McNabb didn't look very pretty at times in the Week 10 loss to the Giants, but his numbers were strong as he passed for 194 yards and three touchdowns. He'll find things much easier this week against a Bengals' pass defense that gives up 193.7 yards a game. That statistic is misleading because teams haven't had to throw much on the Bengals given how bad their run defense is. So don't fear this matchup from McNabb's perspective. He has a healthy complement of weapons and won't have any trouble connecting with them downfield. He's looking good as usual this week.
Westbrook had a quiet game by his standards last week, rushing for only 26 yards and catching only three passes in the loss to the Giants. This matchup is much more favorable as the Bengals surrender 138.1 rushing yards a game. Look for Westbrook to get back on track and leave his owners much happier than they were Sunday night.
Curtis was having a dismal game last week before McNabb found him three times, including a TD, late. He's had back-to-back solid fantasy performances although he's yet to strike downfield which is his bread and butter. That could happen this week. The Bengals will try to get physical with him at the line of scrimmage but if he can beat the jam, he can beat them for a big play or two. He's a rock-solid WR3 with WR2 upside so don't hesitate to start him.
Jackson was all over the place in last week's loss to the Giants. He scored on a run out of the "Wildcat" formation and he caught four passes for 61 yards. The Eagles are clearly devising as many ways as possible to get him the ball and if you include his return skills, he's one of the most dynamic big-play threats in the league. And he's only going to get better. He's looking real good this week (expect 20 yards rushing on the totals above), so start him with confidence.
Brown has become the forgotten man in the passing game now that Curtis is healthy and Jackson continues to play well. He's always a threat to score as he did in Week 9, but he's also very inconsistent as we saw in Week 10 (1 reception for 7 yards). With Curtis and Jackson the leading figures in the passing game, Brown is far too shaky to rely on. So even though he's capable of a big game here or there, you shouldn't gamble with him in a starting role given how we've entered the important fantasy weeks. Keep him benched.
Smith returned last week but didn't do much, catching three passes for 36 yards. He remains a Red Zone threat but there are too many weapons in the passing game for him to develop a consistently significant role. That makes him nothing more than a reach and he's too unreliable to reach for this week so keep him benched.
Akers spent most of last week kicking extra points, converting four of them with one FG in the loss to the Giants. The Bengals don't offer much in the way of defense so Akers has an excellent chance to deliver 6-plus points for his fantasy owners this week. He's worth a look on Sunday if you need him.
The Eagles get a prime matchup against a bad QB (Ryan Fitzpatarick) and a struggling Bengals' offense. They forced two turnovers and had a sack last week and their aggressive approach should unsettle Fitzpatrick. His inability to throw downfield will help their coverage schemes as well so at least 2 INTs is in the cards. They are an elite fantasy defense this week.
Fitzpatrick gets another start as Carson Palmer sits again with his shoulder injury. Fitzpatrick has been awful as the starter, failing to throw for more than 165 yards in any of his starts. He has thrown for more than 1 TD in a game only once in five starts and he isn't likely to fare well against a ferocious Eagles' pass rush. There's no reason to consider starting him this week.
Benson has had some surprising success of late. He tore apart the Jaguars in Week 9, rushing for 104 yards and a touchdown in the Bengals' win. He's running hard and with a sense of purpose but given his history one has to wonder how long this will last. The Eagles have an average run defense, giving up 103.4 yards a game so Benson has a chance to be a decent flex option in larger leagues if you need him. He won't go off, but he shouldn't soil the sheets either.
It seems like years ago when Houshmandzadeh scored but his owners in PPR leagues are loving the fact he's gobbling up receptions at a high rate. He's caught at least six passes in his last seven games. Fitzpatrick can't stretch the field, but he will throw to Houshmandzadeh repeatedly on shorter routes. The Eagles will allow those passes throughout the game, knowing the Bengals lack any verticality to their offense. Houshmandzadeh has a shot at a touchdown this week as the Eagles will play softer late in an easy win, so expect plenty of receptions again with a good chance for T.J. to finally get back into the end zone.
Johnson is starting to warm up a bit. He scored twice in Week 9 and has three TDs in his last three games. He's also at least five passes in each of his last four games. He isn't putting up huge numbers and that isn't likely to happen with Fitzpatrick at QB, but he's become a steady WR3 option in PPR leagues. It's time to stop hoping Johnson will live up to his Draft Day billing but he's at least become a viable starter again and that has value.
Henry has become useless for fantasy owners without Carson Palmer to get him the ball downfield. This passing game is all about shorter routes and Henry thrives on making big plays downfield. He has no fantasy value at the present time and shouldn't be started in any league.
A sleeper pick before the season, Utecht's season has been a disappointment due to his own injury issues and Palmer's absence from the starting lineup. This isn't the week to expect him to turn things around so look elsewhere for TE help.
Graham has had a fine season when given an opportunity to kick, converting 11 of 12 FG attempts. He isn't likely to be very busy this week as the Eagles built a big lead early and coast to the win. So Graham is best kept on your bench this week.
The Bengals offer little in the way of fantasy help defensively. They give up 26.2 points per game and have one of the league's worst run defenses. That's a bad combination when going against Donovan McNabb and Brian Westbrook. The Eagles will have no difficulty shredding this defense, making the Bengals a useless fantasy option this week.