Start & SitSeptember 27, 2007

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Week 4

By Nick Hopkins

This weekend’s games are right around the corner, and now, for the first time this season, bye weeks come into play. If your team is heavily laden with Saints, Redskins, Titans, and Jaguars you will have to look to the bench, or free agency to fill out your line up. (Although I suppose most owners won’t be too broken up about sending Drew Brees or Maurice Jones-Drew to the bench). Thanks once again to our tireless rankers, here is your Week 4 Start and Sit!

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 CIN18.30.99.2
Tony Romo – DALvs STL17.21.68.9
Peyton Manning – INDvs DEN16.22.68.9
Donovan McNabb – PHIat NYG15.82.58.3
Jon Kitna – DETvs CHI15.32.78.0
Brett Favre – GBat MIN14.73.27.9
Carson Palmer – CINvs NE14.73.38.0
Ben Roethlisberger – PITat ARI14.32.77.0
Matt Hasselbeck – SEAat SF14.13.17.2
Philip Rivers – SDvs KC13.03.96.9
Matt Schaub – HOUat ATL12.83.66.4
Eli Manning – NYGvs PHI12.44.16.6
Chad Pennington – NYJat BUF12.34.06.3
Steve McNair – BALat CLE11.74.76.3
Jay Cutler – DENat IND11.44.76.1
Jeff Garcia – TBat CAR11.04.85.7
Alex Smith – SFvs SEA10.94.65.5
Trent Green – MIAvs OAK10.84.75.5
Marc Bulger – STLat DAL10.75.26.0
Derek Anderson – CLEvs BAL9.65.95.5
Daunte Culpepper – OAKat MIA9.25.64.9
Damon Huard – KCat SD8.85.44.2
Joey Harrington – ATLvs HOU8.66.04.6
Matt Leinart – ARIvs PIT8.16.74.8
Brian Griese – CHIat DET8.06.84.8
David Carr – CARvs TB7.76.34.0
Kurt Warner – ARIvs PIT7.56.74.2
Josh McCown – OAKat MIA7.46.33.7
Jake Delhomme – CARvs TB7.36.43.7
Kelly Holcomb – MINvs GB6.96.63.5
Kyle Boller – BALat CLE6.56.73.3
Tarvaris Jackson – MINvs GB6.56.73.2
Trent Edwards – BUFvs NYJ5.67.43.0

Tom Brady, NE (18.3 rating): I know, I’m really going out on a limb with this one right? I just wanted to relay a few statistics, if you haven’t already heard them 100 times on Sportscenter. Brady is completing 79.5 % of his passes. He has thrown ten TDs and only one interception in just three games. His quarterback rating is 141.8! So much for the Pats getting off to a slow start because of their completely revamped receiving corps. Brady owners have to be licking their chops even more than usual this week, with Cincinnati on the schedule.

Marc Bulger, STL (10.7 rating): To say that the Rams have struggled to get their offense going would be an understatement. The trouble that Bulger, Steven Jackson, Torry Holt, and Isaac Bruce have had putting points on the board is a testament to just how important injured left tackle Orlando Pace is to this offense. The Cowboys’ secondary gave up a lot of points to the Giants in Week 1, but have since tightened up (or maybe they have just played weaker competition). In any case, you probably want Bulger to sit this week out, especially considering that he will be missing the key cog in his offense, Steven Jackson.

