Fantasy matchups: Anderson, Palmer are nice options

By Derick Moss

Indianapolis at Carolina
1 p.m., CBS


Suit 'em up: It appears Joseph Addai will have his workload lessened as Kenton Keith steals carries. Addai's still a No. 1 option, but Keith is a fine flex play against the league's 18th-ranked rush defense.

Sit 'em down: It's tough to sit any Colt any week, but monitor the progress of Marvin Harrison, who missed last week's game and Wednesday's practice. Take a shot at Anthony Gonzalez if Harrison's out.


Suit 'em up: Even with a week off, the Panthers have serious questions heading into this game. DeShaun Foster missed practice this week, so DeAngelo Williams becomes a better play, particularly coming off a 121-yard effort last week. Steve Smith is a good play, and tight end Jeff King might be worth a bye-week start.

Sit 'em down: Despite David Carr's nice career numbers against Indy, he will sit while Vinny Testaverde starts against the Colts. It's probably best to stay away from both.

Detroit at Chicago
1 p.m., FOX


Suit 'em up: All of the sudden, the Lions have a ground game, and Kevin Jones is once again a viable option. Calvin Johnson has only 15 touches this year, but three touchdowns. He should get more involved in the offense as the season progresses.

Sit 'em down: The Lions passing game has slowed considerably, and Mike Furrey is paying the price. Tatum Bell is now behind T.J. Duckett on the depth chart, and neither is a good option unless Jones is hurt.


Suit 'em up: Brian Griese has seven touchdown passes in four weeks and will get chances against Detroit. Adrian Peterson is forcing his way into more playing time as Cedric Benson continues to struggle. Consider Benson just a shade more valuable now.

Sit 'em down: Devin Hester is being worked into the offense more each week, but he's only going to get about 4-5 chances a week.

Pittsburgh at Cincinnati
1 p.m., CBS


Suit 'em up: Plenty of points to be had in this one. Just about all the Steelers, if healthy, are worth a start against a bad Cincy defense.

Sit 'em down: Check the status of Hines Ward before the game. He should be fine, but make sure you don't get caught with a zero.


Suit 'em up: The trio of Carson Palmer, T.J. Houshmandzadeh and Chad Johnson is a great play again. The Bengals need a third receiver, and Glenn Holt did catch four balls for 54 yards last week. But only if you're desperate.

Sit 'em down: Kenny Watson likely will start and get most of the workload for the Bengals this week as Rudi Johnson continues to battle a bad hamstring. Even if Johnson plays Sunday, he'd likely be limited.

New York Giants vs. Miami (in London)
1 p.m., FOX


Suit 'em up: Against a putrid defense, all the Giants are good options. Brandon Jacobs seems healthy and has a clear edge over Derrick Ward in the backfield. The Giants defense is a good play this week, as well.

Sit 'em down: Check Ward's status, and don't bother picking up Ruben Droughns. Steve Smith is getting healthy, but he's still a fourth or fifth option in the passing game.


Suit 'em up: With Ronnie Brown out for the season, Jesse Chatman should be claimed in all formats and is a decent play. Marty Booker is the team's No. 1 receiver, but Ted Ginn will get a chance against a very average Giants secondary and might be worth a look.

Sit 'em down: Patrick Cobbs is Chatman's backup, but he's not an option. David Martin is hurting and isn't an option even if healthy.

Oakland at Tennessee
1 p.m., CBS


Suit 'em up: The Titans are 24th against the pass, making Daunte Culpepper at least a No. 2 QB option, assuming he starts over Josh McCown. Ronald Curry is also a good play.

Sit 'em down: Three things go against starting Lamont Jordan this week: 1) Although he isn't listed on the injury report, he's had a back. 2) The Titans allow only 59.7 ypg on the ground, tops in the league. 3) Dominic Rhodes is getting increased playing time.


Suit 'em up: LenDale White has four touchdowns in his last five games, and the Raiders allowing 140 YPG against the run. Roydell Williams is establishing himself as a legit No. 2 receiver. It's a matchup for the Titans defense.

Sit 'em down: Vince Young is likely to start Sunday, but don't expect too much through the air against a solid Raiders pass defense. Chris Brown is still hurting, and even if he plays won't get enough touches to be worth starting.

Cleveland at St. Louis
1 p.m., CBS


Suit 'em up: The Rams are a bad defensive bunch, so most of the Browns are worth playing. And if you haven't noticed, Derek Anderson has more touchdown passes (14) than Peyton Manning (11).

Sit 'em down: Check Jamal Lewis' status on gameday -– he's got a bum foot. His backup situation is interesting in that Jason Wright and Jerome Harrison are battling for playing time. Wright is a little safer bet, but keep an eye on Harrison.


Suit 'em up: The Rams have been beaten up at key positions, but they're getting healthy and face a sub par defense this week. Steven Jackson actually told fantasy owners to start him this week, so who are we to argue? Torry Holt should have a nice game, as well.

Sit 'em down: Even against Cleveland's anemic pass rush, it might be a good idea to sit Marc Bulger another week until he shows something. Even though he's healthy (we presume), he turned the ball over five times last week.

Philadelphia at Minnesota
1 p.m., FOX


Suit 'em up: Kevin Curtis's two big receiving days came against poor defenses, and Donovan McNabb gets to face a Vikings secondary that gives up yards in chunks. Brian Westbrook is always a must-play, but he's facing a tight rush defense that has allowed one rushing touchdown this year.

Sit 'em down: Reggie Brown continues to drop balls at an alarming rate, and his play is a big reason why the offense has underachieved this year. L.J. Smith is returning from a knee injury and shouldn't be an option this week.


