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Start/Bench List 2008 Week 4

Just when the Miami Dolphins start rolling and the New England Patriots start struggling, along comes the bye weeks to stop the momentum in both directions. Be on the lookout for bye week specials (and players to avoid) listed below to assist those of you looking for a one-week replacement.

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. This list will change from week to week.

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.

Enough of the chit-chat, onto the list!!

Quarterbacks

Bye Weeks:

Peyton Manning, Indianapolis;

Matt Cassel, New England;

Matt Hasselbeck, Seattle;

Jon Kitna, Detroit;

Eli Manning, N.Y. Giants;

Chad Pennington, Miami

Studs

Donovan McNabb,

Philadelphia at

Chicago

Drew Brees,

New Orleans vs. San Francisco

Tony Romo,

Dallas vs.

Washington

Start

Kurt Warner,

Arizona (at N.Y. Jets): Despite missing the 200-yard passing mark for the second time this season, Warner threw his fifth TD pass to only one interception last week against the Redskins. Look for Warner to have more success in the air against the Jets who allowed three TD passes in the first half last week against the Chargers.

Brett Favre, N.Y. Jets (vs.

Arizona): Due to the inefficiency of the Jets pass defense last Monday night, Favre had to throw … a lot. He completed 30 passes for 271 yards including three TDs and two INTs. With

Thomas Jones showing no signs of helping to take the pressure off the offense, look for Favre to post solid numbers once again as the Jets move the ball in the air but continue to stall on the ground.

Bench

Matt Schaub, Houston (at

Jacksonville): When the head coach needs to confirm that you are still the starting QB, it’s probably a good sign that things aren’t going exactly as planned. Unfortunately for Schaub, he faces another tough defense in

Jacksonville this week after already playing

Pittsburgh and

Tennessee.

Tyler Thigpen/

Damon Huard, Kansas City (vs. Denver): It doesn’t matter which Chiefs QB gets the starting nod, the Chiefs passing attack won’t have the same success that the Chargers and the Saints have the previous two weeks against the Broncos. It all starts up front and the struggles with the offensive line will once again come to the forefront for the Chiefs as little time to throw will spell big trouble for the

Kansas City passing attack.

Running Backs

Bye Weeks:

Joseph Addai, Indianapolis;

Laurence Maroney and

Sammy Morris, New England;

Julius Jones, Seattle,

Kevin Smith and

Rudi Johnson, Detroit;

Brandon Jacobs and

Derrick Ward, N.Y. Giants;

Ricky Williams and

Ronnie Brown, Miami

Studs

LaDainian Tomlinson, San Diego at Oakland

Steven Jackson, St. Louis vs. Buffalo

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota at Tennessee

Clinton Portis, Washington at Dallas

Brian Westbrook, Philadelphia at Chicago

Reggie Bush, New Orleans vs. San Francisco

Marion Barber, Dallas vs. Washington

Frank Gore, San Francisco at New Orleans

Start

Maurice Jones-Drew,

Jacksonville (vs.

Houston): MJD posted 19 carries for 107 yards and a TD last week against the Colts. Now that’s what I’m talking about! Look for more of the same this week as MJD get his yards despite sharing time with

Fred Taylor.

Chris Perry,

Cincinnati (vs.

Cleveland): Perry is your bye week special at RB. He has scored a TD in each of the past two games and didn’t fumble last week! Seriously, the Bengals offense should see a big boost all around against the Browns, and Perry could play the Le’Ron McClain role from a week ago and find the end zone more than once this week.

Jonathan Stewart, Carolina (vs. Atlanta): Stewart rushed for only 15 yards on seven carries last week against the tough Vikings defense, but he did find his way into the end zone for the second straight week. Look for much more running room this week at home against the Falcons who allowed

Larry Johnson the crack the 100-yard mark in rushing yards for the first time this season.

Bench

Thomas Jones, N.Y. Jets (vs.

Arizona): Jones’ rushing yards have dropped from 101, to 70, to 37 in the first three games. With

Brett Favre having success in the air and Jones putting the ball on the ground last week, look for more passing and less running which doesn’t bode well for Jones.

Steve Slaton, Houston (at Jacksonville): Slaton was named the starter for Houston after a solid performance against the Titans last week as he rushed for 116 yards on only 18 carries including a TD. I like Slaton to produce well over the course of the season, but the Texans offense will struggle in both the passing and running game against the Jaguars. Be happy to own Slaton, just don’t expect big things in week four.

Le’Ron McClain, Baltimore (at

Pittsburgh): Here’s your bye week special to avoid. McClain scored twice against the Browns last week padding his stats to a tempting level. Don’t eat the apple! The Steelers will take care of business on defense and McClain won’t see anything close to those stats this week.

