andrew luck

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

 

When giving advice on who to play I prefer not to say ‘Start player x’ or ‘Sit player y’ because I don’t know who everyone has on their bench.  Telling you to sit a borderline QB when all the options available to you in your league are worse doesn’t do you much good.  So instead I’ll make references to the classic spaghetti western.  Assume the players who aren’t mentioned here should produce within their usual point range.

 

 

Feel free to ask questions about your specific scenario in the comments section below and I’ll try and answer before game time.  Make sure you include league type, number of players, etc.

 

 

Legend:

 

 

Good – These players have promising match ups and should provide owners with 10-25% above their usual fantasy production.

 

 

Bad – These players have challenging match ups and will likely produce 10-25% less than their usual fantasy points.

 

 

Ugly – These players should not be started this week if at all possible.

 

 

 

Week Eleven

 

 

Tennessee, Minnesota, NY Giants and Seattle on their bye week.  A few premier players to worry about replacing from your starting lineup this week but overall the impact shouldn’t be too bad.

 

 

 

Arizona Cardinals @ Atlanta Falcons

 

Weather: Dome

 

Playing Surface: Artificial Turf

 

 

Bad:

 

John Skelton

 

Larry Fitzgerald

 

Andre Roberts

 

 

The bad match up is more due to the ineptitude of the Cards than the strength of the Falcons but still, don’t expect much from these three.

 

 

 

Cleveland Browns @ Dallas Cowboys

 

Weather: 43/66f Increasing Clouds

 

Playing Surface: Artificial Turf

 

 

Good:

 

Tony Romo

 

Dez Bryant

 

Miles Austin

 

Jason Witten

 

 

Expect Romo and his pass catchers to have a good day through the air as long as his line can handle the improving Brown’s interior D line.

 

 

Bad:

 

Brandon Weeden

 

Josh Gordon

 

 

The mostly ineffective Brown’s offense goes up against a Dallas defense  that is top five for fantasy points through the air.  These are borderline Ugly but I’m feeling generous.  Still a great idea to sit both these guys if you have any other valid options.

 

 

 

Green Bay Packers @ Detroit Lions

 

Weather: Dome

 

Playing Surface: Artificial Turf

 

 

Good:

 

Calvin Johnson

 

Titus Young

 

Brandon Pettigrew

 

Aaron Rodgers

 

Matthew Stafford

 

 

Yep, expect a bit of an offensive display, but both defenses actually playing half-decent so temper expectations a little.  Nelson, Cobb or Jones aren’t on this list.  I wouldn’t hesitate to start them too, just that the numbers don’t point to as much of a favorable match up.  Check the injury report on Johnson, he’s listed as questionable but is expected to play.

 

 

Bad:

 

James Starks

 

 

Whoever gets the lead role for the Packers is likely in for a long and unproductive day.  Detroit’s run defense is good though inconsistent but the Pack haven’t been able to – or interested in – running against anyone.

 

 

Ugly:

 

Alex Green

 

 

In case you haven’t heard, the Packers’ coaching staff confirmed this week that Starks is the starter in week 11.  Don’t start Green, and I wouldn’t be afraid to drop him entirely if you need the roster spot.

 

 

 

Cincinnati Bengals @ Kansas City Chiefs

 

Weather: 40/59f Mostly Sunny

 

Playing Surface: Grass

 

 

Good:

 

Jamaal Charles

 

Andy Dalton

 

A.J. Green

 

Jermaine Gresham

 

 

Charles should have real good day, if you’re desperate Peyton Hillis may be an option as well.  Dalton and Green will be their usual selves while Hawkins and Gresham should see an improvement over their usual production.

 

 

Bad:

 

Matt Cassel

 

Dwayne Bowe

 

 

I would sit Cassel but not Bowe unless you have enough strong options.  He’ll still get his targets and probably put up enough fantasy points to warrant being in your lineup.

 

 

Take a chance on:

 

Andrew Hawkins

 

 

Hawkins hasn’t done much fantasy-wise lately is listed as questionable.  If he plays I have a hunch he will put up some points this week.

