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October 17, 3:00 PM ET
Chat with Eric Karabell

Eric Karabell
  (3:01 PM)

Hello to all and welcome to the latest fantasy sports chat session. I know there must be many fantasy hockey questions today so let's get ... OK, it's football. It's gotta be football. It's Week 7. Football. FOOTBALL. Thanks for showing up and here we go...

Bucky Badger (Madison, WI)

Big Ben or Cam this week??

Eric Karabell
  (3:02 PM)

Rankings are up and they are free and certainly it's easy to check them. I took Cam but apparently I was the only one. So there. And by the way, I do miss hockey. It's a great sport. Settle this and play hockey!

Gunnar (New Jersey)

Eric, if TMR wont go on the league this year, will you make a guest appearance?

Eric Karabell
  (3:02 PM)

Ha. I have not asked, nor do I plan to. He can have it all...

Jason (MI)

Which Giants backup would you rather have? Wilson or Brown

Eric Karabell
  (3:02 PM)

Wilson. Brown is hurt and I think the Giants realize Wilson is their future.

Mark (New England)

ROS: Steven Jackson or Alex Green > who comes out ahead?

Eric Karabell
  (3:03 PM)

Really? Is this up for debate? I suppose Green does have nice security now and people like him and Jackson is potentially in an even timeshare with Daryl Richardson but ... I'll go Jackson.

Ceasar (Louisiana)

Greg Jennings will he get back on track when he returns possibly next week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:03 PM)

I presume that when Jennings is healthy enough to play he will play and will play well.

Alex (Chicago)

Hey Eric, do you predict Spiller will begin taking the lion's share of touches over Jackson? He certainly appears to be the more explosive option.

Eric Karabell
  (3:06 PM)

I predict the Bills will continue what they did last week, which was 2 series for one guy, then 2 for the other, then back to the other guy for 2, rinse and repeat. It seemed to work and Spiller and Jackson seemed pleased by it. Both did well.

Jeff (Venice Beach)

Brady Quinn is a sad excuse for a QB, should I trade JCharles while his value is so high?

Eric Karabell
  (3:06 PM)

I don't think Quinn is much worse than Matt Cassel, which says more about Cassel. Trade Charles if you like, but he's pretty darn good.

JJ (cleveland rocks!)

How far up in your ranks does Hardesty move if T. Rich doesn't play? Thanks.

Eric Karabell
  (3:07 PM)

Probably just outside the top 20 after what we saw ridiculous Shonn Greene do last week. Talk about a surprising game.

John (Trenton)

Do you think Felix Jones will have the backfield to himself?? Or will it be a rotation/committee until Murray returns?

Eric Karabell
  (3:07 PM)

I think Felix will really disappoint us all like he always does so in a deeper format get Phillip Tanner.

Daniel M (Brooklyn)

EK, Hope everything is well because I' m in serious need of advice. Due to all the byes, how do you feel about using Spiller this week as my RB2 option and also I cant believe I'm going to ask this but would you sit Stafford and start Freeman against a lackluster D like the Saints?

Eric Karabell
  (3:08 PM)

There is nothing wrong with Spiller as a RB2 this week. He's good, it's a nice matchup. Stafford though... I'd use him over Freeman but yes, the matchup can dictate otherwise. I wouldn't argue with you.

Dave (C)

Does Wilson have any flex appeal this weekend with Bradshaw missing practice yesterday?

Eric Karabell
  (3:09 PM)

I seriously doubt Bradshaw misses Sunday's game or is hindered much. Wilson still hasn't shown much, so he'd only be flex in a deep league or if you're hurt by byes.

EJ (St Louis)

Do you watch game tape for your rankings or rely solely on statistics? Anybody that had seen Antonio Gates play this year knows he was the same player and due for a breakout. I'm just glad I didn't follow your advice to bench him for Jermichael Finley, Heath Miller or Pettigrew!

Eric Karabell
  (3:09 PM)

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. I watch plenty and Gates was not due for anything. But I do appreciate the hindsight.

John (St. Louie)

Have you watched much of Cam's film? Do you see him improving in the passing game? I'm a concerned, multi-league LaFell owner. Obviously he watches games hahaha

Eric Karabell
  (3:10 PM)

No, I don't see Cam improving much as a passer. In fact, he looks worse than last year, and really, last year he was not a great passer. Had some big games early and made a lot of plays with his legs, but as a passer... not great. Not too late for a turnaround though. I ranked him 6th, so I believe. But it also doesn't matter that much about Cam or Griffin throwing the ball.

John (St. Louie)

Also, gates looked awful before that game, especially the prior game on national tv haha these guys are the best, thanks Eric

Eric Karabell
  (3:11 PM)

Always good to point them out occasionally.. what do I care?

Ear (Man)

Would you trade Bowe for either Chris Johnson or Andre Johnson? Position is not an issue, purely production for the rest of the season.

Eric Karabell
  (3:12 PM)

I think Chris Johnson is the one there with the most upside, so even though he tortures us most of the time, I'd trade Bowe for him, irregardless of position. And Andre I have lost faith in. But he'll have a decent game at some point and then the smart guys can point out they never lost faith when he was averaging 7 fantasy points per game into November!

Greg (WA)

Time to cut Dennis Pitta?

Eric Karabell
  (3:12 PM)

Depends who else is there, but yeah, the recent trend is bad. The first few weeks become irrelevant now.

Alan (Miami, FL)

2 big questions. Got lynch going against the 49ers. would you start chris johnson over him? Also Stafford or dalton?

Eric Karabell
  (3:14 PM)

Bradshaw torched the 49ers so I don't see why people are so worried about Lynch against them. I don't see Lynch running wild, but still a good play. What's his floor? Is it worse than all the Chris Johnson 24-yard games? No. And I have Dalton a few spots ahead of Dalton. Honestly, and even KC Joyner wrote this today and I did on Monday, sell now on Stafford. Not the same guy.

Mr. Belding (Bayside High)

You have Dalton ranked higher than the other experts. What do you see that they don't?

Eric Karabell
  (3:14 PM)

Pittsburgh can be thrown on, and AJ Green should torch Taylor this week. Dalton turns the ball over but he's also tied with Eli Manning in season scoring. Not sure why people don't like Dalton more.

Sam (Philly)

Chris Johnson vs the Bills awful defense....too good to be true?

Eric Karabell
  (3:15 PM)

CJ has disappointed us before with great matchups. I'll use him in a league, but I hate being burned repeatedly by someone whose best game was against a top defense (Houston) and in easier matchups has done diddly.

Tom (Houston)

Will Cobb be shut down in a tough matchup or does he hold value while Jennings is still gone?

Eric Karabell
  (3:16 PM)

Holds value, but still No. 3 among the receivers, and we'll see if a healthy Finley gets involved as well.

Josh Gordon (Back to the bench?)

Two weeks fluke or sign or things to come?

Eric Karabell
  (3:16 PM)

A few broken plays but still Weeden is looking much better now and Gordon is open. And it's a nice matchup this week. I like them this week.

Zeke (Cali)

EK,Do you think Jimmy Graham plays this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:16 PM)

I do, and I think if he plays, when he plays, he will play well.

VBM (Mo City)

What happens first? Ryan Mathews becomes the Chargers no-huddle/third-down back, or Norv Turner is fired?

Eric Karabell
  (3:18 PM)

Neither. I think the Chargers realize Mathews is a bit brittle, and they have bigger fellows for the tough yards, the blocking, to even catch passes. Don't worry about Mathews. And coaches generally aren't let go during the season. Norv is safe. And even if he wasn't it doesn't affect what we're doing here in fantasy. Not like the new coach would fix Rivers or make Gates 10 years younger. Love the SD schedule after their bye, so buy low on these individuals.

Lee (MN)

Sadly, i'm choosing between Alex Green and Vick Ballard in the flex. All experts have Green ranked higher, but that Cleveland matchup is juicy. Can you explain why you like Green more?

Eric Karabell
  (3:19 PM)

I think Green gets more touches, and his matchup isn't exactly bad. The fact GB can throw so well opens things up. And we saw last week the Colts just totally abandon the run when they fell behind, which tells us how they feel about Ballard. And their run game.

jimmy (chicago)

Has Phillip Rivers aged 10 years in the past year? Looks old, slow, weak and like he should be a backup

Eric Karabell
  (3:20 PM)

You're only saying that because of the second half on Monday. In the first 5 games and the first half Monday he was fine. He'll be fine. Top 10 QB.

Jeff (ME)

Expectations for Antonio Brown seemed to be much higher prior to the season. I believe I remember even reading someone predicting he would have a better season than Wallace. While I am not complaining about his 70+yds a game average, do you think his production is on the rise and the TDs will come?

Eric Karabell
  (3:21 PM)

When I ranked Wallace above Brown in late-August you should have seen the comments. Funny, we never see those people admit .... eh, who cares. I think Brown is fine, but he's a possession guy, not a home run hitter. Wallace is everything. I see maybe 5-6 touchdowns for Brown, but 80 catches.

Jeff (Prague)

Greener Pastures..I just got Britt in a trade for Alex Green...do you like this trade even with the shortage of RB?

Eric Karabell
  (3:22 PM)

I do. I don't think Green is the next Alfred Morris, but he's competent. Britt's upside is immense if/when healthy.

Nathan Daggett (Richfield, MN )

drop Phillip Rivers

Eric Karabell
  (3:22 PM)

Definitely. Drop him for Tebow. Right. Away.

Rory (Vegas)

Whose the WR to own in Washington??

Eric Karabell
  (3:23 PM)

Nobody! Garcon is so overrated... but I can't say much about Moss or Hankerson. Honestly, Fred Davis should lead the team in catches and yards.

Dave (Indy)

Forced to use one of William Powell and Randall Cobb in a 14 team, non-PPR league... care to preview your FLEX rankings?

Eric Karabell
  (3:24 PM)

Based on where they each ranked at RB and WR, I'd think Powell will get the nod.

Sean (Wheelin )

Dave, have you watched Randall Cobb the last 2 weeks?

Eric Karabell
  (3:24 PM)

I don't know who Dave is, but Eric has. He's been great, yes. Hey, make him top 20 if you like.

Sean (Wheelin )

Well I disagree with you, EK

Eric Karabell
  (3:25 PM)

You should. This would be no fun if everyone agreed with me all the time. I don't agree with me some of the time either.

Todd (CA)

I love your sarcasm, but does it get you in trouble sometimes?

Eric Karabell
  (3:26 PM)

Only with the wife. With fantasy owners, nah. I stay outta trouble.

Jesse (Manch NH)

Eric, can we admit that your call for Antonio Gates' demise was maybe a year or two premature?

Eric Karabell
  (3:27 PM)

Because of Monday night? Really? From one hour of Monday night? Hey, I didn't say he'd be awful. I just said sell high based on name value. I didn't cut him in my league.

me (here)

could we get some real questions here? 14 team ppr league. Weak at WR (best one is Desean Jackson) while relatively strong at RB (i have MJD, A Morris and Freddy Jack). In a ppr league, who should I try and trade and what value do you think I could get. Im 3-3 with Graham as my TE and Peyton as my QB. TRying to target someone like Fitzgerald for one of my RB's

Eric Karabell
  (3:28 PM)

What is a real question? This novel? I can't possibly know what someone in your league would do for Fitzgerald. I can tell you if I owned Fitz it would take MJD to get him, not a Redskins rookie or a Bills timeshare guy. And frankly, if I owned MJD I wouldn't move him for any WR.

Dennis (Miami)

Shonn Green an obvious sell high? I just unloaded Steven Jackson as well...

Eric Karabell
  (3:29 PM)

I don't know if anyone has ever been more of an obvious sell high than Greene is before his next game.

Chris (Overland Park)

Eric, there are many fantasy football pundits out there - what makes your "analysis" more legit than the others? Do you have a system or a history of more accuracy than others? Please explain. Thanks.

Eric Karabell
  (3:31 PM)

I try to entertain and inform. I do well in my leagues, but I'm sure we all do. I don't have an answer for you on accuracy. I'm accurate enough that I do well, but certainly we won't hit on everything. There are accuracy followers out there but if I miss on the No. 20 tight end in a given week it shouldn't count like the No. 5 TE, so I don't give much credence. Defense isn't worth what QB is, either. So the word legit... I dunno, I think so. I guess that's up to the people who read and listen...

Jake (San Jose)

I know its early but best and worst call you've made this season?

Eric Karabell
  (3:33 PM)

Certainly when I ranked Chris Johnson top 10 I expected more, but I think we all did. I feel good about my MJD and Lynch calls. I loved Leshoure's chances for relevance months ago and that went well. But Alfred Morris has been great. So there's more good and some bad just at RB off the top of my head.

Justin (Nashville)

How nervous should I be about my QB situation with Vick, Ponder, and Weeden?

Eric Karabell
  (3:34 PM)

I think you can find matchup plays there to make it work. Ponder's schedule is all or nothing. Vick is fine while he's upright. Weeden has a nice matchup this week.

Joe (PA)

People do realize that by reading your posts and chat you don't get control over our teams right? Who cares if you're right...this is basically a faster, more interactive (and snarkier) version of reading a newspaper. (And I should get bonus points for using "snarky" in a fantasy football chat)

Eric Karabell
  (3:34 PM)

You definitely should...

Nostradamus (Pretty Good at the Fantasy Football Thing)

If you can't actually see the future, you shouldn't be in this business. That being said, do you see a start in Jenning's future this week?

Eric Karabell
  (3:36 PM)

If anyone could actually see the real future I'd think fantasy football wouldn't be their ultimate destination, ya know? I've seen no indication yet that Jennings will play this week, so I did not rank him. But I'm hoping we get positive news and I do rank him by Friday.

James (A Giant Peach)

Phillip Tanner will be the starter for Dallas by week 8 - Buy or Sell?

Eric Karabell
  (3:36 PM)

I literally give that a 50-50 chance.

Ryan (WI)

Is Julio Jones too much to pay for Ryan Matthews?

Eric Karabell
  (3:37 PM)

Considering how bereft of talent running back is, not at all.

David (NC)

Need a Def. Who should I drop between A. Green or F. Jones?

Eric Karabell
  (3:37 PM)

Drop the defense you've got now. If you can't, and don't care about this week when Jones has a nice matchup, I drop Jones.

Jeffrey (Tulsa, OK)

I have a tough time trusting your advice after proclaimed Antonio Gates done last week. Please tell me why I should continue to listen to your rankings. Thanks ...

Eric Karabell
  (3:38 PM)

You should only listen to Berry, Cockcroft and Harris.

Joe Nile (Chicago)

I lost Demarco Murray and everyone else in my league beat me to the waiver wire. Which sucky backup has a better game this week? David Wilson or Montario Hardesty? Thanks E.K.

Eric Karabell
  (3:39 PM)

If Richardson sits then Hardesty for sure. Great matchup. I don't think Wilson gets enough touches to do much, but certainly I'd keep him owned for later.

Ryan (Mountain View, CA)

Am I crazy to play Josh Gordon over Marshawn this week? Marshawn figures to get 60-80 yds with a slim chance of a TD. Gordon's got a good matchup.

Eric Karabell
  (3:40 PM)

Why does he have a slim chance at scoring? Bradshaw ran wild on the Niners. When I have a decision in doubt I tend to side with who gets more touches. Can you possible make the case Gordon gets more touches than Lynch? He might get 5 to Lynch's 20.

Geoff (Denver)

Eric - I have hard time tying my own shoe and recognizing the difference between a football and a baseball, why should I listen to your fantasy advice?

Eric Karabell
  (3:40 PM)

Sounds like you're clearly in the right place then.

Brandon (RI)

BASEBALL! Got a keeper question. Leave out one, Kinsler, Wright, Cliff Lee. 6x6 with OPS, QS, K/BB (already keeping Trout, Cutch)

Eric Karabell
  (3:41 PM)

BASEBALL!!! Leave the pitcher out. He never wins (sarcasm; could have the same year in 2013 and win 20.)

Sean (Wheelin )

In a PPR vacuum.. Deal SJax and James Jones for Hakeem Nicks? (I would still have Richardson as a flex who I feel like will produce just as good or better than Jackson, and Jones cant possibly get 2 tds a game, especially with Jennings comeback looming, or am I off on this thinking?)

Eric Karabell
  (3:42 PM)

I see your point and even buy it to a degree, but I do not think Richardson will match Jackson from here on out, and I think even if/when Nicks plays this week, it tells us nothing about future missed games.

Michael (Texas)

People hating because gates has been garbage so you say sell high. So people don't play him bc they agree with you. But then it's your fault that they didn't play him so they can't trust you. Ridiculous. It's your team ppl, get that through your thick heads.To my question. Is stafford worth starting this week or should I look at getting dalton for the start?

Eric Karabell
  (3:43 PM)

It honestly doesn't bother me. It makes me laugh. I think Dalton is the better play this week. But if Stafford throws 6 touchdowns I'll pretend Cockcroft moderated this chat instead of me.

Carey (Rochester)

Need a bye week replacement for Papa Manning, whos the most droppable? future bye week fill in Scott Chandler, Titus Young, or Josh Gordon?

Eric Karabell
  (3:43 PM)

There's a guy I was wrong about it, Titus Young. I dropped him in a league 2 weeks ago. Sad. So much talent.

Brian (NY)

Trying to get ahead of my big bye week - any reason not to drop Blair Walsh for Matt Bryant when he comes off next week? Love Blair but have like 4 guys on bye in week 11. (I know, I know...kicker question)

Eric Karabell
  (3:46 PM)

I would never, ever own 2 kickers at one time. Drop your kicker for one not on bye. Seriously.

Scott (EK's Sarcasm Corner)

You Should re-name the chat "Sarcasm Corner"..... Landed Spiller and V-Jax for Charles in a ppr. I was very thin at WR and Charles scares me when his games get out of hand. What do you think??

Eric Karabell
  (3:46 PM)

Makes sense to me, but I'm really not too worried about Charles. Spiller does have top 10 upside himself, though.

Jeff (Atlanta)

How safe would you feel about having Ridley as your RB2 going forward? BB scares me.

Eric Karabell
  (3:47 PM)

Scares all of us. But if Ridley stops fumbling it's ok. It doesn't bother me that other New England running backs get touches. That's good. Ridley getting 30 touches would just get him hurt. Yes, RB2.

Phillie Phanatic ((Golf course))

Thinking of trading RGIII and rolling with Eli. Am I craaaaaaaaazy? What's his trade value?

Eric Karabell
  (3:49 PM)

Not crazy at all. If you think Griffin will finish the season No. 1, then keep him. But it always depends what you get back. Griffin for Mikel Leshoure is not selling high, it's just selling. Get a top-5 RB. There's nothing wrong with Eli.

Buckley (Antelope)

Is playing Alex Smith a wise idea? He was horrible last week and he has small hands. He has a hard time holding onto the football like he has an otter pop in his hand prior to gripping the pigskin. Thoughts?

Eric Karabell
  (3:51 PM)

I don't think Smith is going to be that bad every week, though I don't like the matchup this week. Perhaps his finger injury was a factor. That said, Smith was a fine fantasy option last year because he didn't turn the ball over, and he was fine until this past Sunday in deep leagues.

