It’s closing in on the weekend, and that means it’s time for the next installment of the Cafe’s Start & Sit! Last week saw some huge scores across fantasy leagues as backs like Thomas Jones, Adrian Peterson, Deangelo Williams, and Maurice Jones-Drew went off, and the potent passing attacks of Pittsburgh, New Orleans, and New England had huge days as well. Hopefully you were on the right side of most of those big games. And with that, I’ll say a quick thanks to our rankers, and move on to the rankings! (Reminder: The Ravens, Broncos, Lions, Jaguars, Seahawks, and Titans are on their byes this week)
|1||Peyton Manning||IND||at STL||99.00|
|2||Drew Brees||NO||at MIA||93.40|
|3||Tom Brady||NE||at TB||93.20|
|4||Aaron Rodgers||GB||at CLE||91.20|
|5||Philip Rivers||SD||at KC||87.20|
|9||Matt Ryan||ATL||at DAL||81.60|
|10||Donovan McNabb||PHI||at WAS||81.40|
|11||Kurt Warner||ARI||at NYG||80.00|
|12||Jay Cutler||CHI||at CIN||79.20|
|15||Brett Favre||MIN||at PIT||71.20|
|17||Shaun Hill||SF||at HOU||63.20|
|18||Mark Sanchez||NYJ||at OAK||63.00|
|26||Ryan Fitzpatrick||BUF||at CAR||41.80|
Start: Phillip Rivers, Chargers. San Diego has had their troubles this season, but Phillip is still throwing the ball around. Rivers is on pace for almost 5000 yards on the season, and with great receivers like Vincent Jackson and Antonio Gates, and a defense that will put them in a lot of holes, there’s no reason to think he will slow down too much. He has a good matchup this week in Kansas City against one of the league’s worst defenses.
Start: Eli Manning, Giants. Manning and the Giants were contained by New Orleans last week, but this week New York gets Arizona at home. I recommended starting Hasselbeck against the Cards last week, and Arizona’s defense stepped up. Still, the Cardinals are allowing the second most passing yards per game in the NFL. At home, the Giants should be able to bounce back from last week and Manning ought to have a good game.
Sit: Mark Sanchez, Jets. I recommended sitting Sanchez last week as well, and he ended up having the worst game of his young career. A game against the Raiders may seem like a good bounce-back start, but the Raiders arent quite as weak as they may seem on defense. Led by Richard Seymour and Nnamdi Asomugha, the Raiders shut down the Eagles last week in Oakland. There’s no reason to expect that Sanchez will fair much better.
Sit: Chad Henne, Dolphins. Henne had a great game against Jets two weeks ago and the Dolphins have had a bye week to rest up, but the Saints should be a tough matchup for them this week. Gregg Williams has done a masterful job resurrecting New Orleans’ defense, and his intricate blitz packages could give the young Henne trouble. It would be a risk to expect Henne to continue where he left off in his last game.
|2||Adrian Peterson||MIN||at PIT||84.20|
|3||Michael Turner||ATL||at DAL||84.00|
|4||Frank Gore||SF||at HOU||83.52|
|5||Joseph Addai||IND||at STL||81.00|
|8||Ryan Grant||GB||at CLE||79.40|
|T-8||Thomas Jones||NYJ||at OAK||79.40|
|10||Brian Westbrook||PHI||at WAS||77.50|
|11||Matt Forte||CHI||at CIN||77.00|
|T-11||Donald Brown||IND||at STL||77.00|
|16||Marshawn Lynch||BUF||at CAR||75.20|
|17||LaDanian Tomlinson||SD||at KC||74.09|
|19||Pierre Thomas||NO||at MIA||73.18|
|20||Laurence Maroney||NE||at TB||72.80|
|21||Leon Washington||NYJ||at OAK||72.40|
|24||Fred Jackson||BUF||at CAR||70.20|
|28||Darren Sproles||SD||at KC||67.20|
|29||Tim Hightower||ARI||at NYG||66.80|
|33||LeSean McCoy||PHI||at WAS||61.40|
|T-33||Glen Coffee||SF||at HOU||61.40|
|35||Mike Bell||NO||at MIA||61.00|
|36||Reggie Bush||NO||at MIA||60.70|
|38||Kevin Faulk||NE||at TB||57.50|
|39||Beanie Wells||ARI||at NYG||55.28|
|45||Chester Taylor||MIN||at PIT||50.60|
|47||BenJarvus Green-Ellis||NE||at TB||48.00|
|53||Garrett Wolfe||CHI||at CIN||24.60|
Start: Joseph Addai, Colts. Despite being overshadowed by Peyton Manning, and splitting carries with rookie Donald Brown, Addai has had a solid year – he’s on pace for about 1100 total yards and 13 touchdowns. He’s not seeing as many touches as he did in his best years as the Colts’ featured runner, but he’s making the most of the carries he gets, and he’s still getting a lot of work in the passing game. This week he has a great opportunity against the Rams. St. Louis has the league’s 26th ranked rushing defense (132.5 yards per game) and has allowed nine touchdowns on the year.
