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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.
Cam Newton vs Tampa Bay
Newton will begin his strong finish to the season starting this game against the Bucs who have been brutal all season against the pass. Newton will payback his owners this week with a very nice performance.
Carson Palmer vs New Orleans
Palmer is getting it done this year with 15 TD’s so far and has six of em in his last two. Palmer is also tossing the rock around like a icelandian harpoon thrower averaging 41 attempts per game! This will be a passing fest come Sunday between Brees and Palmer and Carson is a excellent play.
Ryan Fitzpatrick vs Miami
Was going to put Andrew Luck here, but since I went Palmer and Fig Newtonalready I’ll go with something a little less obvious in Fitzy. If your a Big Ben,Vick, or Cutler owner and are looking for a good spot play, go with Fitzpatrick against the Phins who are allowing 11th most points to Fantasy QB’s.
Alex Smith vs Chicago
Smith is coming off a concussion and although he will likely play he can’t be started, even in two QB leagues.
Phillip Rivers @ Denver
The Denver defense has been surging of late and I don’t trust Rivers on the road against the Broncos in this game. The Broncos have held opposing QB’s under 20 points in their last four games.
Joe Flacco @ Pittsburgh
Flacco was a recommended start last week as he went off against the Raiders throwing for 341 yards and three TD’s; but this week he needs to be benched. The Pittsburgh defense has been 2nd best against Fantasy QB’s and will be fired up on Sunday Night in this divsional rival matchup.
C.J. Spiller vs Miami
C.J. Spiller, Buffalo Bills
With Fred Jackson OUT Thursday night, C.J. Spiller will get full reign. The matchup isn’t great against Miami, but C.J. Spiller needs to be started against any defense when he’s all alone in the backfield.
Reggie Bush @ Buffalo
Bush has not looked good for several weeks now. Fumbles have been a problem which led to him getting benched last Sunday, his YPC has been down and now Daniel Thomas is getting nearly the same amount of carries each game. Bush has only one 100-yard game all season which was in Week 2. However things should get better for Reggie and it should come this week against the Bills who are giving up the most points to Fantasy RB’s. Last year Bush ran for over 200 yards against the Bills, so get him in your lineups.
Darren Sproles, Chris Ivory @ Oakland
Sproles has been practicing this week and it appears he will be ready to go on Sunday. If he’s a go start him against Oakland who are allowing the 3rd most points to Fantasy Backs. As far as Ivory if Sproles is OUT he is a must start, but even if Sproles plays Ivory could should still get a fair amount of carries and has been impressive with his increased role the past few weeks, finding paydirt twice.
Michael Turner vs Arizona
Turner usually takes advantage of great matchups, but he was absolute dud against the Saints and their terrible Run D. It’s hard to trust Turner after that game and going against Arizona who can actually defend the run ranked 6th best against RB’s, you need to consider benching him. In Fantasy Football, their are few things worse than a 15 carry, 38-yard type of game from your starting RB.
Ryan Mathews @ Denver
Mathews has failed to live up the hype once again and has done nothing of note in 2012. He has yet to have a 100-yard game and Ronnie Brown is looking like the better option on third downs. Don’t continue to die with Mathews if you don’t have to, if you have something else that’s reasonable take a shot.
Willis McGahee vs San Diego
McGahee is another RB who has frustrated his owners this season. He has failed continously in good matchups and is constantly putting the putting the ball on the ground. Last week Ronnie Hillman stole a TD from him and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Hillman start getting the rock more going forward. Willis needs to show us owners that he is ready to perform at a high level again before we put him back in our lineups.
Stevie Johnson vs Miami
Johnson is what he is, inconsistent. Not really to his doing, but moreso to Ryan Fitzpatrick‘s. Last week in a great matchup vs New England, Johnson had six catches for 86 yards and I expect similar numbers against Miami who are allowing the 5th most points to Fantasy WR’s. Johnson has yet to have a 100-yard game this season but has found the endzone four times and I expect him to score tonight.
Darrius Heyward-Bey vs New Orleans
Darrius Heyward-Bey, Oakland Raiders
Heyward-Bey is starting to come alive in his last two games with 10 catches for 150 yards and a TD. With the Saints coming to town, Bey should keep it rolling. Go snatch him up if he’s out there on your waiver wire and start him this week if you need a WR.
Donnie Avery and T.Y. Hilton @ New England
This is going to be a showdown between Luck and Bradyand pretty much everyone in this game is a quality start. Avery is 18th in the league with 75 targets so he’s the better option over Hilton, but T.Y. should get it done as well. Expect Luck to easily chuck it over 40 times.
Josh Gordon @ Dallas
After scoring four TD’s in three games, Gordon has come back to earth in his last two games being held under 50 yards in both games. Things most likely will not improve against Dallas and their tough secondary ranked 10th best against Fantasy WR’s.
Torrey Smith @ Pittsburgh
I don’t trust Flacco against the Steelers, so therefore I don’t trust Smith against Pittsburgh who are allowing the fewest points to Fantasy WR’s.
Dez Bryant vs Cleveland
The Browns secondary was one of the best last season and after struggling early this season they have since rebounded since the return of CB Joe Haden from his four-game suspension. I’m a little weary of throwing Bryant out there this week matching up against Haden who is one of the best corners in the league.
Greg Olsen vs Tampa Bay
Greg Olsen, Carolina Panthers
The Panthers and Cam Newton realized last week that they need to start getting the ball to Olsen more with Brandon LaFell failing to step up as that 2nd option behind Steve Smith. Olsen has been targeted 19 times in his last two games and has 14 catches for over 150 yards with two TD’s. Get him going against Tampa Bay who Cam will have a very joyous game against.
Dwayne Allen @ New England
Coby Fleener will be OUT once again so Allen will get the full array of snaps against the Pats who are allowing the 3rd most points to Fantasy Tight Ends. Look for Allen to finish with 5-6 catches and close to 80 yards.
Brandon Myers vs New Orleans
Myers left last weeks game early due to a concussion, but is practicing this week and expected to play. Myers has been targeted 20 times in his last two games and is pretty much a sure bet for at least 50 yards, making him a reasonable play almost every week.
Dennis Pitta @ Pittsburgh
After being dormant for five straight weeks, Pitta returned to fantasy relevance with 67 yards and a TD last week. Unfortunately it’s back to the closet with Mush and Frankie Coffee Cakes for Pitta this week against the Steelers.
Heath Miller vs Baltimore
With Big Ben, Miller was one of the best Fantasy Tight Ends this year, but now with Byron Leftwich starting this week it remains to be seen how much Miller will be able to contribute. I would keep him reserved until Leftwich proves he can get Miller the rock.
Scott Chandler vs Miami
Chandler also returned to fantasy prominence last week after weeks of doing nothing. However, his 65 yards and a touch came against New England, it won’t be the same against Miami who are 13th best against Fantasy Tight Ends. Chandler is really only worth starting in PLUS matchups.
Aldon Smith vs Chicago
Aldon Smith, San Francisco 49ers
Smith has been red hot the past few weeks and has another nice matchup against the Bears who have allowed the 5th most sacks in the NFL.
Jo-Lonn Dunbar vs New York Jets
Dunbar has been a tackle machine for the Rams with 47 of them and he should continue to rack them up against the Jets who will pound the run and maintain a short passing game.
Quentin Jammer @ Denver
Don’t trust Jammer against Peyton Manning, Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker, keep him reserved in this brutal matchup.
Patrick Peterson @ Atlanta
Peterson has a rough matchup as well against Julio Jones, Roddy and Ryan. Unless your league rewards return yards, keep Peterson benched.