BROWNS QB: Another abysmal performance by Derek Anderson could open up a quarterback controversy in Cleveland again. Brady Quinn mopped up the 30-6 loss to Chicago Sunday, and with a bye in week 9, the Browns might be in a good position to make a move. Regardless of who is behind center, Cleveland is not a good place to look for fantasy gems.
BUCCANEERS QB: Rookie Josh Freeman has officially been named the starter against Green Bay on Sunday. He follows Byron Leftwich and Josh Johnson in the starting lineup for the Bucs, who have been a miserable offensive team so far this season.
CHARGERS WR: Malcom Floyd has earned himself more playing time, and Sunday he was rewarded with a spot in the starting lineup in place of the disappointing Chris Chambers. Floyd had a 53-yarder on the first play from scrimmage, but didn’t do much else. Chambers was waived on Monday, so it looks like Floyd will get another shot this weekend.
CHIEFS RB: The Chiefs suspended Larry Johnson for its upcoming game with Jacksonville, but there could be a silver lining to the whole unpleasant situation. Talented backup Jamaal Charles will finally get a chance to show what he can do with the first team, and considering how bad Johnson has been this year, the Chiefs aren’t risking much by giving Charles a chance. Kolby Smith should see some action as well.
EAGLES RB: LeSean McCoy had 11 carries for 82 yards in his first start in place of Brian Westbrook, who suffered a concussion on October 26. Before getting too excited about his numbers, note that McCoy was held in check for almost the entire game before exploding for a 66-yard score in the fourth quarter. Still, it’s not a bad showing for the rookie, who should get another start while Westbrook recuperates.
49ERS QB: The Alex Smith era began (or “restarted”) with an 18-14 loss to Indianapolis, but Smith had the 49ers ahead of the undefeated Colts for most of the game. He had 198 yards and a touchdown, but he also threw one pick. Shaun Hill appears to have permanently moved into the backup role.
GIANTS WR: A shoulder injury kept Mario Manningham out of the starting lineup Sunday, but it seemed as if he were close to giving it a go and he was scratched at the last minute. Domenik Hixon got the start, but was only targeted once while Hakeem Nicks caught four passes for 53 yards. If Manningham misses another game, expect Nicks, rather than Hixon, to be in the starting lineup.
LIONS WR: The bye week wasn’t enough rest for Calvin Johnson, who missed Sunday’s tilt against the soft St. Louis secondary. Dennis Northcutt started in Megatron’s place, but despite getting five targets, Northcutt was held without a catch. Johnson’s job is obviously very safe, and Northcutt’s bagel is a reminder of how important Johnson is to the Detroit offense.
PANTHERS WR: Dwayne Jarrett replaced Muhsin Muhammad in the starting lineup Sunday, but was targeted just twice. There’s not much left in the tank for Muhammad, so the Panthers have little to lose keeping Jarrett in the lineup while Muhammad recuperates from a knee injury, but the lack of looks toward Jarrett is a bit concerning. Carolina has been successful with a heavy running attack, so Jarrett's chances will be limited even if he remains a starter.
TEXANS RB: Um, did anyone see that coming? Ok, we knew that Steve Slaton had problems holding onto the ball, but wouldn’t it have been nicer if he had gotten benched before the game rather than midway through the first quarter after he lost another fumble? Ryan Moats came in and had a monster game, finishing with 23 carries, 126 yards, and three scores. While Slaton hasn’t officially lost his starting job yet, Moats certainly isn’t going to go quietly. They’ll share the load this week.
TEXANS TE: Owen Daniels has been one of the top tight ends in the league, but a torn ACL Sunday means his season is over. The Texans will turn to Joel Dreessen, who has just five catches this year, rather than James Casey, who will miss at least one game after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery.
TITANS QB: Coach Jeff Fisher was dragged kicking and screaming back into the Vince Young era, but even he can’t argue with the results. Young replaced Kerry Collins in the starting lineup and led the Titans to their first victory of the season. He was an efficient 15-for-18 for 125 yards and a score and he added 30 more yards on the ground. It looks like Tennessee has found their quarterback...again.
Article first appeared 11/3/09