Start 'Em & Sit 'Em is our weekly look at the best and worst matchups from around the NFL and how they might affect lineup decisions for your Fantasy Football team. We are not in the business of stating the obvious, so you won't be reading here why you need to start Drew Brees, Chris Johnson, Andre Johnson or any other top-tier players.
Listen to our latest Fantasy Football Podcast!
Matt Schaub has been a disappointment for Fantasy owners this year. He hasn't lived up to his preseason status.
Schaub was selected as the No. 5 quarterback based on his average draft position on CBSSports.com, but he's the No. 17 ranked passer in standard scoring formats. He actually has fewer Fantasy points than Mark Sanchez, Matt Cassel, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Josh Freeman and David Garrard, who weren't drafted in the majority of leagues.
Schaub only has four games this season with at least 19 Fantasy points but five games with less than 12 points. It hasn't been pretty, and Fantasy owners have suffered. There are several reasons why with the development of Arian Foster, injuries to Andre Johnson (ankle) and Owen Daniels (hamstring), inconsistent play on the offensive line and a lack of production from Jacoby Jones and Kevin Walter.
But this is a good week to count on Schaub. He has a great matchup -- and a great history -- against the Titans, and he's our Start of the Week.
Tennessee has allowed multiple touchdown passes against Denver, Dallas, San Diego and Miami. Four quarterbacks have reached at least 19 Fantasy points against the Titans and five have passed for at least 300 yards, including last week when Donovan McNabb had 376 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
Schaub carved up the Titans in two meetings last year with 662 passing yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions. And he should find similar success in the first of two matchups with Tennessee this year. We also expect Johnson to have a solid game, and Joel Dreessen is worth starting as a sleeper tight end.
It's been frustrating to watch Schaub struggle. But this is a good week to trust him as the No. 1 Fantasy quarterback you expected him to be.
|Player||Fantasy Points (projected)||Fantasy Points (actual)||Start percentage|
|Jon Kitna, QB, Cowboys||18||33||34|
|Fred Jackson, RB, Bills*||14||24||72|
|Santonio Holmes, WR, Jets||13||24||69|
|Andre Johnson, WR, Texans||8||3||90|
|Jay Cutler, QB, Chicago||16||6||28|
|Tony Gonzalez, TE, Falcons||4||4||68|
|Shonn Greene, RB, Jets||12||2||37|
|Mario Manningham, WR, Giants||11||2||61|
|Michael Crabtree, WR, 49ers||12||1||56|
|Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, Bills||15||33||12|
|Santana Moss, WR, Redskins||7||16||32|
|Mike Goodson, RB, Panthers||7||15||15|
|Our favorite sleeper in Week 11 was ... James Jones, who had 11 Fantasy points at Minnesota and was started in just 25 percent of leagues. He had more Fantasy points than Calvin Johnson (10), Roddy White (10) and DeSean Jackson (five).|
Ben Roethlisberger (at BUF): Roethlisberger is coming off two outstanding games and should be able to make it three in a row against the Bills. Buffalo has allowed multiple touchdown passes to seven quarterbacks this year, and Roethlisberger has four games with at least two touchdowns in six starts, including two in a row against New England and Oakland. He has 662 passing yards, seven total touchdowns and one interception over that span, and he should be considered a must-start Fantasy option in the majority of leagues. Not even a Richard Seymour slap to the head stopped Roethlisberger from playing well last week.
Shaun Hill (vs. NE): Hill played well last week against Dallas with 289 passing yards, two touchdowns and one interception. It was his fourth game with at least 21 Fantasy points in seven starts this season, and it's clear the Detroit passing attack will continue to post quality production. He has solid targets in Calvin Johnson, Nate Burleson and Brandon Pettigrew, and the running game has stalled with injuries to Jahvid Best (toe) and Kevin Smith (thumb). Hill also has attempted at least 43 passes five times this season, so he's going to keep attacking the defense. The Patriots have allowed seven touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks the past two games against Roethlisberger and Peyton Manning with 783 passing yards over that span. Five quarterbacks have passed for at least 300 yards against New England, with seven throwing multiple touchdowns.
