The debate rages on about who is the best weapon in football. Is it the flashy quarterback who lofts deep touchdown passes or is it the dynamic backfield option that always seems to have the ball in his hands? For that matter, what about that receiver that always seems to be doing some type of end zone dance? In what follows we will attempt to answer the question of who is the most valuable fantasy player at each position in our weekly column dealing with the Player Rater Tool.
What is Player Rater tool you ask? It is an emotionless, statistically driven model that takes into account your leagues rules and tells you which players are performing at the highest level. For the sake of the analysis that follows, here are the "rules" that we will be using.
Four points: Touchdown passFour points: Rushing or receiving touchdownOne point: Per 25 yards passingOne point: Per 10 yards rushing or receivingThree points: Per field goalOne point: Per extra point
Drew Brees -- 161.8 points
Brees has made eight starts this season and is averaging 320.4 yards per game, having thrown for less than 320 yards just twice.
Kurt Warner -- 161.5 points
The streak is up to 7-straight weeks with at least two touchdown passes while he has tossed just two interceptions over the past four games.
Philip Rivers -- 158.3 points
Though he has made just eight appearances, Rivers is already just three touchdown passes from tying his single season high of 22.
Aaron Rodgers -- 155.7 points
Rodgers is fifth in the NFL with a 95.3 QB Rating, a number that leaps to 126.7 on third downs (78 passing attempts).
Jay Cutler -- 155.4 points
The past three games haven't been pretty for the Broncos star as he has thrown for less than 195 yards twice while tossing six interceptions versus just five scores.
Donovan McNabb -- 136.2 points
On third down plays with less than three yards to go, McNabb is 12-for-14 with three scores for a 125.9 QB Rating.
Peyton Manning -- 134.1 points
Though the numbers don't really jump off the page considering some of his past wonderful performances, Manning is still on pace for 24 touchdowns and over 4,100-yards passing.
Brett Favre -- 133.9 points
What the heck happened? After a fast start Favre has floundered of late with just three touchdowns and a whopping eight interceptions the past four weeks.
Tony Romo -- 124.3 points
In his brief career, Romo has enjoyed more success at home with 41 touchdowns in 19 games versus 28 scores in 17 road games. He hopes to return in Week 11.
Matt Schaub -- 123.9 points
Will likely miss a month with an injured MCL that ended a streak of four-straight games with at least 265 yards passing (he finished with 139 yards on 16 passes in Week 9).
Clinton Portis -- 142.5 points
Though he lost his 120-yard rushing streak at five games (51 yards), he caught seven passes in the outing, which matched his total from the previous five games.
Marion Barber -- 120.9 points
In three of his past four outings he has failed to score a rushing touchdown or eclipse 75-yards in the contest.
Frank Gore -- 114.0 points
Despite being eighth in the NFL in yards (629), Gore is 10th in carries (136) and has only one game with at least 20-carries (27 in Week 3).
Adrian Peterson -- 112.8 points
Four straight 20-carry efforts have led to three consecutive outings of at least 111 yards.
Chris Johnson -- 111.9 points
After not scoring a rushing touchdown in his first three games, Johnson has scored five times on the ground in his last five games.
Matt Forte -- 110.9 points
Though he is averaging 80.1 yards per game, Forte's average of 3.8 yards per carry just happens to be the same mark as the career total of previously banished Cedric Benson.
Michael Turner -- 104.5 points
Five times Turner has carried the ball 20 times. Four times he has recorded at least 100 yards.
Brandon Jacobs -- 99.1 points
In four seasons, Jacobs yards per carry average just keeps improving (2.6, 4.4, 5.0 and 5.2 in 2008).
Ronnie Brown -- 97.6 points
After back-to-back 110-plus yard outings in Weeks 3 and 5 (Week 4 was a bye), Brown has averaged just 45 yards a game on the ground the past four games.
LaDainian Tomlinson -- 96.6 points
Though he had his first 100-yard rushing game in four weeks in Week 8, LT hasn't scored a rushing touchdown in 4-straight games and in six of eight games he has failed to reach the end zone on a carry.
