2020 Fantasy Football Starts, Sits, Sleepers: Week 12

2020 Fantasy Football Starts, Sits, Sleepers: Week 12

by November 28, 2020 0 comments

The best part about fantasy football is winning. The second best part is the draft. However, the draft has come and gone, and fantasy owners struggle with who to start, who to sit, and who to target as a sleeper each week. Thankfully, four of our writers (Mike Fanelli, Joshua Abbe, Mason Thompson, and MJ Hurley) offer up their takes on who fantasy owners should start, sit, and play as a sleeper this week. Be sure to follow all of them on Twitter and reach out with any fantasy football questions you may have. Without further ado, let’s get started.

Quarterbacks

Starts

Matt Ryan vs Las Vegas Raiders

Ryan is coming off an ugly performance last week against the Saints, throwing for a season-low 232 yards while completing only 51.4 percent of his passes. Ryan failed to score a touchdown and scored only 5.3 fantasy points. However, he should bounce back this week against the Raiders as they are giving up almost 20 fantasy points per game to quarterbacks this season. Furthermore, they have given up 21.5 or more fantasy points in five of their last seven games. Ryan should bounce back against a struggling Raiders secondary. – Mike

Justin Herbert at Buffalo Bills

The rookie has played great this year, and with the unfortunate injury to Joe Burrow, Herbert will likely be the offensive rookie of the year winner. Herbert has thrown at least two touchdowns in seven straight games, averaging 26 fantasy points per game in that span. Meanwhile, the Bills are giving up an average of 24.1 fantasy points per game to quarterbacks not named Sam Darnold this season. This game will be a shootout, and Herbert has the chance to throw four touchdowns tomorrow. – Joshua

Teddy Bridgewater at Minnesota Vikings

Bridgewater is back as a starting option this week after missing last week’s game due to an injury. Once again, he has a great chance at providing a great stat-line against a young Minnesota secondary. Along with that, the trio of D.J. Moore, Robby Anderson, and Curtis Samuel is starting to heat up. Carolina could pull off the upset in a high-scoring game against the Vikings. Bridgewater is a back-end QB1 this week. – Mason

Ryan Tannehill at Indianapolis Colts

The Colts were exposed last week by Rodgers and the Packers. Even though the Colts forced four turnovers, they still allowed 31 points and were only saved by the heroics of rookie Julian Blackmon. Although the majority of the Titans’ yards come from shorter passes and rushes from Derrick Henry and the rushing attack, Tannehill is tied for seventh in the NFL in touchdown passes. When the Titans reach the red zone, Tannehill becomes extremely efficient with his arm and his legs, something that will threaten the Colts defense this week. – MJ

Sits

Tom Brady vs Kansas City Chiefs

Last week I told you to bench Brady, and hopefully, you listed as he scored only 12.6 fantasy points against the Rams. This week, you would be wise to bench him again. Brady has struggled the last three weeks, scoring less than 13 fantasy points twice while averaging 15.6 fantasy points per game. Meanwhile, the Chiefs are holding quarterbacks to about 17 fantasy points per game this season. Furthermore, they have held quarterbacks to one or fewer passing touchdowns in 60 percent of their games. With no teams on a bye this week, you should have no trouble finding a replacement for Brady. – Mike

Aaron Rodgers vs Chicago Bears

You may not be able to bench Rodgers this week, and that’s fine but temper your expectations. Rodgers’ fantasy points have dropped in three straight games as he scored only 21.7 fantasy points last week. The Bears are giving up only 15.3 fantasy points per game this season and have held quarterbacks to under 18 fantasy points in all but one game. Don’t expect Rodgers to finish inside the top 10 this week. – Joshua

Taysom Hill at Denver Broncos

Unfortunately, Hill can’t play in your tight end slot anymore. Now, to play him, you have to slot him in as your quarterback. While it may be tempting to start him after his showing last week, don’t take the bait. Most of Hill’s points were off of his rushing scores, and it was against a porous Atlanta defense. Denver’s defense is far better and caused the Dolphins to bench Tua Tagovailoa last week. The Saints should look to get Alvin Kamara more involved again this week instead of relying on the swiss army knife. – Mason

Cam Newton vs Arizona Cardinals

There is an inherent draw to Newton as a fantasy quarterback because of his running ability. Even with that going for him, Newton has mostly written himself out of the fantasy scene this season. Do not be deceived by the 365 yards passing against the Texans last week. With only four touchdown passes in 2020, Newton will continue to drop below his 19th overall ranking for quarterbacks in ESPN leagues. A matchup against the speedy Cardinals defense only further drops his value by somewhat neutralizing his running game, and because of that, he should be on the bench this week. – MJ

