It's deep into the playoff drive, but this is a week to trust a rookie. Flacco (above) has nine touchdown tosses in his last six games, and he is going against a toothless Bengals defense that in its last five games has allowed eight passing touchdowns and an average of 268.2 passing yards.
This is an article from the Dec. 1, 2008 issue
Matt Cassel's back-to-back 400-yard passing days have pumped life into this '08 disappointment; in those games Gaffney came up with a dozen catches for 174 yards. This week Pittsburgh will concentrate on covering Randy Moss and Wes Welker, giving Gaffney a chance to make even more hay.
Ignore Kansas City's 3-to-1 pass-to-run ratio last week against Buffalo. Johnson gained 81 yards on seven carries for his second solid performance since returning from suspension. Start him against the Raiders, who are yielding an NFL-worst 197.5 rushing yards per game over the past six weeks.
Gore (above) has not traveled well this season. In three games east of the Rocky Mountains the Niners' top threat has averaged 39.7 rushing yards and has yet to reach the end zone. That trend should continue this week in Buffalo, where no visiting back has run for more than 80 yards this season.
He was a Week 12 fantasy sensation, gaining 132 yards and scoring twice in St. Louis. But the rookie will be shut down in Week 13 by a much tougher Vikings front seven that has allowed just 70.4 yards per game and held Forte to 56 rushing yards in Chicago in Week 7.
The Ravens' defense limited Philadelphia's Brian Westbrook to 39 rushing yards on Sunday, not a promising sign for the next back headed its way. Benson has gained a mere 3.1 yards per carry since signing with Cincinnati, and he'd do well just to equal that paltry number this week.
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