Whoa! The Saints are marching! But I think
Carolina steps up and stops them here. Saint RBs Deuce McAllister
are still worthy plays, but neither will have a monster game
against a tough Panther run defense. QB Drew Brees
will be okay, but nothing
spectacular in a potential letdown game for New Orleans. For Carolina,
I like QB Jake Delhomme
and both of his wide receivers (Steve Smith
). RB DeShaun Foster may finally get it done this week,
but he's been a disappointment through the first three weeks. Carolina
is still a quality football team...this week's home game against an unrested
Saints team should give them a chance to prove it.
these teams have played and looked better than expected through the first
three weeks of the season. Minnesota's RB Chester Taylor has proved to be
extremely versatile and I like him in this game. For Buffalo, I like RB
Willis McGahee (who is tops in NFL rushing to date) and also like WR Lee Evans.
|Kurt Warner fumbled
4 (FOUR) times last week to cost the Cardinals the game and he's fumbled
8 (EIGHT) times in his first three weeks of the season. Coach Dennis Green
agreed to keep Warner as his starter for week 4, but Warner is certainly
on a short leash if he falters against the Falcons. Bench Warner until he
gets it together, but keep his wide receivers (Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin) in your lineup - they're just too good to sit and someone will get
them the ball. I also like RB Edgerrin James against the Falcons after their
short week. Atlanta floundered in the Superdome on MNF, but were likely
caught up in the emotion surrounding the game. The Falcons and QB Michael Vick will rebound and I like Vick to run wild and throw a TD or two. RB
Warrick Dunn will also be a nice play as the Falcons find their stride.
Vick may look for Alge Crumpler inside the 20, but Crumpler will need a
better performance than he had against the Saints (and needs to hold on
to his TD passes when thrown to him).
|In the combined 5
games played for these two teams, they have outscored their opponents 137-27.
I don't expect either team to dominate the other and believe each will be
held in check. I like San Diego's RB LaDainian Tomlinson and TE Antonio Gates. For the Ravens, I like TE Todd Heap (but heap may be a game time
decision). Other than the LT2 owners and owners of Gates or Heap in TE required
leagues, it may be a good idea to avoid this game for fantasy plays.
|The Dolphins barely
scraped by Tennessee last week. So technically...they did do something positive
this season and can't totally be dismissed. We'll give Fins QB Daunte Culpepper
a starting nod here against a Houston defense that is ranked last and playing
awful. WR Chris Chambers has the skills to bust out as long as Cpep can
get him the ball. RB Ronnie Brown will get enough touches to do plenty of
damage and should be started with confidence here. I like the Texans' Andre Johnson regardless of the situation...although most of his yards and catches
have come as games have become one-sided for the opponent.
|Chiefs' RB Larry Johnson is planning his coming out party against the Niners and we believe
him. TE Tony Gonzalez should also have a good game here, but we're not ready
to recommend QB Damon Huard (even though he looked good in his last outing).
If the Niners' RB Frank Gore plays (check his status closer to game time),
he should have a decent game...although Michael Robinson is likely to now
get his goal-line carries due to Gore's propensity to fumble.
|Regardless of the
media frenzy surrounding Terrell Owens and the Dallas Cowboys this week,
the Boys will tear up the Titans on the road. I like QB Drew Bledsoe, WRs
Terrell Owens (if he plays) and Terry Glenn, TE Jason Witten, and RB Julius
Jones. For the Titans, WR Drew Bennett is the only fantasy play worth considering.
Bennett has had some nice fantasy games due to many games being out of hand
and Tennessee's propensity to put the ball in the air in garbage time.
|Both of these teams
should be able to move the ball and score some points in this one. With
the way Detroit's defense has looked in weeks 2 and 3, I like all of St. Louis' skill players...including QB Marc Bulger, RB Steven Jackson, and
WR Torry Holt. For Detroit, I like RB Julius Jones and WR Roy Williams.
QB Jon Kitna is also a nice option here as a bye week replacement if you
need him. Will this be the week that Mike Martz finally gets his offense
in gear? - He was a bit closer last week, but was playing the Packers. Martz
should have more motivation going "home" to St. Louis.
I really like Jax rookie RB Maurice Jones-Drew in this game and believe
he'll add to what he did against the Colts last week. After watching him
in person, I'm convinced he's the real deal and will completely overtake
Fred Taylor in the Jags backfield. I also like QB Byron Leftwich, but
have a more difficult time figuring his target...although WR Matt Jones
is the most likely if healthy. The Jacksonville defense is very solid,
especially against the run. If you have RB Clinton Portis, then play him...but
don't expect a big game. It will be easier for the Skins to throw. I like
TE Chris Cooley as a factor here.
|Oakland had a bye
last week and is getting Cleveland at home. But it may not even matter.
The Raiders looked like the only fire hydrant at Westminster in their only
two games this season and appear to have a long way to go to compete in
this league. I like Browns' QB Charlie Frye here with WR Braylon Edwards
and TE Kellen Winslow Jr. For the Raiders, I'd like to recommend placing
the whole team on the bench until further notice...but play Randy Moss if
you have him. RB LaMont Jordan is a workhorse and would shine on any other
team. If the Raiders somehow figured out how to compete over their bye week,
then Jordan is the most likely to benefit.
|Matt Hasselbeck threw
for 5 TDs as the Seahawks destroyed the New York Giants last week. But week
5 will be different for Seattle. The Seahawks go into Chicago and will face
an extremely talented Bears' defense. Add Shaun Alexander's broken foot
to the equation and things look even worse. Although I don't believe in
benching your stars (in this case Hasselbeck and Darrell Jackson), my advice
is to sit them against Chicago and treat the next two weeks like Seattle
bye weeks (Seattle has a week 6 bye). For the Bears, their best play is
their D/ST. The Seahawk defense may not match up to the Bears, but it is
very solid...and solid enough to curb the Bears' offense to minimal yardage
and few points.
These two teams will put up a bunch of points on MNF. Philadelphia has
a strong defensive front (even without Jevon Kearse), but their secondary
is still banged up. Green Bay's defense is just porous. Packers' QB Brett Favre loves MNF and he'll throw at least 35 times...and mostly toward
WR Donald Driver. Look for Philly QB Donovan McNabb to assault Green Bay
early with strikes to RB Brian Westbrook, WRs Reggie Brown & Donte Stallworth, and TE L.J. Smith. Westbrook will also get his usual rushing
yardage and will again put up stellar fantasy stats for his owners. Be
sure to check Westbrook's and Stallworth's injury status prior to gametime.
BYE WEEKS - Denver, New York (Giants), Pittsburgh,
send your fantasy questions to: email@example.com
Check here every Thursday for game-by-game fantasy analysis. We give fantasy owners the edge heading into week four of the NFL fantasy season.