Sleepers

Daniel Jones at Cincinnati Bengals

Coming off his bye week, Jones has picked up his play over his past four games. During that span, Jones is averaging 18 fantasy points per game, compared to 10.9 in the first six games of the season. This week Jones faces a Bengals team that is giving up 19 fantasy points per game to quarterbacks. Furthermore, before last week’s game against Washington, the Bengals have given up 20.5 or more fantasy points to quarterbacks in five of their past seven games. Jones is in line for his second straight game with 20 or more fantasy points. – Mike

Tua Tagovailoa at New York Jets

Last week the rookie got benched in Denver, and we’ve heard it was performance based, but Tua is dealing with a thumb injury on his throwing hand. He is questionable for tomorrow but should play. If he doesn’t, Ryan Fitzpatrick will get the start for the Dolphins, and he should for your fantasy team as well. Meanwhile, the Jets are giving up almost 22 fantasy points per game to quarterbacks. Furthermore, over their last three games, they have given up an average of 29.9 fantasy points and almost three passing touchdowns per game. Whether it’s Tua or Fitzpatrick, they have a great matchup and could finish the week as a low-end QB1. – Joshua

Derek Carr at Atlanta Falcons

Carr is the QB17 on the year and has been very efficient for Las Vegas. After a strong showing against Kansas City last week, he will look to continue his success this week against the Falcons. Thankfully for Carr, Atlanta is allowing the most fantasy points to the quarterback position this year. This game should be high scoring, and both quarterbacks are starting-caliber options this week. – Mason

Kirk Cousins vs Carolina Panthers

Yes, Cousins will be without Adam Thielen this week, but that does not mean he should be on the bench. Cousins has improved in November, only throwing one interception compared to his nine touchdowns. With the emergence of rookie receiver Justin Jefferson, Cousins has the firepower available to him even with Stefon Diggs in Buffalo and Thielen sidelined this week. With a struggling Panthers defense on the field against Cousins, look for him to continue his November dominance this week. – MJ

Running Backs

Starts

David Montgomery at Green Bay Packers

The last time we saw Montgomery on the field was in Week 9 against the Titans. He missed the Week 10 matchup against the Vikings because of a concussion but has cleared the protocol and will play Sunday night. He’s back just in time as the Packers give up the second-most fantasy points per game to running backs, giving up 31.3 per game. Furthermore, they have given up either 100 rushing yards or a rushing touchdown in all but one game this season. Montgomery’s matchup this week makes him an RB2 with upside. – Mike

Myles Gaskin at New York Jets

The star of the last few weeks, Salvon Ahmed, has been ruled out for tomorrow’s game with a shoulder injury. However, it is unclear if the Dolphins will have Gaskin or not. The team needs to active him from injured reserve before 4 P.M. est today to play tomorrow. If the team actives him, he should be in your fantasy lineup as the Jets are giving up an average of 26.4 fantasy points per game. In the Week 6 matchup between these two teams, Gaskin scored 16.6 fantasy points. If Gaskin doesn’t play, Matt Breida steps into RB2 status thanks to the matchup and available workload. – Joshua

Nyheim Hines vs Tennessee Titans

Hines didn’t produce as many thought he would last week as he only gathered nine touches. This week, he goes against a Tennessee defense that he slaughtered for over 26 points just two weeks ago. Hines matches up well against the Titans defense, and the Colts would be wise to use their running back room to their advantage. Doing so would mean Hines gets more touches than he did last week. – Mason

Damien Harris vs Arizona Cardinals

Ranked the 38th running back in ESPN leagues, Harris provides incredible value with the injury to Rex Burkhead. Now that Harris will essentially be getting RB1 carries, his value increases even more. After surpassing 500 rushing yards on the season last week, look for Harris to have a good week against the Cardinals and at least be a flex start in most leagues. – MJ

Sits

All San Francisco 49ers Running Backs at Los Angeles Rams

Whether it is Raheem Mostert or Jerick McKinnon or whoever else getting the start for the 49ers this week, they belong on your bench. It is unclear which back will receiver what percent of the workload. Meanwhile, the Rams are giving up the third-fewest fantasy points per game to running backs, giving up only 19.8 per game. Furthermore, they have held running backs to 60 or fewer rushing yards and under 22 fantasy points in four straight games. In their Week 6 matchup, the entire 49er backfield combined for 19.9 fantasy points. Fade all of the 49er running backs this week. – Mike

