Fantasy Futures: Washington vs. Kansas City

Back from the bye week and getting healthier. Kansas City will welcome back some old faces to the team this weekend. Perhaps the best news Kansas City has had this year will be the return of All-Pro left tackle Willie Roaf. With Roaf back on the offensive line, that should free up tight end Tony Gonzalez from excessive pass blocking duties. Roaf's absence shook up the offensive production, once again proving in football it all starts upfront.

Along with Roaf, offensive guard John Welbourn returns and could contribute some at right tackle due to right tackle Kevin Sampson's unfortunate collapse during the bye week. Sampson is back in Kansas City but won't be available for Sunday's game.

Defensively, Kansas City welcomes cornerback Eric Warfield from his four-game suspension. Warfield should start immediately and shake off the rust by playing, however, coach Vermeil was quoted earlier this week expressing his confidence in current starter Dexter McCleon.

Regardless, the flow of the game should dictate who plays, then again the flow of the game should allow the quarterback to audible at the line of scrimmage, but for some reason that's not an option in this offense. Anyway, the infusion of experienced talent will get the Chiefs back to their winning ways.

The Redskins come to Arrowhead with a staunch defense and a focused run game. The relationship between quarterback Mark Brunell and wide out Santana Moss is developing into a more formidable duo in the league and as a fantasy owner the surprising Brunell is decent start this week, though Moss is probably the best fantasy starter from the Redskins squad this week. Let's take a deeper look into what you can expect from this match-up.

Trent Green —After losing at home to the Eagles, the Chiefs are looking for redemption. Though Denver quarterback Jake Plummer managed a pitiful 93 yards passing last Sunday, Kansas City should rebound offensively this week and produce some numbers. Don't expect a mind boggling fantasy day from Green though, as the Redskins defense is one of the best in the league. Expect 200 yards and at least one touchdown against the Washington secondary.

Mark Brunell— Brunell's 53 pass attempts were the highest of the season for the Washington quarterback. But playing from behind in the rain can force offenses into desperate situations. But the pass attempts aren't the scary thing; it's that Denver was unable to put any pressure on Brunell though out most of the day. Washington's focus on pass protection will limit Kansas City's ability to defend the pass and Brunell is an experienced, accurate passer who could have a decent day through the air. Expect 230+ yards and one score, but two is more likely.

Priest Holmes/Larry Johnson—Though I think both players will see plenty of touches this week, Holmes is the only surefire back. Johnson has breakaway ability but has been limited the last couple of games. Start Priest as always and be happy with his 90 yards and two scores. To utilize his game, the Chiefs may need to find him with passes out of the backfield. Also expect to see the trusty toss left work to perfection with the return of Roaf. Johnson is a solid play as a flex back.

Clinton Portis —Fantasy wise you'd expect Portis to be the better play this week. He doesn't really share carries and the Redskins are committed to running the football. But the Chiefs' defense is stout against the run and has shown a liability against the pass. Head coach Joe Gibbs is no dummy, so look for him to attack the Chiefs weakness and throw the ball this week. Portis should see about 22 carries for 75 yards and maybe 25 yards receiving with a score.

Eddie Kennison/Samie Parker—Parker hasn't proved much this season and is likely a free agent in your league. Let him lie till he proves fantasy value. Kennison is a different story and a solid start this week. Tony Gonzalez is likely to receive plenty of attention defensively and the Redskins like to utilize man-to-man coverage. He has the speed to get free this week and should catch 5 balls for 90 yards and a possible score.

Santana Moss —Many are expecting big numbers from Moss this week and I agree he has a great opportunity to score fantasy wise. But the secret's out and the Chiefs should do a decent job covering him. He may catch a few here and there, but the big play will have to come from someone else. Perhaps David Patten is worth a start in deeper leagues, as he should find himself single covered by McCleon most of the day. Moss goes for 7 receptions and 100 yards.

Tony Gonzalez—He has yet to break out, and this should be the week. Gonzalez complained about his production and the offense will focus on getting him involved. His fantasy value is down right now, but this week he is on the way to reclaiming his status. Expect 80 yards and a score.

Chris Cooley —Cooley comes out of the backfield and off the line of scrimmage. His opportunities come from different parts of the field and should catch several balls this week, but I can't see him outshining Gonzalez at Arrowhead. He'll finish the day with 35 yards receiving.

Lawrence Tynes —The Redskins defense could keep Kansas City from piling up the touchdowns. He is a serviceable start this week and should produce some field goal opportunities.

Nick Novak —He'll get a couple of shots this week, but he's a rookie and it's hard to start a rookie kicker in fantasy when there are so many options out there.

Kansas City —If you're rewarded for points allowed, I can't see the Redskins piling it on this week. But don't expect many turnovers or sacks this week, as the Redskins are a very conservative and protection based team. Look elsewhere for your defense.

Washington —One of the toughest defenses in the NFL. But they do it very workmanlike and don't have flashy playmakers, just guys that play within the scheme. But the Chiefs are at home and I can't see how you can chance starting a defense that could give up 24 points. Plus the Chiefs' pass protection should improve this week.