Week 15: Start & Bench

12/11/2012 5:48 pm by in Fantasy Football Articles, Fantasy Football Expert Analysis, Start Bench Advice


Playoffs are starting. Stick with your studs! Trust your gut! Win the game! You won’t find the “usual suspects” listed here.


  • Josh Freeman: Josh Freeman put up 420/3 the last time these two teams met. He may not match those numbers this week but he’s a strong starting option if you don’t have anyone better. 281/2 with upside

  • Cam Newton: This guy is too hot to sit. 223/1, 60/1 on the ground.

  • Matthew Stafford: Arizona just gave up 58 points and Matthew Stafford leads the league in passing yardage at his point of the season. Keep him active. 312/2

  • Colin Kaepernick: It is tough to decide in which category to list Colin Kaepernick. He faces a Patriot’s defense that has trouble with mobile quarterbacks. His ability to extend plays will help his receivers and what he doesn’t produce through the air he could on the ground. 222/1/1 with 52 rushing yards and maybe a TD. Don’t depend on him to carry you to a championship if you have a quarterback with a better matchup.

  • Carson Palmer: If you don’t have a better option Carson Palmer is at home against a Chiefs team that has given up multiple touchdowns in six of their last eight games. 251/2

  • Andrew Luck: Sacks and picks and another road game, “Oh My!”. Andrew Luck has six interceptions in his last two road games. He’s averaged 312 passing yards in his last four road games with seven touchdown passes, eight interceptions and you may not have a better option. The Colts can spread the ball and attack the Texan defense. 277/2/2

  • Stevan Ridley: Stevan Ridley has scored in six consecutive games and failed to run for 71 yards in only one. This isn’t an easy matchup against the 49ers but there is no reason to sit him. 71/1

  • Knowshon Moreno: Knowshon Moreno has emerged as a three down back for the Broncos getting the bulk of the carries. The Ravens have given up at least 91 yards rushing in four consecutive games and with Moreno getting most of the carries he should produce over 100 total yards. Start him as an RB2 with confidence.

  • Bilal Powell/Shonn Greene: In their last three home games the Titans have surrendered an average of 138 rushign yards to the Texans, Bears and Colts. This may be a RBBC but either RB could be used as a flex with Powell getting the nod if you are desperate for a RB2. Powell has scored four touchdowns in three of his last four games. Both running back should be good for 70 yards rushing with Powell the best bet for a TD.

  • BenJarvus Green-Ellis: With four consecutive games with over 100 total yards BGE is a RB2 against the Eagles. 83/1 on the ground, 3/18 receiving with upside.

  • C.J. Spiller: With Fred Jackson out for the remainder of the year C.J. Spiller will get the majority of touches going forward. Even with a tough matchup at home against the Seahawks he’s worth a start as a RB2 or flex. He should produce 100 total yards.

  • Joique Bell/ Mikel LeShoure: The Lions are thin at wide receiver and Joique Bell could get a few more looks as a result. He faces a Cardinal team that just gave up four rushing touchdowns. He monopolizes passing downs and is at least a flex option this week in ppr leagues given his recent performances. Mikel LeShoure is also a flex option given the matchup. Bell – 80 total yards with 4 receptions and a possible TD; LeShoure – 70/1

  • Bryce Brown: Bryce Brown will have an easier time of it this week. If your team is still active after last week’s performance you can start him again with confidence on a short week against a middle of the road Bengal rush defense. LeSean McCoy is out for this week. 77/1

  • Reggie Bush: The Jaguars are the second best matchup for running backs. Reggie Bush has had three consecutive productive games and should continue that at home this week. 77 yards rushing, 3/24 receiving.

  • Josh Gordon: Start him if you own him against the Redskins 31st ranked pass defense. 6/79/1

  • Steve Johnson: The Seahawks are a different defense on the road. Though he is unlikely to score Steven Johnson should continue to produce and be in your lineup. 5/63

  • Chris Givens: Chris Givens has earned WR2/3 status on his own, with or without Danny Amendola in the lineup. 5/68

  • Michael Crabtree: Michael Crabtree continues to be a dependable WR3. Against the Patriots he has WR2 upside especially if the Patriots get up. 6/83/1

  • Randall Cobb: Randall Cobb has averaged 5/60 recently. He gets enough targets to trust as a WR2 against a reeling Bears defense. 5/54/1

  • Danario Alexander: He has established himself as a weekly plug and play as a WR2. 6/74/1

  • Mike Wallace: With Ben Roethlisberger back Mike Wallace returns to must start status. 5/66/1

  • Pierre Garcon: Regardless of the quarterback Pierre Garcon will continue to get the targets. 5/76/1

  • Ben Watson.: The Redskins are so vulnerable against the tight end that Ben Watson makes his lone appearance on this list. 4/49 with upside

