Rush Nation, once again I am getting this out to you on a Friday. However, I am here to deliver your Start/Sits for Week 12.
I did something extra this week to help you with Start/Sits. On Thursday, I recorded a Week 12 Look Ahead episode. I went through all the games on the slate and gave insight as to who to start and why. This is the last weeks of the bye, with the final 4 teams taking a seat this week. However, all 4 are strong offenses: The Chiefs, The Vikings, The Chargers and the Cardinals. Therefore this is a Start/Sits you need to pay attention to.
If you are struggling to get a team out on the field on Sunday, then refer back to our Waiver Wire article for Week Twelve or our look ahead podcast. Especially as all our Waiver Wire picks are under 30% owned in leagues.
So without further ado, it’s time to deep dive into the Start/Sits.
Baker Mayfield has arguably been the biggest disappointment at Quarterback. Last year, Bakermania was being whipped into fury and talk about Baker being in the running for Rookie of the Year.
Fast forward 12 months and Baker has been under whelming. Week’s 10 and 11 were the first time all season Baker had more than 1 Touchdown in a game (2 TDs in both). However, in the last 4 games, he faced New England, Denver, Buffalo and Pittsburgh. Against these four teams, Baker only threw 1 Interception. His next four games are Miami, Pittsburgh again, Arizona and Cincinnati.
However, it is now time for Baker to break out and close the season in a strong way. This week he is playing the Dolphins defense. Just last week, the Dolphins gave Josh Allen his best statistical day as a starter in the NFL and he finished up as the Fantasy Football QB1 last week. The Dolphins are 7th in terms of Fantasy Points per Game given up to QBs. They give up on average 21.8 Points per Game on average to Quarterbacks in Fantasy Football. I expect Baker Mayfield to exceed this total and finish as a top 7 or 8 Quarterback on the week.
Sam Darnold has been improving as the season goes on. He followed this trend last season. So much so, he was the NFL’s AFC Offensive Player of the Month for December in 2018.
If that wasn’t enough, he plays the Oakland this week. Oakland are currently ranked 29th in DVOA Football Outsiders rankings for points given up per drive in the NFL. The Raiders cannot keep many teams in check defensively. Only Ryan Finley and the Bengals and the Broncos have failed to score 20 points against the Raiders this season. If that wasn’t enough, the Raiders are allowing opposing Quarterbacks to score 2.5 Touchdowns a game on average and throw for almost 282 yards a game.
This should be a great opportunity for Sam Darnold to put up QB1 numbers three weeks on the spin.
Derrick Henry is currently a top 5 Running Back in 0.5 PPR format. He is quietly having the best season of his career. He is on pace to eclipse his Rushing Yards total, TD total, Receiving Yards total (in fact he has already exceeded this in 2019) and Fantasy Points total from 2018 and is in striking distance of these already inside 10 games.
In Week Fourteen last year, Derrick Henry on Thursday Night Football went 17-238-4 as he destroyed the Jaguars. That’s an average of 14 yards a carry. Now, whilst he is unlikely to put those numbers up again this time around, he is in play to have a big day against the struggling Jaguars.
Jacksonville are the 4th worst team against Running Backs in Fantasy Football. They give up 28.3 points per game to the position and have already allowed 12 Touchdowns to Running Backs in 2019. Derrick Henry should have another fine day and this Start/Sits column is confident on that. So line him up as a RB1 this week.
Calvin Ridley was always a Touchdown regression candidate in 2019. His very impressive 10 Touchdowns as a Rookie were eye catching, but was going to be hard to replicate. However, he is on pace to get very close to 1000 yards for the season and 8 Touchdowns. He is another player who is very quietly having a very good season. He is currently ranked the WR17 in 0.5 PPR Scoring.
What will help him to achieve his goals is a big game this weekend against the worst defense against Wide Receiver’s in terms of Fantasy Football in the NFL. Tampa have given up 18 Touchdowns and 208 yards a game to Wide Receivers in 2019 so far and a whopping 46.7 Points Per Game to Wide Receivers.
On Thursday’s podcast, I talked about Julio Jones always having a big game against Tampa Bay, especially at home. However Atlanta always put up a ton of yards on offense. According to DVOA Football Outsiders rankings Atlanta rank 3rd in yards per drive at 38.73 yards/drive. With a limited running game made more limited by the Tampa Bay defense and no Austin Hooper, it seems Ridley is due another big game this week. Therefore, whilst Ridley is making his first appearance in Start/Sits this week, you can see why I think he is a must start this week.
I am not a huge fan of playing anyone from the Redskins for Fantasy Football. However, when you play in a lot of 12 team, 14 team and 16 team leagues, you need to have just a Sprinkle (pun intended) of Redskins players. Occasionally, you have to even play some.
McLauren isn’t the same elite option he was when Keenum was throwing him the football. Since Haskins has been throwing him the football, his yardage totals are 11, 39, 39, and 69. He has no Touchdowns in his last four games since facing Miami.
