Week 13 Where to Put em

Wednesday, Nov 30, 2011 at 12:00 pm ET

fantasy football rankings
Where to Put 'em is the Fantasy Football Nerd's look at the best and worst matchups for week 13 of the 2011 season. Decisions are based upon the FFN rankings and matchup analysis. Given the known conditions, these matchups are the ones to watch and/or avoid.

This list does not generally include the elite players that you are going to start regardless of matchup. You don't need us to tell you to start Aaron Rodgers, Andre Johnson, or Adrian Peterson. Where to Put 'em takes a look at other players on your team that we believe either have great matchups or should be avoided for multiple reasons. Factors like opposing defense, performance trending, and peer comparisons may influence our decisions.

Put 'em In The Game: Matt Moore
Matt Moore has quietly slipped into being a solid fantasy QB. He has a fantastic match-up this week against the Raiders who are giving up 256 yards per game and 21 fantasy points each week to opposing QB's. If your starting QB has a difficult match-up, try plugging in Moore. He's available in 83% of all Fleaflicker.com leagues.
Put 'em In The Game: Eli Manning
While the Packers secondary has stepped it up recently, they are still giving up a ton of yards through the air. When they come visiting Eli Manning and the Giants at the Meadowlands, we're anticipating a shoot out. It's the same story every week. The Packers get out ahead and their opponent is forced to throw a lot to try and catch up. With an incredible receiving corp, Eli should have plenty of options to rack up some yards.
Put 'em In The Game: Matthew Stafford
Normally we'd consider Matthew Stafford a stud, but when he throws 9 interceptions in the past 3 games, it's hard to fit that label on him. You can say that his play has been erratic as of late. That should change this week when he and the Suh-less Lions roll into New Orleans to face Drew Brees and company. The Saints give up 269 yards per game through the air and 21 fantasy points to opposing signal-callers. Expect a lot of Stafford in this shoot-out.
Put 'em In The Game: DeAngelo Williams
Like LL Cool J said "Don't call it a comeback. I been here for years." DeAngelo Williams has finally started to turn it up a notch, and while we're not ready to call it a comeback, he and Jonathan Stewart do have a pretty sweet match-up. The Buccaneers give up more yards on the ground than anyone else per game and the third most fantasy points.
Put 'em In The Game: LeGarrette Blount
Another team giving up a ton of yards on the ground per game are the Carolina Panthers, and with LeGarrette Blount on a roll, there's no sense in sitting him now. He's hit the century mark in each of his last two games and he should see that mark again this week. This is a great time to own LeGarrette Blount.
Put 'em In The Game: Chris Johnson
It's amazing what a decent match-up can do for a guy. In a cake match-up against Tampa Bay last week, CJ2K took them for 190 yards on the ground. The Buffalo Bills give up the 6th-most fantasy points to opposing RB's which should keep Johnson fantasy-relevant and help get his numbers back to where we had anticipated them.
Put 'em In The Game: Eric Decker
When Tim Tebow does throw (hey, it happens occasionally), you can expect Eric Decker to be his primary target. He has done well over the past 5 weeks (minus the game against Revis and the Jets) and has seen the end zone in four of those games. Minnesota gives up the second most fantasy points to wide receivers which makes Decker a great WR3 or flex play this week.
Put 'em In The Game: Victor Cruz
Hopefully you took our advice on Cruz last week, because WOW - 9 receptions for 157 yards and 2 scores certainly helps when it comes to winning your fantasy match-up. Don't sit him now. He's come from nowhere to become a Top 5 Fantasy WR. His match-up at home this week against the Packers is definitely what Cruz-owners want. Their secondary can be thrown on and thrown on a lot. Reports show his hip to be a non-factor in his Week 13 readiness.
Put 'em In The Game: Brandon Lloyd
While it's terribly difficult to run on San Francisco, you can get yards through the air on them. Brandon Lloyd will attempt to do just that this week. Over the past 6 games as a Ram, Lloyd is averaging 5 receptions for 66 yards and almost 1 score each week. Mr. Consistency should produce a stat line similar to that this week.
Put 'em In The Game: Fred Davis
After a three week drought, it was nice to see Fred Davis back in the double digit fantasy production. This week he'll face a Jets defense that is far more gentle on TE's than WR's. Davis has solidified himself as a Top 5 Fantasy TE. As long as they keep targeting him, he should do just fine.
Put 'em In The Game: Brandon Pettigrew
Perhaps our expectations for Brandon Pettigrew were higher than what he has achieved or perhaps we should look closer at the numbers. Pettigrew is currently 9th among all TE's in fantasy production for the year. With Megatron getting the bulk of the defensive attention, Pettigrew becomes a nice option in that passing attack. New Orleans is middle-of-the-road against TE's.
Put 'em In The Game: Stephen Gostkowski
If the Indianapolis Colts could put up a decent fight, they might be able to prevent their opponents from getting into either the end zone or FG range. Sadly, that's not the case and they have to face one of the most prolific offenses in the NFL this week. Expect Gostkowski to see plenty of time on the field this week.
Put 'em On The Bench: Joe Flacco
We expected better out of Joe Flacco this season. Call it a down year or perhaps just a tough schedule but he hasn't lived up to draft expectations. If his schedule is the main culprit, don't expect a reprieve this week when he visits the Browns. Cleveland gives up the fewest yards and 2nd-fewest fantasy points to opposing QB's.
Put 'em On The Bench: Ben Roethlisberger
While we don't think Roethlisberger is in a must-bench situation, he's not in a good one either. Combine the painful finger with the fact that he just faced the Bengals three weeks ago to mediocre results and it's tough to find some optimism for him this week. Cincy is a Top 10 fantasy defense against the pass and gives up the 7th-fewest fantasy points to QB's.
Put 'em On The Bench: Steven Jackson
Sit Steven Jackson? Seriously? Ummm. Yes. One of fantasy football's perennial favorites has a ridiculously tough match-up this week. The 49ers defense is to RB's like Darrelle Revis is to WR's. San Francisco has still not allowed a rushing TD all season and they're giving up the fewest fantasy points to opposing rushers. It's a bad situation (unless you have the SF defense).
Put 'em On The Bench: Peyton Hillis
Well, what do you know? The Madden cover boy made it onto the field last week and played the whole game without re-injuring himself. The same can't be said for his backup Montario Hardesty who apparently can't warm up without getting injured. Unfortunately, Hillis' performance isn't bound to improve much more than last Sunday's performance. His schedule for the rest of the season is tough and it starts with the Ravens this week. Maybe next year tough guy.
Put 'em On The Bench: Santana Moss
Stevie Johnson proved to be the exception to the rule when he dominated Darrelle Revis last week. We're not anticipating Santana Moss to be able to do what Johnson did. He should struggle on Revis Island. Shanahan is going to want to run the ball as much as possible this week, and when he does decide to go to the air, there won't be many targets to Moss this week.
Put 'em On The Bench: Anquan Boldin
It's tough to like Anquan Boldin this week for the same reasons that we put Joe Flacco on the Sit 'em List. The Browns have a fantastic pass defense that has allowed the fewest yards, the fewest TD's, and the fewest fantasy points to opposing WR's this season. Statistically speaking, Dr. Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory has better odds of scoring this week than Boldin does.
Put 'em On The Bench: Jermaine Gresham
Captain Obvious is reporting that the Steelers have a great pass defense. When Jermaine Gresham and company come rolling into Pittsburgh, he's going to find himself in a brutal environment where other tight ends have found little/no luck. The Steelers are giving up the 8th-fewest fantasy points to TE's this year. If you have another option, play it.
Put 'em On The Bench: Adam Vinatieri
We're not a big fan of Adam Vinatieri this week and it's pretty simple to explain why. If your team can't get into field goal position, your team can't kick field goals. If your team can't get into the end zone, your team can't kick extra points. Unless there's another way for a kicker to score some fantasy points, we're not expecting much out of Vinatieri.

