Week 7: Start 'Em

Football > Week 07 > Start 'Em

Week 7: Start 'Em

Though these players aren't considered normal fantasy starting material, they should be started this week. This week's picks include Matt Schaub, Ryan Grant, Chris Johnson, Sammy Morris, and Michael Pittman.

With More Byes and injuries, here are a few guys you might want to consider starting.

Last season was Matt Schaub's first as a starter and he was inconsistent at best, at times dealing with injuries (missing 4 games) and other times with poor play. This season has been up and down again starting with 2 sub par games followed by 2 big games and one missed game due to injury. In his last 2 games Schaub has thrown for 686 yards and 4 touchdowns and looks like he has gotten in sync with his main target Andre Johnson. This week the Texans face the lowly Detroit Lions who are giving up 250 yards per game in the air. Watch for Schaub and the Texans to build on last week's late game comeback victory and put up another solid offensive output vs. the Lions. Keep Schaub active this week.

Going into 2007 almost no one had heard of Ryan Grant. After the season he was the toast of Green Bay and probably helped many fantasy teams go far in the playoffs with his outstanding 2nd half of the season. He was an early round draft pick in most 2008 drafts but after missing all of training camp, he has been absolutely horrendous. He has yet to score a touchdown, has yet to gain over 92 yards in any game and only has 2 catches. Last season he had 5.1 yards per carry and this year has only 3.7 yards per carry. Well, enough about how bad he has been and more about why you should start him this week. While he hasn't put up the fantasy numbers that were expected, he has been getting a steady dose of carries (including a season high 33 last week). This week the Packers play the Colts, who are giving up 161 yards per game on the ground and have been having more trouble in recent weeks. Who knows how Grant will finish up the 2008 season, but this will be the first week he gains over 100 yards and scores a touchdown.

You might have been disappointed by Johnson's last game before the bye, but nonetheless he is a MUST start this week vs. the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chiefs might have the worst defense in the league, and are definitely the worst against the run, giving up a league high 182 yards per game rushing. The Titans should get out to an early lead and look to control the clock by running the ball. Johnson will be fresh coming off the bye week, and he should run all over Kansas City, topping 100 yards and scoring a touchdown. Make sure you have Chris Johnson in your lineup this week.

Many people thought that when Tom Brady went down the Patriots would rely more heavily on its ground. Unfortunately, there have been issues with all the running backs on the team, mostly due to injury. Last week with Laurence Maroney and Lamont Jordan out with injuries, Morris was the feature back and he had 65 total yards, with 4 catches and 1 touchdown. Not great numbers but you have to also take into account the fact that the Patriots were down early and were looking to pass for most of the game. With it looking like Maroney and Jordan might be out again this week, Morris is a must start as he faces the Denver Broncos at home on Monday night. The Broncos have been giving up an average of 393 total yards per game, which means plenty of opportunity for Morris to produce. Follow the Pats' injury report and if the other backs are still out with injury, then Morris is a must start.

At the start of the season Pittman was used on the goal line as well as some 3rd downs. Last week he filled in for starter Selvin Young and carried 20 times for 109 yards as well as 3 catches for 16 yards. Before the injury to Young, Pittman wasn't worth much more than an important handcuff, but now he is worthy of a RB2 or flex start. If he keeps playing the way he did last week it won't matter if Young is injured or not, Pittman will get the carries. The bonus to Pittman starting over Young is that he won't get taken out on the goal line and he is a fantastic receiver out of the backfield, making him an even more dangerous fantasy player. Follow Young's injury status and as long as Pittman is getting the carries make sure to keep him started.