Start & SitOctober 18, 2007

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Week 7

By Nick Hopkins

In Week 6, the Patriots continued their dominance, “All Day” Peterson ran all over the Bears, and Santana Moss forgot how to catch (still a sore subject for me…). Anyway, among this week’s matchups are the undefeated Patriots taking on the winless Dolphins, as Miami continues its quest to avoid fielding the league’s first ever 0-16 team to go with their 1972 undefeated team. Week 7’s bye weeks should be a bit less damaging than last week’s, with only four teams (Green Bay, Cleveland, San Diego, and Carolina) taking the week off. Thanks again to our helpful rankers, here is the Cafe’s Week 7 Start & Sit for all your lineup decision needs!

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 MIA17.81.59.3
Peyton Manning – INDat JAC16.82.29.0
Tony Romo – DALvs MIN16.62.38.9
Carson Palmer – CINvs NYJ16.42.28.6
Matt Hasselbeck – SEAvs STL14.93.18.0
Eli Manning – NYGvs SF14.63.48.0
Drew Brees – NOvs ATL14.23.67.8
Jon Kitna – DETvs TB13.84.07.8
Jeff Garcia – TBat DET13.53.87.3
Donovan McNabb – PHIvs CHI13.33.87.2
Ben Roethlisberger – PITat DEN13.34.07.3
Jason Campbell – WASvs ARI13.23.87.0
Matt Schaub – HOUvs TEN12.34.46.7
David Garrard – JACvs IND11.74.76.3
Vince Young – TENat HOU11.25.86.9
Chad Pennington – NYJat CIN11.15.46.5
Jay Cutler – DENvs PIT10.65.35.9
Damon Huard – KCat OAK10.45.55.9
Brian Griese – CHIat PHI10.06.66.6
Kyle Boller – BALat BUF9.95.75.6
Daunte Culpepper – OAKvs KC9.85.95.8
Byron Leftwich – ATLat NO9.86.26.0
Cleo Lemon – MIAvs NE9.56.56.0
Gus Frerotte – STLat SEA8.86.04.8
Trent Edwards – BUFvs BAL8.76.45.2
Trent Dilfer – SFat NYG8.36.14.4
Tim Rattay – ARIat WAS8.26.64.8
Tarvaris Jackson – MINat DAL8.06.64.6
Steve McNair – BALat BUF7.76.54.2
Marc Bulger – STLat SEA7.17.34.3
Brodie Croyle – KCat OAK6.37.13.4
Kurt Warner – ARIat WAS5.27.22.4
Josh McCown – OAKvs KC4.87.22.0
Kelly Holcomb – MINat DAL4.37.41.8
Joey Harrington – ATLat NO3.27.70.9

Jason Campbell, WAS (13.2 rating): Washington’s young QB has been impressive with his poise and decision making in his first season as the starter. He does not always put up big numbers in the Redskins’ run-oriented offense, and he has not had much help from his receivers outside of Chris Cooley and Antwaan Randle-El, but Campbell has scored a touchdown in four straight games, including two each of the last two weeks. Once again, Campbell is unlikely to put up eye-popping numbers against Arizona, but he is in a good position to have a solid game and could fill in nicely as a fantasy starter this week. Cardinals’ standout safety Adrian Wilson and linebacker Karlos Dansby have been limited in practice and could miss the game, making Campbell a sneaky start in week 7.

Cleo Lemon, MIA (9.5 rating): I’m going to assume this one is a bit of a no-brainer, even though Cleo did put up some decent numbers in his second game with the Dolphins. Even Cleo Lemon’s mother can’t feel good about her son’s chances after the winless Fins traded away their best wide receiver going into a game against the NFL’s best team. Resist the temptation to start Lemon, even if he does have one of the NFL’s most… interesting names.