  • Dennis Pitta: Dennis Pitta faces the Broncos, a top three matchup for tight ends. The Ravens will have to pass to stay with Peyton Manning and company. 4/45/1

  • Martellus Bennett: Do you have a better option? 5/54

  • Health Miller: Health Miller has been very consistent over the last three games. 4/61

  • Dallas Clark: Facing a very generous Saints secondary and a top five matchup for tight ends Dallas Clark deserves a look if you need a tight end. 4/56


  • Nick Foles: Do not go chasing last week’s production. 255/1/2

  • Jake Locker: There are better options than Jake Locker against the Jets on Monday night. Expect the Jets to load the line and dare Locker to beat them. The Jets might be a defense to consider this week. 193/1/2

  • Jay Cutler: Jay Cutler is expected to start against the Packers, that does not mean he should start for you. He put up 126/1/4 numbers in Week 2. 226/1/2

  • Chris Johnson: Four starting offensive linemen are lost for the season. Teams are stacking the line daring Jake Locker to beat them. Expect the same this week. If you don’t have a better option you’ll have to go with him but he could have a tough time finding room to run. 73 yards rushing.

  • Michael Turner: If all you need is a touchdown Michael Turner has scored in four consecutive games. He’s had decent (102/46/83) rushing yards every other week for the last six weeks. He’s “due” this week but if the Packers get up early, and against the Falcon’s secondary they could, Turner will once again lose touches to Jaquizz Rodgers. 47/1

  • Larry Fitzgerald: No quarterback.

  • Kenny Britt: Antonio Cromartie.

  • Antonio Gates: Scoreless in his last four games and hasn’t exceeded 57 yards receiving since Week 6. If you’ve seen him play he just doesn’t look like the same player he was, seems age has caught up to athleticism.. 4/43

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8 Comments so far

  1. Rick Sonn December 11th, 2012 7:23 pm

    Hi Tavaner,

    in nonppr, I need one…

    Demarco, McFadden, Bryce, or Knowshon?

    Thanks! Happy holidays!

  2. kostermatt December 11th, 2012 7:24 pm

    PPR…. Spiller or Bush…. or cj johnson but i ruled him out

  3. kostermatt December 11th, 2012 7:29 pm

    Romo or kaepernick…. i don’t feel good about either… what’s your thoughts?

  4. Tavaner December 11th, 2012 8:15 pm

    Hey Rick,

    Holiday Wishes to you and yours as well, thanks!

    Murray get’s Pitt a top four defense vs RBs.

    McFadden is tough to trust. They are easing him back in and he had only 11 carries last week. Not sure he gets enough carries. The Chiefs give up 131 ypg on the ground but only 7 TDs on the season.

    The Bengals haven’t given up over 87 yds to any runner since returning from their bye in Week 9. They’ve given up only 2 TDs on the ground in that time.

    Moreno is averaging 3.8 ypc but he gets 24+ touches a game with an average of 4/29 receiving..which is right in line with what the Ravens surrender.

    A lot of people could hype Brown as a bounce back against the Bengals and I can’t argue with that. I would point out that the Bengals held Murray to 53 yards and this will be a short week. I’d go with Moreno. He’ll be involved no matter the score.

    Good Luck!

  5. Tavaner December 11th, 2012 8:42 pm

    Hey Matt,

    Bush has a great matchup agaisnt the Jaguars, ranked 31st vs the run. He’s been getting roughly 15 touches a game, though last game he has 19.

    Spiller has been electic when he’s getting the bulk touches, and he should get those this week. His matchup is much tougher but his upside is way higher than Bush’s.

    Play it safe – Bush. Boom/bust – Spiller.

    As for Romo or Kaepernick…at this point it’s flip a coin. Kaepernick’s edge is his mobility. Maybe Romo throws for three touchdowns like Rivers did last week but prior to that the Steelers had held QBs to one TD since Week 7.

    I’m thinking both QBs are in the 180-210 passing yards range with a TD. Those yards on the ground for Kaepernick make the difference.

  6. alnation1 December 12th, 2012 9:50 am

    Non PPR:#1: either TE Jimmy Graham or TE Aaron Hernandez?
    #2: either WR Britt or WR Antonio Brown?

  7. Tavaner December 12th, 2012 11:15 am

    Hey nation,

    Both TEs are strong plays this week.

    Only recently, last two games for obvious reasons, Hernandez is getting more targets 24/16.

    I don’t think you can sit Graham against that Bucs secondary. It’s a much easier matchup. While he has struggled recently at this point I’d go with Graham.

    At WR Britt is the guy even though he’ll likely face Antonio Cromartie. Brown has done nothing lately.

    Good Luck!

  8. nygiant December 12th, 2012 12:24 pm

    IDP Question- Aldon Smith vs NE or Brad Jones vs AP & MINN? Point per tackle and 3 pts per sack.

    DEF start- DET @ AZ or TENN vs NYJ? Leaning heavily toward DET.

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