Darrell Henderson vs San Francisco 49ers

At this point, the Rams’ backfield is something fantasy owners should avoid. The rookie Cam Akers led the backfield in scoring last week with 8.9 fantasy points as he scored his first career touchdown. Henderson, meanwhile, only scored 2.9 fantasy points, making it the fifth game in a row scoring under 10.5 fantasy points. The 49ers are holding running backs to an average of just under 21 fantasy points per game. Between the tough matchup and cluttered backfield, Henderson needs to be on your bench. – Joshua

Kenyan Drake at New England Patriots

The Cardinals’ game plan against the awful Seattle secondary was that of a middle-school team. Drake benefitted from having a touchdown but wasn’t good other than that, averaging less than three yards a carry. Now, he goes against a New England defense that should be able to keep him in check. Chase Edmonds will also continue to eat into Drake’s workload. Edmonds should get more touches than he did last week if Arizona wants to win against the Patriots. – Mason

Devin Singletary vs Los Angeles Chargers

Although Singletary is averaging four yards per carry in 2020, he has slowly been losing touches to Zack Moss. With Moss producing 176 of his 200 yards rushing in the Bills last five games, there is a clear move in Buffalo to a running back by committee system. Best case scenario, Singletary will receive more goal line touches, but with Josh Allen under center, most of those touches go-to receivers. – MJ

Sleepers

Frank Gore vs Miami Dolphins

With Le’Veon Bell in Kansas City and La’Mical Perine on injured reserve, Gore is in line for a featured role this week against his former team. Last week against the Chargers, Gore had 15 carries for 61 yards and scored a season-high 15.1 fantasy points. His second-best fantasy performance of the season came in Week 6 against the Dolphins with 11 fantasy points. Meanwhile, the Dolphins are giving up an average of 25.1 fantasy points per game to running backs and gave up 166 rushing yards and two touchdowns to the Broncos’ running backs last week. While it isn’t a sexy move to start Gore, his matchup and situation offer a safe floor appeal as an RB2. – Mike

Brian Hill vs Las Vegas Raiders

Yesterday, the Falcons ruled out Todd Gurley for this game with a knee injury, and Hill should get the start. Hill hasn’t done much in the backup role this season, averaging 5.7 fantasy points per game. However, he faces the Raiders, who give up the fourth-most fantasy points to running backs. They have given up 26 or more fantasy points to the position in 60 percent of their games this year. Hill is an excellent streaming option for Week 12. – Joshua

Boston Scott vs Seattle Seahawks

Unfortunately for Miles Sanders‘ owners, Scott is still receiving plenty of touches and was the running back to score for Philadelphia last week. While many think Sanders is the lead-back, it is more of a committee approach, as mentioned when the team signed Jordan Howard this week. If Scott scores a touchdown, the Philadelphia coaching staff could decide to use Scott more as the game goes on. – Mason

Phillip Lindsay vs New Orleans Saints

The Saints defense has dominated opposing quarterbacks this season. With Drew Lock struggling, Sean Payton and New Orleans are looking forward to this matchup. For the Broncos to stay competitive this week, Lindsay will be a key part of their offense. Melvin Gordon will still get the majority of goal line touches, but when he is healthy, Lindsay averages 10 touches a game and 5.4 yards per touch. With a passing attack that is struggling, look for Lindsay to continue his consistency on Sunday. – MJ

Wide Receivers

Starts

Curtis Samuel at Minnesota Vikings

After averaging 8.7 fantasy points per game over the first five games of the season, Samuel has averaged 18.2 per game over his past five games, scoring 17 or more in four of them. He has turned into a consistent weapon but in the pass and run game this season. Meanwhile, the Vikings are giving up 43 fantasy points per game to wide receivers, the fourth-most in the league. They have given up 17 receiving touchdowns to wide receivers this season. Furthermore, they have given up at least 38 fantasy points to wide receivers in six of their past seven games. Start Samuel with confidence. – Mike

Justin Jefferson vs Carolina Panthers

It appears that Thielen will miss this game because of Covid-19, opening the door for Jefferson to take over as the Vikings’ number one weapon in the passing game. He is coming off back-to-back games with 17.5 or more fantasy points and has a good matchup against the Panthers. Over their past five games, the Panthers have given up 35 or more fantasy points to wide receivers in four of them. With the expected uptick in targets and his big-play ability, Jefferson is a must start WR2 against the Panthers. – Joshua

Marquez Valdes-Scantling vs Chicago Bears

Let’s get this out of the way now. Valdes-Scantling was the reason the Packers were even in the game against the Colts last week. He received death threats over his fumble last week and could very well come out and light up your fantasy scoreboards this week in a get-right game against the Bears. Rodgers knows that he has to keep Valdes-Scantling’s confidence up, and getting him the ball will do just that. – Mason

