Josh Turel: It looks as if once again Joey Harrington will bear the burden of making something happen for the offense. The run game has been non existent, which has led to the passing game seeing most of the action. For yardage, Joey is a decent option, he's definetly gonna see his fair share of tosses this week, but for touchdown bias scoring systems, he has not produced enough in this category to warrant a start, and considering his interceptions already (6), he's a shaky start in just about any league.
Adrian Donofrio: Harrington's touchdown to interception ratio in the past six games is 0-6. That is simply unacceptable. I expect him to break out of the zero touchdown slump, but I don't really think he's going to go without an interception here. Denver's defense isn't weak by an means. He needs to shake himself out of this slump before he earns a start in your league.
Shawn Bryson/Olandis Gary
Josh Turel: The running game is starting to get sorted out, file this under good or bad news? The hopes for this group haven't been realized as none of them has looked much better than the other. Shawn Bryson performed decent against the Vikings, but will face a much tougher run defense this week. I still expect Gary to get some carries as well, which decreases Bryson's value as well. I wouldn't expect either of these guys to surpass 50 yards, and I doubt either will find the endzone.
Adrian Donofrio: Neither of these guys can score any further from the 5 yard line. I wouldn't start them. Guys like TJ Duckett or Michael Pittman are probably available in your league, and they will both be better starts. Even though Bryson did decently in the first quarter of the Vikings game, coach Mariucci stated that Olandis Gary would get the ball more. Huh? Yeah, don't start these guys. You should be ashamed if they're taking up one of your bench spots.
JT: Most likely the Lions top fantasy player this week. He will match up against Deltha O' Neal who is inconsistent and susceptible to the deep ball. However, I see the system being Rogers worst enemy. O'Neal is superb in covering the underneath routes, he is very quick and aggressive against the short to intermidiate passing game in other word, the west coast offense. If Rogers is let loose down the sideline, he could bring in a touchdown or two. Also consider that since the Lions will likely pass the ball majority of the time, Rogers should shine. I expect 80+ yards, and a touchdown. If you got him, plug em into your starting lineup.
AD: Even with the loss of Denard Walker, who Rogers faced last week, the Broncos probably won't have to worry about a whole lot in this matchup. Aside from Rogers' 2 touchdown game, he hasn't done much yet. Even when you consider that game, he only had little over 30 yards. O'Neal won't be able to jam him as well as the other corners he has seen, but will likely be able to run right along side him. Which means Rogers will need to make plays on the ball, either outjumping or simply outmuscling O'Neal for the ball. It's a risk to start Rogers. But feelings here say he will have a huge breakout game before the season ends.
JT: Harrington was looking for Hakim quite often against the Vikings, and Az gets into a favorable matchup this week with Lenny Walls. However, Hakim hasn't proven yet that he can turn in a quality fantasy performance, so until he does, I would avoid him.
AD: Look at it this way, Hakim is a much better start over Bill Schroeder. Hakim is likely to get punt returning duties as well, which he is always a threat. That also means if your league counts special teams yards, he could be worth a start in your third slot. If the Lions draw up a few screens and underneath routes for Az, he could turn one of them into six points. I expect at least 60 yards and a possible TD from him. That alone dopesn't really warrant a start, but when you take his punt returns into consideration, he looks like a possibility.
JT: Last week I went out on a limb and called a surprising Schroeder performance, and like most of his past fantasy owners, I was burned. Az Hakim is back, and will start from the #2 slot. With no more starting and Rogers, Hakim getting most of the looks, steer clear of Billy.
AD: Schroeder has done about as much as the running backs have. Yeah, you heard me. I wouldn't start Bill until he proves himself. Of course, it's not all up to him. He has to have the cornerback trip in order to get open. And Joey has to give him the ball. Until Schroeder can show some consistency, I wouldn't even have him on my team.
JT: Big dissapointment thus far, Ricks has been very inconsistent catching the ball, and is starting to lose Harringtons trust. He's been a non factor most of the year fantasy wise, and like Hakim, until he can put in a solid fantasy day and show that he is ready to perform weekly, then he is one to avoid.
AD: He has probably been the biggest disappointment on offense this year for this Lions. He was expected to be a big x-factor for the Lions, and garner a lot of yards. He hasn't been the deep threat he was last year. He hasn't even been the short threat he was last year. Too many drops, too many balls bounced off of his back leading to interceptions. It's been that kind of year for him and the rest of the Lions. Start at your own risk.
JT: I dont see the Lions offense moving the ball very easily. Granted Hanson has a consistent and talented leg, but he needs to get into position. Therein lies the problem. If the O can't get him into range, then he can't score you points. A risky start.
AD: Hanson is possibly the best start out of any of the players. He doesn't have to depend on Joey being able to get him the ball, he doesn't have to run routes correctly, and he doesn't have to face rookie inconsistencies. All he has to do is kick the ball, which he is very good at. Mile high air nothing. He'll get at least 6 points.
AD: Unless you are a thrill seeker, and want the adrenaline rush of trying to beat your fantasy opponent without your defense gaining any points, you don't want to start this unit. Ashley Lelie = matchup problems for the Lions just about all day.
NOTES from Adrian Donofrio: Keep an eye on Avon Cobourne. He is slated to be the kick returner for the Lions this week. Nothing much is expected of him, but if he does do well, he might be worth a look if your league has RB/TE or RB/WR roster spots. Return yards count in most leagues, and if Avon does well he could be worth a look.