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All our week 3 content

Week 3 Upgrades, Downgrades, and Waiver Wire Wonders

by Clayton Gray, Jeff Haseley, Jeff Pasquino, Jeff Tefertiller, and Maurile Tremblay, Exclusive to Footballguys.com


Quarterback

Upgrade

  1. QB Jay Cutler, DEN
  2. QB Philip Rivers, SD
  3. QB Kurt Warner, ARI
  4. QB Aaron Rodgers, GB
  5. QB Eli Manning, NYG
  6. QB J.T. OSullivan, SF
  7. QB Jake Delhomme, CAR
  8. QB Jason Campbell, WAS
  9. QB Jon Kitna, DET
  10. QB Kerry Collins, TEN *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  11. QB Brian Griese, TB *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  12. QB Tyler Thigpen, KC *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***

Downgrade

  1. QB Tarvaris Jackson, MIN
  2. QB Carson Palmer, CIN
  3. QB Matt Hasselbeck, SEA
  4. QB David Garrard, JAX
  5. QB JaMarcus Russell, OAK
  6. QB Vince Young, TEN
  7. QB Jeff Garcia, TB
  8. QB Seneca Wallace, SEA
  9. QB Matt Ryan, ATL

Holding steady

  1. QB Derek Anderson, CLE
  2. QB Peyton Manning, IND
  3. QB Ben Roethlisberger, PIT
  4. QB Drew Brees, NO


Running Back

Upgrade

  1. RB Matt Forte, CHI
  2. RB Willie Parker, PIT
  3. RB Clinton Portis, WAS
  4. RB Darren McFadden, OAK
  5. RB Julius Jones, SEA
  6. RB Chris Johnson, TEN
  7. RB Earnest Graham, TB
  8. RB LaMont Jordan, NE *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  9. RB Brandon Jackson, GB
  10. RB Michael Bush, OAK *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  11. RB Darren Sproles, SD *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  12. RB Chris Perry, CIN
  13. RB Fred Jackson, BUF *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  14. RB Michael Pittman, DEN *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  15. RB Ahmad Bradshaw, NYG *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  16. RB T.J. Duckett, SEA *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  17. RB Jerome Harrison, CLE *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***

Downgrade

  1. RB LaDainian Tomlinson, SD
  2. RB Larry Johnson, KC
  3. RB Ryan Grant, GB
  4. RB Laurence Maroney, NE
  5. RB Deuce McAllister, NO
  6. RB Ricky Williams, MIA
  7. RB Justin Fargas, OAK
  8. RB Chester Taylor, MIN
  9. RB Jamal Lewis, CLE
  10. RB Maurice Jones-Drew, JAX
  11. RB Joseph Addai, IND
  12. RB Fred Taylor, JAX
  13. RB Andre Hall, DEN
  14. RB Selvin Young, DEN

Holding steady

  1. RB Sammy Morris, NE
  2. RB Jonathan Stewart, CAR
  3. RB DeAngelo Williams, CAR
  4. RB Warrick Dunn, TB
  5. RB Reggie Bush, NO
  6. RB Michael Turner, ATL
  7. RB Steven Jackson, STL


Wide Receiver

Upgrade

  1. WR Brandon Marshall, DEN
  2. WR Calvin Johnson, DET
  3. WR Plaxico Burress, NYG
  4. WR Greg Jennings, GB
  5. WR Santana Moss, WAS
  6. WR Steve Smith, CAR
  7. WR Lee Evans, BUF
  8. WR Santonio Holmes, PIT
  9. WR DeSean Jackson, PHI
  10. WR Justin Gage, TEN *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  11. WR Bryant Johnson, SF *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  12. WR James Jones, GB *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  13. WR Anquan Boldin, ARI
  14. WR Anthony Gonzalez, IND
  15. WR David Patten, NO *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  16. WR Chansi Stuckey, NYJ *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  17. WR Greg Camarillo, MIA *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  18. WR Ike Hilliard, TB *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  19. WR Isaac Bruce, SF *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  20. WR Ashley Lelie, OAK *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  21. WR Amani Toomer, NYG *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  22. WR James Hardy, BUF *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***

Downgrade

  1. WR Marques Colston, NO
  2. WR Logan Payne, SEA
  3. WR Sidney Rice, MIN
  4. WR Ted Ginn, MIA
  5. WR Devin Hester, CHI
  6. WR Jabar Gaffney, NE
  7. WR Roy Williams, DET
  8. WR D.J. Hackett, CAR
  9. WR Chad Johnson, CIN
  10. WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh, CIN
  11. WR Joey Galloway, TB
  12. WR Roddy White, ATL
  13. WR Steve Smith, NYG
  14. WR Randy Moss, NE
  15. WR Marvin Harrison, IND

Holding steady

  1. WR Bernard Berrian, MIN
  2. WR Jerricho Cotchery, NYJ
  3. WR Brandon Lloyd, CHI
  4. WR Braylon Edwards, CLE
  5. WR Muhsin Muhammad, CAR
  6. WR Torry Holt, STL
  7. WR Dwayne Bowe, KC


Tight End

Upgrade

  1. TE Tony Scheffler, DEN
  2. TE John Carlson, SEA *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM ***
  3. TE Chris Cooley, WAS

Downgrade

  1. TE Ben Utecht, CIN
  2. TE Kevin Boss, NYG
  3. TE Ben Watson, NE
  4. TE Greg Olsen, CHI
  5. TE L.J. Smith, PHI
  6. TE Alge Crumpler, TEN
  7. TE Dante Rosario, CAR
  8. TE Nate Jackson, DEN
  9. TE Dallas Clark, IND

Holding steady

  1. TE Jeremy Shockey, NO
  2. TE Tony Gonzalez, KC


Kicker

Upgrade

  1. PK Ryan Longwell, MIN
  2. PK David Akers, PHI
  3. PK John Kasay, CAR
  4. PK John Carney, NYG
  5. PK Jason Elam, ATL

Downgrade

  1. PK Shayne Graham, CIN

Holding steady


Team Defense

Upgrade

  1. TD Chicago Bears, CHI
  2. TD Green Bay Packers, GB
  3. TD New York Giants, NYG

Downgrade

  1. TD San Diego Chargers, SD
  2. TD Denver Broncos, DEN
  3. TD Detroit Lions, DET

Holding steady

  1. TD Pittsburgh Steelers, PIT


Quarterback

Upgrade

QB Jason Campbell, WAS - Campbell exploded in Week 2 against New Orleans for 321 yards and a touchdown, completing two-thirds (24 of 36) of his throws for the day. The Saints' secondary was decimated by injuries, but he still looked good. Campbell played with poise and got the ball in the hands of his best two playmakers: Santana Moss and Chris Cooley. The Redskins play Arizona next week and it could be a shootout if both offenses are clicking.

QB Kerry Collins, TEN - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - Upgrade to Collins here simply because it looks like he'll be starting for the Titans for at least a month, maybe more. Collins replaces an injured Vince Young, but he could see extended time as the starting Titans QB due to Young's uncertain situation regarding his most recent lapse in his own mental health. Another reason to upgrade Collins is because of his next two opponents - at home vs. HOU and MIN (who is still proving to be weak defending the pass).

