAC14.32.97.2
Tony Scheffler – DENat OAK13.53.57.0
Jeremy Shockey – NYGat CHI13.23.97.0
Donald Lee – GBat DAL12.94.06.8
Heath Miller – PITvs CIN12.64.26.8
Vernon Davis – SFat CAR12.34.26.5
Ben Watson – NEat BAL12.34.46.6
Owen Daniels – HOUat TEN11.94.26.0
Alex Smith – TBat NO11.34.45.7
Greg Olsen – CHIvs NYG11.15.06.1
Randy McMichael – STLvs ATL10.74.75.4
Chris Baker – NYJat MIA10.44.85.2
LJ Smith – PHIvs SEA10.45.25.6
Leonard Pope – ARIvs CLE10.35.35.6
Alge Crumpler – ATLat STL10.15.65.7
Desmond Clark – CHIvs NYG9.65.65.2
Visanthe Shiancoe – MINvs DET9.55.55.0
Marcedes Lewis – JACat IND9.25.74.9
Ben Utecht – INDvs JAC9.26.05.1
Eric Johnson – NOvs TB9.15.74.8
Zach Miller – OAKvs DEN9.05.54.5
Jeff King – CARvs SF8.65.33.9
Bo Scaife – TENvs HOU8.56.14.6
David Martin – MIAvs NYJ8.35.33.5
Will Heller – SEAat PHI8.05.53.5
Daniel Graham – DENat OAK7.75.83.4
Justin Peelle – MIAvs NYJ7.45.93.2
Quinn Sypniewski – BALvs NE7.26.63.7
Marcus Pollard – SEAat PHI7.06.33.3
Matt Spaeth – PITvs CIN7.06.53.5
Ben Troupe – TENvs HOU7.06.53.4
Kyle Brady – NEat BAL6.76.43.1
Bryan Fletcher – INDvs JAC6.66.32.9
Todd Heap – BALvs NE6.56.83.2
George Wrighster – JACat IND6.45.61.9
Robert Royal – BUFat WAS6.36.93.2
Matt Schobel – PHIvs SEA6.07.03.0
Billy Miller – NOvs TB6.07.03.0
Anthony Becht – TBat NO6.06.42.4
Christian Fauria – CARvs SF5.76.62.3
Reggie Kelly – CINat PIT5.37.32.5
Jason Dunn – KCvs SD5.26.61.8
Anthony Fasano – DALvs GB5.26.82.0
Bubba Franks – GBat DAL5.17.52.5
Casey Fitzsimmons – DETat MIN5.07.12.1
Sean McHugh – DETat MIN4.67.21.8
Jeb Putzier – HOUat TEN4.57.62.1

Tony Scheffler, DEN (13.5 rating): The Broncos’ tight end had a nice game last week, hauling in 5 catches for 82 yards, including a spectacular grab for a touchdown. Cutler seems to comfortable with him and looks to him often. I mentioned earlier that I like Cutler this week and I like Scheffler for the same reasons. The Raiders will give up points, and Scheffler is going to be a popular target for Cutler when the Broncos get in the red zone.

Ben Watson, NE (12.3 rating): Watson is always going to be inconsistent, because the Patriots have so many weapons to chose from. I would guess that this week would not be particularly busy for Watson as the Ravens should have the linebackers and safeties to adequately cover him. Baltimore is weakest at cornerback, so the Patriots will probably continue to look to the wide receivers before throwing Watson’s direction.

