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NFL Week 6 Bengals vs. Steelers: Fantasy starts and sits

Who you should start and sit in fantasy when the Bengals and Steelers face off.

Wild Card Round - Pittsburgh Steelers v Cincinnati Bengals Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

The Bengals and Steelers are set to have a very important divisional matchup, but even more importantly is your fantasy team. Luckily, both of these teams love giving up fantasy points to opposing teams.

Here are the players to start when the Bengals host the Steelers:

Must start

  • A.J. Green (Bengals WR): Green had his first 100-yard receiving game of the season last week against the Dolphins. He has five touchdowns on the season, and he was targeted in the red zone again last week. The Steelers also give up the fourth most points to opposing receivers, according to Fantasy Pros. Don’t think twice, keep Green in your lineup.
  • Antonio Brown (Steelers WR): William Jackson smothered Brown last year, but the Steelers should find plenty of opportunities to find Brown on Dre Kirkpatrick. It is a matter of Ben Roethlisberger hitting him. It still just isn’t smart to not start Brown.

Favorable Matchups

  • Tyler Boyd (Bengals WR): Following the trend of the Steelers giving up a ton of points to opposing receivers, Boyd should be in line for a pretty productive PPR game. This is assuming John Ross is active as well. Boyd has proven to be a talented asset to this team either way, but if the opposing defense has to worry about Green and Ross as well, Boyd becomes pretty much unstoppable.
  • James Conner (Steelers RB): Surprisingly Conner has been a pretty big boom or bust player so far this season. Twice he has managed to get over 100 yards rushing and two touchdowns in a game, but he has also failed to rush for at least 20 yards twice as well. The Bengals have allowed just over 20 fantasy points per game to opposing running backs, which has them allowing the 10th most.
  • Joe Mixon (Bengals RB): I toyed with putting Mixon in good but not great, but the amount the Bengals use Mixon elevates him pretty comfortably. He will be facing a Steelers’ defense that allows the fifth fewest fantasy points to opposing running backs, so there is reason to be cautious. Regardless, he was on track for two big games against the Steelers last year before Cincinnati stopped giving him the ball in the first game and he suffered a concussion in the second.
  • Andy Dalton (Bengals QB): Dalton should be pretty much owned in every league at this point, but he may have been dropped after a disappointing game last week against the Dolphins going into a game against Pittsburgh. Outside of last week he has thrown at least two touchdowns in every game so far this season, and the Steelers have allowed the second most points to opposing quarterbacks so far this season.

Good but not great

  • Steelers tight ends: Whether it is Jesse James or Vance McDonald, one or both of these guys should be heavily involved against the Bengals. James has only caught four passes the past three weeks though, and McDonald has caught six passes in the past two weeks since his huge game against the Bucs. It isn’t ideal to rely on either of these guys, but the position is in a terrible place as far as fantasy goes.
  • C.J. Uzomah (Bengals TE): With there being no Tylers at tight end this week with Tyler Kroft in a walking boot, Uzomah should be in line for all the work he can handle at tight end. Unfortunately, the same could’ve been said about last week’s game since he played a majority of the snaps, but he only came away with two catches.
  • Ben Roethlisberger (Steelers QB): Roethlisberger’s been known to struggle on the road, but we all know he’s almost always won in Cincinnati. This year he had a three-touchdown game against the Bucs, but seriously who doesn’t burn the Bucs at this point? Against the Browns he only had on touchdown in Week 1, but weather was a huge issue as well. In any case, I’d be willing to say he doesn’t have a two touchdown game against the Bengals, which is what you are looking for from a starter, but there are worse bets to make.
  • JuJu Smith-Schuster (Steelers WR): At this point it looks like Smith-Schuster burns bad defenses. He had 22 catches for 237 and a touchdown against the Bucs and Chiefs. However, he only has eight catches for 94 yards and a touchdown the past two weeks. He is very capable of ending up with a touchdown in any game, but I have a hard time viewing him as more than a flex this week.

Just sit them

  • The defenses: Both defenses are likely to get burned fairly bad one way or the other. Neither offense is especially prone to committing turnovers either. There should be better options on your waiver wire, but if you put a gun to my head I’d take the Bengals defense just because they have shown that knack for coming up with sacks and turnovers in key situations.