Joe Flacco (vs. TB): Flacco has put up outstanding stats in his past five games and has the chance for another good performance this week against the Bucs. In his past five outings against New England, Buffalo, Miami, Atlanta and Carolina, Flacco has 11 touchdowns and one interception with at least 250 passing yards in four of those games. He also has been stellar at home with 13 total touchdowns and no interceptions in his past five games in Baltimore, while averaging 242 passing yards over that span. The Bucs are No. 6 in pass defense, but four quarterbacks have thrown for multiple touchdowns, including Charlie Batch and Sam Bradford. Look for Flacco to be next on the list as his breakout season continues.
Kyle Orton (vs. STL): Orton struggled last week at San Diego, but he should bounce back this week at home against the Rams. In his past five home games, Orton is averaging 297 passing yards with 10 touchdowns and two interceptions. The Rams have only allowed two quarterbacks to pass for multiple touchdowns against them this season, but they have allowed 609 passing yards and three touchdowns in the past two games against Troy Smith and Matt Ryan, which may be a sign of them slowing down. Orton should rebound in this matchup after just 12 Fantasy points last week against the Chargers, which was his worst game of the season. You know he's going to keep throwing since he's averaged 39 attempts a game this year, and we'll take our chances with Orton's production in this offense when he's at home.
Mark Sanchez (vs. CIN): Hopefully it won't take overtime or any late-game heroics for Sanchez to produce this week, but he's been outstanding the past three games against Detroit, Cleveland and Houston with an average of 27 Fantasy points over that span. He's connecting well with Santonio Holmes, who is a big reason for his success and has returned as a must-start Fantasy option, and we don't expect Sanchez to slow down in this matchup with the Bengals. Cincinnati's secondary fell apart last week against Buffalo and allowed Fitzpatrick to pass for 316 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions. The Bengals have allowed three quarterbacks to throw for multiple touchdowns against them this year, and Sanchez has the chance to make it four with the way he's playing coming into this game.
Sleeper alert: Matt Cassel (at SEA): Cassel has been among the best quarterbacks the past six games with at least 19 Fantasy points in five of those outings, including three in a row. He has taken advantage of some quality matchups against Houston, Jacksonville, Buffalo, Denver and Arizona, and this game against the Seahawks falls in line based on Seattle being No. 30 in pass defense. Six quarterbacks have thrown for multiple touchdowns against the Seahawks, and they have allowed 994 passing yards, eight touchdowns and three interceptions the past three games against Eli Manning, Derek Anderson and Drew Brees. Cassel has a great rapport right now with Dwayne Bowe, and he is worth using a starter in the majority of leagues based on his recent play. For more sleeper quarterbacks, including Brett Favre, click here.
Jay Cutler (vs. PHI): This is not a good week to trust Cutler. The Eagles lead the NFL in interceptions with 19 and are among the league leaders in sacks with 26. They have more interceptions than touchdowns allowed in their past three games against Peyton Manning, McNabb and Eli Manning. Cutler faced this Eagles defense last year at home and passed for 171 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He has three touchdowns and three interceptions in his past two games against Minnesota and Miami, and in his past five games at home he has seven touchdowns, eight interceptions and two fumbles.
Carson Palmer (at NYJ): The Jets pass defense has stepped up recently and should be able to contain Palmer in this matchup, especially with Palmer dealing with a foot injury. The Jets have shut down Orton, Aaron Rodgers and Schaub in three of the past five games, and Palmer struggled against the Jets in the playoffs last year with 146 passing yards, one touchdown and one interception. Palmer does have multiple touchdown passes in each of his past seven games, but he also has multiple interceptions in three of those outings, including the past two against Indianapolis and Buffalo. We expect Palmer to be throwing a lot in this matchup, but that could lead to negative results based some of his performances recently against the Colts and Bills.
Jon Kitna (vs. NO): Kitna has been amazing for Fantasy owners since Jason Garrett took over as the head coach. In his past two games, Kitna has seven total touchdowns with one interception against the Giants and Detroit, and he's averaging 31 Fantasy points over that span. But New Orleans should slow down Kitna's production since the Saints are No. 2 in pass defense with only seven touchdowns allowed. Ryan in Week 3 is the only quarterback to pass for multiple touchdowns against the Saints, and Kitna could easily revert back to his turnover-prone ways (he had six interceptions in his first two starts in place of the injured Tony Romo). Now, Kitna might face a depleted New Orleans secondary with Malcolm Jenkins (neck) and Darren Sharper (hamstring) dealing with injuries, so keep that in mind when setting your lineup. But we expect Kitna to struggle this week.
