Fantasy Football: Week 9 NFL Player Breakdowns By Matchup

Keet BaileyCorrespondent IINovember 3, 2010

Jamaal Charles ran wild in Week 8.
Jamaal Charles ran wild in Week 8.Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Week 8 of fantasy football lacked explosive stars and great matchups, as the usual top performers were held fairly in check. However, there were still some huge game-breakers (see: Detroit Lions), and there is always promise for a turnaround in the next week.

Week 9 brings more optimism and even better fantasy matchups. Read on to see all of the fantasy matchups and player breakdowns for this week, along with player ratings:


New York Jets @ Detroit Lions

QB Mark Sanchez: Sanchez hasn’t done much for a few weeks now, and I don’t see him doing much more this week. **

RB Shonn Greene: Greene is getting touches here and there, but not enough to warrant a start unless you’re desperate. **

RB LaDainian Tomlinson: This matchup isn’t the greatest with the Lions defensive line playing so well. However, you don’t want to sit LT yet. ****

Santonio Holmes: Holmes hasn’t eclipsed the 50-yard mark in three games this year. He’s not a bad Flex option, however. ***

WR Braylon Edwards: With Keller, Holmes and Cotchery seeing more targets, I’m inclined to sit Edwards.  **

WR Jerricho Cotchery: He’s seeing more targets, but be cautious starting him. **

TE Dustin Keller: Keller should find the end zone once this week. Not a bad play here. ***

New York Defense: It’s no secret that their defense is very good. But the Lions offense is no joke. They aren’t a bad play, but there could be better options. **** 

Key Note: Kris Jenkins (NT) for the Jets is out for the season.

QB Matthew Stafford: This may be the week to sit Stafford. We saw what the Jets did to Aaron Rodgers last week. ***

RB Jahvid Best: Best should see more receptions out of the backfield. But he’s not a fantastic play here. ***

RB Kevin Smith: Kevin Smith has some value now with Best ailing. However, he should be sat this week. **

WR Calvin Johnson: Calvin Johnson is a safe play nearly every week. Keep him plugged in. ****

WR Nate Burleson: Burleson is becoming a better Flex play each week. That should change here, although against a tough Jets defense, it’ll be a tough play. ***

TE Brandon Pettigrew: Pettigrew is a nice play against the Jets who have struggled with TEs. ****

TE Tony Scheffler: Put Scheff back on the bench for now. Stafford prefers his WRs to his TEs. **

Detroit Defense: This defense is improving each week. This may not be a terrible play if they can shut down the running game. ***


New England Patriots @ Cleveland Browns

QB Tom Brady: Despite the Browns shutting down Drew Brees, I don’t believe lightning will strike twice. Get Brady in your lineup. ****

RB Fred Taylor: Taylor will probably be out again. They don’t need to rush him with the Law Firm running well last week. *

RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis: This is a good matchup for BJGE. Get him in. ****

RB/WR Danny Woodhead: He’s not a bad play in Flex PPR leagues. Limited rushes, however.

WR Deion Branch: Branch is ailing with a hamstring injury, but should be better this week. ***

WR Wes Welker: Welker doesn’t have a bad matchup here, but hasn’t deserved any better than your Flex spot. ***

WR Brandon Tate: Tate had a nice week against Minnesota and if Branch is limited in the game, he could be a nice option against a weak Browns secondary. ***

TE Rob Gronkowski: Gronkowski is hit or miss in the red zone. Sit until further notice. **

TE Aaron Hernandez: Hernandez continues to see receptions and yardage.  ***

Patriots Defense: The Browns offense still isn’t generating many points, and we’re still unsure who’s starting at QB. The Pats defense isn’t a terrible play this week. ***

QB Seneca Wallace: If Wallace can practice this week, he’ll most likely start. Delhomme most likely will sit another week. **

QB Colt McCoy: If McCoy does get the start, we still don’t recommend him on your roster. *

RB Peyton Hillis: Hillis should stay in your lineup. He’s getting a ton of touches. ****

RB Mike Bell: Bell isn’t going to see enough touches to warrant a fantasy start. *

