To open up this week’s fantasy starts and sits, it is time for a friendly reminder about Thursday football games and your fantasy team. Since it is Thanksgiving, that means we will have the most Thursday games of the season, which means you may have multiple players in your lineup playing early.
What should you do with those players? Keep them out of whatever flex spots your league has. You will have to commit to playing these guys well before you know if any of your other players will be in or out on Sunday. If you use your flex spot on Thursday, that means on Sunday if you have to replace a wide receiver who isn’t playing, you won’t be able to toss in a running back (or tight end if your league rolls like that). So rather than having most of your bench available to replace that player, you would be forced to replace that wide receiver with another wide receiver.
Do yourself a favor and be safe rather than sorry, leave your flex spots open.
Le’Veon Bell, RB, Jets: Bengals fans are very familiar with Bell running over their team’s defense. Bell has been very up and down all season, which has to be frustrating for fantasy players who took him. Cincinnati has been better about stopping running backs recently in fantasy, but they still are a very tasty matchup for opposing running backs. If the Jets are smart enough to get Bell isolated in coverage with Nick Vigil he could ave a huge day.
D.J. Chark, WR, Jaguars: Nick Foles is back in at quarterback for the Jaguars. That hasn’t entirely derailed Chark’s value. Over two games Chark has had 21 targets from Foles. He had over 100 receiving yards and two touchdowns against the Colts. Last week he had a more mild game with only 38 yards on five catches, but this week he is facing the Bucs. Tampa Bay allows four more fantasy points to opposing wide receivers per game than any other defense, according to Fantasy Pros, and it really just doesn’t get much better than that.
Nick Foles, QB, Jaguars: The Bucs give up the second-most points per game to opposing quarterbacks, and their run defense is pretty stout. That means we could see plenty of volume from Foles in a great matchup. I’d start him over guys you are shaky about starting due to a rough matchup.
Panthers’ defense against Washington
Jaguars defense against Bucs
Jets defense against Bengals
Will Fuller, WR, Texans: Fuller had a great game back last week on Thursday Night Football, but he faces the Patriots stout pass defense this week. He is pretty much going to be a boom or bust play as there is a chance the Patriots sellout on stopping DeAndre Hopkins, but the Patriots have allowed the fewest points to opposing wide receivers all season, and they have barely allowed any receivers to even reach 70 yards against them this year.
Mark Ingram, RB, Ravens: Ingram is either up or down week-to-week based on how defenses play Lamar Jackson at quarterback. He has had incredible fantasy weeks, and others he hardly even show up. This week he is facing a 49ers defense that just shutdown the Packers’ offense and allows the third fewest points to opposing running backs. Sitting him may be hard considering how high his ceiling can be week-to-week, but just realize his floor is incredibly low this week.
Devonta Freeman, RB, Falcons: Right now, Freeman is questionable for his game on Thanksgiving against the Saints. He is on schedule to play his first game since suffering a foot injury, and facing the worst team to try and come back and make a splash on offense against. New Orleans only allows 12.9 fantasy points per game to opposing running backs. That is the fourth worst matchup a running back could face. Freeman was already having a rough season before the injury, and the Falcons may even limit how much he is used fresh off recovery on a short week. No need to have Freeman in your lineup.