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The Fantasy Flavor Positional Power Rankings – Week 14 QBs

Posted on 03 December 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

Again, there wasn’t much shake up in the quarterback rankings this week. On the bright side, close to half of the top 20 weren’t very highly regarded at draft time, so there could still be a few good options on the waiver wire. The playoffs are here for a lot of us, so make sure to take a look at all of the rankings, as every decision is magnified at this time of the season.

 

Keep in mind that the power rankings, listed here, are based on year to date performance and not a reflection of your best options for week 14. Just below the power rankings are match up previews advising who should be better or worse than usual this week, based on their opponents. At the bottom, are the week 14 start rankings, that’s where you should look for help with your week 14 lineup decisions.

 

Week 14 Fantasy Quarterback Power Rankings

 

 

 

QB Power Rankings Archive34567 - 8 - 9 - 1011 - 12 - 13

 

(last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. Drew Brees (1) – NO – 3870 yds 24 TD 14 int & 1 TD rush

 

2. Tony Romo (3) – DAL – 2559 yds 21 TD 8 int

 

3. Aaron Rodgers (4) – GB – 2897 yds 20 TD 10 int & 4 TD rush

 

4. Kurt Warner (2) – AZ – 3741 yds 24 TD 11 int

 

5. Jay Cutler (5) – DEN – 3393 yds 21 TD 13 int

 

6. Phillip Rivers (6) – SD – 2955 yds 23 TD 10 int

 

7. Donavan McNabb (13) – PHI – 3030 yds 18 TD 10 int & 1 TD rush

 

8. Peyton Manning (7) – IND – 2948 yds 19 TD 12 int & 1 TD rush

 

9. Matt Cassel (10) – NE – 2784 yds 13 TD 10 int & 2 TD rush

 

10. Tyler Thigpen (12) – KC – 1739 yds 13 TD 8 int & 1 TD rush & 1 TD rec

 

11. Shaun Hill (11) – SF – 1067 yds 8 TD 3 int & 1 TD rush

 

12. Eli Manning (9) – NYG – 2624 yds 19 TD 8 int & 1 TD rush

 

13. Brett Favre (8) – GB – 2708 yds 20 TD 14 int

 

14. Chad Pennington (14) – MIA – 2881 yds 11 TD 6 int & 1 TD rush

 

15. Joe Flacco (16) – BAL – 2276 yds 12 TD 9 int & 2 TD rush

 

16. David Garrard (15) – JAX – 2748 yds 10 TD 9 int & 1 TD rush

 

17. Matt Ryan (18) – ATL – 2625 yds 13 TD 6 int

 

18. Kyle Orton (20) – CHI – 2195 yds 13 TD 7 int & 1 TD rush

 

19. Jason Campbell (19) – WAS – 2560 yds 10 TD 4 int

 

20. Jeff Garcia (NR) – TB – 1902 yds 8 TD 3 int

 

Dropped From Rankings: Trent Edwards – BUF

 

QBs Who Should Be Better Than Usual In Week 14: Matt Cassel @ SEA; Shaun Hill vs. NYJ; Matt Ryan @ NO; Kurt Warner vs. ST.L; Peyton Manning vs. CIN; Aaron Rodgers vs. HOU

 

QBs Who Could Be Sleepers Based On Week 14 Match Ups: JaMarcus Russell @ SD; Marc Bulger @ AZ; Gus Frerotte @ DET; Matt Hasselbeck vs. NE

 

QBs With Tough Week 14 Match Ups: Tony Romo @ PIT; Jake Delhomme vs. TB; Donavan McNabb @ NYG; Eli Manning vs. PHI; Jeff Garcia @ CAR; Phillip Rivers vs. OAK; Sage Rosenfels @ GB

 

QBs You Might Want To Avoid In Week 14: Ryan Fitzpatrick or Jordan Palmer @ IND; Jason Campbell @ BAL; Ken Dorsey @ TEN

 

And here are the week 14 Fantasy QB start rankings; it’s all 32 projected starting QBs in the order that you should consider them this week. They were gotten using the Fantasy Flavor secret formula, and have their formulary numbers in parentheses, the lower the better. We’ll get all of the positional rankings out to you in time for Thursday’s game, so keep checking back for the rest.

 

1. Drew Brees (15)

2. Kurt Warner (15)

3. Aaron Rodgers (16)

4. Shaun Hill (23)

5. Jay Cutler (24)

6. Peyton Manning (24)

7. Matt Cassel (24)

8. Tyler Thigpen (31)

9. Tony Romo (35)

10. Phillip Rivers (36)

11. Brett Favre (38)

12. Matt Ryan (40)

13. Donavan McNabb (41)

14. Chad Pennington (46)

15. Eli Manning (49)

16. Gus Frerotte (50)

17. Joe Flacco (51)

18. David Garrard (52)

19. Kyle Orton (52)

20. Trent Edwards (57)

21. JaMarcus Russell (59)

22. Ben Roethlisberger (61)

23. Matt Hasselbeck (65)

24. Marc Bulger (65)

25. Jeff Garcia (66)

26. Jason Campbell (68)

27. Sage Rosenfels (73) *I’d move him between McNabb & Pennington if it’s Schaub

28. Kerry Collins (73)

29. Jake Delhomme (76)

30. Daunte Culpepper (82)

31. Ryan Fitzpatrick (84) *no difference for Jordan Palmer

32. Ken Dorsey (93)

 

All of the rankings will be up in time for you to get your Thursday lineups in, so check back tomorrow for the rest. And use the links below to check all of the other positions; they’ll be activated as they become available.

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

 

Week 14 RB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 14 WR Rankings & Previews

 

Week 14 TE Rankings & Previews

 

Week 14 K Rankings & Previews

 

Week 14 D/ST Rankings & Previews

 

 

 

 

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Caps Home Win Streak Snapped/ Sean Avery Suspended by NHL

Posted on 03 December 2008 by Ed Frankovic

Caps Home Unbeaten Streak Halted at 10 Games

They say all streaks must come to an end and Tuesday night at the Verizon Center the Caps ten game home unbeaten streak (9-0-1) came to a crashing halt at the hands of the Florida Panthers, 5-3. This was also the first time that Panthers goalie Craig Anderson has defeated the Washington Capitals in four tries. The red hot Panthers are now 3-0-2 in their last five games and pulled within six points of the first place Caps.

A big reason for their strong recent play is the solid defensive group they have and Florida Head Coach Peter DeBoer is fairly pleased with what he has on the backline.

“They are definitely the key to our team and I thought [Jay] Bouwmeester was outstanding tonight. He was on the ice for almost 30 minutes and every time [Alexander] Ovechkin was on we tried to get him on. One through six we’ve got some depth there and I think it was kind of offense against defense tonight with what Washington was throwing at us and what we had in the lineup so I’m glad we won,” said DeBoer.

This game was not on television tonight and it was not pleasant to watch in person either as Florida totally outworked the Caps after Washington took a 1-0 lead on a Nicklas Backstrom power play goal in the first period. There seemed to be a lack of energy in the building in the first period and the Caps would have little to no energy in the second period and most of the third period before a late rally brought a 4-1 Caps deficit to 4-3 with just less than three minutes left in the game. Florida, however, would score into an empty net with one minute left to prevent a miracle Caps comeback.

Afterwards Washington Coach Bruce Boudreau was very frank and direct in his comments about the game and he was obviously not happy.

“The start we didn’t play very well but we held them to two shots until the last minute [Panthers forward Radek Dvorak would add two late first period shots] so I thought 1-0, we talk to the guys and tell them that we weren’t on top of our game, the crowd was a little quiet tonight and they were trying to put us to sleep so I said to watch out this period because they are a great transition team because they can skate and they did because they got three quick ones by us and next thing you know we are looking up and having a devil of a time handling the puck, shooting the puck, and we weren’t doing anything right,” said Caps Bruce Boudreau on a second period that was all Florida as they tallied three times and had a 9-6 shots advantage.

The second Panthers goal was a bit of a fluke as Caps forward Dave Steckel tried to go cross ice in his own zone while shorthanded and put the puck off of Caps defensemen Karl Alzner’s skate and through the pads of Jose Theodore. Any life and energy the Caps had to that point, and it was not much, faded and Florida took over from there.

“Tonight was the least energy we’ve had all year and we talked about having energy tonight because their team was coming off a big win in New York and they’d be ready to play us and I don’t know what it was, I have no idea,” added Boudreau on the Caps lack of energy.

“Steckel, I didn’t think it was a very good play or attempt, he should have went behind the net with it and it would have been much easier but it didn’t happen,” added Boudreau on the own goal that gave Florida the lead.

For the Caps they had only 26 shots on net and most of them came late in a 12 shot third period.

“We’d like to see more shots and when you have that low of a total it means you aren’t paying the price to go to the net. You are not going to score pretty goals all night long. In the third period [Tomas Fleischmann] goes to the net and it caroms off someone and he scores. That is how goals are scored,” said Boudreau on some of the offensive problems of his team. By the way, two of the three goals the Caps scored were on the power play so that was one of the few positives on the evening.

Caps goalie Jose Theodore started strong but faded and Boudreau did not give the goalie a pass on the night despite poor play in front of him.

“I thought the first goal was getable. I thought he was like the rest of the team and the problem is when he is like the rest of the team he stands out like a sore thumb but he probably wasn’t worse than any of our players but because he is the last line of defense everybody sees it,” added Boudreau on Theodore’s play.

