The Biggest Start/Sit Decisions for Week 12 (Fantasy Football)

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“I hope every one of you have a Happy Thanksgiving with your friends and families. We have a lot to be thankful for as we go through this gift called life, but without them, none of it would be worth it.
Don’t wait to appreciate something until it’s gone.
Happy Thanksgiving, my friends.”

– Mike Tagliere

Hope you all had a happy Thanksgiving, Footclan! Welcome to Week 12 of the Start/Sit series where we’ll identify and discuss your most commonly asked “Who should I start?” questions for the week.

The projections between any two players on your roster may appear similar, but this “simple” choice could be the difference between your team’s victory or defeat. Luckily, the Fantasy Footballers have created the Start/Sit tool to easily compare any two (or more) players with insight from the Ballers themselves, and trust me — it’s an extremely valuable asset that will help you make these crucial lineup decisions that could ultimately lead you to your #FootClanTitle.

Please note that the Footballers’ rankings are constantly being updated as news breaks, so make sure you check out the tool yourself to catch any last-second changes.

So without further adieu, let’s kick things off with the most popular Start/Sit questions for Week 12:

QB:
Joe Burrow (CIN) or Russell Wilson (SEA)?

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Joe Burrow

  • CIN
  • QB
  • vs PIT
  • Sun, 11/28
  • 1:00pm EST

Russell Wilson

  • SEA
  • QB
  • @ WAS
  • Mon, 11/29
  • 8:15pm EST
EXPERT PROJECTIONS
Proj. Points 18.7 19.3
Andy Rank QB #10 QB #9
Mike Rank QB #11 QB #8
Jason Rank QB #17 QB #18
MATCHUP DETAILS
Opp. Rank 17 32
Home/Away Home Away
Over/Under 44.5 46.5
Line -4 +0.5

It’s been a rough go lately for both Joe Burrow and Russell Wilson. Neither guy has been startable in fantasy; in their last two games, they’ve averaged two turnovers per match and combined for just one TD since.

For Burrow’s case, his fantasy troubles could be blamed by RB Joe Mixon‘s recent prowess at the endzone. Mixon’s scored FOUR rushing TDs since Burrow’s two-game slump. He also strangely didn’t see a single target last week despite averaging 2.9 targets before the bye. But Burrow’s primed for a bounce-back performance against a middling Steelers defense that just gave up 382 passing yards and three TDs to Justin Herbert, which made him Week 11’s top fantasy QB. Burrow’s already matched that by scoring thrice at Pittsburgh in Week 3, so history could repeat itself at Paul Brown Stadium.

Wilson has not looked great since returning from injury in Week 10. He’s been the QB25 since then, sandwiched between Mason Rudolph and Andy Dalton, which is even sadder when realizing that those QBs only played ONE game during that time span. But a trip to D.C. might just be the remedy for Wilson as he gets a chance for redemption against the Washington Football Team‘s WORST defense against QBs. The same defense that allowed Cam Newton to throw two TDs and even run one in himself. It’s why the Hitman is willing to make him his QB Start of the Week. But it’s hard to trust Wilson when his finger is still noticeably bothering him… although it hasn’t stopped him from trying as he threw the ball 40 and 26 times since returning to action (he averaged 25 pass attempts prior to injury).

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The Verdict
Wilson has the higher consensus ranking, but I’d rather wait another week and start Burrow instead.

TE:
Pat Freiermuth (PIT) or Noah Fant (DEN)?

Pat Freiermuth

  • PIT
  • TE
  • @ CIN
  • Sun, 11/28
  • 1:00pm EST

Noah Fant

  • DEN
  • TE
  • vs LAC
  • Sun, 11/28
  • 4:05pm EST
EXPERT PROJECTIONS
Proj. Points 7.8 7.5
Andy Rank TE #13 TE #11
Mike Rank TE #11 TE #13
Jason Rank TE #12 TE #15
MATCHUP DETAILS
Opp. Rank 16 31
Home/Away Away Home
Over/Under 44.5 48
Line +4 +2.5

Stay in the flames or chase the matchup? That’s the dilemma here between these two fringe TE1s.

Pat Freiermuth has been the talk of the town. Since his Week 7 bye, he’s averaged 7.3 targets, 32.3 yards, and a TD per game. This includes a Week 10 blunder where the entire offense faltered with Mason Rudolph under center. Fellow TE Eric Ebron will be out repairing his knee, although he was admittedly not a factor. Muth will have a decent shot at scoring against the Bengals, something he’s already done when they faced off in Week 3. He’s been heavily utilized in the red zone, ranking 2nd in targets from inside the 10-yard line, making him a strong DFS play.

While Muth has been consistent with Big Ben, Noah Fant has been equally inconsistent. Here are his fantasy finishes thus far this season: TE10, TE6, TE30, TE9, TE32, TE1, TE18, TE39, TE11. He’s been somewhat TD-dependent, which is not great as he’s only made three trips to the endzone. But despite his scoring troubles, he’s still seen the third-most red-zone targets among TEs, meaning he’s due for another TD, which could happen as soon as this week against the Chargers’ 31st ranked defense. Vegas projects the Broncos as +2.5 underdogs, implying that they’ll need to rely on their passing game to even the score. But a run-heavy offensive scheme against a vulnerable defensive front could make things difficult for Fant as the team leans on their superb RB duo of Melvin Gordon III and Javonte Williams.

The Verdict
It’s a toss-up as Jason and Mike prefer Muth while Andy favors Fant. I’m going with Muth.

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WR2:
Devonta Smith (PHI) or Elijah Moore (NYJ)?

DeVonta Smith

  • PHI
  • WR
  • @ NYG
  • Sun, 11/28
  • 1:00pm EST

Elijah Moore

  • NYJ
  • WR
  • @ HOU
  • Sun, 11/28
  • 1:00pm EST
EXPERT PROJECTIONS
Proj. Points 16 13.6
Andy Rank WR #19 WR #24
Mike Rank WR #19 WR #23
Jason Rank WR #14 WR #23
MATCHUP DETAILS
Opp. Rank 18 23
Home/Away Away Away
Over/Under 45.5 44.5
Line -3.5 +2.5

It’s the battle of the uber-talented rookie wideouts with terrifying QBs!

DeVonta Smith has been a phenom when given the chance, but it hasn’t always been pretty with QB Jalen Hurts at the helm. Making matters worse, the Eagles currently boast the lowest percentage of passing plays in the NFL. Smith is averaging just 6.6 targets per game, but their value is boosted as those targets account for the fifth HIGHEST aDOT (13.8) among receivers (minimum 50 targets). Again, these passes are coming from Hurts, meaning they aren’t the most reliable touches. But when they do connect? *chef’s kiss*

Are you aboard the Elijah Moore hype train? If you haven’t gotten your ticket, then it’s probably too late as the train has already left the station after an explosive 8-141-1 showcase against the Dolphins last week. The dude is a playmaker. Moore’s consistently seen a higher workload regardless of QB, averaging 8.3 targets in his last three games and at least six targets in each of his last five games. He’s earned his opportunities and should continue to see high usage with WR Corey Davis hobbled (ankle).

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The concern, of course, is that rookie QB Zach Wilson will return to spoil the breakout party with his shaky gameplay and inexperience. But perhaps Wilson doesn’t deserve to shoulder all the offensive woes. Maybe the offense improved after OC Mike LaFleur left the sideline in Week 8 (after Wilson’s injury) and started calling plays up in the booth, just like he always wanted to do? And maybe now that the team hired Wilson’s personal coach John Beck to console him during the games, we’ll see a calmer Wilson that benefits from LaFleur’s eagle-eye game-planning? It’s definitely risky, but Moore’s upside is clearly evident and makes him a tempting option for those in tougher matchups.

The Verdict
The Ballers unanimously prefer Smith, but I’m riding with Moore. Choo choo!

RB2:
Miles Sanders (PHI) or Antonio Gibson (WFT)?

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Miles Sanders

  • PHI
  • RB
  • @ NYG
  • Sun, 11/28
  • 1:00pm EST

Antonio Gibson

  • WAS
  • RB
  • vs SEA
  • Mon, 11/29
  • 8:15pm EST
EXPERT PROJECTIONS
Proj. Points 13.5 14.7
Andy Rank RB #18 RB #14
Mike Rank RB #16 RB #15
Jason Rank RB #18 RB #14
MATCHUP DETAILS
Opp. Rank 25 30
Home/Away Away Home
Over/Under 45.5 46.5
Line -3.5 -0.5

It wasn’t the triumphant return we were hoping for, but RB Miles Sanders encouragingly saw his season-high rushing attempts in his return match last week against the Saints. He rushed 16 times for an impressive 94 yards (plus one missed target), although he did have a costly fumble that allowed journeyman RB Jordan Howard to siphon touches. But now that Howard is ruled out, Sanders should continue to see high usage against a favorable opponent in the Giants. Let’s just hope QB Jalen Hurts doesn’t vulture all his TDs again.

Similarly, Antonio Gibson also had a “meh” fantasy performance last week but was at least heavily involved, rushing 19 times for 95 yards and a fumble. We all know the story on Gibson: he’s highly gamescript-dependent. His workload — and subsequently his fantasy production — increases dramatically when the team holds a lead, but it suffers just as badly when they’re losing. Unfortunately for Gibson managers, WFT finds themselves in the latter position way too often. But Vegas currently projects Washington to (barely) win over the Seahawks, which is promising for Gibson’s projections. Against a weak defense that gives up the third MOST fantasy points to opposing RBs, including 128 all-purpose yards and two TDs to AJ Dillon in Week 10, Gibson should thrive if the offense doesn’t fall apart and the defense can control an injured Russell Wilson. Gibson is Jason’s RB Start of the Week.

The Verdict
The gang unanimously favors Gibson. I like both guys, but Sanders feels “safer” to me so he gets my vote.

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