Week 11 Start 'Em, Sit 'Em: Aaron Hernandez and More Elite Second-String Options

Michael DixonAnalyst IIINovember 18, 2011

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 6:   Aaron Hernandez #81 of the New England Patriots scores against the defense of  Kenny Phillips #21 of the New York Giants at Gillette Stadium in the second half on November 6, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

Normally, second-string players aren't great fantasy plays unless there is an injury to the starter that takes him out of action.

But that's not always the case. Sometimes, a second-string player has more value than starters on many other teams. 

That's the case with these players. Even though they aren't the first names that come to mind when you think of their position and team, they are good plays this week. 

If they are available in your league, claim them.


Aaron Hernandez

The No. 1 option at tight end for the Patriots is clearly Rob Gronkowski. Still, behind Wes Welker and Gronkowski, Hernandez is Tom Brady's third-best receiving option. 

When you consider the quarterback and how much they pass, being the No. 3 option is not a bad thing.

This week, they are locked up against a Chiefs team that is quite frankly not that good. The Patriots will move the ball well and will have plenty of chances to score. With that, Hernandez will be a great play.


Kendall Hunter

It seems as though Frank Gore will play in this one, but logic would say that the 49ers will be conservative with him. Even an upset loss doesn't really hurt them that much, as they would still be at least a game ahead of the No. 3 seed in the NFC in the fight for the first-round playoff bye.

When you consider that they will be on a short week, as their Week 12 game is a cross-country Thursday game against a very good Ravens team, you would have to think that Gore will be used sparingly.

That's where Hunter enters the picture. He's already shown that he's capable of big plays this year. 

Against the Cardinals, Hunter is a great play.


John Kuhn

Here me out on this one. First of all, how many people think that the Packers offense will be shut down this weekend against the Buccaneers? There may be a defense out there that can at least limit the Packers, but it's not the Buccaneers.

The Buccaneers have a terrible run defense. So, in short-yardage situations inside of the 5-yard line, Kuhn's power makes him a great play.

Also, as we saw last week, he's a capable pass catcher, which is gravy. Kuhn is certainly a gamble in fantasy. His overall skills don't really translate to fantasy as much as in the actual game. 

But I like him to find the end zone this week and to be used a little more often to go at the Buccaneers' poor front.

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