NFL fantasy: Down goes CedBen

Cedric Benson's injury shouldn't be a big deal. He was only the 24th-ranked RB in fantasy circles....

Cedric Benson's injury shouldn't be a big deal. He was only the 24th-ranked RB in fantasy circles. (Reuters)

DAN BILICKI, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:16 AM ET


If you thought the sky was falling for your fantasy team after Cedric Benson was placed on the IR this week, well, think again.

The truth is that Benson wasn’t even a starter-calibre fantasy back for the first five weeks of the season. He is ranked only 24th overall in points scored for RBs and is behind backups such as Andre Brown and Jackie Battle. Also, Benson could be back in eight weeks, but I wouldn’t hold my breath on that one.

Alex Green and James Starks will be the two benefactors for Benson’s carries, with the sophomore Green getting the majority of touches. While I would recommend picking up Green, I wouldn’t start him unless you have injury or bye-week problems.

John Kuhn is still around to vulture TDs too, again limiting the other backs’ scoring potential.

-- The Cardinals have quite a situation at RB, too. With Ryan Williams out for the season after shoulder surgery and Beanie Wells still shelved on the recallable IR for at least six more weeks, Arizona will go with the committee approach in the back field. LaRod Stephens-Howling is expected to get the start against Buffalo, but he’s coming back from a hip injury. It also must be remembered that the Arizona offensive line is hurting.

-- I’ve got to admit: I checked an update on my phone about the Steelers game on Thursday night, saw a rushing TD by ‘B. Batch’ and thought: ‘So Ben Roethlisberger got injured, old Charlie Batch scrambled in for one and my app got the initial wrong?’ Turns out I was wrong. The unknown Baron Batch was the top RB for Pittsburgh and had one less carry than Isaac Redman and Rashard Mendenhall combined. Keep an eye out on this situation next week.

-- Robert Griffin III owners can breathe easy. He’ll be good to go on Sunday against the Vikings after suffering a concussion last week. He didn’t miss any practice and will be 100%. The only downside we could see is that the ’Skins might dial back the running plays with their rookie QB. .

n Aaron Hernandez is back fully practising with the Patriots and that could mean a shakeup for the Patriots offence. Remember, before Hernandez went down with a high ankle sprain, Wes Welker was barely seeing any action. That scenario could be revisited this week if Hernandez, the speedy tight end, is back, so I’d hold off on playing Welker against that potent Seattle D.

-- Colts RB Donald Brown hurt his knee and is out 2-3 weeks. Vick Ballard will step in as starter and could be a good plug-and-play depending on matchups and bye weeks.

-- Here’s a little tidbit of concern if you’re a LeSean McCoy owner: Twice the Eagles had first and goal from the three and both times McCoy, a reliable TD scorer in his career, wasn’t even on the field.

SIT OR START

Sit

Eli Manning, QB, NYG at SF

The Niners have allowed only two passing touchdowns in their past five home games.

Start

Christian Ponder, QB, MIN at WAS

The Skins pass defence is atrocious and he has been working well with Percy Harvin.

Sit

Ahmad Bradshaw, RB, NYG at SF

You just can’t risk playing your running back against this San Francisco defence, ranked No. 1 against the rush in the NFL.

Start

Vick Ballard, RB, IND at NYJ

The Jets are one of the worst run defences in fantasy and Ballard will get a big amount of carries.

Sit

Alex Green, RB, GB at HOU

Despite one long run last week, there’s no reason to believe that he’ll be a good fantasy player yet, even if he is starting.

Start

Randall Cobb, GB, at HOU

The Texans are tough, but it’s possible that Cobb gets a lot of touches in this game.

Start

Andre Roberts, WR, ARI vs. BUF

The Bills give up a lot of passing yards this season and will be doubling Larry Fitzgerald.

Sit

Jermichael Finley, TE, GB at HOU

He’s going to be a game-time decision and that could put you in a tough position on Sunday night.

Start

Kyle Rudolph, TE, MIN at WAS

Gets a lot of red-zone targets and the Skins are second-worst against opposing TEs.

ADD OF THE WEEK

Alex Green, RB, GB

The Packers have a good fantasy offence and their top running back will always have some value – even if Green Bay backs don’t score many rushing TDs. Green will get the first shot at carrying the load with James Starks getting some touches as well. I wouldn’t go out starting either just yet though.

DROP OF THE WEEK

Ryan Williams, RB, ARI

The Cardinals hard-luck running back suffered the second season-ending injury of his young career last Thursday against the Rams, hurting his shoulder. He has been put on the IR just a week after earning the feature back role for Arizona. He’s not too bad of a loss to your team though, as he hadn’t scored a TD yet and had two fumbles.

WAIVER DEFENCE OF THE WEEK

Buffalo Bills

If there’s one thing that the Buffalo Bills defence needed to see this week, it was the porous, banged-up offensive line of the Arizona Cardinals. The Cards couldn’t block Chris Long last week and Mario Williams and Co. are supposedly a step up. We should see some sacks and a low-scoring contest.

STAT CORNER

The Bears have the same amount of INT return TDs (5) as they do rushing TDs this season.

 


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