WR Brian Robiskie: Robiskie shouldn’t be rostered. *

WR Mohamed Massaquoi: Mo Mass is still questionable, but shouldn’t be rostered either way. *

WR Chansi Stuckey: For deep leagues, Stuckey isn’t a bad Flex play. He’s seeing a good number of receptions. ***

WR Josh Cribbs: Cribbs doesn’t see enough receptions to warrant a start. *

TE Ben Watson: Watson has some value in deeper leagues as he’s seeing a good number of targets. ***

TE Evan Moore: He sees red zone looks. But the Browns aren’t in the red zone much. **

Cleveland Defense: The Cleveland defense played well against New Orleans, but don’t expect another two-touchdown day for that defense. **

Key note: Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace are both questionable with ankle sprains. Mohamed Massaquoi is questionable for Sunday’s matchup against the Patriots.

Chicago Bears @ Buffalo Bills

QB Jay Cutler: Cutler just isn’t on top of his game. The Bills secondary isn’t bad. He’s a QB2 this week, at best. ***

RB Matt Forte: His rushing stats won’t excite anybody, but he’s getting touches and yards while finding ways to score. ****

RB Chester Taylor: Taylor’s value is limited still. *

WR Devin Hester: The occasional return touchdown isn’t worth risking to keep starting a guy who doesn’t get very many passes his way. **

WR Johnny Knox: Knox is one of the best Flex plays in the league. ****

WR Devin Aromashodu: Aromashodu doesn’t see enough receptions to warrant a start. *

TE Greg Olsen: Inconsistent is Olsen’s middle name. There are many better TEs. **

Chicago Defense: The Bears defense is a nice sleeper this week, but don’t sleep on the Bills. ***

QB Ryan Fitzpatrick: Fitzpatrick made some mistakes and didn’t have a big day. He could be coming back to earth, but he’s not a bad QB2 this week. ***

RB C.J. Spiller: He had ten touches against Kansas City. He’s becoming a bigger role, but still shouldn’t be started yet. **

RB Fred Jackson: Jackson is a middle of the road Flex option this week. ***

WR Lee Evans: Evans is seeing consistent catches now. We want to see him get into the end zone more, however. ***

WR Steve Johnson: Johnson has scored in five straight games. Keep him in while he’s hot . ****

TE Shawn Nelson: Fitzpatrick doesn’t go to his TEs often. *

Buffalo Defense: They struggle against the run and will have to force Cutler to make mistakes. ***


New Orleans Saints @ Carolina Panthers

QB Drew Brees: Brees should rebound nicely as his last game against the Panthers wasn’t fantastic. ****

RB Pierre Thomas: Thomas will probably sit for another week and come back after the bye. *

RB Ladell Betts: Betts should stay benched. He had just four touches against Pittsburgh, and Chris Ivory is coming into his own. *

RB Chris Ivory: Despite a slight concussion, Ivory should be a go against Carolina. He’s a risky Flex play, but has value. ***

WR Marques Colston: Colston has been solid for the last few weeks. I like him to keep it up. ****

WR Lance Moore: Moore is a solid Flex play this week. He keeps seeing receptions in the red zone. ***

WR Devery Henderson: He only sees two to three carries a game. Pass. **

WR Robert Meachem: Meachem has put together a few solid weeks. He’s not a bad Flex play. ***

TE Jeremy Shockey: Shockey is losing receptions to David Thomas and Jimmy Graham. **

New Orleans: The Saints defense is a good start this week against a struggling Panthers offense. ****

QB Matt Moore: This isn’t a good week to start Moore. Surprisingly, he is the best option for Carolina. **

RB DeAngelo Williams: Williams could be out longer than expected as he’s struggling to walk around right now. *

RB Jonathan Stewart: As good a matchup as Stewart had last week, I’m losing faith. Keep him on the bench until he does something productive. **

WR Steve Smith: Even though Matt Moore played poorly in Week 8, Smith had a nice game. Keep him in, but stay cautious. ***

WR David Gettis: Gettis did not record a reception in Week 8. With Smith back, Gettis could be limited in receptions. **

