Fantasy Football Player Analysis and NFL Game Matchup Analysis

FANTASY FOOTBALL PLAYER ANALYSIS AND NFL GAME MATCHUP ANALYSIS!

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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY MATCHUP ANALYSIS - WEEK 17
In order to get you ready for a full slate of Week 17 games, weíve previewed each and every one of the NFL games this week just in time for you to make your last second roster decisions.

Players are ranked on a scale of 1-5 game balls. 1 means that sitting them is an automatic decision, while 5 game balls means to expect a lot of highlights on ESPN late Sunday night. Rankings take everything into account as of Wednesday night and may not include things like updated injury concerns and random mishaps like hotel food poisoning.


New York Giants (7-8)
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Washington Redskins (5-10)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Eli Manning QB Jason Campbell
Tiki Barber RB Ladell Betts
Brandon Jacobs RB T.J. Duckett
Plaxico Burress WR Santana Moss
Tim Carter WR Brandon Lloyd
Jeremy Shockey TE Chris Cooley
New York Giants DEF Washington Redskins
This should be a tough fought battle.  Although their chances are dismal, the Giants still have a shot at the playoffs.  However, the Redskins are playing for nothing.  And, likely, this game has implications for Coach Tom Coughlin.  If he loses, he will most certainly get fired.  As far as the fantasy implications, play RB Tiki Barber.  It is possible that this will be his last game.  Expect him to get a fair number of carries and have a good day.  Also, in recent weeks, RB Brandon Jacobs has become a reliable backup, if you are in desperate need for running back.  Meanwhile, QB Eli Manning has had a completely inconsistent fantasy season.  If you are playing this week, you are in the championship.  And, he should not be your quarterback.  As always, for the Giants, TE Jeremy Shockey and WR Plaxico Burress are reliable plays.  For the Redskins, RB Ladell Betts has become a monster of a running back this season.  He is an outstanding fantasy play every week.  Although he might not be your fantasy championship quarterback, QB Jason Campbell is on the road to be an outstanding fantasy quarterback.  However, I would not play him this weekend if other options are available.  I anticipate that Campbell will test the Giants secondary.  As such, expect WR Santana Moss, WR Brandon Lloyd, and TE Chris Cooley to see a lot of deep action this weekend.

Pittsburgh Steelers (7-8)
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Cincinnati Bengals (8-7)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Ben Roethlisberger QB Carson Palmer
Willie Parker RB Rudi Johnson
Verron Haynes RB Kenny Watson
Hines Ward WR Chad Johnson
Santonio Holmes WR TJ Houshmandzadeh
Heath Miller TE Reggie Kelly
Pittsburgh Steelers DEF Cincinnati Bengals
This game is a must win for the Bengals.  Expect them to play, accordingly.  The last time these two teams met, the Pittsburgh defense completely shut RB Rudi Johnson down.  However, given how he played last week, Johnson is an outstanding play.  Keep him in your lineup.  Although he had a tough week last week, QB Carson Palmer could be a decent play this weekend.  He is struggling from injuries, lagging late in the season.  However, if he is your main guy, you have to go with him this weekend in your championship.  Also, given the number of touches he got last week, WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh will be a great play this weekend.  For the Steelers, as of late, RB Willie Parker has not been as outstanding as he was earlier in the season.  He has been somewhat inconsistent, as of late.  But, as I stated before, if he is your main guy, you have to go with them this weekend.  However, if you have a choice at quarterback, QB Ben Roethlisberger is not the guy that you want to go to this weekend.  He had a terrible outing the last time these two teams met.  And, I would not expect too much from him this weekend.

Detroit Lions (2-13)
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Dallas Cowboys (9-6)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Jon Kitna QB Tony Romo
Arlen Harris RB Julius Jones
Brian Calhoun RB Marion Barber
Roy Williams WR Terrell Owens
Mike Furrey WR Terry Glenn
Jermaine Wiggins TE Jason Witten
Detroit Lions DEF Dallas Cowboys
The Dallas Cowboys still have a shot at winning the NFC in East, with a win this weekend.  Therefore, I would hope that they would play with more enthusiasm than they did last weekend.  For anyone who had QB Tony Romo, WR Terrell Owens, or RB Marion Barber last week, you paid the price.  And, you are lucky to still be alive.  However, I think that things will change this weekend.  We are talking about the Detroit Lions.  I would be confident in playing any of the above against the Lions, along with RB Julius Jones.  For the Lions, the receiving game has become an excellent and reliable play each week.  WR Roy Williams and WR Mike Furrey are both outstanding plays this weekend.  Each will reach the end zone once.  And, if youíre in an absolute bind, I believe that QB Jon Kitna will be a half decent play this weekend.  As always, keep the Detroit running game on your bench.  That includes RB Arlen Harris.

