Thanksgiving is over and what better to ease your food coma than to make some fantasy football sit/start decisions!
We are only a few weeks away from fantasy football playoffs, so we probably have a few different categories of fantasy teams: those who are out, those who are in, and those who are on that bubble. For those of us on the playoff bubble, making the right start could be what gets you in or keeps you out.
Let’s take a look at who the big names are for this week’s Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em.
Trevor Lawrence, QB (Jacksonville Jaguars)
Not much to really say about this one except this game in Detroit should be a barn-burner.
Detroit and Jacksonville have pretty bad defenses, and Detroit at home has been able to score pretty handily. That means Trevor Lawrence and company should also be throwing a ton in order to keep up.
Current over/under is at 51.5 points, one of the highest of the week, and Lawrence has bounced back after an iffy midseason slump.
Lawrence is primed for a great streaming day.
Rachaad White, Running Back (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
We don’t know the health of Leonard Fournette quite yet, but Rachaad White has cemented a definite role in the Tampa Bay offense.
He rushed 14 times for 64 yards and caught nine of nine targets for 45 yards. Regardless of Fournette’s status, White should be a solid fantasy option as a dual-threat Running Back.
The Saints are a decent enough defense, but White’s receiving abilities make him pretty much a must-start in PPR leagues until Fournette returns.
Christian Watson, WR (Green Bay Packers)
Six touchdowns in the last three weeks are all I need to know when trying to pick a Wide Receiver I must start this week. And Christian Watson also faces Chicago, a team that is currently giving up more than 27 points a game over the last five weeks.
Aaron Rodgers is a bit banged up but has said he will play, and the whole “I own you” thing is probably on his mind as one of the only positives of this Green Bay Packer season….something Rodgers won’t want to lose.
Watson is a deep threat who can score on any catch, and if Justin Fields plays, I think this could be a higher-scoring game than it was in Week Two when the Packers won 27-10. The Bears’ improved offense has been putting up points with Justin Fields rushing, so hopefully, for Watson’s sake, he is healthy enough to play.
Either way, Watson is obviously one of Rodgers’ favorite endzone targets and has a good chance to score again in Week 13.
Juwan Johnson, TE (New Orleans Saints)
The Buccaneers are the fourth-worst team in defending Tight Ends and have given up five touchdowns to the position.
Juwan Johnson has quietly had a decent season, hauling in touchdowns and finishing with at least 40 yards in three of his last four games.
This is a Monday night matchup that should yield a decent amount of points, so Johnson is a solid streaming option in a plus-matchup.
Ryan Succop, K – (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
New Orleans is giving up the third-most points to Kickers, and Ryan Succop has been a solid fantasy player so far this season.
Tampa Bay should be able to move the ball against the Saints, but the Saint defense isn’t exactly bad either. That should create a few field goal opportunities in a potentially higher-scoring game.
Succop is rostered in under 50% of leagues and is a great streaming option this week.
Seattle Seahawks, DST
Sticking with teams playing against the lowly Rams’ offense, Seattle is the next team to get the chance to shut down Las Angeles, so I’ll be starting them with confidence.
The Chiefs held the Rams to 10 points last week, with one touchdown coming in the fourth quarter. They picked off Bryce Hopkins twice and sacked him three times.
I’d argue the Seahawk defense is playing better than the Chiefs, and now the Rams are also without Allen Robinson. The Seahawks are a smash start.
Deshaun Watson, QB (Cleveland Browns)
I know this game is getting super hyped. It’s almost as if the NFL planned for this to happen….
The Browns face the Houston Texans on Sunday in a “revenge” game for Quarterback Deshaun Watson. Now it isn’t exactly revenge since the Texans had every great reason to release him, but that aside, this is a juicy matchup that many may fall for.
But try not to fall into that trap this week. Watson hasn’t played a game in almost two years and is in a new offense and a new system. He probably hasn’t built chemistry and will be pretty rusty in his first game back.
I know many fantasy players might be on the fence about starting Watson this week in a plus matchup, but he could very well disappoint in his first game in two years.
Devin Singletary, RB (Buffalo Bills)
Devin Singletary has been heating up over the last few weeks, but you have to be wary that it will continue against the NFL’s best-run defense (points allowed to RB). The Patriots have been very good at stuffing the run, so this game might be more of a Josh Allen throwing-the-ball type of contest.
Singletary had two of his best games of the season in the last two weeks but it was against Detroit and Cleveland, arguably two of the worst run defenses in the NFL.
Add to that it is a Thursday night game in New England, so if you have other options with better matchups, Singletary should ride your bench this week.
Trey Burks, WR (Tennessee Titans)
The Eagles haven’t been as good on defense as they were at the start of the year, but they still have one of the best pass defenses in the NFL. It appears they are most beatable on the ground, which means a ton of work for Derrick Henry.
Trey Burks has finally been breaking out after a tumultuous start to his NFL career, but this week may be a bad one for the rookie. Burks faces a tough test and probably won’t see the big yardage he has gotten the last few weeks, so if you have better options it’s not a bad idea to pivot.
Burks hasn’t proven to be matchup-proof quite yet, and with Tennessee opting to probably run the ball down Philadelphia’s throat, he is a sit for me this week.
Cam Brate/Cade Otton, TE (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
Tight Ends are a fantasy wasteland right now, and the once-streamable Cade Otton is probably droppable at this point. He had 0 targets last week and has seen his usage drop with Cam Brate back in the lineup.
Brate himself had five targets in last week’s OT loss to the Browns, and at this point, you basically have to pray for a touchdown to be an ok fantasy week. That probably won’t happen this week as the Buccaneers take on the Saints, a defense that is currently allowing the least amount of points to opposing Tight Ends. In fact, the Saints have only allowed one touchdown to Tight Ends all season.
If you were hoping to stream a Tampa Bay Tight End, uhhh don’t this week.
Brandon McManus, K (Denver Broncos)
Not much to say here. Broncos will be in Baltimore playing against a decent defense. The Bronco offense is pretty much nonexistent, putting up only 36 points in their three most recent games combined.
At this point, I just don’t know how much the Broncos will even be in field goal range, and the Ravens will probably control the clock with their run game. McManus has been good, and against bad teams, he does have opportunities. I just don’t think they come this week.
Denver Broncos, DST
The Denver defense is really the only reason Denver has had any wins this season, but also just gave up 23 points to Carolina.
This week they face Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens in Baltimore, a tough test for any team.
With Denver slowly giving up on their season and Baltimore needing to win, I think this is a potential dud for the Bronco's defense. Jackson’s dual-threat abilities make him hard to fully stop, so the Broncos should give up a few scores and very few sacks in this one.
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