Sunday Morning Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em: Lamar Miller, Giovani Bernard, Alfred Blue & More

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

Just hours before the start of Week 12 I know many people have questions running through their heads. Who should I start? Who should I sit? Let’s take a look at how some of the recent news changes things:

 

Trent Richardson – Running Back – Indianapolis Colts
Ahmad Bradshaw has been lost for the season to a broken leg, leaving Richardson as the lead back for Indianapolis. He has averaged 3.4 yards per carry overall and has had 13 total carries over the past two games (including a 6 carry, 0 yard performance against the Patriots).

Of course, the news comes at an ideal time for Richardson who draws the porous Jaguars defense (who are allowing the seventh most points per week to opposing running backs, fourth most over the past two weeks). Richardson also arguably had his best game of the season against them, with 80 total yards and averaging 4.1 YPC.

Lineup Recommendation – There’s obviously still risk, but consider him a viable RB2 for the coming week

 

Mark Ingram – Running Back – New Orleans Saints
In his recent Saints Mailbag, when asked about Ingram’s role on Monday night Mike Triplett (click here for the article) said:

“I’ve got to imagine that Ingram’s success has been a bit of an eye-opener for coach Sean Payton, who can’t ignore the fact that Ingram has gotten into such a nice rhythm with his high volume of carries. So I’d expect Ingram to still be the clear leader in the backfield, getting 15-plus touches.”

Khiry Robinson is out again but Pierre Thomas is set to go. Regardless, at this point it doesn’t have an impact on Ingram’s value. The problem, however, is that the Saints draw a Ravens’s defense that is giving up the fewest points to opposing running backs this season. While Ingram has gone for at least 97 total yards in four straight games, this is going to be tough sledding.

Lineup Recommendation – He’s been playing too well to ignore, but consider him more of a RB2 for this week

 

Delanie Walker – Tight End – Tennessee Titans
According to Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean (click here for the article):

“Titans tight end Delanie Walker passed his final concussion tests and doctors have cleared him to return to action.”

Walker hasn’t played since November 9 against the Ravens. The Eagles are allowing the second fewest points per week to opposing tight ends, though they have allowed 10 catches for 180 yards over the past two weeks to them. Still, Walker has been above 60 yards just twice all season and has 1 TD in his last five games.

Lineup Recommendation – Consider him a risky TE1 and only playable if you have no other alternative

 

Alfred Blue – Running Back – Houston Texans
According to Tania Gangulia (via Twitter):

“Foster? Very, very low. And yes to the second question. “@MartyDawood: @taniaganguli chances of playing? And if blue starts, 20+ touches?”

The Bengals have allowed 344 total yards and 3 TD to opposing running backs over the past two weeks making this a matchup to exploit. Obviously check Foster’s status, just in case, but Blue appears primed for a heavy workload.

Lineup Recommendation – If Foster is out, consider Blue a potential RB1

 

Lamar Miller – Running Back – Miami Dolphins
Miller is listed as questionable, courtesy of a knee injury he suffered during the week. Complicating matters even more, with a 4:25 start time we likely won’t have any clarity of his status before the early games kickoff.

Denver has actually yielded the fewest rushing yards to opposing backs this season (567) and the Dolphins could easily split the load between Miller, Daniel Thomas and Damien Williams.

Lineup Recommendation – Unless you have no other alternative, Miller is probably too risky to trust

 

Larry Fitzgerald – Wide Receiver – Arizona Cardinals
He’s listed as questionable, missed practice all week and draws the Seahwaks. What part of that equation sounds like a good idea?

Lineup Recommendation – Consider him virtually unusable this week

 

Giovani Bernard – Running Back – Cincinnati Bengals
He’s listed as probable, but how much is he going to play? Jeremy Hill has excelled in his absence, including a pair of games of over 150 rushing yards. Could Bernard be more of a passing down/third down back upon his return? It seems incredibly realistic.

The Texans have allowed the fifth most receiving yards to running backs this season, so even if that’s role he will be usable. However, his value is not quite what it was prior to his injury.

