Matchups crucial in Home Team Challenge

Matchups are key in fantasy football, no matter the rules. But in Home Team Challenge, weekly matchups will determine not only weekly success, but who you should select each week for your team. Need an example?

Let's say you're selecting your team heading into Week 7 of the NFL season. You like what Peyton Manning has been doing, and you think coming off a bye week that the Colts' signal-caller will have a big game. As a result, you spend 33 units of your weekly "salary cap" on Manning to make him your starting quarterback.

Manning certainly has that star power that you covet in fantasy football. But is he a sure bet? In Week 7, I don't think so. Indianapolis travels to Jacksonville on Oct. 22 and the Jaguars ranked second in the NFL in total defense last season. Even if Manning plays well, is it likely that he will put up the type of fantasy numbers that would warrant spending 33 units on him? It's debatable, and for 33 units, you don't want to be iffy.

Now let's say you see Seattle's Matt Hasselbeck listed for 25 units. A little high for a guy that heads a run-oriented offense you say?. You could be right, but the same week that Manning will be trying to crack the Jags' defense, Hasselbeck will be taking on the St. Louis Rams, who ranked 23rd in total defense in 2006.

Now you have eight units to spare because you chose Hasselbeck over Manning. And where could you put those? Try running back Larry Johnson, whose Kansas City Chiefs face the Oakland Raiders in Week 7. Last season, Oakland ranked 25th in the NFL in run defense, so Johnson likely will be poised for a big day. Eight units alone won't be enough for Johnson, but perhaps it gave you enough units to be able to afford him.

The point is this: When selecting your team week-to-week on HoustonTexans.com, pay attention to the matchups! Click here for more information.

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