Glenn Graham's fantasy football picks

October 27, 2005|By GLENN GRAHAM

Play of the week

Antonio Gates, San Diego vs. Kansas City -- Last season, much of the talk about this game centered around who the best tight end in the league was - Gates or the Chiefs' Tony Gonzalez. This season, there's no question. In six games, Gates has 33 catches for 430 yards and three TDs. At home against a Chiefs defense that ranks 30th against the pass, Gates should be in for a busy Sunday. In the one game he played against the Chiefs last season, he had seven catches for 92 yards and two scores.

Position analysis

Quarterback

Starting nod -- Carson Palmer, Cincinnati vs. Green Bay. Expect the Bengals to respond from last week's home loss to Pittsburgh with a big offensive performance against the struggling Packers. Palmer, who has thrown for 1,800 yards and 13 TDs, will spread the ball around, and the defense should give him good field position throughout the game.

Other solid options -- Trent Green, Kansas City at San Diego; Kerry Collins, Oakland at Tennessee; Jake Plummer, Denver vs. Philadelphia.

Take a seat -- Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh vs. Ravens; Jeff Garcia, Detroit vs. Chicago; Josh McCown, Arizona at Dallas.

Running back

Starting nod -- Corey Dillon, New England vs. Buffalo. With last week off, Dillon will have his batteries recharged, and the Patriots will likely look to him first against a Bills defense that has struggled to stop the run all season. In two games against the AFC East rival last season, Dillon combined to run for 230 yards with one score.

Other solid options -- Thomas Jones, Chicago at Detroit; Reuben Droughns, Cleveland at Houston; Stephen Davis, Carolina vs. Minnesota.

Take a seat -- Willis McGahee, Buffalo at New England; Kevin Jones, Detroit vs. Chicago.

Wide receiver

Starting nod -- Terry Glenn, Dallas vs. Arizona. The Cowboys' veteran has a chance to show the young guns on the other side - Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin - how it's done. The Cowboys should rebound big after the late loss at Seattle with Drew Bledsoe finding Glenn instead of defenders. On the season, Glenn has 33 catches with three TDs.

Other solid options -- T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Cincinnati vs. Green Bay; Steve Smith, Carolina vs. Minnesota; Jimmy Smith, Jacksonville at St. Louis.

Take a seat -- Ashley Lelie, Denver vs. Philadelphia; Donald Driver, Green Bay at Cincinnati; Chris Chambers, Miami vs. New Orleans at Baton Rouge, La.

Tight end

Starting nod -- Heath Miller, Pittsburgh vs. Ravens. The rookie has become a viable option in the red zone with opposing defenses geared on stopping the Steelers' imposing running game. Miller has a TD in each of the past three games and now has 16 catches for 182 yards and four TDs.

Other solid options -- Jason Witten, Dallas vs. Arizona; Randy McMichael, Miami vs. New Orleans at Baton Rouge, La.; L.J. Smith, Philadelphia at Denver.

Take a seat -- Jermaine Wiggins, Minnesota at Carolina; Marcus Pollard, Detroit vs. Chicago; Chris Cooley, Washington at New York Giants.

Kicker

Starting nod -- Jay Feely, New York Giants vs. Washington. Feely has been a steady producer with a perfect resume - 11-for-11 on field goals and 20-for-20 on extra points. He's kicked at least one field goal in the past five games and has nailed 50-yarders in the past two. The Giants' efficient offense has been a big surprise, but field goals should win out over touchdowns against a tough Redskins defense.

Defense

Starting nod -- Carolina vs. Minnesota. The Vikings' home win against Green Bay on Sunday was an aberration, and the Panthers - fresh off a bye week - will drive home the point this weekend. Only Houston quarterback David Carr has been sacked more than Vikings quarterback Daunte Culpepper, who has been dropped 29 times in six games.

Last week's tab

Play of the Week: Steven Jackson, St. Louis - 116 total yards, 2 TDs QB: Mark Brunell, Washington - 13-20-0-252, 3 TDs RB: LaMont Jordan, Oakland - 162 total yards, 3 TDs WR: Anquan Boldin, Arizona - 15 total yards TE: Randy McMichael, Miami - 29 total yards K: Shayne Graham, Cincinnati - 2 FGs, 1 PAT for 7 points Def.: Washington - 1 fumble rec., 1 interception, 3 sacks glenn.graham@baltsun.com

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