Week 10 Fantasy Rankings: Christian Ponder and Great Desperation QB Starts

Mike ChiariFeatured ColumnistNovember 11, 2011

CHARLOTTE, NC - OCTOBER 30:  Quarterback Christian Ponder #7 of  the Minnesota Vikings rushes upfield against the Carolina Panthers October 30, 2011 at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

As we enter the home stretch of the fantasy regular season, many teams on the playoff bubble are having to resort to desperate measures. That includes starting players you normally wouldn't give a second look to.

There aren't any byes to contend with this week, but injuries or ineffective play could certainly force your hand. With that said, one position that could feature some good under-the-radar plays in Week 10 is quarterback.

Here are three desperation plays at quarterback that may not put up monster numbers this week, but should certainly do well enough to keep you in contention.

John Beck - Washington Redskins

Washington Redskins quarterback John Beck may be a bit bland, and he isn't often going to torch defenses for big numbers, but he has actually been quite consistent since taking over the starting job in relief of Rex Grossman. This is despite the loss of his top receiver in Santana Moss.

Beck has thrown for over 200 yards in each of this three starts this season, including two games of 250 or more yards. Beck also has at least one touchdown in two of his three games, but he has also thrown at least one interception in each contest.

If Beck is ever going to positively deviate from those numbers, it will be this week against the Miami Dolphins and their 27th-ranked passing defense. Miami's secondary has routinely been torched this season, and while Beck isn't going to make the big play, he can nickel and dime the Dolphins. Beck has enough weapons in the form of Fred Davis, Jabar Gaffney and Roy Helu to do some true damage on Sunday.

Mark Sanchez - New York Jets

Perhaps no player in the NFL is streakier than New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez, but he has actually played quite well as of late and limited mistakes. When you combine that with the fact that he and the Jets are taking on the New England Patriots on their league-worst pass defense, you have a recipe for success.

Sanchez had just 166 yards in his first date with New England this season, but he also had two touchdowns and had his highest quarterback rating of the year. Sanchez has five games with multiple touchdown passes so he is certainly a startable commodity when he has a good matchup, as he does this week.

The Jets have tried to commit to the running game a bit more in recent weeks, but there is no question that passing the ball is the way to beat the Patriots. I think "Sanchize" will come out firing at home under the bright lights on Sunday night.

Christian Ponder - Minnesota Vikings

It is usually tough to trust a rookie quarterback from a fantasy standpoint, although the Carolina Panthers' Cam Newton has bucked that trend a bit this season. Despite the trials and tribulations of rookie signal callers, the Minnesota Vikings' Christian Ponder could be in for a big Week 10 performance.

Only the New England Patriots allow more passing yards per game than the Green Bay Packers who have been ravaged through the air in recent weeks. Although the Packers are undefeated, they most certainly have a deficiency against the pass. Ponder was able to take advantage of that a few weeks ago when he beat the Packers for 219 yards and two touchdowns in his first career start.

Now that Ponder has a couple games under his belt, the team figures to loosen the shackles a bit and allow him to air it out a little more. Ponder has the league's best running back in Adrian Peterson to lean on as well, so he should have some open receivers on Monday night, and I think he'll take full advantage.