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Fantasy Factor: Shuffling for bye weeks and playing the long game

The playoff chase is heating up, but four more teams have a bye. It's time to make moves. Tight end and running back will remain tricky areas, and you'll have to take risks, but you can survive.

The RB market is so picked over, and it's been tough all year, but familiar names are on a lot of waiver wires. Darren McFadden will start for an interesting Cowboys offense. He has been solid at times this year, and you have to figure that the Cowboys will need to run the ball to survive without Tony Romo. Ronnie Hillman is still available in many leagues. Pick him up; he continues to produce with the touches he gets, and he could be the best starter out there.


While the Broncos had a bye week, Oakland got back to .500, and Kansas City ended its losing streak while San Diego continued its draught. (All photos by AP Images)

Charcandrick West** had a nice bounce-back game against Pittsburgh last week for the Chiefs with 110 rushing yards, 19 receiving yards and one rushing touchdown. The Steelers defense has been tough on running backs—they allow just 99.7 rushing yards per game, 10th in the NFL—but West was good enough to outplay their average. Play him again this weekend as the Chiefs face Detroit.

Another new starter will be Alfred Blue with Arian Foster done with an Achilles injury. And though I don't know if he'll produce this week against a stout Broncos defense, James Starks is a good add from Green Bay.

At wide receiver, Stefon Diggs continues to gain buzz in Minnesota (two consecutive games with 100 receiving yards), and he seems to be the deep threat for Vikings offensive coordinator Norv Turner. That could mean some long touchdown catches. Grab him while you can.

Michael Floyd is gaining steam in Arizona again with two straight games with touchdown receptions. After a rough start, this will be the second week in a row that I put him on the add list.

There is also Brandon LaFell for New England, who returned from a foot injury that kept him out of training camp and the first six weeks. He had a tough first game back, but was targeted eight times. He should gain numbers as he gets in sync again.

Tight end has been the toughest position to figure out this year. Detroit's Eric Ebron is a starter, and worth a desperation risk with 268 receiving yards and three touchdowns in five games. The Lions just fired their offensive coordinator and offensive line coaches, so that might lead to a week of inspired play.

Washington'sJordan Reed is a down-the-road addition. He and Kirk Cousins are like peanut butter and jelly in the red zone, when he's healthy. The Skins are on a bye, though.

Also don't be afraid to play Big Ben, if Roethlisberger going to go. He may be a week away, but the Steelers need to get something going, and that may mean less rest for Pittsburgh's No. 7.

As for the Broncos, after a bye get Hillman, WRs Demaryius Thomasand Emmanuel Sanders, and QB Peyton Manning in the game. Home cooking should help these last 10 games of the year. Plus, now we'll see what they tinkered with over the bye.

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