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Lames: Fitz flop on the horizon in Minnesota

Brad Evans
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Minnesota's relentless pass rush could keep Fitzgerald under wraps. (USP)

Each week the Noise highlights 10 bold names who he believes are destined to torpedo your teamleave egg on his face. For those playing the Lames home edition, each player must be started in at least 50 percent of Yahoo! leagues to qualify. As an accountability advocate, results, whether genius or moronic, will post the following week using the scoring system shown here. If you're a member of TEAM HUEVOS, post your Week 7 Lames in the comments section below.

Matthew Stafford, Det, QB (81-percent started)
Matchup: at Chi
Somehow it appears the Madden Curse has infected Stafford and not the video game's cover athlete, Calvin Johnson. The popular second-round pick, off one of the greatest QB seasons in NFL history, has seen a precipitous drop in production. Plagued by turnovers and misconnects, he's yet to tally a multi-TD passing game this season. Still, he remains on pace to throw an arm-taxing 697 times this season, which would best his franchise record 663 attempts from a year ago. Unfortunately, his dip in YPA ('11: 7.6, '12: 6.8) and red-zone inefficiency continue to keep him outside the QB top-12 in per game average. So does his uneven performance in-game. Evident in last week's thrilling win in Philly, Stafford has become the league's latest comeback king. His fourth quarter QB rating 103.9 completely dwarfs what little he's accomplished earlier in games (1st: 48.1, 2nd: 58.7, 3rd: 80.1). If he didn't sleepwalk through first halves, he would easily be a top-five signal caller. Consistency will be key for Stafford Monday night in Chicago. Tim Jennings and company have yet to allow a multi-TD passer and have given up a mere 6.1 yards per attempt. Earlier this season, proven passers Aaron Rodgers and Tony Romo failed to reach the 20-fantasy point mark against the Bears. Stafford was a turnover machine the last time he visited the Windy City, throwing four picks. In the rematch, anticipate a similar outcome.

Fearless Forecast: 26-42, 283 passing yards, 1 touchdown, 3 interceptions, 4 rushing yards, 15.6 fantasy points

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Ray Rice, Bal, RB (99-percent started)
Matchup: at Hou
The impact of Ray Lewis' loss on the Ravens isn't limited to defense. His on-field presence and leadership will most certainly take a team-wide toll. It's possible the Ravens could use it as a rallying cry. They could also crumble, leaving owners hoping for favorable returns on both sides of the ball dejected. It's extremely rare Rice's name is mentioned in this space. He's arguably the league's most versatile weapon, a certifiable PPR behemoth. He's finished in 'Lame' territory only three times in his past 24 games. Accurately predicting a Rice letdown is akin to stumbling across 'binders full of women' -- slim odds. Still, Houston, even minus premier run stopper Brian Cushing, is capable of forking Rice. Bradie James, who filled the massive void left by Cushing, graded out nearly the same against the run last week against Green Bay as the former All-Pro did in his previous five games. Granted the Ravens are a more formidable ground foe, the replacement's effort was nothing to scoff at. The Texans, collectively, are one of fantasy's stingiest run defenses. They've yet to surrender a RB rushing TD and largely held established commodities Reggie Bush, Maurice Jones-Drew and Willis McGahee in check. Of all people, Chris Johnson is the only rusher to hurdle the 70-yard mark on the ground versus Houston this year. It's serious HUEVOS, but it's not improbable Rice bombs in H-Town.

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Fearless Forecast: 17 carries, 66 rushing yards, 3 receptions, 15 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 10.4 fantasy points

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Marshawn Lynch, Sea, RB (81-percent started)
Matchup: at SF
A tango with San Francisco, fresh off allowing its first 100-yard rusher at Candlestick in 21 regular games, means Lynch could be more 'Least' than 'Beast' Mode. No amount of Skittles can prepare him for the defensive onslaught. The Niners, worn down by the incessant pounding issued by the Giants offensive line and Ahmad Bradshaw, didn't resemble their usual immovable selves. It's unlikely to happen again. After all, Russell Wilson is no Eli Manning. San Francisco, unlike last week, can isolate its focus on containing the opponent's strength, the run, which it failed to do the last time the division counterparts met face to face. Last year in Week 16, Lynch rolled up 134 total yards and a touchdown against the Gold Panners. However, that happened in Seattle. In the rematch, San Fran will get the best of the Beast. Even after last week's misstep, the Niners have still allowed just 3.3 yards per carry and the second-fewest fantasy points to RBs. Lynch is an animal after initial contact, but expect him to find few treats in San Francisco.

Fearless Forecast: 20 carries, 74 rushing yards, 2 receptions, 8 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9.7 fantasy points

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Larry Fitzgerald, Ari, WR (98-percent started)
Matchup: at Min
With Kevin Kolb sidelined by tender ribs for the next several weeks, John Skelton is set to man the controls for sliding 'Zona. Most fanalysts would contend the QB change is a major win for Fitzgerald. Skelton's tunnel vision for the wide receiver is well-documented. When No. 19 has taken first-team reps, a span of 13 starts, he and Fitz have combined for seven touchdowns and 10.5 targets, 5.6 receptions and 90.5 yards per game. Still, it's shortsighted to believe the pair will instantly rekindle their on-field love out of the gate. From a fantasy perspective, the MetroDome doesn't exactly scream 'Romance!' As most are well aware, the Cardinals couldn't protect the pocket from a line of legless basset hounds. Cardinals QBs have been sacked 28 times this year, the most in the NFL. Skelton has a quicker release than Kolb, but he's a fixed object. For Jared Allen and the rest of Minnesota's dogged front, he will look like a freshly cooked goose. If badgered relentlessly, Skelton's chances of connecting with Fitz downfield are limited. Keep in mind, among WRs, only Donnie Avery has surpassed 75 yards against Antoine Winfield and friends this year. In a homecoming of sorts for the Minnesota native, he won't be crowned king.

Fearless Forecast: 5 receptions, 60 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9.8 fantasy points

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Brandon Lloyd, NE, WR (81-percent started)
Matchup: vs. NYJ
For "Gumby," a clash with Antonio Cromartie isn't very appealing. For one, the possibility of unwanted pregnancy is uncomfortably high. And so is the potential to underwhelm statistically. Against receivers with prototype frames, Cromartie usually operates at the highest level. Previously, he locked down Andre Johnson, Michael Crabtree, and, for 3.5 quarters, Reggie Wayne. Overall, he checks in as the eighth-best cover-man according to Pro Football Focus, conceding just a 41.7 catch percentage to assignments. Lloyd bruised his shoulder late last week in Seattle, but returned to a full practice Wednesday. Even though he's close to full strength and possesses freakish athleticism, he could fall victim to the matchup this week. Remember, New England has leaned more heavily on the run this year, ranking No. 1 in rush attempts per game. Given the Jets' shortcomings stopping the run, Stevan Ridley will likely be the centerpiece of the game-plan this week.

Fearless Forecast: 5 receptions, 52 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 8.9 fantasy points

BONUS WEEK 7 LAMES

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TEAM HUEVOS PICKS OF THE WEEK

Each week one fortunate guest prognosticator will have a chance to silence the Noise. Following the rules stated above, participants are asked to submit their "Flames" (1 QB, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, 1 TE, 1 D/ST) by midnight PT Mondays via Twitter @YahooNoise. How large are your stones?

Reader Record: 17-25 (40.5%)

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