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2009 Start/Bench List Week 13

It’s Week
13, and there’s lots of offense to go around this week. The Vikings, Chargers,
Bengals and Cowboys will post serious numbers in both passing and rushing, the
Colts will dominate the air, and the Panthers will crush on the ground. Take
advantage of this buffet of stats as they provide you with enough points for
that one last playoff push.

When using this list, try and remember a couple basic rules:

1) Studs – always play your studs. Each position will include a list of players
that are considered studs and should not be benched. If you have the luxury of
needing to decide between studs, check out the matchups or feel free to let the
shark tank assist you in your decisions.

2) Depth – every fantasy team is different and some have more depth than
others. Only follow the recommended moves if your team depth allows you to make
such a move




Drew Brees, New Orleans at Washington

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay vs. Baltimore

Peyton Manning, Indianapolis vs. Tennessee

Tom Brady, New England at Miami

Brett Favre, Minnesota at Arizona

Matt Schaub, Houston at Jacksonville

Philip Rivers, San Diego at Cleveland


Donovan McNabb, Philadelphia at Atlanta: McNabb has thrown two
touchdowns in two of the past three games and this week he faces a Falcons
defense that has allowed an average of 252.6 yards per game this season (sixth-most
in the NFL) and two passing touchdowns in each of the past three games. Even
without DeSean Jackson, look for McNabb to find plenty of success in the
passing game.

Eli Manning, N.Y. Giants vs.

Despite Manning having a “stress reaction” in his foot (whatever that means),
he makes a strong play against the Cowboys this week. The last time Manning
faced the Cowboys (Week 2) he threw for 330 yards, two touchdowns and no
interceptions. Expect similar numbers as the Giants running game has not been
up to snuff lately.


Joe Flacco, Baltimore at

: Flacco has had his ups and downs this season. He
threw for less than 200 yards in three straight games between Weeks 8-10 and
then responded with over 250 yards in each of the past two games. Look for the
roller coaster ride to continue with Flacco as he struggles against the Packers
this week, who have only allowed an average of 192.5 passing yards per game
this season.

Matt Cassel,

Kansas City vs.


Cassel has
surpassed 250 yards passing only twice this season and he’s sure to fall short
of that mark again this week against the Broncos, who have only allowed 10
passing touchdowns all season.

Denver righted
the ship against the Giants on Thanksgiving and will have a much easier time
shutting down

Cassel and the Chiefs this week.

Running Backs


Chris Johnson, Tennessee at Indianapolis

Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville vs. Houston

Ray Rice, Baltimore at Green Bay

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota at Arizona

Steven Jackson, St. Louis at Chicago

DeAngelo Williams, Carolina vs. Tampa Bay

for Week 13*

Frank Gore, San Francisco at Seattle


Thomas Jones, N.Y. Jets ‘at’ Buffalo: Prior to last week’s game when
Jones rushed for only 75 yards against the Panthers, he had rushed for over 100
yards in four of his past five games. Look for Jones to start a new streak this
week against

who Jones dominated back in Week 6 to the tune of 22 carries for 210 yards and
a touchdown.

Pierre Thomas,

New Orleans vs.

Washington: Even the
Saints have to run the ball sometimes, and when they do this week Thomas will
be the main beneficiary. He has only 11 carries in each of the past three
games, but look for that number to increase against a Redskins defense that has
defended the pass well, but has allowed 127.9 yards per game rushing this year.

Rashard Mendenhall,

Pittsburgh vs.

Oakland: Mendenhall
performed very well against the Ravens last Sunday night rushing for 95 yards
on 24 carries, which is no small feat. This week, even with Ben Roethlisberger
returning, look for Mendenhall to take advantage of a Raiders run defense that
has allowed the second-most rushing yards all season as Mendenhall breaks the
100-yard barrier for the third time this season.


Tim Hightower,

Arizona vs.

Minnesota: Hightower
surprised everyone when he rushed for 110 yards two weeks ago against the Rams.
However, he came back down to earth last week as he rushed for only 55 yards
and caught just three passes for 23 yards. Don’t expect much more than what you
got last week from Hightower against the Vikings, who have allowed the second-fewest
rushing yards in the NFL this season. Plus, Hightower hasn’t had more than 25
yards receiving in the past four weeks.

Joseph Addai,

Indianapolis vs.

Tennessee: While Addai
has been getting the lion’s share of the carries for the Colts as of late, his
yardage totals have been far from stud-like rushing for an average of 61 yards
over the past three games. The last time Addai faced the Titans he rushed for
only 27 yards on 14 carries, although he did score a touchdown and he caught 10
passes for 53 yards. Look for the suddenly dangerous Titans defense to continue
to keep Addai’s rushing totals in check and his receiving totals won’t be
enough to warrant a start.

Justin Forsett, Seattle vs.

: Forsett has rushed for over 100 yards in
two of the past three games, but that was against the Cardinals and the Rams.
The 49ers defend the run much better than their NFC West counterparts and given
the fact that Julius Jones may return this week, Forsett owners look long and
hard over their options as this surprising fantasy star fades back to the pack.

