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IDP Notes
Week 4
9/26/07

Quick Hits (Details in individual team notes)
  • Week Four Byes: JAX, NO, TEN, WASH
  • BUF rookie MLB Posluszny breaks arm, to IR
  • MIA MLB Thomas misses game with concussion
  • TB MLB Ruud continues to dominate, leads NFL in tackles
  • KC DE Allen has big season debut after suspension
  • CHI D devastated by injuries to three Pro Bowlers
  • TEN LB Bulluck picks three
  • OAK DE Burgess misses game with calf injury
  • PHI CB Sheppard remains out, FS Dawkins joins him
  • DEN DE Dumervil has another multi-sack game
  • SD LB Wilhelm out with calf injury, Polk gets start
  • After sack party in PHI, DE Cole leads NFL
  • CIN LBs in disarray from injuries
  • Bye comes just in time for banged up WAS D
  • ATL CB Hall costs team with temper
  • JAX DT Henderson out, Knight new SS starter
  • ATL FS Crocker returns, DT Coleman expected this week
  • BAL CB Ivy stars in starting role
  • MIA shuffles secondary
  • NO CB David fractures forearm
  • HOU reserve DT Killings doing well after neck injury
Week 4 Injury Report (available Friday PM)

IDP Depth Chart
ARI | ATL | BAL | BUF | CAR | CHI | CIN | CLE
DAL
| DEN | DET | GB | HOU | IND | JAX | KC
MIA | MIN | NE | NO | NYG | NYJ | OAK | PHI
PIT | STL | SD | SF | SEA | TB | TEN | WAS


Arizona
SS Adrian Wilson led the team with 12 tackles (10 solo), but a personal foul he drew contributed to nullifying a nearly fantastic comeback. Wilson launched himself at BAL TE Todd Heap in an attempt to breakup a pass late in the fourth quarter. Instead of having the ball near midfield with less than a minute to go in a tie game, the 15-yard penalty for helmet-to-helmet gave the Ravens first down at the Arizona 39-yard line. BAL would drive for the winning FG.

ILB Gerald Hayes had 11 tackles (9 solo). LB Karlos Dansby had 7 tackles (5 solo), including 2 sacks.

DE Darnell Dockett had a solo sack, on which he forced a fumble recovered by OLB Bert Berry, and Dockett shared another sack with DE Antonio Smith. Berry missed time with a quad injury during the game, watch his status for next week. Rookie DT Alan Branch (broken hand) remained inactive despite doctorís clearing him to play last week. Gabe Watson continues to start at NT and posted 8 tackles (6 solo).

Atlanta
Despite a breakout game for QB Joey Harrington as a Falcon, the team snatched defeat from the jaws of victory thanks in large part to the temper of CB DeAngelo Hall. After scoring to go up by seven in the third quarter, Hall amassed three penalties totaling 67 yards on the subsequent CAR drive, leading to a tying score for the Panthers. After a 37-yard PI call on first down, Hall had a 15-yard Unsportsmanlike Conduct foul on a short completion. The pivotal penalty came after a third-down sack by DE John Abraham. Another Unsportsmanlike Conduct gave Atlanta a first down on the ATL 14, instead of fourth down on the ATL 29 (or third at the ATL 39, since there was a holding penalty called on the play). Two plays later, the Panthers tied the game. Most of Hallís actions came off a heated battle with star CAR WR Steve Smith, who Hall was covering well, until he was beaten on the first play of the drive and dragged Smith down for the first penalty. Despite surprisingly not being ejected from the game and not removed from it by HC Bobby Petrino, the coach has stated Hall faces ďsubstantial disciplineĒ for his actions. Abraham had another sack in the game and has three on the season so far.

After missing the first two games with a bone bruise, FS Chris Crocker was active and started, pushing Jimmy Williams back to the bench. Crocker had won the job in the preseason and Williams gave no reason the first two games that he should keep it. Crocker had 6 tackles (5 solo), including a sack.

SLB Michael Boley led the team with 9 tackles (7 solo), including an assist on special teams. DT Rod Coleman was inactive again. He missed the first three games recovering from a quad injury and knee scope. Coleman has been cleared to return this week and, when healthy, is one of the top pass rushing interior linemen.

Baltimore
With starting DE Trevor Pryce already out (broken wrist), the team also lost starting CB Samari Rolle to an undisclosed illness. Rolle missed practice on Thursday and Friday, and then was inactive on Sunday. He is expected to play this week. Corey Ivy got his first start in two years in place of Rolle and responded well. Ivy had 5 solo tackles, including a sack (the only one of the day for the defense) for the second consecutive game, and broke up 2 passes. His efforts were key in more than one big play. In the third quarter, AZ WR Larry Fitzgerald made a leaping catch over Ivy and while coming down with Fitzgerald, Ivy wrestled the ball away and recovered the fumble he forced. A review of the play nullified his return, but the turnover was upheld and the Ravens scored a FG on the subsequent drive. One of Ivyís passes defended was breaking up a third down pass in the end zone on the final drive, forcing a FG. Reserve DBs Ronnie Prude Jr. and Gerome Sapp saw more work with Ivy a starter. Dwan Edwards started in place of Pryce, who is expected to miss another 2-4 weeks.

CB Chris McAlister led the team with 6 solo tackles and broke up 2 passes. MLB Ray Lewis had 5 tackles (3 solo).
The team signed veteran LB Nick Greisen, who has starting experience both inside and outside, to improve depth. Former UDFA LB Dennis Haley was released to make room for Greisen. Haley was a regular on special teams and actually had a huge game in his one opportunity as an emergency starter with Ray Lewis out in a win over the Titans last year. Haley was practicing with the first team before Week 2 when there was concern about the triceps injury Lewis suffered.

Buffalo
Another serious injury problem hit the Bills on Sunday. Rookie MLB Paul Posluszny broke his forearm in the second quarter. He was placed on the IR and is done for the season. John DiGiorgio, who was already replacing Keith Ellison and Coy Wire at OLB with the first team, moves to MLB. DiGiorgio was a small school standout we highlighted in the Week One notes. He becomes a top waiver wire pick on a team that will spend a lot of time on defense. DiGiorgio led the team with 12 tackles (8 solo) on Sunday, including sharing a sack with DE Aaron Schobel. Angelo Crowell will remain at WLB until either Keith Ellison or Coy Wire is ready. Neither is expected back for a few more weeks. With a bye Week Six, Iíd expect Week Seven to be the earliest either return. Mario Haggan should remain at SLB until Crowell moves back.

The team was also without CB Terrence McGee, who sat with sore ribs. Jabari Greer started in is place opposite Ashton Youboty, with Kiwaukee Thomas seeing plenty of action as the nickel. Thomas had 10 tackles (6 solo). SS Donte Whitner had 11 tackles (5 solo).

Carolina
SS Chris Harris came up big with 7 solo tackles, including forcing a fumble he recovered himself on Atlantaís first drive from scrimmage. MLB Dan Morgan led the team with 9 tackles (8 solo), but was dinged up after the game with shoulder, leg, and foot problems. Keep an eye on his always-fragile status this week.

DT Kris Jenkins had a sack among his 3 solo tackles. DE Julius Peppers managed to just breakup one pass. Rookie Charles Johnson remains inactive, and Stanley McClover, battling a groin and upper leg injury, was inactive once again too.

Chicago
The QB problem and second-half shellacking by Dallas turned out to be the least of their worries on Monday morning. After already losing playmaking FS Mike Brown and up-and-coming DT Dusty Dvoracek, the Bears D was hit with several other critical injuries. The biggest was DT Tommie Harris, who left in the fourth quarter with a left knee injury. An MRI revealed an MCL sprain and some reports say he could miss up to four weeks. The Bears defense was a shell of itself late last season when Harris was out. Anthony Adams will replace him next to Darwin Walker, leaving the Bears without either opening day starter on their interior until Harris returns. CB Nathan Vasher went down without contact during a cut in third quarter and was writhing in pain on the ground. He eventually left under his own power and is awaiting MRI results for what is labeled a groin/hip abductor injury. This one doesnít look good. Ricky Manning Jr. replaced Vasher and should join the starting lineup while he is out. Manning is a gambler, which may not translate well in real football terms, but gives him some nice fantasy upside. S Brandon McGowan and rookie CB Trumaine McBride will see work in the nickel if Manning starts. WLB Lance Briggs didnít come out for the second half due to a groin injury. Jamar Williams replaced him and led the team with 10 tackles (8 solo). Williams has nice value by default for as long as he replaces Briggs. There were several other injuries to note, although not of as much concern as Harris, Vasher, and Briggs, who could all miss this week. DT Darwin Walker, who played despite a quad injury and was said to be limping after the game. DE Adewale Ogunleye had to leave the game with a hip pointer, but returned shortly after. CB Charles Tillman was banged up, particularly with a sore ankle, but expects to be fine. SS Adam Archuleta, who had his first pick as a Bear in the game and 6 solo tackles, broke his right hand, but is expected to play this week with a cast.

