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November 2, 3:00 PM ET
Chat with Eric Karabell

Eric Karabell
  (3:02 PM)

Hello there and welcome to the latest fantasy sports chat session! I am Eric. Lots to discuss today as we prepare for Week 9 in football, and if offseason baseball is your thing, send those questions, too! Thanks for showing up and let's have a little fun...

Ryan (CT)

Hello Eric! I've read that Mcgahee is practicing today! Is he worth a flex play this weekend vs Oakland if he does indeed play?

Eric Karabell
  (3:03 PM)

I have read that Willis McGahee intends to play this week as well, which is why I ranked him 20th at running back. Nobody else ranked Willis. Hey, I'm a positive guy! And yes, very good flex option... if he plays.

chris (texas)

Do I really turn down Chris Johnson and keep the law firm if CJ2K is offered?

Eric Karabell
  (3:04 PM)

Sorry to say but yeah, I wouldn't be investing in Chris Johnson any more this season. I wouldn't drop him, but I'd prefer BenJarvus at this point. Sad, isn't it?

Chris (Indy)

Eric - I could use some trade assistance. Who wins - Fitzgerald/Best/Morris for Austin/DeSean/Starks?

Eric Karabell
  (3:05 PM)

Interesting. I think the second one is better, with two potential top 10 WRs and a useful RB. I just don't know about Lions RBs moving forward and at least Starks is out there every week.

Steven (Baton Rouge, LA)

Would you trade either BJGE or Jackie Battle + DHB for Vincent Jackson in a 1/2 PPR league?

Eric Karabell
  (3:06 PM)

No. I doubt I would. Jackson hasn't looked special in a month and his quarterback keeps throwing picks. And it's possible Law Firm and Battle are top 20 RBs. Heyward-Bey is useful, too.

vince (san mateo)

what do you make of jonathan baldwin

Eric Karabell
  (3:07 PM)

Well, I think he's a home run hitter type but there's no indication you can rely on him yet. If he's like Torrey Smith or Devery Henderson, then it doesn't help us much.

Carl (NYC)

How do you see the Dallas backfield shaking out once Jones comes back. Have them both and want to get some insight. Thanks!

Eric Karabell
  (3:08 PM)

I don't see any way Felix Jones isn't involved somehow. DeMarco Murray had his big game and even against Philly he looked good when he was given the chance ... but Felix has to play, too. Likely a Carolina-type timeshare. Boo.

johnnieb. ((SF))

Do U think Andre or Nicks plays this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:09 PM)

I ranked Nicks well, but did not rank Andre Johnson at all. I'm hoping both play. Hard to tell on Wednesday. If Andre plays, always top 10.

mike (chicago)

CJ0K or Jamaal Charles in 2012?

Eric Karabell
  (3:10 PM)

I like that question! You know, I still think Chris Johnson has a future, but this is frustrating. But Charles will have had plenty of time to come back from wrecking his knee. Gotta say Charles.

Nate (NJ)

If DMC is ruled out does M.Bush become a dependable RB 2?

Eric Karabell
  (3:11 PM)

I ranked Bush in my top 20 this week, assuming McFadden does not play. If McFadden plays, he'd be in my top 20 and Bush would be like 25-30. Bush is likely to get enough touches no matter what this week. It's Denver.

James (Some Giant Peach)

V Jax is barely in the top 20 now - where do you think he is at the end of the year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:11 PM)

I'm concerned he will not be getting much better. Rivers, too.

LittleRon (WV)

Need a bye replacement for DST this week. Looking at Dallas or Atlanta...Which do you prefer?

Eric Karabell
  (3:13 PM)

Tough to argue the Falcons won't have a decent game at Indy. I could see Tarvaris Jackson having some success in Dallas, but with turnovers. I went with Dallas.

mark (pa)

in a dynasty league where u can keep your whole roster, what sort of value does demarco murray have going forward? do u see him becoming a stud?

Eric Karabell
  (3:13 PM)

No, not really. I think we'll look back on that 253-yard Rams game in two years and say WHOA!

Sean (Auburn)

I know this can be a Rankings question but I'm looking for insight. Inconsistent Freeman or Underwhelming Tebow this week? Thanks for your thoughts!

Eric Karabell
  (3:14 PM)

The thing about Tebow is nothing has changed for me. He was AWFUL and still got 12 points. That's what matters. He scored fantasy points. Yeah, he's brutal throwing. My only concern is that John Fox benches him. Could happen by halftime this week. That's why my Tebow rank wasn't as great as Week 8.

Joel (MI )

Austin's back to back duds....just a product of those respective game flows ? Better times ahead right ?

Eric Karabell
  (3:15 PM)

Great time ahead with a great schedule. Invest in Miles and Dez.

Chris (TN)

Finley and Murray too much to give for Jimmy Graham? I have rice, mcfadden, and the wash backs

Eric Karabell
  (3:16 PM)

Well, it's not a terrible deal, but I think you'd better keep Murray around. The Washington backs? Yikes. Torain has 30 yards on 21 carries the past 3 weeks.

Steve (Milwaukee)

Why does Tristan have Miles Austin ahead of Mike Wallace? Am I missing something?

Eric Karabell
  (3:16 PM)

Makes sense. I like Austin this week... but I always like Wallace, too. Tough game against Ravens for Wallace.

Mike (NJ)

After Stafford's bye this week, would you rather roster Shaun Hill as his handcuff (did pretty well last year), or a guy like Freeman or Bradford to be the insurance for an injury?

Eric Karabell
  (3:17 PM)

Probably Freeman/Bradford. More likely they will play. I wrote about Hill in last week's Sneaky Add Blog, he was pretty good last season.

Roger (NM)

Should I drop Dallas Clark for Brent Celek?

Eric Karabell
  (3:18 PM)

No. Not sure either is worth using, really. But Clark is closer. Celek had a nice game, but it matched his season total of fantasy points. Don't expect much.

Steve (NC)

UGHHHH, BGE, speak to me EK about the NE backfield!!!

Eric Karabell
  (3:19 PM)

I'm not too worried. I doubt Kevin Faulk will get that much run again. The Pats were down and Law Firm wasn't doing much. He'll be fine.

Ron (SD)

When is ESPN's trading deadline for leagues?

Eric Karabell
  (3:19 PM)

I think it's right before Thanksgiving. Coming up soon!

Justin (NC)

Is Cam a one year wonder or the real deal?

Eric Karabell
  (3:20 PM)

Greatest QB of all time. Well, I think he's the real deal anyway.

James (Some Giant Peach)

Do you think it will click this year for Ed Dickson and Flacco? Dickson seems like the perfect target to keep Flacco from deflating but not lookin' good so far

Eric Karabell
  (3:20 PM)

That's because Flacco has looked like poor Tebow in terms of accuracy. Not sure what's up with Flacco. Dickson has no chance on many of these targets he gets.

Dave (GA)

Who would you rather have the rest of the season. Colston or Hicks.

Eric Karabell
  (3:21 PM)

Who is Hicks? If you mean Nicks, then I take Nicks. If you actually mean someone named Hicks, then no.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

I see you as does Ringer strike you as a saavy pickup? or is there no way no how they give him a crack at the starting gig if they're in the playoff chase?

Eric Karabell
  (3:22 PM)

I think if the Titans want to win, they have to give Ringer a chance, even if it's a timeshare. But let's be clear: I don't think Ringer is that good. He did better than Johnson, but it's not like he's at 4 yards per carry, either. I'd add Ringer but wouldn't play him this week.

Ryan Torain (In "Shanny's World")

Am I droppable??

Eric Karabell
  (3:23 PM)

It's dangerous to cut him because who knows what Shanahan does, but I'd just try to avoid Redskins now. They're not good.

jp (In my PJ's)

Eric, its nice to have a day off the day you chat...CJ is he going to be in my line up the rest of the year?

Eric Karabell
  (3:24 PM)

I'm hopeful, but let's be realistic. It's Week 9 now. He's showed very little. He got stuffed by Indy! But I do think cutting him is a mistake, just in case. Who else has this kind of upside? Wouldn't we think less of him if he did all of a sudden turn things around? That would mean he could have done more in October! So frustrating.

Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay)

Am I even gonna play the last few weeks of the season if we clinch early?

Eric Karabell
  (3:25 PM)

As long as Alex Smith and the Niners keep on winning, it's good news for Aaron Rodgers owners. It's only a one-game lead for the Packers.

John (New Brunswick)

I thought AJ had a reputation for being fairly tough. It seems like he is kind of being a baby with him hammy, no??

Eric Karabell
  (3:26 PM)

I never accuse hurt players of that. I think if Andre Johnson could play, he would. And the Texans should be cautious. That said, I don't expect he will play this week.

Elie Reiss (Denver, CO)

So I'm one of these frustrated CJ0K owners and I'm struggling taking him out of my lineup. I haven't taken him out this season and Ive managed a 5-3 season thus far. Can I really start No-Show or Kevin Faulk over him?..

Eric Karabell
  (3:28 PM)

No. I only sit Chris Johnson if I have better options. When we say he's a sit it's not if Faulk is your other choice. I mean, there remains upside here.

Joel (MI )

Eric, Is Ryan and Tebow adequate QB depth for ROS or should I pick up Bradford or Alex Smith ?

Eric Karabell
  (3:29 PM)

Ugh, make a trade. I think Ryan is worth it, but not really a top 10 guy. And Tebow who knows. I don't think Sam or Alex is an upgrade.

Eric (Chicago)

Alex is an upgrade over Tebow. Don't start Tebow unless you want to lose!

Eric Karabell
  (3:31 PM)

Not true. Tebow's first 4 starts were all 20 fantasy points or more. Last week he had 12, still more than Brees. Alex Smith isn't doing much.

Val (Las Vegas)

Is it time to forget Ridley as a late season producer for this season?

Eric Karabell
  (3:34 PM)

Nope. Belichick just as likely to let Ridley have 10 touches this week. I just don't expect any Pats RB except Law Firm to do much.

Kevin (Boston)

In many leagues, waiver decisions have to be made Tuesday night. Have you guys considered releasing your weekly rankings a day earlier? Either way, thanks for all your hard work!

Eric Karabell
  (3:36 PM)

I just do what I am told, but if you need free agent advice we've got Chris Harris' column every Tuesday. It's pretty good.

matt (work)

I know you aren't stephania... but my running backs this week are bradshaw, dmc, greene, moreno, torain... pick 3?

Eric Karabell
  (3:37 PM)

I am not. I think Bradshaw is fine. I think MCFadden sits. As of now, Bradshaw, Greene, ugh Torain. I think McGahee is playing for Denver.

Josh (Tacoma)

For this week what two would you start? Do I even consider starting Battle over my other two options...Mendy and Benson?

Eric Karabell
  (3:37 PM)

I'd consider him, but my rankings say I like Benson quite a bit too. I'd use Mendy and Benson.

Marcus (Clarksville, TN)

Everyone knows that EK is down on Bradshaw...Tristan too!!! Haters! J/K

Eric Karabell
  (3:38 PM)

Ha! I ranked him 10th, better than everyone else. A sure sign I don't like him!

Kit (Colorado)

Carson Palmer intrigues me, going against the Denver D. Is he worth a bye week start, this week only?

Eric Karabell
  (3:39 PM)

I think people are under the impression Palmer was good last year. He was not. Of course, the Denver defense can make anyone look good...but I'm not actively trying to use Palmer this week, that's my point.



Eric Karabell
  (3:39 PM)

Not really. I doubt TJ Houshmandzadeh will get many chances in Oakland, but he knows Palmer and he's a possession guy, so I suppose there's a chance he's Davone Bess of the West.

Andy (Boston)

Will Ryan Mathews ever stay healthy enough to tap his potential?!!!

Eric Karabell
  (3:40 PM)

Well, it's only his second year in the league, so I would like to see a bit more. But the early returns say he's not durable, yes.

Darnell Jefferson (THE PROGRAM)

Would it be a wise move to start Beanie Wells over Ray Rice this week purely based on the matchups (I also have FJAX & GORE)?...

Eric Karabell
  (3:41 PM)

I'd say it's up to you. I ranked Rice 8th and Beanie 9th and I never get too worked up about that small a difference. Matchups do matter, but ... Rice can still do well against Pitt.

Peyton (MS)

Jackie Battle and Antonio Brown for Peyton Hills? I need someone to start exploding, so I'm comfortable with some risk

Eric Karabell
  (3:42 PM)

Well, I wouldn't do it, because I think Battle can outscore Hillis. I do not see the same Hillis running over players like last year. And I like Brown.


Are you a believer in Crabtree?

Eric Karabell
  (3:43 PM)

Somewhat. But his QB rarely throws the ball downfield and now he's gotta deal with Braylon taking some targets, too.

Beanie Wells (Arizona)

I just injured my finger typing!!!! Am I just soft, or are these injuries legit? I sure seemed fine against BAL.

Eric Karabell
  (3:44 PM)

C'mon. Players play through more injuries than we can possibly imagine. It's not easy. I say we applaud Beanie for playing while hurt. He played better than I expected.

Anthony (Cali)

any huge difference between Big Ben and Romo ROS?

Eric Karabell
  (3:44 PM)

Not really. I think Romo is better statistically, and has the easy schedule, but neither are in my top 6 QBs and both made the top 10.

Kevin (Cashville)

Is Welker + Ryan Matthews for McCoy too much?

Eric Karabell
  (3:45 PM)

Not at all. McCoy could potentially be the best non-QB in fantasy this season. He's been terrific. And who knows if Mathews misses some games?