QB Jay Cutler, DEN - Cutler was 36 of 50 on Sunday for 350 yards and four touchdowns. The Broncos relied on the passing game all day long, and Cutler made good use of his numerous skilled receivers. Opposing defense simply lack the manpower to cover Brandon Marshall, Eddie Royal, Tony Scheffler, and Brandon Stokley. And Even Daniel Graham makes for a nice solid underneath option. If the Broncos continue to emphasize the pass over the run, Cutler should continue to put up terrific fantasy stats.

QB Jake Delhomme, CAR - Delhomme may have had a subpar game this past week in a win against the Bears, but this upgrade is because he gets Steve Smith back after being suspended for the first two games. Not only will he have Smith back, but the Panthers will have a favorable passing match up at Minnesota. The Vikings allowed over 300 yards to Peyton Manning this past week, plus last year they were 32nd in the league against the pass.

QB Brian Griese, TB - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - It looks as if Brian Griese is in and Jeff Garcia is out. HC Jon Gruden has a history of making quick changes, especially with his QB. Until further notice, it looks like Griese will be starting, even though an official announcement has yet to be made. This past week, Griese was very conservative and didn't make any key mistakes. We don't see Griese being a juggernaut fantasy QB, but if you're in a deep league or a two-QB league, the good news is it looks like he'll continue to be the Bucs starter.

QB Jon Kitna, DET - This is a cautious upgrade after Kitna had his second good fantasy game in a row. It seems as though the Lion defense will have Kitna playing from behind all year. For two straight weeks, Kitna threw for two scores and eclipsed 250 passing yards. Against the Packers, the veteran passer completed 21 of 41 passes for 276 yards, two touchdowns and three picks. Yeah - those three INTs are the reasons we're cautious. If the losses and turnovers pile up, the Lions could possibly look to the future and send Kitna to the bench.

QB Eli Manning, NYG - Okay, it was against the Rams, but you still have to respect the performance - three touchdowns, 20-29-260 and zero turnovers. Clearly Eli is building on his Super Bowl postseason from last year and is on his way to great numbers at this pace. Did we happen to mention that he plays Cincinnati next week? Another must start.

QB J.T. OSullivan, SF - O'Sullivan seems to be getting the hang of the Mike Martz offense. He connected with WRs Isaac Bruce and Bryant Johnson on a number of big plays on Sunday, ending the day with 321 passing yards (plus 32 rushing yards) and a touchdown. In this offense, O'Sullivan could break the 300-yard barrier in numerous games this season.

QB Philip Rivers, SD - With LaDainian Tomlinson hobbled by a toe injury, the Chargers relied on the passing game to move the ball, and Rivers responded with an outstanding performance. He threw for 377 yards and 3 TDs on 33 pass attempts. We could be seeing the transition from a Tomlinson-centered offense to a Rivers-centered offense in San Diego.

QB Aaron Rodgers, GB - has now had two straight good games to start the season. He has yet to throw an interception, but lost a fumble in week two. Against the Lions, Brett Favre's former backup tallied 328 passing yards and three touchdowns. He completed 24 of 38 passes and looked great against the porous Lion defense. Rodgers added 25 more yards on four carries.

QB Tyler Thigpen, KC - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - In leagues that start two QBs, Thigpen could be an option for desperate fantasy owners for a few weeks until Brodie Croyle returns to the lineup. Damon Huard, normally the Chiefs' backup to Croyle, suffered a head injury on Sunday, and even if he is available next week, the Chiefs may decide to go with the younger Thigpen.

QB Kurt Warner, ARI - Warner looked like the 1999-2001 version of himself on Sunday as he completed 19 of 24 passes for 361 yards and 3 touchdowns. He's got the best WR duo in the league in Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin, and the Cardinals' passing offense should continue to make plays throughout the season.

Downgrade

QB Jeff Garcia, TB - Jeff Garcia is the odd man out in Tampa Bay right now thanks to HC Jon Gruden's decision to bench him and go with Brian Griese at QB. The Bucs won their first game with Griese under center, so it looks like that situation will remain the same, at least for now. There have been trade rumors surrounding Garcia, so he may still have some value. If you have the room on your bench, stash him away for when he is called upon, whether that will be with Tampa or another team that may inquire about his services.

QB David Garrard, JAX - Many fantasy owners drafted Garrard hoping he'd rise to the next level and possibly be a top 10 QB this season. In the first two weeks, he's been anything but. The Jaguars are 0-2 and Garrard has 3 INTs with only 1 TD pass. Looking ahead at their schedule, the Jaguars could be 1-5 heading into their week 7 bye. (@IND, HOU, PIT, @DEN). The Jaguars offensive line is depleted due to injuries and it is hurting his passing game (sacked nine times in his first two games). If you have a better option, consider benching Garrard until he strings together a few good games. Right now, it's not looking good for him or his team.

QB Matt Hasselbeck, SEA - The Seahawks' WR corps is depleted. Until Deion Branch and Bobby Engram return to the lineup, Hasselbeck should probably be benched in fantasy leagues that start just one QB. Even when Branch and Engram see the field, they may not be 100 percent. It could be a long season for Hasselbeck.

QB Tarvaris Jackson, MIN - underperformed against an average Indianapolis Colt defense. He completed just 14 of 24 passes for 130 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions. Plus, Jackson lost a fumble. Fantasy owners that relied upon the rushing of Jackson were disappointed with merely one yard on one carry. The young passer looked lost at times and the coaches might be pressured to make a change at the position.

QB Carson Palmer, CIN - Palmer played in a windy Paul Brown Stadium as the rest of Hurricane Ike passed through Cincinnati, but it is hard to give him another free pass after Week 1's poor display against Baltimore. With weapons like Chad Johnson and T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Palmer should be able to get in the 200 yard neighborhood most weeks with relative ease, yet the Titans stifled him once again this week. Palmer threw two picks, one of which was not his fault due to a tipped ball, but the other was a terribly underthrown fade to Houshmandzadeh in the red zone that should have been thrown much further and given the Bengals a touchdown chance. All that aside, the horrible play of the offensive line the biggest reason for the Palmer downgrade. He is pressured on almost every down.

QB JaMarcus Russell, OAK - It is clear that the Raiders' offense will be as run-oriented as they can make it. Russell attempted just 17 passes in a 23-8 win against Kansas City, after attempting just 26 passes in a 41-14 loss against Denver. It looks like Russell won't have many games with 30+ pass attempts.

QB Matt Ryan, ATL - We have now seen Matt Ryan at home and on the road and it appears as if he is much more comfortable at home. Ryan started the game at Tampa Bay 0 for his first nine attempts and finished 13 for 33 for 158 yards and 2 INTs (4.7 yards per attempt). Perhaps it's more than just home vs. road? Last week Ryan had the benefit of being in the lead early in the game, where he could comfortably make decisions and not have to rush passes and make quick decisions. Ryan still has a long way to go before he can be counted on as a fantasy producer. He has periods of greatness, but if he encounters a strong pass rush and finds himself behind, he may not yet have the ability to rise to the occasion under pressure. For that reason alone, temper your expectations with Ryan.

