Welcome to the Week 14 edition of the NFL Fantasy Mailbox! As the 2007 season progress, we will select a few emails to answer in our weekly mailbox column. To be considered for future columns, please send your fantasy football questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to include your first name, last initial, city & state.
Q : Hello. With Roy Williams now out for the year, I'm hurting at wide receiver. I have Andre Johnson and Deion Branch and will play both of them, but who do I start as the 3rd receiver?...Dwayne Bowe or Jabar Gaffney? Thanks.
Gretchen C. - Valley Forge, PA
Play the rookie (Bowe) in Kansas City. Bowe is proving he has the skills to be a top NFL wide receiver and has put up some nice numbers through 12 games. Bowe is the first or second passing option for the Chiefs (with TE Tony Gonzalez) and is a much better play than Jabar Gaffney (who is 5th option in New England). The Patriots are by far still the top offense in the NFL, but it's tough to go with a wide receiver who is behind WRs Randy Moss, Donte Stallworth, Wes Welker, and TE Benjamin Watson on the depth chart.
Q : Hey Freak! I'm still in it and start my playoffs this week. Here's my question: Should I start Peyton Manning against Baltimore or Kurt Warner at Seattle? I'm concerned that Baltimore will be able to stop Manning like they stopped Brady. Thanks.
Kennedy W. - Lincoln, NE
Baltimore played well on MNF and should have won the game against the Patriots, but they didn't exactly stop Tom Brady (who ultimately finished with 257 yards and 2 TDs). Sure, Kurt Warner is tempting in a given week...but this week he may be without both stud WRs Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin. Thus, my advice is to go with a more consistent Manning (who had 4 TDs against Jax last week and sits currently at 4th of all quarterbacks statistically in 2007).
Q : Who do you like better for keepers for next year? I can keep only 3 out of these players: Brett Favre, Adrian Peterson (Vikings), D.J. Hackett, Wes Welker, Ronnie Brown, Dallas Clark, Adrian Peterson (Bears), Tony Romo, Dwayne Jarrett, and Selvin Young.
Andy H. - Des Moines, IA
Adrian Peterson (Vikes) is a no-brainer. After that, I believe you go with Romo over Favre. Your third keeper is much more difficult, but I like Adrian Peterson (Bears) over the rest of the group considering injuries, depth chart placements, youth, and positioning.
Q : Scout Fantasy Freak, I need some help this week. With injuries killing my team, I've had to go to the wire for a 3rd wide receiver. Do I opt for Bryant Johnson or Anthony Gonzalez in week 14? Thanks! I love your stuff!
Steve H. - Paducah, KY
Actually, Bryant Johnson is a great play this week with both Fitz and Boldin likely shelved with injuries. Rookie Anthony Gonzalez isn't bad, but Manning has Reggie Wayne and Dallas Clark (among others) as top candidates in the Indy receiving corps...who should catch most of Manning's passes.
Q : I have my starting lineup set for this week, but want to load up my bench in case of a possible tiebreaker scenario. Any thoughts?
Keith W. - Boulder, CO
Although unlikely, ties do happen on occasion and most leagues resort to total bench points for the tiebreaker. I guess you could load up your bench full of starting kickers, D/STs, and maybe an available starting QB or two, but be sure that you don't drop players you may need for next week should you win in week 14. Based upon your question, my guess is that your league has no penalty or fee for quantity of add/drops...
Q : Keeper question for you Freak: Matt Leinart or Kurt Warner?
Kris K. - Lima, OH
Neither is that great of a keeper since both should be available very reasonably next season. If I had to select one now for next year...it would be Leinart. Good luck to you.
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