Frank (Palo Alto)

If the Rams move out of playoff contention, does St. Louis trade SJax?

Eric Karabell
  (3:53 PM)

I wrote about this potentially happening a few weeks ago, not so much that he's traded, but they want to see what others - Richardson or Pead - can do with legit touches. But for now they're contending.

Michael Ball (Raleigh, NC)

I volunteer at a special needs school and earlier this year I convinced some of the kids who were interested in sports to play in a 10-team league with me for small stakes. Anyway, last week I was playing this kid who has the Bears defense (which was on bye). By Saturday he still hadn't picked up a fill-in (I think he might not have internet at his house) so I picked up and dropped every available defense (in our league dropped players or defenses are placed on waivers for three days) thus preventing him from being able to get a defense. I ended up winning by 2 points. My wife seems to think this was a cheesy move. Your thoughts?

Eric Karabell
  (3:53 PM)

You should be ashamed of yourself. Wow. These are my readers.

Scott (Northglenn, CO)

Decker a sell as a high WR2? Sked gets easier..would you trade him and Vick for Cam and Floyd?

Eric Karabell
  (3:54 PM)

I'd take the Cam side because I don't see Vick playing 16 games, for potentially a variety of reasons. But I like Decker quite a bit.

Sean (Tampa)

You are the only ranker that has Lynch ahead of Ridley this week.. Do you not trust Ridley to get 20+ touches against a poor Jets run D?

Eric Karabell
  (3:55 PM)

Dare to be different, right? Doesn't mean I'm wrong. Like I've said numerous times, if Bradshaw ran on the Niners, why can't Lynch?

Chris (NYC)

Based on your comments this chat, are you saying that Jennings is an excellent buy low candidate?

Eric Karabell
  (3:55 PM)

Yes, I am!

Kenneth (Tacoma)

Do you look forward to these chats or dread them? After all, you often have to face the music about bad calls you've made.

Eric Karabell
  (3:56 PM)

I enjoy seeing what people think. And you need to have thick skin to do this. If anyone thinks we'll be 100 percent accurate they're unrealistic. Try to be right a lot more than being wrong, but know you will make bad calls. I laugh at the comments I see...

Chris (NY)

Cutler ot Tannehill ROS?

Eric Karabell
  (3:57 PM)

Cutler, but it's not exactly a slam dunk. Hey, remember when Cutler had that great matchup against the Packers... yep, that's Jay Cutler. Inconsistent. And not real nice, either.

Eric (DC baby)

can you please post a link to the rankings before you go? thanks for the chat EK

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

http://sports.espn.go.com/fantasy/football/ffl/story?page=12ranksWeek7RB

Greg (Northshore, MA)

Worth buying low on Rivers with a softer schedule upcoming or is he too risky?

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

Everyone is risky, but I'm buying low.

Dan (NYC)

Is there any reason to own J Stewart?

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

I'm running out of reasons.

Alex (NY,NY)

Don't go! You haven't given me your number yet!

Eric Karabell
  (3:58 PM)

Here's a number. 7.

Mike (LA)

I want you to be 110% accurate.

Eric Karabell
  (3:59 PM)

I will definitely kind of try.

Peyton (Kansas City)

Am I worth owning at all?

Eric Karabell
  (3:59 PM)

Hillis, no.

Tiger fan (D Town)

Ballard/A. Green or Lynch

Eric Karabell
  (4:00 PM)

Lynch

sal (oregon)

Any shot Kapernick becomes the QB in SF?

Eric Karabell
  (4:00 PM)

Only if Smith is hurt. Or bad for another month.

Eric Karabell
  (4:01 PM)

OK, thanks to all for the excellent questions today. Wow, thousands of questions each and every week and I want you all to know I do appreciate them. Yeah, we have some fun occasionally in the room, but I never lie. Enjoy yourselves in this game and best of luck, because we all need it. Good luck in Week 7 and the rest of the year!