DeShaun Foster vs. ATL
In what was a bad matchup on paper, Roethlisberger torched the Ravens for five touchdowns on Monday night. Roethlisberger had a similar performance in week 1 against the Browns, throwing for 161 yards and four touchdowns. Roethlisberger has quietly thrown for 20 touchdowns this season and is matched up against a Browns defense that is last in the NFL against the pass, giving up 276.6 yards per game and 20 touchdown passes.
With Adrian Peterson's record-setting performance last week, Lynch's 153-yard, two-touchdown performance (one passing) was largely overlooked. Lynch has run especially well against poor rushing defenses, and this week he faces a Dolphins defense that allows 160.5 yards per game on the ground and has surrendered the second-most rushing touchdowns in the NFL. Look for another big performance out of Lynch this week.
To call Brees' first four games terrible would be far too kind. However, the NFL is a long season and perhaps no player has turned around his season more than Brees. During the Saints' four-game winning streak, Brees has averaged 311.5 passing yards and almost three touchdowns per game. While the Rams are ranked 11th against the pass, they have given up more than twice as many touchdowns (12) as interceptions (5) and have allowed a quarterback rating of 92.2. We see Brees and the Saints continuing their hot streak with another impressive game.
McGahee had 111 total yards in his first meeting against the Bengals and has been one of the few bright spots for the struggling Ravens offense. The Bengals are 28th against the run and have allowed 100-yard rushers in six of eight games. With the struggles of Steve McNair and the importance of this game to the Ravens' season, look for McGahee to be a workhorse against the Bengals and break the 100-yard barrier.
Cedric Benson vs. OAK
Benson has been one of the biggest busts in fantasy this year. He only has one game with more than 100 yards this season. If Benson were ever to have a breakout game, this is the matchup in which to do it. The Raiders allow 152.5 rush yards per game on a league high 5.1 yards per carry. The Raiders have also surrendered a NFL-high 12 rushing touchdowns this season.
Donald Lee vs. MIN
Lee has played well lately for the Packers as Brett Favre continues to have a very good season. In two of his last three games, Lee has had at least 75 yards receiving and had four catches for 66 yards in his first matchup against the Vikings. Against a strong Minnesota rushing defense, look for Favre to throw the ball a lot, and Lee to be one of the many beneficiaries against the Vikings' 31st-ranked pass defense.
Priest Holmes vs. DEN
With Larry Johnson out, Holmes will likely get enough carries to warrant consideration as a play this week. He certainly has the matchup to have a good game. The Broncos are surrendering 161.5 yards per game on the ground, good for last in the NFL. If Holmes is able to get enough work, look for him to be productive for a fantasy team this week.
Fred Taylor vs. TEN
Taylor continues to be the No. 1 back in Jacksonville and is more important than ever now that David Garrard is out with a high ankle sprain. However, Taylor is yet to score a rushing touchdown this season and is matched up against the No. 1-rated run defense in the NFL. Taylor's first performance against the Titans in Week 1 netted just 16 yards on six carries. Look for Taylor to struggle again in what should be a defensive battle.
Vince Young vs. JAC
The Titans continue to win despite Young's dreadful numbers. In seven games, Young has accounted for just five total touchdowns and has less combined yards rushing and passing than Vikings rookie running back Adrian Peterson. Don't expect Young to break out against the Jaguars, who were embarrassed last week by the Saints. In his career against the Jaguars, Young has just one passing touchdown and four interceptions with a quarterback rating of just 43.5 in three games. He also has just 40 rushing yards and one touchdown against Jacksonville. Both defenses should dominate this game.
Ryan Grant vs. MIN
Grant appears to be the latest Packer auditioning for the starting running back job and in the last two weeks has been very productive. He is averaging 102 total yards a game, including a 104-yard rushing performance against Denver. However, this week he faces a Viking defense that is second in the NFL against the run, allowing just 70.4 yards per game while leading the NFL in yards per carry allowed at a miniscule 2.8. Expect the Packers to take advantage of the Vikings' week pass defense, as they did earlier this season.
Jamal Lewis vs. PIT
Lewis had perhaps one of the strangest stat lines of the season last week, rushing 20 times for 37 yards and four touchdowns. That is twice as many rushing touchdowns as this week's opponent, the Steelers, have given up all season. In the first meeting this season, Lewis was held to just 35 yards in 11 carries, and the Steelers, who are only giving up 76 yards a game on the ground, should hold Lewis in check again.
Rudi Johnson vs. BAL
Until this season, Johnson had been one of the most consistent and safest runners in fantasy football. He had at least 1,300 yards and 12 rushing touchdowns each of the last three seasons. This season, which has been limited by injuries, Johnson does not have a rushing touchdown and has fewer total yards rushing in five games than Adrian Peterson had last week. We look for Johnson's struggles to continue against a Ravens defense that, while surrendering five touchdown passes last week, held Pittsburgh's Willie Parker to just 42 yards on 23 carries.
Warrick Dunn vs. CAR
Minnesota defense vs. GB
Minnesota has shown the last two seasons that it might have the NFL's best run defense. Last week the Vikings held LaDainian Tomlinson to just 40 yards. But as great as they are against the run, they have been just as bad against the pass. This week they face a Brett Favre-led Packers team that threw for 322 yards and two touchdowns earlier this season and is second in the league in passing yards per game. Don't expect the Packers to challenge the Vikings run defense but to attack and score through the air.
San Francisco defense vs. SEA
The Seahawks behind Matt Hasselbeck have scored more than 30 points in their last two games and gained 371 total yards in a 23-3 win earlier this season at San Francisco. The 49ers are anemic offensively, so expect Seattle to challenge a defense that has surrendered 28 points per game over its last three games.