Saturday, October 10, 2009

Defensive Corner: Sleepers, Injury and Update


Eagles (v. Buccaneers): Already a solid defensive unit, the Eagles are coming off a bye week and should be well rested and ready for action. The Buccaneers however, are 0-4 and starting a rookie quarterback in front of a hostile Philadelphia crowd. (They pelted Santa Claus with snowballs for no reason…Santa Claus… that’s just plain mean) Look for Philadelphia to have a solid week against the meager Bucs. On a side note: I am aware the Eagles are not a sleeper per se, but they aren’t owned in 100% of ESPN leagues, so just consider this my reminder to check you FA lists.

Redskins (v. Panthers): Carolina has been a fantasy owners dream this season as every team who has played them has walked away happy (Eagles-35pts, Falcons-7pts and Cowboys-19pts (ESPN scoring)) If the Redskins take advantage of this weak offense and Delhomme’s high turnover rate, the Redskins could post high numbers this week.

Bills (v. Cleveland): Cleveland showed some life last week but I think that has more to do with Cincy playing down to Cleveland’s level and not vice versa. Despite the brief spark, the Browns have been offensively inept thus far and while they’ve resolved their quarterback controversy, that’s about the only issue they’ve solved this season. However, please take note that I only recommend picking up the Bills if you are stuck in a bye week or way unfavorable matchup scenario as the Bills, while having the potential to produce offensively (see week 1), also have a tendency to “suck”. (I’m sorry, I couldn’t find another word that echoed my sentiments more eloquently)


*Denotes Starter

Baltimore Ravens (v. Cincinnati)
*Tavares Gooden (LB) Shoulder/head, Probable, full practice
*Jarret Johnson (LB) Shoulder, Questionable, did not practice
*Ed Reed (S) Knee, Probable, full practice

Impact: I don’t even know why they list players who are “probable” and have participated in full practice all week on the injury report. Alright, I do know why; they have to. Anyway, my point is that Gooden and Reed will likely be on the field on Sunday so the only concern here is the potential loss of Johnson, which, if you’ve read any of my prior posts, you would know that I generally state would be no big deal seeing as he is the only defensive starter possibly out at the moment. As such, go with the Ravens this week against the Bengals because although the Bengals have played well against Green Bay and Pittsburgh, they were exposed last week against the Browns and the Ravens don’t have fourth quarter collapses like the Steelers to take advantage of.

Dallas Cowboys (v. Kansas City)
Gerald Sensabaugh(S) Thumb, Questionable, did not practice
Mike Hamlin(S) Wrist, Questionable, did not practice
Curtis Johnson(LB) Hamstring, Questionable, did not practice

Impact: Non-starters, no significant impact

New England Patriots (v. Denver)
*Jerod Mayo(LB) Knee, Questionable, limited practice
James Sanders (S) Shoulder, Questionable, limited practice
*Shawn Springs(CB) Knee, Questionable, limited practice
*Vince Wilfork (NT) Ankle, Questionable, limited practice

Impact: The Patriots always have a solid supporting cast waiting in the wings to takeover for any injury, however, I’m not sure I would start even a fully healthy Patriots defense this week against Denver. While I’m yet to be completely sold on Denver, who is 4-0 against the Bengals, Browns, Raiders and Cowboys, I’m not going to underestimate them at Mile High Stadium against an inconsistent Patriots defense.

New York Giants (v. Oakland)
*Michael Boley Knee, Out
Bryan Kehl(LB) Finger, Questionable, did not practice
Chris Canty(DT) Calf, Questionable, did not practice
Aaron Ross(CB) Hamstring, Questionable, did not practice
Clint Sintim(LB) Groin, Probable, full practice
Dave Tollefson(DE) Illness, Questionable, did not practice
*Justin Tuck(DE) Shoulder, Probable, full practice

Impact: Boley is out, but fortunately the Giants already know how to work around his absence due to his first week suspension. The Giant’s are a no brainer to start this week as they facing the not-so-mighty Oakland Raiders who in the last two weeks only managed to score a combined total of 9 points against Denver and Houston.

New York Jets (v. Miami)
*Lito Sheppard(DB) Quadricep, Missed Week 4 at New Orleans
Donald Strickland(DB) Ankle, Missed Week 4 at New Orleans

Impact: It’s hard to analyze without a status being listed however, I’m just going to restate my belief that the loss of one starter won’t severely damage a defense. Although Miami is 1-3 on the season this far, this matchup has me a little nervous for the Jets for some reason that I can’t exactly pinpoint. Maybe it’s the fact that the Dolphins kept it close with the Colts and obliterated the Bills, maybe it’s the Monday night factor, or maybe it’s just that I’m incredibly sick as I’m writing this and I’m mixing up my queasiness with uneasiness.

Philadelphia Eagles (v. Tampa Bay)
Quintin Demps(S) Hamstring, Probable, full practice
Dimitri Patterson(CB) Hand, Probable, full practice
Ellis Hobbs(CB) Illness ,Probable, full practice

Impact: Non-starters, no significant impact.

Pittsburgh Steelers (v. Detroit)
*Troy Polamalu(DB) Knee, Questionable , limited practice
Andre Frazier (LB) Shoulder, Questionable, did not practice

Impact: Word on the street is that Polamalu might be back this week which would be a huge boost for the Steelers’ defense which has been having some fourth quarter issues as of late. (By “fourth quarter issues” I mean “doing everything just short of not taking the field to allow the other team to score.”) Nevertheless, this week the Steelers will be facing Detroit which shouldn’t pose as too much a challenge for them

Tennessee Titans (v. Indianapolis)
Colin Allred(LB) Shoulder, Questionable, did not practice
*Keith Bulluck Knee, Questionable, Limited Practice
*Cortland Finnegan(CB) Hamstring, Questionable, Limited Practice
Vincent Fuller (S) Forearm, Questionable, did not practice
Jason Jones(DT) Shoulder, Questionable, did not practice
Stanford Keglar (LB) Hamstring, Questionable, limited practice

Impact: I don’t know why I keep listing the Titans as a top defense this year; they’ve been far too unpredictable and completely unreliable. This theme will continue into Week 5 against Indy, when 6’5 230lb quarterback with a laser-rocket arm, Peyton Manning will exploit all the weaknesses the Titans have revealed so far this season. DO NOT START.

Related Posts by Subject