I don’t believe in vetoes. I mean, I believe they exist. I just don’t think they have a place in fantasy sports. Except in cases of collusion, trades shouldn’t get vetoed. Not by a commissioner. Not by a vote. Why? Because Randy Moss was waived by the Vikings. Less than a month ago, Minnesota “stole” Moss from the Patriots for a third round pick. At the time, many wondered how a contender like New England could trade one of the best receivers in the game for what comparatively looked like some magic beans. Why, when they have a chance to win now, would they make their team worse only to become marginally better in the future? It didn’t make sense.
Fast forward a few weeks and the Patriots have the best record in the NFL. They haven’t lost a game since they “gave up” their “best” receiver. Moreover, Moss is no longer a Viking. What appeared to be a sweetheart deal for Minnesota wasn’t so sweet after all. Combine the two transactions and they’ve done nothing more than forfeit a draft pick. What happened? Well, there are two possibilities. One is that Minnesota didn’t want the pick because they hate the NFL draft. Not likely, but not impossible. Remember the 2003 draft when the Vikings had the seventh overall pick? They refused to take a player within the allotted time, allowing Jacksonville to use pick seven to select quarterback Byron Leftwich. (Fun fact: Although many people criticized the Jaguars for taking Leftwich too soon, experts now agree the early selection was necessary for him to complete his throwing motion before the start of the ’03 season.)
While there is some evidence to suggest the Vikings are draft-averse, the more likely scenario is simply that some trades don’t go according to plan. It happens in NFL and in happens in fantasy. When is the last time you made a deal that didn’t work out the way you thought it would? It probably wasn’t that long ago. For me, it was earlier this year when I “bought low” on DeAngelo Williams and “sold high” Darren McFadden. Swing and a miss. I figured Williams would emerge as the lead running back in Carolina. I figured Jonathan Stewart would only be used as a change-of-pace back. I did a lot of figuring. I suppose you could argue that Stewart is a change-of-pace back in that he usually rushes for no gain to the left, while Williams typically rushes for no gain to the right. Either way, the trade didn’t work. And that’s the point. Whenever a deal goes down in any of our leagues, we all have opinions as to which team won or lost the trade. Sometimes we feel we made a better offer and wonder why our offer got rejected. These differences of opinion are part of what makes fantasy sports fun. However, they are still opinions and opinions are often wrong. Except is cases of collusion, it’s better to allow owners to be wrong than it is to veto his or her trade. Why? Because your version of wrong isn’t always right.
With that, let’s get to Start/Sit. Here at the Café, we rank all the players we expect could see a significant amount of game action each week. We factor in a player’s overall ability, his weekly match-up, and the current status of his health. The result is one Start/Sit number, based on a scale of 100, and we’ll use each member’s ratings to find an average for each player. The higher a guy is on our list, the better you should feel starting him. Finally, below each table, I will give my personal Start/Sit recommendations for each position. Without further ado, here’s Start/Sit for Week 9.
|1||Philip Rivers||SD||at HOU||95.20|
|2||Peyton Manning||IND||at PHI||92.80|
|4||Drew Brees||NO||at CAR||89.40|
|5||Tom Brady||NE||at CLE||86.00|
|6||Jay Cutler||CHI||at BUF||79.00|
|7||Ben Roethlisberger||PIT||at CIN||78.20|
|T-9||Eli Manning||NYG||at SEA||77.20|
|T-12||Mark Sanchez||NYJ||at DET||70.80|
|15||Josh Freeman||TB||at ATL||68.00|
|17||Matt Cassel||KC||at OAK||65.20|
|20||Chad Henne||MIA||at BAL||63.60|
|21||Jon Kitna||DAL||at GB||62.60|
|25||Derek Anderson||ARI||at MIN||52.40|
|29||Max Hall||ARI||at MIN||18.60|
Start: Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons. Matty Ice is starting to heat up. In his last three games, he’s thrown one, two and three touchdowns, respectively. If that trend were to continue, he’d throw for something like four touchdowns this week. It’s a free site, people.
If you need a more compelling argument (and you should), Ryan is at home to face Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers have coughed up seven passing touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks in their last three contests. Moreover, Ryan has thrown for more scores at home than on the road despite playing fewer home games to date. He should be started in all formats in Week 9.
