Fantasy Friday: Week 12

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Here’s this week’s look at good and bad fantasy matchups.

Note: I try to pick less obvious players. I’m not going to tell you to play Peyton Manning or LaDainian Tomlinson or Randy Moss. No kiddin’, Sherlock.

Warning: I’m not immune to accidentally suggesting a player that might be injured and out for the week — or even the season. As much as I follow the game, mistakes can happen. If it does happen, just give me a polite jab and I’ll correct myself.

Thumbs Up

The following players should have favorable matchups this week. Their chances of success are greater due to tendencies by the opponent’s defense.


Jason Campbell, Was vs. Seattle
Campbell should be able to throw all over this Seahawks defense, who can’t stop anybody in the passing game.

Jeff Garcia, TB vs. Detroit
Good matchup against a bad Lions pass defense. Detroit has played moderately well the past few weeks so the Bucs should still see plenty of opportunities to throw the ball.

Other favorable matchups: Marc Bulger vs. Chicago, Aaron Rodgers vs. New Orleans, Jake Delhomme vs. Atlanta.

Running Backs

Warrick Dunn, TB vs. Detroit
Assuming Dunn is healthy and plays, he should have a big week against the worst run defense in the league.

Matt Forte, Chi vs. St. Louis
Expect the Bears’ offense to get back on track and Forte will undoubtedly be a big part of it.

Other favorable matchups: Reggie Bush (Q) vs. Green Bay, DeAngelo Williams vs. Atlanta, Ryan Grant vs. New Orleans.

Wide Receivers

Colts WRs, Ind vs. San Diego
Expect big numbers from the Colts’ arsenal of receivers this week against the Chargers’ league-worst pass defense.

Santana Moss, Was vs. Seattle
The Seahawks have one of the worst psas defenses in the league and Moss should have a big game.

Other favorable matchups: Donnie Avery vs. Chicago, Packers WRs vs. New Orleans, Bernard Berrian vs. Jacksonville.

Tight Ends

Bo Scaife, Ten vs. NY Jets
The Jets can’t defend the pass well and will probably be focusing on the Titans’ tough run game. Scaife could have a big game.

Greg Olsen, Chi vs. St. Louis
The Bears’ offense should get back on track this week against a Rams pass defense that is among the worst in the league.

Other favorable matchups: Dallas Clark vs. San Diego, Chris Cooley vs. Seattle, Donald Lee vs. New Orleans.


Matt Bryant, TB vs. Detroit
Bryant leads the league in field goals made and he faces one of the worst defenses in the league this week. The only thing to fear is extra points.

Stephen Gostkowski, NE vs. Miami
In a tough divisional matchup, there could be plenty of field goal chances for Gostkowski.

Other favorable matchups: John Carney vs. Arizona, Mason Crosby vs. New Orleans, Jason Elam (Q) vs. Carolina.


Chicago Bears, Chi vs. St. Louis
I can’t imagine the Bears playing any worse than they have. This is a game they could get some turnovers and possibly score some points and St. Louis has the third-lowest scoring offense in the league.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers, TB vs. Detroit
The Bucs can play solid defense and they have a weak team waiting for them this weekend.

Other favorable matchups: Denver Broncos vs. Oakland, Washington Redskins vs. Seattle, Minnesota Vikings vs. Jacksonville.

Thumbs Down

The following players should have unfavorable matchups this week. Their chances of success are worse due to tendencies by the opponent’s defense.


Matt Ryan, Atl vs. Carolina
The rookie faces the fifth-best pass defense in what should be a physical divisional game.

Brett Favre, NYJ vs. Tennessee
The old man could be in for a rude awakening this week against a tough Titans pass defense.

Other unfavorable matchups: Donovan McNabb vs. Baltimore, Philip Rivers vs. Indianapolis, Matt Hasselbeck vs. Washington.

Running Backs

Maurice Jones-Drew, Jac
Jones-Drew may have a bigger impact in the pass game than in the run game against the Vikings’ No. 2 run defense.

Tim Hightower, Ari vs. NY Giants
Hightower not only had a worse game than J.J. Arrington last week, but he’ll likely face stiff competition this week against the Giants.

Other unfavorable matchups: Titans RBs vs. NY Jets, Brandon Jacobs vs. Arizona, Thomas Jones vs. Tennessee.

Wide Receivers

Steve Breaston, Ari vs. NY Giants
Even after Anquan Boldin returned from injury, Breaston was making big contributions, but last week he had just 2 catches and this week he faces the No. 2 pass defense.

Lance Moore, NO vs. Green Bay
Moore has been quite a surprise this year, but this game against the Packers has the makings of a game that Marques Colston might get more looks in because of how dominant the Packers secondary is this season.

Other unfavorable matchups: Michael Jenkins vs. Carolina, DeSean Jackson vs. Baltimore, Vincent Jackson vs. Indianapolis.

Tight Ends

John Carlson, Sea vs. Washington
One of the Seahawks’ top receiving threats, he could have a stiff challenge this week against the Redskins’ defense.

Anthony Fasano, Mia vs. New England
Fasano has basically been phased out of the Dolphins’ offense after beginning the season with such promise.

Other unfavorable matchups: L.J. Smith vs. Baltimore, Tony Scheffler vs. Oakland, Kevin Boss vs. Arizona.


Josh Scobee, Jac vs. Minnesota
Scobee has slipped to 22nd in the league in field goals made, so the reliable kicker isn’t getting a lot of opportunities.

Neil Rackers, Ari vs. NY Giants
Normally an explosive offense, the Cardinals may have a difficult time getting into field goal range for Rackers.

Other unfavorable matchups: Joe Nedney vs. Dallas, Josh Brown vs. Chicago, Jay Feely vs. Tennessee.


New York Giants, NYG vs. Arizona
The Giants face the second-highest scoring offense in the league.

Arizona Cardinals, Ari vs. NY Giants
Surprise, surprise, the Cardinals face the highest-scoring offense in the league. This could be a big shootout.

Other unfavorable matchups: New Orleans Saints vs. Green Bay, San Diego Chargers vs. Indianapolis, Atlanta Falcons vs. Carolina.

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