This week’s sleeper hasn’t started a game snce a forgettable 2008 Wild Card performance, or lack thereof, against the Philadelphia Eagles. He may get an opportunity to start this weekend however, and it will be big news if he does, as it will end a streak that dates back to 1992.
Tarvaris Jackson | QB | Minnesota | 2 percent Yahoo! ownership
With news that Brett Favre has fractures in two bones in his ankle, it appears Tarvaris Jackson could be in line for a start Sunday against the New England Patriots. Keeping in mind Favre’s on and off field struggles this season, a big start from Jackson against the soft Patriots pass defense (282.0 yards per game allowed, 12 touchdowns and a 94.1 passer rating against) could be all the reason popular preseason Super Bowl pick Minnesota needs to shelve Favre and allow his ankle time to heal sufficiently (i.e. save face and not technically bench Favre).
Jackson will be surrounded by tantalizing weapons that include Percy Harvin, Adrian Peterson, Visanthe Shiancoe and Randy Moss, who should be expected to play at max effort against his previous employer this weekend. With such a bevy of options to march the ball toward the end zone, there is reason to believe Jackson could be a valuable fantasy signal caller to desperate owners if he’s given the opportunity to play.
Coming out of Football Championship Subdivision (formerly Division II) Alabama State, the toolsy Jackson struggled when thrust into action early, but showed signs of promise at the end of the 2008 regular season. Serving as Favre’s backup last year, allowing him to further assimilate the Vikings playbook and the nuances of being an NFL quarterback, may be just what he needed to take things to the next level. Those in dynasty or deep keeper leagues would be wise to nab him immediately as he has a strong shot at opening next year as the starter if Favre doesn’t return. Those in shallow re-draft leagues should watch him closely this weekend but don’t need to race to the wire immediately for him. In deep (14 team or larger) leagues, or two quarterback formats, it might be prudent to nab Jackson now if you are in need of help at the position or simply have a flexible roster spot.
Josh Shepardson is one of a growing number of fantasy experts who write for the Cafe. You can catch up with Josh in the Cafe's forums where he posts under the name of B-Chad.
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