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Bringin' the Noise: The healer

Brad Evans
Yahoo Sports

Watch the Noise, alongside fellow Yahoo! expert Brandon Funston and Rotowire's Chris Liss , answer your pressing lineup questions for a full hour every NFL Sunday on the two-time Emmy nominated webcast "Fantasy Football Live" at 9 AM PT/11 AM CT/Noon ET.

Chicago's Kyle Orton is a chameleon.

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Obi One-Eight doesn't fear teams with dark helmets
(US Presswire)
He's an environmental activist, conservationist, legendary liver punisher, neckbeard pioneer, night club derriere detective, cougar wrangler and an NFL quarterback. In other words, he's a liberal "Joe Six-Pack."

Orton's latest guise: he's a healer.

Over the past week, the stiff breeze felt throughout the Windy City hasn't been caused by natural meteorological influences but rather air expelled from the noses of depressed Cubs and White Sox fans.

In a city ravaged by the unfriendly baseball gods, Orton's unforeseen rise from conservative game manager to statistical colossus has bandaged the excruciating rawhide wounds. Not to mention, he's also cleansed Bears nation of the stains left by Rex Grossman.

Since Week 3, Obi One-Eight has carved up opponents with Jedi precision. During that span he's completed nearly 63 percent of his passes for 267 passing yards per contest, while also averaging 10 rushing yards and 2.3 touchdowns per game, good for 22.3 fantasy points per game in traditional scoring formats – which ranks No.1 at his position.

Amazingly, Orton is on pace for 22 touchdowns, one less air strike than Eli Manning accumulated last year. For an organization that has produced exactly two 20-TD quarterbacks in its illustrious history (Erik Kramer in 1995 and Rex Grossman in 2006), it's almost unfathomable to think Orton, who currently ranks 14th in FPPG among signal-callers, could finish the fantasy year in the QB top 15 or, impossibly, the top-10. It's apocalyptic, really.

Believe it.

The fourth-year slinger has always had excellent baseline tools to be successful at the professional level, which may explain why the Bears front office didn't pursue another quarterback in this year's draft. His towering 6-foot-4 height, needle-threading accuracy and above-average athleticism are ideal physical attributes for a pocket passer. This year his cerebral maturation has helped enhance the physical gifts. Largely due to his studious approach, Orton's coverage reads, pocket presence and overall decision-making have flourished. Distributing the ball crisply and precisely, he's turned Chicago's slew of questionable targets into viable weapons, routinely squeezing passes into tight spaces, especially in the red zone. Inside the 20 this season, he's posted a sparkling 5:1 TD:INT split. No wonder Bears offensive coordinator Ron Turner feels the 25-year-old's confidence is soaring. Per the Chicago Tribune:

"I think he's playing with a lot of confidence right now and throwing the ball better than he has any time since I've been around him. He's just reading things and throwing the ball with a lot of confidence. No question when your quarterback is throwing well, you have a lot of confidence in him. And if the guy is making plays, it definitely opens things up. Right now, with the way he's playing, we'll call whatever we think we need to call."

Orton expressed similar remarks when asked about his noticeable advancements. From the Chicago Sun-Times:

"I'm happy with how I'm progressing. I feel like I'm getting better every week, and I think the offense is getting better every week."

Sure a quarterback blessed with the brain of Grossman and the body of Joe Paterno could rack 300 yards against Detroit, but Orton did tally three scores against an Eagles defense in Week 4, the same unit that doused red-hot Jason Campbell (176 yards, 0 TDs) last week.

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Stare into Orton's droopy eyes and you're sure to find dancing Jack Daniels bottles a winner
(US Presswire)

So should the 57 percent-owned Orton really be counted on as a starter in 12-team leagues over the remainder of the season?

In the plainest language the Noise knows: "You betcha!" (wink)

Including this week's tilt in Atlanta, Orton has only one unfavorable game remaining, Week 10 versus Tennessee. His other scheduled matchups (at Atl, Min (2), Det, GB (2), at StL, Jac, NO and at Hou) have yielded a combined 236.1 passing yards and 1.3 touchdowns per game to quarterbacks this season. In light of this information, it's certainly possible he could finish the '08 regular season with 22-25 touchdowns, a similar total Donovan McNabb (Pace: 19 TDs), Jason Campbell (19) and, unbelievably, Peyton Manning (20) could finish with.