Andre Johnson -- 95.4 points
In four games under the sun he has 24 receptions for 310 yards, while he has caught 36 passes for 524 yards in four games under a roof.
Larry Fitzgerald -- 94.2 points
Fitzgerald has scored four of his five touchdowns in Cardinals victories.
Roddy White -- 93.5 points
White tends to "get his" early with 30 receptions for 503 yards before halftime and just 18 grabs for 230 yards thereafter.
Greg Jennings -- 92.4 points
After a stretch of six games with at least four receptions, Jennings has been held to just three in each of the past two Packers games.
Calvin Johnson -- 92.1 points
With a yards after the catch mark of 7.6, Johnson is the only receiver over 7.5 who has caught at least 20 passes (he has 37).
Santana Moss -- 89.9 points
In two of the past four weeks Moss has been held to less than 25 yards receiving, while he has scored twice in the other two games.
Anquan Boldin -- 87.2 points
In two games against AFC opponents Boldin has been huge with 16 receptions for 259 yards and four touchdowns.
Lee Evans -- 82.0 points
In three games against the NFC he has eight receptions. In five games against the AFC he has hauled in 27 receptions.
Bernard Berrian -- 78.4 points
Berrian is really on his game right now with scores in four straight games, a stretch in which he has also produced at least 81 yards a game.
Steve Smith -- 76.7 points
Second in the league with an average of 102.2 yards per game, Smith has gone over 95 yards in his last five games.
Jason Witten -- 62.9 points
Witten has pulled in at least 10 balls in each of the four quarters for a total of 46 on the year.
Owen Daniels -- 60.8 points
In four road games Daniels has 25 receptions and 324 yards while at home he has only 18 grabs for 204 yards, but he has scored his two touchdowns in Texas.
Antonio Gates -- 60.3 points
In three victories, Gates has scored three times. In the Chargers' five loses he has scored just twice.
Chris Cooley -- 56.9 points
The past five weeks he has been targeted a position leading 41 times, leading to a position high 31 receptions.
Tony Gonzalez -- 55.1 points
Owen Daniels (20) is the only tight end with more receptions than Gonzalez (19) the past three weeks.
Dallas Clark -- 47.1 points
The past three weeks Clark has averaged 6.3 receptions, 79.3 yards and 0.67 scores a game.
Visanthe Shiancoe -- 40.8 points
Despite only eight grabs for 119 yards the past four weeks, Visanthe has scored three times.
Anthony Fasano -- 40.8 points
He is a totally different performer at home (15 receptions, 173 yards in four games) than on the road (six receptions, 115 yards in three games).
Greg Olsen -- 38.6 points
Olsen has 10 receptions in the first quarter and just 10 receptions in the third and fourth quarters combined.
Bo Scaife -- 38.4 points
Continues to post solid numbers week after week with at least three receptions in each of his past six games.
David Akers -- 80 points
Take away his 0-for-3 on 50-plus kicks and he would be 19-for-20 on the year on field goals.
John Carney -- 78 points
Though he is 18-for-19 on field goals, he has been held without an attempt in two of the past four games.
Matt Bryant -- 78 points
No one has attempted more field goals the past five weeks than Bryant, who has aimed at the uprights 15 times (he has made 12).
Stephen Gostkowski -- 72 points
The last five weeks Gostkowski has made 12 field goals on 15 tries, tying him for the most conversions in the league with Bryant.
Rob Bironas -- 71 points
Bironas has converted nine field goals the past three weeks, tying him with Dan Carpenter for the most in the NFL.
Shaun Suisham -- 69 points
In his past two games he is 5-for-5 on kicks of between 40 and 49 yards.
Jason Elam -- 69 points
Elam is 9-for-10 outside and 8-for-9 indoors on field goal attempts.
Robbie Gould -- 69 points
Gould has converted two field goals in each of the Bears' last four games.
Nate Kaeding -- 68 points
In half of his eight games Kaeding has recorded exactly 12 points.
Joe Nedney -- 67 points
Nedney has missed two-of-seven attempts with the Niners ahead or tied, but he is 12-for-12 when the club is behind.