Fantasy Football 2011: Are Any Redskins Smart PLays Against Cowboys?

The Redskins head down to Dallas for a Monday Night matchup. Are there any players on the offense worth starting in your fantasy league?

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2011 Fantasy Football Week 1 Start/Sit: Santana Moss, Ahmad Bradshaw, Tim Hightower

We give you fantasy football advice on which players are worth putting in your starting lineup for the Giants vs. Redskins game.

The New York Giants ranked 23rd against the pass in the preseason, and they'll be missing a sizable number of players from their secondary on Sunday as cornerbacks Terrell Thomas, Bruce Johnson, Prince Amukamara and Brian Witherspoon will all sit out with injuries, as well as lethal pass rushers Justin Tuck and Osi Umenyiora. Mike Shanahan will look to test out his new starting quarterback Rex Grossman, and Grossman's top target will be Santana Moss. The veteran wide receiver has averaged over 1,000 yards the past three seasons, and there's no reason to think he won't get there again. Moss is the 25th ranked wide receiver by Numberfire this week, and should be starting for your team.

Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw is also a must-start against the Washington Redskins defense that was ranked 26th against the run in 2010. While you may think that the Redskins defense has been upgrade this offseason, the only change to their linebacking core is the addition of a pass-rushing rookie, so they may still struggle against the run early in the season. Numberfire projects Bradshaw to earn 12.55 fantasy points this week, and he's a safe bet to do well for your team.

We're less optimistic on Tim Hightower though, who had an electrifying preseason in Washington, but didn't exactly set the NFL ablaze in Arizona. Hightower could be a breakout fantasy star this year, so you were smart to draft him if you did. But the conservative fantasy player should sit Hightower for Week 1 until we figure out if he will actually be the feature back for the Redskins, or if he'll be splitting a considerable amount of time with Ryan Torain and Roy Helu.

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Fantasy Football 2011 Preview, Washington Redskins Vs. New York Giants

The Washington Redskins will host the New York Giants in Week 1 of the NFL season this Sunday, also known as the first day of the rest of your fantasy lives. The Redskins should have some intriguing plays in Week 1 because the Giants have lost a number of important players on their defense to injuries at different points throughout their preseason campaign. Let's take a look at some of the more prominent players on the Redskins offense and how they might fare this weekend, fantasy-wise of course.

Rex Grossman: Maybe he'll get some extra mojo from winning his battle against John Beck for the starting quarterback job in the preseason, but when it comes down to it, I wouldn't play him unless I didn't have a better option. Not that I think he is going to do a crummy job, I just think that you probably have a better quarterback option on your team for this week/season.

Tim Hightower: Hightower is someone I can actually see having a pretty good game in this one. He had a very impressive preseason, and a lot of the losses the Giants suffered this preseason were along their front seven. I know Shanahan gave Grossman the rock, but I still don't expect him to throw the ball all over the field. I think Hightower will get a steady workload in this one, and when trying to pick a running back, that's all you can ask for.

Santana Moss: It doesn't take a fantasy genius to know that if I don't like the quarterback in this one because I expect a minimal passing attack, then I also won't like the main wide receiver. Because of who he is he is probably a must-start for you, but I wouldn't expect him to win your week.

Chris Cooley/Fred Davis: Cooley is coming off an injury and we have no idea how much Fred Davis will be involved. You need to have a better tight end option than these guys.

For more on fantasy football and who you should try to play this week, head over to new SB Nation partner NumberFire.

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Mike Shanahan Likely To Name Tim Hightower Starting Running Back

When the post-lockout preseason finally began, it was assumed Washington Redskins running back Ryan Torain would be the starter for head coach Mike Shanahan. But a funny thing happened in August. Torain injured himself (again), and newly acquired Tim Hightower performed extremely well in game action, meaning it is highly likely the Arizona Cardinals' cast-off will be the opening day starter for the Redskins. Via Joseph White of the AP:

"He's done a good job," coach Mike Shanahan said Saturday. "I'm not going to say he's our starter, but if you were betting in Vegas you'd probably bet in that direction."

Hightower was originally obtained to serve as a back-up and compliment to Torain, but his play in the preseason has been excellent, both running the ball and picking up the rush. Hightower has 170 yards on 25 carries (a gaudy 6.8 ypc), scoring two touchdowns in three preseason contests.

Torain will finally see the field in Washington's preseason finale against he Tampa Bay Buccaneers, perhaps battling Evan Royster and Roy Helu Jr. for the role of backup to Hightower.

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Fantasy Football 2011 Rankings: Tim Hightower Might Be Worth A Late Gamble

The Redskins don't have a lot of players that will make an impact on the Fantasy Football world this coming season, but there is one running back who might be worth a gamble in the later rounds. Tim Hightower hasn't been in Washington for very long, but he has made a pretty big impact in the preseason games the Redskins have played thus far. NFL.com has a ranking of running backs for the upcoming season and Hightower comes in at #34.

This seems a little low to me based on what Hightower has looked like this year. I always preach that the most important thing to look for when picking an running back in the later rounds is opportunity. Hightower should get the bulk of the carries for the Redskins this year, so he has a lot of value.

If Ryan Torain comes back healthy, which is a stretch, then it complicates things. But if Hightower is still the feature back when the regular season rolls around, he could be a very productive fantasy back.

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Fantasy Football Sleepers: Ryan Torain, Santana Moss Could Be Productive This Year

Getting ready for your fantasy football draft? So are we. Here’s a look at what Redskins players could emerge as fantasy sleepers this season.

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