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News » Lineup calls: Smith returns for Panthers

Lineup calls: Smith returns for Panthers

Lineup calls: Smith returns for Panthers
A number of factors conspired to defeat fantasy owners in Week 2.

The remnants of Ike changed play-calling in several games. Donovan McNabb owners betrayed by his receivers. Those owners facing Jay Cutler received their comeuppance at the hands of Ed Hochuli (like Kordell Stewart getting an extra down). L.T. got hurt. L.J. was little-used. Steven Jackson re-signed with the Rams.

FOX Fantasy Football

Dwayne Bowe at Atlanta

I have zero confidence in Tyler Thigpen, but I do have confidence in Bowe, who's still building confidence back from his drop-marred effort in the opener. He's caught 11 passes for 139 yards through two weeks and should be able to create space against the inexperienced Atlanta secondary.

Torry Holt at Seattle

Am I sold on the Rams and Marc Bulger following that brief glimpse of life in Week 2 before they were throttled by the Giants? No, I'm just sold on Holt. The veteran receiver caught six passes for 76 yards and a touchdown in that game. As he demonstrated last year, he can still perform in a horrid offense. Al Saunders may eventually right the ship, but it won't happen anytime soon. So, even though the Rams will be defeated soundly by the Seahawks this weekend, Holt will get his numbers.

Santana Moss vs. Arizona

Moss posted the big game-clinching touchdown grab last weekend against New Orleans. I believe this was a great confidence-building moment for Jason Campbell, and that Jim Zorn will allow his quarterback to take more shots downfield. The Cardinals will try to force the issue upfront, and I believe Moss could take advantage of the man coverage on a deep ball. I don't anticipate a mountain of catches here, but it just takes one.

Chris Chambers vs. New York Jets

Chambers has made the most of his limited opportunities while drawing blanket coverage. He'll face a tough task here against Darrelle Revis, but I like the way this offense is operating, with or without LaDainian Tomlinson. As we've seen, the San Diego defense hasn't been able to get the big stop. Therefore, I expect the Jets to put pressure on this offense to keep scoring.

Bryant Johnson vs. Detroit

The 49ers offense has finally played together for several games, and you can see that J. T. O'Sullivan and his receivers are getting onto the same page. Johnson caught six passes and his first touchdown as the No. 1 receiver in Mike Martz's offense. O'Sullivan bounced back in Rocky-like fashion, throwing for 321 yards despite absorbing eight sacks. Let's face it. The Lions will not be able to sustain a pass rush against the 49ers (even though the O-Line is suspect as well), allowing O'Sullivan to work downfield.

Wide Receiver Sleepers

Antonio Bryant at Chicago

Joey Galloway's expected to miss this week's game because of a lingering ankle injury, meaning Bryant will see more targets against Chicago. Granted, it'll be tough going for Brian Griese against his former team, but I'm optimistic Bryant can be of help to those owners in PPR leagues. He was targeted nine times in the opener before receiving just three looks last week.

Justin Gage vs. Houston

Gage is on the radar following his five-reception, 59-yard effort last week against the Bengals in windy conditions, including an 11-yard touchdown from Kerry Collins. He's a player to watch this week, as the Titans will generate short fields for Collins and the running game. I don't expect the formula to change much, but I do expect Collins to build on his strong rapport with Gage.

Amani Toomer vs. Cincinnati

Eli Manning continues to work toward his veteran receivers. Toomer caught six passes for 67 yards and a touchdown against St. Louis, and this week's matchup appears to be a carbon copy. Obviously, the one change is that the Giants will be rolling up points and sacks in front of the home crowd. I anticipate a big day from Manning in this contest against a suspect Cincinnati secondary.

Muhsin Muhammad at Minnesota

Muhammad's been the recipient of 21 pass targets from Jake Delhomme through two weeks. He's made good on those attempts for 11 receptions while averaging 57.5 receiving yards per game. The return of Steve Smith forces defensive coordinators to commit to double-coverage, and that'll open space for the cagey veteran over the middle. Minnesota's pass defense couldn't sustain its early success against the Colts, and I expect more of the same this weekend.

Wide Receiver Flops

Andre Johnson at Tennessee

Tennessee did a masterful job in Week 2 of shutting down Carson Palmer and the Bengals' offense. The Titans were obviously aided by the wind, but we could see a repeat effort at home. The crowd will be in a frenzy to celebrate the 2-0 Titans, a team that possesses one of the best pass rushes in the game. Matt Schaub will be under duress in this contest, and that portends to a smallish effort from Johnson. He needs to be in your lineup, but I'm not optimistic about the returns.

Chad Ocho Cinco at New York Giants

Like Bulger in the quarterback "Flops" section, I'm almost set to toss the Bengals' offensive stars in permanently until they post a breakout game. Ocho Cinco's caught just five passes for 59 yards through two games. Carson Palmer's been erratic with his throws, and the offensive line's crumbled under persistent pressure. The Giants will bring the heat this week, and this revamped secondary has the talent to shut down the Bengals' downfield threats.

Patrick Crayton at Green Bay

Crayton's been a non-factor through two weeks. Although he nearly broke loose for a long gain against the Eagles, an ankle tackle felled him. This could be another shootout akin to Week 2 that gets him involved. However, the Cowboys will keep running that play down the middle with Jason Witten until a safety stays home to stop it. He's worthy of a play in deeper leagues, as there's always a possibility of a big day in this attack. In shallow leagues, find a better option.

Keep your browser locked onto FOXSports.com for all of the latest player and team news as the countdown to kickoff winds down. You can hit me up on the "FOX Fantasy Freaks" on FOX Sports Radio on Sunday morning from 10am ET-12pm ET (7am PT-9am PT).

Good luck!

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: September 19, 2008

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Adrien Clarke Name: Adrien Clarke
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Age: 27
Experience: 4 years
College: Ohio State
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