Sit: Carson Palmer, Cincinnati Bengals. “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein
The last time Palmer was recommended as the “sit” in this column, he threw for over 400 yards and three touchdowns. This week, I’ll tempt fate and say he belongs on your bench against a tough Steelers defense. Besides, Albert Einstein’s intelligence was vastly overrated. That’s why you’ll often hear a person refer to someone as “Einstein” if they did something stupid.
|4||LaDainian Tomlinson||NYJ||at DET||85.40|
|5||Matt Forte||CHI||at BUF||84.40|
|T-7||Rashard Mendenhall||PIT||at CIN||83.00|
|9||Ahmad Bradshaw||NYG||at SEA||81.60|
|11||Jamaal Charles||KC||at OAK||80.40|
|12||Thomas Jones||KC||at OAK||78.00|
|14||Shonn Greene||NYJ||at DET||70.60|
|17||Ryan Mathews||SD||at HOU||68.96|
|18||Beanie Wells||ARI||at MIN||67.60|
|20||BenJarvus Green-Ellis||NE||at CLE||66.80|
|23||Chris Ivory||NO||at CAR||65.08|
|24||Felix Jones||DAL||at GB||65.04|
|25||Ronnie Brown||MIA||at BAL||65.00|
|28||Brandon Jacobs||NYG||at SEA||63.20|
|T-28||Mike Tolbert||SD||at HOU||63.20|
|30||Ricky Williams||MIA||at BAL||63.00|
|31||LeGarrette Blount||TB||at ATL||62.40|
|32||Mike Hart||IND||at PHI||58.26|
|33||Marion Barber||DAL||at GB||58.00|
|34||Cadillac Williams||TB||at ATL||57.60|
|35||Danny Woodhead||NE||at CLE||57.40|
|36||Ladell Betts||NO||at CAR||54.20|
|38||Chester Taylor||CHI||at BUF||49.00|
|40||Tim Hightower||ARI||at MIN||45.60|
|42||Darren Sproles||SD||at HOU||43.60|
|46||Donald Brown||IND||at PHI||41.44|
|50||Tashard Choice||DAL||at GB||35.60|
|54||Mewelde Moore||PIT||at CIN||27.20|
|55||Earnest Graham||TB||at ATL||26.40|
|57||Isaac Redman||PIT||at CIN||26.00|
Start: Matt Forte, Chicago Bears. Forte has rushed for a total of 52 yards in his last two games. During that time, he’s only averaging nine carries per contest. I’ll assume he was being kept in the backfield to help protect Jay Cutler. I’m sorry, I couldn’t resist.
While the Bears rushing attack has been less than impressive, it’s about to take on a Buffalo defense that had only held one team under 100 yards rushing all season. If there was ever a week for Forte to get going, it’s Week 9 against the Bills.
Sit: Marshawn Lynch, Seattle Seahawks. Lynch is the starter in Seattle, but he’ll continue to lose touches to both Justin Forsett and Leon Washington, especially in passing situations. Combine that with an ever-improving Giants defense and Lynch is unlikely to have the running room or the opportunity needed for a big day.
|2||Reggie Wayne||IND||at PHI||89.20|
|4||Miles Austin||DAL||at GB||84.40|
|7||Brandon Marshall||MIA||at BAL||82.20|
|9||Hakeem Nicks||NYG||at SEA||81.00|
|10||Wes Welker||NE||at CLE||80.80|
|11||Hines Ward||PIT||at CIN||79.40|
|12||Larry Fitzgerald||ARI||at MIN||79.00|
|13||Pierre Garcon||IND||at PHI||76.80|
|T-13||Marques Colston||NO||at CAR||76.80|
|15||Mike Williams||TB||at ATL||75.60|
|17||Steve Smith||NYG||at SEA||74.40|
|18||Mike Wallace||PIT||at CIN||74.20|
|19||Dwayne Bowe||KC||at OAK||74.00|
|20||Johnny Knox||CHI||at BUF||73.80|
|22||Braylon Edwards||NYJ||at DET||72.60|
|24||Deion Branch||NE||at CLE||69.68|
|28||Santonio Holmes||NYJ||at DET||67.60|
|30||Steve Breaston||ARI||at MIN||66.51|
|33||Mario Manningham||NYG||at SEA||65.60|
|36||Lance Moore||NO||at CAR||62.80|
|37||Davone Bess||MIA||at BAL||60.80|
|38||Roy Williams||DAL||at GB||60.40|
|T-38||Patrick Crayton||SD||at HOU||60.40|
|41||Robert Meachem||NO||at CAR||59.60|
|43||Jerricho Cotchery||NYJ||at DET||58.80|
|44||Dez Bryant||DAL||at GB||58.60|
|45||Austin Collie||IND||at PHI||58.13|
|49||Devin Hester||CHI||at BUF||50.60|
|51||Brandon Tate||NE||at CLE||49.40|
|54||Devery Henderson||NO||at CAR||46.20|
|55||Seyi Ajirotutu||SD||at HOU||45.40|
|60||Earl Bennett||CHI||at BUF||43.20|
|62||Brian Hartline||MIA||at BAL||42.20|
|63||Early Doucet||ARI||at MIN||42.00|
|65||Sammie Stroughter||TB||at ATL||41.80|
|67||Chris Chambers||KC||at OAK||40.80|
|69||Dexter McCluster||KC||at OAK||40.60|
|71||Antwaan Randle El||PIT||at CIN||38.40|
|74||Devin Aromashodu||CHI||at BUF||36.00|
|75||Arrelious Benn||TB||at ATL||32.20|
|76||Julian Edelman||NE||at CLE||32.00|
|78||Legedu Naanee||SD||at HOU||31.30|
|80||Blair White||IND||at PHI||29.00|
|82||Michael Spurlock||TB||at ATL||26.00|
|85||Malcom Floyd||SD||at HOU||24.76|
|86||Andre Roberts||ARI||at MIN||24.00|
|89||Brad Smith||NYJ||at DET||16.20|
Start: Hines Ward, Pittsburgh Steelers. I’m giving the Steelers offense a pass for last week. Ben Roethlisberger and company had been on a roll prior to Week 8, and I’m willing to forgive one hiccup against the Super Bowl champs. Ward didn’t do much either against the Saints (3/15/0), but came awfully close to catching a 40-yard touchdown that would have saved his day. I’m betting the Steelers bounce back this week versus Cincinnati and that Ward is a big part of the reason.
