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News-Herald Assistant Sports Editor Kevin Kleps doesn’t just write headlines and stories. He also checks on his fantasy sports teams. A lot. See if the moves and news from the world of sports affect your fantasy teams.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Fantasy football: Injury updates, start-and-sit advice and expanded playlist for Week 10

The injury dilemma of the week goes to Panthers running back DeAngelo Williams, who will be a game-time decision because of a knee ailment.

The excuse of the week goes to Bills receiver Terrell Owens, who is listed as questionable because of a strained hip -- the result of taking a nap on his couch Monday night. No word on whether or not Tony Romo was kicking him in his sleep.

On to the injury roundup:

-- Williams is a must-start if he's active, but expect backup Jonathan Stewart to get a decent share of the carries. Both are good plays against the Falcons' 24th-ranked run defense.

-- Owens is expected to play, as is Cardinals wideout Anquan Boldin, who sat out last week because of a sprained ankle.

-- Eagles running back Brian Westbrook should return Sunday from a concussion, but he's a low-level No. 2 running back at best. Impressive rookie LeSean McCoy could get more carries against the Chargers' 26th-ranked run defense.

-- LaDainian Tomlinson is expected to play through a hip injury, and Redskins running back Ladell Betts, who has a sprained ankle, should start for the injured Clinton Portis. Betts likely will split carries with Rock Cartwright and Quinton Ganther and is no better than a flex play.

-- Raiders running back Darren McFadden should return from a knee injury, but teammate Justin Fargas has established himself as the No. 1 back. Both are No. 3 running backs against the Chiefs, who rank 28th vs. the run.

Five to start

This week’s look at part-time starters and fantasy backups who should benefit from a favorable matchup:

-- Laurence Maroney, RB, Patriots, at Colts: He’s rushed for a touchdown in each of his last three games, a span in which he’s carried 49 times for 248 yards (5.1 per attempt). The Colts have allowed six rushing TDs.

-- Knowshon Moreno, RB, Broncos, at Redskins: He’s been so unproductive in the last three games (33 carries for 86 yards and one TD, along with minus-5 yards receiving) that he’s no longer a regular starter. But I’d give the rookie another chance against the league’s 25th-ranked run defense.

-- Jonathan Stewart, RB, Panthers, vs. Falcons: The second-year back has scored four touchdowns in his last five games and would get a lot of work if DeAngelo Williams doesn't play because of a knee injury. The Falcons rank 24th vs. the run and have given up six TDs on the ground.

-- Percy Harvin and Sidney Rice, WRs, Vikings, vs. Lions: Detroit is the league’s second-worst defense against the pass, and the Lions have allowed the second-most TD tosses (19). Harvin had five receptions for 84 yards and a TD in his last game, and Rice has 20 catches for 352 yards in his last three.

More matchups I like:

Matt Hasselbeck, QB, Seahawks, at Cardinals; Mark Sanchez, QB, Jets, at Jaguars; Matt Cassel, QB, Chiefs, at Raiders; Jamaal Charles, RB, Chiefs, at Raiders; LeSean McCoy, RB, Eagles, at Chargers; Marshawn Lynch, RB, Bills, at Titans; Mike Bell, RB, Saints, at Rams

Three to sit

If you have a decent backup, these starters should take a seat for a week:

-- Carson Palmer, QB, Bengals, at Steelers: It’s difficult to bench a quarterback on pace for 3,664 yards and 28 touchdowns, but five of Palmer’s 14 TDs were in one game, and the Steelers have only one fewer interception (eight) than TD passes allowed (nine).

-- Brian Westbrook, RB, Eagles, at Chargers: He is expected to return from a concussion, but now is being bothered by an old ankle injury. Factor in his five-game totals of two touchdowns and 327 total yards, and you should look elsewhere, even vs. the league’s No. 26 run defense.

-- Any Raiders running back vs. the Chiefs: Justin Fargas has been effective in his last three games (49 carries for 213 yards, one TD rushing, seven catches for 54 yards), but Darren McFadden is expected to play for the first time since Week 4. Seems like another backfield split to avoid.

More matchups I don’t like:

Donovan McNabb, QB, Eagles, at Chargers; Kyle Orton, QB, Broncos, at Redskins; Julius Jones, RB, Seahawks, at Cardinals; Kevin Smith, RB, Lions, at Vikings; Jamal Lewis, RB, Browns, vs. Ravens

Last week

The start list had only one hit in Julius Jones (36 yards and one TD on the ground, six catches for 78 yards). Donovan McNabb (227 yards passing, one TD, two interceptions), Joe Flacco (195 yards passing, two picks), Michael Crabtree (three catches for 30 yards) and Jamaal Charles (six carries for 36 yards and three catches for 19 yards) were all duds.

The sit list was 2-for-3, with Jay Cutler (369 yards passing, three touchdowns and one interception) as the bad call. Benching Knowshon Moreno (five carries for 3 yards) and Kevin Smith (67 yards rushing, two receptions for 9 yards) was the right call.