Lineup Recommendation – He’s potentially a RB2, but more of a FLEX play

 

Charles Sims – Running Back – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
According to Matt Baker of the Tampa Bay Times (click here for the article):

“For the first time all season, the Bucs’ four backs are all expected to be healthy, though Martin and rookie Charles Sims are listed as questionable. Smith said Martin got back into his routine with a great week of practice after missing the past three games with an ankle injury.”

Chicago’s defense has allowed 275 total yards to opposing running backs over the past two weeks, but the uncertainty makes this a difficult situation to trust.

Lineup Recommendation – Unless you are desperate, avoid all Tampa Bay running backs this week

 

Kyle Rudolph – Tight End – Minnesota Vikings
We should see his role expand this week after being eased back into action last week. That said, exactly how much he’s going to play is a bit of an unknown and he also draws a much tougher matchup in Green Bay?  While there’s clearly still upside, letting things play out and seeing how he’s used would be the prudent decision.

Lineup Recommendation – He’s more of TE2 unless you are desperate for an option

 

*** Make sure to pre-order Rotoprofessor’s 2015 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide for just $5 today, complete with projections of over 500 players, expended rankings, sleepers, Top 50 prospects and so much more (including constant updates up until opening day).  For more information and to place your order, click here. ***

Make sure to check out all of our Week 12 rankings:

Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em (2014): Week 13: Start Denard Robinson, Sit LeGarrette Blount & More
Start 'Em or Sit 'Em (2014): Week 12: Start Josh Gordon, Sit Eric Decker and More

13 comments

  1. Bill says:

    PPR, start two out of Blue, Ingram, Jennings.

  2. sahel kazemi says:

    Mistah Professor,

    14 team .5 ppr league, with the playoffs on the line, at the flex do you role with edelman, vereen, stills, or sproles? Thank you man of calculations.

  3. dnz says:

    Hi!

    Yahoo standard:

    Stafford or Hoyer? Josh Gordon is back…

    V. Jackson, P. Garcon, D. Baldwin, W. Welker. Start the first three and bench Welker?

    P. Thomas and/or Juwan Thompson over B. Sankey and/or I. Crowell in Flex? Nah, right?

    Thanks!

  4. Bill = Blue & Jennings for me

    sahel kazemi – I’d say Edelman has the highest upside, given the matchup

    dnz – Still gotta go Stafford, yes on sitting Welker and nah. Tough to trust either of the first two

  5. Randy says:

    Who do you like at flex in a standard league out of Crowell, Ryan Mathews, Gordon, and Jordan Matthews? Thanks!

  6. Ryan says:

    Hey Professor,
    Would you start TRich over And of these WR? Gordon/Evans/Jeffery?

  7. chris says:

    ok roto need a big win this week…starting lacy and cj Anderson and sanders at WR….need wr2 and flex…boldin..stills..v jax..l miller..west…also startind indy def but can pickup NE or houstin as well

    thanks roto

  8. Dave says:

    Trying to decide if I should drop Michael Floyd at this point, I could use his roster spot to pick up an extra D that has good matchups for the last week of regular, and first week of the regular season.

    Other side outs are M Bryant, Reuben Randle D Baldwin, and Josh Gordon.

  9. Randy – Generally it would be Gordon, but the potential snap count is a concern. Crowell has the best matchup and has been good of late. I’d lean that way.

    Ryan – Maybe Gordon, but only because of the potential snap count. Even with the opportunity, I’m not the biggest fan of Richardson, though.

    chris – Hard to trust Jackson, so I’d lean Boldin. As for the FLEX, ugh… It’s Jackson if you are comfortable there, otherwise take the risk on Miller (who is supposed to be active). And I’d roll with Indy

    Dave – I’d keep Floyd still. The upside is there, especially with Fitzgerald banged up right now

  10. RT says:

    RP – Pick 3 please. Thank you

    CJ Anderson
    Trent Richardson
    Alfred Blue
    Denard Robinson

  11. Blue & Robinson are locks

    I’d prob. go Anderson as the third

  12. Andy says:

    Professor, my D Allen and C Clay is out, who should I pick? J Tamme. Z Ertz, T Wright or N Paul. Thanks.

  13. Vince says:

    Jacob Tamme or Kyle Rudolph at TE?

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