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October 22, 11:34 AM ET
Fantasy Sports w/Eric Karabell

Eric Karabell
  (3:01 PM)

Hey there and welcome to another fantasy sports chat session. Seven weeks down in the NFL season and we can also discuss fantasy hoops if you would like. So, let's go!

Brent (Los Angeles)

EK loved you on the fantasy focus pod cast today. Though I wish Pod Vador would stop pushing all those annoying sound bites. I am looking forward to the fantasy playoffs. Would you rather have Bush or the Graham/Dunn combo?

Eric Karabell
  (3:03 PM)

Yeah, those sound bites can get annoying. Thanks for listening. I think Bush should be fine for the fantasy playoffs. Any knee injury can be serious, but I think Bush will be ready to go in four weeks, in time for our playoffs.

Mike (DC)

Better pick up for the rest of the season; Avery or Camarillo?

Eric Karabell
  (3:04 PM)

Both are interesting, but it seems to me Miami's Camarillo has more staying power. He's been Pennington's main option all season, and while he's not scoring much, he's more consistent. Who knows what the Rams will do from week to week?

Todd (HB)

Thomas Jones and McGahee are looking good for this i really start them both over Turner?

Eric Karabell
  (3:05 PM)

They both looked good on our projections, but I think the Philly defense can be run on, so Turner will do OK as well. Tough call. I'd probably sit Jones of these three, but his matchup is soooo appealing.

Shawn ( Sacramento )

Eric always enjoy your work, your probably the only one whos rankings I actually follow. So a frustrated owner dropped Torry Holt do you think hes worth picking up over keeping Fred Jackson. I have Lynch, Slaton, Turner, Deuce, Torain.

Eric Karabell
  (3:06 PM)

Yeah, I don't think we'll see Holt approach 90 receptions again, but he's worth owning. You've got three definite starters at RB most weeks, and McAllister as well. You can afford to move Fred Jackson.

Erik (Philly)

You should only answer questions from Philly today! Who would you rather have for the remainder of the season: B Jacobs or Addai? BTW have you seen the sports nation map? No love!!

Eric Karabell
  (3:07 PM)

No questions from Tampa today! OK, I'd rather have Jacobs. Definitely. Even when Addai comes back, he's sharing carries.

Bobby (SD)

Eric, a big fan of your professionalism and expertise. Do you think Chambers plays this week? If not, I need to make some quick adjustments.

Eric Karabell
  (3:08 PM)

Thanks, Bobby. I'd prepare for someone else, because I find it hard to believe an injured player is going to fly to London and play. Chambers didn't sound all that close to performing in Week 7.

Scott (South Carolina)

Hey Eric, Please answer this, no one seems to have answer. What is the deal and expected return of Torain. Is Denver really in love with this guy that he is such a big deal when he comes back.

Eric Karabell
  (3:10 PM)

I think this situation is so overrated. Sure, anyone in the Denver rotation can be interesting because we know Mike Shanahan just doesn't follow conventional wisdom. He'll use someone one week, then switch the next. So anyone in that uniform is a threat. Torain has talent. I think Pittman is the guy for now, and when Torain and Selvin Young get healthy, Pittman will be on a short leash. But this ALL presumes that Denver is such a great running team, annually providing great fantasy options. It's not. It used to be. Torain shouldn't be viewed different than anyone else recovering, except Shanahan is a bit out there.

Bob (Madison, WI)

Let the Sammy Morris talk begin! Do I start him over Turner or Barber based on the delicious match up?

Eric Karabell
  (3:11 PM)

No, no, no. It's a nice matchup, but let's remember Sammy missed the entire second half Monday. I'm all for nice matchups, but I don't sit someone like Barber because of it. Or Turner.

Chad (Phoenix)

Eric, does singeltary help Gore more now. I'm sick of Matz forgetting about him and was glad Nolan got fired. Someone needs to reign Martz in the 4th qrtr.

Eric Karabell
  (3:12 PM)

Has nothing to do with Mike Martz or Nolan. Gore had a bad game because the Giants shut him down. We've ranked him No. 3 among all RBs for this week in a better matchup.

Haden (Memphis)

I realize that trades depend on what kind of league you are in, and what kind of deal you can pull, but wanted to know what your opinion was on what type of WR or TE I should be able to get for Warrick Dunn. Thanks.

Eric Karabell
  (3:14 PM)

I can't believe you'll be able to get much. Dunn is not young, not getting all the carries and not scoring. There's no way to get proper value, assuming there was big value. I just don't buy it. Enjoy the 8 points per week and move on.