Phil Dawson – CLEat ARI15.12.37.4
Ryan Longwell – MINvs DET14.92.37.2
Nick Folk – DALvs GB14.92.77.5
Nate Kaeding – SDat KC14.62.97.5
Neil Rackers – ARIvs CLE14.52.77.2
Rob Bironas – TENvs HOU14.52.87.3
David Akers – PHIvs SEA14.32.66.9
Jason Hanson – DETat MIN14.32.97.2
Adam Vinatieri – INDvs JAC14.33.27.5
Stephen Gostkowski – NEat BAL14.33.17.4
Jason Elam – DENat OAK14.22.46.5
Mason Crosby – GBat DAL14.13.07.1
Robbie Gould – CHIvs NYG14.02.76.7
Shaun Suisham – WASvs BUF14.02.96.9
Josh Brown – SEAat PHI13.83.06.8
Jeff Reed – PITvs CIN13.72.86.5
Kris Brown – HOUat TEN13.73.16.8
Shayne Graham – CINat PIT13.43.56.9
Sebastian Janikowski – OAKvs DEN13.43.36.7
Jeff Wilkins – STLvs ATL13.23.56.6
Josh Scobee – JACat IND13.03.66.5
Mike Nugent – NYJat MIA12.83.56.2
Olindo Mare – NOvs TB12.43.76.0
Lawrence Tynes – NYGat CHI12.14.36.4
Joe Nedney – SFat CAR12.13.75.7
Matt Bryant – TBat NO12.03.75.7
John Kasay – CARvs SF12.03.45.3
Rian Lindell – BUFat WAS11.73.85.5
Matt Stover – BALvs NE11.74.05.7
Jay Feely – MIAvs NYJ11.74.25.8
Morten Andersen – ATLat STL11.64.15.7
John Carney – KCvs SD8.64.73.3

Stephen Gostkowski, NE (14.3 rating): Gostkowski has not gotten a lot of work this year (not with field goals anyway… he’s a PAT machine!) but the Ravens have given up the most field goals in the NFL this year (30). And even if he’s not kicking field goals, you at least know the Patriots’ kicker is going to put points on the board consistently.

Matt Stover, BAL (11.7 rating): Stover is one of the league’s most reliable kickers, but he can’t score if he doesnt get the opportunities. In the Ravens’ past five games, Stover has been held without a single field goal attempt four times! When the offense struggles that much the kicker is just not a viable fantasy option.

Team DefenseOpponentRatingRiskReward
New Englandat BAL15.82.07.8
San Diegoat KC14.03.27.2
Indianapolisvs JAC13.04.37.3
Denverat OAK12.63.56.1
Chicagovs NYG12.64.77.3
New York Giantsat CHI12.63.56.1
Washingtonvs BUF12.63.66.2
Minnesotavs DET12.54.46.9
Tennesseevs HOU12.24.66.7
Tampa Bayat NO11.94.96.8
Carolinavs SF11.83.95.7
Philadelphiavs SEA11.64.86.4
St. Louisvs ATL11.63.55.1
New Orleansvs TB11.54.35.7
Pittsburghvs CIN11.15.76.7
Detroitat MIN11.04.95.9
Houstonat TEN10.74.75.4
Dallasvs GB10.75.56.2
Jacksonvilleat IND10.75.56.1
New York Jetsat MIA10.44.14.5
Seattleat PHI10.35.05.3
San Franciscoat CAR10.04.54.5
Arizonavs CLE9.85.85.6
Green Bayat DAL9.86.36.0
Miamivs NYJ9.74.84.5
Clevelandat ARI9.65.65.1
Oaklandvs DEN9.55.24.6
Buffaloat WAS9.25.44.6
Kansas Cityvs SD9.05.84.7
Atlantaat STL8.45.94.3
Baltimorevs NE7.37.14.4
Cincinnatiat PIT7.36.53.8

Chicago (12.6 rating): There are two reasons you can feel good about starting the Bears’ defense this week. The first is Eli Manning, who looked totally lost last week, as he threw 4 interceptions in a blowout loss to Minnesota. It does not help that he is throwing to a very banged up receiving corps. The second is Devin Hester, who scored the 9th and 10th return touchdowns of his young career last week for Chicago. Assuming special teams touchdowns count for defenses in your league, that is hard to ignore. Even with Chicago’s defense not having their best year, they should be worth a start this week.

Pittsburgh (10.1 rating): I’m not going to say Pittsburgh is a terrible play this weak, but I would feel a little uneasy starting them against the Bengals. Ocho Cinco had a huge game last week, breaking out of a long scoreless streak with a three-touchdown performance. If he can keep that going this week (and you know that a nationally televised Sunday night game is extra motivation) the Bengals could put up a lot of points on their division rivals. If you can find a better matchup elsewhere it may be a good idea to sit the Steelers’ D.

Special thanks to SwiperNoSwiping, dream_017, madaslives911, totalair32, eaglesfan, suhgamer, treat24, plantation, spodog, and Tyeattolah for their rankings and involvement with this week's article. For more insights and additional fine-tuning, visit our Who to Start/Bench forum section or listen to The Coach's Voice on Fantasy Cafe Radio.
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