Even without the services of top receiving weapon Brandon Lloyd, the Bearded One will shatter empty Jack Daniels bottles over the heads of Atlanta's amateurish corners in Week 6. Brent Grimes and Chris Houston, along with their secondary teammates, have surrendered 231.4 passing yards and 1.8 touchdowns per game to QBs, equal to the ninth-most fantasy points allowed. With Matt Forte leading the charge by air and ground, Devin Hester emerging as a viable all-around weapon and Greg Olsen finally finding his niche in the offense, Orton should amass a minimum of 230 passing yards and 1-2 scores.

Atlanta, along with Chicago's future foes, better fear the beard.

Week 6 Fearless Forecast: 23-35, 248 passing yards, 2 passing touchdowns, 0 interceptions, 10 rushing yards

Here are this week's flames, lames and stars of video games:

Each week the Noise highlights five somewhat obscure, unobvious names who he believes are destined for flame madness or lame sadness. In honor of waiver wire hero Ron Dayne's legendary three-game dominance late in '06, the "Shocker Special" segment spotlights one player owned in less than a third of Yahoo! leagues who is poised for instant greatness. The Noise, an accountability advocate, will tally his hits and misses and post the results, whether genius or moronic, each week using the scoring system listed at the end of the lames segment.

*BNRK = Big Noise weekly position ranking
*Y!% = Percentage owned, started in Yahoo! Plus leagues

