Week 12 Starts and Sits
November 23, 2016 | Jackson Safon
Time for a dress rehearsal. While bye weeks aren’t done, because for whatever reason the Titans and Browns have next week off, there aren’t any this week which means we finally get to see what your full team looks like again. No byes almost makes it tougher deciding who to start and sit because you have the full selection of options.
These last two weeks are huge in terms of playoff seeding so let’s get to it.
Start: Russell Wilson @ TB
Before the season, Wilson was a consensus top-3 fantasy quarterback, but it just hasn’t panned out that way. Nagging injuries really slowed the dynamic quarterback, but now that he’s healthy, I’m confident rolling him out as a weekly top-5 option. How do I know he’s fully healthy? Because the Seahawks think so.
Obviously Wilson owners were ecstatic about him catching a touchdown last week, earning significantly more points than he would’ve if he threw that score. But what should excite them even more is that the Seahawks coaching staff thought Wilson was healthy enough to use him in that fashion. I don’t really see that happening without believing he’s fully healthy. Wilson is a must-start every week.
Other starts: Eli Manning @ Cle and Colin Kaepernick @ Mia
Sit: Blake Bortles @ Buf
I’m done. I was by no means a Bortles supporter going into the season, but he’s had a couple opportunities recently to get back on track, and I was hopeful he could do so. He didn’t. He’s definitely gotten unlucky recently with a few odd bounces, but he’s also just not good.
While Buffalo isn’t an amazing defense, their pretty solid and they should be able to get some pressure on Bortles, where he struggles. He’s just not very good at football and while that doesn’t always mean no fantasy success, it means he can’t be trusted week to week.
Other sits: Carson Wentz vs. GB and Ryan Fitzpatrick vs. NE
Start: Rob Kelley @ Dal
Fat Rob looks pretty pretty real. While the numbers are obviously inflated because of last week, in his three games as a starter Kelley is averaging 107 yards and 1.3 touchdowns per game on 4.86 yards per carry. Plus, in that time he’s been towards the top of the league in yards after contact, so he’s making it happen for himself a lot of the time.
I don’t expect him to surpass his 31 points of last week possibly ever again. But that doesn’t mean he’s not valuable. The Cowboys have a pretty average defense and I think Kelley has a chance to eat again.
Other starts: Frank Gore vs. Pit and Jordan Howard vs. Ten
Sit: Tevin Coleman vs. Ari
He’s back at practice so I’m sure there are plenty of owners itching to get Coleman back in their lineup. I would hold off though. In his first game back I would expect him to be eased back in the fold and any reduction in touches is a dangerous place for Coleman. He only had over 100 total yards twice in his seven games this year, so losing even a few touches could hurt his production.
Add that to the fact that the Cardinals defense is pretty darn solid, and I’d stay away from Coleman this week. Arizona has actually allowed the fewest fantasy points to running backs this entire season, according to Yahoo!, so you should be able to find better options.
Other sits: Theo Riddick vs. Min and Dion Lewis @ NYJ
Start: Rishard Matthews @ Chi
If Matthews continues on this tear, he could be in contention for fantasy MVP of the season. He only has one single digit fantasy output (PPR scoring) his last eight weeks, averaging 15 per game. He’s just really good and he has the complete trust of arguably the hottest quarterback in the league in Marcus Mariota.
The Bears have also allowed the third most fantasy points to wide receivers this year, so Matthews has a great chance to keep it up. The over/under in this game is painfully low, but Matthews has been so consistent and has a great matchup so I’d start him with confidence.
Other starts: Kelvin Benjamin @ Oak and Kenny Britt @ NO
Sit: Golden Tate vs. Min
Tate’s usage is extremely hard to predict right now. After 11 receptions two weeks ago, he only had three this week on four targets. Tate is obviously a much safer play in PPR than standard, but he’s still a pretty serious risk. The Vikings defense isn’t the overwhelming unit it was earlier in the year, but they’re still a scary bunch.
This game has the third lowest over/under of the week so touchdowns are going to be tough to come by. I just don’t know what’s going on with the Detroit passing game so I’m avoiding Tate this week.
Other sits: Randall Cobb @ Phi and Marvin Jones vs. Min
Start: Eric Ebron vs. Min
So I just spent a couple paragraph’s explaining why I don’t want Golden Tate, Detroit’s slot receiver. But yes, I do still want to start Eric Ebron. In PPR scoring, Ebron’s lowest weekly output is eight points. The guy is a remarkably consistent player right now and Stafford loves him. Ebron has at least five targets every week and it’s paying off with consistent production.
Plus, while the Vikings defense and secondary is obviously outstanding, their defense against tight ends isn’t quite as strong. The Vikings have been allowing the 11th most fantasy points to tight ends this season, and I think Ebron could help add to that total.
Other starts: Travis Kelce @ Den and Gary Barnidge vs. NYG
Sit: Dennis Pitta vs. Cin
Because I’m saying to sit him, Pitta is a virtual lock to get his first receiving touchdown of the season. But that seems like the only way he becomes a viable fantasy option. Pitta has only hit 40 yards once in the last five weeks, and just hasn’t been producing the way he was earlier in the season. The matchup is a solid one in Cincinnati, but I’m not confident in starting Pitta this week.
Other sits: Zach Ertz vs. GB