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Start/Bench – Week 5

Week 5 is here and it’s time to reevaluate our ‘Studs.’ Up to this point I’ve been relying on history and preseason draft position and expectations to determine who should be on the ‘Studs’ list. Well, with a quarter of the fantasy season in the books it’s time to let the players’ production do the talking and tell us who the real ‘Studs’ are. But keep in mind, a three or four game drought will not necessarily trump several years of elite production. In those cases, a few more games may be needed in order to determine expulsion from the ‘Studs’ list. 


Player rankings for quarterbacks are through Week 4 and can be found at


Tom Brady
Drew Brees
Robert Griffin III
*New Addition*
Eli Manning
Peyton Manning
*New Addition*
Cam Newton
Aaron Rodgers
Ben Roethlisberger
Matt Ryan
Matthew Stafford


Tony Romo, Dallas – Romo has always been a hotly debated member of the ‘Studs’ list and has finally worked his way off of the list. After a stellar Week 1 it appeared that Romo was about to quiet his critics, but that would not be the case as Weeks 2-4 would bring only two touchdown passes and seven interceptions. He is currently the 22nd ranked quarterback, averaging 16.1 points per game. It’s not all Romo’s fault but we could care less. See ya!

Philip Rivers, San Diego – Currently ranked as the 26th best quarterback by, Rivers is averaging 14.7 fantasy points per game. Rivers finished 2011 barely inside the Top 10 fantasy quarterbacks at No. 9. While I appreciate past performance, you can’t have 25 quarterbacks averaging more fantasy points than you and still be considered a ‘Stud.’ See ya!


Robert Griffin III, Washington – He’s the No. 1 ranked quarterback and is averaging 30.2 points per game, while never scoring less than 25.55 points in a game. I know you guys and gals wanted him moved to the ‘Studs’ list after his first two games, but I needed to see more. I’ve seen enough. Welcome aboard!


Peyton Manning, Denver – After scoring 24.95 points in Week 1 and 9.95 points in Week 2 I had to take a wait-and-see approach with Manning. But after seeing him light up the Texans, who are the No. 1 defense in fantasy versus quarterbacks, in Week 3 then follow that up with his best performance to date versus the Raiders in Week 4, I have no choice but to welcome Peyton back to the ‘Studs’ list. Nothing like Peyton Manning, the ‘Studs’ list and tapenade, together. Welcome back!


Christian Ponder, Minnesota vs. Tennessee: Who would have thought that Christian Ponder would only have 111 yards passing with zero touchdowns and yet the Vikings would still defeat the Lions? Crazy. What’s even crazier is that Ponder has yet to throw an interception in four games this season while having two multi-touchdown games. This week’s matchup doesn’t get much tastier than a visit from the Titans defense which has allowed 10 touchdown passes while only picking off one pass. Jerome Simpson returned last week and with one week under his belt he should start to emerge as a legit downfield threat for the Vikings. 

Joe Flacco, Baltimore at Kansas City: I know that many of you will be up in arms over Flacco not making the ‘Studs’ list, but hear me out. Flacco has feasted on some of the most generous defenses versus quarterbacks in the league (Cincinnati, New England and Cleveland) while throwing for 232 yards with one touchdown and one interception versus his lone tough matchup versus the Eagles. This week is another one of those easy matchups as he’ll be facing the third most generous defense when it comes to quarterbacks.

Andy Dalton, Cincinnati vs. Miami: Dalton has been hot over the last three weeks throwing for over 300 yards twice while throwing eight touchdowns to only three interceptions. This week he’ll get to face a Dolphins defense that have given up three straight 300-yard games. BenJarvus Green-Ellis has been less than impressive, so expect Cincy to have to win this one through the air.


Kevin Kolb, Arizona at St. Louis: Don’t get caught up in Kolb’s performance over the last two games and be lulled into starting him, it’s a trap! Kolb will be facing a Rams defense that hasn’t allowed over 206 yards passing since Week 2, while only allowing two touchdown passes on the season and picking off eight.

Mark Sanchez/Tim Tebow, New York Jets vs. Houston: Over his last three games Sanchez has had a 138-yard passing game and a 103-yard passing game while throwing two touchdowns and three interceptions. Now this week he gets to face the No. 1 defense versus quarterbacks in fantasy, the Houston Texans. And should Tim Tebow somehow get into this game and rally the Jets to victory, it’ll be the ‘Studs’ list for him in Week 6.

Matt Cassel, Kansas City vs. Baltimore: What’s the last thing a quarterback who has thrown five touchdowns and seven interceptions needs? How about a visit from the Ravens?! The Ravens have only allowed two passing TDs this season while picking off four. There’s blood in the water as there has been talk in Kansas City about benching Cassel and the Ravens can smell it.

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