MLB Brian Urlacher had 2 sacks and 3 assists. Urlacher now has 3 sacks in the first 3 games, after having none last year. DE Mark Anderson had his second sack of the season. The Bears blocked a FG for the third consecutive game, by reserve DE Israel Idonije for the second straight game.

Cincinnati
MLB Ahmad Brooks was inactive with a groin injury and Caleb Miller got the start in the middle in his place. However, Miller suffered a back injury in the second quarter and did not return to the game. With Brooks and Miller out, newly acquired LBs Dhani Jones and Anthony Schlegel saw significant action. Schlegel had 2 solo tackles in the middle before leaving with his own back injury. Jones really stepped up, making plays all over the field and posting 7 tackles (6 solo, including 2 on special teams). Brooks is expected back this week. Lemar Marshall, who was doubtful with a groin injury, had to start and was needed to play more than expected due to all the injuries. He had 3 solo tackles, including a safety on a sack. It was the first sack by the Bengals in almost seven years. WLB Landon Johnson, the only healthy LB and thankfully most versatile one, had 6 tackles (5 solo). Johnson appears to be the only Bengal LB safe to start next week. Rashad Jeanty, expected to start at SLB this season, remained inactive and has yet to play this year.

Rookie CB Leon Hall was beaten for a TD on the opening drive of the game, but bounced back with his first career pick. FS Madieu Williams had his first pick of the season off a ball tipped by CB Johnathan Joseph.

Cleveland
SS Sean Jones led the team with 10 tackles (9 solo), broke up 2 passes, and forced a fumble.

ILB Leon Williams continues to encroach on the snaps for ILB Andra Davis. Williams had 5 tackles (3 solo) and Davis had 4 tackles (2 solo). ILB DíQwell Jackson had 9 tackles (5 solo) and OLB Kamerion Wimbley had his first two sacks of the season among his 5 solo tackles. He also forced a fumble.

OLB Antwan Peek continues to start in place of Willie McGinest, who is still a few weeks from returning with a bad back. Peek hurt his foot during the game, but is expected to play this week. CB Gary Baxter remained inactive with bad knees and is out indefinitely.

Dallas
CB Anthony Henry had two picks for the second straight game and leads the NFL with four on the season. He returned one for a TD. SS Roy Williams got his second in as many games and recovered a fumble. CB Terence Newman was active for the first time, missing two games with a plantar fascia tear in his right foot. Newman didnít start, but played the nickel and in dime packages. Jacques Reeves remained the starter opposite Henry. Newman is likely to be back as a starter next week, but the injury is likely to linger throughout the season.

OLB Demarcus Ware terrorized CHI QB Rex Grossman, posting 2 sacks among his 6 solo tackles. Rookie OLB Anthony Spencer also got his first career sack. He continues to start in place of Greg Ellis, who remains inactive and is yet to play this year due to an Achillesí tendon injury.

Denver
DE Elvis Dumervil had 2 sacks for the second straight game and 2 other solo tackles. He forced a fumble and recovered it himself on a sack in the third quarter. Dumervil has picked up the slack for Dwight Freeney as the new undersized terror as a pass rusher. Reserve DT Alvin McKinley had the only other sack, his first as a Bronco. Simeon Rice continues to be a non-factor. Rookie DE Jarvis Moss had 3 tackles (2 solo) in situational play. Starting LDE John Engelberger had 2 tackles (1 solo). Rookie Tim Crowder was inactive again with an ankle sprain. He has yet to play this season after an impressive camp. Dumervil looks to be the only DEN DL to own this season, and a good one at that. Jarvis Moss is still worth a roster spot in dynasty leagues.