QB Seneca Wallace, SEA - You probably aren't relying upon Wallace, but he will miss the next three to four weeks with his strained calf.

QB Vince Young, TEN - While specific details surrounding Vince Young's recent bout with personal problems is sketchy, he still has an injured (sprained) knee. In his own words he exclaimed the injury is one that he has never had before. That itself doesn't sound too promising. Add in the fact that Titans HC Jeff Fisher has publicly stated that it may be long while before Young starts for the team again, and from a fantasy perspective, the torch has been passed to Kerry Collins until further notice. Right now it looks like "further notice" is nowhere in sight.

Holding steady

QB Derek Anderson, CLE - Anderson faced two foes in Week 2 -- the Pittsburgh Steelers and the remnants of Hurricane Ike. Cleveland had 50-60 MPH gusts during the game, making passing a challenge. The Steelers added plenty of pressure and forced two interceptions and two sacks. Anderson gets a pass for the week, but he needs to increase his production against Baltimore and Cincinnati in Weeks 3 and 4.

QB Drew Brees, NO - We really would like to upgrade Brees here, for reasons mentioned shortly, but he didn't exactly look like an all-pro in the loss to the Redskins this past week (216 yards, 1 TD, 2 INTs). Perhaps the loss of Marques Colston will have an effect on Brees or maybe the Skins just turned on the defense at the right time? Without seeing Brees against another opponent with Colston out of the lineup we don't have enough of a sample size to make an estimated guess on his production in the coming weeks. Now, why a possible upgrade? His next three games are favorable against the pass (@DEN, SF, MIN). While we're not sure if Brees will return to his 300-yard or 2-3 TD pass form without Colston, we like his next three match ups. If you own Brees, continue to start him and hope for the best.

QB Peyton Manning, IND - So far Peyton has not been his usual stellar self. He has only 2 TD passes to go along with 2 INTs in his first two games. However, he is still averaging a hefty 284 yards passing per game. That is still very pedestrian considering Manning's pedigree. If you're a Manning owner, consider putting him on the trade block. The Colts haven't exactly been electric so far this season, plus he has a week four bye coming up. Now would be a good time to unload him, especially if your back up QB, maybe Aaron Rodgers is really pouring it on. We expect Manning to eventually return to form, especially when his mainstay center Jeff Saturday returns. If there's someone willing to buy low on him, you may want to test the waters, as long as the trade would be beneficial to your team as a whole. Try targeting last year's Manning owner.

QB Ben Roethlisberger, PIT - Roethlisberger had an okay night (12-19-186-1-0) but remember that this was in Cleveland with 50-60 MPH gusting winds. Factor in Big Ben's right shoulder separation and it makes for a pretty good performance once you get past the raw numbers as he was able to throw the ball deep and with good velocity -- for now. He did take a pretty good shot on his shoulder again late in the Browns game. The Steelers go to Philadelphia for a battle of Pennsylvania next week and then face Baltimore and Jacksonville, so three rougher matchups loom for Roethlisberger.


Running Back

Upgrade

RB Ahmad Bradshaw, NYG - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - Bradshaw may technically be the third RB on the Giants' depth chart, but when you have a guy this explosive you have to give him touches. Bradshaw racked up two scores, one coming on a nice 18-yard reception; then he followed that one up with a 31-yard run late in the fourth to run up the score on the hapless Rams. Not every week will be a blowout, but Week 3 is against the Bengals. If you have room for him, pick him up.

RB Michael Bush, OAK - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - Bush got clean-up duty on Sunday and ran impressively. Despite a fumble that initially kept the Chiefs' hopes alive, Bush ran through the defense for 90 yards and a touchdown on his 16 carries. If Fargas misses a few games, or is limited, the Raiders will use a combination of McFadden and Bush to carry the offense.

RB T.J. Duckett, SEA - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - He's still nothing to get excited about, but Duckett gets an upgrade (especially in TD-only leagues) since he looks like he'll be the Seahawks' goal line back.

RB Matt Forte, CHI - had a good game on the heels of the big game Week 1 against the Colts. Last Sunday night's game against Indianapolis showcased the rookie's ability. Forte rushed 23 times for 92 yards, with a long of 18 yards. He added 21 more yards on three catches. What makes this a good game is that it came against the stout Carolina Panthers. Forte looks to be a decent fantasy RB2 going forward.

RB Earnest Graham, TB - HC Jon Gruden made it known that he wanted to get Earnest Graham more involved in the offense. This past week against Atlanta, Graham rushed 15 times for 116 yards including a 68-yd TD run and a 8-yard TD run on 3rd and goal that was called back due to an offensive holding penalty. In two games so far, Graham has 25 carries for 207 yards and 1 TD. That's 8.2 YPC! Next week the Bucs play at Chicago then home for Green Bay. Their schedule this year is nowhere near as favorable it was last year, so that may eventually wind up hampering Graham, but for now, he looks great and he's performing at a very high level. Ride him while he's hot. The Bucs appear to be a run-oriented team so even if Warrick Dunn continues to excel as well, it shouldn't effect Graham's production much if at all.

RB Jerome Harrison, CLE - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - While Harrison had just two touches in Week 2, his 23 yard reception was a thing of beauty. He made the entire Pittsburgh defense look several gears slower as he danced from sideline to sideline, racking up yards all the way. Should anything happen to Jamal Lewis the workload will go mostly to Harrison, who may even find work as a change of pace / third down running back. If you have Jamal Lewis already or have a deep bench, consider grabbing him.

RB Brandon Jackson, GB - showed a spark against a poor Lion defense. The former Nebraska star accumulated 61 yards on seven rushes and found the end zone. He added two more yards on a catch. If Grant's hamstring remains balky, Jackson could see more action going forward.

RB Fred Jackson, BUF - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - is the primary backup to Marshawn Lynch in Buffalo, and he will see carries in that role. But, the receiving ability of the former Coe star is outstanding. The Bills are just now starting to utilize Jackson's skill-set. Against the Jaguars in week two, Fred Jackson ran the ball six times for 17 yards. In addition, he totaled 83 receiving yards on seven receptions. Yes, that is 100 total yards on 13 touches. Fantasy owners in PPR leagues need to keep an eye on Jackson for the coming games. The Bills face the Raiders and Rams the next two weeks so there is a good deal of upside.

RB Chris Johnson, TEN - Johnson again stayed fairly even with teammate LenDale White in terms of carries (19 for Johnson, 18 for White), but he managed to reach 100+ total yards for the second game in a row. That's not too bad for his first two games as a pro. This past week at Cincinnati was difficult to gauge due to the windy conditions on the field, but the good news is Johnson is becoming a mainstay player in the Titans offensive plans. Both he and LenDale White appear to have their own roles with the offense and both are producing. It is not a stretch to consider starting both RBs if you have them, when the match up is favorable. Next week the Titans host the Texans, a team that Steelers RB Willie Parker ran all over in week one.

RB Julius Jones, SEA - Jones was slated to split carries with Maurice Morris until Morris injured his knee in week one. With Morris expected to be sidelined until week five, Jones will get the bulk of the carries for at least the next few weeks. He ran very well on Sunday, gaining 127 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries. If he continues to be as productive, he could remain the featured back even after Morris returns.

RB LaMont Jordan, NE - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - was able to take advantage of the opportunity left by the Maroney injury and ineffectiveness of Sammy Morris. The former Raider ran hard and was impressive for a player deep on the depth chart. Jordan rushed 11 times for 62 yards with a long of 11 yards. Jordan could end up as the primary ball carrier if Maroney misses time.

RB Darren McFadden, OAK - Justin Fargas left Sunday's game in the second quarter with a groin injury. At the time of the injury, Fargas had nine carries to McFadden's three. But with Fargas out, McFadden was cut loose: he finished with 164 yards and a touchdown on his 21 carries. Fargas' injury may linger for a few weeks, and if McFadden keeps performing like he did Sunday, he may retain the starting job even when Fargas returns. Of course, we'll watch McFadden's slight turf toe injury as well.

RB Willie Parker, PIT - Parker was a big chunk of the Steelers' offense in Week 2 against the Browns, racking up over 100 yards for the second week in a row. The weather was really bad for throwing the ball, so Cleveland knew the runs were coming yet still could not slow him down sufficiently. Three tough matchups are coming (at Philadelphia, Baltimore and Jacksonville) so huge games seem a bit unlikely, but he remains the feature back for Pittsburgh.

RB Chris Perry, CIN - Despite his fumbles, Perry gets an upgrade this week to go along with his first NFL touchdown. The Bengals gave Perry the ball as their feature back, carrying 21 of the 28 rushing plays for Cincinnati. His numbers were less than spectacular (21-64-1), but the Titans are a solid rushing defense and the windy conditions did not allow for much in the passing game. Look for Perry to continue to be the key running back for Cincinnati going forward.

RB Michael Pittman, DEN - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - You may have missed it among Jay Cutler's barrage of TDs and Ed Hochuli's blown calls, but Pittman scored again. He is the goal line back for a high-scoring team. That's the description of a stud RB in a TD-only league.

RB Clinton Portis, WAS - Portis erupted for two touchdowns and almost 100 total yards against the Saints in Week 2. After his open criticism for just about everyone but the janitor that works for the Redskins this week, Portis needed to step up his game and he delivered, running hard on his 21 carries and finishing twice in the end zone. The Redskins had a balanced attack with 300+ yards passing, so if that remains then Portis will have ample running room.

RB Darren Sproles, SD - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - With LaDainian Tomlinson in and out of the lineup Sunday due to a toe injury, Sproles entered the game and was dynamic. He was quicker and showed a better burst than the injured Tomlinson and finished with 125 yards and a touchdown from scrimmage (plus 190 yards and a touchdown on kick returns). If Tomlinson misses any games this season, Sproles would make for a nice fill-in.

Downgrade

RB Joseph Addai, IND - Addai owners can't be too happy, but we believe there is a light at the end of the tunnel. The Colts and Addai have faced some stiff run defenses so far in Chicago and Minnesota. Once the Colts iron out their struggles, i.e Peyton Manning returns to form, center Jeff Saturday returns and the schedule gets easier, we think Joseph Addai will regain his form. As long as the Colts offense is producing, Addai will have value. However, things aren't all roses for Addai and Colts. It's becoming apparent that the team chemistry isn't in sync. That plus the presence of Dominic Rhodes is going to keep Addai from being an elite fantasy back.

RB Justin Fargas, OAK - Fargas was playing fairly well against the Chiefs when he suffered a groin injury. Early report indicate a torn groin, but the severity of the injury has not been discussed by team officials. With the way Darren McFadden and Michael Bush performed, look for even a healthy Fargas to see a decrease in touches.

RB Ryan Grant, GB - could not play much or effectively in week two. He had 15 carries for 20 yards. Grant did not play late in the game, even when the contest was in doubt. This is a situation to monitor. Brandon Jackson was effective Sunday while Grant was not. Think about it this way - Grant could only get minimal production against the team that yielded a ton to Michael Turner. The hamstring injury is clearly still bothering Grant, and starting him is risky until he becomes fully healthy.

RB Andre Hall, DEN - The Broncos are a passing team with a three-headed committee at running back. There simply isn't enough action for Hall to make a viable starting fantasy back.

RB Larry Johnson, KC - The Chiefs' offense is really bad. There's no threat of a passing game, so opposing defenses are loading up to stop the run, and the Chiefs' offensive line cannot overpower an NFL defensive front seven. Moreover, as the Chiefs get behind early, they will have to pass to catch up.

RB Maurice Jones-Drew, JAX - The Jaguars appear to be a very mediocre team in 2008. They are 0-2 to start the season, their offensive line is in disarray and the receiving corps is not meeting expectations, that weren't even that high to begin with. As a result, it's hard to picture the Jaguars as an impressive offense going forward, which greatly reduces the value of both Jones-Drew and Fred Taylor. Looking ahead at their schedule, the Jaguars could be 1-5 heading into their week 7 bye. (@IND, HOU, PIT, @DEN). Jones-Drew scored a TD on 7 carries for 17 yards against the Bills, so there is some value there, but with the offense struggling to find a groove, don't expect Jones-Drew to be a top fantasy producer week in and week out. His reception totals may increase some, but look for his rushing totals to be mediocre for the most part.

RB Jamal Lewis, CLE - Lewis was the feature back for the Browns once again, but it was tough to evaluate just where he stands on a night where not just the defense but also the weather is squaring off against the offense. Cleveland experienced 50-60 MPH winds during the game, making passing tough to accomplish, so Pittsburgh focused on stuffing the run first and foremost. Lewis had just 19-38 on the ground and 3-28 receiving, so the challenges will come over the next two weeks as he faces his former team next week in Baltimore before the Bengals come to Cleveland in Week 4.

RB Laurence Maroney, NE - left the game against the Jets with a shoulder injury. It is yet unknown the severity of the injury, but is a situation to monitor. He carried the ball eight times for 16 yards on the game and added no receptions. The Patriots spread the carries out which lowers fantasy production. Any injury that further limits fantasy performance is concerning. Plus, Maroney does have a lengthy injury history.

RB Deuce McAllister, NO - Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas appear to have the upper hand in the Saints RB pecking order. Unless something happens to one of those backs, McAllister looks to have very minimal value going forward. Even then, the Saints still have veteran Aaron Stecker available to fill in as well.

RB Chester Taylor, MIN - was thought to be the third down back, getting regular carries spelling Adrian Peterson. Well, in week two, Taylor tallied only 18 yards on four carries. He added one catch for negative two yards. While he is the handcuff for Peterson, it looks unlikely that Chester Taylor will be a Top 20 back without an injury to the superstar.

