Start ’em Sit ’em is our weekly look at favorable and unfavorable match-ups and how they might affect lineup decisions for your fantasy football team. Other than a few elite players, no one should be classified as a must start every week, and analyzing match-ups can go a long way to giving your team a weekly edge. If you have any start’em sit’em questions feel free to post them in our Fantasy Football Forum.
Week 8 Byes
Falcons, Bears, Packers, Jets, Raiders, Buccaneers
When no one else believed, we did. Sure, people were saying to pick-up Murray but I did not see too many other people saying to immediately move him into your starting line-up. Well, if you asked in the forums we told you to start him and you were rewarded. As stated last week, I think the Cowboys will lean on Murray the rest of the way and this week will be no different. Jones is still out so you know the rookie is going to get another shot without having to worry about splitting too many carries. Philly is ranked 23rd vs. the run and they have to be more worried about that passing game than the running game so Murray has another chance to go off this week. Now, I am not expecting him to come close to what he did a week ago but 90 rushing yards, 3 catches for 25 yards, and a touchdown is not too much to ask out of my new 2011 man crush. (sorry Jahvid – get healthy and we will talk)
Point per reception league or not Sproles has to be a must start from here on out. Of course you are starting him vs. a soft Rams defense but his speed could lead to a more than one long run where he finds the endzone. Mix in the fact that Ingram might not play and I think Sproles has a chance to set career highs for receiving yards this week. (doesn’t watching him play make you think how bad Reggie Bush is? And how right the Texans were to grab Mario Williams with the number one overall pick instead?)
If you held onto Scott due to the Benson suspension, I am sorry, you will probably not be rewarded. First, it is only one game now and second, Seattle is pretty darn good against the run. They are ranked 10th and quick on the edges so the speed of Scott should be nullified here. One more fact is that Cincy has been getting Scott more and more involved these past weeks and he has not looked good at all – it seems as if anyone touches him he is going down. So he can have all the speed in the world but if he cannot break even an arm tackle, that is not going to help him much.
If you have been reading this article or watching our videos you know I am not a big fan of Boldin in Baltimore (I loved him with Arizona) but even I have to love him this week. Coming off that terrible Monday Night game the Ravens are going to be very angry and they already play so much better at home. Boldin found the endzone last week and I think he will do so again this week as the Cards are terrible at stopping number one wideouts. Start Boldin in all leagues and sit back to watch what should be his best game of the year.
The Pats are giving up over 300 yards in the air and the Steelers have gotten better each week. Remember a few weeks ago when everyone thought the Steelers were too old and Big Ben was not going to make it through the season without getting hurt due a bad o-line? Well things have changed and the o-line is giving Ben more and more time each week. The Pats do not have a great pass rush so Ben should have time and Brown has almost as many targets as Mike Wallace at this point. The Pats typically try to limit big plays (aka Wallace) but give up the short over the middle passes due to this (aka Brown). Expect Brown to get close to 10 targets and produce in a ppr league.
Since Ponder took over as the quarterback for the Vikings no other pass catcher has more targets than Michael Jenkins – last week he got over 100 yards and touchdown. Jenkins is not a must play by any means but with Harvin having rib issues (he is always banged up) Jenkins looks to be the odds on favorite to lead the team in targets again this week. If you are looking for high risk/high reward upside wideout Jenkins is a great guy to fit that bill.
Dustin is going to yell at me for this one but did you see the first 57 minutes of that game? Tebow is not a good quarterback – there was a reason John Fox had him as the third string QB coming into the season. His passes were all over the place, he turned his back to the defense what seemed like 25 times, and could have fumbled on a handful of occasions. Now, I know his legs is what sets him apart as a fantasy QB but the Lions are fast upfront and when he starts running they will close in much quicker and harder than the Dolphins did last week. I just think Tebow is the guy that played those first 57 minutes not the guy that played the last three.
If you got Rodgers, Ryan, Cutler, or even Freeman you might be in the need of quarterback this week and after watching Ponder play for two weeks – I kind of believe. He is not polished by any means but he has great pocket awareness and can make some plays with his legs. Last week John Beck had an alright fantasy day against the Panthers and I see him as a poor man’s Ponder so if you need a starter this week I think you could do a lot worse than this rookie.
As stated above when talking about Scott, Seattle is pretty good vs. the run so the way you beat them is in the air. Andy Dalton is an unsung hero in terms of a rookie QB due to all the Newton hype this year. He is playing great and really commands field when he is driving the ball. It does not hurt he gets to throw it up to AJ Green (who will be a top three wideout in terms of fantasy sooner than later) and coming off the bye I think this duo will have a nice game.
Cook was a sleeper Tight End that we really liked coming into the year and while he has not lived up to the hype he has shown some flashes this season. Indy is just plain terrible in all aspects of football right now and I expect them to focus on stopping Chris Johnson leaving some holes in the defense for Cook to find. An interesting side note was that Cook was lining up at the WR2 spot on some plays. I would not be totally surprised if they threw some new wrinkles with Cook on the outside in this game.
New York Giants
Since the G-Men were on a bye last week they were dropped in a ton of leagues. If you have been playing along at home with my pick-up and play defense calls you will know my DEF TD streak was broken last week. So now that I am not too concerned about that it is back to sacks and defenses that create turnovers (it has always been that I guess) and the G-Men should get to Moore by sacking him and creating turnovers quite a bit this week. The early line on this game is double digits with a lower over/under total. That mean Vegas (and I) think the G-Men will beat them soundly with the Fin not scoring too many points.
If you have any start’em sit’em questions feel free to post them in our Fantasy Football Forum.