FS Nick Ferguson led the team with 11 tackles (9 solo) and forced a fumble recovered by Curome Cox. Cox was in at SS because John Lynch left in the first half with a groin injury. The team is thin at S with Hamza Abdullah out a few weeks with a hip injury. Cox also had 2 tackles (1 solo) and should get the start if Lynch canít go this week.

WLB Ian Gold and MLB D.J. Williams had 8 tackles; Williams also broke up a pass. SLB Nate Webster had 7 tackles.

Detroit
After leading the team with double-digit tackles the first two weeks, MLB Paris Lenon had just one tackle, a sack, on which he forced a fumble. Idrees Bashir, who started at SS over Kennoy Kennedy and split time with him in the game, recovered the fumble. Bashir also recovered a fumble forced by DE Corey White. White started on the right side in place of Kalimba Edwards who was inactive due to a right ankle sprain suffered in the fourth quarter of Week Two. He is day-to-day for this week. With Edwards out, both Jared DeVries and rookie Ikaika Alama-Francis were active and played for the first time this season. Neither appeared in the box score.

WLB Ernie Sims hurt his leg on a 43-yard TD run by PHI RB Brian Westbrook, during which he broke several arm tackle attempts, late in the second half. Sims returned to the game in the second half and finished with a team-high 8 solo tackles. Rookie FS Gerald Alexander had 8 tackles (7 solo), but was poor in pass coverage, as was the whole secondary. After a big game last week, LB Boss Bailey disappeared again, finishing with 1 solo tackle.

Green Bay
The Packers confirmed their defense was for real, joining the tough squads the previous weeks that were able to limit Ladainian Tomlinson. He had just 62 yards rushing on 22 carries, although he did score a TD on a reception.

After a slow start, WLB A.J. Hawk tied for the team lead with 11 tackles (5 solo). SS Atari Bigby also had 11 tackles (9 solo, including 1 on special teams). MLB Nick Barnett had 7 tackles (5 solo) and helped seal the victory with a pick, his second of the season, late in the fourth quarter. He almost returned it for a TD. FS Nick Collins injured his back and briefly left the game on Sunday. Rookie S Aaron Rouse should return from a hamstring injury in a week or two, but he doesnít look to replace either starter soon.

Third down rush specialist DE Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila saw more time with Cullen Jenkins dinged up during the game. Jenkins returned once before leaving for good, with soreness in his side, in the second half. KGB responded with his first two-sack game since 2005. He also forced a fumble on one and had another solo tackle.

Houston
First round pick DT Amobi Okoye had another sack, his third in two games, among his 3 solo tackles. The team had no other sacks and didnít recover any turnovers, but OLB Morlon Greenwood forced a fumble. He also had 6 solo tackles. DT Travis Johnson returned to the starting lineup after missing the last game with a foot injury. MLB DeMeco Ryans led the team with 13 tackles (10 solo).

Reserve DT Cedric Killings suffered a scary neck injury after a collision blocking on a kick-off return. He was taken off the field in a stretcher, but all reports have been positive about him regaining strength and movement after reportedly losing feeling after the hit. He fractured his C-4 (fourth cervical vertebra) in his neck. Although his prognosis so far is positive and he is expected walk again, his football future is likely in doubt.

The safety situation remained the same, with C.C. Brown starting at SS and Von Hutchins at FS. Both Michael Boulware and Will Demps saw snaps on defense. Boulware gave up a TD to IND TE Dallas Clark. Brown had 8 tackles (7 solo).

Indianapolis
Rookie WLB Freddie Keiaho returned from a dislocated right elbow that kept him out of Week Two. He had 5 tackles (4 solo) playing with an arm brace. After a long punt return in the third quarter put HOU in position to close the lead, MLB Gary Brackett grabbed his first pick of the season to swing the momentum back to the Colts. Brackett also forced a fumble and had 9 tackles (7 solo). SLB Rob Morris remained inactive with sore ribs and his status is questionable again this week. Rocky Boiman replaced him and made a diving interception on a ball off the hands of HOU rookie WR Jacoby Jones, in addition to making 2 tackles (1 solo).

CB Marlin Jackson led the team with a game-high, and career-best, 15 tackles (12 solo). Jackson is now averaging 11 tackles per game and is second in the NFL in stops. DE Robert Mathis had his second sack of the season. DE Dwight Freeney remains sackless.

