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Welcome to Week 4 of the National Football League fantasy division. We have a few game-time decisions and with all of these injuries you never know when something wacky will pop up, so stay tuned to the Rotoworld News Page and also check out our live blog which I’ll be live blogging starting whenever I can roll out of bed Sunday morning.
We also have rankings from Mr. Pat Daugherty, Nick Mensio’s sleeper picks, Jeff Ratcliffe's D/ST Picks, my AFC and NFC Targets and Touches and Evan Silva's detailed look at every game in his Matchup Column. So click on all of those and then copy them down word for word with pen and paper so you don't lose them.
Ravens at Bills
* Ray Rice (hip) was limited in practice and is a game time decision. Since this is an early game we will thankfully know before we have to set our lineups. This is a plus matchup, so even if he does go Bernard Pierce has some flex appeal, but if he doesn’t, he is a top start.
* Marlon Brown is probable and will play.
* Stevie Johnson (hamstring) was limited in practice all week, but is probable and will go. We have him ranked as the 22nd wide receiver this week.
* C.J. Spiller (quad) practiced in full on Friday and is listed as probable. Start him as you normally would.
Cardinals at Buccaneers
* Rashard Mendenhall (toe) practiced in full Thursday and Friday and is probable.
* Larry Fitzgerald (hamstring) was a full participant in practice this week so he’s off the injury radar now.
* Vincent Jackson (ribs) and Mike Williams (hamstring) both practiced, but were limited on Friday. They are listed as questionable, but look like they will play. Unfortunately they did not get much practice time with new quarterback Mike Glennon and it could impact their chemistry in their first game together.
* Tom Crabtree (ankle) is out again.
Steelers at Vikings
* Le’Veon Bell (foot) was a full participant in practice and is listed as probable. He will play, but the number of snaps he receives is still in question.
* Christian Ponder (ribs) is out against the Steelers. Matt Cassel will get the start and will find it difficult to be as bleh as Ponder, but will give it a go.
* Chris Cook (groin) is out for this week, which is a major blow to the Vikings pass defense. Upgrade Big Ben in London.
Giants at Chiefs
* Defensive back Corey Webster (hip) has been ruled out against Kansas City. If Dwayne Bowe were to get back on track, this would be the time to do so.
* Anthony Fasano (knee) and Travis Kelce (knee) both are listed as questionable and may not go.
Colts at Jaguars
* T.Y. Hilton (groin) was held out of practice on Friday for precautionary reasons, but is listed as probable, so should be a full go.
* Ahmad Bradshaw (neck) didn’t practice on Friday and is out. This will give Trent Richardson the lead back duties all to himself in a plus matchup.
* Marcedes Lewis (calf) is listed as probable and will make his season debut.
* Maurice Jones-Drew (ankle) was limited in practice on Friday, but is listed as probable and has a good matchup against the Colts.
* Blaine Gabbert (hand) is probable and will play against the Colts.
Seahawks at Texans
* Max Unger (arm) and Breno Giacomini (knee) are both offensive line starters and are both doubtful for this game. You don’t want to be losing offensive lineman before you face J.J. Watt.
* Andre Johnson (shin) is questionable after being limited in Friday’s practice, but he says he will play and that he’s doing better. He’s a start even in a tough matchup.
* Duane Brown (toe) didn’t practice on Friday and is listed as questionable. He will be a game-time decision and is needed for Matt Schaub to have a decent pocket to throw from.
Bengals at Browns
* BenJarvus Green-Ellis (ankle) was a full participant in practice Friday and is listed as probable. Rookie Giovani Bernard had more snaps than he did last week and that doesn’t look like it will change, so he isn’t a recommended play.
* Leon Hall (hamstring), Dre Kirkpatrick (hamstring), and Reggie Nelson (hamstring) are all listed as doubtful. Upgrade Josh Gordon and Jordan Cameron.
* Josh Gordon (ankle) is listed as probable and is a full go.