Defensively the Caps are playing with four guys who started the season with Hershey but Boudreau could not put the blame on them for the loss.

“I definitely think we had some breakdowns on the blue line. I don’t know, we talk about inexperience at this level but it was the common sense plays they’ve been making since they were 13 that were bad and it wasn’t just the inexperienced guys [Alzner, Bryan Helmer, Sami Lepisto, and Tyler Sloan] who were making them. I recall quite vividly the two guys [Shaone Morrisonn and Milan Jurcina] who have been here a long time making just as many mistakes,” said Boudreau on his defensive corps. As I mentioned in my live blog on Saturday night, clearly Morrisonn is struggling and Jurcina has played poorly since a very good game last Wednesday against Atlanta. Jurcina has a strong shot but he fires at the wrong time in a lot of cases so many of his shots are getting blocked creating transition opportunities for the opposition.

Everyone knows the Caps are banged up and missing some very key players in defensemen Mike Green and Tom Poti and forwards Alexander Semin and Sergei Fedorov but Boudreau wasn’t going to chalk the loss up to that.

“I don’t want to make excuses on injuries. Guys have got to step up when other guys go down and say this is great for me, this is my chance,” said Boudreau on the depleted Caps lineup.

As for the second late game failed comeback in eight nights (the Caps rallied late in Minnesota last Monday night) Boudreau was not seeing it as a positive.

“It is too little too late. Anyone can make it close and play hard for seven minutes and say well we’re close but it wasn’t a close game and they were dominating us to the point where you are undefeated at home and you are getting booed which was probably rightfully deserved at one point in the third period. It was very visible to the people upstairs, to me, and to the coaching staff that they were just plain outworking us and that is unacceptable,” said Boudreau.

“We didn’t play very good, we didn’t play with a lot of life and everybody is accountable. What I said in the room today is it is not me coming in and yelling at you, you guys should start yelling at each other to get some of you going because there were some guys that definitely weren’t playing very well tonight,” finished Boudreau on his discussion with the team after the game.

From my view, Ovechkin, Backstrom, and Viktor Kozlov had an okay night, especially the Great #8, who when not scoring is at least hitting people, and Backstrom, but the other three lines are struggling. I’m seeing some flashes of good play from Eric Fehr and he is getting chances but he needs to start burying those opportunities. His delay of game penalty did lead to the third Florida goal. Brooks Laich seems to work hard every night but I’m not seeing much out of Michael Nylander, who is getting paid to produce and just isn’t cutting it.

Next up for the Caps is the New York Islanders on Thursday Night at the Verizon Center. It is $1 hot dog night!

Programming Note: Backstrom will be on WNST at 845am on Wednesday morning with Drew Forrester.

Blogging Note: I had a chance to talk with Hershey Bears Coach Bob Woods at the Caps game on Tuesday night so on Wednesday night I am going to post a blog with that complete interview. The Bears have won nine games in a row and lead the AHL in points.

NHL News

Remember how I said this past summer that the decision by the Dallas Stars to sign forward and pest Sean Avery was not a good one for two reasons – the money they paid him and because he can wreck a locker room? Well Avery is proving me right as the knucklehead crossed the line in making comments about his former girlfriend, Elisha Cuthbert, and her current boyfriend, Calgary Flames defensemen Dion Phaneuf, this afternoon.

“I am really happy to be back in Calgary, I love Canada,” Avery said on camera this morning in Calgary. “I just want to comment on how it’s become like a common thing in the NHL for guys to fall in love with my sloppy seconds. I don’t know what that’s about. Enjoy the game tonight.”

As a result of Avery’s comments he was suspended by the NHL for conduct detrimental to the league. Tom Hicks, owner of the Stars and Dave Tippett, coach of the Stars supported the decision. Comments by some of the other Dallas players such as goalie Marty Turco and forward Brad Richards seemed to support the suspension as well. By the way, perhaps getting rid of Avery for the night inspired the Stars because they wound up beating Calgary, 3-1, for their second straight win.

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NFL Power Rankings – Week 14

Posted on 02 December 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

The top eleven teams in last week’s power rankings all remained in the top 11 this week, as all still seem to be pretty clearly in control of their own playoff destinies. The 12th spot, for now, goes to the Vikings who are on an impressive run, and now find themselves in the driver’s seat for the NFC North.

 

There may be a few noteworthy suspensions handed down in the next week or so, which could have a dramatic impact on the playoff races as the final quarter of the season unfolds. Also, because of the relative assuredness of the playoff picture at this early stage in the season, how teams are able to manage staying focused and staying healthy in the teams’ final meaningless games should have a lot of impact of the playoff picture, even after the pairings are locked in early.

 

Admittedly, Atlanta should probably be at 12 in this week’s rankings instead of 10, with both Denver and Minnesota holding on to stronger playoff hopes at this time. For Atlanta, it seems that the division is out of the question, and it’s wildcard or bust, with the Cowboys still very much on their heels. I just didn’t have the heart to drop Atlanta 2 spots after an impressive road win on the left coast. They’ve definitely been the toughest team to grade out over the course of the season so far. They deserve their respect, there’s no questioning that, but their playoff hopes are still very fragile at this point.

 

NFL Power Rankings Archive3- 4567 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12 - 13

 

Week 14 NFL Power Rankings (last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. New York Giants (1) – 11-1 – The Giants have easily been the most impressive team in the league so far, and appear to be without weakness. Even with the uncertain future of Plaxico Burress in New York, experts seem reluctant to concede that this will even be an issue for the Giants. Their schedule is full of tough teams from here out, but the Giants already enjoy a 2 game lead for the #1 seed in the NFC, a 3 game lead in their division, and a four game lead over Minnesota and Arizona for a first round bye. Next Week: vs. PHI

 

2. Tennessee Titans (2) – 11-1 – A Thanksgiving Day chance to feast on the Lions was probably the perfect remedy for Tennessee team that had lost it’s first game of the season the week before, and who had struggled to run for the last 3 weeks. The Browns and Texans in the next 2 games will probably either wrap up home field for the Titans, or make their week 16 match up with Pittsburgh for potential home field advantage. Also depending on what the rest of the AFC does in the meantime, Tennessee could have a chance to ruin Indy’s playoff hopes before they get started in week 17. Next Week: vs. CLE

 

3. Pittsburgh Steelers (3) – 9-3 – At 9-3, the Steelers have been a tough draw for everyone that they’ve played. You may not be able to say that about any other team in the league this season. The Steelers have positioned themselves for a chance at a bye in the playoffs, and with a game remaining against the Titans, they’re still in striking distance for the #1 seed, if the Titans should stumble, or let up down the stretch. Next Week: vs. DAL

 

4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5) – 9-3 – They’ve had a revolving door at quarterback and running back, and they’re playing a first place schedule, in the toughest division in the NFC, possibly the toughest in the NFL. The Bucs though, still find themselves in the driver’s seat for not only the NFC South title, but also a first round bye. They may not enjoy the cushion in the standings that they probably should at 9-3, and still have 2 tough divisional games on the road. But for now at least, the road to the NFC South title goes through Tampa. Next Week: @ CAR

 

5. Carolina Panthers (7) – 9-3 – If the Buccaneers are feeling salty about their relatively unsecured playoff hopes, despite their 9-3 record, than the Panthers have to feel outright frustrated with their standing in the playoff hunt, despite their strong performance thus far. A chance to beat Tampa head to head this week still leaves the Panthers somewhat in control of their own playoff destiny, but they’ll likely have to win out to have a chance at staying home for a playoff game. Next Week: vs. TB

 

6. Arizona Cardinals (6) – 8-4 – I’ve been feeling the need to justify ranking these Cards so highly all season, but even as the losers of 2 straight, the Cardinals are not a team that you want to sleep on. They’re still just an eyelash away from clinching the NFC West and at least one home playoff game. They’re also just one game behind Tampa and Carolina for a first round bye. In the playoffs, the Cards at home could be dangerous, especially if an east coast team has to travel to Arizona. Keep in mind that 3 of the Cards’ 4 losses came on trips to the east coast, the other was at home to the Giants. They’re front 7 is grossly underrated by most, and their running game still has a chance to get in gear. They’re unlikely to go across the country and beat anyone, but traveling to Arizona for a playoff game could be a lot tougher than it sounds. Next Week: vs. ST.L

 

7. New York Jets (4) – 8-4 – Success appeared to get to the Jets’ heads a bit last week, and they looked about as bad as they possibly could, just a week after dismantling the undefeated Titans. Brett Favre has been a rousing success for the Jets this season; clearly their playoff hopes would have been slim without him. But once the playoffs get here, I think that the Jets will have trouble finding their identity, a game manager would probably fit their formula a little better than a game breaker. Still, when the playoffs come around, there are few who can bring more experience to the table than Favre. The AFC East is still a dogfight, and with 2 west coast trips remaining, the Jets still have their work cut out for them in just getting to the playoffs. Next Week: @ SF

 

8. Indianapolis Colts (8) – 8-4 – If you took a poll among the AFC contenders and asked which team they’d most like to eliminate before the playoffs begin, my guess is that the Colts would be the team that’d be out. With that said, it appears that the rest of the AFC has missed their chance to bury these Colts when they were on the ropes early on. It’s still tough to imagine the Colts making a long run in this year’s playoffs, primarily because of their inability to stop the run. They can however, stop the run with their offense, in a manner of speaking, by jumping on opponents early in games and forcing them to play catch-up. The schedule looks like it could be pretty easy for the Colts from here, but don’t overlook their week 17 match up against Tennessee just yet. If Tennessee slips up and Pittsburgh keeps rolling, the Titans may need that one for the top seed. And if the Colts slip, just a bit in the meantime, the Titans may have a chance to send them home before the playoffs begin. I’m not so sure the Titans take that one off like everyone seems to think. Next Week: vs. CIN

 

9. Baltimore Ravens (9) – 8-4 – They’ve certainly been a great story so far, and the Ravens are starting to look more and more dangerous with each passing week. Their defense has adjusted to a lack of star power in the secondary, and despite the dominance of the run defense, the Ravens aren’t letting much go through the air either. Losses to Indianapolis and the Giants have shown that this team isn’t built for playing catch up, but with new wrinkles and guys stepping up every week, this team still appears to be growing into their prowess. The playoffs are by no means assured just yet, but they’re in sight. And the AFC North title could still be in the fold too. Next Week: vs. WAS

 

10. Atlanta Falcons (10) – 8-4 – The Falcons have taken the NFL by storm, but when it comes to their own division, not so much. There’s no shortage of storylines surrounding the Falcons this season. From moving forward without their jailed franchise quarterback, to finding a diamond in the rough in Matt Ryan; from being stepped out on by Bobby Petrino, to the meteoric rise of rookie head coach Mike Smith; this team is full of great stories. If they aren’t able to hold serve in their final four games however, the story will be about this miraculous rebound falling short of the post season. Someone with 10 or even 11 wins is likely to be left home in the NFC this season; Falcons fans are hoping that it’s not them. Next Week: @ NO

 

11. Denver Broncos (11) – 7-5 – The Broncos went a long way to locking up a playoff berth in week 13, and are quietly building a little head of steam too. If things keep going the way that they are, the Broncos could be looking at a first round match up with Indianapolis. They’ve had a couple of embarrassing post season blowouts at the hands of the Colts in recent years, but may be better equipped to go up and down the field with them this time around. Unless they can figure out how to play consistent defense, the Broncos will likely be short for the playoffs, but as long as their offense remains explosive, they should make it exciting while they’re in there. Next Week: vs. KC

 

12. Minnesota Vikings (16) – 7-5 – In yet another division where no one seems to be able to step up and grab hold of a playoff spot, the Vikings may be peaking at just the right time. Their two-headed backfield and stout defense could prove to be a formula for success once the post season rolls around too. The Vikings still have a very deep interest in pending suspensions of a number of key players, but are in good position for the playoffs despite a number of early season mishaps. Next Week: @ DET

 

13. New England Patriots (14) – 7-5 – The Patriots playoff hopes took a major shot on Sunday with their loss to the Steelers. They’re still very much in the hunt, and because of their experience and coaching have to be considered dangerous, but the Patriots have their work cut out for them too. Next up for the Pats are 2 straight games on the west coast, which has confounded a number of teams. The Jets did them a favor though by not taking advantage of a chance to bury them a little further in the AFC East last week too. Next Week: @ SEA

 

14. Dallas Cowboys (15) – 8-4 – The Cowboys look like they’re back in stride, the question now is, whether they’ll have enough time to make themselves a factor in the race for the playoffs. Their midseason stumble allowed a number of teams to pick up positions on them, but they’re not out of it quite yet. Games against playoff contenders in 3 of their remaining 4 will make the road bumpy, and the fact that two of them are from the AFC means that winning them doesn’t necessarily guarantee the reward of moving up in the standings. Next Week: @ PIT

 

15. Miami Dolphins (17) – 7-5 – I’m still not sure that people have started taking the Dolphins seriously just yet, and with the difficulty that they had in dealing with St. Louis on Sunday, I can understand why. One thing’s for sure though, opponents who’ve gone against Miami and given less than their best have paid the price this season. The Dolphins are more than flash and gimmick, they’re a pretty good football team, and they’re getting better too. They’ll need some help to get into the playoff hunt, but they still look like a factor at this point. Next Week: @ BUF *in Toronto

 

16. Washington Redskins (12) – 7-5 – It looks like the Redskins may have taken a couple of teams by surprise, especially with their improved offense early in the season. In recent weeks however, teams look less apt to let down for Washington, and they also appear to have adjusted to the Redskins new look on offense. Losing 3 of their last 4 has given a serious blow to the Redskins playoff hopes, and the schedule won’t make it any easier finishing up. They’re still in the hunt it seems, but fading fast. Next Week: @ BAL

 

17. Chicago Bears (13) – 6-6 – On one hand, you could say that the Bears let a golden opportunity pass them by against the Vikings in week 13. On the other hand however, you could say that the Bears never really looked like they belonged in the game in the first place. After playing everyone tough through the first 9 weeks of the season, the Bears have been blown out twice by divisional foes in recent weeks. Matt Forte has probably been too much of the offense this season, and looks to be hitting the rookie wall. Next Week: vs. JAX

 

18. New Orleans Saints (20) – 6-6 – Given the number of injuries that the Saints have been forced to deal with, and the tough games that they allowed to get away in weeks 2 and 3, they could consider themselves lucky to be at .500 with 4 games to go. When you look at the rest of the division staring squarely down at them in the rankings however, these Saints look like they’ll be playing for Dan Marino’s passing record, and something positive to carry into next season. The playoffs are pretty much out of the question for this bunch, but they could still affect the race. Next Week: vs. ATL

 

19. San Diego Chargers (19) – 4-8 – The Chargers playoff hopes are alive by the slimmest of margins, and fading quickly. It seems that week after week we look at the Chargers as a team with the potential of getting on a roll. The luxury of playing in the AFC West has kept them in the hunt for much longer than they probably deserve, and technically they could still get in. But the Broncos appear to be on somewhat of a roll lately, and the Chargers still haven’t been able to get things going. Next Week: vs. OAK

 

20. Buffalo Bills (18) – 6-6 – This season for the Bills will be one for the history books for sure. In addition to breaking new ground with a regular season game in Toronto, the Bills have gone from cruising to control of the AFC East early on, to a tail spinning mess of a team that has fallen into last place in the division that they controlled just a few weeks ago. It’ll take a miracle to rescue the Bills season, and  their playoff hopes with just 4 games remaining. Based on the way that they’ve played lately, simply holding up their own end of the bargain and winning out would be a minor miracle. Next Week: vs. MIA *in Toronto

 

21. Philadelphia Eagles (22) – 6-5-1 – Donavan McNabb responded to his benching in a big way with a Thanksgiving Day rally last week. Or maybe he just responded to a chance to play against a pretty bad Cardinals pass defense, traveling across the country in a short week. The Eagles are doing what they can to salvage a respectable record this season, but aside from a one-week infusion of confidence from beating the Steelers, the Eagles have never really presented themselves as a team that could be a factor in the playoff race. Next Week: @ NYG

 

22. Green Bay Packers (21) – 5-7 – Much like the Dow-Jones, the Packers have been either alarmingly good, or alarmingly bad from game to game, without any real warning. You truly never know which Packers team is going to show up from game to game, or as they proved last week, from quarter to quarter or even drive to drive. If the Jets make a sustained run into the playoffs, while the Packers are sitting home this post season, Ted Thompson may need to hire private security. (That is if he hasn’t already.) Next Week: vs. HOU

 

23. Houston Texans (23) – 5-7 – Media and PR types will try to come up with lots of reasons to make you believe that a lot of teams have the potential to be good really soon. When it comes to the Texans, they might be right. They’ve dealt with a considerable amount of adversity this season off of the field, and have had to struggle with injuries and a difficult schedule on the field too. Still, this week showcased a number of teams who look like they’ve already mailed in their seasons, and the Texans aren’t one of them. In fact they exposed one on Monday night against the Jags. Next Week: @ GB

 

24. San Francisco 49ers (27) – 4-8 – Mike Singletary has certainly made his impression on the Niners’ locker room, they’ve won 2 of their last 4, and showed well in a Monday night loss to Arizona. Clearly this team needs a pretty drastic overhaul in order to be competitive, but they’ve got some of the pieces in place already, Singletary looks like he may be one of them. Let’s not forget that they’re in the NFC West too, they could be closer than it seems to making a run at that division. Next Week: vs. NYJ

 

25. Cleveland Browns (26) – 4-8 – The Browns’ season may have been over before it began. Braylon Edwards was never able to establish a rhythm in the offense, Kellen Winslow Jr. has struggled to stay in the lineup, and Donte Stallworth was probably never really a good fit for this team, especially without Joe Jureviscius. The monumental letdown that the Browns have been overall, will probably steal some attention from the fact that their defense is vastly improved over last season. Their season is over now, but don’t sleep on these Browns for next year, they look like they have something that they can build on. Next Week: @ TEN

 

26. Jacksonville Jaguars (24) – 4-8 – The Jags are easily the most disappointing story of the season so far. There have been other teams that have failed to live up to high expectations, but few seem to have been as relatively healthy as Jacksonville. It looks like a slow start to the season derailed the Jags playoff hopes, and their hearts as well. They’re much too talented to be playing the way that they are, this team and its coaches should be outright embarrassed, on Monday night, they were. Next Week: @ CHI

 

27. Kansas City Chiefs (30) – 2-10 – Despite their 2-10 record, it’s not like these Chiefs are wasting a ton of young talent. To their credit, they have proven to be a handful for most opponents, but are simply overmatched on most Sundays. Unfortunately for the Chiefs, they don’t appear to have a lot of pieces in place to build around at this point either. At least they continue to play determined football. That at least, is a testament to Herm Edwards and the veterans on this team. Next Week: @ DEN

 

28. Oakland Raiders (25) – 3-9 – Fresh off of a stunning victory against Denver in week 12, the Raiders appeared to be set up for a mini win streak with the Chiefs on tap last week. Things didn’t work out that way however, and despite the flashes of talent that the Raiders youngsters have shown, they can’t seem to keep it together consistently at this point. Given the coaching carousel in Oakland in recent years, it’s no wonder consistency is an issue. Next Week: @ SD

 

29. Seattle Seahawks (28) – 2-10 – It seems that Mike Holmgren’s decision to take a year away from football may have inspired the Seahawks in an unexpected way. The team it seems has decided to take this season off, and Jim Mora may be wondering just what it is that he signed on for. Next week: vs. NE

 

30. St. Louis Rams (31) – 2-10 – Without their once vaunted offensive attack, the Rams leave a lot to be desired all the way around. They have some offensive talent, but can’t seem to keep them healthy, or to find a rhythm when they are healthy. It appears that the head coach wasn’t all that was wrong with the Rams this season, but it is the NFC West; so next year is still bright. Next Week: @ AZ

 

31. Cincinnati Bengals (29) – 1-9-1 – They found a pulse momentarily this season, but the Bengals look like another team that simply cashed it in when the odds stacked up against them early on. The Bengals, at this point appear to be in need of a major overhaul, both on and off of the field. Whether they’ll finally figure that out or not is another question altogether though. Unfortunately for the fans in Cincinnati, much like those in Oakland, you can’t fire the owner. Next Week: @ IND

 

32. Detroit Lions (32) – 0-12 – Even if they wind up winless, the Lions may be better off for the future than a lot of teams in the bottom third of this list. They have Calvin Johnson and Kevin Smith to build around on offense. Their defense is actually much better than it’s been in recent years, which still leaves lots of room to grow, but is progress none the less. They’re poised to walk away with the number one pick in the draft, and could trade that back for more picks if they’d like. The boatload of picks that they got from the Cowboys, plus whatever they do with their own picks could make the rebuilding effort a lot quicker than you’d expect. And these are no longer Matt Millen’s Lions. Next Week: vs. MIN

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

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Sunday Night Caps Notes – Bourque Played in Hershey Tonight

Posted on 30 November 2008 by Ed Frankovic

Here are some quick Caps notes as they get ready to face the Florida Panthers at the Verizon Center on Tuesday night:

-Chris Bourque, who played up with the Caps on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday was down in Hershey this Sunday evening and had an assist in a Bears 3-2 win over Norfolk. Could this mean that one of the Caps injured forwards (currently Alexander Semin and Sergei Fedorov) could be back on Tuesday night? I’m not sure but I’ll be watching for practice updates tomorrow. I think Semin is closer to returning than Fedorov. Of course the organization could have just wanted Bourque to get some more ice time so they may have just sent him down for a couple of days and recall him Tuesday morning should a forward be needed. Or they could be calling up a different forward (Graham Mink? Oskar Osala?) for Tuesday should one be needed. With the Caps so close to the salary cap every dollar counts these days and the salary cap figures do adjust on a daily basis so by sending down Bourque he got playing time and money was saved.

-Caps goalie of the future, Simeon Varlamov, got the win tonight and is now 9-2 with a .906 save percentage. Hershey is on fire and is now 18-5-0-1 for 37 points, five points better than any other AHL team. Kudos to Coach Bob Woods and the players for a great start to this season.

-The Florida Panthers come to town on Tuesday with a red hot goalie in Craig Anderson. Anderson made 37 saves today in blanking the New York Rangers and in his last three games has stopped 104 of 108 shots. Anderson leads the NHL in save percentage with a .948 rate. You can bet that Caps Coach Bruce Boudreau will be preaching going to the net and creating traffic in front of the goalie in practice on Monday.

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The Fantasy Flavor Positional Power Rankings – Week 13 WRs

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

The wide receiver rankings, like most of the rest of the positional rankings didn’t see a lot of change in week 13, aside from the return of a couple of old familiar names to the list. There have been a number of nice surprises at wide receiver this year, as there typically are, but as of now Lance Moore has officially unseated Eddie Royal as the out of nowhere superstar. We’ll see if he’s able to maintain that status as both Jeremy Shockey and Marques Colston look to be returning to form for the Saints.

 

Keep in mind that the power rankings, listed here, are based on year to date performance and not a reflection of your best options for week 13. Just below the power rankings are match up previews advising who should be better or worse than usual this week, based on their opponents. At the bottom, are the week 13 start rankings, that’s where you should look for help with your week 13 lineup decisions.

 

Week 13 Fantasy Wide Receiver Power Rankings

 

WR Power Rankings Archive34567 - 8 - 9 - 10- 11 - 12

 

(last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. Anquan Boldin (1) – AZ – 879 yds 11 TD

 

2. Calvin Johnson (4) – DET – 905 yds 8 TD

 

3. Larry Fitzgerald (2) – AZ – 1010 yds 6 TD

 

4. Steve Smith (7) – CAR – 853 yds 4 TD

 

5. Greg Jennings (6) – GB – 966 yds 6 TD

 

6. Roddy White (6) – ATL – 973 yds 6 TD

 

7. Santana Moss (5) – WAS – 773 yds 5 TD

 

8. Andre Johnson (9) – HOU – 1071 yds 3 TD

 

9. Brandon Marshall (11) – DEN – 887 yds 4 TD

 

10. Reggie Wayne (10) – IND – 824 yds 5 TD

 

11. Randy Moss (NR) – NE – 770 yds 8 TD

 

12. Terrell Owens (NR) – DAL – 718 yds 7 TD

 

13. Bernard Berrian (8) – MIN – 673 yds 4 TD

 

14. Lance Moore (19) – NO – 724 yds 7 TD

 

15. Kevin Walter (17) – HOU – 667 yds 7 TD

 

16. Vincent Jackson (18) – SD – 703 yds 5 TD

 

17. DeWayne Bowe (16) – KC – 724 yds 6 TD

 

18. Hines Ward (14) – PIT – 718 yds 5 TD

 

19. Justin Gage (13) – TEN – 413 yds 4 TD

 

20. Eddie Royal (12) – DEN – 673 yds 4 TD

 

Dropped From Rankings: TJ Houshmandzadeh – CIN; Lee Evans – BUF

 

WRs Who Should Be Better Than In Week 13: Donnie Avery & Tory Holt vs. MIA; Lee Evans vs. SF; Terrell Owens & Roy Williams vs. SEA; Antonio Bryant & Ike Hilliard vs. NO; Reggie Wayne, Marvin Harrison & Anthony Gonzalez @ CLE; Bernard Berrian vs. CHI; Hines Ward & Santonio Holmes @ NE; Santana Moss & Antoine Randle-El vs. NYG; Justin Gage @ DET

 

WRs Who Could Be Sleepers Based On Week 13 Match Ups: Derrick Stanley vs. MIA; Roscoe Parrish & Josh Reed vs. SF; Patrick Crayton vs. SEA; Kevin Curtis, DeSean Jackson & Hank Baskett vs. AZ; Sidney Rice & Bobby Wade vs. CHI; Nate Washington @ NE; Brandon Jones & Justin McCairens @ DET

 

WRs With Tough Week 13 Match Ups: Braylon Edwards vs. IND; Calvin Johnson vs. TEN; Randy Moss & Wes Welker vs. PIT; Steve Smith & Mushin Muhammad @ GB; Greg Jennings & Donald Driver vs. CAR; TJ Houshmandzadeh & Chad Johnson vs. BAL; Plaxico Burress & Amani Toomer @ WAS; Anquan Boldin, Larry Fitzgerald & Steve Breaston @ PHI; Lance Moore, DeVery Handerson & Marques Colston @ TB; DeWayne Bowe & Mark Bradley @ OAK

 

WRs You Might Want To Avoid In Week 13: Donte Stallworth vs. IND; Mike Furrey & Shaun MacDonald vs. TEN

 

And here are the week 13 Fantasy WR start rankings; it’s the top 75 wide receivers in the order that you should consider them this week. They were gotten using the Fantasy Flavor secret formula, and have their formulary numbers in parentheses, the lower the better. We’ll get all of the positional rankings out to you in time for Thursday’s games, so keep checking back for the rest.

 

1. Roddy White (23)

2. Santana Moss (23)

3. Reggie Wayne (25)

4. Anquan Boldin (27)

5. Terrell Owens (27)

6. Larry Fitzgerald (31)

7. Andre Johnson (31)

8. Bernard Berrian (33)

9. Calvin Johnson (35)

10. Steve Smith (37)

11. Greg Jennings (38)

12. Brandon Marshall (39)

13. Hines Ward (44)

14. Lee Evans (44)

15. Vincent Jackson (45)

16. Kevin Walter (46)

17. Justin Gage (48)

18. Randy Moss (52)

19. Lance Moore (52)

20. DeSean Jackson (52)

21. DeWayne Bowe (57)

22. Eddie Royal (61)

23. Antonio Bryant (64)

24. Laverneus Coles (67)

25. Issac Bruce (68)

26. TJ Houshmandzadeh (71)

27. Chris Chambers (71)

28. Donnie Avery (73)

29. Jerricho Cotchery (75)

30. Derrick Mason (76)

31. Wes Welker (82)

32. Braylon Edwards (86)

33. Marques Colston (90)

34. Mushin Muhammad (91)

35. Anthony Gonzalez (91)

36. Plaxico Burress *keep an eye on his injury status

37. Santonio Holmes (96)

38. Mark Bradley (97) *keep an eye on his injury status

39. Ted Ginn Jr. (97)

40. Malcolm Floyd (97)

41. Donald Driver (98)

42. Steve Breaston (101)

43. DeVery Henderson (102)

44. Matt Jones (102)

45. Marvin Harrison (109)

46. Michael Jenkins (113)

47. Nate Washington (114)

48. Greg Camarillo (115)

49. Tory Holt (123)

50. Kevin Curtis (124)

51. Antoine Randle-El (125)

52. Patrick Crayton (127)

53. Brandon Lloyd (132)

54. Chad Johnson (132)

55. Hank Baskett (132)

56. Bryant Johnson (135)

57. Jabar Gafney (140)

58. Mark Clayton (142)

59. Reggie Brown (142)

60. Harry Douglas (143)

61. Amani Toomer (146) *bump 5 or 6 spots if Burress is inactive

62. Ike Hilliard (146)

63. Roy Williams (147)

64. Rasheid Davis (148)

65. Koren Robinson (148)

66. Josh Reed (152)

67. Ashley Lelie (157)

68. Sinorice Moss (158) *bump 3 or 4 spots of Burress is inactive

69. Devin Hester (158)

70. Bobby Wade (159)

71. Sidney Rice (161)

72. Marty Booker (166)

73. Brandon Jones (168)

74. Brandon Stokley (169)

75. Chansi Stuckey (171)

 

All of the rankings will be up in time for you to get your Thursday lineups in, so check back tomorrow for the rest. And use the links below to check all of the other positions; they’ll be activated as they become available.

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

 

Week 13 QB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 RB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 TE Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 K Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 D/ST Rankings & Previews

 

 

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The Fantasy Flavor Positional Power Rankings – Week 13 QBs

Posted on 26 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

There’s not a lot of shake up in this week’s QB rankings, There are however plenty of quarterbacks among the top twenty who were overlooked on draft day and through much of the season. In fact, there’s a decent chance that you’ll still be able to find one of these top 20 still on your league’s waiver wire. There are 3 games on tap for Thursday this week, so we’ll have all of the rankings out in time to set your lineups well before the first kickoff on Thanksgiving Day.

 

Keep in mind that the power rankings, listed here, are based on year to date performance and not a reflection of your best options for week 13. Just below the power rankings are match up previews advising who should be better or worse than usual this week, based on their opponents. At the bottom, are the week 13 start rankings, that’s where you should look for help with your week 13 lineup decisions.

 

Week 13 Fantasy Quarterback Power Rankings

 

QB Power Rankings Archive34567 - 8 - 9 - 1011 - 12

 

(last week’s rankings in parentheses)

 

1. Drew Brees (2) – NO – 3574 yds 22 TD 11 int & 1 TD rush

 

2. Kurt Warner (1) – AZ – 3506 yds 21 TD 8 int

 

3. Tony Romo (6) – DAL – 2228 yds 18 TD 7 int & 1 TD rush

 

4. Aaron Rodgers (5) – GB – 2599 yds 17 TD 9 int & 4 TD rush

 

5. Jay Cutler (3) – DEN – 3036 yds 19 TD 12 int

 

6. Phillip Rivers (4) – SD – 2806 yds 23 TD 10 int

 

7. Peyton Manning (7) – IND – 2823 yds 19 TD 10 int & 1 TD rush

 

8. Brett Favre (9) – NYJ – 2461 yds 20 TD 13 int

 

9. Eli Manning (11) – NYG – 2319 yds 18 TD 7 int & 1 TD rush

 

10. Matt Cassel (10) – NE – 2615 yds 13 TD 8 int & 2 TD rush

 

11. Shaun Hill (15) – SF – 906 yds 7 TD 3 int & 1 TD rush

 

12. Tyler Thigpen (16) – KC – 1577 yds 13 TD 7 int & 1 TD rush, 1 TD rec

 

13. Donavan McNabb (8) – PHI – 2770 yds 14 TD 10 int & 1 TD rush

 

14. Chad Pennington (19) – MIA – 2715 yds 11 TD 6 int & 1 TD rush

 

15. David Garrard (13) – JAX – 2461 yds 9 TD 8 int & 1 TD rush

 

16. Joe Flacco (18) – BAL – 1996 yds 10 TD 9 int & 2 TD rush

 

17. Trent Edwards (NR) – BUF – 2266 yds 10 TD 10 int & 3 TD rush

 

18. Matt Ryan (14) – ATL – 2418 yds 11 TD 6 int

 

19. Jason Campbell (20) – WAS – 2328 yds 10 TD 3 int

 

20. Kyle Orton (12) – CHI – 2049 yds 11 TD 4 int & 1 TD rush

 

Dropped From Rankings: Gus Frerotte – MIN

 

QBs Who Should Be Better Than Usual In Week 13: Tony Romo vs. SEA; Kyle Orton @ MIN; Jay Cutler @ NYJ; Brett Favre vs. DEN; Donavan McNabb vs. AZ; Matt Ryan @ SD; Chad Pennington @ ST.L

 

QBs Who Could Be Sleepers Based on Week 13 Match Ups: Kerry Collins @ DET; Jeff Garcia vs. NO; Trent Edwards vs. SF

 

QBs With Tough Week 13 Match Ups: Matt Cassel vs. PIT; Aaron Rodgers vs. CAR; Drew Brees @ TB; Kurt Warner @ PHI; Jason Campbell vs. NYG; Eli Manning @ WAS

 

QBs You Might Want To Avoid In Week 13: Brady Quinn or Derek Anderson vs. IND; Ryan Fitzpatrick vs. BAL; Daunte Culpepper or Drew Stanton vs. TEN; Jake Delhomme @ GB

 

And here are the week 13 Fantasy QB start rankings; it’s all 32 projected starters in the order that you should consider them this week. They were gotten using the Fantasy Flavor secret formula, and have their formulary numbers in parentheses, the lower the better. We’ll get all of the positional rankings out to you in time for Thursday’s games, so keep checking back for the rest.

 

1. Tony Romo (9)

2. Jay Cutler (17)

3. Phillip Rivers (24)

4. Drew Brees (30)

5. Kurt Warner (30)

6. Donavan McNabb (31)

7. Brett Favre (32)

8. Shaun Hill (33)

9. Chad Pennington (33)

10. Peyton Manning (34)

11. Aaron Rodgers (35)

12. Matt Ryan (37)

13. David Garrard (41)

14. Tyler Thigpen (42)

15. Trent Edwards (44)

16. Jeff Garcia (46)

17. Matt Cassel (47)

18. Joe Flacco (47)

19. Eli Manning (49)

20. Kerry Collins (56)

21. Ben Roethlisberger (57)

22. Kyle Orton (60)

23. Jason Campbell (63)

24. Sage Rosenfels (64)

25. Jake Delhomme (70)

26. Marc Bulger (70)

27. Gus Frerotte (71)

28. JaMarcus Russell (72)

29. Matt Hasselbeck (77)

30. Ryan Fitzpatrick (83)

31. Brady Quinn / Derek Anderson (88)

32. Daunte Culpepper / Drew Stanton (92)

 

All of the rankings will be up in time for you to get your Thursday lineups in, so keep checking back. You can use the links below to check all of the other positions; they’ll be activated as they become available.

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

 

Week 13 RB Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 WR Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 TE Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 K Rankings & Previews

 

Week 13 D/ST Rankings & Previews

 

 

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NFL Power Rankings – Week 13

Posted on 25 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

There were no major shakeups in the power rankings this week, especially at the top, unless you consider the Titans slipping out of the top spot to #2 to be a major shakeup that is. With each passing week we seem to gain a little more clarity into the likely playoff picture, and possible seeding scenarios.

 

There’s still a lot of football left to be played, and certainly a surprise or two still around the corner in the season’s closing weeks, but by now I think we have a pretty good idea of which teams are contenders and which ones are pretenders. What’s still very much up for grabs though, is which of those contenders will position themselves to walk away with the hardware at the end. After all, there’s no trophy for being the best team after 11 games, or even 16 for that matter. It’s all about the playoffs, but until they begin, here’s how I see things so far.

 

NFL Power Rankings Archive3- 4567 - 8 - 9 - 10 - 11 - 12

 

Week 13 NFL Power Rankings

 

1. New York Giants (2) – 10-1 – Most, myself included, probably felt that they were deserving of the top spot a few weeks ago, but the Titans simply kept rolling along. At this point, I think the consensus is that the Giants are probably the team to beat. We’ll see how they are able to maintain their focus and health down the stretch. Next Week: @ WAS

 

2. Tennessee Titans (1) – 10-1 – The Titans have struggled to run the ball in recent weeks, and this time it came back to bite them. Expect Jeff Fischer to use this as an opportunity to rally his troops. Having something left to work on at this point in the season isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Next Week: @ DET (Thanksgiving)

 

3. Pittsburgh Steelers (5) – 8-3 – The Steelers have quietly been doing what we’ve grown accustomed to seeing from them. A strong effective defense, complimented by a conservative yet efficient offense has been the formula that’s kept the Steelers rolling along, and mostly staying under the radar while doing it. Next Week: @ NE

 

4. New York Jets (6) – 8-3 – Although the AFC East is still very much up for grabs, the Jets have gone a long way to cementing their position in control of the race. It appears that Brett Favre was right when he said that he thought he might have a little more football left in him. It looks like the Jets do too. Next Week: vs. DEN

 

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8) – 8-3 – It seems that Jon Gruden has taken his once complex offense and made it plug and play. Despite the rash of injuries to skill position players, the Bucs keep getting it done with a revolving cast of characters on offense, and the defense that the Bucs have been known for. Next Week: vs. NO

 

6. Arizona Cardinals (4) – 7-4 – They held their own with the mighty Giants for just over a half, but clearly still have work to do if they hope to contend with the NFC’s elite. Perhaps the Cards were a bit hasty in phasing Edgerin James out of their game plan altogether. Next Week: @ PHI (Thanksgiving)

 

7. Carolina Panthers (3) – 8-3 – Maybe they were simply due for a letdown. Or maybe, like a lot of us they underestimated the upstart Atlanta Falcons. Whatever the reason for Sunday’s debacle, the NFC South doesn’t allow much margin for error. Even if they can’t get past Tampa though, the Panthers still find themselves in the best position of all of the potential wild cards. Next Week: @ GB

 

8. Indianapolis Colts (9) – 7-4 – Reports of the Colts’ demise appear to have been greatly exaggerated. The Colts are still very much in the thick of the hunt in the AFC, if not the AFC South, and may be proving that they’re even more dangerous with their backs to the wall. Next Week: @ CLE

 

9. Baltimore Ravens (10) – 7-4 – After a few early season stumbles late in games, the Ravens now appear to have the endgame mastered. Keeping teams from getting wide open early may be the key to the Ravens being able to string together a run that leads them to an improbable playoff berth. The Ravens are playing a cold weather style, we’ll see if it plays to their favor now that the weather’s turning. Next Week: @ CIN

 

10. Atlanta Falcons (18) – 7-4 – Consider me sold; these Falcons are for real. They still have their work cut out for them though sitting at 3rd in their division will certainly make the road to a potential playoff berth a bumpy one. Next Week: @ SD

 

11. Denver Broncos (7) – 6-5 – Nothing should surprise you when it comes to this team. Nothing that is, except for the few moments when they actually look like a playoff caliber team. Maybe the Broncos are having trouble focusing because no one in the division looks capable of keeping them from the playoffs anyway. If they limp into the postseason like they’ve played lately though, they could be in for another unforgettable postseason embarrassment. Next Week: @ NYJ

 

12. Washington Redskins (12) – 6-5 – They got a win on Sunday, but I don’t think they did much to dispel concerns surrounding the offense in recent weeks. Wild card spots in the NFC look like they could be awfully tough to come by, and the Giants appear unlikely to let anyone back into the NFC East race. We’ll see if Washington is able to turn up the sense of urgency in the next few weeks. Next Week: vs. NYG

 

13. Chicago Bears (13) – 6-5 – The Bears got back on track last week after back to back losses, and still find themselves in the driver’s seat for the NFC North. If they intend to get into the playoffs and beyond however, they’ll have to find a way to take some of the load off of rookie Matt Forte. Next Week: @ MIN

 

14. New England Patriots (15) – 7-4 – The Patriots look to have found a rhythm, and Matt Cassel has grown from high school quarterback to competent NFL starter in just a few weeks time. Something tells me that the rest of the AFC may be sorry that they didn’t put these Pats away when they had the chance. Next Week: vs. PIT

 

15. Dallas Cowboys (16) – 7-4 – Tony Romo has returned to form, and brought TO back with him to boot. For now it seems that all is well in Cowboy land. We’ll see if they can keep it going now that they all seem to be on the same page once again. Next Week: vs. SEA (Thanksgiving)

 

16. Minnesota Vikings (17) – 6-5 – The Vikings may be hitting their stride, and just in the nick of time. Luckily for them, the rest of the division may have waited for them to get ready to make themselves a factor in this race. The Vikes could be a tough draw in the playoffs, even on the road, with their strong run defense and ridiculous two-headed backfield. Next Week: vs. CHI

 

17. Miami Dolphins (14) – 6-5 – Fool Bellichick once, as the Dolphins did with the advent of the wildcat offense, and credit is due. Try it a second time, and shame on you. Tony Sparano and his Dolphins will have to figure out how to compliment their trickery by simply imposing their will on teams occasionally too. They have the weapons in their arsenal, now they just have to put them to the right use. Next Week: @ ST.L

 

18. Buffalo Bills (25) – 6-5 – Trent Edwards and the Bills certainly made a statement in KC on Sunday. In doing so they have also declared themselves back in the race for the AFC East. We’ll have to wait and see if it’s more than a one-week explosion. Next Week: vs. SF

 

19. San Diego Chargers (19) – 4-7 – I can’t help but feel like these Chargers still have some semblance of a run left in the tank, but with each passing week, it appears less and less likely. As long as the Broncos continue to stumble though, a playoff run will still remain a possibility for this team. Next Week: vs. ATL

 

20. New Orleans Saints (21) – 6-5 – Despite the rash of offensive injuries, this team has still been a major disappointment this season. Especially since, at times, they have played at an elite level. Still inconsistency and the success of the rest of this division will probably be too much for the Saints to overcome this season. Next Week: @ TB

 

21. Green Bay Packers (11) – 5-6 – Forget about the fact that Brett Favre is lighting it up for the Jets in the AFC, the Packers had to see what they had in Aaron Rodgers in this, his 4th season. With that said, they way that Rodgers and these Packers have played at times is the reason why Ted Thompson knew that having Favre around on the bench was not an option. Next Week: vs. CAR

 

22. Philadelphia Eagles (20) – 5-5-1 – The Eagles and Andy Reid appear to be their own worst enemy at this point. With a banged up Brian Westbrook and Correll Buckhalter injured early in the game on Sunday, it’s feasible that Reid benched Donavan McNabb to simply keep him from being killed in the second half against the Ravens. Next Week: vs. AZ (Thanksgiving)

 

23. Houston Texans (24) – 4-7 – They’re clearly playing for the future at this point, but offensively at least, that future looks like it could be pretty bright. If they could put together a consistent defense, they might hope to contend in the talent laden AFC South. Next Week: vs. JAX

 

24. Jacksonville Jaguars (23) – 4-7 – The Jags are easily the most talented team in the bottom third of the rankings, on both sides of the ball it would seem. Something however keeps this team from being able to believe in themselves enough to play a game from start to finish. I suspect there will be big changes in Jacksonville this off-season. Next Week: @ HOU

 

25. Oakland Raiders (31) – 3-8 – The Raiders and Tom Cable are doing the best that they can with what they’ve got, and are scaring some teams in the process. In the big picture, they’re probably overmatched talent wise in most weeks, but they do have a few exciting young players to build around. Next Week: vs. KC

 

26. Cleveland Browns (22) – 4-7 – New quarterback, same old problems. Now they’re back to the old quarterback it seems, but the Browns need a lot more than a new QB to ignite this offense. They might need a defibrillator to get their collective heart going again. Next Week: vs. IND

 

27. San Francisco 49ers (26) – 3-8 – They’ve shuffled coaches, coordinators, quarterbacks and systems, but the Niners still appear no closer to getting to the playoffs any time soon. In fact they may be headed in the opposite direction altogether. Next Week: @ BUF

 

28. Seattle Seahawks (27) – 2-9 – They’ve put up much more of a fight it would seem in recent weeks, but still the Seahawks are nowhere close to where they expected to be at this point in the season. It looks like it’s safe to say that 2008 in Seattle may be the worst sports season any city has ever seen. Next Week: @ DAL (Thanksgiving)

 

29. Cincinnati Bengals (28) – 1-9-1 – It’d be nice to say that the Bengals have played better than their 1-9-1 record would indicate, but it’s probably not true. The Bengals still have enough firepower to be a handful for just about anyone, but a sustained period of success is highly unlikely. Next Week: vs. BAL

 

30. Kansas City Chiefs (28) – 1-10 – They seemed to have found an offensive rhythm of late, but simply can’t stop the run against anyone. The Cheifs should provide us with plenty of good highlights, both their own and their opponents, this season, but probably won’t be much of a factor in most games. Next Week: @ OAK

 

31. St. Louis Rams (30) – 2-9 – The Rams went from freefall, to seemingly righting their ship, and back to freefall in a few short weeks. The good news is that in the NFC West, they can still reasonably hope to come back next year with a chance to be competitive again. Next Week: vs. MIA

 

32. Detroit Lions (32) – 0-11 – Now that the Titans have gotten a blemish on their perfect record, I suppose the attention will shift to Detroit, and their record of perfect ineptitude so far. Some say it’s harder to go winless than undefeated in today’s NFL, for what it’s worth I never understood that logic, but the Lions are doing it and making it look easy too. Next Week: vs. TEN

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

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Good to see fellow rookies get a chance

Posted on 21 November 2008 by joeflacco

It sure will be good to get back to our stadium and see (and hear) all the fans for Sunday’s game against Philadelphia.  We put that New York loss behind us right away and started preparing for the Eagles.  We’ve had a good week of practice and we all know Philadelphia has an outstanding organization with players who know how to win.  But we need a win too.  I guess that’s why we have to play the game on Sunday, right?

