Week 5 Sit-Start Where to Put em

Thursday, Oct 4, 2012 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 5 of the 2012 NFL 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 Ray Rice. 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: Philip Rivers
If you drafted Philip Rivers as your QB1, you've likely been disappointed in his overall performance after a month. Things should pick up with a meeting at New Orleans. RG3, Cam Newton, and Aaron Rodgers each took the Saints to task. Rivers should easily see double digit fantasy points and will likely end the day in the Top 10.
Put 'em In The Game: Andy Dalton
Who's the number 1 fantasy wide receiver? Calvin Johnson? Roddy White? Nope. It's AJ Green and the man throwing to him has been putting up solid numbers every week. Andy Dalton has quietly cemented himself into the Top 10 of fantasy QB's. The odds of Dalton going over 300 yards this game are very good. With AJ Green, Jermaine Gresham, and Andrew Hawkins at his disposal, what's not to like against an average Miami secondary?
Put 'em In The Game: Peyton Manning
You can't go wrong with either Manning this week, but we're going to highlight Peyton who's coming off a big game against Oakland and is gearing up for a shootout against fellow future HOFer Tom Brady. We've watched Joe Flacco and Ryan Fitzpatrick light it up against the Pats so it shouldn't come as a surprise to see Peyton do so as well. We'll be disappointed if Peyton sees less than 20 fantasy points out of this.
Put 'em In The Game: Alfred Morris
It's tough to get excited with any Redskins running back as they tend to fall out of favor quickly with Mike Shanahan, but Alfred Morris has made it further than many thought he would - perhaps that's because he has been producing. The Falcons have an average run defense that has to contend with not only Morris by RG3 as well.
Put 'em In The Game: Ryan Mathews
The demotion of Mathews last week had fantasy nation screaming for Norv Turner's head, and why shouldn't they? When Mathews was finally able to play, his yards per carry made Jackie Battle look like a backup. Mathews should get the bulk of the carries this week against the Saints who are currently dead last in fantasy points allowed per game. This is Ryan Mathews break out game.
Put 'em In The Game: Cedric Benson
As a Packer fan, even I have to admit that Cedric Benson has looked a bit sluggish, even against the Saints. He's not going to break one open like Ray Rice or MJD but his matchup against the Colts this week makes him an attractive flex option. Gotta love the matchup here. He will likely deliver low-end double-digit fantasy points.
Put 'em In The Game: Brian Hartline
Those who had Brian Hartline in their lineups last week were rewarded for taking the risk (Joe from FFN had him starting in one of the FFN Users Leagues and was thrilled with the performance). It's hard to argue the numbers here. Hartline has been targeted by Ryan Tannehill 48 times - good for 3rd most in the NFL. It may be the 12 for 253 yd performance last week, but "Sleeper of the Year" is definitely within reach for Hartline. Don't expect a repeat of last week but a solid day is likely.
Put 'em In The Game: Jordy Nelson
Greg Jennings is doubtful again this week - not that he's done much of anything this season. That means that guys like Jordy Nelson and James Jones should be on your radar and in your lineups. The Colts are giving up the 8th-most fantasy points to wide receivers and the Green Bay offense is just starting to pick up.
Put 'em In The Game: Demaryius Thomas
Peyton Manning has said it over and over. He's never had a guy as big and fast as Demaryius Thomas before and it's clear that Thomas has become one of Manning's favorite targets. We're anticipating a shootout between two great offenses when the Broncos visit New England. Thomas could likely finish a Top 10 WR this week.
Put 'em In The Game: Dennis Pitta
A lot of emails came in last week about this guy. Don't let last week's skunking mess with your decision to start Dennis Pitta. The guy has been great so far this year reaching double digit fantasy points in two of his first three games. He's got a great rapport with Joe Flacco and one week does not equal doom. We're expecting a nice bounce back this week against the Chiefs.
Put 'em In The Game: Tony Gonzalez
Matt Ryan is putting up numbers consistent with an NFL MVP. He's been consistent and spreads the ball around. One guy who continues to benefit from this is Tony Gonzalez. The matchup is fantastic - the Redskins are giving up the 4th-most fantasy points to opposing tight ends. Look for Gonzalez's streak of solid games to continue this week.
Put 'em In The Game: Justin Tucker
Justin Tucker is available in nearly 40% of all leagues on Fleaflicker.com. He's the fourth best fantasy kicker right now facing a Chiefs defense that is giving up the 10th most fantasy points to opposing kickers. Kick away Justin...kick away.
Put 'em In The Game: Houston Texans
The San Francisco 49ers manhandled the New York Jets last week putting up insane fantasy points for a defense. The Houston Texans, the 2nd-ranked fantasy defense, will likely stop the Jets from trying to gain any momentum. With Santonio Holmes out for the year and a running game that has been questionable, the Jets will likely be no match for JJ Watt and the Texans.
