James Quintong's Blog
We don't have to wait until the often nebulous midweek injury reports to reshuffle fantasy rosters this week. Let's take a look at some of the most notable news items from this week so far that definitely will wreak havoc on rosters and cause plenty of action on the waiver wire:

-- Bears to bench Rex Grossman, start Brian Griese against the Lions: I guess it took long enough for the plug to be pulled on Grossman after he struggled in what looked to be decent matchups against the Chiefs and Cowboys. It is interesting that he's gone from fantasy revelation early last year to one of the most despised players in Chicago now.

However, the veteran Griese now has the job, just in time for a very favorable matchup against the Lions. There are some decent weapons around, which makes Griese a decent bye week play or a second quarterback in two-QB leagues. Beyond that, though, Griese isn't much better of a fantasy option than Grossman other than he hopefully won't get you negative points with his turnovers.

-- Deuce McAllister out for season with torn ACL: So McAllister has now injured both ACLs in the course of just three years. He tore his right ACL in 2005 and the left one on Monday night. Reggie Bush takes over as the primary back, but his fantasy value may not rise as much as you might think. Sure, he'll get more looks, especially at the goal line (he scored twice from the 1 on Monday night), but he hasn't done much while running the ball so far this season, although he has to now. We'll see if Bush can handle a bigger load in the running game -- remember that even at USC, LenDale White did a lot of the heavy lifting alongside Bush.

With that said, it might be worth stashing Aaron Stecker on the bench in deeper leagues as either insurance for Bush or if you think he might even get some of the carries that McAllister would've gotten.

-- Steven Jackson out this week with groin injury: It hasn't been a good season for the top running backs, and Jackson is out this week as soon as he put up his first decent performance of the season. At least, the Rams ended any speculation by ruling him out early in the week. And in his place steps rookie Brian Leonard, who did a little bit of everything at Rutgers. Since he'll get the start, he's definitely worth a shot as a No. 2 or 3 back or especially a flex player, especially if you handcuffed Leonard to Jackson. He's obviously got decent running ability, and like Jackson, he's a solid receiver out of the backfield, especially useful in point-per-reception leagues.

Leonard's availability on the waiver wire really depends on what type of league you're in. Leonard was drafted in the late rounds (12th-14th range) in my deeper leagues and especially those where running backs are hoarded and few people are tying up roster spots with backup kickers and defenses. However, I was still able to get Leonard this week in another 12-team league where lots of teams had the extra kickers and defenses (and someone released Braylon Edwards before his Week 2 explosion).

-- Vernon Davis out at least two games with a sprained knee: Just as he was getting into the swing of things with Alex Smith, Davis gets hurt once again. The 49ers' options behind him at tight end (Billy Bajema, Delanie Walker) aren't recommended, so you'll have to jump on the waiver wire to find other choices. The Panthers' Jeff King could be one option as he already has 13 receptions and a TD. Another could be the Packers' Donald Lee, who has 12 catches and a score as Brett Favre is looking to the tight ends regularly once again.

There are some other iffy situations like Hines Ward (Nate Washington probably gets a start along side Santonio Holmes), Rudi Johnson (Kenny Watson would get the start, plus the Bengals signed former Colts backup DeDe Dorsey), Brian Westbrook (probably will play, but you never know) and Jake Delhomme (the Panthers are proving wise by having David Carr as the backup QB). My colleague Will Carroll will have more on the injuries tomorrow.


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