Join the Discussion

exualmet CommentedNov 30, 2011 11:00 am

Texans DST or Packers DST? I'm thinking better INT possibilities of Eli Manning versus Matt Ryan...

WazNFL CommentedNov 30, 2011 11:00 am


Is Andre Johnson a better start than Boldin?

What about Vince Young over Carson?

Thanks again.

Alfenstone CommentedNov 30, 2011 11:00 am

Need help with running back selection. Can play three, A. Foster, D. Murrray, M. Lynch, M. Bush, R. Mendenhal. Very tough opponent to play this week, with final playoff spot on the line if I when this week. Any advice you could give me is greatly appreciated. Thanks Jim

JACKASS PENGUIN CommentedDec 1, 2011 11:00 am


have an issue, your analyzer says start steven jackson (according to points) over cj spiller but above your telling me to sit steven jackson. Can you give me a clue as to who I should start?

Thanks, JP

Nerd CommentedDec 1, 2011 11:00 am

@exualmet - I agree with you on the Packers this week.

@RamRob - I actually have that situation (Johnson vs Boldin) and I'm personally putting Johnson in. With the way he's been playing, I'm going with Vince Young over Palmer this week.

@Alfenstone - Hey Jim - I'd roll with Foster, Murray, and Lynch. I'd like to say Bush but 1) even though he didn't practice today, McFadden hasn't been officially ruled out yet, & 2) Miami has a brutal rush defense allowing just 97 yards per game and the 2nd-fewest fantasy points.

@JP - I'd still go with the Analyzer on this and start Jackson over Spiller this week, but control your expectations. He's very likely going to struggle against San Fran for the reasons I listed above.

JuJu's Tigers CommentedDec 2, 2011 11:00 am


Would you ever consider sitting Andre Johnson?


Nerd CommentedDec 2, 2011 11:00 am

Absolutely. If I had safer, more reliable options at WR, I'd sit Johnson. He's back and he's looking good, but the QB situation...frankly....sucks. I'm really hoping that he doesn't become a 2010 Carolina Steve Smith situation where Smith was very talented but sucked when his QB couldn't get him the ball.

Until defenses truly stack the box against Foster & Tate, the running game is their saving grace now.

I think Johnson's talent is tremendous and I have little/no concern about the injury. Let's see what this week looks like.

Ben7132 CommentedDec 2, 2011 11:00 am


What two would you pick out of Mike Wallace, L. Robinson, R. White, and M. Colston?

Nerd CommentedDec 2, 2011 11:00 am

I think Wallace and White are the consensus picks by quite a few spots. With Austin out again this week, I think Robinson has a fantastic shot at outperforming all of them again though. Personally, I like Wallace and Robinson this week.

Anthony CommentedDec 3, 2011 11:00 am


I agree with sitting Boldin and Jackson this week, but what do you guys think about Reggie Wayne after his big game last week, and what about Andre Johnson with T.J. Yates throwing him the ball?




Anthony CommentedDec 3, 2011 11:00 am

sorry didn't read about andre above? but what about Wayne?

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