Week 10: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em

Start ‘Em

Freeman and Bucs looking Elite

Quarterback

  • Josh Freeman (vs SD) – Freeman has thrown for 1257 yards and 11 touchdowns while only throwing one pick in the last four weeks. Ride him while he, Doug Martin (who isn’t included in this list because he’s a guaranteed start) and the rest of the Tampa offense is hot, as the Chargers show no signs of being the team to slow them down this week.
  • Joe Flacco (vs Oak) – Flacco has consistently been a stud at home, and a bust on the road this season. Oakland likes to turn games into shootouts, and Flacco should bounce back from a disappointing-for-his-fantasy-owners road trip against a mediocre Oakland defense.
  • Andrew Luck (@ Jax) – Similar to Flacco, Luck’s numbers at home have been noticably better. Despite this, Jacksonville is horrible, and the Colts are surging. I’d expect this to be the best road game of the rookie’s career to date.

Runningback

  • Vick Ballard (@ Jax) – Despite the fact Donald Brown is slated to play this week, this is the prime time Thursday night game, and Brown has been out of practice, resting his surgically reconstructed knee all week. Ballard will most likely dominate the touches against a Jacksonville defense that has surrendered 10 rushing touchdowns this season.
  • Mikel LeShoure (@ Min) – The Vikings defense is looking surprisingly vulnerable to the run, and has been hit for a rushing TD the past four games. LeShoure is coming off of a three touchdown game against Jacksonville, and is a solid candidate to put up solid points this week.
  • Rashad Jennings (vs Ind) – The Colts defense is nothing spectacular, despite the team’s strong recent performances. Similar to Jacksonville, Indianapolis has let up 10 touchdowns to opposing runningbacks. Jacksonville has few weapons, and Jennings will definitely get the chance to have a monster game here.

Wide Receiver

  • Torrey Smith (vs Oak) – In four home games this year, Torrey Smith has 16 catches for 305 yards and four touchdowns. With a favorable, home matchup this week, I’d ride this trend.
  • Malcom Floyd (@ TB) – Tampa has surrendered 13 passing touchdowns, and have the league’s worst passing defense, allowing just over 320 yards per game on average. Floyd should be in for a nice day here.
  • Vincent Jackson/Mike Williams (vs SD) – In keeping with the Freeman pick for this week, you can feel safe playing his two favorite targets, as well. You have to think that V.Jax is going to want to stick it to San Diego this week, which bodes well for his fantasy owners.

Tight End

  • Dustin Keller (@ Sea) – Yup, the matchup sucks. However, Keller is the best receiving threat on this team, and has 14 catches for 170 yards and one TD in the two games since his return from injury. The Seahawks are insanely tough at home, meaning the Jets will be chasing this game. When that happens, expect a lot of garbage points from Keller.
  • Vernon Davis (vs StL) – The Rams have allowed Anthony Fasano and Gronkowski to have solid games against them recently. During this past week, Alex Smith reported that they were trying to get Davis more involved in the offense. With the huge points he was putting up at the tail end of last season, and big play potential, it could be a great time to find a frustrated owner, and buy low on Davis, despite his horrendous turnouts recently.

Team Defense

  • Pittsburgh (vs KC) – The Chiefs offense looks abysmal, with the Jamaal Charles being the lone brightspot. The Steelers defense allows the least yards per game of any team in the league. This one could be juicy.
  • Detroit (@ Min) – This defense has cleaned up its act recently, as the Lions push for the playoffs. Similarly, Christian Ponder has strangely been regressing since the beginning of the season – becoming turnover happy all of a sudden. As an added bonus, Percy Harvin is questionable for this game, so they should be able to ¬†key in on Adrian Peterson pretty heavily.

Sit ‘Em

Quarterback

  • Jay Cutler (vs Hou) – Don’t let his stats last week fool you, Cutler is no Aaron Rodgers. With JJ Watt, and the Houston Defense in his face this week, I’d be surprised if he isn’t responsible for two turnovers and a skimpy stat line.
  • Matt Schaub (@ Chi) – I’d feel shaky playing even elite quarterbacks against the Chicago defense.
  • Christian Ponder (vs Min) – Despite the decent matchup, Ponder’s play and fantasy points have been regressing. He no longer looks to be a viable fantasy play, and there are much better options out there. Leave him on the bench/waiver wire until he looks to be picking it back up.

Runningback

  • Steven Jackson (@ SF) – He plays against the 49′ers defense this week, and has been more or less splitting time 50/50 with Daryl Richardson. Low value here, and for the foreseeable future.
  • Shonn Greene (@ Sea) – Again, it’s tough to play a non-elite runningback against this defense.
  • Jamaal Charles (@ Pit) – The Steelers are allowing a league leading low in yards per game, and the Chiefs have no other weapons to take pressure off of him.

Wide Receiver

  • Danny Amendola (@ SF) – Despite his hyped return, the Rams are going to struggle in this game. Amendola should be no exception here.
  • Hakeem Nicks (@ Cin) – His knee has flared up again, and despite his claims that it is okay, he still presents a risky play. The last time we heard this story, he was little more than a decoy on the field, and had a horrible fantasy turnout. It’s always tough to bench a top tier-talent, but if you have another solid player with a favorable matchup, it’s definitely worth considering.
  • Dwayne Bowe (@ Pit) – Yeah, I don’t like the Chiefs.

Tight End

  • Jared Cook (vs Ind) – In his last few games, Cook has done literally next to nothing. He remains terribly inconsistent, and the Dolphins have not allowed a touchdown to a tight end all season. Yikes.
  • Kyle Rudolph (vs Det) – If you would have asked me in week 6 if I liked Kyle Rudolph – starting against the Lions – with Percy Harvin injured, it would be a completely different story. Unforunately, he has failed to get anything going in the past few games, and now is not a startable tight end. It’s too risky that he is going to put up another zero or half-a-point day.

Team Defense

  • San Diego (@ TB) – It’s tough for west coast teams to come to the east coast, and the Bucs offense has been on fire lately. Regardless of points this defense has been putting up lately, I’d look elsewhere for week 10.

About John Warmkessel

Operator & head writer for 1UP Fantasy Sports. Contact me at the email provided, or via the contact form on the home page of the website. Follow on twitter @1UPfantasy for up to date player advice, gameday Q & A, and more.
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