DeVante Parker at New York Jets

Parker has averaged six targets a week in the last five games and has an extremely favorable matchup against the Jets this Sunday. Although the situation at quarterback has been an issue for Dolphins receivers this year, Parker has remained very consistent. With the Jets reeling and completely unable to produce on defense, the number one receiver on whoever they play is a must-start. – MJ

Sits

All San Francisco 49ers Wide Receivers at Los Angeles Rams

Yes, I’m picking on the 49ers again. Whether it’s Brandon Aiyuk, Deebo Samuel, or anyone else, leave them on your bench. First off, some of them are coming off injuries and could be on a snap count. Secondly, Nick Mullens will start at quarterback, and he has thrown one or fewer touchdowns in all but one game this season. Third, the Rams have held wide receivers to an average of 29.4 fantasy points per game. Fourth, they held the 49ers’ wide receivers to 35.4 fantasy points back in their Week 6 matchup with Jimmy Garoppolo under center. Avoid every San Francisco wide receiver this week. – Mike

Jerry Jeudy vs New Orleans Saints

Jeudy is dealing with an ankle/Achilles injury and is questionable to play tomorrow. However, even if he does, he should be on your bench. He has scored under 11.5 fantasy points in five of his last six games, while KJ Hamler and Tim Patrick both outscored Jeudy against the Dolphins last week. Meanwhile, the Saints have done a better job slowing down wide receivers, holding them to under 30 fantasy points in two of their past three games. – Joshua

Christian Kirk at New England Patriots

Over the last four games, Kirk has averaged seven targets a game. While that stream may continue this week, New England isn’t going to allow Kirk to get much yardage. This game could also be low scoring, and the Arizona offense will look bad if the game plan is similar to that of last week’s. – Mason

Jamison Crowder vs Miami Dolphins

Every week, Crowder provides hypothetical value due to his standing as one of the Jets’ best receivers. However, with the emergence of Denzel Mims and the back and forth between Joe Flacco and Darnold, Crowder has lost his value. With only five targets a game and a touchdown less than every other game, Crowder no longer warrants more than flex consideration on most teams. – MJ

Sleepers

Nelson Agholor at Atlanta Falcons

Since Week 3, Agholor has turned into a consistent fantasy producer. Over his last seven games, Agholor has scored 13.5 or more in five of them. Not only has he been consistent, but he’s turned into the Raiders’ top wide receiver, playing at least 75 percent of the snaps in all but one game since Week 2. Meanwhile, the Falcons can’t stop a nose bleed, let alone speedy wide receivers. They are giving up an average of almost 44 fantasy points per game to wide receivers this season. They have given up at least 33.5 fantasy points to the position in all but one game. Expect Agholor to have a big performance and finish the week as a top 20 wide receiver. – Mike

Keelan Cole vs Cleveland Browns

Both DJ Chark and Chris Conley will miss tomorrow’s game against the Browns, leaving Cole and the rookie Laviska Shenault to start at wide receiver. Cole has been sneaky good this season, averaging 11.2 fantasy points per game, scoring double-digits in half of the games. He faces a Browns’ secondary that is giving up an average of just under 40 fantasy points per game to wide receivers. The Jaguars will likely end up chasing points, and Cole could be in line for a 12 or more target game. – Joshua

Rashard Higgins at Jacksonville Jaguars

This week could finally be where Higgins breaks out after Odell Beckham‘s injury. With the Jaguars focused on Jarvis Landry, Higgins will have a much easier defender on him. Jacksonville is allowing the third-most points to the receiver position, and the Cleveland offense should make easy work out of a team that is looking to tank the rest of the season. – Mason

David Moore at Philadelphia Eagles

When the Seahawks face a team with a true number one corner, their receivers struggle. With Darius Slay lining up against either D.K. Metcalf or Tyler Lockett this week, that leaves room for Moore to produce. The more points the Seahawks score, the better Moore does for fantasy production. With amazing weeks against the Bills and 49ers, Moore has a similar matchup to produce 10 plus points this week. – MJ

Tight Ends

Starts

Hunter Henry at Buffalo Bills

After a three-week slump coming out of the bye week, Henry has put together back-to-back good performances, scoring at least 13 fantasy points in each game. He is the TE7 on the year, averaging 10.3 fantasy points per game. Henry has scored 10 or more fantasy points in 60 percent of his games this season. Meanwhile, the Bills are giving up the third-most fantasy points per game to tight ends, giving up 15.5 per game. Furthermore, they have given up 22.5 or more fantasy points to tight ends in 40 percent of their games this year. Expect Henry to have his third straight game with over 13 fantasy points and a touchdown tomorrow. – Mike

