NFL Week 13 Start 'Em, Sit 'Em: Sunday Morning Decisions

Eric StashinSenior Writer IDecember 4, 2011

LANDOVER, MD - NOVEMBER 20: DeMarco Murray #29 of the Dallas Cowboys carries the ball against London Fletcher #59 of the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field on November 20, 2011 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

Just hours before the start of Week 13, I know many people have questions running through their heads. Who should I start? Who should I sit?

Let’s take a look at how some of the recent news changes things:


DeMarco Murray – Dallas Cowboys – Running Back

Obviously you aren’t going to sit him this week, but his stock could quickly be falling.  Just look at these numbers from Tim MacMahon of ESPN Dallas (click here for the article):

Just take a quick look at the rushing numbers with and without Fiammetta. The Cowboys average 145.8 rushing yards per game and 5.6 per carry when Fiammetta plays, 85.6 yards and 3.2 per carry when he doesn’t.

Could another poor game send him to fantasy benches? 

I know all of his owners are going to be keeping a close eye on him today versus Arizona with Fiammetta out indefinitely. According to Jorge Castillo of the Newark Star-Ledger (click here for the article):

The splits are just as stunning during the games since DeMarco Murray has become the lead horse in the Cowboys’ backfield. Murray rushed for 601 yards (8.0 per carry) in four games running behind Fiammetta. Murray gained 160 yards (3.4 per carry) with Fiammetta out the last two games.


Ahmad Bradshaw – New York Giants – Running Back

Says Jorge Castillo:

For the first time since fracturing his foot against the Miami Dolphins on Oct. 30, Bradshaw practiced Friday and is listed as questionable for tomorrow. He was limited in the practice session, but that may be enough for coach Tom Coughlin, who earlier this week said practicing was a prerequisite for Bradshaw to play against the Packers.

However, should one practice really be enough to convince anyone that Bradshaw is a viable option?  It’s been over a month since we’ve seen Bradshaw take the field and he likely is going to be a game-time decision for tomorrow’s 4 PM start with the Green Bay Packers. 

Long absence + one limited practice + 4:15 start time = Fantasy benches for another week 

If Bradshaw plays or doesn’t play, Brandon Jacobs should likely be on your bench as well.  He has shown very little over the past few weeks and the Giants will probably be passing early and often to keep up with the Packers.

There’s just too big of a risk of Jacobs bringing in no points.     


Percy Harvin – Minnesota Vikings – Wide Receiver

Mark Craig of the Minneapolis Star Tribune (click here for the post) has a quote from head coach Leslie Frazier saying, ”Head athletic trainer Eric] Sugarman and his staff will give me an update when we get back in. But [Harvin] should be fine for Sunday.”

Time will tell, but with a 1 PM game against the Broncos, fantasy owners will have a resolution to the situation in time to make any adjustments.

The Broncos have allowed 19 passing touchdowns on the season (as well as 234.7 passing yards per game). With Adrian Peterson already ruled out, if Harvin is playing he is a solid WR2/FLEX option in all formats as he should see plenty of touches.

Monitor the news today, but plan on using him.


Roy Helu – Washington Redskins – Running Back

According to Chris Russell (via Twitter):

"Mike Shanahan on Roy Helu if he is ready to be a 25-carry guy on @ESPNRadio980 'I think he is right now. I think he got stronger (in Sea).'"

It sounds good in theory, but color me skeptical.  Every time we think Shanahan is ready to hand Helu the starting job it never seems to come to fruition. That, said Helu is worth the risk this week against the New York Jets.

Consider him a viable RB2 in all formats.


Josh Freeman – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Quarterback

There are reports that the team has promoted Rudy Carpenter off the practice squad, which could signify that Freeman is in trouble of missing today’s game.

He was only a mid-level play against the Carolina Panthers if healthy, so fantasy owners should be already have an alternative in place. 

Make sure to check out all of our Week 13 articles: