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Formula:

Rating = Amount of Talent (Individual + Team Support) + Opportunity

Tier I

Larry Fitzgerald 20 (10+10) – I have been harping on this for a few weeks. I discussed the situation extensively in Game Day Companion on Sunday. Get Larry Fitzgerald. Period.

Steven Jackson 18 (9+9) – Can somebody get this guy a touchdown, please? Look the Rams are horrible but Steven Jackson is easily having the best fantasy season in history without getting in the end zone. He will score eventually.

Calvin Johnson 18 (9+9) – This guy is a warrior. I think that him, Andre Johnson, and Larry Fitzgerald should form some crime fighting super hero group. He is going to come back from this injury and be effective. If you have to take chances, take chances on guys with determination and a strong work ethic.

Brandon Jacobs 16 (8+8) – Still not getting in the end zone. Everyone is going from worshiping the Giants to shunning them because they’ve lost two weeks in a row. Sometimes that stuff has a residual effect on players’ fantasy value. In non-PPR especially I’d give him a good look.

Steve Smith (Carolina) 16 (8+8) – I am not the biggest Steve Smith fan in the world. I busted on him a lot early on in the year, saying he was going to be a tremendous bust. Well, he has been so now the inevitable result is he’s become a Sleeper. He is coming off his first solid performance of the season on Sunday. Check with his owner to see if you can steal him; I wouldn’t be willing to pay anything close to his preseason ADP.

Greg Jennings 16 (9+7) – Similar to Steve Smith. I like him as a talent but just don’t see how Rodgers will have enough time to throw him the football. Also the Packers have really difficult playoff matchups so like Smith be cognizant of what you pay for him.

Tier II

Shonn Greene 15 (9+6) – I have had him in several episodes of “Sleeper Math” as Tier III Sleeper. The season (perhaps career) ending injury to Leon Washington obviously changes all that. Expect Greene to get a lot of touches from here on out (I’d expect 15 per week). If you picked him up off waivers you are going to love him as a keeper for next year as Thomas Jones is a free agent.

Jericho Cotchery 15 (8+7) – The “Braylon Edwards Effect” is on like Donkey Kong. The Jets are taking their time and being patient with Cotchery. He should be back this week and I like his chances of performing at a high level if he does.

Marshawn Lynch 15 (8+7) – “Runnin’ for money!!!!!!” Once Fred Jackson was handed over kick return duties it was evident that the Bills were going to ride Lynch from here on out. He has ran extremely well since he’s come back from the suspension and despite the tragedy that is the Bills O-Line I expect him to be productive. It is going to be scary the numbers this guy will put up next season if he is behind a quality offensive line.

Beanie Wells 15 (9+6) – He is starting to get a vast majority of the straightforward carries in Arizona. The one issue I have with him is that Hightower’s still getting the goal line work. As the season goes on there’s always the chance that Beanie could take that but Arizona seems content with what they have going on now.

Correll Buckhalter 15 (8+7) – Came back earlier than expected from injury and looked very, very good out there running the football. This guy isn’t going to rack you up any 25 point performances but he is going to be a great flex option for you; the deeper the league the better he’ll be relative to acquisition cost.

Eli Manning 15 (7+8) – Eli’s had two tough games in a row and doesn’t have the best schedule ahead. But his receivers are infinitely better than we thought they’d be and he has tons of support from the running game and offensive line. In 2 Quarterback Leagues he could be an especially cagey pickup.

Tier III

Jamaal Charles 14 (8+6) – Charles looked really good when he touched the football again on Sunday. Larry Johnson has been subpar this season and was less than impressive again. Then after the game he “Tweeted” about how much of a Nancy Pants he thinks his coach is, calling him out on playing golf instead of football. I wouldn’t be surprised to see some disciplinary action come out of this; that’s what Haley’d do if he had any self-respect. Either way we should start to see a bigger role for Charles develop.

Jerome Harrison 14 (8+6) – Here’s another Sleeper Math veteran.  We saw what he was able to do earlier in the season when Lewis was injured. Hopefully he gets hurt again and Harrison can get the opportunity to start that he deserves.

Malcolm Floyd 14 (8+6) – Norv Turner might’ve actually figured out that Chris Chambers is hot garbage. Floyd has seen his role in the offense expanded over the course of the season. He is a very tall receiver with excellent hands who has taken advantage of every opportunity presented to him. In general that leads to getting more opportunities.

