Big Title Threats:
Dinara Safina 
Why? -- She's been the most solid out of all the top women this year, the most consistent. Her losses: Dementieva, S. Williams, Razzano, Stosur, Azarenka, Kuznetsova. Outside of Razzano and Stosur, she's lost to other top 10 players 3 times on hard court, but only once on clay. She defeated Venus Williams, Kuznetsova, Radwanska, and Zheng on the stuff, and she's looking to be a great set-up for her clay court season. She's defending finalist on Roland Garros, but with very few of the other top women coming close to playing well right now, it could be her time.
Svetlana Kuznetsova 
Why? -- She's won Stuttgart and got to the finals of Rome, defeating Dementieva, Safina, Pennetta, Azarenka, and Jankovic along the way. While she still isn't the most consistent with her results, it's the best clay results she's had for a while. Yes, she lost to Bondarenko in Madrid, but who didn't lose in Madrid, really? She's been to the final before at Roland Garros, and was a semifinalist last year, and she's lost to the eventual champion every time but last year.
Venus Williams 
Why? -- She managed to gain her highest seeding at Roland Garros for a long, long, long time (2004 to be exact, when she was seeded 3 again). Last time she was seeded that high, she got to the quarterfinals on a Roland Garros journey that was a complete mess. She's gotten to the quarterfinals a few times at the French (2000, 2004, 2006), one final (2002), and some really spotty 1R-4R losses (1999, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2008). She's playing better than her 2004 and 2006 runs on clay right now, except for that horrendous loss to Kleybanova. If Venus can get a draw with no Pennetta round of 16, I have a feeling she will rise to the occasion.
Elena Dementieva 
Why? --- 2004 - Finalist, 2005--4R, 2006--3R, 2007--3R, 2008 -- QF. She is very capable of getting to the second week, it's just a matter of getting there. 2006 and 2007 were the worst results she had since she displayed her utter incompetence on clay in 1999-2001. She's a great mover, but my only beef with putting her here may be her second week swagger, of which she has none. When she gets to the second week of majors, she seems surprised that she's even there. That being said...it's better than really leaving one of the slumping Serbs or Caro and Vika in this slot.
Jelena Jankovic 
Why? -- She's been a semifinalist here twice, just like Kuznetsova. But unlike Kuznetsova, she's a wonderful mover with no real weapon, but still a decent amount of pace. She can defend people to fits on the court (if you want an example, her 3R against Venus Williams in 2007 is a big big big example). She's still falling apart towards the finish line, and with less confidence than her U.S. Open run, she seems to not be as strong of a contender as she usually is. It's up to her to prove me wrong.
Caroline Wozniacki and Victoria Azarenka [9 and 10]
Why? -- Caroline has gotten to the final of Madrid this week (match still in progress), and she shows that she defends well, but that's about it...I love her as a person, but her tennis game really can sometimes leave a lot to be desired. She's not weak, but she chooses to play strokes and a style that allows people to think so. Victoria on the other hand swings at any and all shots that come to her, which is a big mistake on clay where the play gets dragged all over the court. Still, she's a big fighter, both of them are, and I feel at least one of them could be a deep runner into this draw.
Prediction: Quarterfinalist for both (hopefully), more likely for Wozniacki than Azarenka at the moment
Ana Ivanovic 
Why? -- She's the defending champion, and a former number one who really likes clay...why isn't she ranked higher on this list? Well, a few people come to mind...Jie Zheng, Julie Coin, Tamira Paszek, Agnes Szavay, Agnieszka Radwanska. No, this is not a list of scrubs...it's a list of scrubs who have beaten Ana Ivanovic as reigning French Open champion. She is not handling her expectations well, you can see it in her ballooning weight (she was scary thin at Wimbledon, then looked like she did in 2007 in Australia), her buggy-whip forehand, and negative or over the top emotions...all of which she did not have pre French Open 2008. Such a sweet girl totally was decimated when she suddenly became everyone's target. I feel Court Philippe Chatrier, the court that's been kind to her, should give her some confidence, she's won there, she's got Parisian fans who honestly adore her, but as the 8th seed, she's going to draw an in-form Safina, a for once almost decent clay Venus Williams, and Elena Dementieva and Serena Williams, both of whom have been very very very sketchy. She needs to pray to the Roland Garros gods she draws Serena's quarter...it seems to be her good luck charm.
Prediction: 4th Round or Quarterfinal.
These People Can Win Rounds, but Not the Tournament This Year.
Serena Williams , Aggie Radwanska, Nadia Petrova, Maria Sharapova, Amelie Mauresmo, Patty Schnyder, Carla Suarez Navarro