RB Fred Taylor, JAX - As mentioned above regarding Maurice Jones-Drew, the Jaguars offense is struggling and that means less production from the RBs, including Fred Taylor. Jones-Drew at least has his reception totals to keep him somewhat afloat in terms of having fantasy value, but Fred Taylor needs to rely on his rushing skills to give him value. Keep Taylor stashed away in the event the Jaguars find their offensive groove, but until then, Taylor doesn't pose a threat as a consistent fantasy producer week in and week out.

RB LaDainian Tomlinson, SD - The concern here is that the toe injury he suffered in week one, and aggravated in week two, could linger. Tomlinson was not himself on Sunday, as he appeared to lack his normal burst through the line of scrimmage.

RB Ricky Williams, MIA - Williams has only 52 yards on the season and simply isn't getting the job done. Early in the season was supposed to be the team when Williams could put some distance between himself and the still-hobbled Ronnie Brown, but Williams has failed to do so. Once (if?) Brown is healthy this season, look for Williams to fade even more. Even if Williams sticks as the starter, the Dolphins spend so much time far behind their opponent that they can't utilize the running game as much as they would like.

RB Selvin Young, DEN - Young might be the most effective Denver back between the 20s, but he's still not getting enough touches to be a nice option as your starting fantasy back. The Broncos are a passing team, and Michael Pittman gets the goalline looks. The leaves Young to fight with Andre Hall over the handful of carries in the middle of the field. There just isn't enough there.

Holding steady

RB Reggie Bush, NO - Bush didn't exactly have a strong game in week two (10 carries for 28 yards, 7 rec for 63 yds) and we mentioned last week that Bush is an inconsistent fantasy scorer. In PPR leagues, he is much more consistent, because his receiving totals will likely always be strong. The Saints play @DEN and then SF at home in their next two games. These are favorable rushing match ups and Bush should produce solid numbers. Continue to start him with confidence.

RB Warrick Dunn, TB - The Bucs appear to have more of a run-oriented offensive style now that Brian Griese is under center. We expect the Bucs to use their strong ground game led by Earnest Graham and Warrick Dunn as their main offensive game plan. In this offense, both Earnest Graham and Warrick Dunn can be effective. Case in point this past week where Graham rushed for 116 yards and a TD, while Dunn added 70 total yards of his own, including a 17-yd TD run. When the match up is favorable, Warrick Dunn could be a good start for your roster. The only problem is, that may be the case only 3-4 times this season and this past week was one of them. We expect Earnest Graham to get more and more carries going forward, so don't rely upon Dunn as a mainstay on your starting roster.

RB Steven Jackson, STL - The Rams have been blown out by the Eagles and Giants so far this year, but their schedule will get easier. If they can stay competitive in a game, Jackson should get 25+ touches and 100+ yards from scrimmage. He particularly retains value in PPR leagues, as Bulger looks to his safety valve often.

RB Sammy Morris, NE - Morris was the obvious backup to Maroney in week one. When Maroney injured his shoulder this week, it was Morris who got the first look, but he did not do well with those carries. Morris ran the ball eight times for zero yards, but got a score. He added seven more yards on two receptions. If Maroney misses time, Morris will see his touches go up, but he'll have to do more with those touches than he did on Sunday.

RB Jonathan Stewart, CAR - Last week it was DeAngelo Williams getting top billing as the Panthers leading RB. This week it was the rookie Jonathan Stewart. Stewart's 77 rushing yards (76 of those in the 2nd half) and two TDs was one of the reasons why the Panthers came back to beat the visiting Bears this past week. It looks like the Panthers are utilizing both backs effectively, riding the hotter back when the defense dictates such. The reason why Stewart is not an upgrade is due to the tough match up they'll face next week at Minnesota. Look for the Panthers to stretch the field next week against the Vikings in part due to WR Steve Smith's return from suspension, but also because the Vikings pass defense one of the worst in the league. We wouldn't be surprised if the more agile, DeAngelo Williams is the better back next week.

RB Michael Turner, ATL - Turner most likely had his best game of the season in week one. It's clear that while Atlanta looked impressive in their home opener against Detroit, they still are a team with a lot to learn. As a result their offense will struggle at times this year, which means drives won't be sustained and rushing yards will be hard to come by. This past week Turner had only 14 carries for 42 yards against the Buccaneers. We expected Turner and the Falcons to come back to earth, but don't write him off just yet. He obviously has talent and can break the long one at any time, but if Atlanta finds themselves trailing more than they are ahead, it will be a more difficult task for Turner and the running game. Having said all of that, the Falcons have a very favorable rushing match up next week at home against the Chiefs who allowed the Raiders to run all over them to the tune of 300 yards rushing. Start Turner next week, the match up looks great, but looking ahead, the schedule isn't as friendly (@CAR, @GB, CHI, @PHI, @OAK).

RB DeAngelo Williams, CAR - The seesaw struggle of determining who the better Panthers RB is this year could be a season long battle. Week one the edge went to Williams, while week two Jonathan Stewart and his two TD runs catapulted him to the top of the pecking order. Stewart should see more goal line carries than Williams and thus will likely have more fantasy value going forward, but you never know when Williams will be called upon and when he is, he usually performs well. The Panthers are using each back based on what the defense is giving them. One week it might be Williams getting the majority of carries in a more quick strike, change of pace attack, while the next week they may look to more of a grind it out assault, which favors Stewart. Stewart should eventually distance himself from Williams in fantasy numbers due to his presence in goal line plays, but that doesn't mean Williams won't have any value. Don't expect it to be an easy decision. The best case fantasy scenario would be to own both backs and wait for an injury. Until then, we hope you're a good guesser.


Wide Receiver

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WR Anquan Boldin, ARI - A strong argument can be made to give Boldin "upgrade of the century" status, not only because he finished with 140 yards and 3 touchdowns -- a monster game -- but also because the Cardinals' passing game in general was so efficient. But despite Boldin's lofty stats, Sunday's game appeared to confirm that Fitzgerald is the Cardinals' top receiving option, as he had 11 targets to Boldin's six. Boldin was as productive as humanly possible on those six targets, but he will need to be targetd more often to finish the season as a top ten fantasy receiver.

WR Isaac Bruce, SF - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - We downgraded Bruce last week after he was invisible in the first game of the season. But Bruce bounced back with several long receptions in week two, showing that he can still get downfield despite his age.

WR Plaxico Burress, NYG - Burress did exactly what elite WRs are supposed to do -- catch plenty of passes and score. Burress posted 81 yards on five catches and a touchdown in Week 2 and leads the team in targets (19), receptions (15) and receiving yards (214) on the season. Even more enticing is that he faces off against a bad Bengals team in Week3.

WR Greg Camarillo, MIA - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - impressed late in the 2007 season and has carried that over to 2008. The former Stanford Cardinal offers reliable routes and hands. In week one, he had three catches for 37 yards. He followed that up with four catches for 49 yards in week two. Camarillo is a player to monitor as the season progresses while Chad Pennington gets a better feel for his receivers. The Wes Welker clone could be an option now in deeper leagues.

