It is week 4 in the NFL.  Oh how the time flies.  It seems just like yesterday that Anthony Gonzalez was my favorite receiver to draft and I would take him way too early.  And remember that time when LT fell to me in the 2nd round and I thought, yeah, I have to take him; it’s a steal at half the price!  Or there was that guy, what was his name? Oh yeah, Steve Slaton.  I think he was on this high powered sleeper offense that couldn’t miss.  Oh and waiting on a QB and getting Donovan McNabb and thinking, yeah, that’ll work.  Those were the days.

So here are the Sunday games all neatly wrapped in this Friday post.  I hope you enjoy!

12:00 pm Games

Tampa Bay @ Washington

There’s no other direction to go from here but up, so we’ll get this clunker out of the way.  Here are two bad teams that only a super fan could love (think fat men in moo moos with hog noses.  Isn’t that how the swine flu got started?).  The Buccaneers start Josh Johnson.  No, not the Marlins’ pitcher, he’d probably be an upgrade.  Johnson hurts what little value the Bucs offensive players had.  It looks like Derrick Ward will be limited and Cadillac Williams will start, but only use him if you are hurting at RB.  The only other Buc I would use is Kellen Winslow.  He really is the only receiving threat they have.

The Redskins get to face another poor passing D in the Bucs.  Even though they lost to the Lions they absolutely threw all over them. After a huge game last week Santana Moss is poised to lay a big fat egg, but you have to start him at home against such a bad pass D.  You have to start all Redskins named Cooley, Portis and Campbell.  And if Portis has a nice game try your hardest to trade him.

Tennessee @ Jacksonville

The Titans have lost more games than they did all last year.  That is kind of funny, but not ha ha funny.  Jacksonville’s pass defense is pitiful.  I’ve been riding the QB carousel in one league waiting for McNabb to come back and I am throwing Old Man Collins out there this week.  I’m not thrilled with it, but I’m not sweating bullets either.  I expect Nate Washington to have a good game and Justin Gage as well, but I’m liking Washington more.  Chris Johnson is of course an every week starter, and so is LenDale White in heavy TD leagues.  He is getting all of the goalline carries and will get into the endzone.

The Jags’ core players should all be starters this week.  The Titans run D is solid, but you don’t put MJD in a corner.  The Titans pass D is not so solid so you have to run Mike Sims-Walker, Torry Holt and David Garrard out there and give them a shot.

Oakland @ Houston

I wish Darren McFadden could hold onto the ball and JaMarcus Russell had some skill.  I clicked my heels together and I at least got the Houston rush D for my man DMac.  Houston has given up 205 yards rushing per game.  If you have McFadden on your roster and don’t play him here, trade him.  And if he does go off like he should you might think about trading him anyway. He is one of my favorites, but until they resurrect Kenny Stabler or some other good quarterback from Raider lore it will be hard for McFadden to play up to his potential.  I also would give Zach Miller another shot, but McFadden and Miller would be the only Raiders I’d deem worthy of my coveted starting slots.

Houston’s lack of defense has been a boon for their offense.  The Raiders’ defense is good, but they are on the field too much.  Asumogha is elite and can stop Andre Johnson, but he won’t be on him every down.  And the Raiders haven’t looked great on the road.  You’ve got to start all your regular Texan suspects: Schaub, Slaton, AJ, Daniels and Walter.

Cincinnati @ Cleveland

The Bengals have looked like a real team lately.  The Browns on the other hand, have not.  The Bengals should have no problem scoring on their inept defense. Cedric Benson is a must start.  I never thought those words would ever come out of my fingers in that particular order. Carson Palmer has yet to put up old Carson Palmer numbers, but this would be a game where it could happen.  Ochocinco is a must start as well, but the rest of the wide receivers are iffier.  Palmer has done a good job of spreading the ball around and doesn’t seem to play favorites which is no fun for us fake football kingpins.  If I were to start any other receiver on the Bengals it would be Caldwell.  He could be emerging as Palmer’s safety blanket.

