Predictions To Get The Ball Rolling

Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Over the next four months, fantasy football owners everywhere will spend countless hours each week overanalyzing and nitpicking their respective lineups.

Consider Week 1 your sabbatical.

See, no matter how long or often you antagonize yourself over your opening week roster, some things just can't be figured out until the games get underway. That holds especially true of those running backs involved in split- carry situations.

You can read and study all you want, but until a coach is on the field with his players, you just don't know how it is going to go; kind of like an episode of South Park.

The important thing to remember in Week 1 is to go with your gut. If you drafted Hines Ward to be your second wideout, don't start toying with the idea of moving in one of your beloved sleeper picks this early.

Injuries aside, stick with the starting roster you drafted.

Since we can't offer you too much insight heading into the anarchy known as Week 1 -- hey, we helped you out big time before your draft and need a little break -- here are some predictions sure to disappoint you faster than an M. Night Shyamalan movie.

MIKE WILLIAMS WILL BE THE FIRST FREE AGENT WIDE RECEIVER YOU PICK UP

Williams has caught only 44 passes and two touchdown throws since the Detroit Lions drafted him 10th overall in the 2005 draft. However, Pete Carroll won't let a former USC Trojan that he coached fail, unless said player is LenDale White, Matt Leinart, Dwayne Jarrett...

Never mind.

What is important is that the Seahawks have released T.J. Houshmandzadeh, leaving the 6-foot-5 Williams No. 1 on the depth chart and an attractive red zone target for a Seattle club with a weak running back group.

LAURENT ROBINSON WILL BE THE FIRST WIDE RECEIVER YOU DROP

Yes, he is the St. Louis Rams' No. 1 wide receiver, but big deal. He is still part of an offense that ranked dead last in scoring last year, is starting a rookie quarterback and possess a workhorse at running back in the healthy Steven Jackson.

Remember, Donnie Avery played in all 16 games last year and managed just 589 receiving yards and five touchdowns with little help. With Avery lost for the season, Robinson is in the same boat.

LADAINIAN TOMLINSON WILL BE THE BETTER FANTASY BACK THAN SHONN GREENE

I'm not saying that Greene will be backing up Tomlinson anytime soon (although that could happen if Greene struggles early), but LT has looked very good in the preseason and could steal some goal-line touchdowns. Tomlinson is also the better receiver of the two.

Greene has a punishing running style and is bigger than Tomlinson, but Jets head coach Rex Ryan will find himself leaning on the veteran back during a season of high expectations.

What does that mean? Greene owners better have grabbed a hold of Tomlinson too.

MATT FORTE WILL REEMERGE AS A STUD FANTASY RB

Remember when Forte posted 1,238 rushing yards, 63 catches and 12 touchdowns as a rookie in 2008?

Remember last year when he failed to break the 1,000-yard rushing mark and visited the end zone just four times?

Forte found himself at the bottom tier of starting running backs this year, but guess who his new offensive coordinator is? That would be Mike Martz, and we know that Martz loves him some offense.

Martz will keep Forte involved in both the passing and run game, making the third-year back one of this year's top steals.

MATT SCHAUB WILL HAVE MORE FANTASY POINTS THAN DREW BREES

Brees has to slow down at some point, right?

This isn't too big of a leap, but with Brees going in the first round in a lot of drafts, Schaub could end up with the better value. The Houston quarterback posted more passing yards last year (an NFL-best 4,770 to Brees' 4,388) and had just five fewer TD passes with four more interceptions.

A happy Andre Johnson and healthy Owen Daniels is as good as it gets, and Schaub will do with Kevin Walter and Jacoby Jones what Brees does with Robert Meachem and Lance Moore.

Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Michael Rushton at mrushton@sportsnetwork.com.

Follow Michael Rushton on Twitter and Facebook.