Week 12: Sit 'Em
Philip Rivers has been a fantasy steal this season, racking up big games throughout the season. Rivers had somewhat of a down game in week 11, throwing for 298 yards, one touchdown and one interception in a loss to the Dolphins. The Chargers will face another stiff test in week 12 as they travel to Kansas City to take on the league's ninth best pass defense. The Chiefs are coming off their first loss of the season, and will look to attack Rivers and the Chargers' passing game. Fantasy owners may want to consider sitting Rivers this week if they have another decent quarterback option.
Having thrown nine touchdowns over the last three games, Ben Roethlisberger is playing his best football of the season. Big Ben has been extremely inconsistent over the course of the season, and I would exercise caution in hoping that his hot streak is here to stay. The veteran quarterback faces a tough matchup against Joe Haden and the Browns' fifth ranked pass defense this week. Haden has been shutting down opposing number one wide receivers all season long, and if he can take Antonio Brown out of the game this week, Roethlisberger will struggle to put up decent fantasy numbers. Fantasy owners should look elsewhere for a starting quarterback this week.
The impressive rookie seemed to fall back behind Rashard Mendenhall in week 11, as he touched the ball ten times compared to Mendenhall's 16 touches. Ellington is excellent with the ball in space, but if he is only going to touch the ball between 10-15 times, he is an extremely risky play in all fantasy leagues. Ellington has the potential to break a big play or two in any game, but when he cannot get into open space, he will turn in very poor fantasy games, as he did in week 11. I would only start Ellington if you are desperate for a high risk, high reward option in week 12.
Coming off a two touchdown performance against the Cheifs, is it finally time to get Montee Ball into fantasy lineups? My advice would be to leave Ball on fantasy benches this week until he proves that he is here to stay as a goal-line threat and consistent fantasy starter. Knowshon Moreno will continue to get a large majority of the touches out of the Broncos backfield, making Ball's fantasy value almost completely dependant on him finding the endzone. This is a high risk, high reward proposition for fantasy owners, a gamble that I would not be willing to take unless I was in a desperate situation. Fantasy owners should keep the rookie running back on their benches until he starts getting more work.
Tavon Austin made his biggest fantasy impact of his young career in week ten, catching two touchdown passes for 138 yards, while also finding the endzone on a long punt return. The electric rookie was picked up in many fantasy leagues after this game, but I would not recommend starting him until he starts seeing the field more on offense. Despite his big fantasy numbers in week ten, Austin played just 15 snaps on offense, a number that will not lead to fantasy success in the future. Fantasy owners should not take the gamble on Austin this week.