This weeks starts and sits include some old favorites ready to return to form and some new kids establishing themselves on the fantasy block.
Marc Bulger, QB Rams: Welcome back to the land of fantasy significance, Mr. Bulger. The Rams leader threw for 304 yards and a touchdown against the Patriots last week, taking advantage of the emergence of rookie receiver Donnie Avery and the more aggressive style of head coach Jim Haslett. In his career, Bulger has thrown 15 TD passes and averaged 267.6 yards in 10 games against Arizona, including at least one TD pass in each of the 10 games.
Matt Ryan, QB, Falcons: Last week's game in Philadelphia was supposed to be a hiccup in the development of the rookie quarterback, but Ryan responded with his second-straight big fantasy day, throwing for 277 yards and two TDs (with two interceptions) against one of the league's top defenses. This week he's looking at a middle-of-the-road Raiders passing defense that has been vulnerable to big passing days by the league's better quarterbacks (Drew Brees, Jay Cutler). Ryan and his receiving corps, including Roddy White, Michael Jenkins and Harry Douglas, might find out that they can be mentioned in that conversation.
Willis McGahee, RB, Ravens: Just when fantasy owners (including yours truly) were sprinkling dirt on him, McGahee has a thrust himself back into the forefront of fantasy runners, ranking eighth in rushing yards over the last two weeks. This week is a rematch of a Week 3 contest in which McGahee ran for 64 yards and a TD, splitting carries with Le'Ron McClain (66 yards, two TDs). McGahee's carries have been rising and he's recaptured his clear lead in the Baltimore backfield. Be surprised if he doesn't approach 100 yards.
Fred Taylor, RB, Jaguars: We're going out on a limb here a little since Taylor has been a non-factor since gaining 121 yards against the Colts in Week 3 and suffering a concussion in Week 6. But look for Jack Del Rio to get him back on track and into the end zone against the Bengals, who will have their hands full with the two-headed monster the Jags can put on the field.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis, RB, Patriots: The former practice player has crossed the goal line two straight weeks filling in for the decimated Pats backfield. With Sammy Morris and LaMont Jordan expected to be out again against the Colts, Green-Ellis will get the call again, splitting carries with Kevin Faulk while getting the ball inside the five. He's not likely to have a big day in yardage, but a two-TD day is not out of the question.
Kevin Walter, WR, Texans: Let's see: Roddy White, Larry Fitzgerald, Santana Moss, Chris Chambers and ... Kevin Walter? The Texans second receiver is in a 10-way tie with some of the games biggest names for the most touchdown catches with five. The two biggest receiving games this season against Minnesota's secondary came by second-fiddles Anthony Gonzalez (137 yards) and Devery Henderson (104 yards) which bodes well for Walter.
Kevin Curtis, WR, Eagles: Curtis made his much anticipated return from sports hernia surgery last week by catching three balls for 45 yards against the Falcons. The Eagles leading receiver last season with 1,110 yards and six TD grabs has reclaimed his starting job and will benefit greatly from the emergence of DeSean Jackson on the other side of the field. This week provides a very favorable matchup against the Seahawks, who've let the less than-Pro Bowl collection of Isaac Bruce, Antonio Bryant, Lee Evans and Domenick Hixon all go over 100-yards this year.
Tyler Thigpen, QB, Chiefs: We're assuming that the only way you'd play the Chiefs third stringer is if you were in the most dire of situations. If you need a quarterback this week, disregard Thigpen's huge day against the Jets (280 yards, two TDs) because DerrickBrooks, Cato June and the Bucs will tee off on a Chiefs squad who'll be Larry Johnson-less yet again.
Dominic Rhodes, RB, Colts: All indications are that Joseph Addai will return to the Colts starting lineup, relegating Rhodes and his nine total carries for 31 yards back to bench duty.
Ryan Grant, RB, Packers: Among the top 25 players in terms of carries this season, Grant's one touchdown ranks dead last. Following three straight solid games signaling his return to fantasy usefulness, he should come back down to earth this week against the run stuffers of the unbeaten Titans.