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Thursday, September 20, 2012
Fantasy Fix: The Andre Brown edition

By Dan Graziano

We all spend way more time than we should on fantasy football every day anyway, right? Why not make a post out of it? Here's our look at where the NFC East's players sit on our fantasy experts' Week 3 rankings. (Click on the position headers to see the full rankings.)

QUARTERBACKS

T5. Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins vs. Bengals

7. Eli Manning, New York Giants at Carolina (Thurs.)

8. Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys vs. Buccaneers

9. Michael Vick, Philadelphia Eagles at Arizona

Griffin is tied with Tom Brady and behind only Drew Brees, Cam Newton, Aaron Rodgers and Matthew Stafford in this week's rankings. Heady company. Those rushing yards really can take a guy from great to elite in fantasy. Of course, three of the rankers put Manning ahead of Griffin, so it's a close call. I'd feel fantastic about any of the first three this week. Vick is turning it over too much, and a game against Arizona's tough defense isn't what the doctor ordered.

RUNNING BACKS

Andre Brown
Andre Brown, subbing in for an injured Ahmad Bradshaw, collected 71 rushing yards and a touchdown against the Bucs.
4. LeSean McCoy, Eagles at Arizona

6. DeMarco Murray, Cowboys vs. Buccaneers

19. Alfred Morris, Redskins vs. Bengals

25. Andre Brown, Giants at Carolina (Thurs)

40. David Wilson, Giants at Carolina (Thurs)

What to do with Brown, and with only a few hours to figure it out? The macthup's great, the player's completely unproven and the Giants' offensive line is one of the worst run-blocking lines in the whole league. Obviously, if you had Ahmad Bradshaw and you picked up Brown as a handcuff, you start him. But how much confidence can you have? It could work out great, or you could go into Sunday with a big, fat 0 in your RB2 or flex spot. And that's no fun, sitting on that all weekend. I believe he'll get the ball more than Wilson will, but I don't know for sure. Do you?

WIDE RECEIVERS

T2. Victor Cruz, Giants at Carolina (Thurs)

10. Miles Austin, Cowboys vs. Buccaneers

13. Dez Bryant, Cowboys vs. Buccaneers

24. DeSean Jackson, Eagles at Arizona

25. Pierre Garcon, Redskins vs. Bengals

T46. Rueben Randle, Giants at Carolina (Thurs.

50. Kevin Ogletree, Cowboys vs. Buccaneers

Even with Hakeem Nicks out, I wouldn't touch Randle or Ramses Barden because again, how can you know? I will say this, though: If he can get open, I honestly think Cruz could catch 20 balls tonight. We have no proof that Manning trusts anyone else on the field, and he trusts Cruz completely. Interested to see how Carolina covers him. I'd also start any Cowboys wide receiver. Did you see what the Giants did to that Bucs' secondary last week? Forget Bryant's miserable game in Seattle and just start him. Trade him next week after his huge game if you really don't want him around. Heck, I'll take him... Garcon will obviously fall off the list if he can't play due to his foot injury, and Jeremy Maclin will probably pop up to around Jackson's spot if he can play in spite of his hip injury. Both of those players were listed as "limited" in practice Thursday. My guess is Garcon sits out another week and Maclin plays hurt again. I'd look for other options on both.

TIGHT ENDS

8. Jason Witten, Cowboys vs.  Buccaneers

9. Brent Celek, Eagles at Arizona

10. Martellus Bennett,  Giants at Carolina (Thurs)

22. Fred Davis, Redskins vs. Bengals

I'd move both Celek and Bennett ahead of Witten, who just hasn't shown anything. Especially considering what Romo's likely to find open deep, it's hard to see Witten busting out with a big statistical game this week. And if Maclin's still banged up or can't play, there's no reason to believe Vick won't just keep finding Celek again. Bennett could be the No. 2 target for Manning in the passing game tonight (not that he's a sure bet to catch any of them). And Davis, I'm staying away. He just doesn't appear to be part of the offense right now.

KICKERS

11. Billy Cundiff, Redskins vs. Bengals

12. Dan Bailey, Cowboys vs. Buccaneers

13. Alex Henery, Eagles at Arizona

I mean, they're kickers.

TEAM DEFENSES

5. Eagles at Arizona

13. Cowboys vs. Buccaneers

17. Redskins vs. Bengals

19. Giants at Carolina (Thurs)

About right. Eagles are a must-start fantasy defense every week, and the only one I'd feel comfortable starting in fantasy this week. (Except in these two-defense leagues you guys roped me into, where I started the Redskins last week and got a defensive touchdown. In those, I could see starting Dallas or Washington this week. Not the Giants agains Cam Newton. Sorry.)