Latest in Sports

December 14, 2007


1. Randy Moss (NE) – He was able to bounce back in week 14 after 2 modest outings in a row by his standards. Moss hauled in 7 catches for 135 yards and 2 TD’s. You should consider Moss a lock against the Jets in week 15. In their first meeting this season, he caught 9 passes for 183 yards and a TD.
2. Terrell Owens (DAL) – After a long string of monster performances, T.O. apparently decided to take week 14 off. He only had 3 catches for 21 yards against a weak Detroit secondary. Expect Owens to bounce back in a big way against his former team, the Philadelphia Eagles. In a week 9 meeting with the Eagles, Owens pulled in 10 passes for 174 yards and a score.
3. Marques Colston (NO) – He has been money throughout much of the season, and he was money on Monday night, pulling in 9 passes for 92 yards and 2 TD’s. This week, Colston will face a Cardinals secondary that has been getting torched in recent weeks, and ranks 24th in the NFL. He should be money in week 15 and remains a must start.
4. Braylon Edwards (CLE) – He has now found pay dirt in his last 3 games, and has at least 1 TD in 6 of his last 8. Edwards is a stud fantasy WR, and should be started accordingly against the 28th ranked pass defense of the Buffalo Bills in week 15.
5. Larry Fitzgerald (ARI) – Despite a nagging groin injury, Fitzgerald managed to have a very solid week 14, catching 6 passes for 79 yards and a TD. The groin injury should be on the mend and less of an issue in week 15. Expect Fitzgerald to do big things against the 29th ranked pass defense of the Saints. Only 3 NFL defenses have allowed more passing TD’s. (Check injury report: groin)
6. Greg Jennings (GB) – He now has 11 TD’s in 11 starts this season, including 5 TD’s in his last 4 games. Those kind of numbers are impossible to argue against, and with a nice match up against St. Louis this week, Jennings is a must start.
7. Reggie Wayne (IND) – Wayne was able to score his 9th TD of the season in what was an otherwise lackluster week14 performance. He will again have his work cut out for him against a very solid 5th ranked Oakland pass defense. Wayne has found the end zone in his last 3 games, and should be great again in week 15 in spite of the difficult match up.
8. T.J. Houshmandzadeh (CIN) – There is no question that he has cooled off in recent weeks, but he is still fairly productive, and remains a must start. After a 3 week layoff, Houshmandzadeh has a good chance to return to the end zone against a very average 49er secondary. He leads the NFL this season with 96 receptions on the season.
9. Torry Holt (STL) – This guy is a star even with a 3rd string QB, and even better, he will likely have Marc Bulger back at QB this week. He will face a very average Green Bay pass defense, and even difficult match ups rarely faze the seasoned veteran. Holt is a very solid start for week 15.
10. Wes Welker (NE) – He can be hit or miss, but more often than not, he comes up big. Welker will face an improved, yet vulnerable, Jets pass defense in week 15. In a week 1 game against them, Welker pulled in 6 passes for 61 yards and a TD. A repeat performance or better is highly probable.
11. Joey Galloway (TB) – He will face an Atlanta secondary that was torched last week by New Orleans. Also, with all that has happened to the Falcons this past week, they will likely be vulnerable and down. In addition, Galloway will have starting QB Jeff Garcia back in the line up. Galloway should be in line for a great game.
12. Chad Johnson (CIN) – After a monster week 12, and a solid week 13, Johnson fell back into average mode with a 2 catch 60 yard performance last week. There is no guarantee that Ocho Cinco will find that week 12 magic this week, but with his talent, he could explode any week. He will face a very average 49er pass defense, and could be a difference maker for you in a playoff run.
13. Plaxico Burress (NYG) – While Burress has been up and down over the last few weeks, a big week 14 performance should be encouraging to fantasy owners. Hopefully his ankle is on the mend, and Burress can get back on track on a consistent basis once again. This week he will face the 23rd ranked pass defense of the Redskins. In a week 3 meeting with Washington, he had 5 catches for 86 yards and a TD. There is a slight risk in starting him this week, but last week was promising, and you probably can not afford to bench him.
14. Bobby Engram (SEA) – He does not put up super flashy numbers, but his consistency is unmatched by any fantasy WR. He has scored a TD in each of his last 2 games, and should continue to be a favorite red zone target for Matt Hasselbeck. In week 15, Engram will match up against a Carolina pass defense that has been decent for the most part, but they were flat out embarrassed last week against Jacksonville. Engram should put together another solid effort.
15. Hines Ward (PIT) – He was not exactly stellar last week with a 5 catch 39 yard performance against the Patriots, but Ward should bounce back this week against Jacksonville’s 27th ranked pass defense.
16. Deion Branch (SEA) – You probably can not expect a monster game from Branch this week, but he should definitely make an impact. He is targeted often, and is always a threat to find the end zone. The Carolina pass defense ranks 12th in the NFL, but they were humiliated by Jacksonville last week. Branch is a good start.