Willie Parker 14 (7+7) – He has obviously sunk pretty low to be down here in Tier III with the other backups.

Alex Smith 13 (6+7) – I’m not going to get all crazy over what he did on Sunday but it looks like he’s going to get another chance at being the starter in San Francisco. Sometimes guys just need to fail and take some time to regroup. There’s a possibility that’s what’s happening with him.

You can follow me on twitter: Razzball_Drew

From Around The Web

  1. John says:
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    Hey i was wondering what do you think the value of Mendenhall would be? Currently i dont need him and am hurting bad at WR and TE and trying to trade him for maybe johnson or jennings?

  2. herschel says:
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    12 team ppr league, i was offered the following trade:

    my miles austin and ricky williams for his santonio holmes and brandon jacobs.

    thoughts? thanks in advance.

  3. Matt B says:
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    10 team PPR, would you make any changes to round out the bench? It may be time to cut Fast Freddie.

    To pick up?
    RB: B Wells, M Bell, S Greene, M Bush
    WR: D Avery, M wallace, J Maclin, D Henderson
    —-
    To drop?
    RB J Harrison, F Jackson
    WR: P Garcon, P Harvin

  4. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @John: Which Johnson? Might target Brandon Marshall or Jennings.

    @herschel: Tit for tat. I’d lean toward Holmes and Jacobs, just a little. Austin has been great but Pittsburgh is throwing like crazy and Holmes has a longer track record. Jacobs should get 14-18 carries a game and goal line duty, while Ricky may get 8-14 carries a game and split goal line duties.

    @Matt B: I might drop Jackson for Shonn Greene, and Garcon for Avery or Maclin (non-PPR I’d say Wallace). It’s all pretty close in value though, so it’s just picking based on potential value.

  5. dandle lion says:
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    I’m hoping to get some waiver wire help with the #3 in a 12 team PPR (.05)

    I think Greene is a no brainer (I have Tom Jones).

    But if I fail…is Jamal Charles worth a long look? LJ has to be done, right?

    Outside of Charles and Greene I don’t think anyone is worth a high pick. Bell, Wells, Bush, et al. are all scooped up.

  6. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @dandle lion: Yeah, Charles is worth a shot. I can’t put my finger on it, but I think LJ has a slightly longer leash than people realize, but even I think he’s pushing it now…they can’t keep throwing his coach-slamming, 2 yards a carry ass out there.

  7. dandle lion says:
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    Scary, but I think you’re right.

    Thanks.

  8. DonCoburleone says:
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    Oh wise Razzballer, I’m in a 14-team PPR league and just pulled a miracle out of my azz to stay alive. Would you do a straight swap of Marion Barber (i’m giving up) for Jericho Cotchery (i’m getting). My other running Backs are Slaton, Bradshaw, Beanie Wells and I just added McCoy.

  9. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @DonCoburleone: Are you that badly in need of a WR? I know it’s PPR, but if I’m giving up Barber, I’d want someone with fewer questions marks than Cotchery. I like Cotchery, but I don’t think you are buying low enough.

  10. DonCoburleone says:
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    Oh and one trade I have been sitting on and debating in my other league is I get Steven Jackson and Hines Ward for Brandon Marshall and Marshawn Lynch? I don’t want to lose Marshall or Lynch but I absolutely love Steven Jackson. I’m not big on Hines Ward but the numbers he has put up this year are too good to ignore.

  11. DonCoburleone says:
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    Okay thats what I figured on Cotchery. I just hate the 3 option RB system Dallas has going. What about Marion Barber for Greg Jennings? Is that more in the ballpark of where you put Barbers value right now?

  12. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @DonCoburleone: Yeah, I think that’s fair. Ward will have excellent numbers, not top tier I think but close to it….the Steelers just have to throw a ton against any decent defense. And that’s a great upgrade from Lynch to S-Jax.

  13. Marvin N. says:
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    Hey Razzballers…question:

    Winslow’s on bye for me (like it really even matters) and i’m thinking of picking up Havner, who’s replacing Finley in the GB lineup as TE. The logical choice like Donald Lee but last game, Havner seemed to get the better touches and they primarily like to use Lee to block out there in GB. What do y’all think?

