Sneaky Starts: Week 9

Sneaky Starts: Week 9

By John Paulsen (Senior Editor), last update Nov 1, 2013

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John was named the Most Accurate Fantasy Football Expert by FantasyPros for the 2010 and 2014 seasons, finished as runner-up in 2011 and 4th in both 2012 and 2015 for a total of five Top 5 seasons in the last six years. Cumulatively, John was the most accurate expert from 2010-15 while also winning the 2011 Fantasy Sports Trade Association award for the most accurate draft rankings. 

Follow John Paulsen on Twitter: @4for4_John.

All but the luckiest fantasy owners at some point need to find the proverbial diamond in the rough -- a waiver wire or bench player who is capable of putting up some points in a pinch. This weekly feature is dedicated to that part of fantasy football. It's not pretty, but it's part of the game.

In Week 8 our Sneaky Starts included Terrelle Pryor (QB11), Christian Ponder (QB12), Carson Palmer (QB15), Andre Ellington (RB1), Fred Jackson (RB16), Pierre Thomas (RB22), Brandon Bolden (RB23) Peyton Hillis (RB25), Kendall Hunter (RB26), Terrance Williams (WR14), Harry Douglas (WR15), Michael Floyd (WR21), Jarrett Boykin (WR22), Brandon Gibson (WR31), Kris Durham (WR36), Jordan Reed (TE4) and Jared Cook (TE14).

At 4for4, we use Adjusted Fantasy Points Allowed (aFPA) by position heavily in our rankings and analyses. For more detail, click here.

Note: These recommendations do not override our weekly rankings, which are updated throughout the week and weekend.

Raiders QB Terrelle Pryor (vs. PHI)
By now, Pryor is a household name in fantasy circles, but he's still only starting in 18% of ESPN leagues this week despite a terrific matchup with the Eagles, who are #24 in QB aFPA.

Titans QB Jake Locker (@ STL)
The Rams defense (#21 in QB aFPA) is playing better, but Locker (who owns the #10 PPG among QBs) should be able to produce.

Chiefs QB Alex Smith (@ BUF)
Smith has been solid this season, posting the 12th-most fantasy points among QBs and the #15 PPG average. His matchup with the Bills -- #29 in QB aFPA -- is tantalizing.

Eagles QB Nick Foles (@ OAK)
Would the real Nick Foles please stand up? Are we going to see the QB who threw for 296 yards and scored four TDs (including one via run) against the Bucs in Week 6 or will we get the Nick Foles that went 11-of-29 for 80 yards before being concussed against the Cowboys in Week 7?

Bears QB Josh McCown (@ GB)
McCown threw for 204 yards and a TD in 2 1/2 quarters of play against the Redskins in Week 7. He faces an improving yet suspect Packer pass D (#25 in QB aFPA) and has had two weeks to prepare for this start. The Bears are going to have trouble running the ball -- GB is #2 in rush yards allowed -- so Chicago will have to throw the ball to stay in the game.

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