Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
Play Fantasy Use your Fantasy skills to win Cash Prizes. Join or start a league today. Play Now
      
Fantasy Football Today
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Gameday Inactives
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Red Zone Stats
Teams
Schedules
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Teams
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Teams
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Teams
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Teams
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

Week 7 Faceoffs: Is Rivers still reliable?

Senior Fantasy Writer
  •  

Editor's note: Each week Senior Fantasy Writers Dave Richard and Jamey Eisenberg will debate the value of a handful of key Fantasy players heading into a certain week that they genuinely disagree on. They not only state their case below, but they also provide owners with some alternatives as it relates to their respective rankings. Read their takes, then make the call.

Start Philip Rivers vs. New England?
Dave Richard Jamey Eisenberg
Dave Richard You'll never hear me badmouth Philip Rivers' talent, but if you give him a re-tread receiver, another re-tread tight end and a never-was first-round bust at receiver -- and that's it -- I don't like his chances. Sure, the matchup against the New England secondary is good. And yes, Rivers is a tremendous quarterback. But the Patriots are going to get one look at Rivers getting sacked seven times last week at St. Louis -- St. Louis! -- and find ways to attack him. Because of the lack of receiving threats, the Patriots won't have to play their aggressive safeties back on every play and can go after Rivers on the blitz or Ryan Mathews on handoffs. And if you think Rivers is incapable of throwing less than two touchdowns in a game, check his numbers from last week when he had Antonio Gates and Malcom Floyd at his disposal for much of the game. Now if either of those guys suit up for Week 7, then I'll be back to my typical Rivers-rooting self. But until then, I don't like his chances for big numbers against the Pats.
I'd rather start: Tom Brady (at SD), Matt Cassel (vs. JAC), Carson Palmer (at ATL)
Jamey Eisenberg Does Ryan Fitzpatrick have good wide receivers? Do the Bills have a good offensive line? Is Fitzpatrick the No. 2 Fantasy quarterback this season? Ponder all those questions when you look at Rivers this week. I understand the argument against him: He was harassed by a tough pass rush last week in a loss at St. Louis when Antonio Gates (toe) and Malcom Floyd (hamstring) went down with Legedeu Naanee (hamstring) out. His replacement receivers don't scare anyone with Patrick Crayton, Buster Davis, Randy McMichael and Darren Sproles. But we're still talking about an elite quarterback facing a terrible secondary that has allowed at least two passing touchdowns to every opponent this year, including Fitzpatrick. In fact, Fitzpatrick had the worst performance against the Patriots this year with only 18 Fantasy points. Rivers should get that in his sleep. He'll get the ball to his fill-in receivers and finish as a Top 10 Fantasy option. And the last time he faced the Patriots in San Diego he passed for 306 yards and three touchdowns. If you've been riding Rivers to this point then keep him in there as your starter.
I'd start him over: Donovan McNabb (at CHI), Kevin Kolb (at TEN), Carson Palmer (at ATL)
Start Donovan McNabb at Chicago?
Dave Richard Jamey Eisenberg
Dave Richard It's been a while since McNabb has tossed two touchdowns in a game -- he has yet to do it as a member of the Redskins. And while the Bears have held quarterbacks in check all year (not one has had more than one touchdown against them) they showed last week they are very susceptible to the pass. They've struggled with athletic pass-catching tight ends and McNabb will have one whether it's Chris Cooley or Fred Davis. He'll also have Santana Moss and the emerging Anthony Armstrong as deep threats, a receiving duo that could give the Bears' slow secondary some real problems. The hometown kid will do good against the team he grew up rooting for.
