It all comes down to this, probably. For many of you, this is the last week of the fantasy regular season and playoff positioning could be on the line. These roster decisions are going to matter, so let’s try to get you that playoff spot you deserve. Here’s this week’s start/sit:
Start: Chris Carson, Seattle Seahawks
Carson continues to be Seattle’s lead back when he’s healthy and on the field. He’s had fewer than 14 carries in a game just once since Week 3. He’s been getting to the end zone, too, with a touchdown in three of the past four games. Seattle is likely to be up big against San Francisco, which should allow the Seahawks to continue feeding Carson throughout the game.
Start: Jordan Howard, Chicago Bears
The Bears are going to be without Mitchell Trubisky and will go with Chase Daniel for another game at quarterback. Chicago is already one of the most run-heavy teams in the league (45 percent overall) and they’ll likely be in the lead against a Giants team that has struggled to stop the run. Howard’s game against the Lions on Thanksgiving was the first of the season with fewer than 11 carries. It feels more like an outlier than the game plan with Daniel at quarterback.
Sit: Adrian Peterson, Washington Redskins
Peterson is so game script dependent, meaning when Washington is ahead he gets the ball and does quite well. But when Washington trails, the production typically goes away. Washington is a seven-point underdog in Philadelphia and while the Eagles haven’t played well lately, neither have the Redskins. Peterson is dealing with a shoulder injury and Monday night might feature the return of Chris Thompson to the lineup, which would significantly alter Peterson’s playing time in passing situations.
Sit: LeGarrette Blount, Detroit Lions
Don’t let the Thanksgiving touchdowns pull you in. Blount is red zone and touchdown dependent and while he got two against the Bears, that’s much less likely to happen against the Rams. With no added receiving value, a game trailing against Los Angeles is more fit for Theo Riddick to get more snaps at running back than Blount, whose only real purpose is to fall forward for two yards on each carry.
Start: Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions
Because the Lions are likely to trail and they will be throwing often, Kenny Golladay should be heavily involved. He had a quiet five catches and 90 yards last week against the Bears and was targeted on 41.6 percent of Detroit’s air yards in the game. Aqib Talib is likely to be back in the lineup for the Rams, which makes the secondary a more difficult matchup, but with how often the Lions should be passing, Golladay is still going to get a good target share and opportunity to produce.
Start: Corey Davis, Tennessee Titans
Davis is fourth among receivers in percentage of his team’s targeted air yards this season. That’s a sign of opportunity and how involved a receiver is in his team’s passing game. Davis had four receptions for 96 and a touchdown on four targets against a pretty good Houston secondary. The Jets have allowed the 10th most fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers this season and Davis is really the only option for the Titans there right now.
Sit: Calvin Ridley, Atlanta Falcons
Ridley had one of his nice games against the Saints on Thanksgiving night — 13 targets, 8 receptions, 93 yards, and a touchdown. That came against the second and third corners for a secondary that has been improving, but still isn’t among the league’s best. The Ravens’ secondary is among the league’s best and that type of production is going to be harder to come by against a team that has allowed the fourth-fewest fantasy points to wide receivers this season.
Sit: Anthony Miller, Chicago Bears
Miller hasn’t been as involved in the game plan over the past two weeks with just a combined seven targets. If that continues to be his workload, he’s going to be touchdown dependent to start in fantasy and the Bears might not be passing all that often against the Giants. Too many things have to break right for Miller to matter, and that’s going to risky in a game that’s likely to mean a lot to you for playoff positioning.
Start: Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Jameis Winston as the starter is better for Brate’s production — the two have a chemistry that was not the same with Fitzpatrick under center. Brate also gets the bump from O.J. Howard being out and facing a Carolina Panthers team that has allowed the second-most fantasy points per game to opposing tight ends.
Sit: Jordan Reed, Washington Redskins
Reed got eight targets in Colt McCoy’s debut against the Cowboys, which is a good sign for how the quarterback might rely on the tight end. But the Eagles have been good defending against the position — fourth-fewest fantasy points per game — and Josh Doctson got 10 targets (Doctson is a sneaky start if you need a receiver). Against the Eagles’ secondary, Washington might be more likely to involve the wide receivers and if Chris Thompson returns, that will also reduce Reed’s share of the offense.