However, the Lions do give up 185 yards per game to Wide Receivers and just over a Touchdown a game. As there are not a lot of options for Haskins to throw to, I feel like McLaurin is due a big run and catch to the house. But it will be the Yards after Catch that will be key in making this happen. Haskins has had enough time now and should feel less pressure this week as opposed to previous weeks, when he was playing teams with good defensive fronts.
Ok, so I have talked and written about Goff and his appalling stats over the last 18 games. However his ownership has not gone down. Not even by 1%. So people are not listening. Therefore, I am here to reiterate.
Goff’s on field poise and ability to go through his progressions seems to have just disappeared! He cannot seem to throw the ball well, or to open receivers, or make plays happen anymore. Against the Bears he went 11/18 for 173 and no Touchdowns.
Last week, I talked about Jared Goff’s time to throw stats according to Next Gen Stats. I mentioned his time to throw has dropped by 0.33 seconds since his bye and that he was making throws in blind panic in case he got hit. Well in Week Eleven he increased his time to throw up to a ridiculously slow 3.09 seconds. He was the fifth slowest to release the ball last week. However some of the Quarterbacks who were slower played with less pressure and against poor defensive fronts such as Lamar Jackson and Sam Darnold, who could control the game. He also wasn’t sacked. So no blaming the Offensive Line for this poor performance.
In his last 18 games, Goff has 18 Touchdowns, 18 Interceptions and 17 Fumbles. This week, he faces a Ravens defense hungry for more and have SuperBowl aspirations. Therefore, please, for all things Fantasy Football, unless you are in a 2 Quarterback League, drop Jared Goff today.
This is less about the matchup and more about the fact Royce Freeman is starting to fall into droppable territory.
I mentioned on Thursday’s podcast his snap rate has dropped to just 28%. What was once a 1A and 1B scenario is now an A and B scenario. Ian Rapoport broke the news last week the Broncos want to use Lindsay more. And this has come at the cost of Royce Freeman being relevant.
The other area that hurts Freeman is he is no long getting receiving work. In the Bronco’s last 3 games, since turning to Brandon Allen when Joe Flacco went on IR, Freeman is only getting 4% of the teams targets. And he didn’t even catch all of those targets. Therefore, you cannot rely on Freeman delivering more than 4 or 5 PPR points a game. Keep him as a handcuff, but as a starter, he is finished in Fantasy Football. He is a permanent sit in Start/Sits until further notice.
I said it on Tuesday, I think Gurley is a game script dependant Running Back. Against the Bears, the game was perfect for him. And he did not disappoint. However, he cannot play the Bears every week.
However, we can all see 2018 Todd Gurley is gone forever. This 2019 version isn’t as good, but he isn’t as bad as many people feared. He should finish the year as a Top 12 Running Back in Fantasy Football.
But this matchup does not suit Gurley in the slightest. The Ravens have the best offense in the NFL. They can beat you with the run. They can beat you in the air. And the Quarterback can almost beat you on his own. Add into the equation at the Ravens defense is on fire right now and not giving up a lot of big plays to opponents, especially Running Backs, and you can see Gurley is really in trouble in this game. The only thing that can save him is if he gets a Touchdown from the goal-line. Hopefully he does, but don’t be taking that to the bank. Harsh for Gurley to be in the sits of the Start/Sits column, but it is also not the first time this has happened. And I was right last time I did it.
John Brown is coming off his best week of the season. However, do not expect a repeat performance this weekend against Denver. Brown will get the Chris Harris Jr. treatment on Sunday. The Broncos are also a top 7 defense against Wide Receivers. They have only given 6 Touchdowns all season to Wide Receivers and Chris Harris Jr has only given up one of those. That was to Stefon Diggs last week in an outrageous second half comeback.
I do expect the Bills to win this week. However I think it will be mostly Josh Allen making a few runs, Singletary controlling the tempo, and just the few plays by Wide Receiver. I wouldn’t expect Allen to get more than 225 yards passing and for Beasley, Knox to be involved more than usual. Brown should still get his 50-70 yards off 4-6 targets. However I don’t think he will get in the end zone. He has 4 Touchdowns this season. Three are against the Dolphins in two games and the other is against the Jets in Week One. So whereas he was a start in the Start/Sits last week, he is a sit this week.
Michael Gallup, since returning from injury, is having a great season. He is coming off the back of one of his most targeted games as a Cowboy in the NFL. His 13 targets is just 1 behind the 14 targets he got in Week Five against the Green Bay Packers. He has another big fantasy game as well, putting up 19.3 half PPR fantasy points.
However, this week he faces the best defense in the NFL, the New England Patriots. Since they have only given up 1 Touchdown in the air to Wide Receivers, I don’t like the chances of Gallup scoring this week. Especially as I expect him to go against Stephon Gilmore this week. Even though Cooper is the WR1 on the team, he is hobbled slightly. I think Bill Belichick will line up Gilmore to stop the speed threat of Gallup and keep him in check for this important game. This is a rare sit for Gallup in the Start/Sits column.
That’s everything for this week. Please do leave comments for more Start/Sits. Also, please do check out all our other content here on 5yardrush.co.uk and make sure you are subscribed and are downloading our podcast, which you can get in your ears 4 times a week.
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However, until next weeks Start/Sits Rush Nation, Keep Rushing!