WR Lee Evans, BUF - displayed his playmaking ability for the second straight week as he caught four balls just like in week one. On those catches, the former Wisconsin star accumulated 77 receiving yards. This gives him 179 in two weeks. The only concern is that Evans has not found the end zone. But, the strong yardage numbers are encouraging.

WR Justin Gage, TEN - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - Gage looks to be the WR of choice for new Titans QB Kerry Collins. In windy conditions in Cincinnati, Gage had five catches for 59 yards and a TD to lead the team in receptions against the Bengals. Collins is a much better down field passer than Vince Young and he will surely benefit, especially when the weather is more favorable. The Titans don't have a go-to receiver per se, but Justin Gage looks to be the one who will be occupying that role. The Titans are home vs. HOU and then MIN in their next two games. Gage is a great play as a WR3 or flex start.

WR Anthony Gonzalez, IND - Gonzalez was a major contributor in the Colts offense this past week against the Vikings. He had 9 receptions for 137 yards, while a supposedly healthy Marvin Harrison contributed only one catch for 16 yards. If Harrison continues to slide, Gonzalez will surely benefit. Perhaps Gonzalez was the main substitute for a missing Dallas Clark, he still was targeted often by Peyton Manning and that reliability won't be forgotten by Manning in future games. Gonzalez now has 14 catches in two games. You drafted him to hopefully break out as a WR to rely on every week. He is doing exactly that. Start him if you've got him.

WR James Hardy, BUF - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - caught two balls for 12 yards, including a 7-yard scoring grab in the back corner of the end zone. The Bills seem to recognize the size matchup they have with Hardy in the lineup near the goal line. These were the first two catches of the former Hoosier's career.

WR Ike Hilliard, TB - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - Veteran Ike Hilliard appears to have a little something left in the tank. Hilliard has 10 catches for 86 yards and a TD so far this year. The Bucs don't have a true WR identity. Joey Galloway supposedly occupies that role, but he has declined in nearly every major category in each of the last three seasons. Hilliard, on the other hand has shown consistency, especially in PPR leagues. Consider Hilliard as a potential flex play in bye week situations.

WR Santonio Holmes, PIT - Holmes had fantasy owners worried after a weak Week 1 performance, but he stepped it up against Cleveland in Week 2. Holmes had five catches for 94 yards on a very windy night but did not find his way into the end zone. The weather made the passing game very challenging, but the future looks perfectly fine for Holmes.

WR DeSean Jackson, PHI - With Kevin Curtis and Reggie Brown out, the Eagles were desperate for WR help. Jackson has answered the call and provides Donovan McNabb with an excellent down-the-field target. McNabb is buying time in the pocket and Jackson is creating separation deep - that's a excellent combo for fantasy owners. Now, if the rookie would just hold on to the ball past the goalline.

WR Greg Jennings, GB - had his second big game in a row. The only negative is that the young pass-catcher has not scored (especially considering he almost averaged one per game in 2007). But, after amassing 91 yards in week one, Jennings had 167 in week two. He has now caught eleven balls in just two games. With the strong play of Rodgers, Jennings should be a top tier receiver this season.

WR Bryant Johnson, SF - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - If the San Francisco offense continues to click, Bryant Johnson will be one of the main beneficiaries. He leads the team in targets with 12 and has their only receiving TD of the season.

WR Calvin Johnson, DET - caught six balls for 129 yards and two touchdowns in week two. This was after catching seven balls for 107 yards in week one. Jon Kitna looks to Johnson for the big play, and the second-year receiver looks every part of a Top 10 fantasy receiver. The poor defense puts the Lions offense in a spot to play from behind and needing to throw.

WR James Jones, GB - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - is now back from the injury sustained in preseason returned with a bang. Catching four Rodgers' passes for 29 yards and a score, Jones is now a legitimate spot starter to cover bye-weeks or injury issues and has a high ceiling if anything happened to Donald Driver or Greg Jennings.

WR Ashley Lelie, OAK - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - It's hard to get excited about anyone involved in the Raiders' passing game. But Lelie is an upgrade from barely an afterthought before the season started, to a candidate to lead the Raiders in receiving. Lelie led all Raiders with six targets on Sunday, and could end up leading the team in receiving this year. Yikes.

WR Brandon Marshall, DEN - Oh, Lord. Eighteen receptions (on 21 targets) in his 2008 debut. He was simply unstoppable. He abused CB Antonio Cromartie for most of the afternoon. Most of his catches came on quick slants and underneath routes, but there's no doubt that Marshall will be the focal point of the Broncos' offense this season.

WR Santana Moss, WAS - The Redskins quickly healed their ailing passing game, and Moss was the feature performer in Week 2 against New Orleans. Moss grabbed seven passes for 164 yards and a touchdown, accounting for over 50% of Washington's total passing yards. Look for Moss to be the primary target for Jason Campbell going forward.

WR David Patten, NO - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - Aside from Reggie Bush, David Patten was the primary receiving option for the Saints against the Redskins in the absence of Marques Colston, who is out at least four weeks after having surgery on his thumb. Patten had 5 catches for 55 yards and while that's not great production, he appears to be a common target for Drew Brees going forward, especially while Colston is out. The Saints have three favorable passing match ups in their next three games (@DEN, SF, MIN). Patten is a good play at WR3 or flex for each of the next three weeks.

WR Steve Smith, CAR - Smith returns from his team issued two-game suspension next week and the Panthers are 2-0 without him. He faces a Minnesota team that is one of the league's worst against the pass. The last time Smith played the Vikings he torched their secondary for 11 receptions for 201 yards and a TD. You've been waiting to start Smith since you drafted him. Start him if you've got him and don't look back. This is a great match up for him and the Panthers passing game.

WR Chansi Stuckey, NYJ - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - has now had a touchdown two straight weeks. Last week, the former Clemson star caught a jump ball on a broken play for a score. Against the Patriots, Stuckey caught four passes for 43 yards and the score. It seems as though he as emerged as the WR3 for the Jets. In addition, Brett Favre seems to like the youngster.

WR Amani Toomer, NYG - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - The old man still has some fight left in him, as you might be able to tell from his Week 2 against the Rams. Toomer put up nice numbers (6-67-1) and faces a great matchup against Cincinnati in Week 3. If you need WR help, here is a nice plug in wideout.

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WR Marques Colston, NO - Colston suffered a torn ligament in his left thumb in week one. He recently had surgery to reattach the ligament and is expected to be out for four to six weeks total.

WR Jabar Gaffney, NE - went without a reception once again for the second time in two weeks. It would be difficult to start him any given week.

WR Joey Galloway, TB - What a change from Week 1 for Galloway when he was easily the most targeted receiver in Tampa Bay. With Brian Griese under center, Galloway was targeted only 4 times (he had 13 in Week 1). Of course some of that can be attributed to the sprained foot. However, the sprain is even a bigger worry. After an injury-filled preseason, is this old receiver starting to fall apart?