David Garrard (at NYG): Garrard struggled last week against Cleveland with just 14 Fantasy points in what should have been a good matchup, but it was his first game without Mike Sims-Walker (ankle). Sims-Walker is out again this week, and Garrard could have another bad game. The Giants are No. 3 in pass defense, and they have been great against opposing quarterbacks at home. Kitna is the only quarterback to throw for multiple touchdowns in New York, and the Giants have shut down Vince Young, Cutler, Schaub and Hill in home matchups this year. Garrard has done a fantastic job this season for Fantasy owners, but this is a game we would keep him on the bench based on the matchup.
Donovan McNabb (vs. MIN): McNabb is coming off a solid game last week against the Titans with 376 passing yards, one touchdown and one interception, but he could be in trouble this week. I'm expecting the Vikings to come out motivated for this game now that Leslie Frazier has been promoted from defensive coordinator to interim head coach in place of the fired Brad Childress. Just look at what the Dallas offense has done since Garrett was promoted from offensive coordinator to replace Wade Phillips, and this move should have a similar impact on Minnesota's defense. We know that McNabb is prone to bad outings already with five games this season with 15 Fantasy points or less, including two at home, and we might see the Vikings best defensive performance of the season if they are fired up as expected to play for Frazier.
Bust alert: Ryan Fitzpatrick (vs. PIT): Fitzpatrick was impressive last week with 33 Fantasy points against the Bengals, but he took advantage of Cincinnati's secondary falling apart in the second half when Chris Crocker (knee), Roy L. Williams (concussion) and Johnathan Joseph (ankle) got hurt. Fitzpatrick was 11 of 21 passing for 177 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions in the first half before the injuries. After the three defenders got hurt, Fitzpatrick was 10 of 13 passing for 133 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. The Steelers secondary isn't expected to break down like what happened in Cincinnati, and they should be able to contain Fitzpatrick. In three games prior to Week 11, Fitzpatrick combined for three touchdowns and three interceptions. Fitzpatrick is going to test Pittsburgh's secondary, but the Steelers are also going to test Buffalo's offensive line. Keep in mind that Pittsburgh is among the league leaders in sacks with 30 and has allowed only 11 touchdowns with 13 interceptions.
Get the latest news and analysis from the most informed Fantasy staff in the industry by following us on Twitter and Facebook.
Mike Tolbert (at IND): Tolbert was someone we liked a lot heading into Week 11, and he responded with an outstanding game against Denver with 25 carries for 111 yards and a touchdown and two catches for 42 yards. It was his fourth game with double digits in Fantasy points, and he should get another chance to start against the Colts with Ryan Mathews (ankle) still injured. Indianapolis has improved its run defense since Arian Foster's huge game in Week 1, but the Colts have still allowed six running backs to reach double digits in Fantasy points with 11 total touchdowns. Last week, BenJarvus Green-Ellis and Danny Woodhead each scored against the Colts, and Tolbert should be in line for another solid performance.
BenJarvus Green-Ellis (at DET): Green-Ellis and Woodhead are both in my Top 24 running backs this week because they should be able to duplicate last week's performance against the Lions. Detroit has allowed eight running backs to reach double digits in Fantasy points with 13 total touchdowns, and New England is looking explosive on offense thanks to a dominating offensive line. The Patriots should be able to push around the Lions, which should open holes for both running backs. Green-Ellis has double digits in Fantasy points in three of his past four games, and Woodhead has reached double digits in Fantasy points in five of eight games since coming to New England.
Brandon Jacobs (vs. JAC): There are three things working in Jacobs' favor this week. 1) Ahmad Bradshaw was demoted because of his fumbles, which means Jacobs is starting and will get the majority of carries. 2) With Hakeem Nicks (leg) and Steve Smith (pectoral) out, the Giants should focus more on their ground game. 3) Jacksonville is terrible against the run. The Jaguars have allowed eight running backs to reach double digits in Fantasy points with 12 total touchdowns. Jacobs hasn't scored a touchdown or reached double digits in Fantasy points in his past three games, but look for that to change in this matchup.
