The NFL playoffs are now on the horizon, which means your fantasy football league’s playoffs are even closer as we head into week twelve.
Can you believe we’re looking at the Thanksgiving day fixtures already? Another exciting season of fantasy football is motoring towards its latter stages, leaving owners dead set on their final playoff push.
There a plethora of favorable match-ups next week. Most refreshing for fantasy owners, there are no teams on a BYE this week. Three games on Thanksgiving followed by a full slate of games on Sunday is fantasy nirvana. We break down who starts and who sits in week twelve.
Kirk Cousins, QB, Washington Redskins
You like that? If you own Cousins, then you absolutely liked his 375 yards and three touchdown performance in prime time against Green Bay last week. Cousins has produced multi TD efforts in six of his last eight games and hasn’t thrown more than one interception in a game since week one. The Redskins are rolling, and Cousins has been at the forefront of their resilience.
A massive NFC East showdown in Dallas on Thanksgiving will be crucial for Cousins’s club. Whether they win or lose, he should be in line for a good day statistically against Dallas’ 22nd ranked pass defense.
Eli Rogers, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Speaking of players you want to start on Thanksgiving, give Pittsburgh wideout Eli Rogers some consideration for your FLEX position. Since the Steelers’ week eight BYE, Rogers has hauled in at least four passes in three straight games. Although he didn’t produce much against Cleveland last week, the cold and windy afternoon in the midwest did not provide optimal passing conditions.
Next week at Indianapolis, Rogers faces the league’s worst pass defense (284.5 yards per game allowed) in what should be a high scoring affair. He should have little trouble getting back on track in week twelve.
Tyler Boyd, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
All pro wideout A.J. Green left Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury and could miss the remainder of the season. Boyd will surely have his chance to make his presence felt for an extended time frame. If last week’s season best six catch, 54 yard and one score performance was a sign of things to come, then Boyd’s outlook is on the upswing.
The Bengals will go on the road to face a tough Ravens defense next week, but Boyd’s volume of targets should make him a useful option, especially in PPR formats.
New York Giants Defense
After failing to record an interception over the league’s first month, the Giants now have picked off ten passes in their last six games. Steve Spagnuolo’s men seem to be improving on a weekly basis, and it hasn’t just been because of a stingy secondary. The pass rush is beginning to turn pressures into sacks, and also has one of the best red zone scoring defenses.
The Giants will face the winless Cleveland Browns in week twelve. Need I say more?
RELATED: Landon Collins furthers DPOY case
Gary Barnidge, TE, Cleveland Browns
Wait, start the Giants defense and start a player they’re opposing? Relax, it’s going to make sense. Barnidge has struggled this season, not having scored his first touchdown until last week. However, the Giants have been mediocre against the tight end in 2016, and the Browns will likely be throwing often to stay in the game.
Owned in just over 55 percent of ESPN.com leagues, Barnidge could reward patient owners in week twelve.
Andy Dalton, QB, Cincinnati Bengals
Having lost one of the best wide receivers in the game, Dalton’s stock is in the red for the reminder of the season. Rookie Tyler Boyd is an enticing young talent, however, it’s unreasonable to expect him to produce half of what Green is capable of. The Bengals’ season is fading, and it won’t get any easier when they travel to Baltimore to face the seventh best pass defense in the league.
Tyreek Hill, WR, Kansas City Chiefs
We liked Hill last week, but he underwhelmed against a soft Tampa Bay defense, nabbing just four balls for 53 yards. Jeremy Maclin‘s injuries could provide Hill with ample opportunity for game time, but that doesn’t mean he’s a safe bet to produce.
Hill and the Chiefs will travel to Denver to face the league’s second best passing defense, allowing less than 200 yards per game.
New York Jets Defense
The Jets are in danger of having their season go into complete free-fall. A showdown with the New England Patriots is the last thing they could have wanted, but these are the cards they have been dealt.
The Jets have allowed at least 27 points on five separate occasions thus far, and could very well see that number climb to six after Sunday.
Jerick McKinnon, RB, Minnesota Vikings
McKinnon ran 16 times on Sunday, the most carries he’s complied since week five. However, he’s scored just one touchdown on the season which came back in week four.
The Vikings backfield as whole is one you probably want to stay away from, as the split workload between McKinnon and Matt Asiata have not produced useful results.
Richard Rodgers, TE, Green Bay Packers
Rogers has caught at least four passes in three consecutive games. Don’t let his uptick in production fool you. Yes, the Packers’ nonexistent run game means Aaron Rodgers has to throw early and often. However, Rogers has eclipsed 28 receiving yards just once and has found the end zone on one only occasion.
Although signs seem to be posting upwards for the Green Bay tight end, don’t be lured into a few half decent games.