Fantasy Football Week 1: Who Are the Toxic Players To Avoid?

RM Herold@@BR_RollinFeatured ColumnistSeptember 8, 2010

Fantasy Football Week 1: Who Are the Toxic Players To Avoid?

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    It's the first week of the NFL season, but it's also your first week of the season as the Head Coach of the Bad Bad Men.

    Oh, sorry that's my team.

    But yes, as a fantasy owner you have to start the year off right. No giving away games early or it will come back to haunt you come playoff time.

    So you can't take any chances unless it's a flex receiver and you really don't have anyone else to put there. Don't gamble on guys who were picked up after they were cut from another team.

    There's probably a reason they were cut.

    Here's a list of guys who might be what you need later, but you can't go to them early.

10. C.J. Spiller

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    Yeah, the kid has been named the starter. And yeah, he is exciting and will probably be the only guy you would pay money to come watch if you were going to a Buffalo game, but he is sharing a crowded backfield.

    I drafted him kind of high, (in my auction draft, I...umm...got caught up in the moment) but I'm sitting him.

    We don't know yet if Fred Jackson will steal carries away or if Marshawn Lynch will find his old form.

    I would wait a week with Spiller unless you have no choice.

9. Brett Favre

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    This is the same New Orleans defense that beat him up last winter in the playoffs. They blitzed him and hit the old guy as much as they could.

    And he had Sidney Rice to toss to then, and a healthy Percy Harvin.

    Don't forget Chester Taylor was his sure-handed third down back all last year and he's gone.

    You can go with Favre if you want to, but I wish I was playing you.

8. Matt Hasselbeck

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    I'm not one of these guys who beats on Hasselbeck. I think he has had pretty good career.

    But he has taken some serious hits over the past few years and his time in the league seems to be winding down.

    All that being said, there will be weeks this year when I think he will be a cool sleeper start. Especially if he starts connecting with my late pick, Mike Williams.

    But this isn't the week. Not with Patrick Willis and the boys coming to town.

    I just hope Matt gets out of this game alive.

7. LaDainian Tomlinson

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    I get it. You stole LT late in the draft and you think he would be perfect as a flex start this week because he ran so hard and broke some big ones in the preseason.

    But this is a Ravens D that, even without Ed Reed, likes to hit hard and often.

    And they love to stop the run.

    Since Mark Sanchez is struggling, you can believe that Baltimore is going to put 10 in the box and dare the "Sanchize" to beat them through the air.

    Tomlinson might catch a few for your PPR leagues, but don't count on too much on the ground.

6. Mike Sims-Walker

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    MSW was a pleasant surprise last year and probably won a few games for some fantasy owners, me included. But all that did was mark him as the No. 1 receiver for the Jags.

    That means he gets Champ Bailey all day. Champ doesn't get mentioned with the best of the best anymore, so I'm sure he'd like to remedy that by tossing his hat back into the ring.

    If you have another guy to go to, you might want to come back to Sims-Walker another week.

5. LeSean McCoy

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    I think the Green Bay Packers are going to come out and score early and often against the Eagles this weekend.

    I think the crowd is going to be silent and the Eagles are going to have to throw to catch up. We know the Eagles are a passing team, and we know Kolb already has tossed for 300-yard games. What you might not know is that the Pack doesn't give up rushing touchdowns. Or at least they didn't last year.

    McCoy is good and is definitely a No. 2 back—possibly a No. 1 some weeks. But don't expect him to give you much against this team.

4. Joe Flacco

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    I am in trouble.

    And so are you if you have Joe Flacco as your starting quarterback this week. It would have been bad enough going up against the Jets defense without Darrelle Revis, but now...

    Unless Revis is out of shape, right? Ugh.

    I would love to believe Flacco can get it to Anquan Boldin and maybe even new guy T.J. Houshmandzadeh, but the odds aren't in my favor.

    Nor are they in yours. Hit the waiver wire like I am about to.

3. Pierre Thomas

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    Thomas is the lead back over Reggie Bush, but this might be one of those weeks where you go with the back that catches the ball over the one that runs it.

    The Vikings don't like people trying to run on them. And they really don't like backs trying to score rushing touchdowns.

    Brees through the air is probably how this game is going to be decided. And Brees hits Bush through the air. Not Thomas.

2. Terrell Owens

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    I predict the Terrell Owens catches more passes than Ochocinco this year because Owens is a better wide receiver.

    Yeah, Owens is older and Chad has played with Carson longer, but TO has something to prove.

    All that being said, he isn't going to do much against the Pats this week, if you look at how he did against them in the two games he played for the Bills last year.

    Yes, Palmer is better than Trent Edwards, but Owens is a year older.

    And I doubt the Patriots are going to double-team Ochocinco. This being his first game with the Bengals, he will catch a few, but not enough that he should start.

    You probably didn't draft TO that high, which means you have better guys in front of him.

    I'd go with them.

1. Clinton Portis

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    Portis has killed me a couple times in fantasy, so maybe this is some bitterness talking, but I can't see Dallas letting Portis get going, which would then open up things for Donovan McNabb.

    And because Larry Johnson woke up in the preseason, Portis will share carries like he tends to anyway.

    If you have to start Portis, you might be in trouble; I stayed as far away from him as I could this draft season.

    By the way, there was also talk of a late preseason ankle sprain.

    Yikes.