Running BacksOpponentRatingRiskReward
Larry Johnson – KCat OAK16.22.68.7
Brian Westbrook – PHIvs CHI16.12.38.3
Reggie Bush – NOvs ATL15.62.48.0
Willis McGahee – BALat BUF15.62.48.0
Willie Parker – PITat DEN15.32.47.8
Frank Gore – SFat NYG15.22.88.0
Adrian Peterson – MINat DAL15.22.88.0
Ronnie Brown – MIAvs NE14.43.57.9
Joseph Addai – INDat JAC14.33.37.6
LaMont Jordan – OAKvs KC13.93.27.2
Edgerrin James – ARIat WAS13.93.37.2
Maurice Jones-Drew – JACvs IND13.83.67.4
Shaun Alexander – SEAvs STL13.63.77.3
Clinton Portis – WASvs ARI13.23.97.1
Thomas Jones – NYJat CIN12.93.86.8
Travis Henry – DENvs PIT12.04.26.2
Kevin Jones – DETvs TB11.94.66.4
Marion Barber – DALvs MIN11.84.46.2
LenDale White – TENat HOU11.34.76.1
Cedric Benson – CHIat PHI10.94.75.7
Earnest Graham – TBat DET10.94.95.8
Brandon Jacobs – NYGvs SF10.85.15.9
Rudi Johnson – CINvs NYJ10.75.36.0
Marshawn Lynch – BUFvs BAL10.55.25.7
Jerious Norwood – ATLat NO10.35.55.8
Brian Leonard – STLat SEA9.75.75.4
Kevin Faulk – NEat MIA9.65.45.0
Warrick Dunn – ATLat NO9.35.44.7
Chester Taylor – MINat DAL9.15.74.7
Fred Taylor – JACvs IND9.05.94.9
Ahman Green – HOUvs TEN8.96.15.1
Laurence Maroney – NEat MIA8.46.34.8
Ladell Betts – WASvs ARI8.36.14.4
Derrick Ward – NYGvs SF8.26.34.5
Michael Bennett – TBat DET7.84.42.2
Najeh Davenport – PITat DEN7.66.33.9
Julius Jones – DALvs MIN7.46.53.9
Kenny Watson – CINvs NYJ7.36.73.9
Chris Brown – TENat HOU7.26.33.6
Mike Anderson – BALat BUF6.94.61.5
Reuben Droughns – NYGvs SF6.86.83.6
Samkon Gado – HOUvs TEN6.75.11.7
Kenton Keith – INDat JAC6.77.13.7
TJ Duckett – DETvs TB6.45.11.5
Selvin Young – DENvs PIT6.46.93.3
Leon Washington – NYJat CIN6.26.93.1
Justin Fargas – OAKvs KC6.17.23.3
Correll Buckhalter – PHIvs CHI6.17.43.5
Tatum Bell – DETvs TB6.07.33.3
Aaron Stecker – NOvs ATL6.07.33.3
Maurice Morris – SEAvs STL5.87.53.3
Ron Dayne – HOUvs TEN5.77.43.2
Steven Jackson – STLat SEA5.45.40.9
Adrian Peterson – CHIat PHI5.27.52.7
Tony Hunt – PHIvs CHI4.96.81.7
Marcel Shipp – ARIat WAS4.77.72.3
Musa Smith – BALat BUF4.67.72.3
Chris Henry – TENat HOU4.58.12.6
Sammy Morris – NEat MIA4.35.90.2
Greg Jones – JACvs IND3.88.11.9
Michael Robinson – SFat NYG3.88.11.9
Anthony Thomas – BUFvs BAL3.38.31.7
Jesse Chatman – MIAvs NE3.38.31.7

Ronnie Brown, MIA (14.4 rating): I know I just said to sit Miami’s quarterback, and certainly the Patriots are a tough matchup for any offensive player, but Ronnie Brown is on fire right now. It seems like the Dolphins are getting him the ball any way they can, and they should be counting on him even more with Chris Chambers leaving for San Diego. Brown has run for over 100 yards and caught at least five passes in each of his last four games. Even against the Patriots, it would not surprise me to see another good game from the former Auburn star.

Julius Jones, DAL (7.4 rating): Splitting with Marion Barber has made it tough for Julius Jones to be a big fantasy factor this year, despite the Cowboys’ explosive offense. Barber also gets most of the work near the goal line, and it shows as Jones has only scored one touchdown on the year. Julius does not have a good matchup this week in Minnesota. Expect the Cowboys to air it out and try to take advantage of the Vikings’ pass D, much like the Bears did last week when Brian Griese passed for 381 yards.