Start: Ryan Grant, Packers. Grant is pretty much the definition of an average fantasy back. He’s on pace for about 1100 yards rushing with 6 TDs, and another 40 catches and 300 yards receiving. Not bad, but he certainly hasn’t been anything to write home about (The Packers were even trying to upgrade before the trade deadline). This week, though, he gets the Browns, who not only have one of the league’s worst rush defenses, but have reportedly been ravaged by the flu. (One of the infected – pro-bowl defensive tackle Shaun Rogers).
Sit: Tim Hightower, Cardinals. Hightower has been a solid contributor, especially in PPR leagues, as he’s managed three touchdowns and 29 catches in Arizona’s five games. However, this week the Giants will be a tough matchup for Hightower and the Cardinals. The one positive, if you do need to start him, is that the Cardinals could easily fall behind early, allowing Hightower many opportunities to get involved in the passing game. He generally takes all the three-down work over his platoon-mate Chris Wells.
Sit: Glenn Coffee, 49ers. Coffee did a decent, if unspectacular job, filling in for injured Niners’ star runner Frank Gore. But it appears Gore is set to make his return this week, relegating Coffee to the bench, and to your fantasy bench as well.
|1||Reggie Wayne||IND||at STL||94.20|
|3||Randy Moss||NE||at TB||93.40|
|4||Roddy White||ATL||at DAL||88.80|
|5||Wes Welker||NE||at TB||87.40|
|6||Vincent Jackson||SD||at KC||87.20|
|7||Larry Fitzgerald||ARI||at NYG||86.60|
|8||Marques Colston||NO||at MIA||86.40|
|9||Greg Jennings||GB||at CLE||84.40|
|11||Donald Driver||GB||at CLE||81.20|
|15||DeSean Jackson||PHI||at WAS||78.40|
|20||Austin Collie||IND||at STL||70.20|
|22||Pierre Garcon||IND||at STL||68.80|
|23||Johnny Knox||CHI||at CIN||67.40|
|24||Devin Hester||CHI||at CIN||67.00|
|T-24||Sidney Rice||MIN||at PIT||67.00|
|26||Braylon Edwards||NYJ||at OAK||66.60|
|28||Lance Moore||NO||at MIA||65.00|
|30||Bernard Berrian||MIN||at PIT||64.00|
|31||Steve Breaston||ARI||at NYG||63.00|
|34||Devery Henderson||NO||at MIA||61.20|
|35||Terrell Owens||BUF||at CAR||61.00|
|36||Lee Evans||BUF||at CAR||60.80|
|38||Isaac Bruce||SF||at HOU||60.40|
|39||Jerricho Cotchery||NYJ||at OAK||59.90|
|40||Michael Jenkins||ATL||at DAL||59.60|
|41||Josh Morgan||SF||at HOU||58.80|
|42||Robert Meachem||NO||at MIA||58.00|
|43||Percy Harvin||MIN||at PIT||57.51|
|T-44||Michael Crabtree||SF||at HOU||57.40|
|T-47||Chris Chambers||SD||at KC||56.40|
|49||Jeremy Maclin||PHI||at WAS||56.20|
|52||Jason Avant||PHI||at WAS||53.00|
|54||Anquan Boldin||ARI||at NYG||52.34|
|57||Malcom Floyd||SD||at KC||51.00|
|59||Antwaan Randle El||WAS||PHI||49.20|
|63||Jerheme Urban||ARI||at NYG||47.20|
|64||David Clowney||NYJ||at OAK||46.80|
|66||James Jones||GB||at CLE||45.40|
|67||Earl Bennett||CHI||at CIN||45.20|
|74||Johnnie Lee Higgins||OAK||NYJ||36.80|
|75||Josh Reed||BUF||at CAR||35.60|
|80||Arnaz Battle||SF||at HOU||26.00|
Start: Hines Ward, Steelers. Ward and the Steelers put on a passing clinic last week against the Browns. The emergence of a dominant Pittsburgh passing attack puts Ward on pace for the highest yardage total of his career, and I think he could easily maintain that pace this week against the Vikings. Not only did the Vikings struggle last week in pass defense, but they lost their top cornerback Antoine Winfield to an ankle sprain.