17. Lee Evans (BUF) – He is certainly risky any week, but he seems to have solid chemistry with QB Trent Edwards, and his big play ability bodes well for him against the weak secondary of the Browns. Evans could have a monster week 15, but a bust is not out of the question either. We like his chances, especially when you consider that Cleveland has allowed a league leading 27 TD’s through the air.
18. Bernard Berrian (CHI) – There are some question marks with Berrian this week, such as how will he react to Kyle Orton at QB?, but Berrian is playing well, and a match up against Minnesota’s NFL worst pass defense looks promising. In week 6, he pulled in 5 passes for 78 yards and a TD against the Vikings. He should make for a solid starting option.
19. Shaun McDonald (DET) – With Roy Williams out, it appears that McDonald is the new go to go in the Detroit passing game. He had 8 catches for 96 yards last week, and should be targeted early and often against a talented, but shaky, San Diego pass defense. McDonald could be this week’s big sleeper.
20. Roddy White (ATL) – He has been on fire in recent weeks with 19 catches for 325 yards and 3 TD’s in his last 3 games. He appears to have solid chemistry with new QB Chris Redman, and White should continue to be Redman’s go to target. On the negative side, White has never really played well against Tampa, and only had 4 catches for 28 yards against them in week 11. In addition, it is hard to say what effect the resignation of head coach Booby Petrino will have on White, and the Falcons offense. White should be considered risky, but very capable in week 15. (Check injury report: knee)
21. Donald Driver (GB) – While Greg Jennings has taken over the star role in the Packers passing attack, Driver remains a dangerous fantasy option any week. Driver is not making big plays lately, but he is still targeted more often than Jennings, and is capable of breaking out of his TD slump any week. He has a great shot against a very shaky St. Louis pass defense in week 15.
22. Steve Smith (CAR) – He continues to be targeted often, but has not been the explosive WR we are all accustomed to seeing. We know he has the ability to produce a monster game, but until he does so, it is hard to expect a great deal from him. He will face a vulnerable Seahawks pass defense in week 15.
23. Laveranues Coles (NYJ) – He continues to push through a painful ankle sprain and under the circumstances has played fairly well. He faces a tough New England pass defense this week, but Coles did have 7 catches for 59 yards and 2 TD’s against them in week 1. With the nagging ankle, it is probably a stretch to expect similar numbers this time around, but he should play through the pain, and solid numbers are very possible. (Check injury report: ankle)
24. Santonio Holmes (PIT) – Holmes’ ankle was obviously still an issue in week 14 as he was held to a limited number of reps. While the ankle should be better this week, it will probably not be 100%. It is unclear if he will again be limited, but to air on the side of caution, you should probably lessen expectations if you start him.
25. Anquan Boldin (ARI) – If Boldin is healthy enough to play and gets a full compliment of reps, he could be huge this week against a very soft Saints secondary. Unfortunately, the prospects of him playing, and playing a lot in week 15, appear slim at best. Keep tabs on his status heading into Sunday; Boldin could still have some value even in a limited role. (Check injury report: toe)
26. Derrick Mason (BAL) – He had an off week 14, but Mason should bounce back nicely against Miami. The Dolphins rank an impressive 3rd in the NFL against the pass, but they have been shaky as of late, and have allowed 21 passing TD’s on the season. You should be safe with Mason in your starting line up for week 15, especially in PPR leagues.
27. Nate Burleson (SEA) – No Seattle WR has benefited more than Burleson from the absence of the injured D.J. Hackett. In his last 2 games Burleson has 9 catches for 121 yards and 2 TD’s. He has become a favorite red zone target for Matt Hasselbeck, and also adds value as a return specialist. He can be risky, considering that he is the #3 WR for Seattle, and does not get the number of looks that Engram and Branch get.
28. Chris Chambers (SD) – He is a big play threat any week, but Chambers needs to be more involved in the Chargers game plan to make a substantial impact for fantasy owners. He has a great match up against the Lions 31st ranked pass defense, but they must get him the ball for him to take advantage of it. In addition, Detroit has allowed 26 passing TD’s this season. Only the Cleveland Browns have allowed more.
29. Calvin Johnson (DET) – Johnson is still considered a risky option due to his inconsistency, but with Roy Williams out, Johnson is seeing his number of looks increase. He is a super talent, and as his role in the Detroit offense increases, so should his numbers. Under the current circumstances, Johnson is capable of a monster game, but with the Lions unpredictable game plans of late, who knows when?
30. Jerricho Cotchery (NYJ) – Just as everyone thought he was finished for the year after having surgery on his finger, Cotchery came out of nowhere last week, posting one of his better games of the season with 6 catches for 119 yards. You should see him back on the field again this week, but do not expect a repeat performance against a tough Patriots secondary. Cotchery had 6 catches for 57 yards in a week 1 meeting with New England. (Check injury report: finger)
31. Isaac Bruce (STL) – We realize that Bruce was completely shut out last week, but for starters, he never plays well outdoors, and secondly, Bruce was at the mercy of a 3rd string QB. The good news is that he should have starting QB Marc Bulger back this week, and he will be back in the comfort of the Edward Jones Dome where he typically plays well. Bruce is not destined for a monster game against the Packers this week, but he should bounce back nicely from a humiliating week 14 shut out.