1. Drew Brees, Saints, at Rams (tied for No. 22 vs. the pass)
2. Brett Favre, Vikings, vs. Lions (No. 31)
3. Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers, vs. Bengals (No. 25)
4. Aaron Rodgers, Packers, vs. Cowboys (No. 20)
5. Peyton Manning, Colts, vs. Patriots (No. 4)
6. Tom Brady, Patriots, at Colts (No. 9)
7. Philip Rivers, Chargers, vs. Eagles (No. 11)
8. Joe Flacco, Ravens, at Browns (tied for No. 22)
9. Tony Romo, Cowboys, at Packers (No. 8)
10. Kurt Warner, Cardinals, vs. Seahawks (No. 17)
11. Matt Ryan, Falcons, at Panthers (No. 6)
12. Donovan McNabb, Eagles, at Chargers (No. 5)
13. Matt Hasselbeck, Seahawks, at Cardinals (No. 29)
14. Carson Palmer, Bengals, at Steelers (No. 14)
15. Matt Cassel, Chiefs, at Raiders (No. 13)
16. Mark Sanchez, Jets, vs. Jaguars (No. 26)
17. David Garrard, Jaguars, at Jets (No. 2)
18. Kyle Orton, Broncos, at Redskins (No. 1)
19. Chad Henne, Dolphins, vs. Buccaneers (No. 15)
20. Vince Young, Titans, vs. Bills (No. 10)

1. Adrian Peterson, Vikings, vs. Lions (No. 17 vs. the run)
2. Ray Rice, Ravens, at Browns (No. 31)
3. Chris Johnson, Titans, vs. Bills (No. 32)
4. Michael Turner, Falcons, at Panthers (No. 23)
5. Maurice Jones-Drew, Jaguars, at Jets (tied for No. 14)
6. Ronnie Brown, Dolphins, vs. Buccaneers (No. 30)
7. Thomas Jones, Jets, vs. Jaguars (No. 22)
8. Steven Jackson, Rams, vs. Saints (No. 19)
9. Pierre Thomas, Saints, at Rams (No. 27)
10. Cedric Benson, Bengals, at Steelers (No. 1)
11. Ryan Grant, Packers, vs. Cowboys (No. 12)
12. Joseph Addai, Colts, vs. Patriots (No. 20)
13. Rashard Mendenhall, Steelers, vs. Bengals (No. 2)
14. x-DeAngelo Williams, Panthers, vs. Falcons (No. 24)
15. Knowshon Moreno, Broncos, at Redskins (No. 25)
16. Marion Barber, Cowboys, at Packers (No. 9)
17. Laurence Maroney, Patriots, at Colts (tied for No. 14)
18. Jonathan Stewart, Panthers, vs. Falcons (No. 24)
19. Jamaal Charles, Chiefs, at Raiders (No. 29)
20. LaDainian Tomlinson, Chargers, vs. Eagles (No. 10)
21. Marshawn Lynch, Bills, at Titans (No. 18)
22. LeSean McCoy, Eagles, at Chargers (No. 26)
23. Mike Bell, Saints, at Rams (No. 27)
24. Tim Hightower, Cardinals, vs. Seahawks (No. 11)
x-Make sure Williams (knee injury) is active.

1. Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals, vs. Seahawks (No. 17 vs. the pass)
2. Randy Moss, Patriots, at Colts (No. 9)
3. Marques Colston, Saints, at Rams (tied for No. 22)
4. Reggie Wayne, Colts, vs. Patriots (No. 4)
5. Vincent Jackson, Chargers, vs. Eagles (No. 11)
6. Hines Ward, Steelers, vs. Bengals (No. 25)
7. Miles Austin, Cowboys, at Packers (No. 8)
8. Donald Driver, Packers, vs. Cowboys (No. 20)
9. Wes Welker, Patriots, at Colts (No. 9)
10. Chad Ochocinco, Bengals, at Steelers (No. 14)
11. Roddy White, Falcons, at Panthers (No. 6)
12. Brandon Marshall, Broncos, at Redskins (No. 1)
13. DeSean Jackson, Eagles, at Chargers (No. 5)
14. Nate Burleson, Seahawks, at Cardinals (No. 29)
15. Greg Jennings, Packers, vs. Cowboys (No. 20)
16. Derrick Mason, Ravens, at Browns (tied for No. 22)
17. Anquan Boldin, Cardinals, vs. Seahawks (No. 17)
18. Mike Sims-Walker, Jaguars, at Jets (No. 2)
19. Calvin Johnson, Lions, at Vikings (No. 21)
20. Santonio Holmes, Steelers, vs. Bengals (No. 25)
21. T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Seahawks, at Cardinals (No. 29)
22. Sidney Rice, Vikings, vs. Lions (No. 31)
23. Dwayne Bowe, Chiefs, at Raiders (No. 13)
24. Percy Harvin, Vikings, vs. Lions (No. 31)
25. Braylon Edwards, Jets, vs. Jaguars (No. 26)
26. Santana Moss, Redskins, vs. Broncos (No. 7)
27. Jerricho Cotchery, Jets, vs. Jaguars (No. 26)
28. Torry Holt, Jaguars, at Jets (No. 2)
29. Mike Wallace, Steelers, vs. Bengals (No. 25)
30. Terrell Owens, Bills, vs. Titans (No. 32)
31. Laveranues Coles, Bengals, at Steelers (No. 14)
32. Jeremy Maclin, Eagles, at Chargers (No. 5)
33. Pierre Garcon, Colts, vs. Patriots (No. 4)
34. Steve Breaston, Cardinals, vs. Seahawks (No. 17)
35. Eddie Royal, Broncos, at Redskins (No. 1)
36. Devery Henderson, Saints, at Rams (tied for No. 22)

MORE FANTASY FOOTBALL: In a season full of fantasy disappointments, we break down the top 10 busts of the year here. The link also includes this week’s audiocast, in which Sports Editor Mark Podolski and I give our top five value picks and busts of the first nine weeks.

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