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Week 4 fantasy: Start Vitale, Robertson

9/15/2011

As part of our weekly football coverage, I offer up my hypothetical fantasy football picks every Thursday. Note: This league is completely made up. If you are in a high school fantasy football league, please seek professional help.

START 'EM

RB — Dan Vitale, Wheaton South

Wheaton South has struggled to move the ball through the air this season, and the result has been a lot of carries for senior running back Dan Vitale. This was especially true last week, when he went over 100 yards for the first time on the season. On the road this week against Naperville North, I expect the Tigers to keep the ball on the ground and try to spring Vitale for some big plays. And even when they do throw it, Vitale is often the top target out of the backfield.

Projection: 21 carries, 130 yards, 2 TDs

WR — J.J. Robertson, Lincoln-Way East

Robertson was a trendy pick before the season, as the Illinois-bound senior possesses the top-end speed to be a serious deep threat. But a slow start was followed by a two-game suspension (imposed by the team), and it looked like 2011 might not be Robertson's dream season. He returned last week, however, and made a big impact, catching five passes for 103 yards and a pair of touchdowns. With a huge matchup against Homewood-Flossmoor tomorrow, that's the game-changing Robertson I expect to show up. And with Homewood-Flossmoor averaging 55 points per game so far, Lincoln-Way East will have to score a lot of points to keep up. That means a lot of targets for Roberston.

Projection: 9 catches, 143 yards, 1 TD

QB — Anthony Maddie, Aurora Christian

In its three games this season, Aurora Christian has scored (in order) 38, 48 and 54 points. I want whoever is quarterbacking that team, because it means he's probably putting up huge numbers. And that's what Maddie is doing this season. Last week, he threw for 326 yards and five touchdowns, and he also contributed on special teams by running back a punt for a TD. Against Guerin Prep, I expect Maddie to put up similarly crazy numbers.

Projection: 14 of 18, 290 yards, 4 TDs

BENCH CITY

RB — Martez Walker, Brother Rice

The idea of benching Walker may sound crazy, as he's been one of the most productive runners in the state this season. But St. Rita's defense is tough enough to slow him down. I can envision a scenario where Rita focuses so much on stopping Walker that No. 2 back Andrew Walker (no relation) ends up having a bigger impact. If this move backfires, feel free to blame me.

Projection: 16 carries, 62 yards, 0 TDs

* Projections based on 1 QB, 2 RB, 2 WR format; No PPR

Want to join my (nonexistent) Illinois high school fantasy league? Find me on Twitter (@ESPNHSGrimala).