Quarterback to Start
Matt Schaub vs SEA – If Schaub does play, and all signs point to him starting this week, expect a pass heavy attack. He had an MRI and the results were favorable. The Texans lost Steve Slaton to the IR this week, which means Chris Brown will be shouldering most of the workload (Ryan Moats apparently isn’t an option anymore, even though he leads the team in YPC). Schaub should be a go this week, as he came back last week after having the shoulder knocked back in place and played quite well, earning some toughness points in the process. The Seahawks allowed Alex Smith and the new 49ers spread offense to have their way, and Smith racked up a career high in yardage. Expect better numbers from Schaub.
Other QBs to Start
Donovan McNabb at NYG, Alex Smith vs ARI, Joe Flacco vs DET, Vince Young vs STL
Quarterback to Sit
Jay Cutler vs GB – Think Charles Woodson is licking his chops this week? Oh yeah. Cutler couldn’t get it done against the Rams last week, and his last fantasy-worthy game was back in the beginning of November. The Packers' defense is the real deal, and they haven’t allowed a QB to score double digit points in their last two games. Really, unless your league runs into Week 17 of the season when the Bears play the Lions, Cutler should be on your fantasy bench. This one should be ugly.
Other QBs to Sit
Kyle Orton at IND , Matt Hasselbeck at HOU
Running Back to Start
Quinton Ganther at OAK – It appears that Ganther is taking over as the Redskins' starting running back and it is just in time for a nice matchup against the Raiders, his hometown team. Ganther has done more with his touches in a limited role (4.6 YPC) and honestly, Rock Cartwright isn’t that good. The Redskins coaching staff also likes his skills as a blocker and pass-catcher, meaning he could fit the bill as an every-down running back. Fantasy owners who are dealing with a loss of Steve Slaton could do a lot worse than picking up Ganther and starting him this week. There always seems to be a player that comes out of nowhere and give fantasy owners a boost down the stretch, maybe he’s the guy?
Other RBs to Start
Ryan Grant at CHI, Jamaal Charles vs BUF, Fred Jackson at KC, Knowshon Moreno at IND
Running Back to Sit
Cedric Benson at MIN – Oh yeah, he rushed for 110 yards, but it took him 36 carries to get there—against the Lions on 36 carries, he should have easily had 200 yards rushing. So, it’s safe to say that the hip injury might be lingering. The Vikings have only allowed two running backs to break 100 yards and haven’t allowed one to score double digit fantasy points in five of their last six games. Oh yeah, and they’re better at home, where they haven’t allowed a 100-yard rusher all season long. Benson is no sure bet to crack 100 yards, and is even lesser of a bet to score a TD as the Vikes have only allowed two rushing TDs on the season, both scored by Ray Rice.
Other RBs to Sit
Kevin Smith at BAL, Marion Barber vs SD, Matt Forte vs GB, Jerome Harrison vs PIT
Wide Receiver to Start
Pierre Garcon vs DEN – I wish my associates who did the rankings with me here at the Lounge would rank Garcon accordingly, but I will give my boys the benefit of the doubt. He has flown under the radar the last few weeks. Garcon has scored double digit fantasy points the last four weeks and has been even better in PPR formats, where he has elevated his stock to WR2 status. Reggie Wayne and Dallas Clark are drawing all the attention of the opposing defense, leaving Garcon free to make plays. And he is capitalizing on his chances as he has taken over as Peyton Manning’s premier deep threat. The Broncos are pretty solid against the pass, but I believe that any Colts skill player is matchup proof and Garcon fits that bill. The Broncos will be just fine without Wayne and Clark beating them, but somebody has to do it.
Other WRs to Start
Terrell Owens at KC, Robert Meachem at ATL, Lee Evans at KC, Derrick Mason vs DET, Davone Bess at JAC, Michael Crabtree vs ARI, Percy Harvin vs CIN, Kenny Britt vs STL
Wide Receiver to Sit
T.J. Houshmandzadeh at HOU – Aside from his 9/165 against the Cards and the TD he scored against the Lions, he has played like waiver wire fodder for the last seven weeks. I think he has the potential to burn fantasy owners this week, based on the nice matchup, but Housh is as unreliable as they come this season and the also unreliable Matt Hasselbeck has a lot to do with it. Housh is not Seattle’s go-to-guy at WR, and is pretty much a boom or bust play this week; I prefer to label him a bust for start/sit purposes.
Other WRs to Sit
Roy Williams vs SD, Santana Moss at OAK, Jason Avant at NYG, Jerricho Cotchery at TB, Steve Breaston at SF