Gregg Rosenthal

Goal Line Stand

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Week 4 Rankings Update

Friday, September 26, 2008

These rankings were updated Friday evening.

The Browns offense leads the NFL in one category: excuses. Their schedule has inarguably been brutal. Derek Anderson and Braylon Edwards missed time together in the preseason because of injuries. The offensive line is banged up, and the reserve receivers caught a bad case of Steptoe with Donte Stallworth out of the lineup. The excuses end this week.

The Bengals offer Anderson a last chance to salvage his career in Cleveland or the Brady Quinn era begins, probably for good. But I'm not confident the Browns offense will take full advantage. The tough schedule isn't causing Braylon Edwards to drop passes and short-arm others in weak displays of effort. It isn't forcing Anderson to overthrow open targets. While the matchups have been difficult, this was supposed to be a high-octane offense that could compete with anyone. Instead, they have dinked and dunked to terrible effect. Derek Anderson has a grotesque 4.4 yards-per-attempt average. That's in the Thigpen zone.

The big plays have vanished from Cleveland's offense. The word is out on Anderson, who can wing it deep, but struggles with the underneath stuff. So defenses are selling out to take away the vertical threat; Anderson hasn't completed a single pass this season that traveled more than 20 yards in the air. Risk-taking Anderson owners can use him this week, but he's ranked outside of our top-12 quarterbacks because there is a chance he's replaced at halftime.

Braylon Edwards and Kellen Winslow should bounce back this season, but changing quarterbacks to a first-time starter won't save their value. Jamal Lewis, who doesn't catch many passes and relies on the passing game loosening defenses up, is a shaky RB2. If you are looking for buy-low candidates in the battle of Ohio, I'd take the Bengals.

Week 4 Quarterbacks

RankPlayer NameOpponentNotes
1Tony Romovs. WAS -
2Donovan McNabbat CHIFully expected to start
3Jay Cutlerat KC -
4Drew Breesvs. SF -
5Philip Riversat OAK -
6J.T. O'Sullivanat NO -
7Kurt Warnerat NYJ -
8Carson Palmervs. CLEQuestionable(elbow)
9Aaron Rodgersat TB -
10Trent Edwardsat STL -
11Brett Favrevs. ARZFully expected to start
12David Garrardvs. HOU -
13Jake Delhommevs. ATL -
14Matt Schaubat JACNeeds a good game
15Derek Andersonat CIN
16Brian Griesevs. GB -
17Ben Roethlisbergervs. BALRavens D is on fire
18Jason Campbellat DAL -
19Kerry Collinsvs. MIN -
20Gus Frerotteat TEN -
21Trent Greenvs. BUF -
22Kyle Ortonvs. PHI -
23Damon Huardvs. DEN -
24Matt Ryanat CAR -
25JaMarcus Russellvs. SD -
26Joe Flaccoat PIT -

For the stat projections behind these rankings and custom weekly cheats, check out Football Season Pass

QB Notes: We experimented last week with a game-by-game breakdowns in lieu of notes under the rankings. The reaction was very positive, although many long-time readers wanted the notes here as well. Because of some scheduling issues, I'm handling the Daily Dose tomorrow and will put game previews there, with my notes from watching games during the week. Some abbreviated rankings notes are below.

J.T. O'Sullivan is a solid QB1 against a weak New Orleans defense. His 9.4 YPA indicates that his fantasy numbers have room to improve. … Drew Brees may be without his top three receivers if David Patten is out, but Sean Payton always finds a way. Don't bench him. … The Bucs and Bears are usually great against the pass, but that hasn't been the case this season. Don't downgrade McNabb or Aaron Rodgers based on their matchups. I also wouldn't downgrade McNabb based on his injury. … There's no reason to think Trent Green will do any better than Marc Bulger at the helm of the Rams offense. … Trent Edwards' yardage has been consistent. This week, he should get the scores. … Brian Griese's high pass attempts are helping to cover up the fact he's not playing very well. That will eventually catch up to him. … Let's be patient with Matt Schaub and David Garrard for one more week before burying them.

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Gregg Rosenthal has directed Rotoworld's football content since 2003. He co-hosts the NBC Fantasy Fix and covers the NFL for and Catch him on Twitter.
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