Good morning, Fools. Tomorrow is my birthday, and I was surprised with a big new, not-yet-available-in-the-stores flat screen last night so I could watch the games today in extra special style. Really looking forward to the afternoon!
Here's what we'll be watching:
Trent Richardson will suit up today with a flak jacket, so start him if you've got him. Don't count on much from Montario Hardesty, unless the starter gets knocked out again.
With DeMarco Murray out, it will be interesting to see if (a) Felix Jones can handle a full starter's workload, and (b) Phillip Tanner gets much action. I'm betting it's no and yes, which is why I didn't rush to grab Jones off the waiver wire.
Pittsburgh's running game could be a train wreck tonight. Both Mendenhall and Redman are out, leaving the duties to Jonathan Dwyer and Baron Batch. It's also possible that C Maurkice Pouncey, the anchor of their line, won't be playing. I was high on Dwyer's chances as a sleeper candidate during the offseason, but the rookie was a major let-down in the early part of the season. I just don't like this situation tonight at all.
Still no Greg Jennings, so look for more James Jones and Randall Cobb.
Rookie Alshon Jeffery is out for the Bears, and the Browns will go without Mohamed Massaquoi.
And perhaps the biggest loss of the day, Jimmy Graham is sidelined with a bum ankle. Hope you do better than I did in covering for a missing TE. I traded for Vernon Davis, whose only stat line on Thursday night was a tackle.
Inactive reports will be out shortly. Make sure you're following me at www.twitter.com/ladd_biro for all the late-breaking news and developments.
Have a great day, Fools!
About the author
Ladd Biro was named 2010 "Football Writer of the Year" by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. Ladd's nationally syndicated columns have appeared in more than 20 publications -- including the Dallas Morning News, San Francisco Chronicle, Philadelphia Inquirer, Chicago Sun-Times and Sporting News magazine -- since 2003. During the NFL season, he can be heard nationwide on Sporting News Radio as host of the weekly "Fantasy Files" program, dispensing his unique blend of wit and wisdom. Since 2009, all his written fantasy content can be found on the Fantasy Fools blog.