I'd start him over: Josh Freeman (vs. STL), Matt Hasselbeck (vs. ARI), Jay Cutler (vs. WAS)
Jamey Eisenberg McNabb is capable of having a big performance, but he has yet to throw for more than one touchdown pass in a game and might not have Chris Cooley (concussion) this week. That makes him a starting Fantasy option? Not for me. The Bears defense has yet to allow multiple touchdown passes in a game this year and should be able to limit this passing attack. McNabb is a useful bye-week replacement if you're missing Peyton Manning or Matt Schaub on a bye, but I wouldn't expect McNabb to have anything more than the 15 Fantasy points he has averaged this year.
I'd rather start: Eli Manning (at DAL), Brett Favre (at GB), Jay Cutler (vs. WAS)
Start Deion Branch at San Diego?
Dave Richard Jamey Eisenberg
Dave Richard It's pretty evident that Tom Brady is going to lean on Deion Branch. You know it, I know it, and the Chargers know it. San Diego's cornerbacks have played very well this season as opposing receivers have totaled one 100-yard game and two total touchdowns against them through six weeks. That's not to say that Brady won't throw two touchdowns, but it's hard to expect him to make use of the receivers they know will be involved (Branch and Wes Welker). To Branch's credit, he has played against the Chargers once already this year (five catches for 60 yards) and knows what to expect, so that could help him. That's why I think he's fine as a No. 3 Fantasy receiver for this week, but nothing more.
I'd rather start: Chad Ochocinco (at ATL), Santana Moss (at CHI), Robert Meachem (vs. CLE)
Jamey Eisenberg The Chargers are No. 1 in pass defense and have done a great job against opposing wide receivers this season with only Mike Sims-Walker and Danario Alexander scoring touchdowns. But San Diego's secondary is highly overrated. The Chargers have faced Kansas City, Jacksonville, Seattle, Arizona, Oakland and St. Louis so far this year -- not exactly Hall of Fame quarterbacks. Tom Brady is on a different level, and he'll pick apart this defense with Branch leading the way. His chemistry with Branch last week was evident with Branch getting nine catches for 98 yards and a touchdown on 12 targets. I'll take my chances that he has another solid game again, and he should be started in all leagues.
I'd start him over: Mike Williams, SEA (vs. ARI), Donald Driver (vs. MIN), Kenny Britt (vs. PHI)
Start Steve Smith at Dallas?
Dave Richard Jamey Eisenberg
Dave Richard Smith's history against the Cowboys cannot be denied, but so far this hasn't really been Smith's year. Smith has just one 100-yard game and one touchdown through six weeks (370 yards and one touchdown this year) -- that's likely because his role has been trumped by Hakeem Nicks (417 yards, six touchdowns) and Mario Manningham (289 yards, two touchdowns). Now what could happen is that the Cowboys focus on Nicks and Manningham, leaving some holes for Smith to exploit. But what also could happen is that Smith gets lost in the shuffle and puts up 70 yards or less, which he's done in four of six games this year. I like that he's caught at least six passes in three of his last four, so he's far from ignored, but trusting him in standard-league lineups isn't easy. He's fine as a bye-week replacement.
I'd rather start: Roy E. Williams (vs. NYG), Johnny Knox (vs. WAS), Michael Crabtree (at CAR)
Jamey Eisenberg Smith was a Cowboy killer last year in two meetings, and he should do well again this year. In two games against Dallas he had 16 catches for 244 yards and a touchdown. He beat them in September and he beat them in December. He's playing well recently with 12 catches for 159 yards and a touchdown in his past two games, and he's worth starting in all leagues this week. The Cowboys secondary has allowed two receivers to reach double digits in Fantasy points this year, and five receivers have scored against them. Eli Manning is playing well, and the Cowboys will focus their attention on Hakeem Nicks. That should allow Smith to make plays again, and he could even torch the Cowboys just as he did last season.
I'd start him over: Lee Evans (at BAL), Lance Moore (vs. CLE), Michael Crabtree (at CAR)