Sit: Santonio Holmes, New York Jets. Whenever a receiver drops a pass, it’s always referred to as a “key drop.” The term is undoubtedly being overused. It’s gotten to the point where a player can’t drop a single pass without it being consequential. I feel like our standards for what constitutes a “key drop” should be higher. Anyway, weather you agree or not, Holmes had a variety of drops last week. So far this year, he’s averaging just over three catches per game. Considering his most recent performance, along with the Jets pension for running the ball, it’s tough to see Holmes increasing that average this week.
|1||Jason Witten||DAL||at GB||81.00|
|2||Dustin Keller||NYJ||at DET||80.00|
|3||Aaron Hernandez||NE||at CLE||78.40|
|6||Greg Olsen||CHI||at BUF||72.80|
|7||Tony Moeaki||KC||at OAK||71.80|
|8||Jeremy Shockey||NO||at CAR||71.12|
|11||Antonio Gates||SD||at HOU||70.35|
|T-12||Jacob Tamme||IND||at PHI||69.80|
|T-12||Kellen Winslow||TB||at ATL||69.80|
|T-16||Heath Miller||PIT||at CIN||69.00|
|21||Kevin Boss||NYG||at SEA||61.80|
|23||Anthony Fasano||MIA||at BAL||59.00|
|25||Rob Gronkowski||NE||at CLE||52.40|
|26||Ben Patrick||ARI||at MIN||49.40|
|30||Randy McMichael||SD||at HOU||25.60|
Start: Visanthe Shiancoe, Minnesota Vikings. He’s been my “sit” for the last two weeks and he’s delivered. Shiancoe didn’t reach 40 yards or find the end zone in either game. So why the change of heart? Randy Moss. That’s the reason. Moss is gone, and that means Shiancoe has become something of an endangered species. Namely, a Vikings pass-catcher with the ability to get open. He should see a lot targets in Week 9 against Arizona.
Sit: Jeremy Shockey, New Orleans Saints. Shockey is still talented enough to have a big game. Unfortunately, predicting said game is next to impossible thanks to Drew Brees’ ability to spread the ball around.
Start: New York Giants. We’ve already established that Marshawn Lynch isn’t going anywhere.
Sit: Detroit Lions. The Lions earned a win over Washington last week by stopping Rex Grossman with the game on the line. Apparently, starting quarterback Donovan McNabb was a little tuckered and head coach Mike Shanahan felt Grossman gave them a better chance to win. I find it hard to believe that a professional athlete can make it through 98% of a game and not get through the last 2% on some combination of adrenaline and Chunky™ soup.
|1||Robbie Gould||CHI||at BUF||86.20|
|T-2||Kris Brown||SD||at HOU||85.40|
|4||Stephen Gostkowski||NE||at CLE||83.60|
|5||Nick Folk||NYJ||at DET||82.20|
|11||Adam Vinatieri||IND||at PHI||78.40|
|12||Jeff Reed||PIT||at CIN||78.20|
|13||Garrett Hartley||NO||at CAR||77.60|
|15||Lawrence Tynes||NYG||at SEA||76.00|
|16||Dan Carpenter||MIA||at BAL||75.40|
|18||Ryan Succop||KC||at OAK||71.40|
|19||David Buehler||DAL||at GB||70.80|
|20||Jay Feely||ARI||at MIN||69.00|
|T-23||Connor Barth||TB||at ATL||65.80|
Start: Mason Crosby, Green Bay Packers. He accounted for all of Green Bay’s points last week and the Cowboys haven’t been synonymous with defensive excellence lately.
Sit: Jason Hanson, Detroit Lions. Just because.
Drew is a lifelong Jets fan. Playing and writing about fantasy football has proven helpful in easing the pain.
Want to write for the Cafe? Check out the Cafe's Pencil & Paper section!