Thomas Jones (at SEA): There have only been two times this season where the Seahawks did not allow a running back to score a touchdown, which was Week 1 against San Francisco and Week 3 against San Diego. Otherwise they have allowed 11 touchdowns to opposing running backs with 10 reaching double digits in Fantasy points. The majority of that production has come in the past five games against Arizona twice, Oakland, the Giants and New Orleans, with Seattle allowing 135 carries for 650 yards and six touchdowns and 22 catches for 307 yards and a touchdown to running backs over that span. Jamaal Charles and Jones should be giddy about this matchup, and Jones is coming off a tremendous performance against Arizona with 19 Fantasy points. Look for him to play well against another NFC West opponent, and Fantasy owners should have confidence in Jones once again heading into Week 12.
Sleeper alert: Donald Brown (vs. SD): Brown should remain the starter in Week 12 against San Diego with Joseph Addai (neck) and Mike Hart (ankle) still injured. He had a solid game in Week 11 at New England with 108 total yards, and he will look to build on that performance against the Chargers. It won't be easy since San Diego is No. 3 in run defense, but six running backs have reached double digits in Fantasy points against the Chargers with eight touchdowns allowed. They have allowed a rushing touchdown in each of their past six games against Michael Bush, Steven Jackson, Green-Ellis, Chris Johnson, Foster and Knowshon Moreno. Granted, those are some of the premier running backs in the NFL, and Brown is not close to that level. But he is a dual threat out of the backfield, and the Colts will rely on him plenty with the injuries to Addai and Hart. Brown is worth using as at least a flex option this week. For more sleeper running backs, including Maurice Morris, click here.
Brandon Jackson (at ATL): Jackson had his worst game since Week 4 against Detroit in last week's matchup at Minnesota with 14 carries for 28 yards and four catches for 38 yards. He wasn't really needed much late in the game with the Packers up big on the Vikings, but he could struggle again this week. The Falcons are No. 6 in run defense, but they have not allowed a running back to score a rushing touchdown since Week 2. Since then, Atlanta has limited LeSean McCoy, Cedric Benson, LeGarrette Blount, Ray Rice and Steven Jackson to single digits in Fantasy points. The Packers should be able to attack the Falcons through the air, and Jackson could again be limited in his production.
Marshawn Lynch (vs. KC): We might see more of Justin Forsett in this game against the Chiefs after Lynch had two fumbles last week at New Orleans. He now has just one game with double digits in Fantasy points in his past five outings and is struggling to create much of a ground attack for the Seahawks with 3.1 yards per carry in six games since being traded from Buffalo. The Chiefs come into this matchup at No. 12 in run defense, but they haven't allowed a rushing touchdown since Week 6. It does help Lynch that he's at home, but he might not help your Fantasy team much if he's sitting on the bench in favor of Forsett.
Ronnie Brown (at OAK): It wouldn't be a surprise to see Brown play well here. After all, it's the Raiders, who have struggled at times in their run defense. But Brown has several factors working against him this week. Tyler Thigpen could be the starting quarterback again with Chad Henne (knee) injured, and Brandon Marshall (hamstring) could also miss the game. Along with that, the Dolphins have several injuries on their offensive line with center Cory Procter (knee) out and Jake Long (shoulder) at less than 100 percent. Brown also has failed to rush for 100 yards in his past 15 games and has just one game with double digits in Fantasy points since Week 1. And Oakland, despite being No. 25 against the run, has not allowed a 100-yard rusher in the past four games, including matchups against Moreno, Charles, Jones and Rashard Mendenhall.
Beanie Wells (vs. SF): The last time Wells faced the 49ers last year he finished with 15 carries for 79 yards and a touchdown and one catch for 24 yards with a lost fumble. We long for the days when Wells can do that again, and hopefully he can get back to that level. But right now he's struggling, and he had a rough game last week against Kansas City with eight carries for 39 yards. He has been dealing with a knee injury, and the Cardinals are using Tim Hightower more than Wells. Fantasy owners shouldn't plan to rely on Wells until he proves he's back at 100 percent and ready to get the majority of touches. Hopefully that will happen soon since the Cardinals have favorable matchups ahead against Denver in Week 14 and Carolina in Week 15, and Wells could be a factor for Fantasy owners come playoff time. But right now he's not worth starting in the majority of leagues.
