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Fantasy Football Primer: Slim Pickings

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Welcome to Slim Pickings, where if your starter has been benched, is on bye, is banged up or is just plain bad, we have a few names who might be of some interest you.

In this recurring column, graphic designer Kyle Lewis, sports editor Brian Harmon and sports writer Jim Ayello will bring you fantasy options from beyond the obvious.

You know you should be starting Peyton Manning every week. That’s why you drafted him in the first couple of rounds. But what if you have Dallas quarterback Tony Romo going up against the vaunted Seattle defense (Week 6 for all you Romo owners)? Should you start him? Well, not unless you enjoy losing. So what are your options? That’s what we’re here to tell you. 

Every week, we’ll suggest three quarterbacks, three running backs and three wide receivers owned in less than 50 percent of ESPN standard leagues as a potential antidote for your fantasy woes. In other words, we’ll give you the names of players probably on your league’s waiver wire who can help you win your  matchup this week.

For some fun on our side of things, we’ll also be keeping track of the fantasy points our picks rack up. That way each week, you’ll know which of us is providing ingenious fantasy advice, and which of us you should send your hate mail to for ruining your season – sorry in advance.

Week 1 Picks

Kyle Lewis

QB: Alex Smith (KC)

RB: Dexter McCluster (TEN)

WR: Aaron Dobson (NE)

“I went with Aaron Dobson out of New England because year-after-year Tom Brady makes no-name receivers into stat machines. My hope is that Brady is Brady and Dobson becomes a household name.”

Brian Harmon

QB: Carson Palmer (AZ)

RB: Jonathan Stewart (CAR)

WR: Mike Williams (BUF)

“I trust any offense in the system of Arizona head coach Bruce Arians, the former Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator/interim head coach who gave then rookie-Andrew Luck plenty of downfield freedom two years ago. ”

Jim Ayello

QB: Eli Manning (NYG)

RB: Ahmad Bradshaw (IND)

WR: Markus Wheaton (PIT)

“My bet is that Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton will tire of Trent Richardon’s sorry act early on in this emotion-filled matchup, and hand the keys to the ground game over to his savvy veteran.”


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