Trying to decide who you should start or sit this week? Let’s take a look at a few potential decisions owners have and try to sort through them:
Start – Derek Carr – Oakland Raiders – at New York Jets
Over the past five games Derek Carr has 285+ yards four times, including 9 TD vs. 2 INT. There are concerns over his receiving corps, but they do have several different options and any of them could step up and deliver big numbers on any given day.
Then you have the matchup, with the Jets being abysmal against opposing quarterbacks all season long. They’ve allowed 18 TD vs. 6 INT overall, but over the past four weeks they’ve been even worse as they’ve allowed the fifth most points courtesy of 12 TD vs. 1 INT (at least 2 TD in each game).
Sit – Jared Goff – Los Angeles Rams – vs. Baltimore
The Los Angeles Rams offense has been disappointing as a whole this season, and Goff has been right at the center of it. Just look at the performance over the past two weeks as an example:
- at Pittsburgh – 243 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT
- vs. Chicago – 173 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
He has 11 TD vs. 10 INT overall and now draws a Baltimore defense that’s allowed 9 TD all year long (compared to 8 INT). Why would we think that he’d suddenly be able to figure it out, especially in this matchup?
Additional Quarterback to Start:
- Baker Mayfield (CLE; vs. MIA) – Obviously the Browns offense has been a disappointment, but over his past three games they have shown a little bit of upside. For Mayfield he has 5 TD vs. 0 INT over this stretch, and we all know the Dolphins have been a pick on defense this year (23 TD vs. 6 INT). Obviously there’s risk, considering the struggles, but he should be able to continue producing given the matchup.
Additional Quarterback to Sit:
- Jimmy Garoppolo (SF; vs. GB) – The Packers have allowed just 12 TD on the season, and before we get excited about Garoppolo’s recent performances let’s not overlook that he’s exploited the Arizona Cardinals repeatedly (741 yards and 8 TD in two games). The Packers are not the Cardinals and expecting him to continue producing would be a mistake. For this week move on to the next streaming option.
Start – Ryan Griffin – New York Jets – vs. Oakland
Chris Herndon was supposed to be “the man” for the Jets at tight end this season, but injury and suspension has rendered him completely useless. It took time but Griffin has stepped up and delivered, especially over the past four games (with one glaring exception):
- at Jacksonville – 4 receptions, 66 yards, 2 TD
- at Miami – 6 receptions, 50 yards
- vs. New York Giants – 1 reception, -2 yards
- at Washington – 5 receptions, 109 yards, 1 TD
The Raiders have allowed 3 TD to opposing tight ends over the past four weeks, and overall they’ve allowed the fifth most points per week to TE (571 yards, 7 TD). While the Jets do have other weapons, matchup and production would lead you to believe Griffin will be a factor once again.
Sit – Jimmy Graham – Green Bay Packers – at San Francisco
The San Francisco 49ers have allowed 231 yards and 2 TD to opposing tight ends all season long, with only the Bills allowing fewer points (and it’s not by much). That alone is going to nearly eliminate Graham’s potential value, especially with his production this season. He’s continuously had complete duds, including 20 yards or less in three of his past five games and never having more than 65 yards in a game. Sure it’s always possible he finds the end zone (he has 3 TD), but that’s the only thing that’s going to give him value and in this matchup that’s impossible to expect.
Additional Tight Ends to Start:
- Greg Olsen (CAR; at NO) – It’s been seven games since he’s found the end zone (and his 2 TD both came in one game), but he has averaged 7 targets/game over the past three games and has 155 yards over the past two. Given the state of the position that’s enough to lock him in as a viable TE1.
- Jacob Hollister (SEA; at PHI) – Hollister has 3 TD over the past two games, courtesy of 12 catches and 99 yards. The Seahawks have incorporated their TE into the offense all season long (remember Will Dissly, before injury cost him the season), so why wouldn’t we expect that to continue?
Additional Tight End to Sit:
- Noah Fant (DEN; at BUF) – Don’t trust rookie tight ends. That’s the typical narrative, and while Fant and T.J. Hockenson have shown glimpses consistency has not been their strong suit. Fant has 7 catches for 175 yards and 1 TD over the past two games, but he had a total of 185 yards and 1 TD prior to this stretch and draws a nearly impossible matchup to exploit. Now isn’t the time to think he’s a dependable option.
Sources – ESPN, NFL.com
Make sure to check out all of our Week 12 rankings: