Quarterback: If you are in a league where Josh Freeman is available, he is worth a backup roster spot. While it seems like several teams are contemplating moves or have struggling quarterbacks, Freeman’s job is completely safe.
I just would not start him this week. Several teams have already made quarterback moves. Pass on the Buffalo situation. Jimmy Clausen is intriguing, but still a rookie. The spot start in deep leagues should be Bruce Gradkowski in Oakland, as he gets to face off against Arizona this week.
Running Back: Mike Tolbert and Jason Snelling are going to be waiver pickups this week. I would just monitor this situation as both Mathews and Turner may be back. This will be a situation to monitor throughout the week. Both of these guys are the backup options in good offenses, so they are rosterable. Even if the starters do not miss the next game, they may be called upon at some point this season. I don’t think there is any doubt that the Bills were showcasing Marshawn Lynch for a trade. I think he is worth a pickup in the short term to see if that happens. He wouldn’t be the first case of an early pick who wore out his welcome in one place and then went on to have value elsewhere. Danny Ware may be worth a flier in New York as Brandon Jacobs has looked bad and is acting like a malcontent. With Jones-Drew nursing a knee injury at the start of the season and off to a slow start, Rashad Jennings is someone to monitor. In deeper leagues where you are desperate for a starter because of injuries, Toby Gerhart may be worth a flier start. The Lions have given up lots of fantasy points to running backs, and while Peterson is in line for the majority of that, Gerhart may get a few opportunities. If people have been dropping Michael Bush, I don’t like Darren McFadden’s chances of remaining healthy if he’s going to carry the ball 30 times, like he did against St. Louis. Watch the injury report to see if Bush, who was listed as questionable but sat out, is cleared this week with the hand injury. There should be fantasy points to go around against Arizona.
Wide Receiver: I talked about taking a chance on a guy like Louis Murphy last week as a deep start, but if he is still available, go get him now. Both Darrius Heyward-Bey and Murphy are waiver wire options this week against Arizona; after the quarterback change last week, Gradkowski got the ball to both. Demaryius Thomas had a big game against Seattle. One of the Denver wide receivers will emerge as a good fantasy receiver, so it’s worth taking a chance that the rookie will make an impact. Mike Williams of Seattle was a pickup and stash last week because of the bad matchup against Champ Bailey. He had only 1 catch, but now, just like Mike Sims-Walker, he gets San Diego instead. I think he is a start this week. (Reggie Wayne gets Bailey this week, by the way).
Tight End: I highlighted several tight ends that had decent weeks last week, like Hernandez and Moeaki. This week, the situation to watch if you need a tight end to start in a pinch is Martellus Bennett in Dallas, as Witten suffered a concussion on Sunday and we do not have word on his status. The Texans have allowed the most fantasy points to tight ends this season so far, so he may even be worth a flier if Witten is active.
Kicker: I’m death on kickers, and this year I’ve decided to jinx Stephen Gostkowski, so yeah, don’t listen to me about kickers.
Defense/Special Teams: Oakland gets to play Arizona. Tampa Bay gets Pittsburgh at home in a game where we are not sure who the Steelers will be starting. We just know it won’t be Dixon or Roethlisberger. [photos via Getty]