Week 8 Sit-Start Where to Put em

Thursday, Oct 25, 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 8 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, Calvin 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: Ben Roethlisberger
With changes in the backfield, Big Ben and the Steelers have been putting an emphasis on their passing game. That's great news for fantasy owners and we're expecting a nice week out of Roethlisberger against the Redskins. Washington is giving up a league-worst 330 yards through the air and more than 20 fantasy points every game. Big Ben should put up Big Numbers.
Put 'em In The Game: Andrew Luck
This is a matchup that you can't overlook. The Titans are giving up 288 yards per game, and even on the road, Andrew Luck should be able to take advantage of that. Tennessee has allowed multiple passing TD's all season long. Expect a healthy dose of shots to Reggie Wayne both short and downfield. Luck should have a great day.
Put 'em In The Game: Peyton Manning
This will be the last week we have Peyton Manning on this list as we're moving him to the must-start list. Any lingering concerns about his neck are long gone. When he faces off against the Saints on Sunday night, he'll be playing against a team that has given up more fantasy points to opposing QB's than anyone else. Peyton should light it up.
Put 'em In The Game: Sam Bradford
We should see some jolly ol' points out of Sam Bradford in jolly ol' England. The Patriots give up 300 yards per game through the air (5th-worst in the NFL) and multiple scores. If you're looking for a bye-week filler, Sam Bradford's matchup is fantastic and could help pull you through Week 8. Bob's your Uncle.
Put 'em In The Game: Reggie Bush
Coming off a restful bye week, Reggie Bush should be in great condition to finish what he started in Week 3. According to Fleaflicker.com, the Jets are giving up 162 total scrimmage yards and averaging 1 score per game. Bush should post solid numbers, particularly in PPR formats.
Put 'em In The Game: Rashad Jennings
With Maurice Jones-Drew out, Rashad Jennings will be the main rushing threat for Jacksonville when they come into Lambeau Field to face the Packers. Green Bay's rush defense is ranked 16th in the league with 128 yards given up on the ground each game. Jennings makes for a great RB2 or Flex play this week.
Put 'em In The Game: Chris Johnson
It has been nice to see CJ2K again. First - the sobering news. If we take away his big runs, his yards per carry is still terrible. The line hasn't improved very much. The good news is that when he has been able to break free, he's made the most of those opportunities. He should have a few chances for big plays against the Colts this week who are giving up the 5th-most fantasy points to RB's.
Put 'em In The Game: Josh Gordon
Who knew Cleveland had a passing game? Josh Gordon has found his groove over the past few weeks and a matchup against the Chargers should help him keep rolling. He's being targeted more, and even though he hasn't had more than 3 catches, he's found the endzone 4 times over the last 3 weeks. He's a great WR3 or Flex play this week.
Put 'em In The Game: Reggie Wayne
Reggie Wayne is playing at such a high level this year and has become Luck's #1 target that you simply can't sit him, particularly in PPR formats. We love Wayne for the same reasons we love Luck this week. The Titans are allowing opposing WR1's to score more than 20 fantasy points each week. Expect Luck to target Wayne often in this game.
Put 'em In The Game: Eric Decker
Let's be honest - fantasy points are in abundance with any game where the Broncos or the Saints are playing. The fact that the Broncos play the Saints makes this an even more interesting game. Peyton will go to the air quite a bit and that means that Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas have to be in your lineup. With the Saints giving up the 2nd-most fantasy points to wide receivers, we love this matchup!
Put 'em In The Game: Greg Olsen
Call this a revenge matchup. Greg Olsen will be facing his former team this week and the Bears are giving up the 10th-most fantasy points to opposing TE's. When the matchup is good, Olsen can be a great play - particularly if you're looking for a bye-week candidate.
Put 'em In The Game: Heath Miller
Go back to your draft day and try to picture where Heath Miller was being taken. Would you have guessed that he'd be a Top 5 tight end after 7 weeks? Well, that's where he finds himself. He has nowhere to go but up against a Redskins defense that gives up more yards and fantasy points to opposing tight ends than any other team in the NFL.
Put 'em In The Game: Mason Crosby
As far as kickers go, Mason Crosby has normally been one of the better ones in the league. 2012 hasn't been kind to him as the Packers struggled early on and Crosby is in the lower half of fantasy production. Things should turn around this week at home against the Jaguars who are giving up the 4th-most fantasy points to kickers. Kick away Mason, kick away.