Week 6 Fantasy Flames
Player Team Pos Opp BNRK Y!%
Matt Schaub
10 73, 23
Lowdown: We can only assume the viral infection that forced Schaub out of action last week was caused by excessive Volcano Taco consumption. However, the nauseous feelings he, along with several thousand Texans fans, felt was unmistakably spurred by Sage Rosenfels. Healthy and prepared to get his club off the schnide, Schaub should notch borderline top-10 numbers versus a Miami secondary that has picked off opposing quarterbacks only once while yielding seven passing touchdowns. With All-Pro teammate Andre Johnson back to his old dominating self, the Houston signal barker plans to target his premiere downfield option often. Per the Houston Chronicle, "He's a playmaker on our team. He creates so many things for a defense to prepare for that any time we can get him the football and get him involved in the offense it's going to give us a better chance to win." The Fins have been perplexed by long bombs this season, yielding four 40-yard pass plays, the second-most in the NFL. Given Schaub's adequate arm and desire to feed Andre 3000 the rock, the two should connect on numerous explosive pass plays. Start him with confidence in 12-team leagues.
Fearless Forecast: 24-36, 263 passing yards, 2 touchdowns, 1 interception
Willis McGahee
15 96, 55
Lowdown: Baltimore's theme song this week against Indy is "Return of the Mack." Hobbled by sore ribs last week, McGahee painfully plodded his way to 64 rushing yards on 22 carries (2.9 YPC). Compared to the "Freight Train" Le'Ron McClain, McGahee is more Amtrak. Instead of barreling his way through tacklers, he slashes around them. Because the Colts have conceded 5.0 yards per carry and 214.6 total yards per game, equal to the third-most fantasy points allowed to rushers, the boastful Raven should have something to gloat about. Again without Bob Sanders, Indy will be outmuscled, overpowered and humiliated by Cam Cameron's smash-mouth game plan. Similar to what Gary Kubiak tried to do last week versus the Colts, look for John Harbaugh to follow the Anti-Manning Manifesto. In other words, he'll want to control the clock in an attempt to keep the eight-time Pro Bowler off the field. Although McGahee was a limited participant in practice Wednesday, he should be counted on for a minimum of 20 touches on Sunday.
Fearless Forecast: 23 carries, 103 rushing yards, 2 receptions, 11 receiving yards, 1 touchdown
Justin Fargas
17 69, 18
Lowdown: Bel Biv DeVoe once poetically warned us to "never trust a big butt and a smile." However in Fargas' case, his hope for fruitful Week 6 fantasy totals centers on following five enlarged hams. Back in the starting lineup after a three game hiatus, the Raiders' RB front man claims he's still operating at less than 100 percent, but based on Tom Cable's optimistic words he appears to be a safe play. With Darren McFadden still plagued by lingering turf toe soreness, Fargas will likely tote at least 60 percent of the workload. Cable wants to emphasize a more balanced approach, which, given 'Nawlins' troubles defending the pass (257 passing YPG allowed), should benefit the Silver and Black ground attack. The Saints shockingly suffocated Adrian Peterson Monday night, limiting "All Day" to a miniscule 32 yards on 21 carries (1.5 YPC). However, despite the masterful performance, this is still a defense that has given up 4.5 yards per carry to backs this season and is minus their best interior defender, Sedrick Ellis. New offensive coordinator Greg Knapp will undoubtedly call several aggressive vertical plays to stretch the Saints, but ultimately he'll have to rely on his team's strength, powering the football, to move the chains. Label Fargas, who has averaged 5.2 yards per carry this year, an upside Flex play in 12-team and deeper leagues.
Fearless Forecast: 18 carries, 78 rushing yards, 3 receptions, 13 receiving yards, 1 touchdown
Reggie Brown
18 78, 44
Lowdown: Based on his underachieving ways, many raucous Eagles and fantasy fans would gladly drop trowel in front of and/or hurl breakfast buddies at Brown. Hampered by a bedeviling hamstring injury, the enigmatic wideout missed two games and was a non-factor in Week 3. However, in his past two contests, he's averaging five receptions and 81.5 yards per game. Rejuvenated and determined to get his team back on track after last week's loss to Washington, Brown should again be a key figure in the Eagles aerial attack. San Francisco's man-to-man defense has allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to wideouts this season, including five 70-yard receivers and four scores in their past two games. With Brian Westbrook ailing, look for Andy Reid to install several four-receiver sets in an attempt to bewilder the Niners and generate space for his wideouts. Anticipate Donovan McNabb to square Brown in the crosshairs a minimum of 8-10 times.
Fearless Forecast: 6 receptions, 89 receiving yards, 1 touchdown
Devin Hester
24 47, 27
Lowdown: No longer just an electric return man, Hester has developed into a certifiable WR3 in 12-team leagues. Over the past two weeks, the diminutive speedster has snagged eight passes for 93 yards and two touchdowns. His improved underneath routes, coverage reads and in-game adjustments have made him especially useful in the red zone. That, added with Kyle Orton's stark advancements, has launched Hester into wide receiver respectability. With Brandon Lloyd expected to be inactive for this week's fracas with the Falcons, the former "U" standout will again see a target surge. Because Atlanta has yielded fourteen 20-yard pass plays, the sixth-most in the NFL, look for Orton to air mail a strike or two to Hester downfield. Still not convinced? The Falcons have also allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to wideouts this season. Oh, and Hester feels his fruitless return streak is about to end at "any moment." Activate him as a WR3 or Flex play in all 12-team leagues.
Fearless Forecast: 5 receptions, 77 receiving yards, 1 touchdown

Other Flame candidates: Jason Campbell (vs. StL), Le'Ron McClain (vs. Ind), Fred Taylor (at Den), Michael Pittman (vs. Jac), Antwaan Randle El (vs. StL), Bernard Berrian (vs. Det), Muhsin Muhammad (at TB)

Shocker Special of the Week
Player Team Pos Opp BNRK Y!%
Brandon Stokley
19 30, 18
Lowdown: Unless dynamite rookie Eddie Royal's injured ankle improves significantly before Sunday's tilt with Jacksonville, he's likely to be very limited or inactive. Yes, Darrell Jackson will see increased action, but the slot machine would benefit most from the rookie's absence. With Royal out for much of the second half last week versus Tampa Bay, the slippery 32-year-old grabbed a team-high six passes for 52 yards and a touchdown. This week, anticipate a bigger payoff. The Jags have conceded seventeen 20-yard pass plays, the second-most in the NFL and the 13th-most fantasy points to receivers. Corner Rashean Mathis is an elite draper, but with his attention focused on containing Brandon Marshall, Stokley will take advantage of soft coverage between the hashmarks. Targeted a healthy 6.4 times this season, Stokley should compile roughly 8-10 looks en route to a top-20 tally. Insert him into your lineup as a WR3 in all 12-team leagues.
Fearless Forecast: 7 receptions, 83 receiving yards, 1 touchdown