Bears at Lions
* Charles Tillman (groin) is listed as questionable and was limited in practice Friday. Even though he won’t be shadowing Calvin Johnson, this is good news for Megatron's prospects.
* Reggie Bush (knee) got another full practice in and is listed as probable. With his involvement in the passing game he’s always a must start.
* Nate Burleson (forearm (pizza)) is out and will be replaced by Ryan Broyles in the starting lineup.
Jets at Titans
* Chris Ivory (hamstring) is out. Bilal Powell will get the majority of the running back snaps.
* Kenny Britt (neck) was limited in practiced and is listed as questionable. It’s looking like he won’t go after coach Munchak was disappointed that he couldn’t do more in practice. Justin Hunter will get a bump in snaps if Britt is out.
Redskins at Raiders
* Terrelle Pryor (concussion) is listed as questionable, but it is starting to look like he has a decent chance to play. He needs to pass one more test before being completely cleared by the team, but reports are optimistic.
* Jordan Reed (quad) is questionable, but looks likely to be inactive.
Eagles at Broncos
* LeSean McCoy (ankle) and Michael Vick (foot) aren’t listed on the injury report after getting nicked up last week.
* Free safety Pat Chung (shoulder) is doubtful. Not that it matters much against Peyton Manning, but the Eagles will need all the help they can get.
* Champ Bailey (foot) was limited in practice this week, but is expected to make his season debut.
Cowboys at Chargers
* Miles Austin (hamstring) is out. Terrance Williams is next on the depth chart and should get the start while Cole Beasley and Dwayne Harris (hip) who practiced on Friday and should go, getting more snaps than usual.
* Malcom Floyd (neck) is out once again.
SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
Patriots at Falcons
* Danny Amendola (groin) and Rob Gronkowski (back) were both limited in practice and are listed as questionable. The Boston Globe is reporting that both are tentatively expected to play, but the late game will make it difficult for fantasy owners to work around their questionable status.
* Brandon Bolden (knee) was limited in practice Friday and is listed as questionable. He has nice upside, but it is difficult to know what coach Belichick will do.
* Roddy White (ankle) was limited in practice Thursday and Friday and says he’s not where he wants to be. This should be the week he plays most of the snaps after playing 47 of 66 last week, but we’ll have to see.
* Julio Jones (knee) continues to be limited in practice and gets the questionable tag, but leads the NFL in receptions and yards, so pay no mind.
MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
Dolphins at Saints
* Lance Moore (wrist) didn’t practice on Friday and is looking iffy for the Monday night tilt. Kenny Stills would see a few more snaps in his absence.
* Mark Ingram (toe) missed practice on Friday and is looking unlikely to play for the second week. Pierre Thomas benefitted from his absence last week.
MY TOUGHEST DECISIONS OF THE WEEK
Andre Johnson vs. Josh Gordon
So we have the veteran stud versus the stud in the making. Johnson gets the tough Seahawks secondary, while Gordon gets a tough Bengals secondary. Johnson had his shin smashed (just think of walking to the bathroom at night and slamming your shin into the nightstand, but a whole bunch worse) and Gordon has had one game where he saw 19 targets, which made for a huge day, but will he see 19 targets against the Bengals?
The old adage, start your studs, seems appropriate here, but with the Browns playing with absolutely no effective running game, they will throw it a ton and Gordon and Jordan Cameron are really the two guys Brian Hoyer is going to throw the ball to. And when you add in the fact that three of the Bengals defensive backs are doubtful for this game, it tips the scales in Gordon's favor. Wish me luck.
SURVIVOR PICK OF THE WEEK
I took last week off and picked Seattle over Jacksonville. This week we have a little tougher slate of games. The most obvious pick for me (which is often the wrong pick!) looks to be Denver over Philadelphia.
Peyton Manning is in such a groove I don’t see how a team with the Eagles’ defense can come into Mile High and compete. I love the Eagles offense, but the Broncos are giving up 1.7 yards per carry to running backs. No, that’s not a typo. LeSean McCoy will get his, but Manning will probably have three touchdowns by then.
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