Put 'em On The Bench: Ryan Fitzpatrick
Ryan Fitzpatrick has thrown a league-leading 12 scores in the first four games but it's the 7 interceptions that will likely haunt him as he faces the 4th-ranked fantasy defense. The 49ers are coming off a monster game against the Jets in which fantasy points were literally bled all over the field. Fitzpatrick could still have a good day (Christian Ponder did) but our expectations are certainly tempered this week.
Put 'em On The Bench: Matt Schaub
Even without superman Darrelle Revis, the Jets secondary is tough. They have given up the 9th-fewest fantasy points to opposing QB's. They are giving up the 2nd-most rushing yards and 5th-most fantasy points to opposing running backs. That means that while Schaub may struggle, Arian Foster likely won't. Once the Texans, courtesy of their dominating defense, build up a nice lead, Schaub won't have to throw very much. The Texans will be able to keep it on the ground.
Put 'em On The Bench: Rashard Mendenhall
So many folks have stashed Rashard Mendenhall on their bench waiting for him to return and revive what has been a lackluster Steelers rushing game. Just because he's back doesn't mean that you should plug him in right away. Resist that urge. The Eagles are a Top 10 rush defense and we have no idea what Mendy's going to look like in live action. I'd give it at least a week.
Put 'em On The Bench: Fred Jackson
Fred Jackson and CJ Spiller may be back and healthy but the defense they're facing is healthy and on a roll. Nobody runs against the 49ers. This well-established fact prohibits us from recommending either Jackson or Spiller this week.
Put 'em On The Bench: Michael Crabtree
What a disappointment Michael Crabtree has been so far in 2012. Vernon Davis and Frank Gore are all better receiving options right now. Crabtree hasn't been the deep threat that we hoped he'd be and he hasn't seen the endzone all year. He could have a big game against Buffalo but the odds are awfully slim.
Put 'em On The Bench: Steve Johnson
It just didn't look like Stevie Johnson and Ryan Fitzpatrick were on the same page last week against New England. Johnson didn't see near the targets that he should have. When Fitzpatrick throws for 4 scores and Johnson isn't one of the recipients, that's a problem. This week he'll face the 49ers who are ridiculously tough against the run but just as dominating against the pass. They remain a Top 5 fantasy defense against the pass which isn't what you want if Steve Johnson is in your lineup.
Put 'em On The Bench: Jermaine Gresham
Jermaine Gresham has the size, speed, and hands to be a dominating tight end, but his production doesn't show it. He's a bit of an enigma, particularly with his QB playing at such a high level. The Dolphins are average against the pass but they haven't allowed a single score yet from a TE. Gresham is the 17th-ranked fantasy tight end, so unless your primary TE is on bye, he should remain on your bench.
Put 'em On The Bench: Scott Chandler
How many people rushed out to grab Chandler (assuming he was still available) after his monster Week 4 performance? Now how many of those people are plugging him in and expecting a repeat? Hopefully your hand went down after the 2nd question. The Niners are giving up the 4th-fewest yards (36 yds/g) to TE's. Chandler's only saving grace will be a target in the endzone. He won't repeat last week's performance however.
Put 'em On The Bench: Nick Folk
If you can't get into field goal position, you can't kick field goals. If you can't score a TD, you can't kick extra points. This little recipe is why Nick Folk is not a solid play this week. The Texans D is formidable giving up the 3rd-fewest fantasy points to kickers.
Put 'em On The Bench: Denver Broncos
When Tom Brady, Gronk, Welker, and the remarkably talented backfield are on a roll, there's no stopping them. It should be a shootout when the Broncos face the Patriots - not the type of situation where you want a fantasy defense within 100 miles.

Join the Discussion

JACKASS PENGUIN CommentedOct 5, 2012 11:00 am

Good Afternoon Nerd:

In my flex position I have a choice of Jared Cook or Brandon Bolden, who would you use and why?

Thanks, JP

Rome24/7 CommentedOct 5, 2012 11:00 am

dear nerd:

i have four great backs but a very difficult decision to make because of there match ups this week please help with any advice... my backs are: the not 100% matt forte aginst a poor jacsonville D, the amazing MJD but going aginst an older but still good chicago D, the sensational rookie Alfred Morris but is going aginst a fast flying atlanta D, Or Darren Sproles whis always a good flex starter who i think will have a breakout game aginst his old team but HOW? HOW? do u sit the others??

Nerd CommentedOct 6, 2012 11:00 am

@JP - Jared Cook - more upside. Vikes are giving up the 8th-most fantasy points to TE's.

@Rome24/7 - That's a good problem to have. In Std scoring, I like MJD, Alfred Morris/Matt Forte (very close here), and then Sproles. In PPR, I like MJD, Matt Forte/Darren Sproles (very close here), and then Morris.

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