Fantasy Football News and Notes for October (10-15-08)
By NFL Fantasy Football Analyst Russ Bliss

Bye weeks: Arizona, Atlanta, Jacksonville, Philadelphia

Remember for the best fantasy football advice week in and week out of the season check out our free fantasy football software the best deal anywhere. Here's my take:

Buffalo: QB Trent Edwards has been able to practice and will start week 7. The bye week gave Edwards the time to recover from the concussion he suffered week 5. WR Roscoe Parrish is slated to return to action this week after missing the past few games with a thumb injury.

Miami: RB Patrick Cobbs caught the attention of fantasy owners with his two long receiving touchdowns week 6, but as the 3rd RB he will rarely see time on the field and this past week will probably be a game Cobbs tells his grand kids about.

New England: The trade deadline passed and the Patriots did nothing to address their QB situation. Matt Cassel will remain the starter. No word on whether RB’s Laurence Maroney and Lamont Jordan will be able to play week 7, but even if they do, they shouldn’t be in your starting lineups.

New York Jets: Kicker Mike Nugent will not be able to play week 7. Jay Feely will kick again for the Jets.

Baltimore: RB Willis McGahee aggravated his rib injury week 6 and was pulled early in the second half since the game was a blowout and they didn’t want to risk any further injury. He is not on the early week injury lists and should be fine for week 7.

Cincinnati: QB Ryan Fitzpatrick will start week 7 in place of injured Carson Palmer. Palmer could miss several more weeks and eventually be placed on injured reserve with an elbow injury , you can hear more about Palmer at my fantasy football radio page. After another dismal performance from RB Chris Perry, it is very likely we would have seen him demoted, but now that he missed practice Wednesday with a shoulder injury, you can count on the carries this week to be split up between Cedric Benson and Kenny Watson. Since Watson is the better overall RB with good receiving skills, he’d be my bet to have the most fantasy value both this week and going forward.

Cleveland: TE Kellen Winslow is questionable for week 7 but I expect he will play. He’s likely going to be called a game time decision. By the way, where have these Browns been? Nice to finally see Derek Anderson, Braylon Edwards, and Jamal Lewis get things going and hopefully it’s a sign of better things to come from those who have been suffering with them so far in 2008.

Pittsburgh: RB Willie Parker aggravated his knee injury in practice this week and his status for week 7 is now in doubt. If he can’t start Mewelde Moore would go in his place. The bye week should have allowed QB Ben Roethlisberger’s injured shoulder to heal up at least some. Kicker Jeff Reed has a calf strain but is expected to be able to kick week 7. But it bears noting that any leg injury and kickers is a bad combo and you may want to grab another kicker from your waiver wires. There are usually a lot of good ones to choose from.

Houston: RB Ahman Green played week 6 but was limited in practice Wednesday because of a foot injury. It’s not believed to be serious, but Green just never seems to be able to stay healthy and isn’t even worth handcuffing to Steve Slaton.

Indianapolis: RB Joseph Addai has a partial tear of his hamstring and will be out the next 2-4 weeks. Backup RB Dominic Rhodes will start in his place in the meantime.Rhodes should be picked up in all leagues. RB Mike Hart suffered a torn ACL and was placed on injured reserve. The Colts signed two RB’s to their active roster, Clifton Dawson, who played for the Colts last year, and undrafted rookie Chad Simpson.

Jacksonville: WR Mike Walker’s knee sprain will keep him out a couple more weeks. RB Fred Taylor is expected to be fine when the Jags return from their bye in week 8. He took a helmet to helmet hit week 6 but did not suffer a concussion.

Tennessee: WR Justin Gage will likely be listed as Questionable to play week 7 because of a knee injury. He did not practice Wednesday and his status for week 7 is in doubt. Fellow WR Justin McCareins was limited in practice but should be able to play this week. RB LenDale White’s shoulder injury isn’t serious, but could limit him in practice this week. White is quickly being eclipsed by rookie Chris Johnson.

Denver: RB Michael Pittman solidified his spot as the primary RB after a solid week 6 performance. Backup Andre Hall didn’t even get a carry. No word on whether RB Selvin Young will be able to play week 7 as he recovers from a groin injury. He was limited in practice Wednesday and even if he can play, he’ll be behind Pittman. WR Eddie Royal practiced and appears good to go Monday night. WR Brandon Stokley suffered a concussion week 6 and his status for week 7 is in doubt after not practicing Wednesday. TE Tony Scheffler was limited in practice but is not likely to play week 7.