Cleveland Browns (4-11)
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Houston Texans (5-10)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Charlie Frye QB David Carr
Reuben Droughns RB Wali Lundy
Jerome Harrison RB Ron Dayne
Braylon Edwards WR Andre Johnson
Dennis Northcutt WR Eric Moulds
Kellen Winslow TE Owen Daniels
Cleveland Browns DEF Houston Texans
One good rule of thumb for fantasy this season is to keep the Cleveland running game on your bench.  RB Reuben Droughns is a consistent fantasy loser-week in and week out.  Although they are playing the Texans this weekend, the Browns wide receiving corps is a poor play.  Keep WR Braylon Edwards on your bench.  On the other hand, TE Kellen Winslow could be a decent play for you.  He is the only somewhat decent fantasy option for the Browns.  For the Texans, at this point this season, it appears that RB Ron Dayne has the hot hand.  I would play him this weekend.  I cannot believe that Iím saying this.  But, I think he could be a decent play in your fantasy championship against a lackluster Cleveland defense.  And, of course, WR Andre Johnson is an outstanding play this weekend and every other weekend.  You will see him in the end zone once or twice this week.  Heís become an outstanding receiver and a very reliable target for QB David Carr.  About Carr, he is a somewhat average fantasy quarterback.  He is not a quarterback for a fantasy championship.  Unless you have absolutely no better options, I would keep him on my bench.

Jacksonville Jaguars (8-7)
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Kansas City Chiefs (8-7)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
David Garrard QB Trent Green
Fred Taylor RB Larry Johnson
Maurice Jones-Drew RB Michael Bennett
Matt Jones WR Eddie Kennison
Reggie Williams WR Samie Parker
George Wrighster TE Tony Gonzales
Jacksonville Jaguars DEF Kansas City Chiefs
Both teams have the opportunity to make a playoff run-though both will require the assistance of other teams, this weekend.  For the Jaguars, RB Maurice Jones-Drew has become a rookie of the year candidate.  He is a definite start in your championship this weekend.  It appears that Jones-Drew is picking up the slack of RB Fred Taylorís injury.  It is unclear about Taylorís status this weekend.  Regardless, I would not play him.  If Jones-Drew is available for you to play, he is a definite start.  QB David Garrard is not a fantasy quarterback, yet.  And, he is definitely not an option for you this weekend.  Also, I would stay away from the Jacksonville receiving corps.  The Jaguars have become a running team.  The Jacksonville receivers should not be in your lineup in the championship.  For the Chiefs, they will run, run, and run some more.  RB Larry Johnson will struggle against a very tough Jacksonville defense.  Nevertheless, if you have him-of course, you have to play him.  I would also stay away from the Chiefs passing game with the exception of TE Tony GonzalezQB Trent Green is struggling.  He should not be your championship quarterback.

St. Louis Rams (7-8)
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Minnesota Vikings (6-9)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Marc Bulger QB Tarvaris Jackson
Steven Jackson RB Chester Taylor
Stephen Davis RB Mewelde Moore
Torry Holt WR Troy Williamson
Isaac Bruce WR Marcus Robinson
Joe Klopfenstein TE Jermaine Wiggins
St. Louis Rams DEF Minnesota Vikings
The Rams will fight this weekend, because they have a lot to fight for.  They still have the opportunity to squeeze into the playoffs.  Expect a huge game from RB Steven Jackson.  He has had an MVP quality season.  And, he is a must play for you this week, in the championship.  QB Marc Bulger has had some great games and some less than great games, this season.  Last week, he had an amazing game.  If you have him, he is your starter this weekend.  Count on him to have a fantastic game... a few TDs and over 300.  This brings me to WR Tory Holt.  Holt is a great play this weekend.  And, if you are in a bind at the wide receiver position, WR Isaac Bruce is also an outstanding play, this weekend.  For the Vikings, RB Chester Taylor is, of course, an excellent play.  He will have an outstanding day on Sunday.  Other than Taylor, keep any and all Vikings players on your bench for your fantasy championship.  Though a receiver, here and there, from the Vikings might be okay as a fill-and from week to week, they will not lead you to victory your championship.  Find other options.