WR Ted Ginn, MIA - has now only caught three passes for 26 yards through the first two games. His one-catch, nine-yard game against the Cardinals was disappointing once again. Ginn is not a receiver that should be on shallow rosters until he can display some sort of consistency.

WR D.J. Hackett, CAR - With the return of Steve Smith, Hackett will likely be the odd man out in two WR sets for Carolina. As a result he will see less time on the field and thus a lesser chance at consistent production. Muhsin Muhammad will likely inherit the WR2 role on the team leaving Hackett with the just a few targets per week.

WR Marvin Harrison, IND - In week two Harrison was not a big part of the offensive game plan, catching only one pass for 16 yards. Harrison clearly is in the twilight of his career and the torch could officially be passed to Anthony Gonzalez in the coming weeks, if it hasn't happened already. He may have a few occasional big plays this year, but Harrison is far from his consistent producing self of years past.

WR Devin Hester, CHI - Hester was carted off the field after only catching one six-yard pass against the Panthers. This follows a one-catch, seven-yard game in week one. Devin Hester is a great special teams player, but he is still learning how to be an effective receiver. The injury only compounds matters and keeps him from improving.

WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh, CIN - Houshmandzadeh had a similar game to Chad Johnson in Week 2. Three catches, 26 yards, not much else in the windy conditions. He did have a TD chance but Carson Palmer greatly underthrew him, as it would wind up in Courtland Finnegan's hands for an interception. Palmer simply hasn't had enough time in the pocket to find Houshmandzadeh with regularity.

WR Chad Johnson, CIN - As is a common theme in this report, the Cincinnati offense has been fairly anemic this season. The blame can be spread around to everyone on the field, but the offensive line has been dreadful. Carson Palmer is being harassed on almost every passing play. He simply can't get the ball to Johnson where the WR can make things happen.

WR Randy Moss, NE - It was expected that Cassel would be more likely to force the ball to Moss, but the WR had a rough game with only two catches for 22 yards (on a measly 3 targets). With Cassel only attempting 23 passes, Moss' ceiling is much lower than with Brady. Fantasy owners will see some inconsistent production from the stud receiver. Don't overreact to the Week 2 numbers, but having Cassel under center does in fact hurt Randy Moss.

WR Logan Payne, SEA - Payne was a nice sleeper this time last week, but the Seattle WR injury bug struck him on Sunday. He will miss the remainder of the season with a torn ACL.

WR Sidney Rice, MIN - was an aspiring young wideout coming into 2008. With the lack of proficiency from the quarterback position, the ceiling for Rice was not as high as expected. To make matters worse, the young receiver left the game with a leg injury (saying later that he felt his knee "pop"). He had zero catches for the game.

WR Steve Smith, NYG - There appears to be a little life still left in Amani Toomer. That leaves very little for Smith to work with (only six targets so far this season).

WR Roddy White, ATL - White has only six catches for 103 yards in two games this season. The Falcons no longer have Bobby Petrino's spread offense that resulted in 137 targets for White last year. It is looking like White will finish way behind his 2007 totals at this point. He may have a few good games in him as the Falcons primary WR threat, but his ceiling is nowhere near what it was last year. If you can get good value for him in a trade, do so, because it's not looking like White or any Falcons WR for that matter will finish in the top 20.

WR Roy Williams, DET - Williams only caught three of Kitna's 21 completions in week two. This was good for 48 yards. Yes, Williams makes the spectacular catch, but he also disappears at times. The more disturbing trend is that Shaun McDonald is seeing more targets than Williams (16 to 12 so far this season).

Holding steady

WR Bernard Berrian, MIN - We'd like to downgrade Berrian, but he'll become a larger part of the offense with Sidney Rice on the shelf. However, we can't upgrade him, as Berrian was held without a catch in the week two game against the Colts. Of course the poor performance of Tarvaris Jackson is the root of the problem here, but Berrian simply isn't making himself available like he should (only four targets in Week 2).

WR Dwayne Bowe, KC - Bowe's stat line from Sunday's game looks pretty good -- six catches for 90 yards -- but relying on any of the Chiefs' QBs to get him the ball consistently seems precarious.

WR Jerricho Cotchery, NYJ - only caught one pass for 20 yards against the Patriots. This comes on the heels of a three-catch, 80-yard week one. Teams are looking to stop the promising young receiver. Keep an eye on how Cotchery plays the next couple of weeks. He is a very good receiver and should improve as the rapport with Brett Favre increases.

WR Braylon Edwards, CLE - Edwards had just three catches in Week 2 for only 32 yards, but the conditions were poor for passing. Winds topped 50 MPH in Cleveland which limited how far the Browns could try and stretch the field. Edwards did drop at least two balls, a growing problem, but hold tight and judge him more critically against Baltimore and Cincinnati in the next two weeks.

WR Torry Holt, STL - The Rams have looked bad this season, but Holt is the primary weapon in the passing game, and the Rams will be playing from behind often. Holt had very good numbers on Sunday (76 yards and a touchdown), but it's hard to get overly excited until the Rams' offensive line starts blocking better and allowing the team to sustain drives.

WR Brandon Lloyd, CHI - Lloyd had a good game against the Panthers, but don't get too excited. He scored off a block punt early in the game, giving the Bears an early lead. In addition, the journeyman receiver caught five passes for 66 yards. This follows a two-catch, 26-yard performance in week one. As with all Bears receivers, Lloyd will find it difficult to put up good fantasy points each week.

WR Muhsin Muhammad, CAR - Muhammad didn't light the world on fire in his two weeks of being the primary WR option for Carolina in Steve Smith's absence. He has 11 receptions for 115 yards so far, but the Panthers haven't really been focusing on the passing game either. That could change next week against the Vikings with Smith's return. An increase in passes will benefit Muhammad. We still expect Muhammad to have 4-5 TDs this season. The match up next week is a favorable one at Minnesota. The Vikings will key on stopping Smith, thus opening up passes to both Muhammad and their TE corps of Dante Rosario and Jeff King. Muhammad is a sneaky play next week. Consider starting him as a WR3 or flex option.


Tight End

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TE John Carlson, SEA - *** POTENTIAL WAIVER WIRE GEM *** - With the Seahawks wide receivers so banged up, Hasselbeck needs somebody to throw to, and that somebody seems to be John Carlson. He has 10 receptions in two games so far, and should continue to play a significant role in the offense even when the wide receivers are healthier.

TE Chris Cooley, WAS - Cooley got back into the fold and the passing attack as the Redskins rolled up over 300 yards passing against the Saints in Week 2. Cooley snared five balls for 72 yards and appears to be right back on track to his 2007 level. Expect similar target numbers next week against Arizona.

TE Tony Scheffler, DEN - Talk about explosive. Scheffler may not give you consistent week-to-week production, but he sure helped a ton of fantasy teams in Week 2. Cutler three to Scheffler 10 teams as the young TE found pay-dirt twice. He has the ability to do that a few more times this season.

