Fantasy Football: Start or Sit?

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Week 4 of the fantasy football season is here and the deadline to set your lineup is quickly approaching. There are always players that are borderline options for your team, so here are two players at each of the three key fantasy positions — quarterback, running back and wide receiver — that you should start and sit.

Players to Start:

1. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh — Big Ben has had a very average start to the fantasy football season so far, putting up 16 points a game. In fact, he’s listed as 20th-best fantasy quarterback option. But this week, the Steelers match up against a Houston squad that struggles to defend the pass, so expect big numbers from Roethlisberger.

2. Tim Hightower, Washington — Hightower did not have a great game against Dallas on Monday night, with only 41 yards on 14 carries. But this week Hightower should bounce back against a weak Rams defense. Expect him to get many goal line carries and at least one touchdown this week to give many owners a nice 15- to 20-point boost.

3. Dwayne Bowe, Kansas City — Bowe was a top-five fantasy receiver last season, but the Chiefs have gotten off to a 0-3 start and Bowe’s numbers have reflected that. So far he’s averaged only 8 points a week thus far. This game should be different though as Kansas City’s top receiving option is going against a weak Minnesota secondary. Expect him to see the ball early and often and to finally have a 100-yard game.

Players to Sit:

1. Michael Vick, Philadelphia — Vick has been all over the news this week with his comments about the referees not protecting him the way they do other quarterbacks. But the problem for fantasy owners this year is Vick not protecting them, as he’s failed to live up to his status as a top-10 pick. He has only averaged 17 points a game so far and has been off the field almost as much as he has been in the huddle. With his hand injured now, you just can’t trust him.

2. Frank Gore, San Francisco — Gore has been unproductive and hurt much of this season. This week he is questionable once again. Even if he does see the field he won’t be very effective as a result of his injury. Owners should sit him this week, and if you need help filling in for him look at his backup Kendal Hunter, who should see the bulk of the carries against a weak Eagles front seven.

3. Anquan Boldin, Baltimore — Revis Island is not a fun place for wide receivers to be and Boldin will find himself there this week. It would be a smart move for his owners to look elsewhere for wide-out production, as Boldin will most likely be stranded.

Printed on September 30, 2011 as: Hightower in line for big week, Boldin set to visit Revis Island