Sunday’s Big Fantasy Matcups for Bucs-Cowboys

Buccaneers RB Earnest Graham vs. Cowboys run defense

Graham is a power back going up against three guys in the middle of the Cowboys defense who have great athleticism but lack ideal size and strength. Nose tackle Jay Ratliff and linebackers Bradie James and Zach Thomas usually do much better against quick backs because they move well laterally. Graham could give them a lot of trouble because he runs low and makes a lot of yards after initial contact.

Buccaneers WR Antonio Bryant vs. Cowboys CB Anthony Henry

Bryant makes his return to Texas Stadium on a roll. He leads the Bucs with 31 catches. He can be a true big-play threat, and the Cowboys have not fared well in defending against those types. Henry has not been able to repeat his start from 2007. He doesn’t have an interception yet, and he has just three pass deflections. He doesn’t have top-end speed, and he has found himself playing catch-up too often. Bucs quarterback Jeff Garcia has 10 touchdown passes and four picks in five games all time at Texas Stadium, albeit with different teams.

Buccaneers TE Jerramy Stevens vs. Cowboys secondary

The Cowboys are beaten up in the secondary, and the Bucs are almost certain to take advantage of that. They’ll use their receivers to spread the defensive backs out; they’ll also send Stevens past the linebackers and into the secondary down the seam. The Cowboys will have to be quick to get to Stevens because he does an excellent job of gaining yards after the catch. If he catches the ball on the run, the Cowboys could be in for trouble.

Cowboys OT Flozell Adams vs. Buccaneers DE Gaines Adams

Flozell Adams has had a rough time lately against relentless pass rushers. In the past he had been able to handle speed guys with his long arms, but he has looked slow in the last two games. Gaines Adams has just two sacks, but he is a handful, and he is active. He also has four pass deflections. For the Cowboys offense to function, they need Flozell Adams to play more like the Pro Bowler he was last year. Being at home should help. He struggles with crowd noise on the road.


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