Wide ReceiversOpponentRatingRiskReward
Randy Moss – NEat MIA17.41.38.7
TJ Houshmandzadeh – CINvs NYJ17.11.78.7
Terrell Owens – DALvs MIN16.52.18.6
Plaxico Burress – NYGvs SF16.32.18.3
Chad Johnson – CINvs NYJ15.82.17.9
Reggie Wayne – INDat JAC15.32.27.6
Derrick Mason – BALat BUF13.53.46.9
Laveranues Coles – NYJat CIN13.53.46.9
Joey Galloway – TBat DET13.43.56.9
Patrick Crayton – DALvs MIN13.43.67.0
Roy Williams – DETvs TB13.43.87.2
Kevin Curtis – PHIvs CHI13.23.97.1
Jerricho Cotchery – NYJat CIN12.93.66.6
Dwayne Bowe – KCat OAK12.94.16.9
Wes Welker – NEat MIA12.63.86.4
Marvin Harrison – INDat JAC12.64.67.2
Larry Fitzgerald – ARIat WAS12.64.26.8
Bobby Engram – SEAvs STL12.34.06.3
Torry Holt – STLat SEA12.24.87.0
Donte Stallworth – NEat MIA12.24.06.2
Santonio Holmes – PITat DEN12.14.76.8
Bernard Berrian – CHIat PHI11.64.86.4
Marques Colston – NOvs ATL10.85.26.0
Anquan Boldin – ARIat WAS10.75.66.3
Javon Walker – DENvs PIT10.75.36.0
Roddy White – ATLat NO10.75.25.8
Brandon Marshall – DENvs PIT10.44.85.2
Ronald Curry – OAKvs KC10.45.45.8
Amani Toomer – NYGvs SF10.15.25.2
Antwaan Randle El – WASvs ARI9.95.85.7
Hines Ward – PITat DEN9.86.46.2
Brandon Jones – TENat HOU9.84.44.2
Lee Evans – BUFvs BAL9.85.65.4
Calvin Johnson – DETvs TB9.75.65.3
Nate Burleson – SEAvs STL9.65.45.0
Kevin Walter – HOUvs TEN9.35.95.2
Shaun McDonald – DETvs TB9.15.44.5
Drew Bennett – STLat SEA9.14.94.0
Jerry Porter – OAKvs KC9.05.74.7
Dennis Northcutt – JACvs IND8.75.94.7
Darrell Jackson – SFat NYG8.75.94.7
Andre Davis – HOUvs TEN8.75.84.6
Mike Furrey – DETvs TB8.65.54.1
Marty Booker – MIAvs NE8.55.94.4
Reggie Brown – PHIvs CHI8.56.65.1
David Patten – NOvs ATL8.36.14.4
Santana Moss – WASvs ARI8.26.64.8
Ike Hilliard – TBat DET7.96.03.9
Muhsin Muhammad – CHIat PHI7.96.34.3
Michael Jenkins – ATLat NO7.96.54.4
Lance Moore – NOvs ATL7.96.74.7
Devin Hester – CHIat PHI7.87.14.9
Roydell Williams – TENat HOU7.76.44.2
Anthony Gonzalez – INDat JAC7.46.53.9
Isaac Bruce – STLat SEA7.16.83.9
Andre Johnson – HOUvs TEN7.16.94.0
Brandon Stokely – DENvs PIT6.96.53.4
Troy Williamson – MINat DAL6.96.93.9
Joe Horn – ATLat NO6.96.93.8
Eric Moulds – TENat HOU6.86.83.6
Demetrius Williams – BALat BUF6.86.63.4
Reggie Williams – JACvs IND6.76.73.4
Derek Hagan – MIAvs NE6.75.92.6
Arnaz Battle – SFat NYG6.66.83.4
Michael Clayton – TBat DET6.36.93.2
Roscoe Parrish – BUFvs BAL6.26.72.9
Sidney Rice – MINat DAL6.17.43.6
Ben Obomanu – SEAvs STL6.17.23.3
Mark Clayton – BALat BUF6.17.13.1
Bobby Wade – MINat DAL5.97.23.2
Antonio Chatman – CINvs NYJ5.86.42.2
Sammie Parker – KCat OAK5.86.42.2
DJ Hackett – SEAvs STL5.77.33.0
Jabar Gaffney – NEat MIA5.67.32.9
Matt Jones – JACvs IND5.67.43.0
Steve Smith – NYGvs SF5.66.62.2
Nate Washington – PITat DEN5.67.02.6
Devery Henderson – NOvs ATL5.47.32.7
Jerheme Urban – ARIat WAS5.36.61.9
Sam Aiken – BUFvs BAL5.36.61.9
Bryant Johnson – ARIat WAS5.27.52.7
Terrance Copper – NOvs ATL4.96.61.5
Brandon Lloyd – WASvs ARI4.87.72.5
Jacoby Jones – HOUvs TEN4.87.01.8
Sam Hurd – DALvs MIN4.77.72.4
Ernest Wilford – JACvs IND4.77.72.3
Deion Branch – SEAvs STL4.37.01.3
Rashied Davis – CHIat PHI3.88.11.9
Cedrick Wilson – PITat DEN3.88.11.9