Kansas City: RB Larry Johnson has a December court date stemming from an assault charge and whether it could lead to a suspension before the end of the season is unknown. QB Brodie Croyle is expected to start week 7, but like I’ve said before, the Chiefs QB situation will be a week to week watch since none of the QB’s are really any good, nor are they able to stay healthy.

Oakland: So much for opening up the offense and passing more. After a horrible game by JaMarcus Russell the team has said they will scale back their offense to prevent putting too much pressure on him. Isn’t that what former head coach Lane Kiffin was doing and the team said it was holding Russell back? Expect the running game to be featured more going forward. On a positive note both RB’s Darren McFadden and Justin Fargas made it thru week 6 without aggravating their respective injuries and both should be fine for week 7.

San Diego: Like I said last week, amazing the difference in what players say after a win as opposed to a loss. LT says his injured toe feels the best it has felt all season. WR Chris Chambers is expected to play week 7. He missed week 6 because of an ankle injury.

Dallas: QB Tony Romo has a broken pinkie finger on his throwing hand. Initial reports said he would be out until after the Cowboys bye in week 10, but a phone call from Brett Favre encouraging Romo to play thru the injury has Romo possibly being able to play week 7. Romo has told coaches he can play and threw on the side Wednesday, but did not participate in practice itself. Wade Phillips says Romo must complete a practice if he wants to play week 7. If Romo doesn’t by Friday, Brad Johnson will start in his place. The Cowboys also acquired WR Roy Williams from the Detroit Lions just before the NFL’s trade deadline Tuesday. It may take a week or two before Williams is starting opposite Terrell Owens, but this deals a big blow to the fantasy sleeper values of Patrick Crayton and Miles Austin. RB Felix Jones will miss the next few games with a partially torn hamstring. Tashard Choice becomes the backup to Marion Barber. Choice isn’t the slashing type of runner Jones is, but is more like Barber: an all-purpose bowling ball type of back and Barber owners would be wise to get him as insurance for Barber.

New York Giants: QB Eli Manning suffered a chest injury Monday night but it was minor and won’t cause him to miss any time. Kicker Lawrence Tynes is reportedly set to resume the kicking duties for New York week 7. Tynes had been out since preseason with a knee injury. The team will probably carry John Carney, who has been kicking, and kicking very well in place of Tynes, thru this weekend and if Tynes suffers no setbacks or struggles this week Carney will likely be released.

Philadelphia: The Eagles are off this week and RB Brian Westbrook is expected to be back after the Eagles return from their bye. WR Kevin Curtis is also expected back week 8 as well. RB Tony Hunt was released.

Washington: Backup RB Ladell Betts has a knee sprain and will miss several games. Rick Cartwright will be the backup for week 7 but the team signed free agent RB Shaun Alexander and since he is familiar with Jim Zorn’s offense from their days together in Seattle it should only be a week before Xander is the top backup to Clinton Portis. Not likely he has any fantasy value, but he’s worth the handcuff if you have the roster space.

Chicago: RB Matt Forte suffered a hand injury week 6 but it is considered minor and won’t prevent him from playing. WR Brandon Lloyd is likely to miss week 7 with a knee injury and could miss a few more games as well.

Detroit: Jon Kitna was placed on injured reserve with a back injury. Dan Orlovsky starts at QB week 7. If Orlovsky doesn’t show the team some signs of improvement though it will a temporary position for him as the team will turn to last year’s 2nd round draft pick Drew Stanton. After trading WR Roy Williams to Dallas, the team promoted WR Mike Furrey to the starting spot with Shaun McDonald working out of the slot. Both, however, have limited fantasy value. WR Calvin Johnson did not practice Wednesday because of a concussion suffered week 6. His status for week 7 is unknown. If he can’t play, Furrey and McDonald would both start. RB Kevin Smith suffered a shoulder injury week 6 and did not practice Wednesday. If he can’t play, Rudi Johnson would get almost all the carries.