Cedric Benson (at NYJ): We consider Benson more of a bust alert than a sit because he has the ability to run well even with a tough matchup against the Jets. Just go back to last year's playoff game when Benson had 21 carries for 169 yards and a touchdown and three catches for 12 yards against the Jets. He also reached double digits in Fantasy points against the Steelers in Week 9 and is coming off an excellent performance against Buffalo last week with 18 Fantasy points. The Jets have given up double digits in Fantasy points the past two games against Peyton Hillis and Foster, but they are still among the best run defenses in the league at No. 5. And Benson has struggled on the road this year with 49 carries for 154 yards in his past three games at Cleveland, Atlanta and Indianapolis. It's just not a good week to count on Benson since he hasn't had good back-to-back games this season.
Bust alert: Fred Jackson (vs. PIT): Jackson was the No. 1 running back in standard leagues in Week 11 as out Start of the Week and more than lived up to the top billing. He finished with 24 Fantasy points against Cincinnati and now has 50 Fantasy points in his past two games. But this week, Jackson might be in trouble against the Steelers, who are No. 1 in run defense. Pittsburgh shut down a good Oakland rushing attack last week and held Darren McFadden to 10 carries for 14 yards and two catches for 16 yards. Even with the tough matchup it's hard to bench Jackson in the majority of leagues based on how much he should touch the ball for the Bills. But the Steelers have only allowed two running backs to reach double digits in Fantasy points this year with three touchdowns, and Jackson could be in line for a long day. We would only consider using him as a flex option at best in the majority of leagues.
Vincent Jackson (at IND): You've been waiting for this week when Jackson would return to the field following his holdout and suspension, and he has the chance to play well for the Chargers this week. Antonio Gates (foot) and Malcom Floyd (hamstring) are dealing with injuries, and Patrick Crayton (wrist) is out. That means the Chargers might have a significant need for Jackson to make plays right away. We've also seen that no matter who Philip Rivers has on the field (Legedu Naanee, Seyi Ajirotutu and Randy McMichael for example) he will find a way to make them productive. Jackson has been a tremendous Fantasy option the past two seasons, and he has the chance to finish the season strong, starting with this matchup against the Colts.
Mario Manningham (vs. JAC): No Nicks or Smith means that Manningham is now the No. 1 wide receiver for the Giants. The expectations are higher, which should mean more targets but also more coverage. Good thing for him he's facing the Jaguars this week, who have allowed 14 touchdowns to opposing wide receivers. Derek Hagan should also be considered a sleeper in this matchup, and I'm not worried about a letdown for the Giants passing game this week based on Jacksonville's defense. Eli Manning should still be OK as a starting Fantasy option, and he will target Manningham and Hagan quite a bit in this matchup at home.
Nate Washington (at HOU): It's not an ideal situation for Washington with Rusty Smith as the new starting quarterback for the Titans, but the two had a big play last week against the Redskins and could connect well this week. Washington caught a 52-yard pass from Smith in Week 11, and he now has either 100 receiving yards or a touchdown in his past three games. If this was a different opponent we wouldn't consider using Washington, but the Texans are last in the NFL in pass defense and lead the league with 25 touchdowns allowed. Washington had a touchdown against Houston last year in two meetings, and the Texans have allowed 10 wide receivers to reach double digits in Fantasy points. Even Randy Moss has a chance to score this week (OK, maybe not), but Washington is the only wide receiver in Tennessee worth using in this matchup.
Nate Burleson (vs. NE): Burleson has two of his best games this year in his past three outings with 17 Fantasy points in Week 9 against the Jets and 16 Fantasy points last week at Dallas. He is playing at a high level and has a favorable matchup this week against New England. The Patriots have allowed 12 touchdowns to opposing wide receivers, with 11 reaching double digits in Fantasy points. The Lions will likely be throwing a lot in this game, which should mean good things for all their receiving options, including Burleson, who has stepped up his play recently. He should have another quality stat line this week.
