Rodgers a solid start vs. Vikings; Jets RB Jones a nice option

Which quarterback should I start from Aaron Rodgers and Matt Ryan? -- J. Wanser, San Diego, Calif.

Michael Fabiano: Ryan has been on fire in recent weeks, throwing for an average of 266 yards with five touchdown passes in his last three starts. He also has a solid matchup against the Saints, who rank 25th in pass defense. But despite Ryan's immense success and increased fantasy value (I have him ranked in the top 10 among quarterbacks in Week 10), I would still start Rodgers. He is fifth in fantasy points at the position on, and this week's matchup against the Vikings is a positive one. They're 23rd in pass defense and surrendered two touchdowns to Rodgers back in the regular-season opener.

I need to start two running backs from and Jamaal Charles, Jamal Lewis, Steve Slaton and Michael Turner. Help! -- F. McLain, Bronx, N.Y.

2008 statistics:
Att: 148

Yards: 533

TDs: 3

M.F.: Turner is an absolute must-start this week against the Saints, who are allowing an average of 31.2 PPG and 126.7 rushing YPG on the road. The Burner is also a beast on his home field. In three starts at the Georgia Dome, he has rushed for 378 yards on 70 carries (5.4 YPC) with five touchdowns. I'd also take a chance on Lewis based on his matchup against the Broncos on Thursday night. Denver ranks 29th in total defense and will be without LB D.J. Williams (knee) and FS Marlon McCree (ankle).

I need to start three wide receivers from Kevin Curtis, Donald Driver, Wes Welker and Roddy White. I know White is a lock, but who else should I choose? Also, which tight end should I start from Dallas Clark and Owen Daniels? -- S. Santagato, Ringwood, N.J.

M.F.: You're right in that White is a no-brainer, so your final decision comes between the trio of Curtis, Driver and Welker. Based on the matchups, I'd side with Curtis against the Giants and their second-ranked pass defense. Driver put up huge numbers against the Titans last week, and he has a pretty good history against the Vikings. Welker has failed to find the end zone on a consistent basis this season, but he's seeing a ton of targets in New England. He's on pace for 112 catches based on his current numbers. At the tight end position, I'd start Daniels over Clark. Daniels ranks in the top three in fantasy points at his position on and has become an elite option in 2008.

Which two running backs should I start from Matt Forte, Tim Hightower, Chris Johnson and Steven Jackson? Also, I need to start three wide receivers from Donnie Avery, Bernard Berrian, Greg Jennings, Andre Johnson and Derrick Mason. Thanks for the help! -- T. Thompson, South Dakota

M.F.: Johnson has a tough matchup against the Bears, but he's become too valuable to sit in most cases. I think the same holds true for Forte, who continues to be a standout at the running back position. While I do like Hightower, who has taken over the top spot on the depth chart in Arizona, I still think Johnson and Forte are the best bets. As for Jackson, he might not even be active this week against the Jets. Rams coach Jim Haslett said Jackson needs to put in at least one full practice this week or he won't be cleared for the contest. At the wide receiver position, I'd start the underrated Berrian, Jennings and Johnson and sit Avery and Mason.

Who should I use as a flex starter this week: Greg Camarillo, Marques Colston, Hines Ward or Ryan Torain? -- N. Murray, Chicago, Ill.

M.F.: I realize that Colston has done zilch since his return from an injured thumb, but he's got a very attractive matchup this week against the Falcons and their 16th-ranked pass defense. He also had 12 catches and two touchdowns in two starts against them last season, so I'd side with Colston over Camarillo, Ward and Torain.

Should I start Jake Delhomme or Kurt Warner? Also, which three wide receivers should I start from Laveranues Coles, Lee Evans, Brandon Marshall and Steve Smith? -- A. Mayer, Madison, Wis.

M.F.: Unless Warner is injured at some point the rest of the season, you should start him ahead of Delhomme every single week regardless of the matchups. At the wide receiver position, I'd go with Evans, Marshall and Smith. I like Coles' matchup against the Rams, but I still think he's the fourth-best option based on overall value.

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How many trades do you make in your leagues? Also, what position do you target most often in trades? - D. Martin, Coolson, Okla.

M.F.: There's no certain number of trades I make in a week or a month. It all depends on my own rosters strengths and weaknesses, and whether or not another team in my league is a good fit for a deal. Here's an example: In one our in-house league here at, another team was in desperate need of a running back but was solid at wide receiver. Since I had a stacked backfield, I offered Thomas Jones and T.J. Houshmandzadeh for Andre Johnson. The deal was accepted and worked out well for both teams.

I probably make a combined one or two trade offers a week in my 10 leagues, but most of those offers are shot down. I apparently like to low-ball people! And I don't target a particular position, either. It all depends on what that team needs to improve. This week I've been trying to pry LaDainian Tomlinson away from Jim Nantz in his fantasy league (appropriately titled the Masters, after the PGA Tour event), but he hasn't budged. Trades are part of the run of fantasy football, especially when you can make a deal that makes you look like a genius. But don't make trades just for the sake of making them -- all the deals you make should be in an effort to improve your title aspirations.

I need to start two running backs from Thomas Jones, Maurice Jones-Drew and Willie Parker. Help! -- J. May, Conway, Ark.

M.F.: Jones-Drew has the best matchup of this trio, but he's the back I'm sitting. Jones is quietly on pace to finish with 1,202 rushing yards and an impressive 12 total touchdowns, and this week he faces a Rams defense that ranks 29th against the run. Parker, who saw most of the carries and scored a touchdown on Monday night, is also a solid choice against the Colts and their 25th-ranked run defense. Again, I do like Jones-Drew, but he's been in a rut in recent weeks so I trust Jones and Parker more.

What do you think of this trade: Brandon Jacobs and Vincent Jackson for LaDainian Tomlinson? I'm in a 12-team, PPR league and want to make a move for the stretch run. Thanks! -- P. Soucy, Washington

M.F.: As I mentioned in an earlier answer, I've been trying to deal for Tomlinson in one of my leagues. He has some favorable matchups down the stretch, including two starts against the Chiefs, so it makes sense to acquire him. Jackson has quietly put up good numbers for the Chargers, but losing him and Jacobs won't sting if Tomlinson puts up the sort of numbers he's capable of based on his weak upcoming opponents.

Should I start Jonathan Stewart or Ryan Torain? Also, which rookie wide receiver should I start between Donnie Avery and Eddie Royal? -- B. Keane, Spokane, Wash.

M.F.: I've learned that it's next to impossible to predict what Broncos coach Mike Shanahan will do with his backfield. But with Michael Pittman and Andre Hall on injured reserve and Selvin Young still dealing with a troublesome groin, I feel safe in the assumption that Torain will see a lot of carries against the Browns' 28th-ranked run defense. And while I like Stewart's matchup against the Raiders, DeAngelo Williams is still ahead of him on the depth chart and seeing a good numbers of touches each week. Those factors make me side with Torain. As for the wide receiver question, I'd start Avery against a Jets defense that's 27th in receiving yards allowed this season.

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