Running BacksOpponentRatingRiskReward
Joseph Addai – INDvs DEN16.71.98.6
Willie Parker – PITat ARI16.51.98.4
LaDainian Tomlinson – SDvs KC16.32.48.7
Marion Barber III – DALvs STL16.02.18.1
Brian Westbrook – PHIat NYG15.92.78.6
Frank Gore – SFvs SEA15.92.78.5
Willis McGahee – BALat CLE15.52.37.7
LaMont Jordan – OAKat MIA15.22.57.7
Shaun Alexander – SEAat SF15.03.38.3
Travis Henry – DENat IND14.33.17.4
Ronnie Brown – MIAvs OAK13.83.37.1
Thomas Jones – NYJat BUF13.73.47.1
Laurence Maroney – NEat CIN13.63.77.4
Marshawn Lynch – BUFvs NYJ13.53.77.1
Cedric Benson – CHIat DET13.43.46.8
Adrian Peterson – MINvs GB13.24.07.3
Larry Johnson – KCat SD12.64.57.1
Cadillac Williams – TBat CAR12.43.96.3
DeShaun Foster – CARvs TB11.84.26.0
Derrick Ward – NYGvs PHI11.74.56.2
Edgerrin James – ARIvs PIT11.14.65.8
Brian Leonard – STLat DAL11.05.06.0
Sammy Morris – NEat CIN10.94.45.3
Jamal Lewis – CLEvs BAL10.85.15.9
Julius Jones – DALvs STL10.74.55.2
Warrick Dunn – ATLvs HOU10.44.75.1
DeAngelo Williams – CARvs TB9.95.35.3
Jerious Norwood – ATLvs HOU9.85.14.9
Kevin Jones – DETvs CHI9.85.95.7
Rudi Johnson – CINvs NE9.76.15.8
DeShawn Wynn – GBat MIN9.06.04.9
Leon Washington – NYJat BUF8.66.04.5
Brandon Jackson – GBat MIN8.46.54.9
Ron Dayne – HOUat ATL8.36.34.5
Najeh Davenport – PITat ARI8.26.04.2
Tatum Bell – DETvs CHI8.06.54.5
Correll Buckhalter – PHIat NYG7.86.34.2
Reuben Droughns – NYGvs PHI7.36.23.5
Jesse Chatman – MIAvs OAK7.36.33.6
Michael Turner – SDvs KC7.26.84.0
Kenny Watson – CINvs NE7.16.53.6
Samkon Gado – HOUat ATL7.16.33.4
Kevin Faulk – NEat CIN7.06.33.4
Adrian Peterson – CHIat DET7.06.23.3
Musa Smith – BALat CLE6.96.53.4
Selvin Young – DENat IND6.86.53.3
Anthony Thomas – BUFvs NYJ6.76.73.4
Kenton Keith – INDvs DEN6.46.22.7
Vernand Morency – GBat MIN6.37.33.7
Tony Hunt – PHIat NYG6.36.62.9
Michael Robinson – SFvs SEA6.27.03.2
Maurice Morris – SEAat SF6.27.03.2
Michael Pittman – TBat CAR6.26.52.6
Chester Taylor – MINvs GB5.97.13.0
Justin Fargas – OAKat MIA5.97.13.0
Mike Anderson – BALat CLE5.67.12.7
Marcel Shipp – ARIvs PIT5.37.02.3
Michael Bennett – KCat SD5.37.52.8
Jerome Harrison – CLEvs BAL4.67.82.4

Marion Barber III, DAL (16.0 rating): Many experts were calling Barber a reach as a RB2, but so far this season he has looked like a legitimate top tier fantasy runningback. His nose for the endzone is truly remarkable. He has scored at least one touchdown in each game so far this season, making the case that perhaps last season was not a fluke after all. He should have another big day against St. Louis’ 28th ranked rushing defense.

Deangelo Williams, CAR (9.9 rating): If Marion Barber was undervalued on draft day, here’s a guy who was overvalued. Williams has been out-carried by Deshaun Foster in each of the first three games, and has yet to find the endzone. Foster seems to be a better fit for the Panthers’ new zone-blocking scheme. Foster cemented his lead role even more last week with a 122 yard, 2 TD effort. The RB duo will be lining up against Tampa Bay this weak, who seem to be playing much improved defense. The Bucs are 5th in the NFL in scoring defense, at 12.3 points per game.

