Start 'Em, Sit 'Em Week 10: How to Handle Inconsistent Performers This Weekend

Patrick ClarkeCorrespondent INovember 6, 2013

OAKLAND, CA - NOVEMBER 03:  Nick Foles #9 of the Philadelphia Eagles warms up during pre-game warm ups prior to playing the Oakland Raiders at Coliseum on November 3, 2013 in Oakland, California.  (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

With Thursday Night Football fast approaching, fantasy football owners are running out of time to set their lineups for Week 10.

Bye weeks and injuries this time of year always add to the challenge, but the ability to discover key trends and favorable matchups is the perfect antidote. 

Below, I'll examine some inconsistent fantasy performers and break down the best way to handle them this weekend.

*Scoring statistics according to ESPN Fantasy.


Nick Foles, Philadelphia Eagles, QB

Average Points: 11.0

Week 10 Opponent: Green Bay Packers

Let's face it: Nick Foles isn't going to toss seven touchdown passes against the Green Bay Packers in Week 10. But the surging quarterback will be a must-start this weekend against a suspect Packers secondary.

After all, Green Bay gave up 272 yards and two touchdowns to Bears backup Josh McCown in Week 9.

While you shouldn't anticipate Foles to come anywhere close to last week's epic point total, you can start the second-year signal-caller with confidence knowing he should be good for at least 250 yards and a pair of touchdowns. 

Fantasy Play: Start 

PlayerAverage PointsWeek 10 OpponentFantasy Play
Jake Locker, Titans11.9JaguarsStart
Christian Ponder, Vikings8.8RedskinsStart
Case Keenum, Texans5.1CardinalsStart
Terrelle Pryor, Raiders13.5GiantsSit
Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins12.6BuccaneersSit
ESPN Fantasy


DeMarco Murray, Dallas Cowboys, RB

ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 22:  Running back DeMarco Murray #29 of the Dallas Cowboys carries the ball during the game against the St. Louis Rams at AT&T Stadium on September 22, 2013 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Average Points: 8.3

Week 10 Opponent: New Orleans Saints

The Dallas Cowboys ran the ball just nine times in Week 9's last-minute win over the Minnesota Vikings, and starting running back DeMarco Murray, who returned after missing two games with a knee injury, was responsible for only four of those carries. 

Murray caught six balls for 19 yards, but still finished with just four fantasy points in standard scoring leagues.

Fortunately for Murray owners, the Cowboys will be in New Orleans in Week 10. And although the Saints have been much-improved defensively in 2013, they remain suspect against the run. New Orleans ranks 25th in fewest rushing yards allowed and is surrendering nearly five yards per carry through eight games.

While Murray has really only had one big game this season (Week 3 vs. St. Louis), the potential is certainly there for another big-time performance this weekend.

Fantasy Play: Start  

Running Back
PlayerAverage PointsWeek 10 OpponentFantasy Play
Fred Jackson, Bills11.4SteelersStart
Ryan Mathews, Chargers7.6BroncosStart
Rashad Jennings, Raiders5.4GiantsStart
Joique Bell, Lions8.6BearsSit
Ray Rice, Ravens5.8BengalsSit
ESPN Fantasy


Marlon Brown, Baltimore Ravens, WR

Average Points: 7.4

Week 10 Opponent: Cincinnati Bengals 

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Marlon Brown exploded for 19 fantasy points in Week 9, catching two touchdowns in the reigning Super Bowl champions' loss at Cleveland. 

But don't buy into Brown's big day too much. Last week marked the first time since Week 2 that Brown scored more than double-digit fantasy points. Plus, prior to last week, Brown hadn't caught a touchdown pass since Week 4 against Buffalo.

In Week 10, the undrafted rookie is likely to struggle against a Cincinnati Bengals secondary that has allowed just 11 touchdowns through the air in nine games. The Bengals are also 11th in fewest passing yards allowed in 2013. 

For extremely desperate fantasy owners, Brown certainly wouldn't be the worst play at the flex spot, but otherwise, try to avoid starting him this weekend. 

Fantasy Play: Sit

Wide Receiver
PlayerAverage PointsWeek 10 OpponentFantasy Play
Eric Decker, Broncos10.0ChargersStart
Hakeem Nicks, Giants6.3RaidersStart
Greg Jennings, Vikings6.0RedskinsStart
Cecil Shorts, Jaguars7.6TitansSit
Harry Douglas, Falcons7.1SeahawksSit
ESPN Fantasy


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