Week 5 Recap

(CLE at CAR)

Looking Good

1.    Keyshawn Johnson (CAR) - Key now has 3 TDs in the 3 games since Steve Smith returned to the lineup. He is a definite Red Zone target for Jake Delhomme and has benefited from facing single coverage on almost every snap.  He is a great #3 fantasy WR.

2.    DeShaun Foster (CAR) - Foster posted his second straight 100 yard rushing game as he ran hard all day long en route to 106 yards on 24 carries.  His rushing totals have increased in each of the last three weeks and he is starting to stake his claim as the starter.  DeAngelo Williams had only 1 carry in this game after being shaken up on the play.

3.    Kellen Winslow (CLE) - KW led the Browns with 8 catches for 55 yards and is the top option in the team's passing game.  Whenever Charlie Frye is in trouble he goes to Winslow, who is the top pass catching TE in the league right now.  He is a must start every week as long as his knee allows him to be in the lineup.

4.    Carolina D (CAR) - The Panthers finally had a dominating performance, as they held the Browns to 12 points, 0 TDs, and 246 total yards.  The got 2 sacks and forced 3 turnovers, one of which was returned for a TD.  They just missed on at least 5 more sacks and Julius Peppers is having an unbelievable season.  This unit will be fine.

Cause for Concern

1.    DeAngelo Williams (CAR) - The talented rookie had just one carry for 4 yards on the day compared to 24 carries for starter DeShaun Foster.  He appeared to get injured in the game and I will let you know what his prognosis is.

2.    Steve Smith (CAR) - He finished with a decent 6 catches for 62 yards, but Smith dropped 2 sure TDs on the day.  It was very uncharacteristic for him to have those drops and he should have had a monster game.

3.    Browns (CLE) - This team has a horrible offensive line and will struggle against good defensive fronts.  I never got on the Charlie Frye fantasy bandwagon and remain well off of it.  The only Brown that is an every week start is Kellen Winslow.  Braylon is a solid #3 WR and should be started most weeks, but he needs to keep his mouth shut and let his playing do the talking.

 (PIT at SD)

Looking Good

  1. Philip Rivers (SD) - Rivers won the game for the Chargers and showed tremendous poise and skill in dissecting the excellent Steelers' D.  He completed 24 of 37 pass attempts for 247 yards, 2 TDs and 1 INT.  It was a season high in attempts, yards and TDs for Rivers, who showed that he can win games for this team if called upon. He is still not a recommended fantasy play, but keep an eye on him.
  1. Antonio Gates (SD) - The final numbers weren't great, but the Chargers made a concerted effort to get their TE the ball this week.  He finished with 3 catches for 55 yards and TD, as he finally gave those who drafted him early something to write home about.  Look for Gates' production to really pick up and now is a great time to try to acquire him.

Cause for Concern

  1. LaDainian Tomlinson (SD) - LT carried the ball 13 times for only 36 yards, but was very involved in the passing game and totaled 8 receptions. The really troubling part is that Michael Turner continued to be very involved in the offense and carried the ball 11 times for 56 yards.  Late in the game, it was Turner taking most of the carries and he even received 3 straight inside the Steelers' 10 yard line.  They were using both LT and MT in the same backfield at times with LT acting as the pass catcher and MT carrying the ball.  This is an interesting situation that needs to be watched going forward.
  1. Ben Roethlisberger (PIT) - Big Ben is clearly not right, as he now has 0 TD and 7 INTs in 3 games.  He had only 9 TDs in all of 2005!  He is killing the values of Hines Ward (who has not topped 50 yards or scored since Ben took over) and Heath Miller (who has not reached 35 yards with Ben under center).  Roethlisberger should be cut for an Alex Smith, Leinart etc. at this point and it is hard to consider Ward or Miller an every week play.