Fantasy Friday: Week 7 Team Scouting Reports From SB Nation

We'll be adding team scouting reports throughout the day, so check back regularly. We kick-off with the Eagles.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: Green Bay Packers

We close out the team reviews with the Packers and Acme Packing Company.

QB Aaron Rodgers.
He’s probably a top 5 or 6 QB in everyone’s fantasy league, and he’s coming off 350+ yard game against the Lions (and he only attempted one pass in the 4th quarter). Imagine what he could do if his tackles could block. This week, he’s going up against one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL; the Browns. Start.

RB Ryan Grant. Against the Lions awful run defense, he only managed 90 yards on 24 carries. He’s still the primary back and going up against the poor Browns run defense, but he’s strictly a bye-week/injury replacement fantasy player. Sit.

WR Greg Jennings. One of the biggest fantasy busts this season continues to disappoint with a modest 6 catch, 60 yard performance last week. Now they seem to be getting him the ball, but nothing deep, and he hasn’t seen the end zone since week 1. He’s been bothered by a hip injury, but it shouldn’t keep him out on Sunday. Also, he should be another beneficiary of playing the Browns. Start, but growing impatient.

WR Donald Driver. No TD last week, but a 100 yard game. He should be a Top 25 receiver in every fantasy league, and, did I mention, he’s playing the Browns? Start.

TE Jermichael Finley
. He’s just barely cracking the Top 20 in TE rankings, but he’s also getting hot. After only 5 catches in his first 3 games, he has 11 in the last 2. He should be sitting in most leagues, but he’s someone to keep an eye on. Sit.

Packers Defense. The defense just keep getting better each week, and pitched a shut out against the Lions. And the Browns offense is worse. Start.

Visit Acme Packing Company for all Green Bay news.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: St. Louis Rams

Well, it’s the Rams, so there isn’t much fantasy help, but Turf Show Times does the right thing and checks in anyway.

Every week has become a tough matchup for the St. Louis Rams, and a team averaging less than 10 points of offense per game offers little in the way of fantasy value. RB Steven Jackson, as always, is your best bet. He’ll get the carries this week. Jackson will also get the catches, as he might be the most talented option to pass to on a team so thin at WR, especially since they’ll be playing from behind.

For the die-hard Rams fan, it’s Turf Show Times.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: New Orleans Saints

You’re going to play all your Saints anyway, but Canal Street Chronicles highlights a couple anyway.

Drew Brees
– This one is pretty obvious. If Drew is on your fantasy team, make sure he’s starting. After a couple of slow games, he returned to form last week against the Giants. This week the Saints face the Dolphins and their weak secondary. Expect more fireworks from the former Boilermaker.

Mike Bell
– He has recovered from a PCL sprain and made his return to action during the Saints game last week against the Giants, scoring a touchdown. Because he’s behind starting running back Pierre Thomas on the depth chart he won’t pick up too much yardage, but he’s been getting most of the goaline work. If you need a fill in and your league rewards touchdowns as much as yardage, Bell might be worth a look.

Hit the town with Canal Street Chronicles and enjoy some Saints news.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: Washington Redskins

The Redskins host the Eagles on Monday night and Hogs Haven breaks down some of the (not so) favorable matchups.

If you like having your groin poked at with a glowing hot branding iron, you might just be the kind of fantasy owner that would start some of these guys:

Jason Campbell, QB- Aside from his craptastic performance against the Chiefs, he has not had a terrible season. Unfortunately for JC, he continues to ride the “Do they want me or not” roller coaster. I actually like him against the Eagles this Monday night. The Eagles have not been super impressive and even JaMarcus Russell got some stats against them last week. The truth is I have nowhere else to go on my roster, but don’t tell JC.

Clinton Portis, RB – He got the majority of his yards last week on one carry. While he is capable of leading this offense to a win, he will most likely find it hard to find running room against the Eagles. I doubt many fantasy owners are without other reliable options this week, and I am inclined to advise those owners to use them.

Chris Cooley, TE
- Zach Miller busted loose for 139 yards and a score against the Eagles last week as JaMarcus Russell leaned on him to move the ball. Cooley is more than capable to fill that role. Amidst all the chaos of a new play-caller and a different philosophy in the red zone, it is likely Cooley will be prominently featured.

Santana Moss, WR – He has traditionally had tough outings against the Eagles. Most notably, Jason Campbell misses him on deep routes against these guys. Should that change on Monday night, great. Until he proves he can show up on a weekly basis regardless of what defense he is facing, Moss should be reserved.