Derek Anderson will be the the starter this week in Cleveland.  This is good news for Braylon Edwards, but not smack me in the ass and call me Chappy good news.  Two years ago DA was good for Edwards, last year, not so much.  This is Edwards’ contract year and DA is playing for his football life.  You have to believe they’ll give the old 5 hour energy drink try.  The Bengals’ defense can pressure the QB and should give Anderson some trouble, but Edwards also should have his chances.  I’d start him if I had him on any of my teams.  The Bengals run D is better than their pass D.  It looks like Jerome Harrison will get the start again.  He’s worth a flier if you are desperate, but I’d look for better options.  If James Davis gets a decent workload he better do something or I’m throwing him on the electric waiver wire.

Seattle @ Indianapolis

Seneca Wallace will get the start again.  He played better than I expected last week, but he was also at home.  This week they are in Indianapolis.  Indy can be run on and Julius Jones continues to surprise.  As usual don’t expect huge numbers from JJ Seahawker, but he’s worth a flex.  I’m not too fired up about any Seahawk receivers in this game.  Burleson is probably a better start than Houshmandzadeh with Wallace in there.  Housh needs accuracy and Burleson can work on the fly, which is where Wallace usually is.  But look for better options against a good Colts’ pass defense.  John Carlson is still getting plenty of looks so if he’s your TE start him.

The Colts are pretty much unstoppable right now.  Manning, Wayne, and Clark are fantasy royalty and Donald Brown and Pierre Garcon are fantasy knights.  They are all worth a start in this game.  Where is Joseph Addai? Good question ghost in my computer.  I’ve been over Addai before the season even started.  Could he slip in for a TD or have a decent game? I guess so, but Brown is the guy in there when it counts.

New York Giants @ Kansas City

The Giants are good.  I hate to say it because they have been boring me since Harry Carson.  I don’t know why, but they put me to sleep as soon as they run onto the field.  Is it their uniforms?  Their style of play?  Tom Coughlin’s red face?  I don’t know.  But, like I said, they are good and they have plenty of fantasy options.  The Chiefs are the opposit of good on defense. Period. Yeah, I said period! Okay, exclamation point!  Anyway, Little Bro, Jacobs, Bradshaw, parenthetical Steve Smith, and Manningham are all starts.

The Giants are good. I hate to say it, oh wait, I already did.  Their defense is good, especially their pass D.  I’d sit Cassell and check your options on Bowe.  He practiced and looks like he’ll play, but the Giants are absolutely murdering #1 receivers. He could find the endzone which would probably be his only saving grace.  Larry Johnson is dead to me.  Jamaal Charles is the only startable Chief this week.  The Giants have actually be pretty bad against the run, giving up over 6 yards a carry.  At some point it will bite them in the arse, but not against the Chiefs.

Detroit @ Chicago

I’d start Megatron against anyone, ever.  If I could have started him in kindergarten I would have.  He had a mediocre game for his standards last week, but still looked about 12x better than anyone on the field.  The Bears’ defense is improving, but injuries keep holding them back.  I expect Detroit to be down which should get them throwing.  Kevin Smith looks to be a game time decision.  If he can go and isn’t hampered by the injury it helps the Lions offense immensely.  Maurice Morris is not good.  I would start Smith if he practices today without limitation, but I doubt that happens.  Megatron is probably your only start for the Lions.

Jay Cutler, Matt Forte, Devin Hester, Greg Olsen, Johnny Knox and Earl Bennett are all good starts against the putrid Lions defense, if you can call it that. No, not putrid, a defense.

Baltimore @ New England

The way Baltimore has been playing it is difficult to sit any of their key players.  Their offensive line is too good to sit either Rice or McGahee against anyone.  I feel like Flacco will have a down game in NE, but I don’t think you can sit him unless you have a good backup or Flacco is your backup.  Todd Heap isn’t getting enough work and unless the waiver wire is Death Valley I’d look there for some help.  Derrick Mason is a must start #3 receiver, but I’d sit Mark Clayton.