Wide Receivers

Bye Weeks:

Marvin Harrison, Indianapolis and

Reggie Wayne, Indianapolis;

Randy Moss and

Wes Welker, New England;

Courtney Taylor and

Logan Payne, Seattle;

Calvin Johnson and

Roy Williams, Detroit;

Amani Toomer and

Plaxico Burress, N.Y. Giants;

Greg Camarillo and

Ted Ginn Jr., Miami

Studs

Santana Moss, Washington at Dallas

Chad Johnson, Cincinnati vs. Cleveland

T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Cincinnati vs. Cleveland

Terrell Owens, Dallas vs. Washington

Steve Smith, Atlanta at Carolina

Anquan Boldin, Arizona at N.Y. Jets

Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona at N.Y. Jets

Greg Jennings, Green Bay at Tampa Bay

Brandon Marshall, Denver at Kansas City

Andre Johnson, Houston at Jacksonville

Start

DeSean Jackson,

Philadelphia (at

Chicago):

Jackson ONLY caught five passes for 40 yards last week. Don’t fret, he’ll return to the 100-yard mark against a Bears defense that made

Brian Griese look like an all-pro last week. Last I checked,

Donovan McNabb is an all-pro. Good times for

Jackson on the road.

Braylon Edwards, Cleveland (at

Cincinnati): Those of you that own Edwards are certainly frustrated and rightfully so. With the uncertainty at QB for

Cleveland, it’s a risky play to predict positive things for the Browns passing attack. That’s where the Bengals defense comes into play. Assuming Edwards has wiped the butter off his fingers, he’ll slowly start to make amends for fantasy owners across the country this week.

Jerricho Cotchery,

N.Y. Jets (vs.

Arizona): Catching 10 passes in a week is putting in a good day’s work for a WR. Even though Cotchery only totaled 76 yards, those of us in PPR leagues will take the ten catches with a smile. Look for more success from Cotchery and

Brett Favre as they return home looking to wipe the slate clean from their week two home loss to the Patriots.

Justin McCareins,

Tennessee (vs.

Minnesota): Here’s your WR bye week special! With

Justin Gage out with a groin injury, McCareins was the main target for

Kerry Collins last week against the Texans. With the Titans likely to struggle on the ground this week against the Vikings defense,

Collins will be forced to pass and McCareins will be ready.

Bench

Antonio Bryant,

Tampa

Bay (vs.

Green Bay): Here’s a bye week special to avoid. Bryant posted big numbers last week starting for

Joey Galloway catching 10 passes for 138 yards. Even with Galloway’s status in doubt, don’t expect the same success from Bryant as

Brian Griese will distribute the ball to

Ike Hilliard and

Michael Clayton limiting Bryant’s chances for another big game.

Isaac Bruce,

San Francisco (at

New Orleans): Bruce came way down off the high of 153 yards in week two back to the doldrums of two catches for 19 yards in week three. While he may catch more than two passes this week, don’t expect a return to the 100-yard mark anytime soon as the new Mike Martz enjoys the

Frank Gore show in all its splendor.

Bernard Berrian,

Minnesota (at

Tennessee): With

Gus Frerotte at QB, Berrian is no longer someone you can simply write off each week. Unfortunately, Berrian and the Vikings face the Titans this week who will have success stopping the pass and limiting Berrian’s chances.

Chris Chambers,

San Diego (at

Oakland): Three weeks, four TDs for Chambers. Those are nice numbers. Digging a little deeper: three games, six receptions. Those are not so nice numbers. The reception-to-TD ratio is going to start it’s decline this week and with Phillip Rivers likely to play more like the Rivers we’re used to, look for Chambers and the Chargers to struggle in the passing game for the first time this season.

Tight Ends

Bye Weeks:

Dallas Clark, Indianapolis;

Ben Watson, New England;

John Carlson, Seattle;

Michael Gaines, Detroit;

Kevin Boss, N.Y. Giants;

Anthony Fasano, Miami

Studs

Chris Cooley, Washington at Dallas

Jason Witten, Dallas vs. Washington

Kellen Winslow, Cleveland at Cincinnati

Antonio Gates, San Diego at Oakland

Tony Gonzalez, Kansas City vs. Denver

Start

Billy Miller,

New Orleans (vs.

San Francisco): No

Jeremy Shockey, no problem. While Miller doesn’t possess the skills of Shockey, the Saints will continue to move the ball in the air and Miller will fill in nicely. Here’s your bye week special.

L.J. Smith,

Philadelphia (at

Chicago): Check the status of

L.J. Smith who left last week’s game with a back injury. If healthy, a hobbled

Brian Westbrook should translate into plenty of red zone looks for Smith. As often as the Eagles will be in the end zone on Sunday, a healthy Smith makes a solid start.

Bench

Owen Daniels, Houston (at

Jacksonville): Daniels posted solid numbers last week catching four passes for 71 yards including a 32-yard reception. However, look for Daniels and the Texans offense to struggle this week against a tough Jaguars defense who are still riding high from last week’s win over the Colts.

Vernon Davis,

San Francisco (at

New Orleans): Using the same sarcasm as Chandler Bing, “Could you BE a bigger disappointment?”

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