Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson

Tommy Gilligan/USA Today Sports

Thomason: Start 'Em, Sit 'Em For Week 13

Lamar Jackson has a quality matchup, while Matt Stafford could have trouble on the horizon.

Jack Thomason
November 29, 2018 - 10:45 am

(670 The Score) "Sit ‘Em, Start ‘Em" is a breakdown of some of the best and worst fantasy football matchups to help you navigate setting your lineups for the week.

My goal with this article is to provide you with a player to start who may not be the most obvious of starts and to share a player to sit who you normally wouldn't consider shying away from regardless of matchup.


START – Lamar Jackson, Ravens (at Falcons) Jackson has a high floor due to his rushing ability. He has rushed 37 times for 190 yards and a score in his first two starts, making him a safe play regardless of his 164-yard passing average  in those games. He has also thrown one touchdown and three interceptions but has still scored 18-plus fantasy points in his two starts. The Falcons present another prime matchup, as they rank 29th in Football Outsiders' pass DVOA and 32nd in 4for4's schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed (aFPA) to quarterbacks. 

SIT – Matt Stafford, Lions (vs. Rams) Stafford and the Lions' offense have struggled since trading away Golden Tate, and now Marvin Jones is on injured reserve and Kerryon Johnson is missing with a knee injury. The Lions are looking to use a more ball-control offense right now and although they'll need to throw to catch up to the Rams and their 30.5-point total, the lack of weapons is concerning. There's also the possibility that Aqib Talib returns in the Rams' secondary, which will be a huge boost for that unit. The Lions are 10-point home underdogs in a matchup that doesn't bode well for Stafford, as the Rams rank seventh in pass DVOA. 

Running back

START – Chris Carson, Seahawks (vs. 49ers) Seattle kept its playoff hopes alive by winning in Carolina last week. Now the Seahawks return home as 10-point favorites against their division rival 49ers. While the 49ers rank 14th in both run DVOA and aFPA to running backs, we know how the Seahawks play offense, and it starts with the running game. Carson has three touchdowns in his last four games, one of which he barely played in. I look for Carson to have 20-plus touches in a game in which the Seahawks have a team total of 27.5 points. 

SIT – Adrian Peterson, Redskins (at Eagles) Even though the Eagles have slipped of late in run defense (24th in DVOA, 21st in aFPA), the Redskins have their own challenges on offense. Their offensive line has been decimated by injuries once again, and they lost starting quarterback Alex Smith. And in the case of Peterson, Chris Thompson seems set to return from his injury. The Redskins are six-point road underdogs, which should bode well for Thompson and the passing game. Over the last four weeks, Peterson has averaged 2.9 yards per carry. He's a touchdown-or-bust option.


START – DJ Moore, Panthers (at Buccaneers) We know the drill against the Buccaneers' pass defense in the last two years: You play your receivers against them. Devin Funchess looks like he won't be dressing again and now Curtis Samuel isn't practicing, leaving Moore as the primary target along with Greg Olsen and Christian McCaffrey. Over Moore's last two games, he has 15 receptions, 248 yards and a touchdown. Now he will face a Tampa Bay defense that ranks 32nd in pass DVOA and 25th in aFPA to receivers.

SIT – Jarvis Landry, Browns (at Texans) Landry has vanished from the Browns' offense of late. Over the last six weeks, Landry has topped 40 yards just twice and has only one score during that time. Cleveland quarterback Baker Mayfield seems to be looking elsewhere since Freddie Kitchens took over as offensive coordinator. Landry is averaging less than six targets per game over his last five contests.

Tight end

START – Austin Hooper, Falcons (vs. Ravens) Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan is quietly having a phenomenal season, and Hooper is one of the beneficiaries. The Ravens rank 21st in DVOA to tight ends and 20th in aFPA to tight ends. In four of the last seven games, Hooper has had five receptions or more, including a 10-reception game and two games with nine catches. He should be a factor in this one given the Ravens' stout outside cornerbacks and their affinity for being attacked inside the numbers. 

SIT – Jimmy Graham, Packers (vs. Cardinals) Not only is Graham dealing with a broken thumb, but he has only played 42.5 percent of the snaps in the last two weeks. It wasn't until near the end of the game last week that he had a reception as well. The Cardinals are also playing good defense and match up well against tight ends. They rank third in aFPA to the position, and the Packers' offense in general has been out of sync other than the work of receiver Davante Adams and running back Aaron Jones. 

Other starts: Dak Prescott (vs. Saints), Austin Ekeler (at Steelers), Josh Reynolds (at Lions) and Eric Ebron (at Jaguars).

Other sits: Tom Brady (vs. Vikings), Peyton Barber (vs. Panthers), Alshon Jeffrey (vs. Redskins) and Vance McDonald (vs. Chargers).

Jack Thomason is 670 The Score’s fantasy football expert. Follow him on Twitter @jthomason77 and feel free to ask fantasy questions.​