Jacksonville
DT John Henderson was inactive after a concussion in Week Two. Rob Meier started in his place. Despite the absence of Henderson, the Jaguars were able to contain Denverís running game and the offense allowed them to dominate the time of possession, limiting tackles opportunities. CB Brian Williams led the team with 5 tackles (3 solo). DE Reggie Hayward had his first sack of the season, the only one for the Jaguars.

With Gerald Sensabaugh done for the season, Sammy Knight got the start at SS. He had 4 solo tackles and a pick. First round pick Reggie Nelson remains the starter at FS. He had 3 tackles (2 solo, including 1 on special teams) and forced a fumble on kick coverage.

OLB Clint Ingram remains sidelined with an ankle sprain and rookie Justin Durant continues to start in his place.

Kansas City
No one loves home cooking as much as the Chiefs. Since 1990, the Chiefs are an NFL-best 103-34 at home. Despite a minimal offensive effort, the defense held an erratic Viking O and the Chiefs ended a seven-game losing streak dating back to last season, including the playoffs and preseason.

DE Jared Allen had a huge game in his first of the season, returning from a two-game suspension. Allen was a regular visitor in the Vikings backfield, notching 2 sacks among his 8 solo tackles. He also forced a fumble that was recovered by MLB Napoleon Harris in the second quarter. However, the play was challenged and reversed when MIN RB Adrian Peterson ruled down before the fumble after replay. So on the very next play, Allen stripped Peterson again and CB Patrick Surtain recovered. This led to a FG, the first points of the day for KC. Allen also broke up 2 passes, including one on third down deep in KC territory, holding the Vikings to a FG. On the other side, DE Tamba Hali also had 2 sacks. Jimmy Wilkerson returned to a reserve role with Allen back. Allen may be a forgotten man, due to the suspension, in redraft leagues. Check the waiver wire and scoop him up if heís there and you require DLine in your lineup.

OLB Derrick Johnson continues to be an outstanding producer as the typically less fantasy-friendly SLB spot. Johnson led the team with 10 tackles (8 solo). Harris had 4 solo tackles against his old team. Reserve LB Keyaron Fox left the game in the first half with a hamstring injury. With the addition of Donnie Edwards, Fox has seen his role on defense diminish and has been limited to mostly special teams. Edwards had 7 tackles (5 solo).

Miami
MLB Zach Thomas was inactive due to a mild concussion suffered in Week Two, despite reports Friday that his test results were positive. Thomas said if this was a few years ago, he would have played, but all the recent news about concussions have him more cautious. Channing Crowder started in the middle in place of Thomas and had 9 tackles (6 solo). Donnie Spragan replaced Crowder at WLB and led the team with 11 tackles (5 solo). DL Vonnie Holliday had the only sack of the game. The team forced no turnovers.

A secondary restructured last week made their debut. Renaldo Hill moved to SS and Travis Daniels moved over from CB to start at FS, who didnít make a great case for his tackling skills when NYJ RB Thomas Jones fended him off twice on the same run with a stiff arm, knocking him down the second time. Travares Tillman rotated with Daniels. Replacing Daniels at CB was Michael Lehan, who was the most productive of the group with 7 tackles (5 solo). Lehan left the game briefly in the third quarter with a neck problem, but returned and finished the game. His status is in question for this week.

Minnesota
Despite successfully shutting down KC RB Larry Johnson (just 42 yards on 24 carries), the Vikings got no help on offense and couldnít stop the Chiefs through the air on a decisive fourth quarter winning drive. WLB Chad Greenway and SLB Ben Leber each had 8 solo tackles. Greenway also recovered a fumble forced by reserve DT Spencer Johnson on a sack. It was the only sack and only turnover on the day for the defense.

DE Kenechi Udeze was back in the starting lineup and responded with 8 tackles (7 solo). On the other side, Ray Edwards had 3 tackles (2 solo) and 2 QB hits, but couldnít finish either off for a sack. DE Erasumus James remained inactive as he recovers from his knee injury and is not expected to play next week. He has yet to play this year and it is beginning to be a mystery why he wasnít put on the PUP. Despite the absence of James, the strong play of Udeze and Edwards so far this year, as well as the emergence of rookie Brian Robison, has left less work for Darrion Scott.

SS Darren Sharper played through a sore hip and FS Dwight Smith played through a hamstring injury. Reserve S Michael Doss was active after missing the previous game with a calf injury.