Wide ReceiversOpponentRatingRiskReward
Randy Moss – NEat CIN18.20.99.1
Terrell Owens – DALvs STL16.91.58.4
Chad Johnson – CINvs NE16.22.18.3
Steve Smith – CARvs TB15.82.18.0
Reggie Wayne – INDvs DEN15.72.58.3
Roy Williams – DETvs CHI15.62.17.7
Marvin Harrison – INDvs DEN15.52.68.1
TJ Houshmandzadeh – CINvs NE15.22.37.5
Kevin Curtis – PHIat NYG15.22.67.8
Donald Driver – GBat MIN15.02.57.5
Torry Holt – STLat DAL14.73.07.7
Laveranues Coles – NYJat BUF14.72.57.2
Anquan Boldin – ARIvs PIT14.53.17.6
Plaxico Burress – NYGvs PHI14.33.47.7
Chris Chambers – MIAvs OAK13.83.06.9
Jerricho Cotchery – NYJat BUF13.63.06.6
Joey Galloway – TBat CAR13.63.16.7
Braylon Edwards – CLEvs BAL13.33.16.5
Wes Welker – NEat CIN13.32.96.1
Larry Fitzgerald – ARIvs PIT13.13.76.9
Ronald Curry – OAKat MIA13.13.56.6
Javon Walker – DENat IND13.03.86.8
Deion Branch – SEAat SF13.03.66.6
Santonio Holmes – PITat ARI12.53.86.2
Derrick Mason – BALat CLE12.33.45.7
Bernard Berrian – CHIat DET12.24.36.5
Brandon Marshall – DENat IND12.04.16.1
Greg Jennings – GBat MIN11.94.26.2
Vincent Jackson – SDvs KC11.94.26.1
Bobby Engram – SEAat SF11.54.15.6
Nate Burleson – SEAat SF11.34.05.3
Shaun McDonald – DETvs CHI11.14.45.5
Darrell Jackson – SFvs SEA11.04.55.5
Isaac Bruce – STLat DAL10.84.45.2
Lee Evans – BUFvs NYJ10.85.66.4
Roddy White – ATLvs HOU10.74.95.6
Mike Furrey – DETvs CHI10.54.65.1
Dwayne Bowe – KCat SD10.05.35.2
Mark Clayton – BALat CLE9.85.35.1
James Jones – GBat MIN9.75.14.9
Marty Booker – MIAvs OAK9.55.34.7
Calvin Johnson – DETvs CHI9.55.55.0
Jerry Porter – OAKat MIA9.45.14.5
Joe Jurevicius – CLEvs BAL9.35.34.6
Reggie Brown – PHIat NYG9.35.54.7
Muhsin Muhammad – CHIat DET9.05.44.4
Arnaz Battle – SFvs SEA8.95.54.4
Amani Toomer – NYGvs PHI8.95.54.4
Nate Washington – PITat ARI8.85.54.3
Kevin Walter – HOUat ATL8.55.94.4
Demetrius Williams – BALat CLE8.55.64.1
Drew Carter – CARvs TB8.45.13.5
Anthony Gonzalez – INDvs DEN8.35.74.0
Michael Jenkins – ATLvs HOU8.15.94.0
Brandon Stokely – DENat IND8.06.04.0
Patrick Crayton – DALvs STL7.96.14.0
Drew Bennett – STLat DAL7.86.13.9
Roscoe Parrish – BUFvs NYJ7.56.53.9
Donte Stallworth – NEat CIN7.36.13.4
Joe Horn – ATLvs HOU7.16.33.4
Buster Davis – SDvs KC7.06.63.7
Jabar Gaffney – NEat CIN6.96.33.3
Sam Aiken – BUFvs NYJ6.86.53.3
Troy Williamson – MINvs GB6.66.93.5
Sammie Parker – KCat SD6.66.63.2
Glenn Holt – CINvs NE6.56.32.8
Bryant Johnson – ARIvs PIT6.36.73.0
Michael Clayton – TBat CAR6.36.73.0
Rashied Davis – CHIat DET6.07.13.0
Bobby Wade – MINvs GB5.97.13.0
Cedrick Wilson – PITat ARI5.66.82.4
Maurice Stovall – TBat CAR5.57.22.7
Derek Hagan – MIAvs OAK4.97.32.3
Sidney Rice – MINvs GB4.87.72.5
Andre Davis – HOUat ATL4.87.82.6