 

 

 

Philadelphia Eagles @ Washington Redskins

 

Weather: 35/51f Partly Sunny

 

Playing Surface: Grass

 

 

Good:

 

Nick Foles

 

DeSean Jackson

 

Brent Celek

 

Alfred Morris

 

 

Great spot for the rookie to get his first career start versus the 31st ranked defense for fantasy QB points against.  Word of warning though, the Eagle’s offensive line is bad and getting worse by the minute it seems.  So temper expectations despite the good match up ‘on paper’.  Morris should be good to go and do well.

 

 

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Carolina Panthers

 

Weather: 38/59f Slight Chance Rain

 

Playing Surface: Grass

 

 

 

Good:

 

Doug Martin

 

 

‘He who has the dumbest nickname in NFL history’ should continue to put up good numbers this week.

 

 

Bad:

 

Jonathan Stewart/DeAngelo Williams

 

 

Stellar Bucs run D shouldn’t have too much trouble with this pair.  Neither one has been performing anywhere near starting RB territory anyway so hopefully you’ve already found other options.

 

 

 

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Houston Texans

 

Weather: Dome

 

Playing Surface: Grass

 

 

GOLD:

 

Arian Foster

 

 

The Jags are giving up the second most fantasy points to running backs on average, the Texans are putting up the fourth most.  ‘Nuff said.

 

 

Bad:

 

Jacksonville

 

 

Still no MJD, still no fantasy relevant players on the Jags.  Sit them all versus Houston.

 

 

 

New York Jets @ St. Louis Rams

 

Weather: Dome

 

Playing surface: Artificial Turf

 

 

Good:

 

Steven Jackson

 

 

Jackson had a pretty good day against a strong Niners defense last week.  It appears the time share with Richardson may be ending and Jackson still has enough in the tank to be fantasy relevant.

 

 

Bad:

 

Jeremy Kerley

 

Mark Sanchez

 

Sam Bradford

 

Danny Amendola

 

 

Not a lot to like here, best bet is sit all of these guys if it’s an option for you.  If you are starting any of them don’t expect much.

 

 

 

New Orleans Saints @ Oakland Raiders

 

Weather: 49/61f Chance Showers

 

Playing Surface: Grass

 

 

GOLD:

 

Carson Palmer

 

Denarius Moore

 

Darius Heyward-Bey

 

Brandon Myers

 

Marques Colston

 

Lance Moore

 

Jimmy Graham

 

 

The Saints D looked better last week but I chalk that up to their rivalry with the Falcons more than any tangible improvement.  The Raiders passing game is in the top ten for fantasy points so I expect all of the above to have good games.  The Oakland secondary on the other hand has been gifting opposition passing games all season long and there’s no reason to think it will end against New Orleans.  Heyward-Bey is questionable and the word is he probably will not play so check the injury reports.

 

 

Take a chance on:

 

Rod Streater

 

 

If Heyward-Bey does sit out, Streater would likely be the biggest beneficiary.  Even if DHB plays Streater could provide some desperation fantasy value

 

 

 

San Diego Chargers @ Denver Broncos

 

Weather: 31/62f Mostly Sunny

 

Playing Surface: Hybrid Grass

 

 

Good:

 

Eric Decker

 

Demaryius Thomas

 

Peyton Manning

 

 

Manning and co. at home should be able to do some damage.  Start all three with confidence.

 

 

Bad:

 

Ryan Mathews

 

Willis McGahee

 

 

Neither running back should fare very well in this matchup.  You may not have a better option though, expect 7-10 pts from each of them and start/sit accordingly.  For Mathews his first practice of the week was Friday and it was limited.  He’s listed as questionable but likely won’t play so make sure you check the injury reports.  It’s a 4:25 p.m. start so there’s even more reason to start someone else unless you have a viable alternative who isn’t playing in the early games.

