The Arizona Cardinals will play their first divisional home game of the season with the St. Louis Rams coming to Glendale. As you might have read by now, this could wind up being a battle between two second-string quarterbacks, as Kevin Kolb and Sam Bradford are questionable to play with separate injuries.
Outside of both teams fighting to see who will hold last place in the division, let's take a look at some of the individual players and how they could impact your fantasy team this week.
The Rams are statistically the worst defense again the run in the league this year and have allowed the second most points to opposing running backs in the fantasy realm. Beanie continues to get plenty of touches and will undoubtedly make a large impact, especially if Kevin Kolb is unable to go, making John Skelton the starter. The coaching staff will undoubtedly look for as many opportunities to run as possible. Keep in mind, though, that Beanie has not practiced this week and although he is expected to play on Sunday, it is not set in stone. Check for updates here on Revenge of the Birds prior to kickoff.
The Rams secondary has been depleted this season after losing guys such as Ron Bartell and Bradley Fletcher to season ending injuries. They have allowed the ninth most fantasy points to opposing receivers in 2011. Fitzgerald is a must start, but you may want to look at adding Early Doucet as well. He actually has more touchdown receptions than Fitz and could be a viable option for your team if many of your normal receivers or on a bye this week.
Campbell has become the type of player that should be started in your IDP league each week, regardless of the matchup. Even better is that he will be going up against the Rams offensive line this weekend, who have allowed the third most points to opposing defensive ends this season. He is a must start.
We don't quite know how the OLB depth chart will look this weekend for the Cardinals, but we do know that Daryl Washington will be starting at ILB. He already has registered 36 total tackles in the five games he has started, along with two sacks and an interception. Look for Cardinals defensive coordinator Ray Horton to use the blitz frequently (as he always does) to pressure either A.J. Feeley or the young Sam Bradford. Washington should get plenty of points this weekend, as the Rams have allowed the second most points to opposing linebackers this season.
On the road to an improbable win over the Saints, Rams running back Steven Jackson was able to put up huge numbers. He rushed for 159 yards, had 32 yards receiving and he scored two touchdowns. It looks like he is finally getting over some of the nagging injuries he has dealt with for quite a while now. Add in the fact that Feeley might be their quarterback this weekend and the Rams are feeling confident after a big win and you get a must start for SJ39.
Lloyd was targeted 13 times last week against the Saints and managed to gain 53 yards and a touchdown. Also, this is his third week in the system with the Rams and possibly his second consecutive game playing with A.J. Feeley under center, so some chemistry might be forming by now. He is a must start as well, given that the Cardinals have allowed the 4th most fantasy points to opposing receivers this season.
Long recorded three sacks last week, increasing his total to six on the season. He gets another favorable matchup this week against the Cardinals, who have allowed the fourth most fantasy points to opposing defensive ends. If Long is going up against the likes of Levi Brown and Brandon Keith the entire day, look for him to have a big game.
An often overlooked player in the NFL, Laurinaitis has become one of the premiere young middle linebackers in the league. He has 57 tackles, a sack and a pick on the season and is one of the big playmakers on the Rams' defense. Last week alone, he registered ten of those tackles and a sack, along with two passes defended. Throw in the fact that the Cardinals have allowed the third most fantasy points to opposing linebackers and he too becomes a must start. He might even be on the waiver wire in some of your leagues, so I am designating him my sleeper of the week.
What do you think? Are there any other players you feel should be added to this list? How do you think some of these players will fare this Sunday?
Stats from Yahoo! Sports