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2009 Start/Bench List Week 5

The high-powered offenses of

New Orleans,

San Diego and

Green Bay are on a bye this week along with the resurgent Jay Cutler and the Bears. Play the matchups this week as the Steelers, Eagles, Ravens and Texans will all produce big fantasy numbers in Week 5.

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


Bye Weeks:


Green Bay,

New Orleans,

San Diego


Bye Weeks: Jay Cutler, Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Philip Rivers


Peyton Manning, Indianapolis at Tennessee

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh at Detroit


Tom Brady, New England at Denver


Matt Schaub, Houston at Arizona: After throwing for 300 yards or more in Weeks 2 and 3, Schaub threw for “only” 224 yards against the Raiders last week. Look for Schaub to return to the 300-club against the Cardinals who have allowed the third-most passing yards in the NFL this season.

Donovan McNabb,

Philadelphia vs.


Bay: The bye week couldn’t have come at a better time for McNabb and the Eagles. McNabb rested up and should send Kevin Kolb back to the bench this week against


Bay. Look for McNabb to have success against the Buccaneers pass defense who have allowed a league-high six passes for 40 yards or more this season.


Jason Campbell, Washington at

Carolina: Even though

Campbell has thrown two touchdowns in each of the past two weeks, he has also thrown four interceptions.

Campbell will struggle to find the end zone this week against a well-rested

Carolina defense fresh off a bye week. Look for the INTs to continue, but not the TDs.

Matt Ryan,

Atlanta at

San Francisco: Prior to the bye week, Ryan struggled against the Patriots, throwing for only 199 yards with no touchdowns. Ryan has another road game against another tough pass defense in

San Francisco. The Falcons offense will struggle running and passing this week as Mike Singletary has the ‘Niners defense believing in the team concept and playing very well defensively.

Running Backs

Bye Weeks: Matt Forte, Ryan Grant, Reggie Bush, Pierre Thomas, Mike Bell, LaDainian Tomlinson, Darren Sproles


Chris Johnson, Tennessee vs. Indianapolis

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota at St. Louis

Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville at Seattle

Willis McGahee, Baltimore vs. Cincinnati

Steven Jackson, St. Louis vs. Minnesota

Marion Barber, Dallas at Kansas City

*Questionable for Week 5*

Steve Slaton, Houston at Arizona

DeAngelo Williams, Carolina vs. Washington

Michael Turner, Atlanta at San Francisco

Frank Gore, San Francisco vs. Atlanta

*Injured, will return in Week 7*


Brandon Jacobs, N.Y. Giants vs. Oakland: With the status of Eli Manning still up in the air, look for the Giants to run early and often against the Raiders who have allowed an average of 146.2 rushing yards per game this season. Jacobs has yet to rush for over 100 yards and only has one touchdown on the season. Look for both of those stats to improve this week as the G-Men dominate at home.

Brian Westbrook,

Philadelphia vs.


Bay: Westbrook has frustrated owners thus far (present company included) with an ankle injury that prevented him from playing in Week 3. The bye week helped and Westbrook practiced on Monday which is a very good sign. Even though LeSean McCoy will see plenty of playing time, the Eagles offense will be firing on all cylinders. Start as many Eagles as you can this week, including Westbrook.

Ronnie Brown,

Miami vs. N.Y. Jets: The Chad Henne era started off with a bang last week as

Miami dominated

Buffalo thanks mainly to Ronnie Brown and his 115 yards rushing and two TDs on the day. Look for

Miami to lean heavily on Brown again this week as the Jets will pressure Henne, forcing

Miami to rely on the running attack to avoid mistakes from the new starting QB.


Donald Brown,

Indianapolis at

Tennessee: Just when you think you have a handle on how the Colts are dividing the running responsibilities, the Colts give Joseph Addai 12 carries and Brown only nine carries. Given the success that Addai had last week and the white-hot start of Peyton Manning, Brown’s chances will be limited against a Titans run defense that has only allowed an average of 79.8 rushing yards this season.

Thomas Jones, N.Y. Jets at

Miami: Jones has struggled this season after a Week 1 performance of 107 yards rushing. Things won’t get any easier for Jones this week as he faces the Dolphins who have allowed the second fewest rushing yards this year. With Shonn Greene starting to steal carries away from Jones, look elsewhere for your starter this week.

Larry Johnson,

Kansas City vs.

Dallas: We are four games into the NFL season, and Johnson has rushed for a total of 189 yards. Yuck. It’s not entirely his fault. The Chiefs have been without Matt Cassel and Dwayne Bowe at different times this season, but the real issue is the offensive line is horrible. The

Dallas defense prides itself on team speed, and with Johnson needing to get outside to find running room, he’ll run into Keith Brooking and the rest of the Cowboys before his finds the open field on Sunday.