Other potential Shockers: Leon Washington (vs. Cin), Ladell Betts (vs. StL), Darren Sproles (vs. NE), Javon Walker (at NO), Craig Davis (vs. NE)

Week 6 Fantasy Lames
Player Team Pos Opp BNRK Y!%
Philip Rivers
14 100, 68
Lowdown: Raging Rivers, the seventh-ranked QB in fantasy, will be more of a tranquil brook this week against New England. His lethal weapons, LaDainian Tomlinson (toe), Antonio Gates (hip) and Chris Chambers (ankle) are all operating at well under 100 percent. Chambers, who said Wednesday his wrenched ankle is "feeling better," is the biggest question mark of the three and will likely be a game-time decision. Even with a gimpy Chambers, Rivers' outlook is ominous. Beelzechick is a genius game planner who will likely send several blitz and stunt packages to mystify the Chargers QB. As the emotionless coach told the Boston Globe Wednesday, "I have a lot of respect for him (Rivers). His accuracy, his decision-making and overall production has continued to improve." On the season, New England has yielded a mere 185.5 passing yards and five air scores, equal to the eighth-fewest fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks. Count on Kyle Orton (at Atl), Jason Campbell (vs. StL) and Gus Frerotte (vs. Det) to have more profitable days.
Fearless Forecast: 16-28, 198 passing yards, 1 touchdown, 2 interceptions
Michael Turner
18 100, 93
Lowdown: Turner will fail to ignite the afterburners this week against Chicago. Although motivated to face his hometown team, an organization that believed he lacked a special quality coming out of college, the former NIU Husky has a tall task against a ravenous Bears trench unit. Versus formidable ground competition, save Detroit (Ind, Car, TB, Phi), they've yet to allow a rusher to eclipse 80 yards in a game. Overall, they've held plowshares to 3.7 yards per carry, 104.2 total yards per game and four total touchdowns equal to the ninth-fewest fantasy points conceded. At full throttle, Turner is an unstoppable rolling beer keg. However, given the Bears strong four-man front and blitz-crazed ways, the Falcons rusher will likely remain untapped. Yes, it's extremely difficult to demote fantasy's No. 1 runner but, given the unfriendly matchup, he could finish with maddening totals.
Fearless Forecast: 19 carries, 67 rushing yards, 1 reception, 5 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns
Steve Slaton
23 98, 88
Lowdown: Slaton is the central character in many Noise mantasies, but this week he'll be a fantasy Boogeyman. The Slasher has rapidly ascended into the upper-echelon of virtual pigskin producers. His 112 total yards per game, 4 touchdowns and 19.2 FPPG average in standard leagues ranks second only to "Wildcat" Ronnie Brown over the past three weeks. Houston's offensive line continues to show improvement, and with Schaub back behind center the Texans should move the ball successfully through the air. However, the Dolphins are no pushovers in the trenches. On the year, they've surrendered just 3.4 yards per carry, 98.3 total yards per game and two scores to rushers, equal to the third-fewest fantasy points allowed. Slaton is a multi-dimensional back who can beat you in a variety of ways, but the Fins' stunt-heavy 3-4 defense will generate too much interior penetration. Keep him active in the Flex in all 12-team leagues, especially those that score PPR, but anticipate the Slasher to wield a dull knife.
Fearless Forecast: 16 carries, 62 rushing yards, 4 receptions, 19 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns
Calvin Johnson
25 99, 80
Lowdown: Over the past two weeks, Megatron's efforts could be classified as scrap-heap worthy. In those disappointing contests (vs. Chi and SF) he's caught only six passes for 56 yards. Johnson, an athletic marvel who has shown mental improvements in all facets of the game, at first glance is a favorable play against a Minnesota secondary that has historically struggled. But the Vikings defense is no longer an aerial slouch. In five games, they've yielded just two touchdowns to wideouts. With the Lions signal caller situation in complete disarray, its possible Dan Orlovsky, who has posted an atrocious 48.9 career completion percentage, could be handed the reigns of an embarrassing offense. Purple clad defensive end Jared Allen has yet to have a monstrous game. However, with the inexperienced Orlovsky likely starting and the fact Detroit QBs have been sacked 16 times this season, his day in the spotlight will come this week. Without a consistent ground game to open up the pass, and given Jon Kitna's grim playing prospects (back), Johnson will underperform yet again.
Fearless Forecast: 4 receptions, 37 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns
Jerricho Cotchery
27 99, 71
Lowdown: Even if Cotchery strapped Brett Favre's festering fowl around his waist, it would attract, not ward off Bengals. Despite a handful of injuries to its secondary, Cincinnati's base 4-3 has performed astonishingly well against the pass. Through five games, former Super Bowl MVP Dexter Jackson and his cohorts have yet to yield a 70-yard receiver. Overall, they've surrendered just the seventh-fewest fantasy points to wideouts. As good as they've been vertically, Marvin Lewis' bunch has struggled greatly in the trenches. Although Favre is coming off one of his most historic efforts, Mangenious will likely relegate the gunslinger to a managerial role this week in an attempt to pound Cincy between the tackles. The Bengals typically employ zone coverage, which should net Cotchery a fair amount of receptions, but expect a minimal yardage return. Keep him active in deep PPR leagues, but 10-team leagues should lean on sounder alternatives – e.g. Bobby Engram (vs. GB), Bernard Berrian (vs. Det) or Brandon Stokley (vs. Jac).
Fearless Forecast: 5 receptions, 52 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns

Other Lame candidates: Peyton Manning (vs. Bal), Joseph Addai (vs. Bal), Edgerrin James (vs. Dal), Earnest Graham (vs. Car), Kellen Winslow (vs. NYG), Lance Moore (vs. Oak)

QBs: 15+ fantasy points
RBs: 10+ fantasy points
WRs: 7+ fantasy points
TEs: 6+ fantasy points
D/ST: 10+ fantasy points
*Scoring system:
4 PTs/Pass TD
1 PT/20 pass yards
6 PTs/Rush-Rec TD
1 PT/10 Rush-Rec yards
-1 PT/INT or FL
W: Steve Slaton = 21 Points
W: Ben Roethlisberger = 27 Points
W: Le'Ron McClain = 12 Points
L: Warrick Dunn = 8 Points
L: Bobby Engram = 6 Points
L: Vincent Jackson = 5 Points
L: Kevin Jones (SS) = 4 Points
Week 5 Flame Record: 3-4
Shocker Specials: 2-3
Season Total: 18-16 = 52.9%
W: Jason Campbell = 7 Points
W: Marshawn Lynch = 5 Points
W: Larry Johnson = 0 Points
L: Roddy White = 19 Points
L: Andre Johnson = 19 Points
Week 5 Lame Record: 3-2
Season Total: 15-10 = 60.0%

Do you ever question why on earth you're not a fantasy expert? This is the place for you to vent your thoughts, tirades and frustrations. Can you bring the noise?

Brad, just wanted to comment on the loser, I mean, lawyer that had some beef (with cheese) about your column – (Brandon from Texas). I think your writing is entertaining: punchy, witty, sprinkled with some good fantasy advice. I'm an avid reader; I get a good laugh every time. As for the 'good' counselor – here's an old as dirt jab that still applies: go chase an ambulance. Use your I-got-a-legal-degree-from- a-community-college-on-a-table-tennis-scholarship for something other than online smack where you don't pass the Bar.Chris, Indianapolis, Ind.

Brad, I just wanted to say that I absolutely love your writing. I would also say that you are hilarious. I read that comment by Brandon from Texas, and that whole dodging his potato peeler rebuttal was top of the line. Keep up the good work!Lance, Pittsburgh, Pa.

Hey "Big Noise," just gotta say your prediction with Roddy White was so wrong and so horrible. I benched Roddy this week due to what you said in sit/start WRs and in a few of your other columns and I gotta say that was probably the worst prediction I have ever seen you make. I think the beard is going to your head and you should shave it off immediately before the whole fantasy community is up in arms over your bad calls. Thanks a ton for the great picks!Joey, Kitchener, Canada

Noise: The Noise's deplorable picks usually parallel blown Ed Hochuli calls. Whenever the Swoll of Stripes or his crew blatantly misses a critical penalty (e.g. the face mask on Reggie Bush Monday) the Noise fantastically misfires on one of his "Lame" selections the same week.