 

 

Ugly:

 

Jackie Battle/Ronnie Brown

 

 

Some would suggest using Battle or Brown as Mathews’ handcuff.  If Mathews sits out I wouldn’t put either of these guys in unless you’re happy with max 5 pts.

 

 

 

Indianapolis Colts @ New England Patriots

 

Weather: 26/49f Sunny

 

Playing Surface: Artificial Turf

 

 

GOLD:

 

Stevan Ridley

 

 

The Pats are putting up the second most fantasy points on the ground and the majority of that comes from Ridley.  Expect a stellar output this week.

 

 

Good:

 

Tom Brady

 

Wes Welker

 

Brandon Lloyd

 

Rob Gronkowski

 

Reggie Wayne

 

Donnie Avery

 

Andrew Luck

 

 

Assuming Aaron Hernandez sits as expected, the remaining Pats air attack should do well against the Colts suspect secondary.  The Colts passing game should do well also, but a bit of a caveat that Belichick historically has done very well against rookie QB’s.  Luck is not your average rookie QB though, so he should do better than most.  The Pats are becoming legendary for listing everyone with worse than a hang nail as questionable.  But Welker’s first practice of the week was on Friday and it was limited.  He’s still expected to play but it’s a late game so my advice is make sure you have any remotely serviceable WR who’s not playing at one o’clock to put in just in case.  Lloyd and Gronkowski were also limited in practice and listed as questionable but all signs point to both playing.

 

 

Bad:

 

Donald Brown/Vick Ballard

 

 

It’s not a great match up if either one was going on as the lead back.  The expected time share means don’t expect either one to produce much.

 

 

Take a chance on:

 

TY Hilton

 

 

A great option to pick up off the wire if he’s available in your league, especially if you have a WR who’s questionable in a late game.  He and Luck are developing chemistry and I think there’s a good chance he can continue the worrisome trend of wideouts getting behind the Pats secondary for a long score.

 

 

 

Baltimore Ravens @ Pittsburgh Steelers

 

Weather: 33/56f Mostly Clear

 

Playing Surface: Grass

 

 

Bad:

 

Torrey Smith

 

Anquan Boldin

 

Joe Flacco

 

Byron Leftwich

 

 

The Steelers D has picked it up lately, and lucky for them Ryan Clark looks to be healthy enough to suit up.  I don’t think Flacco and the gang will be very successful.  However, with Lord Byron at the helm for Pittsburgh he may gift the Raven’s offense with good field position at various points throughout the game in which case the prospects for these players would improve.

 

 

 

Chicago Bears @ San Francisco 49ers

 

Weather: 48/61f Slight Chance Rain

 

Playing Surface: Grass

 

 

Ugly:

 

Brandon Marshall

 

Jason Campbell

 

 

This match up would have been listed as Ugly before Cutler got concussed last week.  Now, it’s only here because I couldn’t think of a term worse than Ugly.  Don’t bother picking up Campbell and as hard as it is you may want to sit one of the top WR’s in fantasy.  He and Cutler had great chemistry which obviously won’t be there with Campbell.  I am predicting somewhere in the neighborhood of 8 points for Marshall so use that as a comparison with your other WR options and set your lineup accordingly.

 

 

Bad:

 

Michael Crabtree

 

Vernon Davis

 

Alex Smith

 

Matt Forte

 

 

A little better match up than for the Bears passing game, it’s still not looking good for the Niners.  You may not have an alternative for Davis at TE, but if you do I’d seriously think about sitting Davis along with the other Niners.  Smith is supposed to play but I wouldn’t start him or Kaepernick if he gets the call.  I wouldn’t sit Forte but don’t expect a banner day against San Fran.

 

 


Write comment
Comments (2)add comment

Steve Braun said:

steve_oshp
Update Thanks for the heads-up letnry
With Hawkins out hard to say whether any of the other WR are viable. If desperate I'd go with Brandon Tate
November 18, 2012
Votes: +0

letnry said:

letnry
... Just a heads up, Hawkins is inactive today.
November 18, 2012
Votes: +0
You must be logged in to post a comment. Please register if you do not have an account yet.

busy