Derrick Mason, BAL (13.5 rating): Derrick Mason continues to have a quiet, but very good season for the Ravens. Mark Clayton has been a disappointment, but Mason has stepped up in his place. The veteran wide out is on pace for 1200 yards and an impressive 130 catches. The Bills’ pass defense is 31st in the league, so Mason should get some opportunities down the field, no matter who the Ravens have at quarterback.

Calvin Johnson, DET (9.7 rating): Calvin Johnson started the season off strong, catching a touchdown in each of his first two games. Then he got hurt, and didn’t quite look like his old self in his return against Washington. He has had a bye week to rest up, but he will probably need at least one more week to get back into the swing of things, especially considering that the Lions do have other solid options at wide receiver. Not to mention the Buccaneers are 8th in league in passing defense.

Tight EndsOpponentRatingRiskReward
Jason Witten – DALvs MIN16.91.78.6
Tony Gonzalez – KCat OAK15.72.48.2
Jeremy Shockey – NYGvs SF14.62.87.4
Chris Cooley – WASvs ARI13.63.47.0
Dallas Clark – INDat JAC13.13.76.7
Todd Heap – BALat BUF11.85.16.8
Heath Miller – PITat DEN11.74.46.2
Alge Crumpler – ATLat NO11.04.65.6
Desmond Clark – CHIat PHI11.04.65.6
Greg Olsen – CHIat PHI10.85.05.8
Owen Daniels – HOUvs TEN10.75.86.5
Ben Watson – NEat MIA9.74.64.2
Eric Johnson – NOvs ATL9.35.75.0
Zach Miller – OAKvs KC8.36.34.6
Marcedes Lewis – JACvs IND8.36.14.3
Randy McMichael – STLat SEA8.26.34.5
Chris Baker – NYJat CIN7.96.14.1
LJ Smith – PHIvs CHI7.76.74.4
David Martin – MIAvs NE7.66.54.1
Bo Scaife – TENat HOU7.46.64.0
Marcus Pollard – SEAvs STL7.46.53.9
Reggie Kelly – CINvs NYJ7.26.53.7
Daniel Graham – DENvs PIT6.96.73.7
Anthony Becht – TBat DET6.95.82.7
Dan Campbell – DETvs TB6.75.82.5
Visanthe Shiancoe – MINat DAL6.76.63.2
Alex Smith – TBat DET6.66.93.5
Vernon Davis – SFat NYG6.47.33.7
Ben Utecht – INDat JAC6.36.02.3
George Wrighster – JACvs IND6.26.93.2
Tony Scheffler – DENvs PIT6.26.93.1
Robert Royal – BUFvs BAL6.17.23.2
Jeb Putzier – HOUvs TEN6.06.22.2
Itula Mili – SEAvs STL6.06.42.4
Kyle Brady – NEat MIA6.07.23.2
Matt Spaeth – PITat DEN5.66.62.2
Ben Troupe – TENat HOU5.47.32.7
Quinn Sypniewski – BALat BUF5.37.62.9
Anthony Fasano – DALvs MIN4.97.52.4
Matt Schobel – PHIvs CHI4.77.92.7
Leonard Pope – ARIat WAS4.57.92.4
Justin Peelle – MIAvs NE4.47.92.3

Tony Gonzalez, KC (15.7 rating): Gonzo is on a roll with 100 yard games in two consecutive weeks. At this rate Gonzalez would finish the year with over 100 catches and 1100 yards. He should have another good game this week against the Raiders, as he has really seemed to find a rhythm with Chiefs’ quarterback Damon Huard.

LJ Smith, PHI (7.7 rating): LJ is battling injury issues once again. Although he made his return to the field last week in the Eagles win over the Jets, he only had one catch for eight yards. He is being held out of practice again this week, and if even if he does see the field he won’t be worth starting except in the most dire of circumstances.