New England
CB Asante Samuel had his first pick of the season. He was back in the starting lineup after coming off the bench the first two games. On the other side, CB Ellis Hobbs had his first career sack and forced a fumble on it that DE Jarvis Green recovered. Green also had a sack, his third of the season. Although they donít get too many of them, Hobbs continues to standout as a kick returner, giving him additional value in leagues that count return yardage.

A week after making his first big impact with his new team with a pick returned for a TD, LB Adalius Thomas led the team with 9 tackles (7 solo). Thomas was in on two big stops after an early Patriot turnover that forced BUF to punt from their own end zone on the subsequent drive. He was dinged during the game, and replaced by Junior Seau, but was able to return. Once again, Tedy Bruschi was the least productive fantasy LB of their top five at the position.

SS Rodney Harrison will be out one more game for his four-game suspension for violating the leagueís substance abuse policy. This week should be the last start for James Sanders.

New Orleans
After a couple weeks of abuse, CB Jason David broke up 2 passes, including grabbing his first pick of the season, and had 4 solo tackles. However, the season continued to be rough for David as he suffered a fracture in his left forearm and will miss 4-6 weeks. Fred Thomas, who David replaced as a starter, or Jason Craft is likely to replace David. David has the only two turnovers for the defense this season and they have yet to register a sack.

FS Josh Bullocks had 9 solo tackles and Scott Fujita had 9 tackles (5 solo) to lead the team. It is the second straight week Bullocks has led the team.

New York Giants
SLB Mathias Kiwanuka and third DE Justin Tuck showed the next generation of the Giants front seven is ready to contribute now. Kiwanuka led the team with 9 tackles (7 solo), including an assist on special teams, and had 2 sacks, doubling the Giants total for the season. Kiwanuka forced a fumble on one recovered by MLB Antonio Pierce. Tuck had just 4 solo tackles and a QB hurry in the box score, but one was a stop of WAS RB Ladell Betts on fourth-and-goal on the final play of the game to preserve the victory. The team experimented with Kiwanuka and Tuck inside on passing downs with good results, even though Kiwanuka had the only two sacks. Tuck looks in line for significantly more snaps. There was also talk LB Gerris Wilkinson could share time with WLB Kawika Mitchell, who has struggled in pass coverage. However, Wilkinson remained inactive with a knee injury from the preseason. Mitchell broke up 2 passes and had 2 tackles (1 solo), including the stop on third down right before Tuck on the final WAS drive. DE Osi Umenyiora started again and had 5 tackles (4 solo). It looks like he is past the MCL injury he suffered in the season-opener.

CB Sam Madison looked like he found the fountain of youth, breaking up 3 passes and making 6 solo tackles, including several nice ones of the open-field variety. On the other side, Corey Webster was struggling and benched during the game in favor of rookie Aaron Ross.

New York Jets
After a quiet start to his season, SS Kerry Rhodes picked off a deep pass in the third quarter for the first turnover the team forced this season. He also had 5 tackles (2 solo). FS Erik Coleman led the team with 12 tackles (5 solo). DE Shaun Ellis had the only sack of the season.

Oakland
After leaving the previous game early with a right calf problem, the injury kept DE Derrick Burgess out of the game Sunday. The team hopes heíll be back this week. Rookie Jay Richardson started in his place and had 3 assists. After his big play last week, DT Gerard Warren moved in to the starting lineup in place of Terdell Sands. He responded with 2 solo tackles, including his second sack in as many games on which he forced a fumble. DE Tommy Kelly blocked the potential game-winning FG at the end of the game.

WLB Thomas Howard led the team in tackles again, posting 8 (5 solo). He also had an interception. MLB Kirk Morrison had his third pick of the season and 4 tackles (2 solo). Morrison had two picks in his first two seasons.

SS Michael Huff had 6 tackles (5 solo), but struggled covering CLE TE Kellen Winslow, especially for a player who is supposed to be able to play corner. CB Duane Starks was released to make room on the roster for QB Jamarcus Russell.