Start: Chad Ochocinco, Bengals. Ochocinco has yet to have a huge game this year, but he has actually become one of the NFL’s more consistent receivers. In a week when the receiver pool is shrunken by six teams, Chad should be considered a starter in almost every league.
Sit: Isaac Bruce, 49ers. Who’s to say exactly how much the addition of Michael Crabtree will affect Bruce’s production, but the veteran wide-out wasn’t exactly putting up big numbers to start with. At this point, Bruce shouldn’t be considered to start in all but the deepest leagues. The Niners will continue to be a run-oriented team anyway, especially now that Frank Gore is healthy again.
Sit: Mohamed Massaquoi, Browns. There seems to be some real potential here – Massaquoi immediately registered on fantasy owners’ radar after his 148 yard game game against the Bengals in Week 4. But the Browns QB situation is a mess, and the talented rookie just isn’t getting many chances. This week’s opponent, Green Bay, has a pretty good pass defense, led by veteran CB Al Harris. The Packers rank 10th in the league in passing yard allowed (192.6 yards per game).
|1||Dallas Clark||IND||at STL||98.60|
|2||Antonio Gates||SD||at KC||96.00|
|4||Tony Gonzalez||ATL||at DAL||88.40|
|T-5||Brent Celek||PHI||at WAS||81.80|
|9||Vernon Davis||SF||at HOU||77.40|
|10||Greg Olsen||CHI||at CIN||76.20|
|11||Jeremy Shockey||NO||at MIA||74.00|
|13||Dustin Keller||NYJ||at OAK||70.80|
|14||Visanthe Shiancoe||MIN||at PIT||70.60|
|15||Jermichael Finley||GB||at CLE||70.20|
|16||Ben Watson||NE||at TB||69.00|
|20||Donald Lee||GB||at CLE||57.80|
|25||Derek Fine||BUF||at CAR||49.40|
|28||Stephen Spach||ARI||at NYG||47.00|
Start: Chris Cooley, Redskins. The Redskins have struggled mightily on offense, which has maybe scared some people away from Cooley, and not for no reason. But Cooley is still getting his catches (on pace for 72 catches, 829 yards). At home, on Monday Night, in a division game with his coach fighting for his job, I could see Cooley having a great game. His best game last season came against the Eagles (108 yards and a TD). At the very least, he could be the recipient of several Jason Campbell screens and dump-offs to avoid the dangerous Philly pass rush.
Sit: Dante Rosario, Panthers. Rosario had back to back solid games earlier in the year that made me think he could be a sleeper this season, but in the two games since he’s managed only one catch each. With TE Jeff King also vying for playing time, there just aren’t enough balls to go around in the Panthers anemic passing game. Dante is barely rosterable at this point.
|1||Stephen Gostkowski||NE||at TB||90.00|
|2||Ryan Longwell||MIN||at PIT||87.60|
|4||David Akers||PHI||at WAS||85.00|
|6||Jason Elam||ATL||at DAL||80.00|
|7||Neil Rackers||ARI||at NYG||79.00|
|8||Jay Feely||NYJ||at OAK||75.60|
|10||Rian Lindell||BUF||at CAR||73.60|
|13||Mason Crosby||GB||at CLE||68.80|
|15||Nate Kaeding||SD||at KC||68.00|
|18||Matt Stover||IND||at STL||66.00|
|19||John Carney||NO||at MIA||65.40|
|20||Joe Nedney||SF||at HOU||64.80|
|22||Robbie Gould||CHI||at CIN||64.40|
Start: David Akers, Eagles. The Redskins have given up the third most field goals in the league this season for two reasons: 1. Their defense tends to play a bend-but-don’t-break style that defends against big plays but often allows opposing offenses to maintain drives, and 2. The offense tends to put the defense in bad situations, but the defense is good enough to keep opposing teams out of the endzone. What I’m trying to say is… start Akers.
Sit: Nick Folk, Cowboys. Once considered one of the best fantasy kickers in the league, Folk has not reached double digit points since Week 1. Atlanta has allowed the 4th fewest points in the league this season. Folk is nothing more than an average fantasy kicker this year.
Start: Green Bay Packers. Coming off a shutout of the Detroit Lions, the Packers face another offense in turmoil in Cleveland. And in all honestly, the Browns are probably worse on offense than Detroit. The Packers make a good start once again.
Sit: Miami Dolphins. I don’t have to tell you twice to sit the defense playing Drew Brees and the Saints do I? To be honest, I’m not sure how they are ranked as high as they are…
Nick Hopkins is a Cafe member who has been contributing to the Start & Sit since 2006. He posts on the Cafe under the name terpfan. R.J. White is a fantasy blogger at the sports site FanHouse. Check out his work both here and there, and feel free to talk to him in the forums, where he posts under the name daullaz.
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