Matt Stover – BALat BUF15.72.07.7
Stephen Gostkowski – NEat MIA15.02.57.5
Nick Folk – DALvs MIN15.02.87.8
Adam Vinatieri – INDat JAC14.82.67.4
Shayne Graham – CINvs NYJ14.13.17.2
Kris Brown – HOUvs TEN14.03.07.0
Josh Brown – SEAvs STL13.63.06.6
Jeff Reed – PITat DEN13.53.16.6
Lawrence Tynes – NYGvs SF13.13.36.4
David Akers – PHIvs CHI12.73.66.2
Matt Bryant – TBat DET12.33.76.0
Olindo Mare – NOvs ATL12.33.96.2
Robbie Gould – CHIat PHI12.24.16.3
Shaun Suisham – WASvs ARI12.13.75.8
Neil Rackers – ARIat WAS11.94.26.1
Jason Hanson – DETvs TB11.94.36.2
John Carney – JACvs IND11.74.15.8
Dave Rayner – KCat OAK11.44.25.7
Jason Elam – DENvs PIT11.44.45.9
Mike Nugent – NYJat CIN11.44.15.4
Morten Andersen – ATLat NO11.34.25.5
Rian Lindell – BUFvs BAL11.14.25.3
Ryan Longwell – MINat DAL11.04.55.5
Rob Bironas – TENat HOU10.94.35.2
Sebastian Janikowski – OAKvs KC10.94.75.7
Jeff Wilkins – STLat SEA10.44.75.1
Jay Feely – MIAvs NE10.14.95.1
Joe Nedney – SFat NYG9.75.14.8

Kris Brown, HOU (14.0 rating): You can’t ask much more of a kicker than what Kris Brown is doing right now. Brown is now 16/17 on the season, including a perfect 3/3 from beyond 50 yards. He has made at least three field goals in each of his last three games. Brown has gone from a bye week fill-in to an every week starter in most leagues.

Neil Rackers, ARI (11.9 rating): Arizona’s offense is banged up heading into Washington to take on the NFC’s top defense, in both yards and points allowed per game. Wide receiver Anquan Boldin may return to the field, but the Cardinals will most likely have third string quarterback Tim Rattay under center in relief of Kurt Warner. A backup quarterback against a top defense on the road is not a recipe for the success of a fantasy kicker.

Team DefenseOpponentRatingRiskReward
New Englandat MIA15.63.28.7
Baltimoreat BUF15.32.98.2
Pittsburghat DEN13.94.07.9
New York Giantsvs SF13.93.37.2
Washingtonvs ARI13.83.77.6
Seattlevs STL12.93.46.3
Chicagoat PHI12.64.36.9
Dallasvs MIN12.54.46.9
Philadelphiavs CHI11.94.76.6
Kansas Cityat OAK11.63.95.6
Houstonvs TEN11.54.25.7
Tennesseeat HOU11.25.26.4
Tampa Bayat DET11.15.66.6
Oaklandvs KC10.85.26.0
Minnesotaat DAL10.85.96.7
Indianapolisat JAC10.75.46.1
Buffalovs BAL10.54.95.4
New Orleansvs ATL10.44.65.0
Cincinnativs NYJ9.94.44.4
Jacksonvillevs IND9.76.25.9
Arizonaat WAS9.65.75.3
Denvervs PIT9.46.05.4
San Franciscoat NYG9.35.44.7
Atlantaat NO7.86.24.0
New York Jetsat CIN7.56.43.9
Detroitvs TB7.26.43.6
St. Louisat SEA6.66.32.9
Miamivs NE4.77.62.2

Baltimore (15.3 rating): The Ravens are riding their defense once again, and although they might not be the dominating unit they were back in their Superbowl year, they can still get the job done. The Ravens’ next opponent, Buffalo, has scored the third lowest points per game in the NFL this year. In their last game against Dallas their offense could only manage three points, and the Bills lost the game despite scoring three times on defense and special teams. The Ravens should be able to capitalize on this offense by holding them under 14 points with several big defensive plays.

Minnesota (10.8 rating): Despite winning the game against Chicago last week, Minnesota had trouble stopping Brian Griese and the Bears’ passing attack. If they cannot stop the Bears’ passing game I fear for what Dallas may do to them. These Vikes are a scrappy bunch, and they are capable of some big defensive plays (they lead the league in defensive touchdowns) but I cannot recommend them this week against Dallas.

Special thanks to SwiperNoSwiping, treat24, dream_017, Jimboozie, WaCougMBS, and MoDee 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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