Erik (Bay Area)

Comeback 2nd half of the season for Vernon Davis? Can't afford anymore 2-pt. days.

Eric Karabell
  (3:45 PM)

Unfortunately, I doubt it. Smith just doesn't look his way as much as we would like.

Mark Sanchez (NY)

I'm I a top 10 qb ROS? and what about this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:46 PM)

No and no. And then no again.

Henry (Harrisburg, PA)

If you own both CJ and Foster, which handcuff is more important: Ringer or tate?

Eric Karabell
  (3:47 PM)

I think if Foster got hurt this weekend and would miss the rest of the season that Tate would be a top-10 RB. That's what handcuff means to me; not only that the backup would play, but play well enough to matter. I don't see Ringer that way.

Randy (Tha Dimas)

If Torain has a big game in the next couple of weeks would u sell high on him?

Eric Karabell
  (3:49 PM)

Yes. I'd sell if he had a good first half this week. I was selling a month ago when he had his one good game. Literally Washington might finish 4-12, hard to do when you're 3-1.

bryan (here)

You think Helu gets the start this week? They've gotta give him a shot to actually run the ball!

Eric Karabell
  (3:50 PM)

What seems reasonable to us is rarely what Shanahan does. So no, even though you and I might think Torain has been awful and Helu deserves a shot, I half-expect Tashard Choice to split carries with John Riggins this week.

Frank (Toledo)

I just traded Beanie for CJohnson. Good or bad for me?

Eric Karabell
  (3:50 PM)

Well, too early to tell, but it's not a trade I would have made. CJ is showing no signs.

Brian (Philly)

What do you think of Cassel's potential this week? (Stafford on bye). Would you play Tebow or Cassel if you were the underdog?

Eric Karabell
  (3:52 PM)

Why are you the underdog? Did Vegas put a line out? I wouldn't use any site's projections as a guide that someone is favored. Play your best options, always. And I think Cassel is the safer option. Tebow could score more or be lifted at halftime. That's risky. And Cassel is servicable.

Greg (Indy)

I've seen your year to end rankings and know you have Julio Jones over DHB. For some reason both were dropped in my league. What makes you prefer Jones over DHB?

Eric Karabell
  (3:54 PM)

The QB mainly. I think it's foolish that people think Palmer will be a top 10 QB. Matt Ryan is closer and let's face it, Jones is a potential top 10 guy himself in a year or two. Dominant college guy, has size, speed, everything. Hey-Bey has upside but not like this.

Elie (Zona)

If Helu were to get the start, where would you rank him?

Eric Karabell
  (3:55 PM)

With the Wash offensive line and lack of QB and WR options, doesn't matter who starts. But probably around where Torain is, 30 or so. We have no idea if Helu can play. Neither does Shanny.

Jay (Delware)

Speaking of Julio Jones, how does he impact Roddy this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:56 PM)

I just don't buy into any of that stuff. White has had good games and bad wiht and without Julio Jones. It's still one cornerback on Roddy, one on Jones. The "taking attention" angle for a defense doesn't fly, and the stats prove it.

Seth (Minneapolis)

With Andre's injury concenrs and the potential for this to drag out, would you trade him for someone you can count on playing, like a Bowe?

Eric Karabell
  (3:57 PM)

I have certainly done that in the past and see why it is relevant in this case, yes.

Coach Shannahan (DC)

You've answers a lot of Redskins questions...You got a beef with me or something???

Eric Karabell
  (3:57 PM)

Not really. You make me laugh. But apparently many fantasy owners have a beef with you!

Joe McKnight (NJ)

Rex says I will get more opportunities this week! Your thoughts?

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

About time! I'd like to see McK get 10 carries... although to be fair Greene has looked good the past few weeks. I'd say McKnight could be this week's sneaky pickup!

Billy (NYC)

Where would you put CJ as far as a keeper? Would a full offseason/preseason possibly cure him or is he really done for good?

Eric Karabell
  (3:59 PM)

Not top 10 RB based on what we know, but not much further down. Perhaps a nice offseason with practice time will heal him up. Still tremendous speed and talent here. I wouldn't throw him back into a draft.

Xander (Philly)

Buzzer beater!!! Who gets more carries, Ringer, Addai or M. Lynch this weekend? THANKS!!!!!!!!!

Eric Karabell
  (4:00 PM)

I say it's Lynch. Though that's not an endorsement he'll do much.

Eric Karabell
  (4:00 PM)

OK, that is about all the time we have for today. Hope I answered your questions and again, as always, thanks for your time and attention. We couldn't do this without you. Have a great day and best of luck in Week 9 and beyond!