Coming into last week, Charles Woodson had played brilliantly against his assignments, limiting them to three receptions and 43 yards per game. With Matt Ryan playing in only his third road game, I fully expected White to struggle. He did for a half, but by the time the Pack made adjustments, he had already snatched eight passes for 132 yards and a touchdown.

Joey Woey, you have every right to project your questionable decision-making onto the Noise, but remember, there's only one person to blame in this scenario. Cue MJ

If you want to make your fantasy world a better place, just look at yourself and make that … change! Na na na!

Right now, Lucifer is plotting creative ways to screw fantasy owners
(US Presswire)
Hey Brad, do you consider Ryan Torain future man-crush material? Selvin Young has a great yards per carry average, so I don't see him supplanting him. Could he take over goal-line/short yardage carries for Pittman? Then again, this is Mike Shanahan so he could give Torain 20 carries a game and waive Selvin Young. Your thoughts?Brian, Salem, Mass.

Noise: It's only appropriate that a question involving Lucifer Shanahan would come from the hotbed of colonial witchery. As we're all very aware, Shanny is the epitome of evil. His treacherous ways have driven many, including the Noise, to the bottle several times.

Yes, Torain is someone to acquire and stash promptly in all 12-team and deeper leagues. Denver's zone-blocking system, which has churned out a 1,000-yard rushers in 13 of 14 years Shanahan has been at the helm, has had just two 100-yard runners in its past 17 games. In the Broncos revamped Patriots-styled offense, the iconic running game has fallen victim to Jay Cutler's arm. Young has been productive with limited touches, but it appears Shanahan doesn't trust him to carry more than 15 times per game. Torain could provide the ground spark Lucifer is searching for.

Per Jim Armstrong of the Denver Post, Torain is larger than Young and speedier than Michael Pittman. His powerful frame (6-foot-1, 222-pounds), strong initial burst and wide-eyed vision are ideal characteristics for Denver's one-cut-and-go philosophy. Prior to April's draft, scouts ironically compared him to former Mile High soldier Mike Anderson.

Torain (10 percent owned in Y! Plus leagues) returned to practice this week and should see action November 2 against Miami. It may take him a couple of weeks to round into form, but given Shanny's admiration for the youngster and Denver's favorable schedule Weeks 10-14, minus the Jets (at Cle, at Atl, Oak, at NYJ, KC), he could develop into an impact Flex or RB2 in deeper formats, especially in the first round of the fantasy playoffs (WK 14).

Arizona Defense as a "solid buy" this week? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!Andy, San Antonio, TX

Brad, you curiously have the Arizona Cardinals as your D/ST pickup of the week. Did you happen to see how bad they were last Sunday? I could have thrown 6 TDs. Sir, it's time to put the crack pipe down …Frank, Turnersville, NJ

Noise: Let Andy and Frank's oversights be a lesson to all of you: In fantasy, always expect the unexpected. As detailed in last week's Pickups, 'Zona was recommended for three reasons: 1) The Cards had played exceptionally well at home in recent years, 2) Entering the week they had stymied the run (3.5 YPC allowed), the Bills strength and 3) The effects of Buffalo's cross-country travels would prove costly. Yes, things could've turned out differently if Trent Edwards weren't knocked silly by Adrian Wilson in the first quarter, but I doubt it. Sometimes in an illogical league, justified reasoning actually does prevail.

For as much admonishment I received for plugging the Desert Birds, they finished with 14 fantasy points in standard leagues, ranking them fifth overall among defenses in Week 5.

Roethlisberger? Maybe you haven't noticed that the Steelers O-Line stinks and they're running game is way banged up. Also Big Ben is a 'lil banged up himself. Jags at home at night are gonna eat Ben up. I'm not buying it. Your advice has only led to early season losses for me. Featuring Slaton, ooh, what a great call by a so-called fantasy expert. Everyone and their mom knows about Slaton, if you would've said something about him in August I would be a 'lil impressed (btw, I drafted him in August in the final round) In fact I seriously can't believe they pay you guys. Get me a job there. I'll throw you a bone, easy one, Jake Delhomme. He will kick ass this week.Alex, Washington D.C.