WR Brandon LaFell: LaFell did record a touchdown in Week 8. He could be a sleeper in very deep leagues. ***

TE Jeff King: Jeff King has almost no fantasy value. *

TE Dante Rosario: Neither he or King has great value. *

Carolina Defense: I wouldn’t trust this defense with my snack pack, let alone my fantasy team. *


Miami Dolphins @ Baltimore Ravens

QB Chad Henne: Henne has done most of his damage on the road. However, this isn’t the best week for him, although he should be able to get to 250 yards. ***

RB Ronnie Brown: Brown can get the yardage, but he’s getting 15 carries a week. Not bad for a Flex option, however. ***

RB Ricky Williams: Williams is seeing more touches in the red zone. Not a bad Flex start against a struggling Ravens rush defense. ***

WR Brandon Marshall: Marshall can make plays out of nowhere and should be kept in the lineup. ****

WR Davone Bess: Bess is finding catches left and right. He should be plugged into your Flex, especially in PPR leagues. ****

WR Brian Hartline: Hartline continues to see receptions. Keep him in your Flex. ***

TE Anthony Fasano: Fasano is a nice TE for deep leagues. He generally catches around four balls a game. ***

Miami Defense: The Miami defense is improving, and they are my sleeper this week against the Ravens. ***

QB Joe Flacco: Flacco is a mediocre QB2 this week against a slightly improved secondary. ***

RB Ray Rice: Rice is seeing the touches and producing. Keep him in. ****

RB Willis McGahee: McGahee has medium goal-line value at best. **

WR Anquan Boldin: Keep plugging Boldin in, as he’s finding ways to reward fantasy owners. ****

WR Derrick Mason: Mason isn’t a bad PPR guy in deeper leagues.***

WR TJ Houshmandzadeh: He’s not getting enough looks from Flacco to warrant any starts. *

TE Todd Heap: He has three touchdowns in his last two contests. He’s slowly seeing more receptions in the red zone. However, he’s still playing injured. ***

Baltimore Defense: Right now, it’s hard to trust a Ravens D that seems to be giving up more points than they should be. ***


Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Atlanta Falcons

QB Josh Freeman: Freeman isn’t a bad QB2 this week against the Falcons secondary. ***

RB Carnell Williams: Just seven touches in Week 8. Get him back on the bench. **

RB LaGarette Blount: Blount is looking like the man in Tampa Bay now. I like the matchup this week. ****

WR Mike Williams: Williams is turning into a very respectable Flex WR. ****

WR Michael Spurlock: Inconsistent number of catches makes me not want to roster him. *

WR Sammie Stroughter: Zero catches in Week 8. No reason to put him in the lineup. *

TE Kellen Winslow: Winslow seems to be struggling, with Freeman finding Mike Williams more. Winslow may need to be played on a strictly matchup basis, and this is a good one. ****

Tampa Bay Defense: Matt Ryan and Roddy White are hot. Don’t play this defense in Week 9. **

QB Matt Ryan: Ryan is developing into a respectable QB1 in deeper formats and a very good QB2. Get him in this week. ****

RB Michael Turner: Turner rebounded pretty well against Cincinnati. I like him against the Bucs this week. ****

RB Jason Snelling: Snelling is a great handcuff, but he’s not reliable enough to start. **

WR Roddy White: White is the No.1 fantasy wideout. Keep him in every week. *****

WR Michael Jenkins: Jenkins isn’t a bad Flex play in deeper leagues. I like the matchup this week, however. ***

WR Brian Finneran: With Jenkins back in the lineup, it’s time to get Finneran out of your lineup. *

TE Tony Gonzalez: Gonzalez is inconsistent. The matchup against Tampa Bay is favorable, however. ***

Atlanta Defense: This isn’t a bad week to start Atlanta’s defense, but be cautious. ***


San Diego Chargers @ Houston Texans

QB Philip Rivers: Rivers still produces weekly, and against this secondary, he should be a top five QB1. *****

RB Ryan Mathews: Mathews finally got in the end zone for the second time this year. He’s a risky play this week. ***