Sidney Rice (at WAS): Rice shook off the rust from his hip injury last week with three catches for 56 yards against Green Bay, but that's not the important stat line from that game. He had 10 targets from Favre, which showed he will remain a featured part of this passing attack. And he has a favorable matchup this week against the Redskins, who are No. 29 in pass defense and have struggled with opposing wide receivers. Washington has allowed 13 touchdowns to opposing wide receivers, with 12 reaching double digits in Fantasy points. Percy Harvin is also worth using this week, but Rice should be able to contribute for many Fantasy owners as well. As we've said, look for the Vikings to be motivated in their first game playing for Frazier.
Sleeper alert: Blair White (vs. SD): Austin Collie (concussion) is not going to play this week, which means White should see an increase in targets as the slot receiver for the Colts. We saw White play at a high level last week at New England with five catches for 42 yards and two touchdowns on seven targets when Collie got injured. It's not an ideal matchup for the Colts since San Diego is No. 1 in pass defense, but the Chargers aren't going to shut down Peyton Manning and his targets at home. Plan on using White as a solid No. 3 Fantasy wide receiver or flex option, and he might even have a better outlook than Pierre Garcon, who has struggled this season. In fact, Garcon has two fewer touchdowns than White heading into Week 12. For more sleeper wide receivers, including Brandon Gibson and Ben Obomanu, click here.
Hines Ward (at BUF): Ward falls into the same category as Garcon and Moss as wide receivers who should be playing better but have struggled. Ward only has nine catches in each of his past three full games (he left Week 10 against New England with a concussion) with 53 yards and one touchdown over that span. It's a favorable matchup for him this week against the Bills, but his recent play makes him too hard to trust. Mike Wallace is the key to the Steelers passing game right now with Emmanuel Sanders picking up the slack as the secondary option. Ward's production the past three games makes him a risky option at best in the majority of leagues.
Donald Driver (at ATL): Speaking of risky options, Driver hasn't scored a touchdown since Week 4 and only has one game with double digits in Fantasy points this season. He is looking like the bust we predicted this offseason, and James Jones has emerged as the No. 2 option in the passing game for the Packers behind Greg Jennings. Jones is worth starting as a No. 3 Fantasy wide receiver, but Driver should be reserved in the majority of leagues. He is still dealing with the thigh injury, and last week he was held to four catches for 31 yards at Minnesota. Maybe Driver breaks out of his recent funk in this game against the Falcons, but he's not worth trusting based on his recent play.
Davone Bess (at OAK): Bess appears done as a quality Fantasy option based on his play the past four games, even in leagues where receptions count. He has a combined 10 Fantasy points in standard leagues over that span against Cincinnati, Baltimore, Tennessee and Chicago. Last week was his worst game of the season against the Bears with one catch for 9 yards, and that was Thigpen's first start in place of Henne. Thigpen is expected to start again, and don't be surprised if Bess is limited in his production for another outing. And with Marshall not expected to play, Bess will see increased coverage, which won't help his outlook.
Lee Evans (vs. PIT): Steve Johnson is enjoying his role as the Joker, but Evans is serious about his production slipping the past four games. Since catching six passes for 105 yards and three touchdowns at Baltimore in Week 7, Evans has combined for 12 catches for 211 yards and no touchdowns against Kansas City, Chicago, Detroit and Cincinnati. Even though Fitzpatrick was tearing up the Bengals last week, Evans was limited to two catches for 72 yards while Johnson had three touchdowns. Also, in his past two games against the Steelers, Evans has combined for four catches for 80 yards and no touchdowns.
Johnny Knox (vs. PHI): Knox has become the best wide receiver for the Bears this year, but he only has two games this season with double digits in Fantasy points and just one touchdown. In his past three games, Knox has combined for 13 catches for 189 yards against Buffalo, Minnesota and Miami. He is worth using as a No. 3 wide receiver in leagues where receptions count, but you can bench him in standard formats. He only had two catches for 16 yards on five targets last year against the Eagles, who have done a great job against opposing wide receivers this season. Philadelphia has allowed eight touchdowns to opposing wide receivers but only four have reached double digits in Fantasy points – with none since Week 7.