The Baltimore D is still formidable, but now more so on the ground than through the air.  There’s no reason to throw any Patriot running back out there against that D.  You might as well sniff model airplane fuel and watch Teletubbies if that’s your plan.  But of course you start Brady, Moss and Welker assuming they all play.

3:15 pm Games

Buffalo @ Miami

Miami’s run D is strong, their pass D is weak and Trent Edwards can’t seem to get the ball to Lee Evans or TO.  This is the week it happens or Buffalo has no chance to compete this year.  I’d start TO and Evans because if you own them you have to against the Dolphins.  Lynch is a wildcard, but I doubt he’ll get a ton of carries and against that D he won’t have much room.  Fast Freddie should still get the majority of the touches and has a better chance to be able to work in open space.  I’d start him.  Trent Edwards is an emergency start even against a bad pass D.

Ronnie Brown is a must start because that’s what he do.  Chad Henne has a better arm than Pennington, but so did my eighth grade piano teacher Ms. Bellings, and she had to be 102.  The Bills pass D is hurting and I think it’s worth the risk to give Bess and Ginn a try.  Bess was targeted quite a bit by Henne last week.  The Bills also are poor against TE’s and Tony Fasano is a poor TE.

New York Jets @ New Orleans

Mark Sanchez has looked like he invested his signing bonus in grit and he’s using it up like there’s no tomorrow.  But grit only can take you so far and I think the Saints are going to bottle him up on Sunday (just think how much a bottle of Mark Sanchez grit would go for on Ebay!) The Saints pass D ain’t too shabby.  They are ballhawking like there is no tomorrow and they don’t give up many yards per catch. You have to run Keller and Cotchery out there, but I’d be careful of Stuckey.  I’m done with Thomas Jones.  Start Leon Washington, they’ll be behind and LDub will get most the looks on their failed attempt to come from behind.

On paper this looks like a tough game for the Saints, but they’ll do their thing at home.  Brees, Thomas, Shockey and Colston are all starts.  Reggie Bush is a flex in ppr leagues, but I’d stay away from him otherwise.  I wouldn’t call on the services of Henderson, Meachem, and Moore.

St. Louis @ San Francisco

Steven Jackson could play for the Rams and still be a fantasy stud.  What?  He does? Wow, I was just kidding.  That’s amazing!  He’s as good as my hyperbole.  So start SJax and well, that’s about it.  Kyle Boller will probably get the start and he can’t be any worse than Bulger.  Donnie Avery is the only other player I’d consider.  Without Laurent Robinson he should get a lot of looks.  I’d wait on starting him if you can, but I wouldn’t trip you on the way to the computer if you needed him.

Coach Singletary says he’ll use Coffee the same way he used Gore, which is to run him into the ground until his ankles twist off.  You have to start Coffee against the Rams.  If Josh Morgan had shown he was even on the field I would say start him, but the only receiving threat I would start this week is Vernon DavisShaun Hill is worth a filler spot, but he is limp noodle armed and not dangerous.

Dallas @ Denver

Denver has given up no touchdowns through the air and picked off 5.  Pretty good, but they have also played Jamarcus Russell and Brady Quinn, two starting QB’s that have already been benched. Huh? Russell is still starting?  Nuh uh!  That’s just crazy.  Well, they’ve faced some losers.  Tony Romo has been good, bad, and could be either in Denver.  You have to start him if your backup blows, but I can’t tell you what he’ll do.  It’s not like I’m some kind of fantasy football guru.  Huh? Oh never mind.   Barber is fully expected to play so you have to start him, but Choice should get a lot of work as well with Felix Jones out.  I don’t need to tell you to start Witten, but I will.  Start him!