Wide Receivers

Bye Weeks: Johnny Knox, Devin Hester, Earl Bennett, Donald Driver, Greg Jennings, Marques Colston, Devery Henderson, Vincent Jackson


Steve Smith, N.Y. Giants vs. Oakland

Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis

at Tennessee

Randy Moss, New England at Denver

Andre Johnson, Houston at Arizona

Calvin Johnson, Detroit vs. Pittsburgh

Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona vs. Houston

Steve Smith, Carolina vs. Washington

Roddy White, Atlanta at San Francisco


DeSean Jackson, Philadelphia vs. Tampa Bay: Another Eagle who benefited from the bye week, Jackson rested his groin injury this week and should be ready to continue his breakneck pace against the Buccaneers.

Jackson has averaged five catches for 125 yards and a TD over the past two weeks and should continue to excel as the Eagles fly high at home against


Santonio Holmes,

Pittsburgh at

Detroit: I know, Hines Ward caught eight passes for 113 yards last week. Yes, Mike Wallace has looked strong as the Steelers’ No. 3 WR catching seven passes for 102 yards two weeks ago. However, I’m still a believer that when all is said and done, Holmes will be the top receiver for

Pittsburgh. Look for Holmes to return to center stage this week against

Detroit who have allowed a league-high 12 TD passes through just four weeks of the NFL season.

Nate Burleson, Seattle vs. Jacksonville: T.J. Houshmandzadeh may have had a breakout game last week, but as far as I’m concerned, all that did was alert defenses that they need to game plan for Housh, opening the door for Burleson to continue his early-season success. Whether it’s Matt Hasselbeck or Seneca Wallace taking the snaps, the Jaguars defense, which has allowed the second most passing yards this season, won’t be able to keep Burleson in check this week.

Derrick Mason, Baltimore vs.

Cincinnati: So much for retirement. Mason has looked very strong the last two weeks catching a total of 12 passes for 206 yards and two TDs. This week he faces the Bengals who turned Mohamed Massaquoi from an unknown WR to a waiver-wire sensation in one week. Look for Mason to continue to post solid numbers as Joe Flacco produces big stats once again.


Terrell Owens,

Buffalo vs.

Cleveland: Hopefully by now, you’ve already given up on Lee Evans, but T.O. should be close behind. Owens still has the skills to be a productive receiver, but Trent Edwards is not the type of QB that can quickly get the ball in Owens’ hands for him to showcase his ability to break tackles. The Browns played inspired ball last week against the Bengals and the Bills got crushed by

Miami. Things will get worse in

Buffalo before they get better. Jump off this train wreck before it’s too late.

Percy Harvin,

Minnesota at

St. Louis: You won’t see many more performances from Brett Favre like the one he gave on Monday night against his old team. It was quite a site to see. Even with Favre throwing bullets to every receiver imaginable on Monday, Harvin managed only two catches for 39 yards. This week, the Vikings will pass much less than they did last week as

Adrian “All Day” Peterson will earn his nickname on the road in

St. Louis.

Mohamed Massaquoi, Cleveland at

Buffalo: Congratulations Mohamed, you are officially the waiver-wire flavor of the week. Per the flavor of the week rules, you’ll be expected you to return to the bottom of the WR stats this week and not return to the forefront of fantasy owner’s minds again unless Braylon Edwards gets injured.

Mario Manningham, N.Y. Giants vs.

Oakland: While one could say that with Nnamdi Asomugha likely to shadow Steve Smith all day, Manningham should be the open receiver. However, Asomugha will divide his time between Smith and Manningham, and with the Giants running as often as possible on Sunday, Manningham will post 2-3 catches for 45-50 yards which is what he has done over the past two weeks.

Tight Ends

Bye Weeks: Greg Olsen, Kellen Davis, Jermichael Finley, Donald Lee, Jeremy Shockey, Antonio Gates


Dallas Clark, Indianapolis at Tennessee

Brent Celek, Philadelphia vs. Tampa Bay


Chris Cooley, Washington at Carolina

Vernon Davis, San Francisco vs. Atlanta


Jason Witten, Dallas at Kansas City

Tony Gonzalez, Atlanta at San Francisco


Heath Miller, Pittsburgh at Detroit: Start ‘em if you got ‘em! Get those Steelers in your starting lineup this week including Miller who caught eight passes for 70 yards and two scores last week. While you can’t expect those numbers every week, Miller will continue to thrive in the new pass-happy

Pittsburgh offense.

Todd Heap, Baltimore vs.

Cincinnati: Look for Heap to post big numbers against a Bengals defense that has allowed an average of seven catches to tight ends over the past three weeks. The Ravens offense will continue to shine and Heap will play a major role in their success this week.


Zach Miller,

Oakland at N.Y. Giants: Miller suffered a concussion last week, but unfortunately, he still remembers that JaMarcus Russell is the Raiders QB. I guess his nightmares will continue for at least another week.

Dante Rosario,

Carolina vs.


Rosario comes off the bye week having caught a touchdown pass in each of the past two weeks. Unfortunately for the

Carolina offense, those were the only two touchdown passes in the past two weeks. The Redskins rank fourth in the NFL in fewest passing yards allowed so far this season, which means the Panthers will rely on the running game to generate their offense on Sunday. Get ready to block Dante.

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