Jeff ( Pittsburgh, PA)

I realize this will be a football-heavy chat, but how bout some hoops talk? I am looking for some general strategy for rotisserie leagues, especially the first 3-4 rounds.

Eric Karabell
  (3:16 PM)

I'll take hoops questions, absolutely! Let's get some more in here! I look for healthy, durable, well-rounded players early in a draft, and I generally take the best available as opposed to worrying about filling a center spot. I don't reach on players, though if it's between Pau Gasol and David West, I would probably take the C-eligible. Build a balanced team and don't assume you can leave without any point guards and just "fix" it.

Skip (Fennville)

Hey Eric, can you do me a solid and rank Philly's WR's for the rest of the year. (Curtis, Jackson, and Brown)

Eric Karabell
  (3:17 PM)

Kind of impossible to know what they will do, but I'd say Curtis, Brown and then Jackson in that order. I'm impressed by the rookie, but skeptical he continues to get as much playing time, especially since he's so critical on returns.

Dave, MD

Who has more fantasy value for week 8? Warrick Dunn or Pierre Thomas? And for the rest of the season? Thanks EK!

Eric Karabell
  (3:18 PM)

I still think it's Dunn, assuming he plays. Thomas is a lot like McAllister, so to assume he gets more carries is risky. He's another goal line back. The Saints need a sprinter like Bush, but don't have one. At least Dunn gets yards.

Mike (Madison)

I've got the opportunity to move Ryan Torian in a deal that swings me Jay Cutler? Is this guy going to be the real deal or do I move him before he becomes a bust?

Eric Karabell
  (3:19 PM)

You're kidding, right? Look, Torain might be something special, but I'm very skeptical. The Broncos have been getting good production from Pittman. And they throw so much. If you can get Cutler on the cheap, do it. A lot of things need to fall right for Torain to have big value.

J.B. (Dunmore, PA)

Mr. Karabell: I've got two wounded warriors and need to pick one for Sunday. Do I go with Westbrook or Willie Parker on Sunday?

Eric Karabell
  (3:19 PM)

Westbrook seems safer to me. I think both will play, though.

Sammy (Joliet, IL)

Do I start LenDale White or Larry Johnson this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:20 PM)

One of them will likely be inactive, so sit that one. Sit LJ. And people, do not trade for Johnson. Chances are he'll be missing quite a few more games, if not all of them. The Chiefs do not want him around the team.

Josh (Los Angeles)

After reading the "grand theft roto" column I am actually entertaining the thought of trying to move Barber before the playoffs for a "friendlier schedule" RB. Is that move really going to create significant distance between the competition?

Eric Karabell
  (3:21 PM)

I think there's value in that, but I wouldn't move Barber for Warrick Dunn, either. And it's not like Dallas won't have something to play for all of December, including that final weekend in Philly. What a great Sunday night game that will be!

Andy (Indy)

Yeaaaaaaa BBall question: How awesome is Greg Oden going to be this season?

Eric Karabell
  (3:23 PM)

If he say he's one of the more overrated players would you get mad? Look, tons of ability, but low minutes his rookie season, low shots, and who knows how healthy he will be? No chance I'd take him in the top 50, but a lot of people are.

Justin, (Tampa Bay ,c'mon man)

Hey Eric, trade question: In a vacuum, Steve Smith (Car) and McFadden for LT. Which side would you want?

Eric Karabell
  (3:24 PM)

The non-LT side. The guy isn't a top 5 RB to me, not with this injury. McFadden isn't either, but I see all these crazy trade offers for LT as if he was going to start scoring 3 TDs per week. He's not.

Ryan (Rochester)

I just made a deal for LenDale White by trading away Ward. My other RB is Portis, and I have Welker, Coles, and Bryant. PPR League. Did I shoot myself in the foot?

Eric Karabell
  (3:25 PM)

I don't know why people are so scared of LenDale White. He's solid. Doesn't always pile on the yards, but he does score TDs. Not a pass catcher, but it seems you might need RB help. Assuming that is Hines and not Derrick Ward, I have no problem with that trade.

Markakis (BMore)

Do you think Roddy White can keep it up? Aren't teams going to start focus even more on defending him?

Eric Karabell
  (3:26 PM)

No, not a bit. White is too good, and Matt Ryan is capable enough that I think Roddy remains a top 15 WR all season. The Falcons' opponents have to stop Burner Turner as well, and Ryan has shown he's not Tarvaris Jackson. He's pretty good now.

Sean, Brooklyn

Eric - what are your projections for Rudy Gay this year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:28 PM)

Seems like he should be scoring 21 or 22 points, maybe 7 boards and 4.5 assists. Don't worry about him missing the preseason, he's a pretty safe third round pick.