32. Reggie Williams (JAX) – He has now scored a TD in 4 of his last 6 games, and his role in the Jaguar offense has increased overall in the last 2 weeks. Williams will be in for a big test against the Steelers 2nd ranked pass defense this week, but he should have ample opportunity to continue his hot streak as Jacksonville’s top target.
33. Dwayne Bowe (KC) – Bowe has proven to be a capable fantasy WR, but he is losing value in a sputtering Chiefs offense. In week 15, he will face a tough Tennessee pass defense that ranks 8th in the NFL. The way things are going for Bowe and the Chiefs offense, you should keep expectations on the moderate side, and hope for a big play or two.
34. Patrick Crayton (DAL) – He continues to be a high risk-high reward fantasy option. He can go from huge numbers to non existent any given week with no reasonable explanation. Crayton is capable, but should be considered a dangerous start against an Eagles pass defense that completely shut him down back in week 9.
35. Anthony Gonzalez (IND) – He has come up huge in 2 of his last 3 games, but it is that game in between that should be of concern. Gonzalez has proven that he can be an explosive fantasy WR, but he has not done it enough to be considered reliable. He is a hit or miss option this week against Oakland. He could make your week, but he is also capable of killing it.
36. Santana Moss (WAS) – He is still not where he should be at this point in the season, but Moss could come to life with Todd Collins under center. He is a bit of a long shot, but he typically plays well against the Giants, and we like his chances.
37. Kevin Curtis (PHI) – While he is capable of coming up big any week, Curtis is equally capable of doing little. The Dallas secondary can be shaky at times, so he could bust loose with a huge game, but a modest effort is more likely. He had 5 catches for 51 yards against the Cowboys in week 9.
38. Jabar Gaffney (NE) – He has been a pleasant surprise in recent weeks, and has a TD in each of his last 3 games. Gaffney is definitely moving up Tom Brady’s favorites list, but he is still the #4 WR for the Patriots, and could disappear any week. He is hot, but he is also a very risky week 15 start.
39. Arnaz Battle (SF) – He continues to be the lone bright spot in an otherwise dismal 49er passing attack. Battle has now scored a TD in his last 3 games, but remains a risk with low reception and yardage totals. The match up bodes well for him to continue his TD streak, as the Bengals have allowed 24 passing TD’s this season, but it is difficult to find the end zone every week, and without that, he has little value.
40. Justin Gage (TEN) – He kind of fell off the Vince Young radar last week, but he should be back this week. Gage is a week 15 long shot, but he could provide solid numbers against a struggling KC defense.
41. Bryant Johnson (ARI) – If Anquan Boldin misses his second straight game, Johnson could have some real value this week against a bad New Orleans secondary. Otherwise, Johnson has little value. Check on Boldin’s status before putting Johnson on your starting roster this week.
42. Sidney Rice (MIN) – Rice cooled off a bit last week, but he has proven that he has the tools necessary to be a valuable fantasy WR any given week. He has a favorable match up against the Bears 26th ranked pass defense, but needs to show more consistency to be considered a reliable fantasy starter.
43. Jerry Porter (OAK) – He is not very dependable, and faces a tough match up against Indy this week, but he has found pay dirt for 2 straight weeks, and could be worth a shot.
44. Chris Henry (CIN) – He has not done much lately, but he is still a potentially dangerous fantasy option. A risky, but capable starting option.
45. Reggie Brown (PHI) – Brown has had the occasional nice game, but he is fairly inconsistent, and rarely puts up more than decent numbers. He will get you some points this week against Dallas, but it probably won’t be enough to seriously consider him beyond a fill in role.
46. Donte Stallworth (NE) – He has not completely fallen out of favor, but his numbers appear to be decreasing on a weekly basis, and 1 catch last week does not bode well for the rest of the season. Stallworth seems to be the forgotten man in Patriots offense, and Jabar Gaffney seems to have stepped into his role. He is capable of bouncing back against the Jets this week, but don’t bet on it.
47. Mike Furrey (DET) – He had a disappointing 2 catches for 15 yards last week. Expect him to play a bigger role and rebound this week against San Diego. A great effort is very possible, but you should keep expectations on the modest side.
48. David Patten (NO) – After falling off the fantasy radar completely for a few weeks, Patten reemerged in a big way in week 14 with 9 catches for 122 yards and 1 TD. He has a great match up against a struggling Cardinals pass defense in week 15, but is not a very dependable starting option.
49. Josh Reed (BUF) – While you should only consider Reed if you are in a tight spot, week 15 could be his time to shine. Reed has seen his role in the passing game increase over the last few weeks, and while he has not scored a TD this season, a match up against Cleveland could easily change that. The Browns have allowed 27 passing TD’s, more than any other team in the NFL. He may be worth a shot if you are in desperate need of a WR for the playoff run.
50. Mark Clayton (BAL) –He is coming off a nice 7 catch 90 yard effort last week. Clayton is a hit or miss prospect, but he is probably not worth the risk.

No comments: