Week 15: Sit 'Em
This weekly column will feature players that are normally solid bets for fantasy production, but not worth starting in a particular week.
Week 14 Recap:
There were a few surprises here. Garcon had a huge game, Schaub was decent and Gronkowski and Jones scored touch downs.
Matt Schaub threw the ball 62 times for 393 yards with three touch downs and two interceptions.
Braylon Edwards had one reception for 17 yards.
Marshawn Lynch rushed for 29 yards and had 37 receiving yards.
Felix Jones rushed for 41 yards with a touch down and added 42 yards receiving.
Rob Gronkowski caught five passes for 43 yards and a score.
Pierre Garcon caught six passes for 93 yards and two scores.
The Chicago defense was destroyed by New England's powerful offense.
Week 15 Sit'em:
I hope your fantasy playoffs are going better than mine. So far my fantasy playoffs are off to a rocky start. I am already out of one bracket with a poor performance in Week 14 from several players I thought I could count on. Of course I sat Torain too. In my other league I also suffered a loss, but my two week match-up playoff format will hopefully keep me in the hunt.
We are going to see more surprises and upsets in Week 15 and I encourage you to review and study every resource you can in order to support your roster assignments. Consider all of your resources and ultimately, listen to your gut. When it boils right down to it, every line-up change we make is under our own control. I review many variables each week writing this column and in the end recommendations are made based upon data and opinion. Play devil's advocate with each of your roster spots and then make the most educated decision. Week 15 will bring the normal ups and downs of fantasy playoffs so hold on for the ride. This week I suggest sitting several running backs, a wide out, a tight end and a defense. Sit Chris Ivory versus Baltimore. Ryan Mathews should be on your bench against San Francisco with Tolbert stealing carries. Brian Westbrook versus San Diego is not a great match-up. Keiland Williams should be sitting with the explosive return of Ryan Torain. Mike Thomas will struggle along with Garrard versus the Indianapolis pass rush. Brandon Pettigrew is falling off in performance. The San Francisco defense will get torn up by San Diego and Rivers. Good luck.
Ivory has shown sparks of brilliance this season and has the ability to shred defenses, but this week's match-up versus Baltimore is not appealing, especially during fantasy playoffs. Ivory and Thomas will tag team this running scheme and likely will see their efforts shunted by Baltimore's sturdy run defense. Look for Ivory to rush for around 50 yards without a score. You should sit Thomas as well if you had any thoughts of throwing him into your line-up. Ivory will struggle and I think Baltimore will actually come out on top after this outing.
Mathews has returned to action and did have a solid outing with a score last week, but this week I do not think his performance will be up to par. Tolbert continues to steal carries (especially in the red zone) and this means Mathews' scoring opportunities will take a hit. San Francisco's defense is no slouch and will be looking to keep pace so that their team can continue it's playoff run at one game back in their division. San Diego will also throw early and often, detracting from the running game. By most reports, Mathews is a flex starter at best this week and in my opinion, not even worth that. Look for about 40 yards rushing with a few short yardage receptions.
Westbrook and his San Francisco teammates are up against a stout San Diego defense this week. Look for San Francisco to abandon the run early due to lack of success. The air attack will have a much better chance of penetrating the San Diego defense. Westbrook has some value in that he will likely be utilized in the passing game. If you have him in PPR formats he might be worth a look, otherwise, forget about him in Week 15. Westbrook will have a max of 60 yards rushing and might see five receptions tops, but for shorter yardage as San Diego's coverage is tight.
Ryan Torain is back. That means Williams will likely be relegated to a third down running back in Washington's schemes. Torain was sidelined with a hamstring injury for several weeks, giving Williams the start and the opportunity to capitalize in terms of fantasy points. However, last week Torain returned with a strong performance and now Williams will drift back into the shadows. Watch Williams because if anything happens to Torain, he is the man; but until then, sit him and start Torain.
Mike Thomas has a favorable match-up against the Indianapolis secondary in Week 15 and might be worth a look in PPR leagues, but I feel his value is below average given the fact that David Garrard will struggle with the Indianapolis pass rush. Jones-Drew should have a field day in this outing on the ground and Garrard and the air attack will be kept at bay. Look for Thomas to grab a few passes, maybe four at most for minimal yardage.