Suit 'em up: Is it possible to start a Vikings quarterback this season? Probably not. But Kelly Holcomb is likely to start Sunday ahead of the awful Tarvaris Jackson, who has a broken finger. If you're desperate -– and I mean you have no other choices -– consider Holcomb.

Sit 'em down: Even though Adrian Peterson leads the league in rushing, Chester Taylor is getting touches (13 last week) and is relatively effective. But he's nursing a groin strain and Peterson is going to get more carries until the Vikings are out of it in the NFC North.

Buffalo at New York Jets
4:05 p.m., CBS


Suit 'em up: Trent Edwards is officially the starting quarterback and is officially a quality option against a porous Jets defense. Edwards has gotten Lee Evans involved in the offense.

Sit 'em down: With the Bills giving Marshawn Lynch plenty of carries, and Evans becoming more involved, there aren't enough balls headed toward Josh Reed or Roscoe Parrish to make them viable options.


Suit 'em up: Just when you think Chad Pennington is about to be benched, he gets matchups against Cincinnati and Buffalo, the latter of which is 30th in the league against the pass. So start Laveranues Coles and maybe Jerricho Cotchery, as well.

Sit 'em down: Thomas Jones managed only 67 yards against Cincy, and even though Buffalo's just as good a matchup, it's hard to recommend Jones. If Pennington struggles in the first half, Kellen Clemens might enter the game, but that's a risky proposition on which to base a fantasy start.

Jacksonville at Tampa Bay
4:05 p.m., CBS


Suit 'em up: This looks like a 10-7 game in the making. With David Garrard out, the Jags turn to Quinn Gray and the tandem of Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew. Don't pick up Quinn, but Taylor gets an edge over MJD because the latter has a mild knee sprain. Monitor his status. The Bucs are 21st against the run.

Sit 'em down: The Jags receivers don't do much with Garrard in, but they won't get any help with Gray under center.


Suit 'em up: The Jags are 17th against the pass, so continue to think of Jeff Garcia as a solid quarterback option, maybe even a bye week No. 1. Teams are doubling Joey Galloway, and Ike Hilliard (nine catches last week) is taking advantage. Earnest Graham won't get the nearly 200 yards he had last week, but he's still a nice option. The Bucs defense is a great play this week.

Sit 'em down: After last week's performance by Graham, Michael Bennett isn't going to get touches in bunches just yet. Despite Maurice Stovall's touchdown last week, he's no fantasy option.

Texans at Chargers
4:05 p.m., CBS


Suit 'em up: Matt Schaub practiced some this week, but is a gameday decision. If he can't go, Sage Rosenfels is the starter, and he was great last week. If you can peg the starter on Sunday morning, the Chargers pass defense is average at best. Andre Davis and Kevin Walter are both decent options.

Sit 'em down: Ahman Green is limping along, and Ron Dayne is just not a NFL starting running back. Look for other options this week.


Suit 'em up: A 198-yard, four-touchdown effort last week against Oakland should get LaDainian Tomlinson going. Chris Chambers will fit comfortably into the offense, and he'll probably be about as valuable as Vincent Jackson going forward.

Sit 'em down: It's hard to sit any Chargers this week against an underachieving Texans defense, but if you were starting Craig Davis for some reason, bench him now that Chambers has taken his spot in the offense.

Saints at 49ers
4:05 p.m., FOX


Suit 'em up: The 49ers are decent against the pass, but not as good against the run, meaning Reggie Bush will be a No. 1 option again this week. Drew Brees remains a decent play as he rebounds from a slow start, but Marques Colston is the only receiver consistent enough to merit a start.

Sit 'em down: Lance Moore might be a favorite of Brees, but he's not a fantasy option yet. Aaron Stecker has not been a fantasy option since Deuce McAllister went down, and won't be this week, either.


Suit 'em up: Frank Gore is missing some practice, but has a great matchup this week. This could be a week that Vernon Davis finally breaks out -– he won't get many better matchups.

Sit 'em down: The good news? Alex Smith is likely to start Sunday against a suspect Saints pass defense. The bad news? He's just not having a good enough season to justify a start. Ashley Lelie might start Sunday, but he's the 49ers' third option, at best.

Redskins at Patriots
4:05 p.m., FOX


Suit 'em up: Two good defenses, but the difference is New England's incredible offense. Washington's best chance is to control the clock and hit the occasional big play. Clinton Portis has been up and down, but he'll get chances this week. And go ahead and start Jason Campbell -– if it's a blowout, he could get stats in garbage time.

Sit 'em down: Santana Moss has two catches in two weeks, and won't get many open looks Sunday. And as good as the Washington defense has been, don't chance it this week.


Suit 'em up: Start Tom Brady, Randy Moss, Wes Welker and Laurence Maroney, though it's a tough matchup.

Sit 'em down: Assuming the Pats are held to 30 or so points, Donte' Stallworth is less of an option than some. But the third receiver on the Patriots is better than the first on some teams.

Green Bay at Denver
Monday, 8:15 p.m., ESPN


Suit 'em up: Against a terrific set of cornerbacks, the Packers might actually run more this week, meaning DeShawn Wynn could be in for a nice game.

Sit 'em down: Brett Favre is still a decent play, but don't expect big numbers this week. He also tweaked a shoulder in practice, so temper your expectations. Koren Robinson won't be a factor just yet, and Donald Driver seems like the safest play at receiver.


Suit 'em up: The Packers have decent corners and get to the quarterback, yet rank 22nd against the pass. Jay Cutler had a nice game against Pittsburgh and could continue that this week. Brandon Marshall is a good play, but Brandon Stokley may be even better if Marshall is still distracted by his off-field problems this week.

Sit 'em down: Travis Henry has bruised ribs, never good for a running back. The Pack is 11th against the rush, so Selvin Young might not even be a great play in Henry's place.

For more information, please visit

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.