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Fantasy Land: So-Called Studs Were Duds

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Start this guy this week? Sorry, you probably lost.

    Every once in a while in fantasy football, the stars take a back seat to the lesser players once or twice a year.

    But in Week 1 of the 2010 NFL season, there were several known commodities who fell flat on their face while some retreads put up some big-time numbers. Does that mean the superstars of fantasy football are in for down years? Probably not, but it is something to watch out for.

    First we'll look at some perceived busts from Week 1, although the NFL is a tremenously cyclical league with lots of turnovers on playoff teams and breakout players, but these guys have more expected from them and didn't deliver.

    1. Andre Johnson: Pretty much the universally ranked top receiver in fantasy football had just three catches for 33 yards and no scores for the Texans in their huge win over Indianapolis.

    2. Matt Schaub: See above. Schaub took a back seat to the newly found Texans running game and Arian Foster, who had a breakout game of 231 yards and three touchdowns, which was good for the second-best Week 1 performance by a running back in league history. Schaub, meanwhile, completed 9 of 17 passes for 107 yards, a touchdown and a pick. Yuck.

    3. Shonn Greene: Greene was all set to bust out of the seams this year and become a top-flight fantasy running back running behind one of the best offensive lines in the league on a team that would rather run the ball 40 times in a game than throw the ball 20. Granted, he was playing a stout Ravens defense led by Ray Lewis, but still, on Monday night he rushed for just 18 yards on five carries and lost a fumble while getting outworked by his elder "washed up" teammate LaDainian Tomlinson.

    4. Jonathan Stewart: The Panthers' 1B in their two-headed rushing attack had five carries for 12 yards. Ouch. And 1A, DeAngelo Williams didn't fair much better with 62 yards on 16 carries and no scores.

    Now, look at some of the folks who came out of recent fantasy doldrums and led the week's scoring: Chad Ochocinco (12 catches, 159 yards, 1 TD); Austin Collie (10 catches, 131 yards, 1 TD); Mark Clayton (10 catches, 119 yards); Matt Forte (201 total yards and a two scores); Carson Palmer (34-50, 345 yards, 2 TDs); Michael Vick (16-24, 175 yards, 1 TD, 11 carries for 103 yards).

    Speaking of Vick, he'll be a big pickup on the waiver wire this week after taking over for an ineffective Kevin Kolb, who suffered a concussion, meaning he'll likely be out at least one week, and there are many in Philly calling for Vick to win the job.

    Another hot pickup will be Green Bay running back Brandon Jackson, who will take over for Ryan Grant, who reportedly will miss the season with an ankle injury suffered in Sunday's win over Philadelphia.

    Looking at my advice from Friday, I hit the nail way OFF the head on Alex Smith, unfortunately for my team, but I was right on about Tony Romo not having a huge game, though Miles Austin sure did.