Who's Stock is Rising?

Brandon Meriweather, New England Patriots safety: Despite his late-game heroics Monday night, can you really say Tom Brady's stock improved? In the absence of so many retired veterans on the Patriots' defense, Meriweather showed signs he's ready to step into a leadership role.

Meriweather was credited with a team-high eight tackles against the Bills. He threw Fred Jackson for a 4-yard loss and made the initial hit that stood McKelvin up before he fumbled.

Reggie Wayne, Colts WR: Wayne technically became the team’s top receiver in 2007, but the real takeover over the past two years as the team adjusted to an injured, less than effective Marvin Harrison took a while. Sunday, with Harrison gone and Anthony Gonzalez out early with a right knee injury, Wayne was practically unstoppable.

Deep, short, in the middle of the field and on the perimeter, he was getting a steady diet of throws from Peyton Manning and making the most of them. He’ll need to continue that production while rookie Austin Collie and second-year man Pierre Garcon work as the second and third wideouts.

Jeremy Shockey: Saints TE: Shockey’s been a target for ridicule throughout much of his career. Some of it’s due to injuries and some of it's because of his behavior.

But you can never forget that he’s an enormous talent. He caught two touchdowns on Sunday, which is two more than he had all of last year. Makes you wonder what’s possible if he can stay healthy all season.

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