Glenn Graham's Fantasy Football Picks

October 05, 2006

PLAY OF THE WEEK

Steve Smith, Carolina vs. Cleveland -- With 17 catches for 199 yards and a touchdown in two games since his return from a thigh injury, Smith has revitalized the Panthers (2-2) after their 0-2 start. It won't be long before you see his name at the top of the receiving leaders, and a monster game at home against the Browns will help.

POSITION ANALYSIS

QUARTERBACK

STARTING NOD -- Marc Bulger, St. Louis at Green Bay. After going 26-for-42 for 328 yards and three touchdowns against Detroit, Bulger now gets to feast on a porous Green Bay secondary that ranks 31st and continually gives up the big play.

OTHER SOLID OPTIONS -- Donovan McNabb, Philadelphia vs. Dallas; Byron Leftwich, Jacksonville vs. New York Jets; Jake Delhomme, Carolina vs. Cleveland.

TAKE A SEAT -- Daunte Culpepper, Miami at New England; Jake Plummer, Denver vs. Ravens; Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh at San Diego.

RUNNING BACK

STARTING NOD -- Larry Johnson, Kansas City at Arizona. In last week's 41-0 win over San Francisco, the stud running back finally had an effort fantasy owners anticipated, rushing for 101 yards, catching four passes for 41 more yards and scoring his first two touchdowns of the season. Look for the Chiefs to lean on him again against another weak NFC West defense at Arizona.

OTHER SOLID OPTIONS -- Clinton Portis, Washington at New York Giants; Frank Gore, San Francisco vs. Oakland; Thomas Jones, Chicago vs. Buffalo.

TAKE A SEAT -- Willis McGahee, Buffalo at Chicago; Tatum Bell, Denver vs. Ravens; Kevan Barlow, New York Jets at Jacksonville.

WIDE RECEIVER

STARTING NOD -- Terry Glenn, Dallas at Philadelphia. With all the attention in the City of Brotherly Love focused on Terrell Owens, Glenn (15 catches for 229 yards and three touchdowns in three games) has another highly productive afternoon Sunday with a high-scoring game likely.

OTHER SOLID OPTIONS -- Marvin Harrison, Indianapolis vs. Tennessee; Roy Williams, Detroit at Minnesota; Reggie Williams, Jacksonville vs. New York Jets.

TAKE A SEAT -- Hines Ward, Pittsburgh at San Diego; Javon Walker, Denver vs. Ravens; Joey Galloway, Tampa Bay at New Orleans.

TIGHT END

STARTING NOD -- Tony Gonzalez, Kansas City at Arizona. The strong showing by backup quarterback Damon Huard last week against San Francisco leaves no concerns about the Chiefs' offense, and Gonzalez (17 catches, 147 yards, one touchdown) should see plenty of balls come his way against a soft Arizona defense.

OTHER SOLID OPTIONS -- Dallas Clark, Indianapolis vs. Tennessee; Jason Witten, Dallas at Philadelphia; Antonio Gates, San Diego vs. Pittsburgh.

TAKE A SEAT -- Ben Troupe, Tennessee at Indianapolis; Heath Miller, Pittsburgh at San Diego; Randy McMichael, Miami at New England.

KICKER

STARTING NOD -- Robbie Gould, Chicago vs. Buffalo: We know all about the Bears' defense, and with the offense emerging, Gould is getting plenty of opportunities. For the season, he has converted all 13 field-goal tries and is 11-for-11 on extra points.

DEFENSE/SPECIAL TEAMS

STARTING NOD -- Indianapolis vs. Tennessee. The numbers add up to a long day for the Titans and rookie quarterback Vince Young: The Colts' defense has nine take-aways (four interceptions, five fumbles) and eight sacks, while the Titans offense has yielded 11 turnovers.

Last week's tab

Play of the week -- Peyton Manning, Indianapolis: 21-for-30, 217 yards, one TD; one rushing TD.

Quarterback -- Carson Palmer, Cincinnati: 20-for-35, 245 yards.

Running back -- Brian Westbrook, Philadelphia: DNP.

Wide receiver -- Torry Holt, St. Louis: six catches, 102 yards, one TD.

Tight end -- Jason Witten, Dallas: two catches, 19 yards.

Kicker -- Jeff Wilkins, St. Louis: four FGs, three PATs.

Defense -- Philadelphia: one fumble, two interceptions.

glenn.graham@baltsun.com

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