Start ‘Em or Sit ‘Em (2019): Running Back Edition: Week 15: James White, Raheem Mostert, Devin Singletary & More

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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:

James White – New England Patriots (at CIN)

The Bengals represent a favorable matchup for the New England running game, including allowing the fourth most rushing yards over the past four weeks (455).  That is going to put White on fantasy maps, but it’s not like he is guaranteed carries:

  • at Philadelphia (11/17) – 5 carries for 20 yards
  • vs. Dallas (11/24) – 2 carries for 5 yards
  • at Houston (12/01) – 14 carries for 79 yards
  • vs. Kansas City (12/08) – 6 carries for 33 yards

White is the pass catcher, and he’s had 13 catches over the past two weeks.  The Bengals have actually been far less prone to pass catching running backs (20 catches for 155 yards over the past four weeks), and they’ve only allowed 3 receiving TD to opposing running backs all season. 

Verdict – PPR FLEX option, and nothing more (Sit ‘Em for most)

Raheem Mostert – San Francisco 49ers (vs. ATL)

It’s easy to say that Mostert has emerged as the leader of San Francisco’s backfield in recent weeks and he’s produced, but it’s not like he’s a true “lead back” in the traditional sense.  He’s going to share the load, given the number of options the team has.  Just look at the breakdown of carries from a week ago:

  • Raheem Mostert – 10 carries for 69 yards & 1 TD
  • Matt Breida – 6 carries for 54 yards
  • Tevin Coleman – 3 carries for 6 yards

Both Breida and Coleman are going to get touches, and Mostert may not get more than 8-12 touches against the Falcons.  It’s also not like the Falcons are an easy matchup to target and while Mostert could continue to make the most of limited opportunities, is it hard to envision a new hot hand emerging that they focus on?

Verdict – FLEX option (but highly risky Sit ‘Em for most)

Marlon Mack – Indianapolis Colts (at NO)

Mack returned in Week 14 but wasn’t very impressive, taking 13 carries for 38 yards (2.8 YPC) and 1 TD against the Buccaneers.  The matchup doesn’t get much easier this week, as the Saints have allowed the eighth fewest points per week to opposing running backs and just 5 rushing TD.  Mack also doesn’t have the benefit of being a part of the passing game, as he’s been targeted 14 times all season.

While it’s nice to see him healthy, the matchup alone makes him tough to trust.

Verdict – Sit ‘Em

Devin Singletary – Buffalo Bills (at PIT)

The Steelers are among the best defenses against opposing running backs this season, allowing the fifth fewest points per game.  At the same time Singletary just faced the Baltimore Ravens (fourth fewest points per week), and they couldn’t slow him down:

  • Rushing – 17 carries for 82 yards (5.2 YPC)
  • Receiving – 6 catches for 29 yards

He’s clearly emerged as the lead back, and after proving he can produce even in a tough matchup it’s hard to say he isn’t a viable RB2.

Verdict – Start ‘Em (as a lower end RB2)

Bo Scarbrough – Detroit Lions (vs. TB)

Sure he’s the “leader” of the backfield, but he’s a TD dependent option that has now gone three straight games without finding the end zone.  Then you get what is among the most difficult matchups for running backs in Tampa Bay:

  • 763 rushing yards (fewest in the NFL)
  • 5 rushing TD (tied for fifth fewest in the NFL)

Verdict – Sit ‘Em

Sources – NFL.com, ESPN

23 COMMENTS

  1. So. Many. Injuries. 🙁 14 Team, 1/2 PPR.

    My “known starts” are: Dak Prescott, Travis Kelce and Robbie Gould

    Opponents roster: Ryan Tannehill, Cooper Kupp, Julio Jones, Aaron Jones, Kareem Hunt, Darren Waller, OBJr, Harrison Butker, GB DST, Josh Allen, David Montgomery, Michael Gallup, Matt Breida and Diontae Johnson.

    1. WRs are Golden Tate, Russell Gage, Chris Conley and Breshad Perriman…which two would you start? Randall Cobb, John Ross III, Corey Davis, Allen Lazard and Allen Hurns still available.

    2. Assuming RBs are Nick Chubb and Leonard Fournette, who would you flex from whoever remains from #1, Ronald Jones II, Jamaal Williams, Tyler Higbee and DeAndre Washington. Boston Scott still available

    3. Currently have Buffalo DST, roll them out or Oakland, Tampa Bay, Giants, Cleveland, Tennessee or Dallas still available.

    4. Thank you!

      • (since so much of my bench are strangers b/c of the injuries and hail mary sleepers, this is the most i’ve ever been unsure in my entire fantasy football career…just wanted to check in again after some injury updates today)

        2a. Did/do you have a close 2nd or 3rd?

        2b. Was considering Tyler Higbee but didn’t want to sway you in any way…what are your thoughts on him? Gage? Conley?

        2c. If Josh Jacobs (who apparently couldn’t put on his own sweater yesterday, but still plans to play) doesn’t start, thoughts on DeAndre Washington?

  2. Standard Need to start 3?
    RB J Conner ( can he be trust)
    RB K Drake
    WR D Adams ( tough DEF)
    WR A Theilen ( LAC been tough lately)
    WR D Parker

  3. What’s up Professor? 2 Questions for PPR. 1- Please choose 1RB and 1 FLEX from…Christian Kirk, Singletary, McCoy and Mack?
    2- Do you roll with Winston or go with Wentz or Brissett?
    Thanks for the time

  4. Sorry for the long question but I have so many question marks I can’t believe I’m still alive. Please choose 1WR, 1RB and 1 FLEX for PPR from…

    WR-T.Y Hilton, Christian Kirk, McLaurin
    RB- Jacobs, Conner, David Johnson, DeAndre Washington.
    TE- Njoku

  5. Standard Mostert or Kamara

    Standard Parker or Slayton

    Standard Winston, Garropolo or Brisett

    Standard flex Allan Robinson or Miles Sanders

    Standard Mostert or Miles Sanders

    Standard flex Mostert or Lockett

    Standard Tanneyhill or Winston

    Standard flex Miled Sanders, Lockett, Slayton or Mostert

    Standard Lindsey or Mostert

    Standard flex AJ Brown, DeVante Parker or Mostert

    • Standard Mostert or Kamara — Kamara

      Standard Parker or Slayton — Parker

      Standard Winston, Garropolo or Brisett — Winston

      Standard flex Allan Robinson or Miles Sanders — Robinson

      Standard Mostert or Miles Sanders — Sanders

      Standard flex Mostert or Lockett — Lockett (but it’s close)

      Standard Tanneyhill or Winston — Winston

      Standard flex Miled Sanders, Lockett, Slayton or Mostert — Sanders

      Standard Lindsey or Mostert — Lindsay

      Standard flex AJ Brown, DeVante Parker or Mostert — Parker

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