Thursday, October 18, 2007

Matt's Stats: Week 7 NFL Preview

We have officially reached the midpoint of the Fantasy season so lets get right to the action...Here are the players and picks for Week 7 in the National Football League:

"Sleep"ing on the Job:

1) Byron Leftwich (QB, Atlanta Falcons) - Last week I said to pick up Leftwich, so here is just a quick reminder. As predicted he is now the starter for Atlanta after another bad week. Pick him up if for a dependable backup, as he is certain to improve the Falcons offense.

2) Michael Bennett (RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers) - The Bucs are in need of a RB and they got a very good one at the trade deadline this year. His best year was back in 2002 (1296 Rushing Yards, 5 Rushing TD, 351 Receiving Yards, 1 Receiving TD for the Vikings), but he is still only 29 years old and should get a lot more playing time in Tampa Bay then he ever got in Kansas City. This may be a bit late, since he has been picked up in 55% of leagues since the trade deadline, but if you are one of the 33% of leagues in which he is still a free agent, pick him up immediately! With so many RBs being injured, Bennett is sure to be a big help down the stretch.

"Play" or "Stay Away"

QB - Play Carson Palmer (QB, Cincinnati Bengals). Palmer (4 TD, 6 INT over the last 3 games) and the entire Bengals team has been struggling as of late, but expect them to wake up against the Jets this week, who are currently ranked 27th against the pass.

Stay Away from Daunte Culpepper (QB, Oakland Raiders). Culpepper is playing against a good KC defense (194.5 passing yards allowed per game, 5 TD allowed, 7 INT) and has struggled since the Miami game (229 Yards, 1 TD, 2 INT against SD in Week 6). Look elsewhere this week at QB.

RB - Play Willie Parker (RB, Pittsburgh Steelers). Pittsburgh is against Denver (ranked last against the run in the NFL giving up 187.6 per game) on Sunday Night Football. Expect Parker to get his first TD since Week 2 and about 100-125 yards rushing.

Stay away from Marion Barber (RB, Dallas Cowboys). After combining for 256 yards and 4 TDs in his first 3 games, Barber has not done much. In his last 3 weeks he has only 127 yards and 0 TDs. Look for Barber to struggle again as Dallas plays against a very good Vikings defense (ranked 2nd against the run allowing 66.2 yards per game). While it is always a possibility that Barber gets a goal line TD, he is much more likely to have another game with little production. Stay away from him if possible until his next game against Philly in Week 9.

WR - Play Patrick Crayton (WR, Dallas Cowboys). Crayton already has 381 receiving yards and is tied for the team lead with 4 TDs during the entire season. He has gained most of those yards over the last 3 games with 303 yards and 4 TDs coming in that time. Crayton will ride his momentum into the game this week against Minnesota, who gives up the most receiving yards per game (304.6) of any team in the NFL. A 150 yard, 2 TD performance is definitely possible and Crayton should be started in all leagues.

Stay away from Dwayne Bowe (WR, Kansas City Chiefs). Boye has had a great rookie season, rising to #1 on the Chiefs depth chart, but do not start him in Week 7. The Raiders rank 11th in Receiving yards allowed this year but 28th in Rushing yards allowed (144.8 Yards per game). Expect a heavy dose of rushing by Larry Johnson and not much receiving yards from Bowe or the rest of the Chiefs this week.

Survival of the Fittest:

Thanks to San Diego's win last week over Oakland my record for the season is up to 5-1. The pick this week is an easy one. For the first time this year I'm going to go with the New England Patriots. The Patroits are undefeated, the Dolphins are winless, and yet I was a bit nervous making this pick. Miami should keep it close for a half then look for the Pats to run away with the game.

Have a Great Week 7!

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