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The Rookie Report: News and Notes

Welcome everyone to the Week 7 installment to the 2008 Rookie Report. Each week during the regular season, the report will cover trends, news items and analysis of notable performances by the NFL’s 2008 Rookie Class to assist in your pursuit of dynasty championship gold.

In this week’s edition we will cover and analyze various news and notes items pertaining to this year’s rookie class. So let’s begin …

QB Matt Ryan,

Atlanta Falcons

Ryan continues to be a huge surprise this season as he has lead the Falcons to a 4-2 record. It is not a surprise that Ryan would succeed in the NFL; however, no one in their right mind (except the die hard Falcons fans) could have expected his stellar performance so early in his rookie season. Ryan was masterful on Sunday with his control of the game leading his Falcons to set up the game-winning field goal. Over the past two games, Ryan has put up 496 passing yards, three touchdowns and only one interception. While rookie quarterbacks have a tendency to be inconsistent, Ryan looks ready to contribute to his owner’s fantasy squads.

QB Joe Flacco,

Baltimore Ravens

Flacco continues to look more and more lost as the season continues. Through the first five games, Flacco has thrown only one touchdown to his seven interceptions. Coach John Harbaugh continues to reiterate that Flacco is his starting quarterback; however, unless Flacco steps up his play and stops turning the ball over, he is going to find his way to the bench in favor of Troy Smith.

CB Mike Jenkins,

Dallas Cowboys

Following Pacman Jones’ minimum four-game suspension for being his usual idiot self, Jenkins takes over the starting cornerback slot until Terence Newman returns in a few weeks. Jenkins is someone to watch in case you need a bye week or injury fill-in for deep leagues.

SS Chris Horton,

Washington Redskins

Last week, the Rookie Report featured Horton as someone to put on your radar in IDP dynasty leagues. This week we are sounding the sirens as he is a must pickup. The Redskins put SS Reed Doughty on injured reserve this week, so it appears that Horton will be on the field full-time. In the past two weeks, Horton has been stellar, recording 18 tackles. The Redskins continue to use Horton up at the line to stuff the run and his tackle numbers should continue to remain strong as a result.

WR Jordy Nelson,

Green Bay Packers

Nelson has quietly started to show a grasp for the

Green Bay offense over the past few weeks as the third wideout. He has totaled four catches in three of the past four weeks in mostly three wideout sets. While his value in 2008 is limited unless either Greg Jennings or Donald Driver get injured, Nelson is a solid player to have stashed away on the bench for the future in dynasty leagues.

RB’s Felix Jones/Tashard Choice,

Dallas Cowboys

Following Sunday’s hamstring injury, Jones is expected to miss at least the next two weeks with the strain. With Jones out of the picture, fellow rookie Tashard Choice will step in to be Marion Barber III’s primary backup.

RB Ryan Torain

Before Denver’s game last week, Torain was spotted doing drills on the field and looked to be close to returning from his elbow injury. It is likely that Torain will be held back till after the Broncos bye week. Despite Torain’s pending return, it is difficult to get overly excited about his fantasy prospects given Denver’s muddled depth chart at running back.

RB Mike Hart,

Indianapolis Colts

The Colts put Mike Hart on the injured reserve list this week following an injury to his ACL. With Joseph Addai out for 2-4 weeks, it would have been nice to see what Hart could do in the Colts offense. Dynasty owners should keep an eye on Hart’s injury status to evaluate owning him as his knee could require surgery and have long-term consequences.

WR Limas Sweed,

Pittsburgh Steelers

Sweed surpassed Dallas Baker as the fourth wideout on the Steelers depth chart following Baker’s injury. Despite this “promotion”, Sweed’s owners will continue to be disappointed as he continues to struggle with route running, catching the ball and blocking assignments.

Well that wraps up this week’s edition of the Rookie Report. If you have any comments on this week’s article, please see the Article Discussions forum in the Shark Tank.

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