THE MIAMI offensehas been fun to watch this year. Ronnie Brown taking snaps! Chad Pennington atwideout! Patrick Cobbs (who?) with 138 yards and two TDs! After Sunday's gameyou might be tempted to pick up Cobbs, or Pennington. Don't. The Dolphins areusing unpredictable game plans to cover for their skill-player deficiencies;this may be good for Miami's offense, but it is bad for fantasy owners insearch of consistent production. Don't be among those taken in by the Dolphins'deception.
Market Watch:Who's Up, Who's Down
Back from a lost year in Oakland, Rhodes looked at home against a fierce Ravensrun defense on Sunday. He rushed for 73 yards and a touchdown after JosephAddai left with a hamstring injury in the first quarter. Since Addai will beless than 100% this week against the Packers, one of the easier teams to runon, Rhodes is a good short-term pickup.
In four starts since taking over for Tarvaris Jackson, the 37-year-oldjourneyman has quietly averaged 247 yards passing (including 296 last weekagainst Detroit), which places him in the NFL's top 10. He and wideout BernardBerrian have connected for more than 100 yards and a TD in each of the last twogames and will make it three this week against Chicago.
The second-round pick broke into the receiver rotation in Week 3, and on Sundayagainst Washington he showed he belonged there, with four catches for 73 yards,including two clutch late-game grabs. Expect the rookie to build on this effortand get more chances in the coming weeks.
You've been waiting for McGahee to once again play like the back who rushed for1,000 yards in three of his four full seasons, but injuries and Baltimore'sbackfield-by-committee approach have resulted in weeks of disappointment.Gaining a mere 3.2 yards per carry, he's become virtually unusable; it's timeto cut your losses and send McGahee to the waiver wire.
He was a hot pickup after catching TDs in the first three weeks of the season,but since then Brett Favre has been looking more to Laveranues Coles, who has16 catches, 166 yards and three TDs in the last two games. Stuckey has only twocatches for 12 yards in that period—which means that once again he should benothing more than a fantasy afterthought.
Any hope for consistent production has been dimmed by the return to form ofMarvin Harrison (83 yards, two TDs against Baltimore) and the presence of ahealthy Dallas Clark at tight end. After 137 yards in Week 2, Gonzalez has hadjust seven catches for 73 yards in the three games since.
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Three to Get Ready
• DON'T WASTE a roster spot waiting on Carson Palmer.Not only does the Bengals QB (right) have a bad elbow, but Cincinnati will alsobe seeing some tough defenses, with games against the Steelers (twice),Jaguars, Eagles and Ravens in the next six weeks.
• DON'T PANIC if you're a Terrell Owens owner, justbecause Cowboys QB Tony Romo could miss the next four weeks with a brokenpinkie. Backup QB Brad Johnson is a steady hand who can keep the Dallas offensemoving.
• GO OUT and get currently injured players like EaglesWR Kevin Curtis and Denver RB Ryan Torain; they could have major fantasy valueby season's end.
RICHARD C. LEWIS/ICON SMI (PENNINGTON)
PICK ONE Shun Pennington, grab Rhodes (near right) and ditch McGahee (far right).
MATTHEW EMMONS/US PRESSWIRE (RHODES)
GREG FIUME/GETTY IMAGES (MCGAHEE)
[See caption above]
SCOTT BOEHM/GETTY IMAGES (PALMER)