Carolina Panthers (7-8)
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New Orleans Saints (10-5)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Jake Delhomme QB Drew Brees
DeShaun Foster RB Deuce McAllister
DeAngelo Williams RB Reggie Bush
Steve Smith WR Joe Horn
Keyshawn Johnson WR Devery Henderson
Kris Mangrum TE Mark Campbell
Carolina Panthers DEF New Orleans Saints
QB Jake Delhomme may or may not play, and may or may not be playing for his job next season, if he does. QB Chris Weinke isnít the answer, but they could seek another option. Delhomme should have a decent day against a team that has nothing to play for if he does take the field... RB DeAngelo Williams and RB Deshaun Foster each put up good numbers when they get a lot of carries. In a RB platoon, thatís not a good situation...Not surprisingly, WR Steve Smith and WR Keyshawn Johnson have seen their fortunes fall as the instability at quarterback has risen. However, each is a gamer and wonít take this one off. Both make good starts...The Saints have nothing to play for, with a bye locked up and home field advantage out of reach. All of their top players will likely take significant time off this game, and they all make unreliable options. QB Drew Brees is probably the most reliable option of the bunch.

Oakland Raiders (2-13)
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New York Jets (9-6)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Aaron Brooks QB Chad Pennington
Justin Fargas RB Kevan Barlow
Zach Crockett RB Leon Washington
Randy Moss WR Laveranues Coles
Ronald Curry WR Jerricho Cotchery
Courtney Anderson TE Chris Baker
Oakland Raiders DEF New York Jets
QB Aaron Brooks traditionally plays just well in December to get his job back the next year, but will struggle against a Jets team that is playing for a playoff birth at home... RB Justin Fargas rushed for a career best 90 yards last week and might be in line to get more carries this week... WR Ronald Curry is playing up to his ability, with 28 receptions in his last 3 games. Heís about the only good option this week...If thereís one thing that the Raiders do have, itís a decent defense. In 9 of their last 11 games theyíve held the opposition to under 21 points. QB Chad Pennington has been getting more credit than his numbers say he should be, but numbers are all that matters in fantasy. He might have a tough game this week against the Raiders secondary... RB Leon Washington looked very good against the Dolphins and figures to get as many, if not more, looks this week... WR Laveranues Coles and WR Jerricho Cotchery could be the first pair of Jets receivers to top 1,000 yards since Wayne Chrebet and Keyshawn Johnson did it in 1998...

Seattle Seahawks (8-7)
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Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-11)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Matt Hasselback QB Tim Rattay
Shaun Alexander RB Carnell Williams
Maurcie Morris RB Michael Pittman
Deion Branch WR Joey Galloway
Nate Burleson WR Michael Clayton
Jerramy Stevens TE Anthony Becht
Seattle Seahawks DEF Tampa Bay Buccaneers
QB Matt Hasselbeck has been very good in his past 11 games on the road, with 14 touchdowns to only 3 picks. Heís facing a sub par Bucs defense. However, the Seahawks are set in their playoff position, regardless of this week goes. Itís unlikely that he, RB Shaun Alexander , WR Darrell Jackson , or Deion Branch will see the field much this week... QB Tim Rattay gets the start for the Bucs this week, and has been a decent option in the time he gets. Heíll be throwing to WR Joey Galloway , who will be playing his former team...None of the running backs in Tampa, including 2005 first rounder RB Cadillac Williams will be a decent option this week.