Aaron (Elkhart, IN)

Pick a side: Marion Barber for Adrian Peterson. Thanks.

Eric Karabell
  (3:28 PM)

If I start a draft today, I go Peterson first, then Portis and then Barber third.


Who would you rather take a chance on, TJ Duckett or Cedric Benson?

Eric Karabell
  (3:28 PM)

Probably Benson, sad as that is, because he will get carries. Duckett does not.

Tony (St. Paul, MN)

Who do you think holds more value for the rest of the year in a PPR league, M. Moore or Sammy Morris?

Eric Karabell
  (3:29 PM)

I expect Willie Parker to play this week, and Laurence Maroney is absolutely done, so it has to be Sammy over Mewelde.

Mike (Denver)

I've been offered Colston for McAllister and Chambers but am scared of Colston snapping back. What do you think?

Eric Karabell
  (3:30 PM)

Seems like a good way to get Colston. McAllister is a weekly flex, and Chambers a No. 3 WR, but Colston could be terrific. Can't like his Week 7 doughnut, but all indications are he'll be OK.

Ryan (PA)

I have a dynasty league baseball question. Would you deal Sabathia and Gordon for Arod? I can keep 5 SP's and would still have Lincecum, Verlander, Kershaw, Parra and Hughes. It would give me Tex, Howard(DH), Hanley, Kendrick and then Arod as my IF.

Eric Karabell
  (3:31 PM)

Yes, I would absolutely make that deal. A-Rod is a stud, probably the No. 2 pick in 2009 (after Pujols) and should be good at least another five seasons. I haven't given up on Gordon, but I don't expect a 30-hr season anytime soon. Get the best player in any keeper/dynasty format.

Jeff, Huntington WV

Is chris Johnson for Calvin Johnson a fair deal....I also have LT and Westbrook, but LT worries me and I don't have much else...But I need an upgrade over Bruce at #3 WR

Eric Karabell
  (3:32 PM)

Seems relatively fair, in a vaccuum. Each has very nice value, and it's a need trade. You have two RBs who just aren't safe.

scott (fresno)

True or false: From week 8 forward, Westbrook will be a top 5 back

Eric Karabell
  (3:33 PM)

I don't see how anyone can say true on this one. Maybe next week, but not before he plays.


So was it a bad idea for me to trade Steve Slaton and Thomas Jones for LT? I have portis and Ronnie Brown as my other RBs.

Eric Karabell
  (3:35 PM)

Well, it is possible LT all of a sudden gets healthy and supplies 20 points per week. I'm just not a big Jones fan right now. After he goes off on the Chiefs this week, I would sell. And it's no secret Slaton has started sharing carries more with Ahman Green.

John (WI)

Rest of the year: Scheffler or Winslow?

Eric Karabell
  (3:36 PM)

Good one! I will still say it's Winslow. He comes back in Week 9 and starts to put up decent numbers. I don't think he's done yet, and he has a lot to prove.

tom (Hackensack)

Eric, do You think LJ is droppable? who would you drop out of mewelde (dont have FWP), Derrick Ward (i have jacobs) or LJ?

Eric Karabell
  (3:38 PM)

I think it's too early to outright cut Larry Johnson, but it won't surprise me if the Chiefs shut him down at some point. For now, it's Ward, but in reality, in a week he might have the most value. Wouldn't shock me if Parker takes all the Pittsburgh carries this week. Tough call, You have to drop one of them now? Just wait for more info.

Joe (philly)

is steve heiden the sleeper TE of the week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:38 PM)

I ranked him around the spot I had Winslow, like 10th. I wouldn't say great sleeper, because he still has to rely on struggling Derek Anderson, but worth a start in many leagues.


You say we can't make a judgement on Westbrook before he plays this Sunday?!?! That is silly and just not practical for fantasy football!!! The name of the game is to buy low, so we need to make a call NOW...before he blows up Sunday.

Eric Karabell
  (3:39 PM)

I think Westbrook will be handled carefully, maybe 15 touches, maybe a score so it will look like a good week. My point, which you missed, is that he's not a top-5 RB the rest of the way, not yet.

Ankur (Roanoke Rapids, NC)

If the weather is bad in London, would you start Schaub over Brees? Thank you.

Eric Karabell
  (3:39 PM)

Probably not. I think I had Brees No. 1 at QB this week, even in a snowstorm.

Brandon (Holland)

You said you see FWP playing this week, if Parker does start, who would be the better flex play, Moore or McClain?

Eric Karabell
  (3:41 PM)

Time for everyone to get off the Le'Ron McClain bandwagon, because his touches are barely existent. Sad. He was playing well. So Mewelde is the call.