    Thanks,

    M

  14. stumanji says:
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    My RBs: LT, Pierre Thomas, Mendenhall, Donald Brown
    My WRs: Welker, Housh, Jennings, Berrian, A Gonzo

    Trying to work out a deal for Megatron. Can I afford to give up a combo of (Housh or Jennings) and (Thomas or Mendy)?

    Start 2 RB, 2 WR, and 1 Flex.

  15. stumanji says:
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    @Marvin N.: Is Fred Davis available? He replaced Cooley (broken ankle) last night and looked pretty solid.

  16. stumanji says:
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    LT for Kevin Smith & Cotchery. Which side do you like? I know everyone is down on LT but I’m encouraged after he got 18 and 23 carries the last two weeks.

  17. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @Marvin N.: What provider is your league in? Yahoo doesn’t even have Havner listed yet. I’d still lean towards Lee for now, he was semi-productive in previous years. If your TE position is a crapshoot anyway, then taking a shot on Havner might be worth it (assuming you can actually pick him up).

    @stumanji: In terms of value, I think it’s okay (I sent Matt Ryan, Braylon Edwards, and Darren McFadden for Calvin Johnson in my league), but it sure leaves you thin. Have you tried something like Brown + Housh or PT + Berrian?

  18. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @stumanji: Redskins have a bye so Davis won’t help him next week.

    @stumanji: Smith + Cotchery. I think LT will continue to get carries (they aren’t prepared to give Sproles 20 carries a game), it’s just whether or not he’ll ever give you more than 60-70 yards a game. Smith should give you most of LT’s value and Cotchery is a bonus.

  19. Marvin N. says:
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    @mgeoffriau: thanks for the feedback. i’m on myfantasyleague and i was able to pick up havner last night. his two catches for 60yds and TD against the browns should, hopefully, be what he does against the vikes…TE’s torch them…

  20. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @Marvin N.: Nice…I’m going to keep an eye on when Yahoo adds him. Could be a nice pickup if Finley can’t come back in a couple weeks as planned.

  21. stumanji says:
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    @mgeoffriau: Megatron owner said Jennings + a RB who would play for his team would get the deal done, which means PT or Mendy.

    His current RBs are Slaton, Beanie, Hightower, Felix Jones. I don’t think Brown is necessarily an upgrade over either Cards RB, and Berrian is pretty useless and kind of hurt right now.

    If he said no to Brown: Megatron+Beanie for Jennings+PT/Mendy?

  22. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @stumanji: Yeah, unless he gets desperate he’ll probably shoot down Brown. I’d be inclined to send PT over Mendenhall (think it’s more likely for Mike Bell to steal carries than FWP). If you can get Beanie back in return that would even up the deal to me.

  23. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @stumanji: Also, I know you said he named Jennings, but if you can substitute Housh for Jennings I’d do that. I know Jennings is underproducing but I don’t trust that SEA offense.

  24. Jim Parkey says:
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    QB question. I need a bye week QB and pickings are slim (Edwards was my backup). I’m trying for Alex Smith, but if I can’t get him on waivers, do I go with: 1) M. Stafford, 2) Bulger, 3) Sanchez, 4) Fitzpatrick, 5) K. Collins or …. perhaps Chad Henne or D. Anderson?

    Stafford would be my second choice, but I’m worried he may not start this week.

    I’m in dire straights, man. Tx.

  25. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    Just saw news that Portis sprained his ankle. Portis owners or those looking for long-shot RB starters should pick up Betts. More likely, Portis will just run on the sprained ankle and suck for 20 carries a game any way.

    @Jim Parkey: Bulger @ DET, then Fitzpatrick. I’d hold off on Stafford until we see if he’s healthy. Avoid Henne, I know he torched NYJ last time but I wouldn’t bet on a repeat.

  26. DonCoburleone says:
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    Jim Parkey I say Bulger. The Lions are still a joke defensively. I mean Jason Campbell threw for 341 w/ 2 TD’s barely a month ago against them. If Campbell can do that against Detroit, Bulger could too…

  27. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    The Chiefs have told LJ to stay away from practice and other team activities until it reviews the Twitter/slur incident. Grab Charles if he’s available in your league.

  28. denzik says:
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    @mgeoffriau: charles or maroney,long term

  29. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @denzik: Right now, I’d say Maroney. He’s got a job and Charles doesn’t. That said, the Patriots often use a committee approach, so as their other RB’s get healthy he may lose carries. If the Chiefs dump LJ, the job is all Charles’.