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TE Kevin Boss, NYG - Maybe the Giants should have kept Shockey? There is a small silver lining to that zero he posted for the second consecutive week -- he had two targets and a 28 yard reception called back due to a penalty. Yeah, that doesn't help much. We recommend you look elsewhere for your TE2 options.

TE Dallas Clark, IND - Clark was inactive in week two (injured knee). The Colts felt it was best to rest Clark this week and they may do the same in week three, considering the bye is coming in week four.

TE Alge Crumpler, TEN - Crumpler was expected to play a big role in the Tennessee passing game, but it hasn't materialized (only 5 targets this season). Kerry Collins seems very comfortable utilizing his WRs (21 total targets to Justin Gage and Justin McCareins), and there is little evidence to suspect that will change.

TE Nate Jackson, DEN - Coming into Sunday's game, it appeared that Nate Jackson and Tony Scheffler were jockeying for status as the Broncos' top receiving tight end. The issue appears to be settled, however, and Scheffler is the man. Jackson had no targets on Sunday while Scheffler had ten, and Daniel Graham had five.

TE Greg Olsen, CHI - only caught two passes in week two. The unfortunate thing for the former Miami Hurricane was that he lost both on fumbles. He had 7 receiving yards this week. In week one, Olsen had two catches for 36 yards. Forty-three total receiving yards on four catches and two fumbles is not what fantasy owners wanted to see through two games.

TE Dante Rosario, CAR - Rosario was questionable in week two due to a sprained foot he suffered in the win against San Diego in week one. As a result he wasn't too effective with only one catch for 6 yards. If you were relying on Rosario to help you out this week, you didn't get it. Rosario was supposed to be more of a presence in the offense in Steve Smith's absence. Smith's return should decrease Rosario's role, but that's not to say he won't see an increase in looks later this season. The team likes what they have in Rosario, just don't expect him to be a staple in the offense anytime soon. As a result, his fantasy value remains fairly minimal right now. He's not worth a start yet, but keep an eye on him.

TE L.J. Smith, PHI - We expected much more from Smith especially with all of the WRs that are ailing for the Eagles. However, he was targeted only three times on Monday night and caught a single pass. He is currently behind Brian Westbrook and DeSean Jackson for touches. When Reggie Brown and Kevin Curtis return, Smith could become little more than an afterthought.

TE Ben Utecht, CIN - Utecht suffered a chest injury in the first quarter and had to leave the Week 2 contest. It looks like he'll miss a few weeks due to the injury. By the time he returns, Chris Henry will be back on the field as well, and it doesn't look like this offense is capable of producing enough action to make Utecht a viable fantasy option.

TE Ben Watson, NE - missed another game. He did practice a little this week, but is not ready to play. He is not worth a roster spot in most leagues.

Holding steady

TE Tony Gonzalez, KC - The one constant in the Chiefs' offense for the last decade has been Tony Gonzalez. But even though he scored a touchdown on Sunday, the Chiefs may not have many redzone opportunities this season. Gonzalez will still get his share of receptions and yards, but he won't be a top five fantasy TE without at least five or six touchdowns, and right now it looks like that figure might be hard to reach.

TE Jeremy Shockey, NO - Shockey had a disappointing two catches for 22 yards in week two, but the Saints have a favorable schedule against the pass coming up (@DEN, SF, MIN, OAK). With Marques Colston missing from the lineup, Shockey should benefit. We expect him to have much better games coming up, so don't think about benching him, despite the down game against the Redskins.


Kicker

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PK David Akers, PHI - He wasn't considered to be an elite PK when the season began, but the Eagles offense is certainly giving Akers plenty of chances to excel. He is perfect on 13 attempts (four FGs and nine PATs) this season.

PK John Carney, NYG - After a second strong week (2 FG, 5 extra points) it appears that there's plenty of leg left in John Carney. The Giants have a good matchup against Cincinnati in Week 3, so one more solid week may be in store before his bye (and probable release).

PK Jason Elam, ATL - Elam was two for two in FG attempts in week one and three for three in week two. He kicks in a dome and he already has one 50-yarder under his belt. Elam is a consistent kicker that represents good value going forward.

PK John Kasay, CAR - Kasay is six for six in FG attempts this year with four PATs. The Panthers are 2-0 and with Steve Smith returning they will likely see the end zone more often. Kasay represents good value as a kicker going forward.

PK Ryan Longwell, MIN - has seen plenty of opportunity so far this season. In the two games, he has converted seven of eight field goal chances, most coming in week two. Against the Colts, the former Cal kicker hit five Field Goals, and missed once. Three of those scoring kicks were outside of 45 yards. With the strong run game and good defense of the Vikings, Longwell will have some big games this year.

Downgrade

PK Shayne Graham, CIN - Semi-lost in the collapse of the Bengals offense is the lack of production from Graham. He has connected only one FG (on two attempts) and a pair of PATs this season. For a player that was supposed to be just a notch below the top tier of fantasy PKs, that is completely unacceptable.

Holding steady


Team Defense

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TD Chicago Bears, CHI - The Bears defense was coming off of a great performance against the Colts on Sunday night. In week two against the Panthers, the Bear special teams blocked a punt for a touchdown. The defense added three sacks and an interception. The Bears defense and special teams can score good fantasy points. Keep an eye on the Devin Hester injury though. His absence takes much of the shine off of this unit.

TD New York Giants, NYG - The Rams are the cure for any defense, not that the Giants were hurting for fantasy points. Six sacks, an interception by Justin Tuck that he ran back for a touchdown, and only 13 points against. Add in that they face Cincinnati next week and you have a great defense again in Week 3.

TD Green Bay Packers, GB - The Packers defense had a great fantasy game against the Detroit Lions. Yes, it was against the lowly Lions offense. They picked off three Kitna passes and sacked him five times. In addition, two of those interceptions were returned for touchdowns. The Packers could be a top fantasy defense this year.

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TD Denver Broncos, DEN - The Broncos gave up 486 total net yards to the Chargers on Sunday, got just one sack (for a loss of one yard), and their one turnover was on a blown call that couldn't be reviewed due to technical difficulties. It is looking like this unit will have to be carried by the offense this season.

TD San Diego Chargers, SD - The Chargers' defense gives up some of its big play ability without Merriman in the lineup, and the run defense inside has looked weak all throughout the preseason and the first two games of the regular season. Even the pass defense was soft on Sunday, giving Brandon Marshall plenty of room underneath to play catch with Jay Cutler.

TD Detroit Lions, DET - The Lions defense played terribly once again in week two. Against the Packers, Detroit yielded over 400 total yards versus Aaron Rodgers and the Packer offense. They only sacked him once, recovered one fumble and intercepted zero passes. The Lions are a defense to avoid.

Holding steady

TD Pittsburgh Steelers, PIT - The Steelers shut down Cleveland, a team that has been stifled two weeks in a row (Dallas Week 1). If you believe that the Browns are a good offense then Pittsburgh's two interceptions, two sacks and holding them to just six points and 208 yards is a great job. We'll know very soon how good this defense is as the Steelers face Philadelphia in Week 3.