Bust alert: Terrell Owens (at NYJ): Owens has been one of the best Fantasy receivers this season. Since Week 3, Owens has eight touchdowns and six games with double digits in Fantasy points, including three games with at least 18 points. But this week he gets to face Darrelle Revis, which is bad news. Last year when Owens was with Buffalo, Revis shut him down with only six catches for 44 yards and no touchdowns. Revis has done a great job recently against Calvin Johnson (one catch for 13 yards) and Andre Johnson (four catches for 32 yards), and he should be able to contain Owens. We would also suggest using caution when setting your lineup with Chad Ochocinco, who could also struggle in his matchup with Antonio Cromartie.
Kevin Boss (vs. JAC): The Giants need Boss to step up just like Manningham and Hagan now that Nicks is out along with Smith. Boss struggled last week at the Eagles with two catches for 22 yards, but all the Giants looked bad in that game. He has two touchdowns in his past three games and has a favorable matchup this week against the Jaguars, who are No. 28 in pass defense. They have allowed five touchdowns to opposing tight ends and four have reached double digits in Fantasy points. With the increase in targets, Boss is worth using as a starting option.
Joel Dreessen (vs. TEN): Dreessen was a disappointment the last time we had him listed here in Week 10 at Jacksonville, and he finished with two catches for 24 yards and a fumble. Then last week, we said to sit Dreessen at the Jets, and he had a career game with four catches for 106 yards and a touchdown. We expect to see that Dreessen again with a favorable matchup against the Titans. Tennessee has struggled with tight ends the past three weeks with Antonio Gates, Anthony Fasano and Chris Cooley each gaining more than 90 yards, and Gates and Fasano scored touchdowns. Daniels is not expected to play in Week 12, so look for Schaub to rely on Dreessen once again.
Brandon Pettigrew (vs. NE): In a down year for tight ends thanks to several injuries to prominent players, Pettigrew has been among the best players at the position. In standard leagues he is the No. 9 tight end for the season, and he has been consistent with at least six Fantasy points in seven games, including last week at Dallas when he had eight catches for 75 yards. The Patriots are among the worst teams at defending tight ends with five scoring touchdowns and four reaching at least eight Fantasy points. It will be hard for New England's secondary to stop all the weapons in Detroit's passing attack, and Pettigrew should again see a healthy amount of targets.
Sleeper alert: Heath Miller (at BUF): We'll go with the matchup here even though Miller has struggled for the most part this season. He only has one touchdown and one game with more than 50 receiving yards, but the Bills have been a good cure for tight end woes. Buffalo has allowed eight touchdowns to opposing tight ends and six have reached at least eight Fantasy points. With the tight end position a burden for many Fantasy owners, Miller could end being worth the risk as a starting option. Some other sleepers to consider this week include Benjamin Watson (vs. CAR), Bo Scaife (at HOU) and Jimmy Graham (at DAL). All have favorable matchups and could be useful starters for Fantasy owners in deeper leagues.
Kellen Winslow (at BAL): Winslow scored his first touchdown of the season in Week 10 against Carolina, but he went back to his sub-par performance last week at San Francisco with just three Fantasy points. He now has seven games with four Fantasy points or less, and this should be a tough matchup for him this week against the Ravens. Watson is the only tight end to score against the Ravens this season, and they have shut down Dustin Keller, Jermaine Gresham, Miller and Tony Gonzalez. Winslow knows this Baltimore defense well from his days with Cleveland, and he had positive results against the Ravens in his past six meetings with at least six Fantasy points in five of those games. But he did not score in any of those matchups, and we'd be surprised if he found the end zone this week based on his overall body of work in 2010.
Jermaine Gresham (at NYJ): Gresham was a tremendous disappointment last week when he had two catches for 33 yards on just three targets against Buffalo, which is among the worst teams at defending tight ends. The Jets haven't been far behind the Bills, especially lately with Pettigrew, Watson and Dreessen all reaching at least seven Fantasy points in the past three games against New York. But Gresham only has one game with double digits in Fantasy points this year and one touchdown since Week 6. Maybe he peaked in that game at Indianapolis in Week 10 when he had nine catches for 85 yards and a touchdown, but it's doubtful that player shows up again even in what could be a favorable matchup.
