With the trade deadline nearing or already here in many fantasy football leagues, it's time for the annual tradition that drives all scrupulous fantasy geeks nuts.
It's the time of year when fantasy owners in the running for a playoff spot lose all sense of fairness and work up absurdly lopsided trades with their pals whose teams have long been out of the postseason hunt.
You know the type: ``Let's see, how about I give you Cadillac Williams and Kerry Collins and you give me Aaron Rodgers and Brandon Jacobs. ... Oh, and I'll buy your lunch this week.''
Check out some blockbusters listed recently on a major fantasy Web site: Kurt Warner for J.T. O'Sullivan. Clinton Portis for Jerricho Cotchery and Daunte Culpepper (really). And my personal favorite: Derek Anderson, Austin Miles, David Akers, Kevin Curtis and Fred Taylor for Drew Brees, Marshawn Lynch, Bernard Berrian, Donald Driver and Matt Prater.
r league.
As you lobby your commissioner to crack down on the trades that threaten the very fabric of this pretend game, here's a look at some players to start and some to avoid in Week 10:
-What's become of the good old black and blue division? Now everybody scores 30 or 40 in NFC North battles, so look for more big days from Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers (300 yards or at least 2 scores in all but 2 games) and Minnesota's Gus Frerotte (5 TDs in last 2 games).
-In the four games since his 6-touchdown eruption, the Jets' Brett Favre has just 3 TDs and 8 interceptions. But he's due to go off against the 28th-ranked pass defense of the Rams, who get credit for trying recently but still have that JV look about them.
-Is it physically possible to be terrible against the Bengals and Lions in back-to-back weeks? Probably not, so look for Jacksonville's David Garrard to bounce back. He'd gone four straight with a score before inexplicably becoming the first QB in recent memory to collapse against Cincinnati.
-Atlanta's Matt Ryan is hardly playing like a rookie anymore, with two TD passes in three of his last four games. And now he gets the flimsy Saints defense that gets significantly flimsier on the road.
Please, in the name of J.T. O'Sullivan, don't start these guys:
x Grossman should make his first start since completing two passes and getting hurt in a December loss. That's bad news for everybody but owners of the Titans defense (4 TD passes allowed, 13 INTs) and people who like to watch replays of funny QB miscues.
-Eli Manning could go off in a Giants-Eagles shootout, or he could just get tossed around like a rag doll. He only has two scores in his last three against Philly, and he has yet to post back-to-back games with multiple TDs this year.
-Now that it's been nine straight games without multiple touchdowns, it's time to admit Buffalo's Trent Edwards is a terrible fantasy QB.
-Speaking of terrible Bills, Marshawn Lynch isn't one, is he? He's yet to hit 100 yards but has been too productive to think last week's 16-yard output was a sign of things too come. He did score last year in his only career game at New England.
-Yes, Jacksonville is flying the white flag this year, and yes, Jacksonville's Maurice Jones-Drew was even shut down by the Bengals. But he's still worth a start against the winless Lions, who are much more committed to failure than Cincinnati.
-Carolina's DeAngelo Williams should be winded by halftime after racing all over Oakland's 28th-ranked defense, sprints that'll only be briefly interrupted by Raiders' three-and-outs.
right in his 32-yard return from injury last week. He's no longer one of those guys you start regardless of the opposition, so sit him when the Colts face the Steelers' No. 1 defense that's allowed an NFL-low 9 TDs in 8 games.
-LenDale White is still a TD machine, but owners should be getting a bit concerned by Chris Johnson's recent hogging of the touches. Johnson has 53 touches to 19 for White in the unbeaten Titans' past two games, and White didn't score last week for only the second time this year.
-Houston's Steve Slaton has become a player you don't want to bench, but he's facing a Ravens' top-ranked run defense that's allowed just one TD run.
-Overthinker Alert: Everything points to benching Indy's Reggie Wayne this week. He's gone three weeks without a TD or 100 yards and his QB will be terrorized against Pittsburgh's No. 1 pass defense that also leads the league in sacks (32). But the week you bench him is the week he goes for 200 and scores three times.
-It's actually safe to start a Chief this week. Dwayne Bowe has had three straight decent games, he appears to have a marginally competent QB in Tyler Thigpen, and San Diego has the worst pass defense in the league.
o throw it somewhere when three or four Ravens are draped on Andre Johnson.
-The weird thing isn't that you should start Arizona No. 3 receiver Steve Breaston against dreadful San Francisco. It's that the Cardinals and 49ers somehow scammed their way into a Monday night game.
-Give Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes a rest because the Steelers surely will. With banged up QBs and facing the Colts' tiny run defense that can't stop anybody, look for 55 or so straight handoffs.
-Likewise, the Ravens probably won't have to throw much at Houston, so don't expect a second straight 100-yard day from Derrick Mason. (His last back-to-back 100-yard games were the first two of the 2002 season.)
-It's safe to say Koren Robinson's big day in Seattle was a fluke. After his 90-yard TD catch in the opening moments last week, he managed 15 yards over the final 58:26.
Pick up these guys if they're available in your league: Texans QB Sage Rosenfels (starter), Chiefs RB Jamaal Charles (106 yards), Browns QB Brady Quinn (starter), Ravens WR Derrick Mason (136 yards, TD), Bears QB Rex Grossman (probable starter), Chiefs QB Tyler Thigpen (not terrible), Lions QB Daunte Culpepper (employed).
OFF THIS WEEK: Cincinnati, Dallas, Washington, Tampa Bay.
ek's projections:
Big Hits: I expected big things for Tim Hightower (109 yards, TD), Eli Manning (3 TDs), Donovan McNabb (349 yards, 2 TDs), Eddie Royal (TD), Calvin Johnson (94 yards, TD) and Marc Bulger (2 TDs). I expected more woes for Ben Roethlisberger (50 yards, INT, injury) and Jamal Lewis (49 yards).
Big Misses: I suggested cutting Donald Driver (136 yards, TD) and benching Antonio Bryant (115 yards, TD), Braylon Edwards (86 yards, TD), Cedric Benson (104 yards, TD) and Jamaal Charles (106 yards). I expected nice days from David Garrard (0 TD, INT), Fred Taylor (12 yards) and Donnie Avery (26 yards).

Recent NFL Discussions

Applause to D Trump on Thu, Dec 2016 by Timmy1961
kc/oak 2nd half on Thu, Dec 2016 by Timmy1961
kc/oak update on Thu, Dec 2016 by Timmy1961
Pick Wiz ADD 12/8 - LIVE GAME on Thu, Dec 2016 by Michael Cash
Pick Wiz 12/8 2H Play on Thu, Dec 2016 by pickwiz

NFL Top Stories

Thumbnail Raiders vs. Chiefs Prediction Will the Raiders get their revenge on their AFC West rivals the Chiefs tonight on Thursday Night Football?
Thumbnail Vikings vs. Jaguars Pick The Minnesota Vikings hope to cure their offensive woes when they meet the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday at 1PM ET?
Thumbnail Titans vs. Broncos Pick Will the under cash when the Titans host the Broncos this Sunday at 1:00PM ET in Nashville?
Thumbnail Dolphins vs. Cardinals Pick After they were held in check by the Ravens last weekend in Baltimore, will the Dolphins' offense rebound on Sunday when they host the Cardinals?
Thumbnail Bears vs. Lions Pick Can the Detroit Lions take care of business at home on Sunday when they host the Chicago Bears, or are they set for a...

NFL Team Pages