Do you agree with Dave or Jamey? Cast your vote and send your thoughts or questions to DMFantasyFootball@cbs.com. Be sure to put Attn: Fantasy Faceoff in the subject field. Include your full name, hometown and state.

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Matt Bryant misses only field goal, still puts up points
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1:28 am ET) Falcons kicker Matt Bryant managed points despite missing his only field goal attempt.

With time running out in the second quarter, Bryant lined up for a 59 yard attempt. He missed wide left. While that was the only field goal attempt he received, Bryant actually got a ton of work. He hit all eight of his extra point attempts, finding a way to put points on the board.

Bryant will take on the Vikings Week 4. 


Falcons DST wrecks havoc on Bucs Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1:24 am ET) The Falcons DST had a big game Thursday against the Buccaneers. 

Atlanta held the Bucs without a score until 8:46 was left in the game. The team was already ahead 56-0 at that point. Some of those points came as a result of strong defensive play. Atlanta managed one defensive touchdown after picking off Josh McCown. Devin Hester also returned a punt, putting Atlanta on the board for a second time. Overall, the team forced five fumbles, four of which were recovered. 

Atlanta will look for more Week 4 against the Vikings. 


Falcons backups get on the board Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1:15 am ET) The Falcons backups made an impact Thursday against the Buccaneers.

With the team up by a ton, Atlanta started using their subs in the third quarter. Jacquizz Rodgers received five carries for 6 yards. Rodgers also caught a pass for 3 yards.

Eric Weems seemed to be the biggest beneficiary, hauling in four passes for 69 yards. Fullback Patrick DiMarco gained 35 yards on three catches. Levine Toilolo also contributed, catching two passes for 25 yards. Courtney Roby picked up 11 yards on one reception. 

They'll take on the Vikings Week 4. 


Harry Douglas picks up a score before leaving
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1:11 am ET) Falcons receiver Harry Douglas manages to catch a touchdown before exiting Thursday's game.

Douglas caught two balls for 14 yards. He hauled in a 3 yard score on the team's first drive of the game. He injured himself with four minutes left in the second quarter, and did not return to the game. 

If Douglas can play, he'll take on the Vikings Week 4. 


Devin Hester makes big impact Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1:08 am ET) Falcons wide receiver Devin Hester made a big impact Thursday against the Buccaneers.

Hester caught just one ball for 25 yards, but found a way to make an impact in other places. He managed to score on his only carry, running in a 20 yard touchdown. Hester then managed to score on a punt return, breaking the NFL record for return touchdowns. He did so with former record holder Deion Sanders watching the game. Hester would leave the game twice due to cramping.

He'll take on the Vikings Week 4. 


Julio Jones dominates Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1:04 am ET) Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones turned in a fantastic performance Thursday against the Buccaneers. 

Jones hauled in nine passes for 161 yards and two scores. The Bucs had no answer for Jones on defense, even though Jones was Atlanta's only healthy weapon. After making a ridiculous catch on a 40-yard touchdown, Jones left the game. At that point, the team was up 42-0. Jones received a team-high 11 targets. 

Jones will take on the Vikings Week 4. 


Devonta Freeman gets 11 carries Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:59 am ET) Falcons running back Devonta Freeman got 11 carries Thursday against the Buccaneers. 

Freeman got most of his work after Steven Jackson was taken out of the game. Freeman did little to distinguish himself, though the Bucs defense was basically selling out against the run. Freeman gained just 12 yards on his 11 carries. He caught one pass for 7 yards. 

Freeman will take on the Vikings Week 4. 


Antone Smith breaks off a big run Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:55 am ET) Falcons running back Antone Smith managed to rip off a score Thursday against the Buccaneers.

Smith received two carries when the game was still in reach, but made his big play with the game already in hand. After Steven Jackson left the game, Smith got two carries on the next drive. The first went for -2 yards, but the second was much more exciting. Smith broke a 38 yard score. He managed to beat the defense to the outside, and out-ran everyone to the end zone. Smith finished with four carries for 50 yards. 

Smith will take on the Vikings Week 4. 


Steven Jackson runs one in Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:42 am ET) Falcons running back Steven Jackson managed to run in a score Thursday against the Falcons.

Jackson didn't get a ton of work, as the Falcons took a commanding lead early. He ran the ball 14 times for 54 yards. He scored his only touchdown in the third quarter. With the team already up 49-0, Jackson managed to pick up a 2 yard score. The run was impressive, as Jackson broke two or three tackles on the play. The team then went to other backs, opting to keep Jackson fresh.

Jackson will take on the Vikings Week 4. 


T.J. Yates gets some time Thursday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:37 am ET) Falcons quarterback T.J. Yates saw some time Thursday against the Falcons.

Yates completed 3 of 4 passes for 64 yards. His only incompletion was a big one, as the Buccaneers managed to intercept and run back the pass for a score. 

Yates will take on the Vikings Week 4. 


 
 
 
Rankings