Alive: Najeh Davenport (Brewmaster: Fast Willie Parker)
Davenport found the end zone twice in Week 5, bringing his season touchdown total to three. You laugh and say that Davenport is just a short-yardage specialist and touchdown vulture, but he has put up games of 43, 46, 47 and 58 yards so far this season, while averaging a ridiculous 7.5 yards per carry. Touchdown vulture he is not, my friends. But he does remain Willie Parker's backup, which knocks his value down a few pegs.
Or does it? We are here to help. Najeh Davenport, are you for real?
Hector: Yes, he is, which is a real pain. Remember that game when Jerome Bettis had five carries for one yard and three scores? That was great for anyone who started The Bus, which was, well, nobody. You can't start a goal-line specialist over any back who gets regular carries. Even Earnest Graham and Cedric Benson are smarter plays. At least with them, you know for sure they will touch the ball. That yards per carry average is ridiculous because it's not coming from a large enough sample size to mean anything. And like Kenton Keith's, these yards are mostly coming late when the game is already decided. The touchdowns are nice, but you can't hang your hopes on the possibility of Hines Ward, Santonio Holmes or Parker getting tackled inside the 5-yard line each week.
Victor: Tell you what, I am going with Davenport being "for real" here. He has gotten 40-plus yards four out of five games and has more rushing yards this season than Maurice Jones-Drew. It's five games in, people! Yes, Davenport has been a fantasy bust in years past, but he has proved -- in more than one-third of the season -- to be at least a somewhat effective fantasy weapon. He will get vulture touchdowns, might get 40 rushing yards per game (we have no reason to believe he won't just yet) and stands to benefit from any injury Fast Willie might suffer in the future. As far as handcuffs go, he is a must-have. But he's as good of a touchdown vulture as any I've seen this year.