1:33 pm, December 7th, 2012
We already told you your
best defensive plug-and-play options as you march into the pretend football playoffs. Now, Scott Engel’s here with a set of players you’re going to want to avoid like the plague if you seek to make any sort of dent in your opening round playoff matchup.
Don’t start these guys.
1.1. Ben Roethlisberger
He is returning to action and can pump some life into the Pittsburgh passing game, but other upside options have emerged. Use Andrew Luck or Colin Kaepernick instead.
2.2. Jake Locker
The Colts defense does look vulnerable. But Locker has been very erratic and unreliable in his starts this year, so he's a no-go.
3.3. Darren Sproles
This only applies if you play in a non-PPR league. Sproles has been getting little to no work as a ballcarrier this year, and he's not been dependable in yard production.
4.4. Beanie Wells
He is battling a knee issue, and the Cardinals have QB issues that won’t help him get into position for scores this week at Seattle. He shouldn't even be considered as a flex this week.
5.5. Montell Owens
He is the latest starting RB for the depleted Jaguars, but he's too unproven to risk using in a critical Fantasy playoff game. Owens is scrappy and tough, and the matchup is appealing against the Jets, but he's an unproven commodity. Don't use him yet.
6.6. Alex Green
He is now the sole starter at RB for the Packers, with James Starks likely done for the year. But Green has been just awful when asked to handle more of a workload, and the team has openly admitted he has not done well when needed to carry more. 3.3 YPC does not a fantasy starter make.
7.7. Justin Blackmon
Cecil Shorts (concussion) may not play, so Blackmon will likely draw Antonio Cromartie in coverage. The Jets CB has been pretty much a shutdown cover guy this year, and Blackmon has been up and down in his rookie campaign.
8.8. Larry Fitzgerald
The Seahawks have lost Brandon Browner to a suspension, but they will still retain three quarters of a very good secondary this week. Fitzgerald is struggling through the worst season of his career.
9.9. Jeremy Maclin
You may be tempted to use him because he faces a very vulnerable Tampa Bay pass defense. Don't.
10.10. Antonio Gates
His run as a top Fantasy tight end is officially over. Gates has sunk lower statistically than ever before, and you should cut him if you need to make room for another player at his position. Forget his name value, you can’t start him anymore.
11.11. Jared Cook
He has been nothing but unfulfilled hype over the past two years. You may be struggling to find TE help, and a lot of owners are, but you can certainly find better options, even at the lower levels of the free agent list.
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