New England Patriots (11-4)
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Tennessee Titans (8-7)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Tom Brady QB Vince Young
Corey Dillon RB Travis Henry
Laurence Maroney RB LenDale White
Reche Caldwell WR Drew Bennett
Troy Brown WR Brandon Jones
Ben Watson TE Ben Troupe
New England Patriots DEF Tennessee Titans
QB Tom Brady has been on a roll since the Pro Bowl voting ended, and should play well again. All the focus is on Vince and the Titans, a situation in which the Patriots thrive... RB Corey Dillon is quietly seeking a 3rd consecutive season with 12 touchdowns (he has 11 now)... RB Laurence Maroney is halfway there; he has 6 on the season...None of the Patriots wideouts are fantasy material this week, though TE Ben Watson is a good start... QB Vince Young is a very perplexing fantasy option. He seems to be Mike Vick-lite, except he pulls out the games on the field. Heís a risky start if youíre still playing, as you likely have a safer option at quarterback... RB Travis Henry has kept RB LenDale White on the bench much of this season, and is having an excellent year. Heíll once again be the focus of the offense... WR Brandon Jones had 101 receiving yards and a TD last week.

Buffalo Bills (7-8)
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Baltimore Ravens (12-3)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
JP Losman QB Steve McNair
Willis McGahee RB Jamal Lewis
Anthony Thomas RB Mike Anderson
Lee Evans WR Mark Clayton
Roscoe Parrish WR Derrick Mason
Robert Royal TE Todd Heap
Buffalo Bills DEF Baltimore Ravens
QB JP Losman has come along this year and is now a decent fantasy quarterback, when he is playing teams that are not Baltimore... RB Wilis McGahee looks to become the 3rd Bill with 15 100-yard games, joining Thurman Thomas and OJ Simpson. The odds arenít good... WR Lee Evans has the 3rd most receiving touchdowns in franchise history, and has one in each of the teamís past 3 games...The Ravens are still in the running for home field advantage throughout the playoffs, and should play their starters as long as necessary to assure victory... QB Steve McNair has really played well since Brian Billick took over the offense, and the wide receivers have seen their numbers increase accordingly...One player who has slowed down his first half pace is TE Todd Heap , as McNair has been targeting the wideouts more... WR Mark Clayton has been the chief beneficiary, and makes for a good sleeper play this week.

San Francisco 49ers (6-9)
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Denver Broncos (9-6)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Alex Smith QB Jay Cutler
Frank Gore RB Tatum Bell
Michael Robinson RB Mike Bell
Bryan Gilmore WR Javon Walker
Arnaz Battle WR Brandon Marshall
Vernon Davis TE Tony Scheffler
San Francisco 49ers DEF Denver Broncos
QB Alex Smith will struggle against the Broncosí good pass defense. The 49ersí receiving core is shorthanded with the suspension of WR Antonio Bryant. WR Arnaz Battle will contribute some yards, but the only real fantasy option in San Franís passing game is TE Vernon Davis, who has stepped it up since recovering from a broken leg. RB Frank Gore has had a phenomenal season, and will easily be a top 10 pick in next years fantasy drafts. He has been a must start every week. QB Jay Cutler has thrown 2 TDs in every game he has started, thus far, and is a pretty good play this week as well. WR Javon Walker has emerged as Cutlerís favorite target, with WR Brandon Marshall passing WR Rod Smith for the second favorite option. Play Walker. TE Tony Scheffler has been Cutlerís favorite red-zone target. If you are in a bind at TE, Scheffler is probably available on the waiver wire. RB Mike Bell has been the more reliable of the Bells, recently, due to RB Tatum Bellís inability to hold on to the football. Neither has been spectacular though.

Miami Dolphins (6-9)
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Indianapolis Colts (11-4)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Cleo Lemon QB Peyton Manning
Ronnie Brown RB Joseph Addai
Sammy Morris RB Dominic Rhodes
Chris Chambers WR Marvin Harrison
Marty Booker WR Reggie Wayne
Randy McMichael TE Dallas Clark
Miami Dolphins DEF Indianapolis Colts
The Dolphins are out of the playoff hunt, so theyíll give a start to QB Cleo Lemon. He was hot off the bench last week, but he doesnít have enough experience to deserve fantasy play. Unless the Colts jump out to a big lead early, donít expect Miami to pass very much against a horrible Indy run defense. TE Randy McMichael seemed to have the best chemistry with Lemon, and a TE is usually an inexperienced QBís best friend. As long as Miamiís defense keeps it close, RB Ronnie Brown should have a pretty good day running the football. The Dolphins secondary doesnít pick a lot of balls, but DE Jason Taylor and the D-line get a lot of sacks. If they can pressure QB Peyton Manning, he may struggle, but he is still the number one fantasy QB in the world. He should only be on your bench for a bye week. WR Marvin Harrison has been really hot of late and is a must start. WR Reggie Wayne has had a great season and is a must start. TE Dallas Clark may return to the lineup this week, but Iíd stay away this week. RB Joseph Addai will have a decent game.