Wide Receivers


Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis vs. Tennessee

Randy Moss, New England at Miami

Wes Welker, New England at Miami

Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona vs. Minnesota

Andre Johnson, Houston at Jacksonville

Steve Smith, N.Y. Giants vs. Dallas

Hines Ward, Pittsburgh vs. Oakland

Vincent Jackson, San Diego at Cleveland

Roddy White, Atlanta vs. Philadelphia

Marques Colston, New Orleans at Washington

Mike Sims-Walker, Jacksonville vs. Houston

Chad Ochocinco, Cincinnati vs. Detroit


Pierre Garcon, Indianapolis vs. Tennessee: Don’t look now, but Garcon
has caught a touchdown in two of the past three games and in the game he didn’t
score, he caught six passes for 108 yards. Garcon has officially filled the
void by Anthony Gonzalez, who is still not expected to play anytime soon. Look
for Garcon to continue to produce solid numbers in the passing game making him
a valuable commodity down the stretch run.

Jason Avant,

Philadelphia at

Atlanta: With DeSean
Jackson unlikely to play this week after suffering a concussion against the
Redskins last week, Avant should fill in nicely and produce solid numbers.
Avant caught five passes for 94 yards last week and he has at least four
catches in the past three games. Donovan McNabb will have plenty of success in
the passing game this week and Avant will be the main target all day long.

Sidney Rice,

Minnesota at

Arizona: Rice has had
back-to-back games of six catches for 89 yards after his monster game in Week
10 when he caught seven passes for 201 yards. The Cardinals have allowed an
average of 258.4 yards passing per game this season (fourth-most in the NFL)
and if Vince Young can throw for 387 yards against them, what do you think
Brett Favre will do? 400 yards? Five touchdowns? Nothing is out of the question
this week. Start Rice along with any other Viking you have this week and enjoy.

Kenny Britt,

Tennessee at

Indianapolis: This rookie
had his best game of the season last week, catching seven passes for 128 yards
and a touchdown, which was the game-winner. The Titans will need to pass to
keep pace with the Colts’ high-powered offense this week, and Britt should post
another solid game. Go get him if you can.


Terrell Owens,

vs. N.Y. Jets: Owens is happy with quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick since he has
caught a touchdown pass in each of the past two weeks averaging 146.5 yards,
but that will all change this week. The Jets held Owens to only three catches
for 13 yards in Week 6 and they’ll continue to put pressure on the quarterback,
minimizing Fitzpatrick’s ability to look down field for Owens. Let’s see if
Owens continues to praise his new quarterback after the clunker he posts this

Chris Chambers,

Kansas City vs.

Denver: Chambers has yet
to post a bad game in a Chiefs uniform as he has averaged 80 receiving yards a
game and has caught four touchdowns in his four games as a Chief. That streak
will come to an end this week against the Broncos who held Chambers to only two
catches for 33 yards in Week 6 when he was still a Charger. Look for Matt
Cassel to struggle along with Chambers as the Chiefs passing attack won’t get
anything going this week.

Steve Smith,

Carolina vs.


After catching three touchdowns in two weeks, Smith was completely shut down
last week, catching only one pass for five yards. The last time Smith faced


he caught only one pass for four yards. With Jake Delhomme likely to miss the
game, Smith shouldn’t be counted on much of anything this week.

Derrick Mason, Baltimore at

: Mason has posted very solid numbers the last two
weeks, averaging eight catches for 102 yards during that span. The last time
Mason had back-to-back games like that was back in Weeks 3 and 4, which was followed
by a zero-catch day in Week 5 against the Bengals. While Mason won’t get shut out
this week, he also won’t post numbers worthy of a start. Look elsewhere.

Tight Ends


Dallas Clark, Indianapolis vs. Tennessee

Vernon Davis, San Francisco at Seattle

Antonio Gates, San Diego at Cleveland

Tony Gonzalez, Atlanta vs. Philadelphia

Brent Celek, Philadelphia at Atlanta

*Questionable for Week

Kellen Winslow, Tampa Bay at Carolina

Heath Miller, Pittsburgh vs. Oakland

Greg Olsen, Chicago vs. St. Louis


Visanthe Shiancoe, Minnesota at Arizona: Shiancoe has a touchdown in
each of the past two games, averaging six catches for 65 yards. Look for more
of the same from him this week as Brett Favre’s favorite red zone target continues
to produce big numbers.

Tony Scheffler,

Denver at

Kansas City: Consistency
isn’t exactly Scheffler’s game, but look at what tight ends have done against
this Chiefs defense the last two weeks: (7 catches, 95 yards and 1 TD; 7
catches, 118 yards and 2 TDs). Looks like it’s go time for Scheffler this week.


Marcedes Lewis,

Jacksonville vs.

Houston: Lewis has
averaged three catches for 56 yards over the past three weeks, but he’s only
scored two touchdowns all season and hasn’t found the end zone since Week 4.
The Jaguars will run the ball all day and when they pass, David Garrard will
struggle. Look for Lewis to match his output from his last meeting with the
Texans when he caught one pass for 18 yards.

Dustin Keller, N.Y. Jets ‘at’

Keller was on his way to a big game last week against the Panthers, but a
fumble cost him his third touchdown of the season. Keller caught only two
passes for 16 yards in Week 6 against the Bills and there’s no reason to
believe he’ll improve on those numbers this week playing in Buffalo (well,
technically Toronto).

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