Robert Tonyan vs Chicago Bears

Last week, Tonyan had a big game against the Colts, catching all five of his targets for 44 yards and a touchdown. His 15.4 fantasy points last week was his second-best performance of the season. The Bears, meanwhile, have given up 11 or more fantasy points in all but two games this season. They have also given up at least one touchdown to tight ends in 60 percent of their games this season, so expect Tonyan to find the end zone tomorrow. – Joshua

Austin Hooper at Jacksonville Jaguars

Let’s try this for the third time. Ever since Hooper has returned from injury, he has been listed as a start, and it hasn’t worked out. It has to work sometime, right? Jacksonville is allowing the fourth-most points to the tight end spot this year, and Hooper’s target share improved in Week 11 with five. In a deserted tight end landscape, see if Hooper is still available on the waiver wire and insert him into your lineups. – Mason

Jordan Reed at Los Angeles Rams

Even without George Kittle playing, San Francisco still loves throwing to their tight ends. Last week against a team in the Saints who shut down the week 49ers receiving core, Reed saw even more targets than normal. With Jalen Ramsey and the Rams leading one of the best defenses in the NFL, Reed will see a similar matchup this week. Look for five-plus targets and a few goal line targets if the game plan goes well. – MJ

Sits

Dallas Goedert vs Seattle Seahawks

While Goedert had a great performance last week against the Browns, scoring 18.7 fantasy points, things this week don’t look optimistic. One, Zach Ertz is expected to play Monday night after not playing since Week 6. Two, the matchup isn’t fantasy-friendly as the Seahawks are allowing only 9.5 fantasy points per game to tight ends this season. Furthermore, they have held tight ends under nine fantasy points in 60 percent of their games. With the return of Ertz and the matchup, Goedert is a risky TE2 this week. – Mike

Jonnu Smith at Indianapolis Colts

After struggling for weeks, Smith scored 12 fantasy points last week against the Ravens. However, he had scored under 10 fantasy points in four of his previous five games. In the Week 10 matchup against the Colts, Smith had only two catches for 14 yards. If not for a goal line rushing touchdown, Smith would have scored only 3.4 fantasy points. Meanwhile, the Colts have held tight ends to only one receiving touchdown this season. Expect a quiet game from Smith against the Colts. – Joshua

Noah Fant vs New Orleans Saints

The Saints held Hayden Hurst to zero fantasy points last week. That says enough right there. While that likely won’t happen again, Fant isn’t as good of an option this week as it may seem. The New Orleans defense has been much better as of late, and Fant could struggle this week as a result. – Mason

Rob Gronkowski vs Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs defense is big, fast, and talented. Unfortunately, Gronkowski is no longer as fast and cannot beat the quick linebackers in the middle seam like he used to be able to. With 400 yards and four touchdowns, Gronkowski has fit well into the Tampa Bay offense, but he is no longer the must-start tight end that he was in New England. Play the matchups this week, but do not give up complete hope on Gronkowski just yet. As long as Brady is his quarterback, Gronk will get his fair share of targets. – MJ

Sleepers

Will Dissly at Philadelphia Eagles

Unfortunately, Greg Olsen suffered a foot injury that landed him on injured reserve. With him out for at least the next three weeks, Dissly steps into the starting tight end role. Over his first two years in the league, Dissly has struggled with injuries. However, when he was on the field, he averaged 11 fantasy points per game. Meanwhile, the Eagles have struggled to slow down tight ends this season, giving up an average of 14.4 fantasy points per game. Furthermore, they have allowed six touchdowns to tight ends this season, and it shouldn’t surprise anyone if Dissly finishes the week as a top 12 tight end. – Mike

Tyler Eifert vs Cleveland Browns

With several weapons out for the Jaguars, Eifert will see an uptick in targets this week. He has scored more than nine fantasy points only once this season and has zero games with over 50 receiving yards. However, expect both to change tomorrow as the Browns give up an average of 15.8 fantasy points per game to tight ends. They have given up an average of 83 receiving yards and 1.5 touchdowns per game to tight ends since their bye week. Eifert is in an excellent position to have a big game. – Joshua

Dan Arnold at New England Patriots

Arnold scored a touchdown last week and has scored over five points in two-straight games. Yes, that’s how bad the tight end position is that this is being classified as a sleeper. With Larry Fitzgerald out due to Covid-19, someone will have to step up, so why not Arnold? – Mason

Jimmy Graham at Green Bay Packers

Even though Graham did very little during his time in Green Bay, he has done well for Chicago. Three of his five touchdowns this season were thrown by Mitchell Trubisky. Green Bay has struggled against tight ends all season, something that likely will not change this week against the Bears. – MJ

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