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Chad Henne :: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
The Cardinals, Eagles, Falcons and Panthers all take a breather this week leaving some of the game's best players sitting helplessly on your bench. Injuries have robbed your starting lineup of some others, meaning that some of you have to go to the waiver wire and free agency for every position. Here are the top widely available players who could give your team a boost this week.
1. Miami's strong-armed Chad Henne takes over for Chad Pennington against a Bills team that has allowed 273.3 yards per game through the air.
2. The Bengals have one of the league's stingiest defenses and the Browns have looked like a middle-school team on offense this season. But when it comes to the Battle of Ohio, you can usually throw away the records.
3. Is it possible for the Lions and Matthew Stafford to extend their winning streak to two this week in Chicago? Probably not, but with Kevin Smith iffy, Stafford may be forced to throw, and he has some receivers (Calvin Johnson, Bryant Johnson, Brandon Pettigrew) who make him a viable option.
4. Josh Johnson had some incredible numbers at San Diego (113 TDs , 15 INT, 19 rushing TDs) but even the Redskins are miles ahead of anybody Johnson played while guiding the Toreros. Still, his mobility makes him an intriguing gamble if your back's against the wall.
5. The Rams looked surprisingly like an NFL offense after Kyle Boller came in for an injured Marc Bulger last week. The Niners aren't an easy foe by any means, but at least Boller will finish with a point total in the black.
1. Jerome Harrison isn't anybody's idea of a player you want starting in your lineup. But with running backs in short supply, Jamal Lewis' understudy is someone who you can at least live with during a bye.
2. Larry Johnson is showing his age and Jamaal Charles, currently the third-down back in K.C., has outscored the starter in two of the three games played and overall for the season.
3. Maurice Morris is used to being a fill-in and, with Kevin Smith iffy this weekend, the former Seahawk is in position to contribute.
4. Derrick Ward and Earnest Graham are hurt and Cadillac Williams is fragile, meaning that return man Clifton Smith has a chance to put up some points.
5. Willie Parker is ailing and Rashard Mendenhall has been an enigma, so if the planets align correctly, the multitalented Mewelde Moore could get into a duel with fellow utilityman San Diego's Darren Sproles.
1. Player 1's stats (5 rec, 98 yards, 1 TD); Player 2's stats (4 rec, 96 yards, 2 TD's). Can you guess who they are? Player 1 is none other than Buffalo's Terrell Owens, a member of every league in the land. The second receiver? Jacoby Jones, who has become a deep threat for Matt Schaub's Texans.
2. Limas Sweed has been injured and disappointing when he's on the field, opening a chance for rookie Mike Wallace to step in and seize the Steelers' third-receiver slot. He's an excellent pickup, especially in dynasty leagues.
3. For whatever reason, Davone Bess's stock has been falling the last few weeks despite him catching 10 balls, totaling 17 for the year. He's eighth in the league in receptions making him a natural for PPR leagues.
4. He's had a couple of quiet weeks, but Chansi Stuckey is still an integral part of the Jets' aerial attack. Mark Sanchez will find him this week at the Superdome.
5. Kelley Washington has been overshadowed by some of the game's best receivers as a member of the Bengals and Patriots, but now he's shining in the Ravens' new high-octane passing attack.
1. Fresh off the injured report, Bo Scaife is a second-tier tight end but has been a missing cog for a struggling Titans offense. Kerry Collins will look his way in Jacksonville.
2. Kyle Boller threw two touchdown passes to Daniel Fells last week. But instead of picking up the backup, go get the starter, Randy McMichael, who could get some relevancy back with Boller calling the signals.
1. Joe Nedney ranks in the top 10 in field goals, extra points and kicking points yet he's owned in barely half of the leagues out there. His offense is one that will have him kicking lots of field goals for the rest of the season, making him a good permanent choice.
2. Denver's Matt Prater is playing for an undefeated team and averaging 8.7 points per game, yet he's owned in just over 40 percent of leagues.
1. The Saints are the only team in the league averaging two interceptions and two sacks per game and they're one of the top five scoring defenses around, yet they're available in a majority of leagues.
2. The Broncos have given up just 16 points all season, yet there are still a third of leagues that haven't caught on to Elvis Dumervil & Co., just yet. The Cowboys will be a challenge, but Denver should be up to the task.
Just the Facts
We're still just three weeks into the season, but we're starting to get a look at a few patterns that have developed thus far to help you set your lineups. These are the teams you that provide the most opportunities and troubles for your players.
Most passing yards allowed per game
1. Jaguars 281.7
2. Cardinals 280.3
3. Lions 278.7
4. Titans 274.7
5. Bills 273.3
Fewest passing yards allowed per game
1. Giants 124.0
2. Broncos 136.3
3. Eagles 156.0
4. Vikings 167.7
5. Jets 173.3
Most passing touchdowns allowed
1. Lions 10
2. Titans 7
2. Buccaneers 7
2. Cardinals 7
5. Jaguars 6
5. Packers 6
Fewest passing touchdowns allowed
1. Broncos 0
2. Colts 1
2 Jets 1
4. Giants 2
5. 11 tied 3
Most rushing yards allowed per game
1. Texans 205.0
2. Buccaneers 187.3
3. Browns 184.3
4. Panthers 182.7
5. Raiders 155.0
Fewest rushing yards allowed per game
1. Ravens 51.0
2. Titans 60.7
3. Dolphins 66.0
4. 49ers 66.7
5. Saints 67.0
Most rushing touchdowns allowed
1. Browns 8
1. Texans 8
2 Chiefs 5
4. Chargers 4
4. Giants 4
4. Bills 4
Fewest rushing touchdowns allowed
1. Ravens 0
1. Vikings 0
1. 49ers 0
5. 9 tied 1
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