  30. stumanji says:
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    @mgeoffriau: I don’t think he’d go for Housh. Jennings+PT for Calvin+Beanie? The latter half def has more upside; if I was desperate to shake things up I’d do that but if Beanie doesn’t take over the #1 I’m really thin at RB.

  31. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @stumanji: It’s fair but not a slam dunk. Keep in mind that Mike Bell has been getting goal line and garbage duty (which could be often with the way the Saints are outscoring people) which limits PT’s value. I think it’s a good risk, but it’s definitely a risk.

  32. stumanji says:
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    @mgeoffriau: I’m very aware of Mike Bell’s presence, which is why I’m even willing to trade PT away. He’s def still more of a feature back than Beanie at this point, though.

    To be honest, my main concern in this whole deal is Calvin’s knee. If he gets reinjured/shut down, I just traded away a (sort of) #1 RB and a (sort of) #1 WR for a timesharing RB on a pass-first team…

  33. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @stumanji: Yup. And your trade partner probably realizes this as well. He’s saying Jennings + a RB improvement gets it done, but if you’re not comfortable with the risk, tell him so and see where it leads.

    I’ve been needing a TE, and the Witten owner in my league picked up Celek and has been trying to trade me Witten for a couple weeks. 2 weeks ago, he was sending offers like Witten + Addai for Marshall + Steven Jackson. I chipped away at him with counteroffers (nothing insulting, just consistently lower than he was offering me), and negotiated down to Witten for Devin Hester straight up last night.

  34. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    Just saw a headline that said CJ did not practice today, for what it’s worth.

  35. Sean says:
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    Who would you guys start at my 2nd RB spot this week?

    1. B. Wells vs. Carolina
    2. J. Fargas @ SD
    3. F. Jones vs. SEA

    Also, is Malcom Floyd worth picking up this week to start at my 3rd WR spot over Justin Gage? Almost all of the hot WR FA names have been picked up already.

  36. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Sean:

    -Wells

    -Yes, definitely worth it. Norv Turner just spoke about how much Chris Chambers has been struggling. Malcolm Floyd could be a big second half Sleeper as he climbs to #2 in the depth chart and benefits from the extra attention Vincent Jackson will soon get.

  37. Sean says:
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    Thanks Drew, is Floyd worth dropping Gage outright for? I just realized I got nobody on my bench I can afford to drop thanks to bye weeks

  38. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Sean: yes, Gage is worthless at this point.

  39. Steve says:
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    Thoughts on trying to flip Westbrook for Boldin? My RBs are AP, Ronnie B and J Jones. WRs are Driver, A-Gonz, Holt, Royal and Crayton.

  40. Falcon says:
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    Drew,

    Tough call for me (shallow league). Who do I sit at RB?

    Kevin Smith, MJD, Ronnie Brown and Darren Sproles

    I am leaning Smith or Sproles, and i get return #’s so leaning on sitting Smith.

    Thoughts?

  41. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @Steve: I like it, but you might have missed your window. But yes, the idea is good — if anyone is willing to give you a near top-tier WR for Westbrook, you have the RB depth to afford it, and could use a good 2nd WR (or first, really…I’d rather have Driver as my 2nd).

  42. vinko says:
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    please rank these players going forward – Charles, Wells, and Bell. 14 team, non ppr. Thanks

  43. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @vinko: Bell, Wells, Charles. All we can do is speculate on the KC situation. If Charles takes over as starter, I’d bump him over Wells. If he’s splitting carries with LJ, I’d rank him about even with Wells.

  44. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @vinko: gotta sit Smith if it’s return yards.

    Wells, Charles, Bell

  45. Christopher says:
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    10-team PPR:

    CJ v. JAX
    Rice v. DEN
    Forte v. CLE
    Wells v. CAR

    I think Rice is a no-braine
    CJ and Wells have good match-ups.
    Forte scares me – I shudder to think I picked him at #4…

    So, who starts this week?

  46. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @Christopher: Wells = Beanie?

    Don’t think you can start him over Forte just yet. Doesn’t matter how bad Carolina’s defense is, Arizona just isn’t going to hand him enough carries to make it worth the risk. I’d sit Wells.