Put 'em In The Game: Seattle Seahawks
The Lions run game is inconsistent and Matt Stafford and company do not look like the offensive powerhouse that we all expected. Seattle's secondary has really turned it on as of late making many top QB's and WR's look quite mortal. Defenses playing against Detroit regularly finish the week in the Top 5. This is a great week to plug Seattle into your lineup.
Put 'em On The Bench: Cam Newton
How many people spent a first or second round pick on Cam Newton this year only to find his performance to date disappointing in relation to where you drafted him? That's not going to get any better this week. The Bears have been brutal on opposing QB's giving up the fewest fantasy points to them and the 2nd fewest TD's. If you have a better option, play it. If you don't, temper your expectations. Romo, Rodgers, Stafford, and Luck have all struggled against Da Bears.
Put 'em On The Bench: Matthew Stafford
We would expect Matthew Stafford to struggle this week against the Seahawks who are giving up the 2nd-fewest fantasy points to opposing QB's this year. Stafford hasn't been himself and that doesn't bode well against a defense that, like the Bears above, has forced guys like Romo and Rodgers to struggle.
Put 'em On The Bench: Mikel Leshoure
We feel guilty putting another Lion on this list, but it's not like the run game is going to do much better than the passing game this week. Seattle gives up the 4th-fewest fantasy points to opposing rushers and they haven't given up a rushing TD since Week 3 which coincidentally is the last time Leshoure has seen a rushing score. It's a tough matchup to expect much out of him this week.
Put 'em On The Bench: Shonn Greene
Will he be the star on that offense or won't he? Lately Shonn Greene has been the man. He obliterated the Colts and did a number on the Patriots. He'll struggle this week against the Dolphins who held him to a pathetic 2 yards/carry in Week 3. Only Arian Foster has scored a rushing TD on the Dolphins this year and Greene is no Foster. If you need Greene, go ahead and play him, but lower your expectations.
Put 'em On The Bench: Brandon Lloyd
Brandon Lloyd has been anything but consistent this year. As a boom or bust type of player, it's very difficult to predict what kind of performance he'll turn in. We're wagering that he'll be a bust this week facing one of the more talented cornerback teams in the NFL. The Rams allow the 10th-fewest fantasy points to opposing WR's and there's too much talent on the Patriots to even think about Lloyd becoming the #1 option there. The numbers just don't paint a pretty picture here.
Put 'em On The Bench: Steve Smith
As one of the most dynamic and talented players in the NFL, it has been a disappointment to see Steve Smith put up this kind of lackluster performance. The Bears give up the 9th-fewest fantasy points to opposing WR's and you can expect Charles Tillman to be all over Smith. Tillman shut down Megatron on Monday night which is a difficult task. Considering Smith hasn't seen the endzone yet, it's a bit of a stretch to think he'll be able to do that against Tillman and the Bears.
Put 'em On The Bench: Brian Hartline
Even without superstud Darrelle Revis, the Jets have a blanket secondary. Antonio Cromartie is playing at an elite level shutting down every elite wide receiver. If Andre Johnson and Reggie Wayne couldn't get into the endzone or produce solid fantasy days, there's no reason to expect Brian Hartline to do so.
Put 'em On The Bench: Jermichael Finley
Whether it's because he doesn't have a rapport or chemistry with Aaron Rodgers or he just has a long running case of the drops, Jermichael Finley hasn't lived up to his expectations in relation to where he was drafted. Jacksonville gives up the 3rd-fewest fantasy points to opposing TE's and Finley hasn't played at the kind of level to where you can trust his performance.
Put 'em On The Bench: Alex Henery
We had higher expectations for Alex Henery than the level that he has performed at so far. The Eagles as a team haven't performed where we expected them to. Henery is a byproduct of that and as a result has been one of the least productive kickers in the league. His matchup against the Falcons doesn't make this any better. Kickers have either struggled or haven't seen the types of opportunities needed to put up points as the Falcons give up the 2nd-fewest points to them.
Put 'em On The Bench: Pittsburgh Steelers
Injuries and poor play have taken an elite fantasy defense like the Steelers and rendered them impotent. Pittsburgh has been one of the Top 10 least productive fantasy defenses in 2012. A matchup with RG3 and the Redskins isn't a recipe for a solid day. That offense is potent enough to put numbers on the scoreboard and the Steelers may not be able to stop them. There are much better options this week.