Philadelphia
While they allowed a franchise-record 446 passing yards for DET QB Jon Kitna, the defense had nine sacks and forced three turnovers to compliment their own offensive explosion. Starting RDE Trent Cole led the way, exposing injured DET LT Jeff Backus who played through a rib problem. Cole had 3 sacks among his 5 solo tackles and forced a fumble on one of the sacks. Cole leads the league in sacks with five on the season. DT Brodrick Bunkley had the first 2 sacks of his career, including one on the first play from scrimmage by the Lions to set the tone. Reserve DE Juqua Thomas also had 2 sacks, including forcing a fumble and recovering it on one. Thomas has 3 sacks in the last two games and is halfway to the career-high of six he set last year.

FS Brian Dawkins was inactive with the neck stinger he suffered in Week Two. Early reports are heís likely to return Week Four. Quintin Mikell started in his place and had his first career sack among his 3 solo tackles. He also recovered a fumble. CB Lito Sheppard remained inactive with his sprained right MCL and is likely to miss this week, as well. Will James continued to start in his place. CB Sheldon Brown led the team with 7 tackles (6 solo), but was frequently victimized in the big passing day by the Lions. Mikell also doesnít provide the same help in centerfield that Dawkins does. SS Sean Considine had his first pick of the season in the end zone.

With only 12 rushing attempts by the Lions, there were not a lot of tackles to go around for the front seven. MLB Omar Gaither had just 1 solo. Unable to get in the sack party, LDE Jevon Kearse and back-up DE Darren Howard totaled one pass defended (by Howard) for the day. Rookie reserve LB Stewart Bradley broke a bone in his hand during the game. The injury is not serious, but he had surgery Monday and is likely to miss at least a week.

Pittsburgh
The game was well in hand late in the fourth quarter, despite the defense not forcing a turnover to that point. With under five minutes left, nickel CB Bryant McFadden picked off SF QB Alex Smith and returned it 50 yards for his first career TD.

ROLB James Harrison played through a sore neck and had 7 tackles (5 solo), including a solo and assist on special teams. Rookie OLB LaMarr Woodley still saw more time, including at the expense of Clark Haggans, and responded with his second sack in as many games. ILB James Farrior had a sack among his 3 solo tackles and had 2 passes defensed.

SS Troy Polamalu led the team with 8 tackles (5 solo) and broke up a pass. After not allowing a 100-yard rusher all of last year, the defense has kept the streak alive so far this year.

St. Louis
WLB Pisa Tinoisamoa missed his second game due to an ankle sprain in Week One. He is expected to return this week. Chris Draft replaced him again and had 5 tackles (4 solo). MLB Will Witherspoon (5 solo), CB Ronald Bartell (6 solo), and SLB Brandon Chillar (3 solo) all had 6 tackles to lead the team. Chillar also forced a fumble.

Rookie Clifton Ryan continues to be a productive part of the interior rotation. He had 2 solo tackles and forced a fumble. Over the last two weeks he has 6 solo tackles, 2 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery. Reserve DE Trevor Johnson had the only sack in the game.

CB Tye Hill is expected to miss at least two more games with fractures in his lower back and CB Fahkir Brown has one more game to serve of his four-game suspension for violating the leagueís substance-abuse policy.

San Diego
WILB Matt Wilhelm was inactive with a strained calf, the same one that cost him most of the preseason. He is expected to miss this week, as well. Stephen Cooper moved over to WILB for Wilhelm and Carlos Polk got the start at SILB. Tim Dobbins, who replaced Wilhelm during Week 2 when he was injured, struggled in pass coverage. However, Dobbins also saw work. Polk and Dobbins both finished with just 1 solo tackle. Cooper had 6 tackles (3 solo). On the outside, LB Shaun Phillips led the team with 6 tackles (5 solo), including 1.5 sacks. The shared sack was with DE Igor Olshansky. OLB Shawne Merriman had just 2 assists. Rookie LB Anthony Waters was still inactive, as he has been each game this season, despite Wilhelm being out.

NT Jamal Williams started and played through his hyperextended his left elbow. The DLine was hit with another injury when DE Luis Castillo left in the second quarter with a foot sprain. Brandon McKinney and Jacques Cesaire replaced him. Castillo is expected to play this week.

San Francisco
OLB Manny Lawson tore his ACL in practice last week and was placed on the IR. Journeyman Hannibal Naives replaced Lawson in the starting lineup. Naives responded with his first solo sack since 2003. He has just 4.5 for his career. Naives forced a fumble on the sack and recovered it himself, one of the few 49er highlights on the day and the only turnover they forced.