Zach Miller (vs. MIA): Miller is still dealing with a nagging foot injury that kept him out of Week 9 against Kansas City and has limited him to three catches for 17 yards is his previous two games. He should be able to play against the Dolphins, but it's a difficult matchup for him. The Dolphins are among the best teams against opposing tight ends with Keller the only one to score and reach double digits in Fantasy points. Since then they have shut down Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski, Heath Miller, Gresham, Heap and Greg Olsen. Zach Miller will continue to see his share of targets as long as he's on the field, but with the injury and matchup you might consider benching him.
Bust alert: Marcedes Lewis (at NYG): You probably can't afford to sit Lewis in the majority of leagues with all the problems we've seen at tight end this year. After all, he's No. 2 in standard leagues behind Gates in Fantasy points at his position. But Lewis has a difficult matchup this week with the Giants, who are among the best teams at defending tight ends. Jason Witten, Dallas Clark and Pettigrew are the only tight ends to gain more than 50 receiving yards against the Giants, and Witten and Clark are the only two who managed to score touchdowns. In the second meeting against Witten, the Giants held him to one catch for 7 yards. Lewis could see an increase in targets with Sims-Walker out, but he will also see plenty of extra attention. And keep in mind as good as Lewis has been this season he does have four games this year with five Fantasy points or less. As a side note, Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell, who was with Buffalo last year, only allowed three tight ends to score touchdowns against the Bills and none after Week 2. Lewis did face Fewell's Bills last year and had three catches for 70 yards.
Giants (vs. JAC): Most Fantasy owners were probably hesitant to use the Giants DST in Week 11 since they were facing the Eagles in Philadelphia, which was a tough matchup. The Giants got three sacks and recovered two fumbles, but they finished with only nine Fantasy points. This week, the Giants should rebound against the Jaguars since Garrard and Maurice Jones-Drew combined for five turnovers against Cleveland in Week 11, and this is a tougher matchup than the Browns. The Giants DST has five games with double digits in Fantasy points this season, including three at home, and they should be highly motivated coming off a two-game losing streak.
Other DSTs with good matchups: Vikings (at WAS), Browns (vs. CAR) and Raiders (vs. MIA)
Falcons (vs. GB): The Falcons DST had a tremendous stretch earlier this season with four games in a row with double digits in Fantasy points from Week 2-5, but they took advantage of some easy matchups, including opponents like Arizona, San Francisco and Cleveland. Since then, Atlanta has a combined 31 Fantasy points against Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Tampa Bay, Baltimore and St. Louis. The Packers offense put up 31 points at Minnesota in Week 11 and is playing at a high level. And standout pass rusher John Abraham (groin) missed the game against the Rams, which won't help things if he's out against Green Bay since the Falcons had no sacks last week.
Neil Rackers (vs. TEN): Rackers was better than expected last week at the Jets with two field goals and three extra points. He still only has one game with double digits in Fantasy points since Week 2, but he has a favorable matchup this week against the Titans. Tennessee just allowed Washington's Graham Gano to make four field goals on six attempts, including the game-winner in overtime in Week 11, and the Titans lead the NFL with 27 made field goals allowed. Rackers has not missed a field goal at home this season, going 8 of 8, including one of his best games of the season in Week 9 against San Diego with 11 Fantasy points. Five kickers have made at least three field goals in a game this year against Tennessee, and Rackers will hope to make it six.
Graham Gano (vs. MIN): Gano was amazing last week with his game-winning field goal in overtime at Tennessee with 13 Fantasy points. It was his best game of the season and highest point total of his young, two-year career. But as we pointed out with Rackers, it came against a team that allows a lot of production to kickers. The Vikings are on the opposite end of the kicking spectrum. Minnesota has only allowed 10 field goals on the season, and last week the Vikings held Mason Crosby to one field goal and four extra points. Gano has just three games this season with double digits in Fantasy points, and he is only 8 of 12 on field goals in five home games this year.
Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us via Twitter . You can also follow Jamey at @jameyeisenberg . Do you have a question or a comment for our Fantasy staff? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org .