Noise: Only a stone's throw away from the White House it makes sense why Alex, whose first name is surely followed by P. Keaton, would send an email littered with blatant lies and inaccurate forecasts. To set the record straight, let's fact check Alex's email. Think of it as the Noise's version of "gotcha" fantasy journalism:

1) Alex's statement: "Maybe you haven't noticed that the Steelers O-Line stinks and they're running game is way banged up … Jags at home at night are gonna eat Ben up."

Big Ben breakdown from last week's Noise: "This is the week Roethlisberger vents his early season frustrations. Because the injury imp has swallowed Steelers running backs whole, Roethlisberger will spearhead an aerial bombardment in Jacksonville … Fearless Forecast: 21-35, 236 passing yards, 3 touchdowns, 1 interception"

Fact: Pittsburgh's porous rushing attack combined with Jacksonville's horrendous pass defense propelled Big Ben to a season-high 26 completions for 309 yards and three touchdowns and one interception.

2) Alex's statement: "Everyone and their mom knows about Slaton, if you would've said something about him in August I would be a 'lil impressed."

Noise Roto Arcade entry about Slaton from August 19: "In Houston's muddied backfield, the third-round pick out of West Virginia might be the only one wearing rubber galoshes. Owned in just 17 percent of Y! leagues and going on average at pick 200.1 according to Mock Draft Central, the diminutive dynamo will likely be waiver/late-round gold."

Fact: If the moms Alex referred to were regular readers of the Noise's preseason coverage then, yes, they too realized Slaton's fantasy potential in August.

3) Alex's statement: "I'll throw you a bone, easy one, Jake Delhomme. He will kick ass this week."

Fact: Versus KC, the Carolina quarterback finished with 236 yards, two touchdowns and one interception, the sixth-best output of the week. A commendable forecast but it wasn't exactly of the "kick ass" variety. Call it borderline Kardashian.

Sorry Mr. P. Keaton, but we currently don't have any openings, even 'lil ones, in the Y! Fantasy department right now.

Each week one lucky aspiring fantasy prognosticator is chosen to go toe-to-toe against the Noise. If you want to be a guest "expert" submit your flames, lames (QB, 2 RB, 2 WR/TE) and shocker special (any position) along with a valid email address here no later than midnight central time on Tuesdays. Oh, and please, no long dissertations to justify your picks. All that's required are your player selections and projections. Winners earn a league spot to compete against yours truly next season. Good luck!

Week 6 contestant: Zhen from Shanghai, China

Gus Frerotte, Min (vs. Det): 225 passing yards, 2 passing touchdowns, 1 interception
Thomas Jones, NYJ (vs. Cin): 20 carries, 99 rushing yards, 1 touchdown
Deuce McAllister, NO (vs. Oak): 12 carries, 60 rushing yards, 1 touchdown
Vincent Jackson, SD (vs. NE): 6 receptions, 95 receiving yards, 2 touchdowns
Antwaan Randle El, Was (vs. StL): 5 receptions, 65 receiving yards, 1 touchdown

Shocker Special:
Indianapolis D/ST (vs. Bal): 4 sacks, 2 interceptions, 1 fumble recovery, 13 points allowed

JT O'Sullivan, SF (vs. Phi): 170 passing yards, 1 touchdown, 2 interceptions
Darren McFadden, Oak (at NO): 14 carries, 60 rushing yards, 0 touchdowns
Steven Jackson, StL (at Was): 18 carries, 70 rushing yards, 0 touchdowns, 1 fumble lost
Brandon Marshall, Den (vs. Jac): 4 receptions, 55 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns
Antonio Gates, SD (vs. NE): 3 receptions, 35 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns

Week 5 Results: Bill from Indonesia
Flames: 3-3, 50.0% (W - Steve Slaton, Visanthe Shiancoe, Kyle Orton (SS); L -Brian Griese, Jonathan Stewart, Lance Moore)
Lames: 4-1, 80% (W - Donovan McNabb, Larry Johnson, Maurice Jones-Drew, Santana Moss; L - Larry Fitzgerald)

Noisers YTD - Flames: 15-15, 50.0%; Lames: 14-11, 56.0%; Shocker Special: 4-1, 80%

Challenge Winners: (Brian from Dallas, Noah from Kansas City, Bill from Indonesia)

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