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Fantasy Intelligence Report – Week 15

N.N. – News Nuggets

According to the
Cleveland Plain-Dealer, the Browns will start Seneca Wallace behind center on Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals due to Colt McCoy’s continuous struggle with concussion-like symptoms. It will be Wallace’s first start of the season. In his lone career start against the Cardinals, back in December of 2008, Wallace went 24-of-43 for 250 yards and two touchdowns.

According to the
Pittsburgh Tribune Review, Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will be a game-time decision. Roethlisberger maintains he has made progress and will be fitted with a custom brace for his bad ankle if he goes.

“I’m going to do everything I can to be out there. I don’t know if it’s my decision,” Roethlisberger said. “If it was just a matter of pain, I’d be out there. I’m physically unable to do certain things.”

It’s not a good week for the Steelers to lose Roethlisberger. Their opponent – the San Francisco 49ers – have the top run defense and have yet to allow a touchdown on the ground this season.

According to the
Kansas City Star, either Kyle Orton or Ricky Stanzi will start for the Chiefs this Sunday against the Green Bay Packers, not the currently benched Tyler Palko.

“If Orton is able to go, then Orton is the quarterback,” interrim head coach Romeo Crennel said at his daily news conference. “We’ll have to see how his finger is and how he comes along and whether we can count on him with that finger.”

If Orton can’t go, Stanzi will make his first career start against a Packers’ pass defense that has been gashed throughout the season through the air, but has been playing much better as of late. Orton has a lifetime 66.2 quarterback rating against Green Bay.

According to the
Detroit Free Press, Lions’ running back Kevin Smith hopes he will be ready to play against the Oakland Raiders this week, as his ankle has made some progress in the healing process. The Raiders are allowing a league-high 5.3 yards per carry, so it may be wise to have Smith in your fantasy lineup this week if he can go.

According to
jsonline.com, Packers’ wide receiver Donald Driver believes the offense will be fine without Greg Jennings in the starting lineup.

“We’ve got a team (where) I think everybody has been playing well all season long.” Driver said. “He’s a great player. We will miss him. But we’ll move forward and continue to play. As long as we can get him back and make a playoff run, we’ll be fine.”

While it’s hard to gauge which one of the play-making receivers will step up the most beyond Jordy Nelson, it is rumored that rookie Randall Cobb has perhaps the best slot receiver skills and could see an increase in playing time in formations that Jennings was seen lined up inside. Week 15 sleeper? Maybe.

W.15.R.T. – Week 15 Random Thoughts

– Calvin “Megatron” Johnson has been one “megabust” for fantasy owners down the stretch thus far. Those who traded him while his value was high are probably prepping their championship dances, and thinking about how they don’t miss having the former big play receiver polluting their starting lineup with bench-warming numbers.

– Seattle Seahawks’ rookie wide receiver Doug Baldwin has a chance at eclipsing the 1,000-yard mark if he averages 94 yards per game to finish the season. It’s something that no undrafted rookie has ever done. Let’s just hope that he’s not the next D.J. Hackett.

– Maybe Denver Broncos’ quarterback Tim Tebow will finally show up in the first and second quarters, with the the worst pass defense coming to town. Correction: Tebow better show up. New England Patriots’ head coach Bill Belicheck won’t be afraid to run up the score, especially after seeing the tapes of the Tebow fourth quarter magic in past weeks.

– We finally will get to see a Monday night game that will be worth watching. Yep, a possible Charlie BatchAlex Smith 10-3 showdown. I know I have my chips and dip ready.

– One of the best blocks of the season came last week during Early Doucet’s long touchdown scamper when wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald left San Francisco 49ers’ defensive back Chris Culliver feeling like a smashed pick-up truck clobbered by a freight train. Is there any better all-around receiver in the game today than Fitzgerald? Anyone?

– How many multi-touchdown off days is Green Bay Packers’ quarterback Aaron Rodgers going to have? I mean, 281 yards and two touchdowns for rookie Blaine Gabbert is a modern day miracle.

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