RB Mike Tolbert: Tolbert bounced back and showed that he still has some value. It’s just tough predicting his yards, although he keeps finding the end zone. ***

WR Malcolm Floyd: We’ll keep you updated on Floyd. If he plays, he’s a great start.  ***

WR Legedu Naanee: Naanee will most likely be out against the Texans. *

WR Patrick Crayton: Crayton isn’t a bad option being the No.1 or No. 2 receiver, at worst. Not a bad Flex in deeper leagues. ***

TE Antonio Gates: We will keep you up to date with Gates as he has an injury on both feet and could miss time. If he plays, he's a great start each week. *****

San Diego Defense: I think the Chargers will get to Schaub this week, but will struggle with Foster. Mediocre play. ***

Key note: Buster Davis went on the IR as of November 2nd.

QB Matt Schaub: Schaub has to go against a tough defense and I think he gets roughed up this week. ** 

RB Arian Foster: I’d keep Foster in the lineup as he keeps producing regardless of defense. ****

WR Andre Johnson: There’s a small chance Johnson sits this week. If he plays, he’s a good start. ****

WR Kevin Walter: Walter is just not getting it done. Consider benching until he learns how to hold onto the ball. **

WR Jacoby Jones: Jones isn’t worth a start unless another receiver goes down. *

TE Owen Daniels: Daniels had a nice Week 7, but Week 8 was a different story. There are better plays this week. **

Texans Defense: One of the worst pass defenses against the top passing offense in the league does not bode well for the Texans Defense. *


New York Giants @ Seattle Seahawks

QB Eli Manning: I like Eli to have a big game this week against a mediocre secondary. ****

RB Ahmad Bradshaw: Bradshaw is still getting the touches, and even though Seattle’s rush defense is stingy, I like Bradshaw. ****

RB Brandon Jacobs: He’s getting all the red zone scores and has had a touchdown in four consecutive games. Not a bad Flex play. ***

WR Steve Smith: Smith proved me wrong against the Cowboys, and it looks as if we should start getting him in the Flex spot more often. ***

WR Hakeem Nicks: Nicks is the top red zone target in New York. Keep him in. ****

WR Mario Manningham: Manningham isn’t a bad Flex play in deep leagues. The matchup is favorable. ***

TE Kevin Boss: There are still many better options at tight end. *

TE Travis Beckum: He’s still seeing barely one reception a game. *

New York Defense: This is an excellent week to start the Giants hard-nosed defense. ****

QB Matt Hasselbeck: I’m sitting Hasselbeck this week against the Giants, who are murdering quarterbacks. *

RB Marshawn Lynch: Lynch should be sat for the second week in a row. **

RB Justin Forsett: Forsett isn’t a terrible Flex play, as he tends to get touches. But this week could be bad for him. **

WR Mike Williams: Williams is seeing the targets, but Hasselbeck’s throwing is off. Bench him this week. **

WR Deon Butler: I’m not a fan of the matchup, although Butler should see four to five receptions. **

WR Golden Tate: Tate isn’t involved with the Seattle offense enough to even roster. *

TE Jon Carlson: Carlson isn’t seeing the receptions to warrant a start, but he’ll be utilized more this Sunday. ***

Seattle Defense: No thanks to this defense against the high-scoring Giants. **


Arizona Cardinals @ Minnesota Vikings

QB Derek Anderson: Anderson will most likely get the start, but he needs to be sat regardless. *

QB Max Hall: Even if Hall plays, he’s a terrible option any week. *

RB Beanie Wells: This isn’t a great matchup for Wells. While he’s getting the carries, the Cards generally play from behind. **

RB Tim Hightower: He had two touches in Week 8, and I doubt he’ll see any more than six or seven in a game going forward. **

WR Larry Fitzgerald: Fitzgerald is hard to shy away from as he still finds ways to produce somehow. It’s just not what you want to see each week.  ***

WR Steve Breaston: Breaston had a very nice comeback game in Week 8. But I’d sit him this week even against a struggling secondary. **

WR Andre Roberts: Roberts’ value is very limited with Breaston back.