Washington Redskins Defense – I think you have to keep starting this unit. They are #3 against the pass in the league and the Eagles like to throw—something’s got to give. The Redskins have proven they can get to the quarterback. If the first guy on the scene can bring McNabb down, this unit should be able to post some decent sack numbers. I have less confidence in the corners, but if they can tip a ball or two, I can envision a defensive score for this unit.

To dive into the absurdity that is the world of the Washington Redskins these days, look no further than the guys over at Hogs Haven.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: Arizona Cardinals

The Cards had a big game last week; what does Revenge Of The Birds say about this week?

Kurt Warner and Larry Fitzgerald:
Chances are that if either of these guys are on your roster you’ve already got them in your starting lineup and this week should be no exception. Larry Fitzgerald is starting pick up steam after a slow start to the season, at least by his ridiculously high standards, and the Cardinals passing offense will face a Giants secondary that is banged up and allowed over 350 yards and four touchdowns to Drew Brees last week.

Anquan Boldin: Boldin has a high ankle sprain and is considered a game time decision for now. He’s yet to practice or even run full speed so don’t expect a big game even if he does suit up. If at all possible, leave him on the bench.

Steve Breaston:
While he can be hit or miss at times, Boldin’s uncertainty makes Breaston a significant factor this week. Boldin missed four games last season and Breaston flourished in those games topping 75 yards receiving in three of the games. The best news is that he continues to improve and has averaged 80 yards per game this season.

Find the oasis in the desert, visit Revenge Of The Birds.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers get a key cog back this week, Niners Nation explains.

The 49ers matchup this weekend against the Texans is not one for defensive minds. The Texans defense generally struggles and the 49ers defense got blown up by Atlanta. Funny enough though, in one of my leagues I have the 49ers defense and they still managed some points. They’re an aggressive defense that will get turnovers, and hopefully more consistently, sacks. If you don’t mind getting few if any points for “points given up” I say keep going with them.

But who are we kidding, this week is about two guys: Frank Gore and Michael Crabtree.

Frank Gore makes his eagerly anticipated return after missing the last two games, and then resting over the bye week to heal up ankle and foot injuries. He’s got fresh legs and is facing a Texans rush defense that generally has struggled, although they did look good against previously leading rusher Cedric Benson (serious, Cedric Benson is actually big time this year!). The 49ers switched up the right side of their offensive line, elevating Tony Pashos to full-time right tackle and moving Adam Snyder over to right guard to split time with second year struggling guard Chilo Rachal. Will that make a difference? Well, Frank Gore will always get numbers, but let’s hope for big things this weekend.

The other guy is wide receiver Michael Crabtree. Oh yes, he is officially getting going this week. Not only is he making his debut, but the rumors persist that he’ll actually start this game ahead of Josh Morgan. Initially the plan was for him to see 12-15 plays. Supposedly he so impressed 49ers coaches and players over his first two weeks practicing and studying with the team, that they feel confident in elevating that time. Offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye was quoted as saying he expect Crabtree to appear in half the offensive plays. Now whether he produces is another question, but I’m excited to see. This could also mean big things for Shaun Hill going forward having a potential big time playmaker at his disposal. It’s going to take some time, so we’ll see how this first week plays out. If you’re team is struggling or has enough other weapons, maybe roll out Crabtree just because of the upside. If you need some guaranteed points, it might be wise to wait a week.

Explore the boundaries of 49ers fandom at Niners Nation.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: Cincinnati Bengals

Cincy Jungle says the Bengals are trying a more balanced attack and Cedric Benson has been the key.

One has to wonder if it’s becoming less likely that Carson Palmer will be an elite quarterback with any consistency that he was once known for. For one thing, the Bengals offense is balancing itself out, trying to rush the football as much as they can when the game is close. While Palmer might put up serviceable touchdown numbers, such as five straight games with at least a touchdown pass, Palmer is on pace to record his lowest numbers during a season in which he didn’t miss any games due to injury; he’s on pace for 21 touchdowns and 3,666 yards. The last time Palmer played the Chicago Bears, he recorded three touchdown passes in a 24-7 win on September 25, 2005.

Where there might be hesitation with starting Palmer, there shouldn’t be with starting Cedric Benson in a game the local media is calling “Benson Bowl 2009”. While he struggled against the Houston Texans for 44 yards rushing, in large part because the Bengals had to abandon the run in the second half, he’s ranked third with 531 yards rushing and in the top ten with attempts per game, touchdowns and first downs. But it’s the motivation that’s clearly the spirit in which Benson could tap into for a great game against a former team. While he’s not calling it a revenge game, he’s very open in telling anyone who’ll listen about his time in Chicago being less than welcoming.

