In addition to our weekly Waiver Wire posts, we’ll also be providing valuable matchup analysis each week along with our suggestions on who to start and who to bench. If you have any additional matchup questions, or you are not sure who to start this week, feel free to post them in our Fantasy Football Forum.

Indianapolis (5-0) at St. Louis (0-6)
Indianapolis YARDS/GAME RANK St. Louis YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 192.4 9th Passing Defense 252.0 27th
Rushing Defense 103.2 14th Rushing Defense 132.5 26th
Passing Offense 329.0 1st Passing Offense 186.8 24th
Rushing Offense 78.8 29th Rushing Offense 104.0 17th
Fantasy Impact: The Colts are still unbeaten, Peyton Manning had two weeks to watch films, and no, he is not looking ahead to week 8. Manning wants to win each game and this week he will do it the way he wins every game – throwing for touchdowns and a ton of yards. Reggie Wayne and Dallas Clark are very solid plays this week but both Joseph Addai and Donald Brown could have a field day going against a run defense that gave up 166 yards last week. The long time knock on the Colts has been their run defense and since Steven Jackson is the only offensive weapon the Rams have, that could mean good things for Jackson owners (sorry no endzone last week – predictions are 5 for 7 on the year now). Marc Bulger is back and playing well however, no word yet on Donnie Avery. Avery caught a touchdown for the second straight week gave Rams fans a glimmer of hope for their passing attack. Then he took it away with injuring himself in the first quarter as well.
New England (4-2) at Tampa Bay (0-6)
New England YARDS/GAME RANK Tampa Bay YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 180.5 6th Passing Defense 198.5 11th
Rushing Defense 112.8 20th Rushing Defense 171.7 31st
Passing Offense 296.0 6th Passing Offense 187.2 23rd
Rushing Offense 116.3 13th Rushing Offense 99.5 21st
Fantasy Impact: Again another buy-low candidate has gone, welcome back Tom Brady. All of the Brady owners loved the fact that Bill Belichick runs up the score and kept throwing the long ball last week. With the return of Brady means the return of Randy Moss and Wes Welker. True they faced one of the leagues worst passing defenses but this week is not much tougher and I fully expect them to do it all over again. Here is my prediction this week: Tom Brady 4 touchdown passes (I was going to shoot for two + 300 yards but I have to make my predictions count) Part of the reason I think he will have another huge day is the fact that Sammy Morris is hurt and may be out this week – just when we thought we knew what the Pats were going to do with their running back situation. This does mean that Laurence Maroney will have an increased value but always be weary of the crafty vet Kevin Faulk stealing his carries. Well the Bucs are still a fantasy nightmare in every sense of the word. Splitting carries on offense, terrible passing game, defense giving up a ton of points. With that being said due to the bye weeks if you need a spot start you could do worse than Cadillac Williams going against the 20th ranked rushing defense. If the Bucs are going to move the ball at all it will be on the ground and it will be Cadillac Williams doing the moving.
San Francisco (3-2) at Houston (3-3)
San Francisco YARDS/GAME RANK Houston YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 234.0 20th Passing Defense 226.8 19th
Rushing Defense 88.6 7th Rushing Defense 125.0 24th
Passing Offense 179.6 27th Passing Offense 301.7 4th
Rushing Offense 106.2 16th Rushing Offense 77.3 30th
Fantasy Impact: So how do you think practice was the past two weeks for the 49ers coming off that embarrassing loss to Atlanta? You can bet Mike Singletary will have his team ready to play a Houston Team that is 24th against the run. This means welcome back Frank Gore (at this time it looks as if he will play) Singletary is going to go back to running the ball, controlling the clock, and concentrating on field position which should mean Gore will get a ton of carries if he is healthy. Shawn Hill will be asked to control the ball and not turn it over; however, against this defense he might throw one or two touchdowns as well. I do not think any of those will be to Michael Crabtree but he will be the most added player since he is starting this week. I have been saying it since week one and they have disappointed only week one thus far, the Texans are the Saints of the AFC and will put up a ton of points this game and every other game they play in for that matter. Matt Schaub is the real deal as long as he stays healthy. He spreads the ball extremely well however, Andre Johnson is the go-to receiver. He will be doubled covered this week but I expect the same numbers out of him. For those who listened and bought Steve Slaton low, congratulations he has been playing well as of late however this is a tough match-up. Due to the bye you have to start him but do not expect to see a repeat of what he did last week.
Minnesota (6-0) at Pittsburgh (4-2)
Minnesota YARDS/GAME RANK Pittsburgh YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 248.3 24th Passing Defense 200.7 12th
Rushing Defense 93.5 9th Rushing Defense 74.5 2nd
Passing Offense 238.2 16th Passing Offense 315.5 2nd
Rushing Offense 125.0 9th Rushing Offense 107.0 15th
Fantasy Impact: The Vikings put up 33 points last week against a great defense and Brett Farve was a big part of that. He hooked up with Sidney Rice (who is looking like the number 1 guy out there now) for over 170 yards. This week the Vikings travel to Heinz Field to face the Super Bowl Champion Steelers, who have remembered how to get to the quarterback and have a much better pass defense then the Ravens (who the Vikings threw all over last week) especially with the return of Troy Polamulu. This means a heavy does of Adrian Peterson to set up the pass which I am sure fantasy owners will be just fine with. After the compilation of six weeks of football Ben Roethlisberger is leading the league is passing yards – not Drew Brees, Big Ben. This means that the Steelers wideouts are worth a start most weeks however; this week is a little scary. The Vikings get to the quarterback more than any other team and the Steelers have had protection issues for a few years now but the game is in Pittsburgh and Ben always steps up at home. The Steelers running attack will be called upon to ensure the Vikings do not blitz every down and expect to see more Rashard Mendenhall starting for the Steelers which means Willie Parker is border-line droppable at this point.
San Diego (2-3) at Kansas City (1-5)
San Diego YARDS/GAME RANK Kansas City YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 217.2 13th Passing Defense 249.5 25th
Rushing Defense 141.0 27th Rushing Defense 130.3 25th
Passing Offense 303.8 3rd Passing Offense 183.3 25th
Rushing Offense 57.6 32nd Rushing Offense 98.0 25th
Fantasy Impact: The Charges need a win and are off to a slow start – what else is new? This seems to happen every year and every year then blow up right around this time. Facing a Chiefs team that is at the bottom of the league in every defensive category should help. Phillip Rivers will be primed for a huge day. So make sure you are starting Vincent Jackson and Antonio Gates (I know no kidding but start them and expect big things out of both, Jackson 1000 yards and 10 touches – still on pace). For the Chiefs they added the ancient Joey Galloway which should help the value of Matt Cassel and Dwayne Bowe. I do expect the Chiefs to put some numbers on the board but it might not be through the air. Larry Johnson is a great bye week replacement start this week going against the worst rushing defense in the league. In deeper league Jamal Charles might even have a slight fantasy value this week.
Green Bay (3-2) at Cleveland (1-5)
Green Bay YARDS/GAME RANK Cleveland YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 192.6 10th Passing Defense 242.0 23rd
Rushing Defense 105.4 16th Rushing Defense 165.3 30th
Passing Offense 291.2 7th Passing Offense 151.0 31st
Rushing Offense 101.2 19th Rushing Offense 103.7 18th
Fantasy Impact: I believe I start this the same every single week. The Browns are not good at the game of football. Which means start all Packers confidentially this week. Aaron Rodgers had a great game against the Lions last week and will have similar numbers this week. Father Time aka Donald Driver has actually been more productive than Greg Jennings this year but I have a feeling that will all change this week. Jennings is due for a monster game and this secondary gives up a ton of long balls to big fast receivers (Jennings). Ryan Grant has proved he is an average running back on a good team however, he is a must start this week going against the league third to worst run defense. For the Browns it is the Derek Anderson show whether anyone likes it or not and I hope no one is starting him. For that matter I am not a huge fan of starting any Brown ever but I must admit Mohamed Massaquoi improves every game. For their running game it is still the Jamal Lewis show (hasn’t his back-up been on the sleeper list for 5 years now?) and he will touch the ball at least 20 times this contest. Lewis is a good bye week replacement this week, good not great.
New York Jets (3-3) at Oakland (2-4)
New York Jets YARDS/GAME RANK Oakland YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 187.7 8th Passing Defense 220.2 16th
Rushing Defense 115.7 21st Rushing Defense 145.3 28th
Passing Offense 172.5 30th Passing Offense 141.2 32nd
Rushing Offense 163.0 2nd Rushing Offense 88.5 28th
Fantasy Impact: For Raider Nation I do apologize but you must admit without a few big plays out of Zach Miller last week I would have started this write-up the same as always: JaMarcus Russell is not good at throwing football. Russell had some help from his defense and Justin Fargas the forgotten man in Oakland. Last season Fargas was the leading rushing for Oakland and last week he reminded us why. A downhill runner Fargas looked solid and will get plenty of carries again this week. That is enough praising for the Raiders and with that being said I still do not recommend starting any Raider unless you have bye week issues and that includes a hit or miss Zach Miller. For the Jets, Mark Sanchez had his worst outing of his young career which translated into bad outings for Braylon Edwards and any other human that hoped to catch a ball from Sanchez. Thomas Jones stepped up where Sanchez failed rushing for a career high 200+ yards and Leon Washington had over 100 total yards as well. This week expect Rex Ryan to run the ball again and ease his young quarterback into comfortable grounds. I would not be surprised at a 65-35 run to pass ratio which means both Jones and Washington are good spot starts this bye week.
Buffalo (2-4) at Carolina (2-3)
Buffalo YARDS/GAME RANK Carolina YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 170.7 4th Passing Defense 156.8 2nd
Rushing Defense 181.8 32nd Rushing Defense 149.2 29th
Passing Offense 187.7 22nd Passing Offense 182.4 26th
Rushing Offense 121.7 12th Rushing Offense 131.2 8th
Fantasy Impact: Steve Smith owners – it is panic mode time. The fire in his eyes is slowly turning to embers, however, do not count him out just yet; there is still time for a bounce back year. With that being said, if you have better options go ahead and place Smith on your bench I am not that confident in him. Carolina has gone back to their roots and are running the ball almost every play and since they are playing the worst rushing defense in the league DeAngelo Williams could run for over 100 yards and find the endzone once if not twice this week. Bills fan be thankful for the win last week since a few more losses and the team might just move to Canada this year. Trent Edwards went down and if he is out this week, Terrell Owens value drops even more. Just like Carolina, the Bills went to basically running the ball every play and Carolina is just as bad as the Bills against the run. This means it will be the Marshawn Lynch and Fred Jackson show for the Bills. Due to all this running this might be the fastest game in NFL history.
Chicago (3-2) at Cincinnati (4-2)
Chicago YARDS/GAME RANK Cincinnati YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 217.8 14th Passing Defense 254.8 28th
Rushing Defense 88.4 6th Rushing Defense 96.8 11th
Passing Offense 240.2 15th Passing Offense 229.2 19th
Rushing Offense 89.8 27th Rushing Offense 113.2 14th
Fantasy Impact: This is a match-up of two teams coming off tough losses and both will be fired up. Matt Forte owners have to be somewhat concerned since he has yet to put together back to back solid (solid not even blow-up) games this season. Now he is still a must start every week and I do not expect two fumbles on the one yard line again (I actually do not expect any more fumbles in the red zone for the rest of the year out of Forte) With Forte playing so poorly this season Jay Cutler has needed to step up and he certainly has. Cutler has been spreading the ball around however, I am still convinced that Greg Olsen will be a top tight end this year and last week Owen Daniels had two scores against this Cincy defense so you do the math. Now I expect Olsen to play well but it is anyone guess which receiver will step up. For that reason I am not a fan of any of them since they are all hit or miss. The Bengals will be looking to bounce back with a heavy dose of Cedric Benson (who is 3rd in the league in rushing – Cedric Benson, so if you drafted him and people mocked you now is the time to throw it back into their faces). If Benson gets going then so will Carson Palmer and Chad Ochocinco – it was obvious last game that as Benson goes so does the Bengals. I do expect Benson to rush for more than 44 yards so I do expect Carson and Chad to hook up a few times.
New Orleans (5-0) at Miami (2-3)
New Orleans YARDS/GAME RANK Miami YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 217.8 15th Passing Defense 225.0 18th
Rushing Defense 83.4 5th Rushing Defense 76.4 3rd
Passing Offense 280.0 8th Passing Offense 176.4 29th
Rushing Offense 159.6 4th Rushing Offense 177.0 1st
Fantasy Impact: Drew Brees just might carry more than one person to a fantasy championship if he keeps this up. Number one passing defense last week? No problem, Drew only threw for 369 passing yards and 6 touchdowns. Every week I state it is tough to start any Saint wide-out however, if Brees is going to be this good maybe you should just start all of them all the time. This week I do not see why they will not do it again just like every other week. Marques Colston seems to be the lock that will always find the endzone and Jeremy Shockey keeps on surprising everyone. For the running game it is a three-headed monster, just like Tampa Bay, however, unlike Tampa Bay the offense is really good so there is plenty to go around. The Fins have a tough time getting to the corners so Reggie Bush might finally have a big game. For the Fins I love the fact that Ronnie Brown plays at least one series at quarterback in the Wildcat formation. I am sure all of his owners do as well since he is getting what seems like thirty touches a game. Paired with Ricky Williams and a great run blocking offense line who needs a real quarterback? Of course they have to throw the ball a few times and Chad Henne has done his job and even has brought a deep ball that Chad Pennington could not throw into the mix. Due to this fact Ted Ginn actually has increased value with the departure of Pennington and proved that in their last outing. One side note to Ginn owners – if return yards count good news, Ginn will be taking kick-off and punt return duties from this point on.
