5 Players With Tough Week 12 Matchups
We all have those superstars on our rosters who should be automatic starters week after week, right? Not so fast. I don’t believe in the old adage “always start your studs”, as it’s sort of lazy and not entirely accurate if you want the most out of your fantasy squad.
In this article at 4for4, each week I take a look at individual matchups and point out players who I think could struggle, even if they’re elite. I’m not saying to sit them without question, but as the title goes, these are players with tough matchups, meaning you'll have tough lineup decisions to make.
Week 11 Wrap-Up
Excuse me while I take a victory lap, as four of the five players from this column last week were total duds. Jared Goff put up a pathetic 5.2 fantasy points as the QB27, Ronald Jones and Phillip Lindsay came in at RB59 and RB31, respectively, and Christian Kirk’s 10.2 PPR points landed him at WR35 on the week.
Here are this week’s players who you should start with caution, or not at all.
Week 12 Risky Plays
Dak Prescott (Cowboys) @ Patriots
I’m sure you’re thinking I must be nuts to even type this after Prescott’s impressive 31.6 fantasy point outing last week, but here goes. New England tops the league against the pass, surrendering a meager 8.1 in aFPA to opposing quarterbacks this season. They’re also first in aFPA to wideouts, which doesn’t bode well for Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup or Randall Cobb, either.
Foxborough tends to put some sort of hex on opposing teams regardless of weather, perhaps it’s the sorcery work of Robert Kraft. It may be tough to sit Prescott this week, but it could also benefit your roster if you’re able to swing it.
Aaron Jones (Packers) @ 49ers
Jones has 14 touchdowns through the first 10 games of the season, which is impressive, but Jamaal Williams’ increased usage is cramping his style a bit. In Week 10 before their bye, Jones had the same number of carries as Williams but saw zero targets, which is a bit concerning.
What’s even more troublesome is Jones’ buzzsaw of an opponent this week, as the Packers head to San Francisco to take on the third-ranked defense in rushing aFPA. As a unit, the 49ers are only yielding 12.2 PPR points per tilt to opposing backfields. Jones may be better left on the bench this week, if possible. At the very least, lower your expectations for his output.
Jared Cook (Saints) vs. Panthers
It’s a bummer Cook is finally healthy and producing, has his starting quarterback back, but is set up for a rough go in Week 12. Carolina is stout against tight ends so far in 2019, surrendering just 7.8 PPR points per contest as the highest-ranked unit in the NFL.
Both Brandin Cooks (concussion) and Robert Woods (personal) are expected back this week, but I’d limit your thoughts as to what they’ll produce on Monday night. With Marcus Peters and Jimmy Smith shutting things down on their sides and Marlon Humphrey working Cooper Kupp in the slot, it could be a rough day for the Los Angeles passing game.
Plus, I can’t leave out the funk Jared Goff has been in lately, posting single-digit fantasy points in his last two contests. If you can, I’d bench any Rams pass-catchers this week in favor of wideouts with a softer secondary and a quarterback who’s in rhythm.
Devin Singletary (Bills) vs. Broncos
The rookie rusher has carved out a nice role for himself in the Bills backfield this season, but also had a case of the fumbles last week, leaving two on the field. With 384 rushing yards, 115 receiving yards and three touchdowns, Singletary had pulled ahead of Frank Gore in terms of volume in the Buffalo offense, but fumbling multiple times in a game tends to puts coaches on alert.
Couple his mistakes with a Denver defense who shut down Dalvin Cook just a week ago, allowing only 26 yards on 11 carries, and you get a potential flop of a week for the 22-year-old rusher.