Laveranues Coles, NYJ (14.7 rating): In the two games that Chad Pennington has started, Coles has caught three of Penny’s four touchdown passes. Coles is a dependable second or third fantasy receiver that is a nice, safe play this week. The Bills 30th ranked passing defense has had trouble replacing departed cornerback Nate Clements.

Reggie Brown, PHI (9.3 rating): The Eagles’ offense exploded last week against the Lions, but Reggie Brown did not get in on the act. Kevin Curtis and Jason Avant have been more productive thus far. The Giants’ pass defense has been much maligned at this point, but they played better against Washington, and I expect most NFC East games to be close and low-scoring. Most of you probably won’t be considering starting Brown anyway. Five catches in three games tells most fantasy owners all they need to know, I imagine.

Tight EndsOpponentRatingRiskReward
Antonio Gates – SDvs KC17.31.58.8
Jeremy Shockey – NYGvs PHI15.52.58.0
Jason Witten – DALvs STL15.42.47.8
Todd Heap – BALat CLE15.12.37.4
Ben Watson – NEat CIN14.22.76.9
Tony Gonzalez – KCat SD14.13.47.4
Alge Crumpler – ATLvs HOU13.53.67.1
Dallas Clark – INDvs DEN13.53.36.8
Kellen Winslow – CLEvs BAL13.34.07.4
Owen Daniels – HOUat ATL13.33.46.7
Heath Miller – PITat ARI12.73.76.4
Chris Baker – NYJat BUF10.54.44.9
Bubba Franks – GBat MIN10.05.25.2
Desmond Clark – CHIat DET9.95.15.0
Greg Olsen – CHIat DET9.35.34.7
Randy McMichael – STLat DAL9.05.54.5
Jeff King – CARvs TB9.05.34.3
David Lee – GBat MIN8.55.74.1
Alex Smith – TBat CAR8.45.74.1
Marcus Pollard – SEAat SF8.25.84.0
David Martin – MIAvs OAK8.16.04.1
Visanthe Shiancoe – MINvs GB7.76.13.9
Daniel Graham – DENat IND7.76.13.8
Leonard Pope – ARIvs PIT7.66.54.0
Kyle Brady – NEat CIN7.46.33.7
Ben Utecht – INDvs DEN7.06.13.0
Reggie Kelly – CINvs NE6.96.23.1
Zach Miller – OAKat MIA6.86.53.3
Tony Scheffler – DENat IND6.66.63.2
Matt Schobel – PHIat NYG6.46.63.0
Itula Mili – SEAat SF6.07.02.9
Robert Royal – BUFvs NYJ5.87.23.0
Jeb Putzier – HOUat ATL5.67.53.0
Anthony Becht – TBat CAR5.57.22.7
Anthony Fasano – DALvs STL5.17.32.4

Dallas Clark, IND (13.5 rating): The Colts’ tight end has scored in each of his past two games. Clark has not shown that much consistency over his career, but it makes sense to start him while he’s hot. If he can keep this up he should certainly be looked at as an every week starter.

Leonard Pope, ARI (7.6 rating): Pope showed a little promise in the first two weeks with a handful of catches and a touchdown. But after being held without a catch in Week 3, his match up with Pittsburgh this week doesn’t hold a lot of fantasy potential. Keep an eye on Pope as he could still make some noise if the Cardinals figure out what they are doing at quarterback.