Join the Discussion

bmaclaughlin CommentedOct 26, 2012 11:00 am

Would you be willing to answer a question? I have 5 receivers available for 2 spots (1 WR and 1 Flex). I have DeSean Jackson, Kenny Britt, Josh Gordon, Brandon Gibson and Jeremy Kerley. Which 2 would you start. I already have Julio Jones and James Jones starting at WR.



Nerd CommentedOct 26, 2012 11:00 am

Standard scoring: DeSean Jackson, Kenny Britt, Brandon Gibson, Jeremy Kerley, Josh Gibson

PPR: DeSean Jackson, Kenny Britt, Josh Gibson, Jeremy Kerley, Brandon Gibson

MurphNut CommentedOct 26, 2012 11:00 am

We start 3 WR/TE's -- got Injury / BYE week issues:

Jennings and Graham are hurt -- Daniels and Hawkins on a BYE.

Only got 3 WR's left: A Brown, Cobb and D Moore.

Andre Roberts is avail after 8pm tonight -- worth picking up & STARTING vs SF?

Trsjufku CommentedOct 27, 2012 11:00 am

I have a real problem this week. I have too many good players in too many good matchups.

WRs victor cruz, Marques colston, Eric decker,

RBs Marshawn lynch, Reggie bush, rashard Jennings

Is a WR WR RB RB flex league.

I have colston benched, but I'm thinking it should be Jennings.

Any suggestions?

Nerd CommentedOct 27, 2012 11:00 am

@MurphNut - I'm not a big fan of Roberts this week.

@Trsjufku - I'd put Colston in over Jennings because of his big play potential. If Graham doesn't play, Colston's targets will go up in what will most certainly be a shoot out.

Good luck guys!

bmaclaughlin CommentedOct 28, 2012 11:00 am

TE - Olsen or Dreesen. The Dreesen match-up is great against NO with Manning throwing. The last two weeks are better for Dreesen. But every website out there has Olsen ranked ahead of Dreesen. Thoughts?


PS. Just became a premium member. Love the lineup analyzer.

Nerd CommentedOct 28, 2012 11:00 am

Thanks Mac!

Agreed on the matchup against the Saints, however I have this same dilemma in one of my league and I'm personally rolling with the revenge matchup of Olsen against the Bears.

Good luck to both of us.

bmaclaughlin CommentedOct 28, 2012 11:00 am

One more question.... I know I already asked you a WR/Flex question, but I am starting to worry about the weather and the passing game on the east coast. In a PPR league do you mind ranking these receivers? I get 3 WR and one Flex. Here is how I have them now.


Julio Jones

James Jones

DeSean Jackson


Kenny Britt


Jeremy Kerley

Josh Gordon

Jeremy Kerley

Nerd CommentedOct 28, 2012 11:00 am

I wouldn't change a thing

bmaclaughlin CommentedOct 28, 2012 11:00 am

Thanks! Give 'em heck today.


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