After flirting with fantasy greatness earlier in the season, the clock has struck 12 on Kyle Orton and he's turned back into ... Kyle Orton. He has been putrid the past two games despite facing a pair of weak defenses. He has thrown for only 324 yards and one TD in those games against the Saints and Packers and he hasn't topped 220 yards passing in a game since Week 7. The Texans are very forgiving in terms of pass defense, allowing 213.2 yards a game and they were shredded last week by JaMarcus Russell So on paper, this is another great matchup for Orton. But after watching him soil the bed the past two games, there's little reason to think he'll come through now. Keep him benched if you can.
Forte has been quiet of late as he's been held under 75 yards rushing in each of the past three games. The good news is he's scored in each of the past two and with Orton playing poorly he'll likely be an even greater focal point with a playoff berth on the line. Houston allows 126.2 rushing yards a game so this is a very favorable matchup. Look for Forte to score again but this time generate some strong yardage as well.
Hester remains the best WR the Bears have. Unfortunately, he would be a No. 3 WR on most teams, which tells you all you need to know about the Bears' WR situation. Hester has caught 11 passes the past three games but is being brought down by Kyle Orton's ineptitude. This is a great matchup and Hester is always a threat to score on a long pass, but with Orton struggling, Hester is just a WR4 with mild upside this week.
Lloyd remains a non-factor in the Chicago passing game. He has only three receptions in the past three games and has only caught one touchdown pass the entire season. There's no reason to gamble on him this week given his lack of production.
Olsen is the shining light in an otherwise bleak Bears' passing game. He had another strong game in Week 16 against the Packers, catching five passes for 49 yards and a touchdown. He has 16 receptions in his past three games with two TDs in that span. He's back to being a very starting option as he's the only receiver Orton is capable of connecting with consistently. Start him with confidence this week.
Clark was relatively involved last week against the Packers, catching four passes for 37 yards. With Orton unable to throw the ball downfield, Clark is more of a viable target lately as he has seven receptions in the past two games. Despite that, he's just a so-so option in large PPR leagues so find another TE this week if you can.
Gould was Mr. Overtime for the second week in a row as he drilled another game winner, this time to beat the Packers and keep the Bears' playoff hopes alive. Gould is finishing on a strong note, having scored 28 points in his last three games. The Bears will move the ball effectively this week so Gould is looking real good if you need him.
The Bears continue to be pushed around defensively. They struggled to stop Aaron Rodgers last week and face a red-hot Matt Schaub this week. For the season, they are giving up 21.3 points per game and rank 14th in the league in total defense. Schaub will get reckless at times, but this isn't the strongest matchup for the Bears so find another defense this week if possible.
Schaub had another strong game in terms of yardage last week (255) but he was unable to throw a TD pass in the loss at Oakland. He has averaged 318 yards passing the past three games and takes aim at a weak Chicago pass defense that gives up 235.4 yards a game. Back at home and with the Bears showing no signs they can defend the pass, look for Schaub to finish the season in strong fashion.
Slaton had a quiet game by his current standards last week, rushing for only 66 yards in the loss to the Raiders. He did add five receptions for 36 yards, enhancing his productivity in PPR leagues. The Bears give up only 91.3 rushing yards a game but they have been knocked around a bit in recent games (notably by Pierre Thomas in Week 15) so Slaton has a chance to do well. His huge involvement in the offense continues to make him a strong starting option in all formats so don't shy away from him this week.
Johnson was almost completely taken out of the game last week by Oakland's stud CB Nnamdi Asomugha as he was limited to only two receptions for 19 yards. He'll get back on track in a big way this week against a poor Chicago secondary so look for Johnson to regain his status as one of the game's elite fantasy WRs.
As expected, Walter also came up small last week for the Texans, catching only two passes. He has only four receptions the past two games so he's risky despite the great matchup this week. But ultimately, he should win his battles in the secondary since the Bears lack quality talent to defend him. Consider Walter a solid WR3 this week.
With the WRs getting shut down last week, Daniels stepped up in a huge way against the Raiders, catching seven passes for 111 yards. He has 17 receptions in the past three games with at least 40 yards receiving in each of those games. Johnson and Walter will be back in form this week but Daniels will continue to be targeted often by Matt Schaub. He's a quality starting TE this week.
Brown continues to deliver nicely for his fantasy owners. He drilled three FGS last week (including one from beyond 50 yards) and has made eight FGs in his past three games. The Texans will move the ball at will against a soft Chicago defense so Brown is looking real good again this week. Start him with confidence.
The Texans offer little defensively. They were shredded last week by JaMarcus Russell and are giving up 24.7 points per game. Kyle Orton is playing poorly so that helps but the Texans haven't shown enough consistent productivity to make them a reliable fantasy option. Look elsewhere for your defense this week.