The Denver offense is a royal pain in my arse.  And I mean Royal!  What has Josh McDaniels done to Eddie Royal?  First off he brought in Kyle Orton, yeah, he sucks.  And now he’s got this funky rotation and he hardly targets him?  Can you feel my indignation coming through the screen?  So, you can’t start Royal.  You can start Marshall finally.  He’s not elite, but he’s finally startable as Danny Tartabull.  We have a bit of quandary when it comes to Moreno and Buckhalter.  This may be the week we see a complete changing of the guard.  Moreno is a must start until he proves otherwise and Buckhalter is as well.  But if I could choose between the two it would be Moreno.

7:20 pm Game

San Diego @ Pittsburgh

Rivers, Jackson and Gates are must starts as usual, but with LT looking like he’ll play and Sproles’ carries getting cut into, I think you have to bench both against the Steelers.  The Chargers will need to pass to beat the Steelers and that’s what they’ll do, pass, not beat them, well, maybe they will.  I’m no nostrathomas.

Willie Parker has yet to practice and could be a game time decision which isn’t good when it’s the Sunday night game.  The Chargers can be run on, but I’d stay away from their RB situation unless we get a report that Parker’s toe had been healed by Purple Jesus.  Big Ben, Holmes and Ward are all starts, but not knock your socks off starts.

  1. Levo says:
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    I’m essentially desperate for a rb because of byes and injuries.

    My choices are chris brown, aaron brown, micheal robinson, john kuhn (only decent ones i can think of still available). It isnt pretty but with the depth of the league i could use as many points as I can get. Who to get?

    Thanks.

  2. Bob from Germany says:
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    McFadden or Rice this week?

    I’m tending to McFadden somehow…

  3. Will says:
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    Looking at RBs to start, keeping in mind I have Brees at QB. Which 2 of McFadden, Grant, TJones, Rice, and PT Cruiser?

  4. Sos says:
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    I’m strugglin to set my lineup this week. Pick 3 to start out of this group:

    Ray Rice, LT, Lynch, Harvin, Lendale, Garcon.

    This is to fill 1 RB, 1 WR, and 1 Flex. I’m leaning Lynch, Rice, Harvin but I also suck at Fantasy Football. Thanks.

  5. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Levo: grab Chris Brown, hope he gets a goal line carry for a TD. I’m in a super deep league also, I feel your pain!

  6. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Bob from Germany: I think you almost have to start McFadden against that soft Texans run D

  7. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Sos: is it PPR or non-PPR? do you want to go for safe starts or riskier ones with more upside?

  8. Fade says:
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    I’m sure in a pickle here. I need to start either Slaton or Coffee this week but I have no idea who. They both have great matchups (Oak and Stl), bu Coffee will probably have more touches while Slaton is simply the better player. Most sites rank Slaton higher for this week, but I’m unsure.

  9. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    Wow, tough week for lineup decisions all around. Props to Drew for getting it started.

    @Levo: Chris Brown and cross your fingers for goal line carries.

    @Bob from Germany: McFadden, better matchup and it’s at least possible he’ll get carries in the red zone, unlike Rice.

    @Sos: @Sos: Rice and Harvin are locks I’d think. Roll the dice on the third one. I’d lean toward LenDale.

  10. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Fade: I think both are must starts. Are you sure you can’t sit any other players? The 49’ers have no one else at RB. Coffee is going to get a ton of touches- probably 30 or so.

  11. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    My matchups are tough too. My options, with my own thoughts:

    QB: Rivers or Campbell (Rivers is the stud, but @Pit, while Campbell gets TB at home; leaning Rivers)

    WR: Brandon Marshall or Devin Hester (Marshall’s only had one decent game, and Hester gets the Lions)

    RB/Flex: 2 from Choice, Rice, McFadden, Lynch (I’m leaning McFadden and Rice, but considering benching Rice for Choice)

  12. Plainview says:
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    Burleson or Nate Washington this week?

  13. Christopher says:
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    Non-PPR league, which two start for me this week:
    MJD
    Brown
    Bradshaw

  14. Tankass says:
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    Donald Brown or Fred Jackson is both PPR and non-ppr leagues?

