You won’t see the obvious names on here, that would be pointless. Maybe occasionally to give you a reminder, but rather we are looking to identify some guys that you may be on the fence with and encourage you to either start or sit them. Matchups will be broken down, stats will be used, some projections will be provided and some “gut” feeling will be mixed in. But when it comes down to the come down, it’s your “gut” you need to roll with.
*Players listed in order of projected effectiveness in the start ‘em category and ineffectiveness in the sit ‘em category.
Phillip Rivers @ Tampa Bay
Rivers will get it done against Tampa Bay; this secondary has been horrendous all year and Rivers has the experience and tools to succeed against them. Rivers will step up for your fantasy squads.
Josh Freeman vs San Diego
I doubted Freeman this season, but he has proved me wrong with 11 TD’s in his last four games and overall has had a successful season. Freeman should stay hot against San Diego who are just average against Fantasy QB’s ranked 15th in points allowed to QB’s.
Joe Flacco vs Oakland
After early excitement with Flacco and the Ravens no huddle offense, Flacco is now playing like the QB most of us thought he was. With no multiple TD games in his last five games it’s hard to trust the guy. But Oakland presents a favorable matchup as they are ranked 23rd in points allowed to QB’s. Look for Flacco to finally get a two TD game and approach 300 yards passing.
Sam Bradford @ San Francisco
Don’t even think about starting Bradford this week, even in two QB leagues.
Michael Vick vs Dallas
After failing to really produce against New Orleans it is almost impossible to trust Michael Vick from here on in. Vick hasn’t played well, but his offensive line needs to take a lot of the blame, they have been atrocious. Every week he is getting crushed play after play. With Dallas and their top secondary coming to town, don’t even think about putting Vick in your lineups.
Matt Schaub @ Chicago
Chicago is 2nd best in points allowed to Fantasy QB’s and will no doubt frustrate the Texans passing game. Keep Schaub reserved.
Michael Turner @ New Orleans
You know the drill, start any and all fantasy players against the Saints Defense. Turner excels in good matchups so expect him to score at least once in this game.
Willis McGahee @ Carolina
McGahee and the Broncos arguably have the most favorable schedule of any team in the weeks ahead. He didn’t come through last week in a solid matchup but you have to keep putting him out there because more times than not he will prosper in these types of matchups. Carolina has been 6th worst in points allowed to Fantasy RB’s.
Vick Ballard @ Jacksonville
The Jags are allowing the 4th most points to Fantasy RB’s and got torched last week by Mikel LeShoure and Joique Bell. Donald Brown is most likely OUT for tonight’s game so Ballard will get a ton of burn. Great spot to start him.
Steven Jackson @ San Francisco
You trade this guy yet? You know my feelings on this dude.
Shonn Greene @ Seattle
The Seahawks Run D has been vulnerable the last three weeks, but as a Jets fan I don’t trust Shonn Greene in these types of matchups. I foresee a 16 carry 50-yard scoreless game from Greene.
Jamaal Charles @ Pittsburgh
This is so hard for me to put Charles in this spot, this is my favorite player in the NFL. I will be starting him, because I don’t have better options, but if you have the luxury, think about it. The Steelers are giving up 2nd fewest points to Fantasy Backs and the Chiefs passing game and Defense have been killing Charles’ value. They are constantly playing from behind and Charles just doesn’t get enough chances to contribute. The coaching staff has also completely misused him. It’s really frustrating. Hopefully he proves me wrong this week and runs all over Pittsburgh.
Torrey Smith vs Oakland
As Joe Flacco should get it going, look for Torrey Smith to get it flowing as well. Smith hasn’t played up to many owners expectations, but he should return provide a nice return of investment going against the Raiders and their average defense.
Brian Hartline vs Tennessee
After a few quiet weeks from his 243-yard explosion, Hartline had himself another solid game against the Colts catching eight balls for 107 yards. The Titans are ranked 23rd in points allowed to Fantasy WR’s so Hartline has a great chance to succeed in this matchup.
Malcom Floyd @ Tampa Bay
Floyd has just two TD’s all season, but this is a spot you have to think about plugging him in. The Bucs secondary has been brutal giving up the 3rd most points to Fantasy WR’s and Rivers will be chucking. Look for Floyd to have a productive game.
Jeremy Maclin vs Dallas
Maclin has been a disappointment all season, mostly due to Vick’s inability and the Eagles porous offensive line and he will continue the struggles this week against Dallas.
DeSean Jackson vs Dallas
Just like Maclin you can’t trust Jackson this week either. Dallas is giving up the 6th fewest points to Fantasy WR’s and Mo Clairborne and Brandon Carr are one of the better CB tandems in the league.
Sidney Rice vs New York Jets
Just a bad matchup for the Seattle Seahawks and Sidney Rice against the Jets who are allowing the fewest points to Fantasy WR’s despite the loss of Darelle Revis. Antonio Cromartie has played better than I have ever seen him and has been routinely giving #1 WR’s fits.
Vernon Davis vs St. Louis
Davis has been stagnant in his last two games with just five catches for 60 yards but should get it going against the Rams the week. St. Louis is giving up the 8th most points to Fantasy Tight Ends and the 49ers know they need to start finding more creative ways to get this stud the ball.
Brandon Myers @ Baltimore
Myers broke out with two TD’s last week prompting many owners to snatch him from the waiver wire this week. Myers had been fairly steady with 4 to 5 catches and around 40-50 yards every week until finally getting his first two TD’s of the year. Myers kind of looks like Carson Palmer’s fatter older brother maybe that is why Palmer has targeted him 23 times in his last three games. Keep Myers in lineups against Baltimore who can’t defend Tight Ends, ranked 22nd overall.
Dwayne Allen @ Jacksonville
The Jags have been pretty good against Tight Ends ranked 4th best, but I like Allen’s talent and the fact that Coby Fleener is out for another week. Look for Luck to target Allen a good amount in this game and for Allen to finish with around 50-70 yards receiving. I will take that from a Tight End not named Gronkowski, Gates or Graham.
Kyle Rudolph vs Detroit
Rudolph has been ice cold since a hot start, so keep him reserved until he proves he can produce again.
Scott Chandler @ New England
If Chandler doesn’t score he doesn’t produce. This is another guy that you really can’t trust. Stay away.
Brent Celek vs Dallas
As noted, the Eagles offense has been a huge disappointment. Celek is no exception. Dallas is 7th best at defending Tight Ends so you need to keep Celek reserved.
Aldon Smith vs St. Louis
Smith has been heating up in his last few games and now has 7.5 sacks on the year. The Rams are allowing the 7th most sacks and are giving up the 8th most points to Fantasy DE’s, so this is a juicy matchup for Smith.
Ed Reed vs Oakland
With Carson Palmer and his pass chucking, turnover prone ways coming to town, you need to get Reed in your lineups. I always envision a Reed pick six versus a QB like this.
Greg Hardy vs Denver
Peyton Manning has been the 2nd least sacked QB this year, mostly because of his doing. Therefore there will be limited sack opportunities for Hardy and this Carolina pass rush.
Jarius Byrd vs New England
Byrd is averaging just 3 tackles a game this season, but does have three interceptions. However, going against Brady and Gronkowski his interception opportunities will be limited. Keep him benched.