UP Thomas Jones, RB, N.Y. Jets
Don’t keep Jones on your bench against Kansas City. Based on his production the last two weeks (two touchdowns and 65 yards against Cincinnati, 159 yards against Oakland), Jones deserves to crack your starting lineup — especially this week, when he and the Jets face the Chiefs, whose run defense (207 yards per game allowed) is the worst in football.
UP Patrick Cobbs, RB, Miami
If you need a back, why not take a chance on Cobbs? He barely gets carries for the Dolphins, but they’ve been throwing to Cobbs the last two weeks with excellent results: he’s combined for 202 receiving yards. Cobbs is not worth a start unless you are desperate, but many of us are when it comes to fantasy running backs. Someone in my league started Kevin Faulk last weekend.
UP Kyle Orton, QB, Chicago
Orton has 10 touchdowns and only four interceptions in his last five games, and his performance has Chicago atop the NFC North. Only 47 percent of his owners started him against Minnesota last weekend, but Orton is either a solid starting option or a solid chip in a trade offer to a team that is weak at quarterback.
DOWN Eli Manning, QB, N.Y. Giants
If Manning is your starter, or if he is part of a platoon, this is the week to go with your other quarterback. Manning and the Giants are facing Pittsburgh, and the Steelers allow the league low in passing yards per game (158.7). Manning’s season has been adequate, but not strong enough to make him a must-start player no matter the matchup.
DOWN Larry Johnson, RB, Kansas City
Johnson was suspended last weekend for violating team rules, and his return won’t help his owners this weekend. The Chiefs face the Jets, who are mediocre overall but terrific at stopping the run (fourth in the league at 83 yards per game).
DOWN Kurt Warner, QB, Arizona
If you had a suitable replacement for Warner last weekend when he was on a bye, then leave him on your bench again. The Cardinals are facing Carolina, and the Panthers are unforgiving in their treatment of quarterbacks. They have allowed just two passing touchdowns since Philip Rivers had three in Week 1.
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This week's OT cover
OT beat writersMaureen Mullen brings you Red Sox information and insights.
Tom Wilcox covers the Patriots.
Scott Souza is all over the Celtics.
Danny Picard is on the ice with the Bruins.
Mike McDonald takes a look at the humorous side of Boston sports