Max (Houston)

Which side gets teh Karabell seal of approval? Adrian Peterson or Chris Johnson/Santonio Holmes?

Eric Karabell
  (3:42 PM)

Peterson. Easily. Still the best player in fantasy, even though he's currently sixth in RB scoring. He'll end up top 3.


Thanks for the answer Eric, but you are missing my point that right now is the only opportunity to buy Westbrook at a reasonable price. These are the moves that win championships..sure its risky, but so is playing it safe. So my question is, would you personally take the gamble and get him for the rest of the year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:44 PM)

I would take the gamble only if I wasn't trading away something a lot safer, and obvious. Like, would I deal Slaton for Westbrook? Absolutely. Agree that if Westbrook goes off this week, you can no longer get him cheap. I'm just saying I don't expect him to go off and remain healthy the rest of the season.

Alex (Michigan) like Jacobs more than Addai b/c he'll be splitting carries? Doesn't Jacobs split with Ward?

Eric Karabell
  (3:44 PM)

No, not really. Not the conventional way. Jacobs gets 90 percent of the first half carries, then the Giants go to a different pace in the second half, and split them. Addai might actually split evenly with Rhodes, which is not good.

Jake (OH)

What the latest on Kobe's injury? I have an offer of Wade for Kobe on the table, should I take it? Thanks.

Eric Karabell
  (3:45 PM)

I wouldn't, but then again I'm the only staff ranker who didn't place Wade at No. 5 overall. Kobe will be fine. He'll miss a week, maybe a few games, but he's still a very reliable option.

Rob (Memphis)

Please I'm dying here. Bibby/G. Wallace for Salmons/Mo Williams?

Eric Karabell
  (3:46 PM)

Not a big Bibby fan, but I take that side. Salmons might or might not break out, and Mo will see a decrease in numbers playing with LeBron.

Bill (Detroit)

Addai or Slaton rest of way?

Eric Karabell
  (3:49 PM)

I think, believe it or not, that I take Slaton. I'm just not feeling the Addai love. Even when he returns, I think the Colts will be careful.

Matthew (Nashville,TN)

Should I start J Campbell or Schaub this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:49 PM)

I see Campbell has a great projection, but I would go Schaub. Think he made my top 5. Campbell did not.

Mike (Tampa)

Go Rays!!! Forte or R.Brown for the rest of the season. I'm looking at Brown's great playoff schedule.

Eric Karabell
  (3:51 PM)

I would agree, but don't go overboard with December schedules. Some of the teams we think stink right now might turn things around. I mean, two weeks ago, the Rams stunk. Now? Not so much. And GO PHILLIES!

Jeff (Detroit)

How high would you rank D. Howard in a head-to-head format? I'm thinking of using the 7th pick on him. Too early?

Eric Karabell
  (3:52 PM)

In h2h, where his free throw percentage isn't such a big deal, I think I'd go as high as No. 5 overall. Howard is great. In roto, outside my top 20.

Bob (DC)

Are you buying the revitalized Rams? Will Marc Bulger/Holt be useful fantasy contributors the rest of the year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:53 PM)

No. Not really. I'm buying that S-Jax is totally legit, but I thought he was anyway. Bulger hasn't really been so great. The defense has.

Mikandolo, Lisbon, Portugal

How does a H2H league change your draft strategy?

Eric Karabell
  (3:53 PM)

In hoops? Much more likely to punt a category. Much less likely to load up on players from the same team. Otherwise, not much different.

Ryan (SF)

Is it time to worry about TO? He just isn't getting the ball. Without Romo, I don't see that improving. Start Colston or J Stewart over him this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:57 PM)

I think Owens will be OK, but he'll remain inconsistent. Not a top-5 WR the way he's been used. I'd probably use Owens over Colston, but I'd think about Stewart.


Eric, OK, lets tie the bow on a major theme of this chat!! Would you trade Addai and Rhodes for Westbrook?

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

Yeah, probably. Would hate to have to decide each week on the Colts RBs if I owned both.

Tom (Manchester)

Ok what I really want to know is would you trade Warner and Roddy for Big Ben and Andre Johnson? Thanks!

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

Tough one! But yeah, I probably would, because Johnson can be the best WR in the game if he wants.

Steve (Springfield)

EK, speaking of projections: when it comes to setting a lineup, should we rely more on ESPN's projections or rankings? And maybe even more confusing, why are the two so far apart sometimes?

Eric Karabell
  (3:59 PM)

Just different opinions, that's all. I would rely on your instincts, frankly. It's your team. We just give advice.

Eric Karabell
  (4:00 PM)

OK, that's all for today's chat... thanks for the questions and enjoy Week 8!