As for the defense, the Bengals struggled last week against the Houston Texans, allowing 472 yards of total offense. It was the first time this year the Bengals allowed more than 24 points, allowed more than 400 yards total and more than 350 yards passing. Matt Schaub threw for 392 yards passing and four touchdowns. The Bengals did force two turnovers, which is the third straight game the defense forced multiple turnovers.

Thanks to Cincy Jungle, the home of all things Bengals.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: San Diego Chargers

Let’s check in on the Chargers with Bolts From The Blue.

Philip Rivers, Antonio Gates, Vincent Jackson, LaDainian Tomlinson – Start them all. Worst case scenario is that each gets good yardage and a there are a few scores in an easy victory over the Chiefs. Best-case scenario is a shootout where each guy puts up huge numbers.

Chargers D – If you still have them, and trust them, start them. For the first time all season the Chargers are facing a team that can’t block up front, which should lead to pressure. Any time the Bolts are getting pressure on the QB, there’s a good chance for a “pick six” from Antonio Cromartie or Eric Weddle.

Darren Sproles
– After going back to the role of backup RB, his kick and punt returns seem to be getting better. I think he’s fresher. If your league gives points for return yardage, find a spot for Sproles in your lineup.

For all your Chargers news, visit Bolts From The Blue.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: Kansas City Chiefs

There’s good news in KC as the Chiefs got their first win. But Arrowhead Pride let’s us know if that success has any fantasy impact for this week.

Matt Cassel – The Chargers have replaced Antoine Cason in the nickel so all is not well in the Chargers secondary. Cassel hasn’t been consistently putting up big yards but he is getting into the end zone at a decent rate. Look for a touchdown from him if the Chiefs running game can’t get it going.

Larry Johnson – We’ve talked about it before – statistically speaking, LJ is the worst starting running back in the NFL. It’s getting to the point where, even with a solid matchup, he is not a fantasy starter. Bench him.

Dwayne Bowe – Bowe is a solid fantasy play every week. Last week, Bowe eclipsed the 100 yard mark on six receptions. The kicker is that he was targeted 14 times so the potential is there for him to have a big day. He’s a solid No. 2.

Chiefs Defense – Which Chiefs defense will show up? Don’t expect many sacks as they rank near the bottom of the league but the Chiefs are generally good for a turnover. A good run defense can force Philip Rivers, who has a 7/9 touchdown to interception ratio against the Chiefs, into some mistakes.

If you take pride in your allegiance to the Chiefs, then visit Arrowhead Pride.

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Fantasy Scouting Report: Indianapolis Colts

Stampede Blue has the goods on the Colts in fantasy this weekend. Nice matchup for the Indy players.

The Colts have struggled to run the football (#30 in the league) but for their first five games they have faced some of the best run defenses in football, such as the Dolphins, Cardinals, and Titans. This Sunday, they face the Rams, ranked 26th against the run. The Colts very much want to establish a consistent ground game coming out of their bye week. So, if you’ve got Joseph Addai or Donald Brown on your fantasy rosters, now is the time to start them. They should get a lot of carries.

For your kicker, if you have Adam Vinatieri, it’s best to shelve him for a while and pick up Matt Stover, who is replacing Vinatieri on Indy’s roster.

For defense, the Rams do not sport a very good offense, and Colts safety Bob Sanders is expected to return to the starting lineup this weekend. Corner Kelvin Hayden is also expected back. So, if you have Indy’s defense, this is a good game (in theory) to play them.

The Colts are hot, and Stampede Blue is hotter, covering all aspects of the Indy team.

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Fantasy Friday: Week 7 Team Scouting Reports From SB Nation

The Eagles lost to the Raiders? Yup, just last week; we'll see what Bleeding Green Nation has to say about their chances at a bounce-back game.

Last week QB Donovan McNabb laid an egg in Oakland, but that sort of performance in a given season isn't exactly new for him. Last season he had one of the worst games in his career against the Ravens, but then responded with one of the most productive games of his career on Thanksgiving against the Cardinals. So I wouldn't be surprised if he came back with a big performance this Monday night. Of course, I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't...

The Eagles almost completely abandoned the run last week which hurt RB Brian Westbrook's fantasy value as a runner, but he still had 9 catches for 91 yards. They've taken a a lot of heat locally and nationally for the imbalance in playcalling, so there's a decent chance they'll try to even the run and pass out a bit this week. Hopefully, that will mean a few more opportunities on the ground for Westbrook.

Seriously, if you're an Eagles fan, Bleeding Green Nation is a must-read.

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