Start/Sit Week 13
November 30, 2011 | Kevin Hall
To call these final two weeks in fantasy football nerve-wracking would be an understatement. It’s like watching your kids, or at least kids you’ve babysat for the last 3 months, perform a tightrope act over a pool full of starving sharks. That being said, since you’re so nervous about your lineup, let me go out on a limb for you. That way you can find solace in blaming me for your loss instead of yourself.
Eli Manning (vs. GB)– I don’t know who had a quieter 400 yard game last week, Vince Young or Eli Manning? Eli is playing out of his mind this year and that should continue against a Packers team that’s allowed 300+ yards to 6 out of the 11 QBs they’ve faced this year.
Tim Tebow (@Min)- Hands down the biggest enigma of the NFL season. I’m a huge Tebow fan, but he really doesn’t throw a football well…like, at all. Luckily, he’s the size of Von Miller (dead serious, both 6’3 and 236) and runs like Willis McGahee. He’s averaging 70 rushing yards a game and is facing the perfect team to hide his passing deficiencies, the Vikings. Minnesota has allowed the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this year.
Matthew Stafford (@NO)- May be an obvious name, but some may be wary after that 4 turnover Thanksgiving debacle. Good news, he has the perfect matchup to alleviate his owners’ woes. The Saints have the 27th ranked pass defense and the Lions should be down and throwing all day. Add those together and it comes out to at least a 300 yard, 2 touchdown day for the former Bulldog.
Matt Forte (vs. KC)- Another must-start who’s been underwhelming lately. He’s at home against a Chiefs team that gives up an average of 19 fantasy points a game to opposing running backs.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis (vs. Ind)- Literally every Patriots offensive player might score a touchdown this Sunday and last time I checked, Law Firm is still on the Patriots.
LeGarrette Blount (Vs. Car)- Back to back 100 yard games and now he faces a terrible, awful Panthers defense that allows the most fantasy points to opposing running backs. Fun fact: Carolina has failed to give up at least 100 rushing yards only ONCE this season.
DeAngelo Williams (@TB)- You know who’s second behind the Panthers in points allowed to running backs? The Bucs. There…shall…be…running in this game!
All Packers and Giants Receivers- This is a matchup of the 26th and 31st ranked pass defenses, two elite quarterbacks, and a ton of talented wideouts. I think the over/under of this game is in the vicinity of 96.5. Nicks, Cruz, Ballard, Nelson, Jennings, Finley start them all without thinking about it.
Steve Smith (@TB)- Aqib Talib is an underrated cornerback, but Cam should be able to throw all over Tampa and I have to think Smitty is going to get behind the Bucs’ awful secondary a couple of times.
Laurent Robinson (@Ari)- No wide receiver, other than maybe Victor Cruz, is as hot as Robinson right now. He’s scored 7 touchdowns in the past five weeks and in my opinion, has far surpassed Dez Bryant as the Cowboys receiver you want when Austin is out, and possibly even when he comes back. The Cardinals and their 25th ranked pass defense are probably not going to be the team that ends his streak either.
Brent Celek (@Sea)– Vince Young is starting again this Thursday and VY loves himself some Celek. In Young’s two starts, Celek has caught 11 passes for 135 yards. Not eye-popping numbers, but between Young looking his way, a coach that refuses to run the ball, and a Seahawks squad that’s allowed 4 touchdowns to tight ends in its past four games, Celek is ripe for a breakout performance.
Aaron Hernandez (vs. Ind)- The Colts are surprisingly good against opposing tight ends, which is why I think Gronkowski might actually struggle for once. However, Hernandez has the speed to get deep on the Colts’ cover-2 and I think he does so early and often.
Patriots D/ST (vs. Ind)- This D/ST might actually be on your waiver wire so go check it right now before you finish this article. I’ll wait…The Patriots defense is bad, but not nearly as bad as the Colts offense. I’ve been following the “start D/STs against Indy” strategy this year and it’s worked like a charm.
Matt Ryan (@Hou)- Ryan was in my trade market column as a guy to go after because he does have a solid schedule down the stretch, but this was the one speed bump. No matter who is starting at quarterback for the Texans, it’s not going to change the fact that they have the #1 defense in the league. Not to mention, since they ARE down to their third-string QB, the Falcons won’t have to be playing catch up like they might have against an offense with Schaub at the helm.
Ben Roethlisberger (vs. Cin)- This is going to be a typical AFC North smash-mouth matchup with lots of running and therefore, little passing. It doesn’t help that Cincinnati has only allowed 300 yards passing in one game this season.
Michael Bush (@Mia)- Bush has been red hot since DMC went down so you kind of have to start him, but temper expectations as the Dolphins have the 2nd stingiest defense to opposing running backs. Miami has only given up TWO rushing touchdowns all year and hasn’t allowed one in 7 straight. For those of you who are new to football, that’s really really good.
Steven Jackson (@SF)- Remember that time I said the Dolphins had a really good rush defense and haven’t allowed a rushing touchdown in 7 straight and you were all like “Wow, what a great stat!” and I was all like “Thanks reader!” Well, the 49ers haven’t allowed a rushing touchdown all YEAR! That makes every other rushing defense bow to this squad.
Beanie Wells (vs. Dal)- Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me; fool me as much as Beanie has? I hate you, never talk to me again.
Steve Johnson (vs. Tenn)- Owners are going to be all excited about what he did last week against Revis, forget how terrible he’s been all year and how he’s facing a Titans defense that’s only allowed 3 receiving touchdowns in its past 6 games.
Vernon Davis (vs. Stl)- This looks like a tasty matchup for Davis, but the Rams boast the toughest fantasy defense to opposing tight ends, only allowing one tight end touchdown all year. They’ve also refused to allow a double-digit performance by a tight end. Frank Gore is the niner you want in this one.
Owen Daniels (vs. Atl)- Hasn’t had a double-digit game since week 4 and now he has a third-string rookie throwing it to him.
Follow Kevin Hall on Twitter to ask him questions before week 13 and inevitably make fun of his terrible choices in this column after week 13: @Kevin__Hall