Jeff Reed – PITat ARI16.01.97.9
Stephen Gostkowski – NEat CIN15.72.48.1
Adam Vinatieri – INDvs DEN15.72.58.2
Nick Folk – DALvs STL15.52.47.9
Matt Stover – BALat CLE15.12.57.6
David Akers – PHIat NYG14.62.87.4
Jason Hanson – DETvs CHI14.52.77.3
Josh Brown – SEAat SF13.93.37.1
Shayne Graham – CINvs NE13.63.47.0
Nate Kaeding – SDvs KC13.43.56.9
Robbie Gould – CHIat DET13.03.96.9
Jason Elam – DENat IND12.63.76.4
Sebastian Janikowski – OAKat MIA12.63.96.5
Neil Rackers – ARIvs PIT12.54.06.5
Kris Brown – HOUat ATL12.53.56.0
Mike Nugent – NYJat BUF12.53.86.2
Mason Crosby – GBat MIN12.43.76.1
Jay Feely – MIAvs OAK12.13.75.7
Jeff Wilkins – STLat DAL12.04.06.0
Ryan Longwell – MINvs GB12.03.95.9
Joe Nedney – SFvs SEA12.04.16.1
Matt Bryant – TBat CAR11.94.46.3
Lawrence Tynes – NYGvs PHI11.84.36.1
John Kasay – CARvs TB11.44.66.0
Phil Dawson – CLEvs BAL10.84.75.5
Rian Lindell – BUFvs NYJ10.14.84.9
Morten Andersen – ATLvs HOU10.05.35.3
Dave Rayner – KCat SD9.45.54.9

Matt Stover, BAL (15.1 rating): Stover has been a model of consistency for the Ravens. He has already knocked through eight field goals this year, and he has another good matchup coming up in the Browns.

John Kasay, CAR (11.4 rating): The Panthers’ offense could have problems with Tampa Bay, especially if Jake Delhomme is unable to play. The Buccaneers 5th ranked scoring defense has only allowed three field goals on the season.

Team DefenseOpponentRatingRiskReward
Baltimoreat CLE16.02.18.1
Pittsburghat ARI14.92.57.4
Dallasvs STL14.52.97.4
Houstonat ATL14.42.67.0
Green Bayat MIN14.22.77.0
Chicagoat DET14.13.98.0
San Diegovs KC14.13.37.4
New Englandat CIN14.03.57.5
Indianapolisvs DEN12.44.06.4
Minnesotavs GB12.14.06.1
Oaklandat MIA11.74.25.9
Seattleat SF11.64.05.6
Philadelphiaat NYG11.44.35.7
Miamivs OAK11.04.65.6
Detroitvs CHI10.94.85.6
Carolinavs TB10.84.55.3
New York Jetsat BUF10.74.85.6
Tampa Bayat CAR10.54.75.3
San Franciscovs SEA10.25.05.1
Kansas Cityat SD9.35.65.0
Clevelandvs BAL9.05.84.8
Atlantavs HOU8.95.54.4
Buffalovs NYJ8.36.14.4
Denverat IND8.06.04.0
New York Giantsvs PHI7.16.63.8
Arizonavs PIT7.16.63.7
Cincinnativs NE5.97.23.1
St. Louisat DAL5.57.63.1

Houston (14.4 rating): The Texans have surprised everyone en route to a 2-1 start, and the defense has certainly had their hand in it. Seven sacks, seven turnovers, and two touchdowns have put the Texans’ D on the fantasy map, and they have a great matchup this week against Atlanta. If you need a bye week fill-in, see if Houston is still on your league’s waiver wire.

Denver (8.0 rating): Any time a defense goes into Indianapolis to play the Colts, you probably don’t want to start them on your fantasy team. The Colts are scoring 31 points a game behind Peyton Manning and Joseph Addai. The Broncos haven’t allowed more than 20 points in a game yet, but I would expect that to change.

Special thanks to SwiperNoSwiping, bobbing_headz, madaslives911, m16a, knapplc, Jimboozie, MoDee, treat24, and dream_017 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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