Fantasy Football Week 11: Baltimore Ravens You Should Start and Sit This Week

Jon Reid@@JonReidCSMCorrespondent IINovember 16, 2012

BALTIMORE, MD - NOVEMBER 11: Running back Ray Rice #27 of the Baltimore Ravens rushes past linebacker Miles Burris #56 of the Oakland Raiders in the second quarter at M&T Bank Stadium on November 11, 2012 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Patrick Smith/Getty Images

It's Week 11 of the NFL season.

With over half the season in the books, the Baltimore Ravens sit atop the AFC North division with a 7-2 record, one game ahead of their arch rival Pittsburgh Steelers.

Coincidentally, the Ravens will head to Heinz Field this Sunday night for a primetime showdown against Pittsburgh.

So if you're an owner of a Raven or two when it comes to fantasy football, is it wise to start them this week?

Let's take a look at whether you should start or sit some of the Ravens' best fantasy players.

Joe Flacco

Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco has had his issues this season on the road.

In fact, Flacco has averaged just 180 yards per game away from Baltimore and averages less than a touchdown per road outing. He's also throwing an average of one interception per game when he's not playing at M&T Bank Stadium.

Couple that with the fact that Pittsburgh has, by far, the best pass defense in the league this season, allowing just 171 yards per game and 5.9 yards per attempt, and you've got an easy decision when it comes to benching Joe Flacco.

Despite his monster game against the Raiders last week, all signs point to sitting him in fantasy in Week 11.

Torrey Smith and Anquan Boldin

Thanks in large part to Joe Flacco's road woes, both Smith and Boldin have been mediocre at best on the road.

In eight combined road games, Boldin and Smith have broken the 10 point plateau just once in non point-per-reception leagues (Torrey Smith put up 10.6 points in Week 9 in Cleveland).

With the Steelers having such a tough pass defense, Boldin is an easy sit, while Smith is a bit more of a wild card since it only takes one long ball from Flacco to make his fantasy week a success.

Ray Rice

As if anyone needs to be told, Ray Rice is a must-start. This week and every week he's playing.

While the Steelers may have the top pass defense and the sixth best run defense, Rice is a lock for at least 10 points week-in and week-out.

This season, he's only had two games where he's finished with less than 10 points (one of which he finished with a respectable 9.6).

He's Joe Flacco's go-to guy and is guaranteed to see the ball more than anyone else on the field.

Dennis Pitta

Ever since the first three games of the season, in which Dennis Pitta averaged over 10 points per week, the Ravens tight end's fantasy production has dropped off substantially.

Sure, he may have had over 12 points last week, but it was the first time since Week 3 that he had posted more than 3.3 fantasy points.

If Pitta is still on your roster right now (I'm talking to all the Ravens homers out there), don't run the risk of starting him this week.

Keep him on your bench, or better yet, just drop him altogether.

Ravens Defense

It's been a long year for Baltimore on the defensive side of the ball.

Their once-famous run defense has collapsed and the Ravens are now 26th in the league in that department, allowing over 130 yards per game on the ground.

Fortunately for fantasy owners who rely on Baltimore's defense, this week they may be able to pull off a nice fantasy performance.

With Terrell Suggs on the pass rush and Byron Leftwich not being nearly as versatile as Ben Roethlisberger, there should be a few opportunities to sack the veteran backup.

The Steelers should also have a tougher time putting up points in their first full game without Big Ben handling the snaps.

This should be a worry-free week for owners of Baltimore's defense. They are a must start for Week 11.


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