SS Michael Lewis led the team with 9 tackles (5 solo), including an assist on special teams. He shared a sack with DE Marques Douglas, who had 8 tackles (7 solo). First round pick LB Patrick Willis had 7 tackles (5 solo) and broke up a pass. It was the first week he didnít lead the team in tackles this season. Reserve S Keith Lewis sustained a concussion Sunday and S Mark Roman injured his elbow. Both are expected to play this week.

Seattle
OLB LeRoy Hill returned to the starting lineup after missing a game with a foot injury and had 9 tackles (7 solo) and forced a fumble. Both FS Brian Russell and SS Deon Grant had a pick. Grant also had 9 tackles (8 solo). CB Marcus Trufant had 9 tackles (8 solo), as well.

DT Rocky Bernard and reserve DT Brandon Mebane each had a sack. DE Darryl Tapp has been a disappointment as a pass rusher so far, with just a half-sack on the season after three in the preseason.

Tampa Bay
MLB Barrett Ruud continues to be one of the most productive defensive players in the league. He led the team with 11 tackles (8 solo) and grabbed his first career interception. He now has double-digit tackles and has been involved in at least one turnover in each game so far this season, as well as leading the NFL in tackles. SS Jermaine Phillips had an athletic pick at the sideline and nickel CB Phillip Buchanon also had an interception in the end zone, although he made a bad decision to try and run it out. S Will Allen (CB, FS) was inactive after not being on the injury report. He did collide with WR Ike Hilliard in practice last Wednesday, but has also lost his starting job to rookie Tanard Jackson and Allen may not be adding value on special teams. Rookie reserve S Sabby Piscitelli fractured his foot on special teams and is expected to miss the rest of the season, so the team will still need Allen this year.

Rookie DT Greg Peterson shared his first career sack with DE Kevin Carter. WLB Derrick Brooks had 8 tackles (6 solo) and forced a fumble.

DE Patrick Chukwurah remained inactive with a MCL injury for the third straight game, although he returned to practice last week and is expected to play this week. Rookie DE Gaines Adams remains a back-up and had just 2 tackles (1 solo).

Tennessee
NO QB Drew Brees just couldnít pick up OLB Keith Bulluck in his peripheral vision on Monday Night. Bulluck had three picks, in addition to 4 solo tackles. Reserve S Vincent Fuller also had his first career pick and returned it 61 yards for a TD to seal the victory late in the fourth quarter. The Titans had a fifth turnover, a fumble forced on the first sack of the season by DE Travis LaBoy that DT Randy Starks recovered. It was the only sack in the game for TEN.

OLB David Thornton led the team in tackles again with 13 (10 solo). He has double-digit tackles in back-to-back games.

Washington
Rookie SS LaRon Landry led the team with 12 tackles (6 solo), including an assist on special teams. MLB London Fletcher had 10 tackles (5 solo), an interception, and recovered a fumble forced by DE Andre Carter on a sack, the second of the season for Carter.

The defense had several nicks and bruises that their bye week came just in time for. Landry had his hand wrapped for a cut after the game, but is fine. FS Sean Taylor limped off the field in the first half with a leg injury, but returned and had a pick in the second half. He appears to be fine. WLB Rocky McIntosh, who has exploded on the scene the first couple of weeks, had problems with both shoulders during the game and finally left in the fourth quarter. He had 4 tackles (3 solo) and a pass defended. Rookie H.B. Blades replaced McIntosh and finished with a solo tackle on defense and an assist on special teams. He was diagnosed with a pinched nerve in his shoulder and after an MRI on Monday, was told to avoid contact for two weeks. With a bye this week, he may not actually miss a game, but watch for his status leading up to their Week 5 game. DT Cornelius Griffin left in the fourth quarter with a leg injury. He bruised his right ankle and an MRI revealed he has torn cartilage in his right knee. The injury will require surgery after the season, but the current expectation is he will be able to play the rest of the season. DE Phillip Daniels, already playing with a foot injury, bruised his back in the game. He is expected to be fine after the bye. SLB Marcus Washington continues to play with pain from a right elbow he dislocated in the preseason. CB Fred Smoot was inactive for the second straight game with a hamstring injury, but is expected back after the bye.