  15. Fade says:
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    @Drew: I went RB heavy early on and made some big trades. I have 2 RB slots and a Flex. I have MJD and Benson slotted in right now, with Coffee and Slaton fighting for that last spot.

  16. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Plainview: I like Washington against the Jags.

  17. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @Plainview: Washington. No reason, just lean that way when I think about it.

    @Tankass: Fred Jackson, especially in PPR. Lynch will be eased into the offense, so I’m expecting them to split 1st and 2nd down carries, with Jackson still getting all the 3rd down action.

  18. Tankass says:
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    @fade I really don’t think you can go wrong with either coffee or slaton. Coffee is going to get a ton of carries and st. louis stinks, and the raiders have gotten ran all over the last two weeks.

  19. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Matt B: RB- Benson, Jones. WR- Ward, Cotchery. Flex- Knox

  20. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @Matt B: I like your picks but I’d swap Orange Julius for Fred Jackson (because it’s PPR).

  21. Dingo says:
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    I love coming to Razzball to find company for my misery. In one league, I drafted LT (1st round), McNabb (4th round), Gonzalez (5th round), and oh by the way Larry Johnson (6th round). Amazingly enough, I’m in 3rd place, thanks mostly to Matt Schaub (snuggie!) and my wheel-o-surprising-defenses.

    My bench is shot, though, and this week I’m having a hard time filling my 2nd RB slot. Who out of Taylor/Betts/White/Mendenhall is the best bet in a non-PPR league? It sounds like the consensus here is for LenDale White, but he hasn’t gotten more than 8 carries or 33 YFS yet, even against the Texans. Is he definitely locked in as the Titans’ red zone rusher?

  22. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @Dingo: I would say Taylor or Betts. Keep an eye on the Portis injury. If he’s out (probably won’t happen) you have to go with Betts. But old man Taylor ran strong last week and he’s not a horrible option for non PPR.

  23. Dingo says:
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    @Drew: Taylor and Betts over White?

  24. stumanji says:
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    @Dingo: Fred or Chester?

  25. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @Dingo: LenDale was called on on 5 of 6 red zone carries last week and all of the goalline carries. I’d start him against Jax.

  26. hacienda says:
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    Henderson, Ginn, or Sproles at Flex this week in a .5 ppr league?

    Love the site.

  27. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @hacienda: Sproles in ppr

  28. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @hacienda: Ginn

  29. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @hacienda: I do think it is either Sproles (Doc’s pick) or Ginn. I’m not that enthusiastic about either. It would be nice to know how much time Tomlinson’s going to get this week.

  30. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    @Drew: @Drew: sims-walker or owens(it might not matter if welker doesnt play)any new news on welker?also gates vs pitt def or miller vs san diego`s def,im guessing sims-walker and gates,and hoping welker plays

  31. hacienda says:
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    That’s pretty much what I was thinking. Ginn seems to have more upside–he could make a couple of big plays this week, or get nothing–but Sproles probably has a better shot at getting some stats, even if they’re mediocre. Anyhow, thanks for the quick reply–your site has quickly become a daily read for me.

  32. jamiesonmj says:
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    lesean mccoy was dropped!! Im putting in the waiver claim but im not sure whos best to drop: coffee, mcfadden, manningham, or harvin! None of which Id be pleased to get rid of! Im trying desperately to trade LT for an allstar WR but the plan isnt going well. As a last resort, who would you drop for mccoy, if anyone?

  33. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @AL KOHOLIC: Still waiting on Welker myself. New England’s vagueness with injuries is so annoying. I agree with your present strategy (Sims-Walker, Gates, Welker if he plays).

    @hacienda: thanks man! spread the good word!