Atlanta (4-1) at Dallas (3-2)
Atlanta YARDS/GAME RANK Dallas YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 241.0 21st Passing Defense 251.4 26th
Rushing Defense 118.2 23rd Rushing Defense 106.4 17th
Passing Offense 232.4 18th Passing Offense 268.2 11th
Rushing Offense 98.6 24th Rushing Offense 161.0 3rd
Fantasy Impact: Dallas was a coin toss away from going into full out panic mode two weeks ago however, they pulled off a win on the shoulders of Miles Austin who had more receiving yards than any Cowboy has ever had in one game. Now if you picked him up hoping that he will produce close to that every game guess again. This is still a running team and the Cowboys will run with Marion Barber, Felix Jones, (his 7+ yards per carry is a welcome addition back if he plays), and even Tashard Choice all day long. Reports are saying Choice will carry the load this week but I do not trust the source, Jerry Jones on his own radio show (could it be that he would like the Falcons to think Barber is still banged up?) With the Falcons having to stack the box, Tony Romo will look for his boy Jason Witten and might finally find him in the endzone. Last week the Falcons could not stop the other best friend combo in Jay Cutler to Greg Olsen so I expect the same. The Falcons are a good offense – that is just a fact at this point with a stud quarterback in Matt Ryan, stud receiver in Roddy White, a stud Tight End in Tony Gonzalez, and a stud running back in Michael Turner. All four of these guys are must starts every week and one is almost a lock to have a huge game each week. Since the Cowboys secondary has been hurting all year, my thought is it is Roddy White’s turn again. (I hate to keep tooting my own horn but he is another buy low guy we told you to trade for)
Arizona (3-2) at New York Giants (5-1)
Arizona YARDS/GAME RANK New York Giants YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 265.2 31st Passing Defense 147.3 1st
Rushing Defense 59.6 1st Rushing Defense 110.3 18th
Passing Offense 297.2 5th Passing Offense 260.3 12th
Rushing Offense 57.6 31st Rushing Offense 147.7 5th
Fantasy Impact: For the first time all season the Cardinals looked like the team that went to the Super Bowl last year and the main reason why was the fact they threw the ball all over the field. This week they face a Giants team that had troubles stopping the pass last week because, simply-stated, they could not get to the quarterback. If they cannot get to Kurt Warner expect Larry Fitzgerald to have a big day and even if they get to Warner a few times Fitzgerald matches-up well against this Giants secondary. Eli Manning will face one of the worst passing defenses in the league and will have a bounce back game, along with Steve Smith and Mario Manningham. The Cardinals might be first against the run but Brandon Jacobs is going to be running mad which means he will be plowing over Cardinals all day long. I do not expect a ton of yards but I do expect a touchdown or two out of him.
Philadelphia (3-2) at Washington (2-4)
Philadelphia YARDS/GAME RANK Washington YARDS/GAME RANK
Passing Defense 179.0 5th Passing Defense 169.0 3rd
Rushing Defense 103.8 15th Rushing Defense 118.0 22nd
Passing Offense 270.8 10th Passing Offense 212.0 21st
Rushing Offense 100.0 20th Rushing Offense 98.7 23rd
Fantasy Impact: Jason Campbell was pulled at half time, Clinton Portis had his longest run of his career but ran out of gas and did not find the endzone, and Santana Moss had one nice grab which was throw by a journeyman back up named Todd Collins last week as the Skins lost to winless Kansas City Chiefs. What does this mean? That this will be the swan song for Redskins head coach Jim Zorn. It is almost a lock that a new head coach will be named after this game as the Skins head into their bye week. Owner Daniel Snyder has already given the play calling to a 187 year old Sherm Lewis (as some local Junkies say please no more Bingo references as it is already played out) One would think that the players will be pumped up for this game to win one for the skipper but as the Redskins have proved all year they lack heart and they play an angry Eagles team that will be looking to take it out Skins. Due to this do not start any Redskins this week if you can help it, the only glimmer of hope is that if the JaMarcus Russell to Zach Miller connection gained positive yards against this Eagles team one week ago then maybe Chris Cooley will have a decent game. After a loss to the Raiders I am sure that Philly fans are once again questioning Donovan McNabb but I fully expect a huge bounce back Monday night game from both McNabb and Brain Westbrook. The Skins are ranked third against the pass but have played the easiest schedule in the league so start McNabb and anyone he throws the ball to confidently. For the running game Westbrook has historically torched the Redskins and will do so again on Monday, he is a must start and it is not out of the realm of possibility that he might pull off one his 100 yards rushing and 100 receiver nights. I think a nice sleeper will be my tight end Brent Celek since the Redskins will game plan all week for Westbrook and DeSean Jackson leaving the middle wide open for Celek. All Eagles are good plays this week do not worry that Redskins are all of a sudden going to start playing like one of the highest-paid teams in the league.