Fantasy Friday: Week 4

September 26th, 2008 - 12:22 am

Here’s this week’s look at good and bad fantasy matchups.

Note: I try to pick less obvious players. I’m not going to tell you to play Peyton Manning or LaDainian Tomlinson or Randy Moss. No kiddin’, Sherlock.

Warning: I’m not immune to accidentally suggesting a player that might be injured and out for the week — or even the season. As much as I follow the game, mistakes can happen. If it does happen, just give me a polite jab and I’ll correct myself.

Thumbs Up

The following players should have favorable matchups this week. Their chances of success are greater due to tendencies by the opponent’s defense.

Quarterbacks

Philip Rivers, SD vs. Oakland
Always a good rivalry, San Diego is putting up massive numbers this year and Oakland’s pass defense is among the league’s worst.

Kurt Warner, Ari vs. NY Jets
The Cardinals should be able to throw the ball against the Jets.

Other favorable matchups: Trent Edwards vs. St. Louis, J.T. O’Sullivan vs. New Orleans, Aaron Rodgers vs. Tampa Bay.

Running Backs

Jamal Lewis, Cle vs. Cincinnati
The Bengals and Browns have traditionally battled to high-scoring games, but the Bengals are at the bottom of the league against the run.

Maurice Jones-Drew vs. Houston
Jones-Drew is a little banged up so pay attention to the injury report, but he had a good game last week and should continue that against a poor run defense this week.

Other favorable matchups: Broncos RBs vs. Kansas City, Marshawn Lynch vs. St. Louis, Panthers RBs vs. Atlanta.

Wide Receivers

Greg Jennings, GB vs. Tampa Bay
Jennings should hit your lineup every week anyway, but this week he faces a weaker pass defense.

Lee Evans, Buf vs. St. Louis
Any time you can start a player against the Rams, you should relish the opportunity.

Other favorable matchups: Dwayne Bowe vs. Denver, Hank Baskett vs. Chicago, Bryant Johnson vs. New Orleans.

Tight Ends

Vernon Davis, SF vs. New Orleans
New Orleans always battles to high scores and Davis has to break out sometime.

Donald Lee, GB vs. Tampa Bay
Good week for Lee to get involved. He should have an advantageous matchup.

Other favorable matchups: Tampa Bay TEs vs. Green Bay, Chris Cooley vs. Dallas, Bo Scaife vs. Minnesota.

Kickers

John Kasay, Car vs. Atlanta
Kasay is one of the top kickers in the league and should be a regular play each week.

Josh Scobee, Jac vs. Houston
Fresh off a game-winner last week, Scobee should get plenty of chances to kick field goals against Houston.

Other favorable matchups: Joe Nedney vs. New Orleans, Mason Crosby vs. Tampa Bay, Nate Kaeding vs. Oakland.

Defenses

Denver Broncos, Den vs. Kansas City
The Chiefs haven’t had a lot of success offensively this year.

Jacksonville Jaguars, Jac vs. Houston
The Jaguars defense played well against the Colts last week and now face a low-scoring Texans team.

Other favorable matchups: Buffalo Bills vs. St. Louis, Tennessee Titans vs. Minnesota, Dallas Cowboys vs. Washington.

Thumbs Down

The following players should have unfavorable matchups this week. Their chances of success are worse due to tendencies by the opponent’s defense.

Quarterbacks

Ben Roethlisberger, Pit vs. Baltimore
After getting pummeled last week by Philly’s defense, next up is the Ravens. Ouch.

David Garrard, Jac vs. Houston
The Texans aren’t very good against the run, but they’re one of the top pass defenses.

Other unfavorable matchups: Jay Cutler vs. Kansas City, Derek Anderson vs. Cincinnati, Kyle Orton vs. Philadelphia.

Running Backs

Matt Forte, Chi vs. Philadelphia
Forte is fourth in the league at running the football, but the Eagles are No. 1 at stopping it.

Rashard Mendenhall, Pit vs. Baltimore
With Willie Parker banged up and out for this game, Mendenhall will make his first start. And he couldn’t have asked for a worse matchup.

Other unfavorable matchups: Willis McGahee vs. Pittsburgh, Chris Johnson vs. Minnesota, Edgerrin James vs. NY Jets.

Wide Receivers

Santonio Holmes, Pit vs. Baltimore
Hines Ward usually plays the Ravens tough, but I wouldn’t expect much success through the air from the Steelers.

Bernard Berrian, Min vs. Tennessee
The Titans are playing excellent football right now and should make it tough for the Vikings to move the ball.

Other unfavorable matchups: Brandon Marshall vs. Kansas City, Matt Jones vs. Houston, Torry Holt vs. Buffalo.

Tight Ends

Todd Heap, Bal vs. Pittsburgh
Heap is off to a slow start this year to begin with, plus, a rookie quarterback going into Pittsburgh is never good.

Randy McMichael, StL vs. Buffalo
I would generally stay away from most Rams players to begin with, but the Bills are tough against the pass.

Other unfavorable matchups: Visanthe Schiancoe vs. Tennessee, Tony Scheffler vs. Kansas City, Heath Miller vs. Baltimore.

Kickers

Rob Bironas, Ten vs. Minnesota
The Titans and Vikings should battle to a low-scoring game.

Nick Novak, KC vs. Denver
The Broncos usually play in high-scoring games, but the Chiefs kicker just hasn’t gotten a lot of opportunities to put points on the board this year.

Other unfavorable matchups: Jeff Reed vs. Baltimore, Kris Brown vs. Jacksonville, Shaun Suisham vs. Dallas.

Defense

Chicago Bears, Chi vs. Philadelphia
The Eagles are one of the highest scoring offenses in the league and the Bears can’t figure out their pass defense or pass rush.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers, TB vs. Green Bay
The Packers have put up big numbers this year and the Buccaneers can be thrown on.

Other unfavorable matchups: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver, Oakland Raiders vs. San Diego, San Francisco 49ers vs. New Orleans.

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