TE Ben Patrick-:Just say no to Patrick. *

Arizona Defense: You shouldn’t even have them on your roster.  *

QB Brett Favre: Favre just can’t get the ball into the end zone or limit turnovers. The matchup is good, but losing Moss sure doesn’t help. ***

QB Tarvaris Jackson: If Favre doesn’t play for some reason, Jackson may not be a bad start against this weak defense.

RB Adrian Peterson: You shouldn’t sit AP any week. *****

WR Percy Harvin: Harvin may miss some practice, but he should be ready for the game and should be started weekly. ****

WR Bernard Berrian: Berrian may see a few more targets, but he didn’t do anything even before Randy Moss was in Minny. *

WR Greg Camarillo: He didn’t get targeted once in Week 7 or 8. Keep him benched. *

TE Visanthe Shiancoe: Shiancoe saw a few more receptions, but isn’t a reliable TE option until Minnesota can throw the ball successfully. **

Minnesota Defense: This is a great matchup for Minnesota, despite their struggling secondary. ****


Kansas City Chiefs @ Oakland Raiders

QB Matt Cassel: He hasn’t thrown an interception since Week 3, but his struggles to surpass 200 yards and more than one touchdown a week make him a weak QB2 option. **

RB Jamaal Charles: There’s no reason not to keep plugging Charles in. He just needs to find the end zone more. ****

RB Thomas Jones: Jones still is producing and should find the end zone this week. ****

WR Dwayne Bowe: Bowe only had 16 yards, but he had a touchdown. I expect him to end his touchdown streak this week. ***

WR Dexter McCluster: McCluster should be back for Week 9, but he won’t make an impact in this game. **

TE Tony Moeaki: Moeaki has been good for a few receptions and making plays downfield. He’s a sleeper TE. ***

Kansas City Defense: With Oakland scoring as they are, I don’t expect KC to shut them down enough for a solid fantasy start. **

QB Bruce Gradkowski: The Raiders will likely let Gradkowski get back to 100 percent sitting this week and for the bye. *

QB Jason Campbell: Campbell is playing well right now, but this matchup isn’t as favorable. **

RB Darren McFadden: McFadden should be in weekly going forward. ****

RB Michael Bush: Bush is still seeing touches and isn’t a bad Flex play. ***

WR Darrius Heyward-Bey: Holy cow, he made some plays. One game isn’t enough to make him roster-worthy, still. **

WR Louis Murphy: Murphy will be out Week 9 and back Week 11. *

WR Jacoby Ford: Ford will work the slot a bit. Value is extremely limited. *

TE Zach Miller: Miller should be started every week. He’s that good. *****

Oakland Defense: Their defense has been playing well. They are a solid sleeper start for Week 9. ***


Indianapolis Colts @ Philadelphia Eagles

QB Peyton Manning: Manning is a guy you start every week.  *****

RB Joseph Addai: It’s unlikely that Addai plays again, but if he does, you should still bench him as he won’t be close to 100 percent. *

RB Donald Brown: Brown still isn’t 100 percent and he isn’t producing. *

RB Mike Hart: Hart may have to sit this week as well after injuring his ankle in the fourth quarter. We’ll keep you posted. *

RB Javarris James: He’s not a sexy pickup, as he shouldn’t be. But he could be the man starting on Sunday. **

WR Reggie Wayne: Wayne is one of the most reliable receivers. Keep him in the lineup. ****

WR Pierre Garcon: Garcon should be started every week when healthy. ****

WR Blair White: White did not get targeted once in Monday night’s matchup. Proceed with caution. *

WR Anthony Gonzalez: Gonzo fared reasonably well. He’s still not on the same page as Manning, but he should still see receptions. ***

TE Jacob Tamme: Tamme did register a touchdown and had 64 yards. He looks to be a solid contributor in Peyton’s offense. ***

Indianapolis Defense: The Colts defense is still just mediocre. I don’t care for the matchup this week. **

Key Note: Dallas Clark is out for the season with a wrist injury. Austin Collie is out for at least three weeks with a hand surgery.

