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NFL Fantasy Football: Matt Hasselbeck and Top 5 Sleepers for Week 8

Sam McGawContributor IIOctober 27, 2011

NFL Fantasy Football: Matt Hasselbeck and Top 5 Sleepers for Week 8

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    In Week 7, there were a few fantasy sleepers who had huge games for fantasy football owners worldwide. 

    As Week 8 comes upon us, there are some games which bear matchups that can expose teams and give some unexpected players big games.

    The Bears, Falcons, Packers, Jets, Raiders and Buccaneers all have byes this week. With these teams out, a lot of fantasy starters have to be replaced through free agency and backup players.

    While you scramble to replace players such as Aaron Rodgers and Darren McFadden, take a look at these players as potential starters for your team.

    Here are the Week 8 sleepers.

Quarterback: Matt Hasselbeck vs. Colts

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    Excluding last week’s game against Houston, Titans quarterback Matt Hasselbeck has had a decent season. In six games, Hasselbeck has recorded 1,518 yards passing, 10 touchdowns and six interceptions.

    Although he has been productive, Hasselbeck still flies under the radar. This is attributed to the loss of wide receiver Kenny Britt. After losing Britt, Hasselbeck’s fantasy stock fell significantly. While he struggled against the Texans last week, Hasselbeck has a chance to get back on track against the NFL’s 23rd-ranked pass defense, the Indianapolis Colts.

    The Colts defense has allowed the fourth most fantasy points to quarterbacks this season. In last week’s game against the Saints, the Colts were outscored 62-7. Saints quarterback Drew Brees threw for 325 yards and five touchdowns en route to the blowout win.

    The Colts have struggled all season on both sides of the ball. Hasselbeck should get plenty of opportunities to put up big numbers on Sunday against this dismal pass defense.

Running Back: Bernard Scott at Seahawks

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    Cincinnati Bengals running back Cedric Benson will miss this week due to a league-imposed suspension. That means backup Bernard Scott will get his shot this week against the Seattle Seahawks.

    The Seahawks are no pushover when it comes to run defense, ranking 11th in the NFL. What makes Scott an attractive fantasy option, though, is the fact he will be a starting running back this week. That automatically gives him an edge over players that are on bye week or injured. Start Scott as a flex option this week as he should give you some decent numbers.

Wide Receiver: Jabar Gaffney at Bills

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    In a game played in Toronto, Redskins receiver Jabar Gaffney looks to shine against the Buffalo Bills. Gaffney hasn’t been anything special this season, but he has been consistent. In six games played, Gaffney has 23 receptions for 361 yards and a touchdown.

    His stock improves this week due to the recent injury of receiver Santana Moss, who will be out a significant amount of time. With Moss out, it looks like Gaffney will be the No. 1 receiver in Washington. What great timing for him, considering he plays Buffalo this Sunday.

    The Bills currently possess the NFL’s third worst pass defense. Receivers facing the Bills average around 24 fantasy points per game this season. That’s eighth most in the NFL.

    Gaffney is available in most leagues, and should be considered a flex option in the weeks to come.

Tight End: Daniel Fells

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    In his last four games, Broncos tight end Daniel Fells has nine receptions for 149 yards and two touchdowns. That’s not starting fantasy tight end quality, but it is decent for a bye week replacement. With that being said, Fells could have some success this week against the Lions.

    The Detroit Lions boast one of the NFL’s top defenses, but they have struggled when it comes to defending tight ends. Averaging over eight points a game this season, tight ends playing the Lions have had some success.

    Available in most leagues, Fells is a decent bye week replacement and has a chance to score some good fantasy points for your team.

Defense: Bengals D at Seahawks

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    The Bengals defense has played phenomenal this season. Currently ranking second in the NFL in total defense, this underrated squad still goes unnoticed in fantasy leagues throughout.

    Playing the Bengals this week are the Seattle Seahawks. Even though the Seahawks are a dangerous team, opposing defenses have still triumphed over their offense. Defenses playing the Seahawks average the second most fantasy points per week, which is ideal for a stout defense such as the Bengals.

    Feel confident starting the Bengals this week as not only a bye week replacement, but as a potential full-time starter.

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