Start 'Em, Sit 'Em: Week 13
Which fantasy players are poised to shine and which should ride the pine?
11/30/09 - Dear Diary,
Maybe if Randy Moss spent less time cultivating his Chia-Beard (which looks like it may contain some small woodland creatures), he would have performed better against the DBs New Orleans signed off the street. And as for Belichick pulling his starters late, don't tell me it was to avoid injury. He certainly doesn't worry about that when he's running it up on weaker opponents.
Here are this week's starts:
Brett Favre -- The Cardinals have surrendered at least 331 passing yards in three of their last four and five times this year. Meanwhile, Father Time has four 300-yard games this season and has tossed 12 TDs compared to zero picks in his last four.
Donovan McNabb -- McNabb came alive just in time to avoid a potentially embarrassing loss to the Redskins. Against an Atlanta pass defense that has allowed at least two passing scores in six of their last seven, expect a more complete performance.
Carson Palmer -- 26. No, that's not the number of old people I stiff-armed to get a $250 TV at Target on Black Friday. It's the number of passing TDs surrendered by the Lions. Maybe the Bengals grind it out like they did last week, but I'll take my chances.
Philip Rivers -- Christmas has come early for Rivers with the Chiefs and Browns in back-to-back weeks. He hung 317 yards and two scores on KC, and while the Bengals were content to bludgeon the Browns on the ground, expect more passing from the Bolts.
Alex Smith -- The 49ers are opening up the offense, and Smith played well against Jacksonville. This week he faces a Seattle D who has allowed 15 passing TDs and 277 passing yards per game over the last six.
Matt Forte -- What do the Browns and Lions have in common? Yes, both are pathetic and have made a number of people dislike football. They're also the only teams to allow Forte in the end zone (and to rush for over 66 yards). Not so coincidentally, the Rams are also woeful and rank 28th against the run, meaning the stars have aligned for Forte.
Thomas Jones -- A quick math lesson: Run-first offense + League's worst run D = Good matchup.
Rashard Mendenhall -- With Ben Roethlisberger sidelined, the Ravens loaded up to shut down Mendenhall, but he still got the job done. After that slugfest, facing the 31st-ranked Oakland run defense will be like a tickle fight.
Knowshon Moreno -- That's now three straight games with at least 80 rushing yards for Moreno, which is more than enough momentum heading into a matchup with Kansas City's 27th-ranked unit.
LaDainian Tomlinson -- As I said last week, the burst isn't there and the yards per carry are ugly, but L.T. has seven TDs in the last five games. The Browns made Larry Johnson look revitalized, and without Shaun Rogers, there will be plenty of running room.
Cadillac Williams -- Caddy has two TDs in his last three games and ran for 77 yards and a score in the first meeting with Carolina. The Panthers have allowed at least one rushing TD in 10 straight games, proving that consistency isn't always good.
Jason Avant -- If DeSean Jackson sits with a concussion, the Eagles will start Reggie Brown outside and keep Avant in the slot. McNabb seems to trust Avant, and he's posted 17 receptions, 276 yards, and two scores over the last three games.
Donald Driver -- Driver had a huge Thanksgiving, and the Ravens have issues in the secondary against top passing attacks. The Pack will have to throw it to win this one, and I like Driver to post another solid outing.
Pierre Garcon -- Peyton Manning continues to use Garcon to stretch the field, and he is averaging 66.8 yards over the past five games. The Titans secondary is playing better, but I think Garcon gets loose for a big play.
Percy Harvin/Sidney Rice -- Re-read the stats about Arizona's pass defense that I mentioned above. If that doesn't convince you, nothing will.
Brandon Marshall -- After 86 yards against the Giants, Marshall gets a crack at Kansas City's atrocious pass defense. They have allowed nine different receivers to rack up at least 77 yards this year.
Chad Ochocinco -- The Lions give up the second most fantasy points to opposing wideouts, and they've surrendered 765 receiving yards and six TDs to WRs over the past three games.
Kevin Walter -- With Owen Daniels injured, Walter has returned to the fantasy radar. He's averaging 5.3 receptions and 62 yards over the last three, and against a suspect Jags secondary, he could find the end zone.
Brent Celek -- McNabb will look his way even more if DeSean Jackson is out, and Atlanta has struggled against opposing tight ends.
Tony Scheffler -- He's inconsistent, but if you need a flier, the Chiefs have allowed 231 yards and three scores to opposing TEs over the past two weeks.
Until tomorrow, diary...
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