Patriots fantasy focus

Posted Oct. 29, 2010 @ 12:44 p.m.
Posted By Kevin Fishbain

Patriots fantasy owners likely got hit hard last week, unless they had PK Stephen Gostkowski, as the Chargers' defense slowed down the Pats' attack.

This week they have a weaker foe in the Vikings, but a good enough defense that still will test the Pats.

Let's start with RB BenJarvus Green-Ellis. The "Law Firm" has been a bit of a disappointment to owners who snatched him up when he became the starter. Green-Ellis has lost second-half carries to Danny Woodhead each of the past two games, but he is still the goal-line back (he had a rushing TD last week), so he still could get you those six points.

Woodhead had 52 total yards (on 11 touches) against the Chargers and is worth a start at flex positions just because Brady and the Patriots seem to like getting him the ball in space. Both Woodhead and Green-Ellis will be going against the Vikings' rushing defense, so neither is likely to have a huge day.

As for the WR position, Brandon Tate hasn't come close to impressing owners that picked him up when Randy Moss was traded. His numbers actually have gone down. WRs Deion Branch and Wes Welker are still solid starts, but the safest start (besides Brady) at the skill positions is rookie TE Aaron Hernandez. While he has yet to reach the endzone, he still has been productive without Moss, grabbing five catches for 54 yards against the Chargers with eight targets.  

Gostkowski has been automatic since his early struggles, and if the Patriots' offense stalls against Minnesota like it did last week, he'll have his chance to kick some field goals. Expect Brady and his wide receivers to have a better game in Week Eight, but they might not put up the huge numbers they had earlier in the season.