I’m not sure about the status of Jared Gaither, Willie Anderson or Adam Terry for Sunday’s game but it will be a great opportunity for other players to step up and play and that’s a good thing for them.  David (Hale) and O’Neil (Cousins) both got some snaps in New York and even though it came in the 4th quarter I know they were grateful for the opportunity.  They’ve been working hard all year for their chance and as a fellow rookie, I felt good for them on Sunday when they got in against the Giants.  I hope Jared and Willie are both healthy enough to play again soon, if not this Sunday, but David and O’Neil will do just fine if called upon.

It’s going to be a lot fun over these last six games.  We’ve put ourselves in a pretty good position 10 games into the season.  We just need to keep having fun and stay focused and we’ll be fine.  I have a lot of friends and family coming down for the game so I need to treat them and the rest of the fans to a win.  I’ll be doing my best for all of you, that’s for sure.  Have a great Thanksgiving next week!

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Ravens vs. Eagles – Your Predictions

Posted on 20 November 2008 by Alex Thomas

Finally, the Ravens return to Baltimore and get to play in front of the home crowd. Coming off an embarrassing performance in the Meadowlands, the Ravens defense is poised to play their best game of the season.

Brian Westbrook is battling an ankle injury and has not yet participated in practice this week. Westbrook is the support beam for the Eagles offense. If he doesn’t play, the Eagles offense takes a totally different shape. Donovan McNabb did not play well last week against a rather pathetic Bengals defense.

Unfortunately, on the other side of the football, things aren’t looking so good. It looks like Jared Gaither won’t play, and Willie Anderson has been limited in practice all week. With the Eagles defense leading the NFL in sacks with 36, Joe Flacco could be running for his life on Sunday. When I last saw Derrick Mason he was in a sling, and he told reporters earlier this week that he is uncertain about whether or not he’ll play.

I think that if the Ravens were completely healthy, this would be an easy Baltimore victory. But the banged up offensive line creates some severe personnel match-up problems. Oneal Cousins trying to block Trent Cole and Darren Howard? Yeah…right…

The Ravens need this win with Miami and New England breathing down their neck in the AFC wild card race. Baltimore, Miami, and New England all have 6-4 records, but at this point the Ravens hold the tie-breaker. And either the Dolphins or the Patriots will pick up a win this week as both teams will square off in Miami.

My prediction: The Ravens know what’s at stake and will find a way to win this week, but Joe Flacco must be protected in order for that to happen. Look for more Troy Smith this week.

Ravens – 23

Eagles -16

Pivotal match-up: Ravens Offensive Line vs. Eagles Defensive Line.

Where it could all go wrong: The old adage: protect the football and protect the quarterback. If both of those things happen, the Ravens will win this game. I don’t see the Eagles doing much on offense with an unhealthy Brian Westbrook.

Surprising statistic: The Eagles are 37-1 when McNabb has a passer rating over 100.

Last Week’s winner would have been Ravenator if he would have picked the Giants to win, but the check mark goes to Johnny Rocket, who predicted a 31-11 Ravens loss. My pick: 23-20 Giants. Actual score: 30-10 Giants.

Week 10 Winner: My man Franchise gets the check mark, predicting a 31-10 Ravens victory. Remember when Ozzie Newsome was getting verbally crucified on the airwaves? I guess all of us should trust the Franchise. My pick: 29-12 Ravens. Actual Score: 41-13 Ravens.

Week 9 Winner: Johnny Rocket picked the closest score, predicting a 22-16 Ravens win. I don’t think anyone could have predicted the Ravens to put up 37 points on the road. My pick: 23-17 Browns. Actual score: 37-27 Ravens.

Week 8 winner: Nestminder is our first back-to-back winner, picking the Ravens to win 24-6. We had a record-low in the number of predictions received, but we can rebound this week. We’ll chalk that one up to the new website. My pick: 27-6 Ravens. Actual score: 29-10 Ravens

Week 7 winner: Nestminder picked a 20-13 Ravens victory and Polostat was a close second. My pick: 24-16 Ravens. Actual score: 27-13 Ravens.

Week 6 winner: Johnny Rocket correctly picked against the Ravens, per usual, predicting a 32-8 Colts victory. My pick: 28-23 Colts. Actual score: 31-3 Colts.

Week 5 winner: Columbia Ken picked the closest score, predicting a 17-13 Titans victory. My pick: 17-9 Ravens. Actual score: 13-10 Titans

Week 4 winner: Jon R. reluctantly picked a 24-20 win for the Steelers. My pick: 13-10 Ravens. Actual score: 23-20 Steelers (OT)

Week 3 winner: EazyE picked a 23-13 win for the Ravens vs. Cleveland. My pick: 23-13 Ravens. Actual score: 24-10 Ravens.

What are your predictions this week?

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Week 12 Fantasy Start Rankings – Every Position

Posted on 20 November 2008 by Thyrl Nelson

Just for the sake of making everything easier, I’ve decided to post the week 12 Fantasy Start Rankings for all 6 positions in one place. It’s the same start rankings that you can find on the bottoms of each of the Positional Power Rankings for week 12. You can locate those power rankings by using the links at the bottom of this page too.

 

Listed below are the formulary start rankings for each of the 6 positions, with their formulary number listed in parentheses next to them. The formulary rankings are gotten using the “secret fantasy flavor formula”, it’s basically 2 parts player performance, 1 part defensive expectations against them this week, with a few variables thrown in for injuries and anomalies.

 

As news becomes available over the course of the weekend, I’ll make notes here too, so keep checking back. And at the end of the day, trust your gut, and have fun. That’s why we play the games after all anyway. And good luck to you this week as the playoffs approach.

 

QUARTERBACKS

 

1. Peyton Manning (15) @SD

2. Aaron Rodgers (21) @ NO

3. Jay Cutler (22) vs. OAK

4. Tony Romo (22) vs. SF

5. Kurt Warner (29) vs. NYG

6. Shaun Hill (31) @ DAL

7. Brady Quinn (31) vs. HOU

8. Drew Brees (35) vs. GB

9. Eli Manning (36) @ AZ

10. Phillip Rivers (40) vs. IND

11. Matt Cassel (40) @ MIA

12. Kyle Orton (42) @ ST.L

13. Tyler Thigpen (43) vs. BUF

14. Gus Frerotte (43) @ JAX

15. Jeff Garcia (44) @ DET

16. Donavan McNabb (45) @ BAL

17. Jason Campbell (48) @ SEA

18. David Garrard (52) vs. MIN

19. Brett Favre (53) @ TEN

20. Chad Pennington (57) vs. NE

21. Sage Rosenfels (61) @ CLE

22. Kerry Collins (61) vs. NYJ

23. Matt Ryan (62) vs. CAR

24. Joe Flacco (64) vs. PHI

25. Jake Delhomme (68) @ ATL

26. Ben Roethlisberger (69) vs. CIN

27. JaMarcus Russell (70) @ DEN*about the same if it’s Walter or Tuisasopo

28. Trent Edwards (78) @ KC

29. Marc Bulger (78) vs. CHI

30. Ryan Fitzpatrick (81) @ PIT

31. Daunte Culpepper (86) vs. TB

32. Matt Hasselbeck (87) vs. WAS

 

 

RUNNINGBACKS

 

1. Clinton Portis (19) @ SEA

2. Adrian Peterson (22) @ JAX

3. Matt Forte (22) @ ST.L

4. Frank Gore (23) @ DAL

5. Marion Barber (27) vs. SF

6. Thomas Jones (28) @ TEN

7. Reggie Bush (32) vs. GB

8. Brian Westbrook (33) @ BAL

9. Willie Parker (34) vs. CIN

10. Brandon Jacobs (35) @ AZ *watch his injury status

11. Marshawn Lynch (37) @ KC

12. LaDanian Tomlinson (38) vs. IND

13. Michael Turner (43) vs. CAR

14. DeAngelo Williams (43) @ ATL

15. Steve Slaton (45) @ CLE

16. Maurice Jones-Drew (46) vs. MIN

17. Ronnie Brown (48) vs. NE

18. Jamal Lewis (51) vs. HOU

19. Chris Johnson (56) vs. NYJ

20. Larry Johnson (56) vs. BUF

21. Steven Jackson (60) vs. CHI *keep an eye on his status

22. Joseph Addai (65)@ SD

23. LenDale White (66) vs. NYJ

24. Ryan Grant (69) @ NO

25. Darren McFadden (71) @ DEN

26. Jonathan Stewart (73) @ ATL

27. Warrick Dunn (74) @ DET

28. Sammy Morris (76) @ MIA

29. Mewelde Moore (77) vs. CIN

30. Tim Hightower (78) vs. NYG

31. Kevin Smith (79) vs. TB

32. Willis McGahee (83) vs. PHI *keep an eye on his status

33. Deuce McAllister (84) vs. GB

34. Derrick Ward (85) @ AZ

35. Ahman Green (85) @ CLE

36. LeRon McClain (87) vs. PHI *bump 2 or 3 spots if McGahee can’t go

37. Jerome Harrison (87) vs. HOU

38. Peyton Hillis (89) vs. OAK

39. Justin Fargas (95)vs. DEN *bump 15 spots if McFadden can’t go

40. Ray Rice (97) vs. PHI *keep him here regardless of McGahee’s status

41. Dominic Rhodes (97) @ SD

42. Jerious Norwood (99) vs. CAR

43. Julius Jones (99) vs. WAS

44. Leon Washington (100) @ TEN

45. Antonio Pittman (102) vs. CHI *bump 8 to 10 spots if Steven Jackson can’t go

46. BenJarvis Green-Ellis (104) @ MIA

47. Ricky Williams (106) vs. NE

48. Chester Taylor (112) @ JAX

49. Kevin Faulk (114) @ MIA

50. Kenneth Darby (114) vs. CHI *bump 3 or 4 spots if Jackson can’t go

 

