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Weekly Matchups: Strong Plays, Weak Plays Week 6

Kyle Fisher

Kyle Fisher writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire.


Josh Freeman vs. NO

Freeman has had major struggles this season after a breakout 2010 campaign. He has already matched his 2010 interception total in the first five weeks and has just three touchdown passes. If Freeman is to turn his season around, this looks to be the week to get it started. The Saints have given up the seventh most fantasy points to the quarterback position while allowing the third most touchdown passes in the league (10). Freeman was solid last season, averaging 237 passing while throwing three touchdowns and no interceptions against the Saints. Look for Freeman's best effort of the young season in this matchup.

James Starks vs. STL

While the Packers are far from a high volume rushing team, Starks averages 4.4 yards per carry and has rushed for as many yards as Chris Johnson this season. With six teams on byes this week, Starks has one of the more favorable matchups for running backs against the Rams. The Rams have allowed the third most fantasy points to running backs and give up 5.5 yards per rush. The Packers have the ability to take a big lead, and Starks could have the opportunity to get enough carries to have a solid fantasy outing and be a nice flex option in Week 6.

Daniel Thomas vs. NYJ

Thomas (ankle) practiced this week and looks to be a go for Monday night's game with the Jets. Thomas has been outstanding in his two starts, averaging more than 100 yards a game on nearly five yards a carry. Thomas has the type of matchup that should produce similar numbers against the Jets. The 2011 Jets do not resemble the recent Jets run defenses. The Jets have allowed the most rushing touchdowns (7) and given up the fifth most fantasy points to running backs. Look for Thomas to be a nice addition to the lineup this week as the Dolphins keep the ball on the ground.

Santonio Holmes vs. MIA

The Jets passing game has been the source of ridicule recently as quarterback Mark Sanchez ranks just 20th in passing yards, despite having a poor running game, and hasn't broken 200 yards in the last two weeks. Holmes himself has been extremely limited, going for just 119 yards in the past three weeks. Holmes has the matchup to break out this week against a Dolphins pass defense that has given up the eighth most touchdowns to wide receivers (6) despite playing only four games and has given up the sixth most fantasy points to the wide receiver position. If Holmes is to get back in the good graces of his fantasy owners, this looks like the week to do it.


The Vikings have quietly put together one of the better fantasy defenses this season. After last season's disaster, the Vikings rank ninth in points allowed while ranking second in total sacks (16). The Bears offensive line woes are well documented as no quarterback has taken more hits than Jay Cutler in the last two seasons. The Bears have allowed the third most sacks (18) and rank just 18th in points scored. Look for a solid effort from the Vikings defense, and don't be surprised if it is one of the better defensive units this week.


Matt Schaub vs. BAL

Schaub is coming one of his best fantasy performance of the season, throwing for more than 400 yards and two touchdowns in a loss to the Raiders last week. This week Schaub could put up a performance that is likely to frustrate his owners as he takes on the Ravens. The Ravens are well rested after the bye and enter this contest giving up the fewest points per game to fantasy quarterbacks. In their last two games, they have held teams to just 285 total yards and have allowed just three touchdown throws all season. Schaub is good enough to be decent against any defense, but it might not be enough to make him a viable starter this week.

Jahvid Best vs. SF

The 5-0 Lions might be the best story of the early NFL season, and Best has certainly been a big contributor. He averages nearly five yards a carry and has caught 21 passes. This week, Best faces his toughest test against the league's top run defense in the 49ers. The 49ers have allowed by far the fewest fantasy points to running backs this season. Best may be too good and versatile to completely shut down, but this could look very similar to his performance two weeks ago against the Cowboys.

BenJarvus Green-Ellis vs. DAL

The "Law Firm" is coming off his best two games of the season and has been a viable option on the ground for the pass-happy Patriots. Green-Ellis has 211 rushing yards and three touchdowns in wins over the Raiders and Jets. This week Green-Ellis has a very difficult matchup against a Cowboys run defense that allows the fewest yards per carry in the league and the third fewest fantasy points. While the Patriots will move the ball and score, Green-Ellis figures to take a back seat in this contest.

Reggie Wayne vs. CIN

Wayne has been one of the best fantasy receivers of the last decade but has struggled all season with Peyton Manning out. Since Week 1, Wayne has not been in the endzone and has not gained more than 77 yards receiving. Wayne had tough matchups against the Steelers and Browns and faces another one this week in Cincinnati. The Bengals are tied with the Browns in allowing the second fewest fantasy points to wide receivers and have given up the third fewest catches. While Curtis Painter has been better than most expected, it has been Pierre Garcon and not Wayne who has benefited.

Dallas DEF vs. NE

The Cowboys might have the best run defense in the NFL, but the Patriots still make their living through the air, as they rank first in passing yards, first in total offense and second in points scored. The Patriots have a streak of 13 straight regular season games of scoring at least 30 points. Tom Brady has been sacked just eight times and had just one bad game against the Bills where he still threw four touchdowns. The Cowboys are a viable defense most weeks, but the Patriots have just been too good to risk it.