Atlanta Falcons (7-8)
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Philadelphia Eagles (9-6)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Michael Vick QB Jeff Garcia
Warrick Dunn RB Brian Westbrook
Justin Griffith RB Correll Buckhalter
Michael Jenkins WR Donte' Stallworth
Roddy White WR Reggie Brown
Alge Crumpler TE L.J. Smith
Atlanta Falcons DEF Philadelphia Eagles
QB Michael Vick is too unpredictable to start in the fantasy playoffs, and the Eagles defense has been pretty good, of late. Find a better option then Vick. RB Warrick Dunn has been a disappointment this season. When T.J. Duckett was traded that opened the door for Dunn to dominate, but he hasnít been able to hold up health-wise, and he never got the opportunities in the red-zone. TE Alge Crumpler is probably the only Atlanta passing option worth playing. QB Jeff Garcia will do a good job managing this game. His numbers will be good, but not great. All the passing weapons in Philly are worth a play. WR Donteí Stallworth and WR Reggie Brown have been great down the sidelines. TE L.J. Smith has quietly had a good year. RB Brian Westbrook has been great lately and is definitely a must start this week.

Arizona Cardinals (5-10)
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San Diego Chargers (13-2)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Kurt Warner QB Philip Rivers
Edgerrin James RB LaDainian Tomlinson
Marcel Shipp RB Michael Turner
Anquan Boldin WR Keenan McCardell
Larry Fitzgerald WR Vincent Jackson
Leonard Pope TE Antonio Gates
Arizona Cardinals DEF San Diego Chargers
With QB Matt Leinart hurt, QB Kurt Warner will step back in as the starter. The last game Warner started against the Chargers he had a perfect QB rating. Donít expect a repeat performance. When Warner starts you can bet heíll give away at least one fumble. He is comfortable with WR Anquan Boldin and WR Larry Fitzgerald, and both are good plays. RB Edgerrin James has been decent the last couple weeks, but his season, as a whole, has been a disappointment. Donít expect much this week against the Chargers. QB Philip Rivers has struggled the last couple of games, but he still led the Chargers to wins. Heíll have a good game this week. WR Vincent Jackson has turned into his best wideout option. TE Antonio Gates is always a good play. If the Chargers get an early lead expect to see a lot more RB Michael Turner and a lot less RB LaDainian Tomlinson. LT will get the start and the early carries though.

Green Bay Packers (7-8)
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Chicago Bears (13-2)
Fantasy Rating Player Pos Player Fantasy Rating
Brett Favre QB Rex Grossman
Ahman Green RB Thomas Jones
Vernand Morency RB Cedric Benson
Donald Driver WR Muhsin Muhammad
Greg Jennings WR Bernard Berrian
Bubba Franks TE Desmond Clark
Green Bay Packers DEF Chicago Bears
QB Brett Favre has struggled lately and has struggled against the Bears, the last couple of seasons. Heíll have to wait until next year to set the all-time passing TD record, but there is an outside chance he sets the all-time most INTs thrown record. He would need to complete 5 passes to Bears defenders to do that, unlikely, but heís done it before. RB Ahman Green had a good week against the Bears to start the season, but itíll be tough to do that again. The Bears have been good against the run in the last couple of weeks. WR Donald Driver is a must play against a banged up pass defense. The Bears donít have anything to play for other than pride, having locked up everything a couple weeks ago. QB Rex Grossman will play, but not the whole game. Stay away from all Bears starters. This includes WR Muhsin Muhammad, RB Thomas Jones, and TE Desmond Clark. RB Cedric Benson will get the bulk of the load and could be a good play.


FANTASY FOOTBALL PLAYER ANALYSIS AND NFL GAME MATCHUP SUMMARIES!

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