Week 12 QB Start, Sit Fantasy Strategy: Matt Ryan in for a Big Game if Healthy

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There are a lot of great quarterbacks for fantasy this season. With high-flying offenses and big point games becoming the new norm for the NFL, fantasy points for quarterbacks keep going up. There are some quarterbacks who should always be started, like Lamar Jackson and maybe Russell Wilson. On this list I tried to include more quarterbacks who are on a start/don’t start basis. Here are my recommendations for which quarterbacks to start and which to sit for week 12.

Start ‘Em

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons

Matt Ryan has a great matchup this week against the Buccaneers. The Bucs allow an average 290.9 passing yards, the 2nd most in the league. The Falcons are also one of the most powerful passing offenses this season, getting 300.3 passing yards per game on average, the 3rd most in the league. He had a 14.6 and a 16.4 point performance in PPR leagues over the past two weeks, but I’m expecting a much bigger performance out of him against the Buccaneers. I’d say he’d be the best start out of anyone on this list for week 12. He’s listed as questionable for week 12 and didn’t practice today (Wednesday) due to an ankle injury. He didn’t leave their last matchup due to the injury, so I’m not sure how severe it is. If you’re thinking of starting him for week 12, keep an eye on his status throughout the week to make sure he doesn’t end up benched due to injury.

Jacoby Brissett, Indianapolis Colts

The last time Brissett played the Texans he put up 35 fantasy points. They’re facing them again this week and I’m expecting similar numbers out of Brissett. The Texans have been allowing some big fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks over the past couple weeks, and I don’t think Brissett is going to be an exception. Plus, Brissett might be getting T.Y. Hilton back, which would be a big boost to their passing game.

Tom Brady, New England Patriots

Despite his legendary status as the “GOAT” Brady hasn’t been the greatest fantasy quarterback as of late. He’s scored less than 14 points in three of his last four matchups, the only exception being an 18.4 point performance against the Browns. The Patriots are playing the Cowboys, who have allowed some big points to opposing quarterbacks lately. Jeff Driskel, backup quarterback for the Lions, put up 27.5 points against the Cowboys. If a backup quarterback can put up this big of a performance, I don’t doubt that Tom Brady can do the same.

Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders

Carr has been a solid fantasy quarterback in the latter half of this season. After their bye in week 6, he’s had 3 out of 5 games above 19 points in PPR leagues, including a 23.4 point performance against the Texans. The Jets allow an average 253.3 yards through the air and 25.5 total points each game, so I think Carr is going to be continuing his streak of strong performances this week.

Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns

The Browns are going up against the Dolphins this week, a favorable matchup. The Dolphins allow an average 21+ fantasy points to opponents, so nearly any quarterback would be a good start. He’s scored 17.1, 17.6, and 21.8 points in weeks 9, 10, and 11 respectively. So not only does he have a good matchup, but he’s been pretty productive against some tough defenses as well. Baker Mayfield has a promising matchup this week against the Dolphins and is another highly recommended quarterback to start in week 12.

Sit ‘Em

Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams

As a Rams fan, it pains me to say that Jared Goff hasn’t been meeting the bar he set for himself last year. He has 11 touchdowns, 10 interceptions, and 7 fumbles on the year. The Rams haven’t looked as powerful especially in the latter half of the season, and I think it’s due mostly to Goff’s struggles this season. In week 10, he put up just 3.7 fantasy points against the Steelers. In week 11, he had 5.2 fantasy points. They’re going up against a Baltimore defense that looks pretty strong this year, so I’m not expecting a ton of points out of Goff in week 12.

Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Winston’s been a pretty good fantasy quarterback this year. However, he’s thrown the most interceptions out of any quarterback in the league this season, including four in his last game. They’re playing the Falcons this weekend, which would have placed him in the “start ‘em” category if this was earlier in the season. However, the Falcons defense looks hot lately, holding two powerful offenses, the Saints and Panthers, to 9 and 3 points respectively over the past two weeks. The Falcons pass rush has sacked opposing quarterbacks 11 times, and the Buccaneers offensive line has allowed 36 sacks on the season. I’m expecting an underwhelming stat line from Winston for week 12.

Daniel Jones, New York Giants

Jones has been on and off this season. He had a huge game in week 10 against the Jets, putting up 30.3 fantasy points, and had a 34.2 point game in his first start against the Buccaneers. He’s also had some lows, like a 5.2 point game against the Patriots and a 10.4 point game against the Cardinals. I’m expecting an underwhelming performance for Jones this week as the Giants face the Bears. I think the Bears defense is good enough to keep Jones contained, especially with his tendency to fumble and the Bears’ strong pass rush.

Aaron Rodgers, San Francisco 49ers

Despite heading an 8-2 team, Rodgers hasn’t been an incredible fantasy quarterback this season. He’s had some pretty high highs, like a 43.8 point game against Oakland in week 7, but has also had some lows. In six of their ten games Rodgers has put up under 15 points in fantasy leagues. The Packers have a tough matchup against the 49ers this week. The 49ers have allowed opposing quarterbacks the second-lowest average fantasy points this year, so I’m not expecting a huge game from Rodgers.

Carson Wentz, Philadelphia Eagles

It seems like this is the tale too often for the Eagles, but their receiver core is riddled with injuries once again. Nelson Agholor missed practice today (Wednesday) with a knee injury, and Alshon Jeffrey is still questionable with the ankle injury that kept him out against the Patriots. As we saw earlier in the season, an injured receiver core leads to tough games for the Eagles. I think if both of these receivers are out, Wentz isn’t going to put up the greatest numbers. They’re playing the Seahawks, who usually allow quite a few points, but I think if the Eagles’ offense is missing these two weapons it’s going to be tough for them to realize the potential of their matchup.

I'm a student at UC Santa Barbara studying English. I've been watching football for almost my entire life. A couple of years ago, I started to really get into statistics and became a lot more interested in the NFL and have been really excited about it ever since.

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