Prepare Thyself: Week Six
Thomas Jones, New York Jets (vs. Bengals) – I haven’t exactly been Jones’ biggest supporter over the years. I’ve always considered him to be a rather low-ceiling runner. But when boring backs like Jones get the Bengals on the schedule, it could end up being a big day. Cincy ranks next to last in rushing yards allowed and is not much better in rushing touchdowns allowed. Jones will get his 20 carries and is worth a start over ailing players (LaDainian Tomlinson, anyone?) or underperforming ones (Ryan Grant, anyone?).
Edgerrin James, Arizona Cardinals (vs. Cowboys) – Maybe it’s the week for old, boring running backs. James takes on a Dallas defense that will surely be distracted by the potent Cardinal passing game. James has three scores over the last two weeks and he should get at least another this week. Okay, his yardage numbers are pitiful and there’s no reason to expect a sudden jump to more than four yards per carry, but Kurt Warner will propel the offensive unit inside the red zone, which is where James gains his value.
Correll Buckhalter, Philadelphia Eagles (@ 49ers) – With Brian Westbrook suffering two consecutive injuries, it’s time, once again, to roll the dice with Buckhalter. With Westbrook ailing in Weeks Three and Four, Buckhalter totaled more than 170 total yards and two scores. Also, Donovan McNabb will probably put the Eagles on his back, which means whoever the running back is, they probably won’t see 20 carries. Still, a touchdown or two is definitely possible.
Justin Fargas, Oakland Raiders (@ Saints) – With Darren McFadden dinged up, it looks like Fargas will be given the lion’s share of carries for the Raiders. The Saints aren’t really good at stopping anything defensively, so they probably welcome backs to run for “only” 4.5 per carry against them. Since a veritable plethora of backs are on bye this weekend, Fargas makes for a nice second, but preferably flex, fill in.
LaDainian Tomlinson, San Diego Chargers (vs. Patriots) – It truly saddens me to have Tomlinson in this section. Unfortunately, the injury has almost completely neutered his fantasy value. I do think he will come around after the Charger bye week, but that’s down the road. For now, it’s okay to bench Tomlinson if you have a legitimate back-up option.
Roddy White, Atlanta Falcons (vs. Bears) – Alright, I know you’ll all probably start White, but there’s reason to be worried about this one. The Bears have been very good against passing TDs, ranking seventh overall. They do give up yardage, but that’s mainly because they’ve been ahead a lot and have the most pass attempts against in the league. White has been remarkaby good, but has faltered slightly against the better defenses. So, go ahead and start him (I guess), but don’t expect a huge game.
Good luck in Week Six.