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Original Issue

Who Saw Him Coming?

Derek Anderson heads the list of '07's top surprises—nasty or nice

IN AUGUST the biggest question facing the Browns was not if but when first-round pick Brady Quinn would take over from incumbent starter Charlie Frye. The team's other quarterback, third-year man Derek Anderson—who had a lousy preseason, by the way—was an afterthought in a discussion that seemed to have little fantasy relevance. Who cared about who was leading the Cleveland offense?

This debate is over—and how. At midseason not only is Anderson the Browns' quarterback of the future, but he is among the NFL leaders in touchdown passes with 17. No fantasy owner could have imagined that Anderson, who has also rushed for two scores, would have accounted for as many TDs as LT, LJ, Steven Jackson, Rudi Johnson, Shaun Alexander, Frank Gore and Reggie Bush combined. In a year of surprises the rise of this unheralded 6' 6" backup is the most startling. Before this season fantasy owners asked, "Who'll be this year's Marques Colston?" Next summer they'll be wondering, "Who's the next Derek Anderson?"

Brett Favre

IN 2005 AND '06 he had more interceptions (47) than touchdowns (38), but by shrewdly picking his spots the ol' gunslinger (13 TDs to eight INTs) is showing new care with the ball.

LenDale White

FAT. LAZY. SLOW. Those are but a few of the words used to deride White in 2006. Given his five TDs and three 100-yard games, try these: Every. Week. Starter.

Saints Offense

THE TOP ATTACK of '06 has been looking much better of late, but it sputtered to 51 total points in the first four games. Reggie Bush has yet to have a 100-yard rushing day.

Bears Defense

HOW THE MIGHTY have fallen. Fantasy owners suddenly can't wait to face last season's most daunting D; Chicago has allowed eight rushing TDs in as many games.


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This DA has made a convincing case for Cleveland's top job.