  47. Christopher says:
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    @mgeoffriau: Yeah, that’s Beanie.

    OK, so then it’s down to Rice and whom: CJ or Forte?

    Yeah, that Forte v CLE matchup is enticing, but as I said, Forte scares me!

  48. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @Christopher: Oh, just 2 of the 4? I was thinking RB1, RB2, and Flex. I’d go Rice and CJ. Everyone knows Jacksonsville is a bad pass defense, but TEN isn’t going to throw 40 times on them, and CJ isn’t the kind of RB that’s going to run straight up the middle into the strength of the D.

  49. Nick says:
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    Week 8 Roster…

    QB-Brees
    WR-Fitz, Housh & Breaston
    RB-Jones & Forte
    TE-Shockey
    Flex-McCoy
    BN- Mendenhall (bye), Miller (bye), Roy Williams, Eli Manning, Garcon & Choice
    K-Crosby
    D-Jets

    Do you leave the starting line-up as is? Waivers look like this…Nicks, Wallace, Collie, J Charles, Wells, Greene, Bell, Harrison… I definitely want to replace Breaston and possibly Garcon…so I guess I’m targeting a WR this week. Those waivers are just options, I’m in a 10-team league so the waivers are open

  50. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @Nick: Keep an eye on Reggie Wayne’s status, Garcon and Collie could both have nice days if Reggie sits. I do like Hakeem Nicks potential.

    I’m out for night — but Drew and Doc may be around to answer questions, or you can hit me up on Twitter @mgeoffriau.

  51. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Nick: has your trading deadline passed? You have to get rid of Eli Manning. When are you ever going to start him over Drew Brees? Reason I bring up the trading deadline is hopefully you can move him because otherwise you’d have to drop him. Also, lose Heath Miller. I would drop him for Charles definitely.

  52. Christopher says:
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    @mgeoffriau: Yeah, in the 10-team PPR league, it’s just 2 RB, 3 WR and TE.

    Now, in my 12-team standard, it’s 2 RB, 3 WR and 1 WR/TE. In that league, I have:
    DJax
    Driver
    White
    Megatron
    Cotchery
    Caldwell

    This week, I’m doing DJax, Driver, White and hoping ‘tron can go for my WR/TE slot.

    Was thinking of trying to get Fitzgerald, maybe offering Driver/Ahmad Bradshaw. Longshot, but worth a try.

    Drew, MG, thoughts?

  53. Sean says:
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    Turned this deal down a few weeks ago on this site’s advice…wondering if you guys still feel the same way:

    I give up Portis and get Cotchery.

    1 PPR league, we start 2 RB’s, 3 WR’s, and 1 Flex (which can be any position)

    I already have AP, Benson, Portis, Wells, Fargas, F. Jones, and Forsett at RB and R. White, D. Jackson, S. Moss, M. Wallace, and J. Gage at WR.

  54. denzik says:
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    @Sean: i dont like it for you,wells and jones are part timers as of now,you have good wr`s and cotchery isnt that good

  55. Clodbuster says:
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    Non-PPR 10 team league, would it be wise to trade Randy Moss for Mendenhall and Santonio?

    We use two flex, so that would leave me with DeSean, SidRice, SSmith(Car), Braylon, and Holmes for two slots to play the match-ups and torture me every week.

    My RB’s whom I would likely play four per week would be; Mendenhall, Forte, KSmith, Lynch, and McCoy.

    LT can be included instead of Mendy in the deal but I’m skeptical on him. Nicks can also replace Holmes.

    Sorry for the long post and anyone’s help would be appreciated.

  56. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Sean: I’m all about selling Portis but he is worth more than Cotchery. Honestly I would throw Mike Wallace out there, see what the owner says. Some people would take that deal b/c he’s outplayed Cotchery thus far & is healthy.

  57. Marvin N. says:
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    @stumanji – yeah, i picked up fred davis too but can’t use him this week due to bye. i am gonna hold him for a few weeks though, in spite of the news that cooley is aiming to return in as little as four weeks. hopefully i’ll get some good production from him in that time.

  58. John says:
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    Hey what do you think gates value is right now? his owner is currently hurting really bad with bye weeks this week and i think i could get him for cheap. Im thinking bout using a package involving maybe Royal, Collie, Donald Brown, Greene, or Beanie Wells.

    Right now im thinking bout offering Royal and Brown

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