Huddlegeeks Fantasy Picks

Here are some names you should try to get into your fantasy lineup this morning...

Week 5 of the NFL season is upon us and along with it brings many surprises on the fantasy football landscape.  Former fantasy studs have been reduced to liabilities in your lineup and fantasy no-names are slowly becoming household names to die-hard fantasy players.  This has to be one of the biggest years in recent memory for formerly obscure players bursting onto the fantasy football scene.

For example, those who selected Aaron Brooks and Randy Moss on draft day thinking they had a lethal QB/WR combination, probably have a very sour taste in their mouths since neither player ranks in the top 50 of fantasy rankings for their respective positions.  But the lucky fantasy owners who drafted Bears quarterback Rex Grossman and wide receiver Bernard Berrian find themselves with two players who are currently rank in the top five of fantasy rankings for their respective positions.  Grossman is currently tied for second in the league with eight touchdown passes and Berrian is tied for first with 3 TD catches.  Who would have thunk it!?

The running back position is not without its surprise players either.  Many fantasy owners selected Tampa Bay's Carnell Williams in the first round of their fantasy drafts thinking they could ride a Cadillac to fantasy success.  But if you turn to actual fantasy production, you'll see that Williams is waddling in fantasy obscurity, being ranked in the same neighborhood as journeyman running backs like Kevin Faulk, Travis Henry and Mack Strong, respectively.  While Williams is struggling, Frank Gore, who had an average draft position of 76 in drafts this preseason, is the second-highest scoring back in the league right now.

Just these couple of examples shows that in fantasy football, just like in life, there are no sure things.  You have to be prepared when you team doesn't produce as well as you thought.  Always keep your eye on the waiver wire and keep you mind open to trades for ways to help your team through the tough times!

Here are a few players that you might want to take a look at plugging into your starting lineup this week to either turn around your luck or keep your success going! They may not be the top names in fantasy football, but most are the 'in between' guys that you might have to make a tough decision on. The good fantasy owner is able to pick these players out from a crowd and stick them in their lineup for fantasy success!

QB – Bryron Leftwich – Leftwich is currently ranked at the 7th best quarterback in fantasy football and has a great matchup this week as he faces the N.Y. Jets.  The Jets currently rank 20th in the league in fantasy pass defense, giving up just under 240 yards per game passing.  Look for Leftwitch to hook up with his oversized wide receivers in this game and bring you some quality fantasy points.

RB – Joe Addai – Addai and Domonic Rhodes have been splitting carries for the first four games of the season with Rhodes having the slight edge 59 to 46.  While we think both backs will be a good start this week against a struggling Titans defense, we are giving the edge to Addai.  The Titans rank dead last in the NFL in run defense, allowing 177 yards per game on the ground and will be missing big defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth, who is serving a suspension.  Opponents have also rushed for a league high, eight touchdowns on the Titans.  Look for Addai to add to this total and maybe see his most action of this young season.

RB – Frank Gore – After getting off to a hot start, Gore has run into some problems with ball security and a rib injury.  Niners coach Mike Nolan came out this week and showed support for his running back and vows to stick with him through this tough spell.  We expect Gore to bounce back this week against a Raiders defense that ranks 21st in the league at stopping the run from a fantasy perspective.  Gore may be able to break off a long TD run this week since the Raiders give up an average of over 145 rushing yards per game. Owners in leagues that reward for longer TDs may want to note this statistic!

WR – Isaac Bruce – Bruce had a nice week last week, catching 7 balls for 100 yards and a TD.  We thought Bruce was ready for a bounce back year and, so far, we have been correct.  Bruce should have continued success this week while facing a Packers defense that ranks 29th against the pass from a fantasy perspective and has allowed 7 TD's through the air thus far.  The Rams offense seems to be getting back on track after putting up 41 points against the Lions last week.  While this game is going to be played outdoors, we still like the fantasy potential of Bruce this week.

WR – Amani Toomer – Toomer has been a pleasant surprise to fantasy owners so far this season, with 3 TD catches through 3 games.  He will be facing a Redskins secondary that has been banged up and currently ranks 28th against the pass from a fantasy perspective and has given up 8 TD's through the air.  Plaxico Burress had a rough outing in the team's last game and quarterback, Eli Manning could start looking Toomer's way more often, since he is the more consistent receiver catching the ball.  Expect good yardage and another TD out of this 11 year veteran in this important division matchup.

TE – Heath Miller – Miller has been up and down so far in this young season.  After recording over 100 yards receiving and a TD in his first game this season, the second year tight end posted only 4 catches for 45 yards in his next two outings.  We expect to see his cathes and yardage total increase this week as the Steeler will face an aggressive Chargers defense.  Expect Steeler's quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger to look Miller's way when the Chargers turn up the heat on him.

DEF – New Orleans Saints – The Saints have been the surprise team of the season so far, sitting at 3-1.  They will be facing a Tampa Bay team that will start rookie QB Bruce Gradowski at quarterback.  The Bucs have the worst rushing offense in the league, averaging only 43.3 yards per game on the ground.  Expect the Saints to try to confuse the rookie into mistakes and turnovers all day after they shut down the Bucs running game in the early going. 

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