The Chiefs have lost three straight games, but have shown good improvement thanks to the improved play of QB Tyler Thigpen. Even though he threw three interceptions in the 38-31 loss to Miami, he kept several drives alive and scored three TDs. He completed 20-of-41 passes for 320 yards and two TDs and added 57 yards rushing and a TD on six scrambles. He's not fantasy worthy yet, but he's making a case for himself that he should lead this team in 2009.
Johnson scored his fifth rushing TD of the season last week against Miami and topped 100 yards for the first time since Week 4. He scored on a two-yard run and gained 108 yards on only 12 carries as the Chiefs still aren't using him fulltime and not at all in passing situations. He's been a major fantasy bust this year and the future doesn't look much brighter, either.
Charles still isn't a main part of the offense, but he made a lot out of a little last week against Miami, catching three passes for 102 yards and adding 15 yards on three carries. He almost took a long sideline pass to the house, but honestly he's only getting 4-6 touches per week and shouldn't be counted on another 100-yard day anytime soon.
Bowe hasn't benefited from Tyler Thigpen's recent progress as he failed to catch a pass in the second half of the Week 15 loss to San Diego and finished with only three catches for 28 yards last week against Miami. He was targeted seven times on short routes as Thigpen hasn't used him on deep routes much. Bowe is 81 yards shy of 1,000 for the season and will have trouble getting it this week against an improved Bengals' pass defense that ranks 14th in the NFL.
After not catching a pass since Week 12, Bradley returned from a calf injury and finished with four catches for 57 yards last week against Miami. He appears to be recovered from his calf injury, but his progress will be limited this week.
Darling caught his first TD pass of the season last week against Miami, a 33-yard beauty from Tyler Thigpen. But he's been a non-factor for most of this season and shouldn't be active on any fantasy playoff rosters this week.
Tony Gonzalez topped the 1,000-yard mark for the fourth time in his Hall of Fame career last week as he caught seven passes for 64 yards and a TD. He now has 1,005 yards receiving and nine TDs, just one TD shy of his career record. He is finishing strong and will be the prime target this week against an improving Bengals' pass defense.
The Chiefs are the worst in the NFL with nine sacks in 15 games, although they do have 32 forced turnovers. This isn't a worthy fantasy defense as it ranks 30th against the pass and 30th against the run.
The Bengals jumped out to a 7-0 lead over the hapless Browns last week and then just ran and ran and ran to the 14-0 victory. Fitzpatrick attempted just nine passes last week and completed five for 55 yards and a TD. He wasn't a worthy fantasy QB before this and he remains just a one-more-game replacement for Carson Palmer now.
Benson carried the ball an amazing 38 times last week against the Browns and finished with a season-high 171 yards, although he never found paydirt. The Bengals are ready to ride Benson again this week as the Chiefs enter this game ranked 30th in the NFL against the run. Keep him in your lineup again as this is a solid matchup for Benson.
James Johnson relieved Cedric Benson at times last week and finished with three carries for 10 yards and three receptions for 27 yards, but he shouldn't be active in any fantasy playoff lineup this week.
Houshmandzadeh remains eight catches shy of 100 and 96 yards shy of 1,000 yards as he failed to catch a single pass last week at Cleveland. The conditions weren't right for passing the ball last week, but look for Housh to put up better numbers this week against a Chiefs' pass defense that ranks 30th in the NFL.
Johnson caught three passes for 33 yards last week at Cleveland, but is questionable this week with a tight hamstring. It's possible that he might not even play this week, so watch this situation closely before using him. Heck, even healthy, he's a risky play in Week 17.
Henry caught a TD pass for the second straight week, a nice 20-yard corner end zone pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick. He's still an unreliable option in this offense, but if Chad Johnson sits this week he could get more targets.
Leon Hall scored the Bengals' first defensive TD of the season last week when he turned a Ken Dorsey pass into a 50-yard score. It was the 12th INT of the season for the Bengals, who only have 16 sacks in 15 games.