Green Bay: Backup RB Kregg Lumpkin was placed on injured reserve. The Packers signed RB DeShawn Wynn to take his roster spot. Wynn actually started a couple of games last year for Green Bay and looked good but was injury prone and eventually placed on I.R. himself in 2007. Given the struggles of Ryan Grant, and the erratic play of primary backup Brandon Jackson, Wynn could make a nice sleeper going forward. Assuming he can stay healthy that is.

Minnesota: Despite being questionable last week with a knee injury and limited in practice last week WR Bernard Berrian played and had a great game week 6. He likely will be limited in practice again this week, but should be fine to start. No word on whether WR Sidney Rice’s knee injury will keep him out another week or not, but until he puts in a full week of practice I wouldn’t count on him.

Atlanta: The trend held true for RB Michael Turner week 6. He struggled to produce much of anything against a good Bears run defense. In 3 games against good run defenses (Tampa Bay, Carolina, and Chicago) Turner has 58 carries for 152 yards and no touchdowns. In 3 games against bad run defenses (Detroit, Kansas City, Green Bay) Turner has 71 carries for 445 yards and 6 touchdowns.

Carolina: WR Muhsin Muhammad is day to day with a knee sprain. It’s hoped he will play week 7. WR D.J. Hackett is likely to miss week 7 with a knee injury. The time share between RB’s DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart favored Williams week 6, but neither RB was productive and it is likely to be a situation where the hottest hand will get the majority of the carries on a game to game basis.

New Orleans: WR Marques Colston is expected back week 7, but may be limited some. Colston practiced last week but was a surprise inactive for week 6, which indicates the team is being cautious with their star WR. TE Jeremy Shockey is not expected to play week 7 and he may not be back until after the Saints bye in week 9. RB Reggie Bush missed practice Wednesday with swelling on his knee, and while his status for week 7 is unknown, I expect he will play. WR David Patten practiced Wednesday and will be able to play week 7. The team released WR Terrence Copper.

Tampa Bay: If WR Joey Galloway can practice this week he’ll be active for week 7. Even if he is active he likely will be limited and I wouldn’t count on him. Galloway has been out since suffering a foot sprain in week 1. Jeff Garcia appears to have solidified his spot as the starting QB, but I get the sneaky feeling this situation between him, Brian Griese, and Luke McCown isn’t finished yet and will be an issue after the first poor game Garcia has. RB Earnest Graham played fullback almost exclusively week 6, but that was due to injuries and the team has signed Jameel Cook to be their new FB. Graham will go back to his time share with Warrick Dunn. RB Carnell “Cadillac” Williams is eligible to come off the PUP (Physically Unable to Perform) list this week but is not expected to be activated in the next week. Tampa has until week 10 to decide to activate Williams or place him on injured reserve. Injured reserve is more likely.

Arizona: The Cards are off this week and expect to get back WR Anquan Boldin, whos one heck of a fantasy football pick when they return from bye week 8. His return will push the value of Steve Breaston down.

St. Louis: QB Marc Bulger injured a finger week 6 but will start week 7. Backup RB Brian Leonard was placed on injured reserve with a shoulder injury. With Antonio Pittman out another 1-2 weeks, Travis Minor is the top backup and the team signed RB Ken Darby. WR Drew Bennett will miss another week or two with his foot injury. WR Keenan Burton is expected to return week 7.

San Francisco: WR Bryant Johnson has been very limited in games because of hamstring and groin injuries. TE Vernon Davis had his best game of the season week 6 but I doubt if that’s a sign he will be reliable from here on out.

Seattle: QB Matt Hasselbeck has a bulging disc injury in his back and will not play week 7. This could be something that keeps him out longer than just one game as the back has been a concern since preseason. Seneca Wallace is expected to start in his place, but Wallace has had calf injury problems this season and because of them he couldn’t start week 6 for Hasselbeck. If Wallace can’t make it thru practice this week it could be Charlie Frye starting again. WR Deion Branch will likely miss week 7, he did not practice Wednesday. Branch missed week 6 with a heel injury. Koren Robinson was unable to practice Wednesday and it appears Keary Colbert could start at WR opposite Bobby Engram this week. Preseason wonder-RB Justin Forsett was re-signed this week, but he is just expected to assume kick return duties for recently released WR Michael Bumpus.

Thats a wrap on this week and for more information check  out some of the busiest fantasy football forums where members are active and willing to give free advice.