QB Michael Vick: Vick started practicing and should be the starter for Sunday’s matchup against the Colts. If he indeed does start, get him back in. ****

QB Kevin Kolb: If Vick starts, obviously bench Kolb. But if he doesn’t, Kolb has a solid matchup. ***

RB LeSean McCoy: Shady McCoy needs to stay in your lineup. ****

WR DeSean Jackson: We’ll keep you up-to date-with Jackson, as he could play this week. If he does, get him back in the lineup. ****

WR Jeremy Maclin: Maclin should be in your lineup barring injury. He’s making plays in the short field, and down the field. ****

WR Jason Avant: If Jackson sits, Avant makes for a solid Flex play. Otherwise, sit him. ***

TE Brent Celek: Celek has been quite disappointing. If Vick comes back, it may be time to sit him as Indy hasn’t given much up to tight ends. **

Philadelphia Defense: This will probably be a high-scoring matchup. I’d sit Philly’s defense this week. **


Dallas Cowboys @ Green Bay Packers

QB Jon Kitna: Kitna threw four interceptions in Week 8, but three were on the receivers. This matchup isn’t the greatest, however. **

RB Felix Jones: Jones bruised his forearm, but should still play. I’m not liking the Cowboys RBs at all right now, however. **

RB Marion Barber: Barber is more of a red zone guy, but you can’t rely on the ‘Boys runners. **

WR Miles Austin: Austin will continue to produce even with Kitna. *****

WR Dez Bryant: Surprisingly enough, I’m starting to warm up to Bryant and Kitna, plus he offers a nice return game. ****

WR Roy E. Williams: Williams will remain invisible with Kitna at QB. **

TE Jason Witten: Get Witten in the lineup as Kitna will throw to him quite a bit. ****

Dallas Defense: I won’t trust this defense after they allowed Garrard to put up five touchdowns on them. **

QB Aaron Rodgers: Rodgers had a bad Week 8, but he should bounce back nicely here.  *****

RB Brandon Jackson: Jackson isn’t a bad Flex RB, but that’s about it. ***

RB John Kuhn: Kuhn isn’t seeing the carries to warrant a start. *

WR Greg Jennings: Jennings should continue to produce. ****

WR Donald Driver: Driver will be out for Week 9. Bench him. *

WR James Jones: Jones will have to fill in for Driver, who’s sitting against the Cowboys. ***

TE Andrew Quarless: Quarless didn’t catch one pass in Week 9 and injured his shoulder. Bench him. *

Green Bay Defense: The Cowboys could surprise them, but Green Bay isn’t a bad start, although risky. ****

Key Note: Jermichael Finley is out for the season with a torn meniscus. Ryan Grant is done for the season, as are Justin Harrell, Nick Barnett and Morgan Burnett.

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cincinnati Bengals

QB Ben Roethlisberger: Keep Ben in against a struggling Cincy secondary. ****

RB Rashard Mendenhall: Mendenhall keeps making plays. I like the matchup. ****

RB Mewelde Moore: Moore will spell Mendenhall here and there, but his value is very limited. *

WR Hines Ward: Get Ward in the lineup as Ben will still find him. ****

WR Mike Wallace: Wallace keeps scoring, and averaged over 25 yards a catch. Get him in. ****

TE Heath Miller: I like Miller a lot more than I did at the beginning of the year. ***

Pittsburgh Defense: Pittsburgh’s defense should be started every week. They make plays regardless. *****

QB Carson Palmer: Palmer is a risky play each week, and this matchup does not bode well for the struggling QB . **

RB Cedric Benson: I expect Benson to be very limited in his production against the Pittsburgh defense. **

RB Bernard Scott: Let’s keep Scott on the bench until he gets more involved with the offense, or at least gets in the red zone. *

WR Chad Ochocinco: Ochocinco may not be a bad play this week, but T.O. is better.  ***

WR Terrell Owens: Keep plugging Owens in. He’s finding ways to make plays. ****

WR Jordan Shipley: Shipley only has value in very deep PPR leagues. *

TE Jermaine Gresham: Gresham is still going to see quite a few targets each game. ***

Cincinnati Defense: Bench this defense until the secondary can stop somebody. *


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