  34. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @jamiesonmj: Man that is tough! I hate to tell you to drop any of those guys but I think manningham is the one I’d lose. I think you have to get McCoy I don’t trust Westbrook’s health.

  35. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    @Drew: ditto here drew,ive told doc several times but great job you guys are doing here,one more thought,i have gates and miller,is miller good enough to try and trade gates for boldin(the guy wants gates

  36. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    scratch the last question on boldin

  37. xopchipili says:
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    I’ve got LT w the Sproles handcuff. PPR league w return yards. Gotta go with one for my flex. Assuming LT will play but might see limited time, who do I go with?

  38. mgeoffriau

    mgeoffriau says:
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    @xopchipili: Sproles. Even if LT plays, you’ve got third down screen passes, return yardage, and the likelihood that LT can’t play all the first and second downs anyway.

  39. Drew

    Drew says:
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    @xopchipili: I am in a return league also. It’s better now w/ LT in there b/c they won’t take away Sproles return duties. I am definitely going with him this week.

  40. Sifl says:
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    I’m having a hard time setting my running backs for this weekend; I can play three out of: Barber, Rice, Donald Brown, LT, Choice.

    Right now I’m leaning Barber, Rice, Brown – mainly wondering if I should use Choice instead of one of the last two guys (I’m assuming LT is too risky to start this week). Any suggestions?

  41. Tecmo Super Bowl says:
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    There’s a guy in my league who drafted heavy on the RB’s and wants to trade for a QB. I’m thinking of offering Flacco for McGehee (he also has Addai, Buckhalter and J Stewart). The only problem is Flacco is my Schaub Snuggie. If I had any other starter, I would do the deal, but Schaub makes me nervous. What do I do?

  42. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @Sifl: I like your first thought.

    @Tecmo Super Bowl: How do your RB’s look right now?

  43. Tecmo Super Bowl says:
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    @Doc: C. Johnson, R. Brown, Washington is my flex with Beanie and Harrison on my bench. It’s a 14 teamer, so Rbs are hard to come by and I’m thinking McGahee would shore up my flex spot. Leon has been a little dissapointing so far…

  44. sickmangarner says:
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    Snagged Glen Coffee off waivers this week and now have been offered Santonio Holmes and Tashard Choice for him. Seems like a good deal but I’m just playing around the edges. I’ve got Roddy, Colston at WR with Manningham, Garcon and Ochocinco as subs. Got MJD and Slaton at RB with Ryan Grant, Donald Brown, Mendenhall as subs. Still, would you do that trade since Holmes should have value all year and Coffee is done after a couple weeks?

  45. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @Tecmo Super Bowl: It would be a risk in such a deep league to lose your snuggie! I’m guessing the waiver wire is pretty slim. But I’m all about living on the edge! I think it’s a good trade.

  46. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @sickmangarner: It’s actually a pretty even trade since you would have to drop someone pretty good. I would look to go back at him with an 2 for 2 trade. Grant might be a good trade piece. He just doesn’t look good.

  47. Doc

    Doc says:
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    There’s a new post up. Smack your questions down there.

  48. Niners says:
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    Got a couple of lineup decisions to make:

    1. Pick one RB of Rice, McFadden, Coffee. It has to be Coffee, right? My other RB is C. Johnson.

    2. Pick two WR of Berrian, Bess, Bennett. Leaning Bennett and Berrian, but I did notice that Henne targeted Bess 7 times in the 2nd half last week. Berrian seems to be the most talented of the bunch, though. My third WR is Megatron.

    Thanks. Your advice in baseball is about to win me my keeper league.

  49. Bofum says:
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    Need a bye week fill in Quarterback. Collins, Hill, or Stafford

  50. Dingo says:
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    @stumanji: Sorry for not clarifying – I meant Chester.

  51. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @Bofum: Collins

  52. Bofum says:
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    Reggie Bush or Darren Sproles? Not a ppr league

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