Ryan Mathews is set to return Thursday against the Oakland Raiders 29th ranked rush defense. The Raiders have been great at being aggressive pass rushers but don’t have the talent to fill the holes. Mathews is a solid play, but expect Mike Tolbert carry most of the load so Mathews doesn’t push it too much. Also of not is Malcom Floyd has been ruled out for tomorrows game.
Ahmad Bradshaw may return this week but regardless it should be Brandon Jacobs who gets a majority of the carries. Neither player should have a particularly good day against the 49ers whom are only allowing 70 yards rushing per game. This should be another air show by Manning and his receivers. Hakeem Nicks is set to practice today and will be available Sunday.
Darren McFadden is officially out once again for Thursday’s game which means more of Michael Bush. San Diego is 18th vs. the rush and the Raiders will go run heavy. Palmer is still finding his groove and timing with his receivers and the Chargers are 4th against the pass, allowing only 191 yards per game.
With Kevin Kolb all but ruled out against the Eagles, I love the potential for Mike Vick and all your Eagles players. It’s basically win out or go home for this team and they will be facing a passing defense that is 29th in the league. Patrick Peterson is the best defender the Cards have and he is prone to being toasted. The Eagles should release plenty of steam this week and should have plenty of opportunities on offense. This is not a great time for John Skelton to make only his second start of the season on the road against a desperate team willing to take risks.
Emmanuel Sanders will miss a few weeks after having his knee scoped yesterday. The Bengals have quietly been one of the best defenses overall in the league (10th vs. pass, 2nd vs. run) so I expect Antonio Brown to receive a heavy amount of work as the primary possession receiver for the Steelers. Hines Ward also carries heavy sleeper value presuming he plays this week. Ike Taylor should be following Mike Wallace all over the field which limits his potential.
If Chris Johnson is going to have a breakout game it’s going to be this week against Carolina. He made great progress last week, 110 yards and will be leaned on as Hasselbeck faces off against a solid secondary. The Panthers are 24th against the run so there will be room to run, especially off the edges which Johnson prefers so much.
As if Aaron Rodgers hasn’t been torching secondaries enough, he draws the Vikings this week which sits at 30th, allowing 273 YPG. Greg Jennings and Jordy Nelson should each feast on the Vikes during MNF.
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