 

 

WIDE RECEIVERS

 

1. Santana Moss (11) @ SEA

2. Anquan Boldin (15) vs. NYG

3. Larry Fitzgerald (17) vs. NYG

4. Greg Jennings (20) @ NO

5. Andre Johnson (25) @ CLE

6. Bernard Berrian (27) @ JAX

7. Steve Smith (29) *CAR @ ATL

8. Calvin Johnson (32) vs. TB

9. Roddy White (34) vs. CAR

10. Reggie Wayne (34) @ SD

11. Hines Ward (38) vs. CIN

12. Kevin Walter (41) @ CLE

13. Brandon Marshall (45) vs. OAK

14. Justin Gage (45) vs. NYJ

15. Terrell Owens (48) vs. SF

16. Eddie Royal (49) vs. OAK

17. DeWayne Bowe (49) vs. BUF

18. Randy Moss (50) @ MIA

19. Lee Evans (56) @ KC

20. Antonio Bryant (59) @ DET

21. TJ Houshmandzadeh (60) @ PIT

22. Donnie Avery (63) vs. CHI

23. Lance Moore (67) vs. GB

24. Vincent Jackson (68) vs. IND

25. Wes Welker (68) @ MIA

26. DeSean Jackson (69) @ BAL

27. Plaxico Burress (74) @ AZ

28. Donald Driver (76) @ NO

29. Braylon Edwards (77) vs. HOU

30. Chris Chambers (80) vs. IND

31. Laverneus Coles (81) @ TEN

32. Jehrrico Cotchery (83) @ TEN

33. Matt Jones (84) vs. MIN

34. Mushin Muhammad (91) @ ATL

35. Derrick Mason (92) vs. PHI *watch his injury status

36. DeVery Henderson (95) vs. GB

37. Steve Breaston (95) vs. NYG

38. Issac Bruce (98) @ DAL

39. Brandon Lloyd (98) @ ATL

40. Mark Bradley (101) vs. BUF

41. Nate Washington (104) vs. CIN

42. Kevin Curtis (105) @ BAL

43. Ted Ginn Jr. (109) vs. NE

44. Sinorice Moss (110) @ AZ

45. Michael Jenkins (116) vs. CAR

46. Santonio Holmes (117) vs. CIN

47. Marvin Harrison (118) @ SD

48. Greg Camarillo (121) vs. NE

49. Malcolm Floyd (124) vs. IND

50. Ricky Williams (124) vs. NE

51. Antoine Randle-El (127) @ SEA

52. Anthony Gonzalez (128) @ SD

53. Rasheid Davis (132) @ ST.L

54. Tory Holt (133) vs. CHI

55. Bryant Johnson (134) @ DAL

56. Jabar Gafney (134) @ MIA

57. Hank Baskett (135) vs. BAL

58. Amani Toomer (136) @ AZ

59. Marques Colston (137) vs. GB

60. Chad Johnson (140) @ PIT *out insert Chris Henry here

61. Patrick Crayton (140) vs. SF

62. Devin Hester (144) @ ST.L

63. Koren Robinson (149) vs. WAS

64. Bobby Wade (151) @ JAX

65. Myles Austin (152) vs. SF  out

66. Sidney Rice (153) @ JAX

67. Marty Booker (156) @ ST.L

68. Deion Branch (157) vs. WAS

69. Ike Hilliard (161) @ DET

70. Reggie Brown (163) @ BAL

71. Chansi Stuckey (165) @ TEN

72. John Standeford (170) vs. TB

73. Brandon Stokley (171) vs. OAK

74. Mike Walker (174) @ DET

75. Steve Smith (174)*NYG @ AZ

 

 

TIGHT ENDS

 

1. Dallas Clark (13) @ SD

2. Kellen Winslow Jr. (15) vs. HOU

3. Tony Scheffler (20) vs. OAK

4. Bo Scaife (24) vs. NYJ

5. Antonio Gates (28) vs. IND

6. Owen Daniels (29) @ CLE

7. Tony Gonzalez (33) vs. BUF

8. Kevin Boss (34) @ AZ

9. Anthony Fasano (34) vs. NE

10. Dustin Keller (34) @ TEN

11. Zach Miller (34) @ DEN

12. Billy Miller (38) vs. GB

13. Jerramy Stevens (39) @ DET

14. Jason Witten (42) vs. SF

15. Visanthe Schiancoe (43) @ JAX

16. Chris Cooley (45) @ SEA

17. Greg Olsen (53) @ ST.L

18. Alex Smith (53) @ DET

19. Mercedes Lewis (55) vs. MIN

20. Todd Heap (55) vs. PHI

21. Tom Santi (61) @ SD

22. John Carlson (63) vs. WAS

23. Daniel Graham (64) @ CLE

24. LJ Smith (66) @ BAL

25. Derek Fine (69) @ KC

26. Steve Heiden (73) vs. HOU

27. Vernon Davis (76) @ DAL

28. Dante Rosario (78) @ ATL

29. Donald Lee (79) @ NO

30. Heath Miller (80) vs. CIN

31. Martellus Bennett (80) vs. SF

32. Brent Celek (80) @ BAL

33. David Martin (80) vs. NE

34. Alge Crumpler (80) vs. NYJ

35. Jeremy Shockey (82) vs. GB

 

 

KICKERS

 

1. Mason Crosby (16) @ NO

2. Garrett Hartley (16) vs. GB

3. Stephen Gostkowski (24) @ MIA

4. Matt Bryant (26) @ DET

5. Phil Dawson (29) vs. HOU

6. David Akers (30) @ BAL

7. Lawrence Tynes (32) @ AZ *no difference if it’s Carney

8. Rian Lindell (33) @ KC

9. Jason Elam (36) vs. CAR

10. Shaun Suisham (36) @ SEA

11. Nate Kaeding (39) vs. IND

12. Joe Nedney (41) @ DAL

13. Matt Prater (44) vs. CAR

14. Jay Feeley (46) @ TEN

15. Ryan Longwell (46) @ JAX

16. Robbie Gould (46) @ ST.L

17. Rob Bironas (47) vs. NYJ

18. Sebastian Janikowski (48) @ DEN

19. Josh Brown (50) vs. CHI

20. Neil Rackers (54) vs. NYG

21. Josh Scobee (58) vs. MIN

22. John Kasay (61) @ ATL

23. Jeff Reed (61) vs. CIN

24. Nick Folk (65) vs. SF

25. Jason Hanson (69) vs. TB

26. Connor Barth (69) vs. BUF

27. Matt Stover (71) vs. PHI

28. Olindo Mare (75) vs. WAS

29. Kris Brown (77) @ CLE

30. Adam Vinatieri (77) @ SD

31. Shayne Graham (79) @ PIT

32. Dan Carpenter (83) vs. NE

 

 

DEFENSE / SPECIAL TEAMS

 

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7) @ DET

2. Pittsburgh Steelers (16) vs. CIN

3. Chicago Bears (21) @ ST.L

4. Green Bay Packers (27) @ NO

5. Philadelphia Eagles (27) @ BAL

6. Tennessee Titans (30) vs. NYJ

7. New York Jets (36) @ TEN

8. New York Giants (37) @ AZ

9. Baltimore Ravens (42) vs. PHI

10. Miami Dolphins (42) vs. NE

11. Seattle Seahawks (42) vs. WAS

12. San Francisco 49ers (43) @ DAL

13. Dallas Cowboys (43) vs. SF

14. Jacksonville Jaguars (44) vs. MIN

15. Cleveland Browns (46) vs. HOU

16. Minnesota Vikings (48) @ JAX

17. Oakland Raiders (49) @ DEN

18. Atlanta Falcons (50) vs. CAR

19. Buffalo Bills (50) @ KC

20. Arizona Cardinals (51) vs. NYG

21. Carolina Panthers (52) @ ATL

22. Washington Redskins (58) @ SEA

23. Kansas City Chiefs (63) vs. BUF

24. New England Patriots (65) @ MIA

25. Cincinnati Bengals (67) @ PIT

26. Denver Broncos (67) vs. OAK

27. San Diego Chargers (68) vs. IND

28. New Orleans Saints (72) vs. GB

29. Indianapolis Colts (73) @ SD

30. Houston Texans (80) @ CLE

31. St. Louis Rams (81) vs. CHI

32. Detroit Lions (87) vs. TB

 

 

Week 12 Fantasy QB Rankings and Previews

 

Week 12 Fantasy RB Rankings and Previews

 

Week 12 Fantasy WR Rankings and Previews

 

Week 12 Fantasy TE Rankings and Previews

 

Week 12 Fantasy K Rankings and Previews

 

Week 12 Fantasy D/ST Rankings and Previews

 

Peace,

T

(thyrl@wnst.net)

 

 

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