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Welcome to week 12 everyone. This is where I usually lament the speediness in which the NFL season has flown by but I’ll try to refrain (as I type through the uncontrollable sobbing) and get straight to the fantasy footballness. We are so close to the fake football playoffs that we can taste it and today’s games are pretty darn important for a lot of us (and taste a little garlicky). It’s do or die! Raaagh!! Ok, you’ll probably live, seeing how this is “fake” football, but it still sucks to lose, so let’s do this!

I’ll throw some names out there that I like for this week and then link you up to some stuff I’ve been reading. Take a look see and best of luck to all your teams!

I’m looking forward to Sunday’s games since I missed many of them last week while going all East Bound and Down Jerry Reed style. But thankfully my butt groove is still intact and I feel like I can get right back into it Stella style.

Here are some guys I think won’t suck too bad:

Vince Young: The quarterbacks that have passed for over 300 yards against the Patriots are many. And those that have thrown less than 300 yards are few. Mark Sanchez, Eli Manning and Tyler Palko are the 3 that haven’t. Of course no QB has thrown over 2 touchdowns against them either. Many of the yards come after the Patriots get a lead and the opponent needs to pass often but the Patriots pass defense is in shambles. Vince Young will most likely get 250+ yards passing and 1-2 touchdowns. Not a huge number but the upside for more is certainly there if Brady and company can get a lead and get them in even more pass mode than usual.

Brandon Lloyd: The Glendale Cardinals love to give up big yardage to #1 wide receivers. Well, maybe not love, but they do it anyway for some reason. Last week was Michael Crabtree for 120 yards. They’ve also given up big yards to Lloyd himself with 80 yards, Anquan Boldin 145, Mike Wallace 118, Antonio Brown 102, Devin Aromashodu 81, Hakeem Nicks 162, Victor Cruz 98, Sidney Rice 109 and Steve Smith 179. Lloyd leads the league in targets since he became a Ram and should have a big game.

Brandon LaFell: It looks pretty likely that Legedu Naanee will be out against Indianapolis and the Colts have been dreadful against the pass (32nd in DVOA to WR2 as well). The only reason they don’t give up a billion yards passing per game is because no teams need to score that many when the Colts offense is about as putrid as their defense. LaFell is a much more talented receiver than Naanee but Naanee is more seasoned and the coaches rather have him out there with rookie Cam Newton. But as far as making catches LaFell can do that much better and as long as Naanee is out I really like LaFell to LaBeAmesome this week.

Chris Johnson: And your sleeper play of the week is Chris Johnson! Well, more like it’s ok to start him even though he sucks oh so bad because Tampa Bay is worse than him. They have faced some good running backs of late but have just been decimated by them and they’ve been giving up a lot of receiving yards to running backs and Johnson has been at least getting work in the receiving game. He’s not going to hit the holes hard like he has in the past but should have enough room to roam in the passing game.

Rashard Mendenhall: The Steelers have gone to a pass heavy attack which has hurt Mendhenhall who has averaged 5 yards a carry on carries 21 through 25 for his career. He has only topped 20 carries once this season and went for 143 yards that game. On Sunday night there is a decent chance we’ll see Mendenhall get more carries.  With the Chiefs still being led by Tyler Palko they will have trouble scoring and the Steelers may want to limit Ben Roethlisberger with his thumb fracture.

Kevin Boss: Carson Palmer is proving his worth but Jacoby Ford and Denarius Moore are hurting and the Bears have given up a league high 8 touchdowns to tight ends. This leads me to believe Boss will get his shot this week.

Hot Links:

Make sure you play our Week 12 Lineup Challenge for a chance at a My Playbook Season Pass from Fantasy Pros and a bad ass Razzball Sonuvabench! Mug.

Jeff Brubach and I have been trying our hand at podcasting. You can check us out here.

Join me in this 20 team FanDuel League

If you lost Jahvid Best or Fred Jackson maybe grab one of these guys if they are available.

There are only a handful to maybe two handfuls of good quarterbacks out there and the rest are either too old, too young or too crappy. Let’s take a look at them shall we?

I’m not a Tebow hater and I think a quarterback can help his team win games in other ways than pure passing but I just don’t see how he can stay healthy in the NFL without more of a passing threat. Of course I could be wrong and often am. It will be interesting to see what happens. Here are a couple articles looking at his stats: A Statistical Analysis of the Miracles of Tim Tebow and Tim Tebow and the Narrative Fallacy is a great look at why Tebowmania has gotten a tad out of control.

The Cold Hard Football Facts look at all of today’s games.

Fantasy-o-Matic takes a look at some guys who might be able to help you in the fantasy playoffs.

Hot Stats:

Here are some links to some free stat services I use to wrap my brain around some of this stuff. Take a look.

NFL.com is an obvious one but it is a good one. In fantasy matchup research we often rely on stats for defenses because that’s what our players are facing each week. Here are the stats for defenses against the rush.

I often like to look at situational and split stats for players. Like the Mendenhall note above about how he does in carries 21-25 in a game which I found at Yahoo here.

The stats I like the most are those that help narrow down how individual positions fare against defenses. Say you want to know what the worst defense against tight ends is or who gives up the most fantasy points to kickers? There are quite a few sources for this. Here are a few: CBS Sports, ESPN, FFToday, and KFFL. You need to sign up for KFFL but it’s free and worth it. They are much more customizable/sortable than the others and also have target stats.

I mentioned this one in a game day post before but ESPN updates their stats very quickly on game days which include targets.

Football Outsiders has some nice free info looking at their DVOA stats on the season against individual positions (scroll down) which I love.

Team Rankings has a ton of team stats. They are similar to NFL.com’s but are more extensive.

The following source won’t help too much in your day to day fake football needs but I just found it and am looking forward to digging in. It’s the Play Index Tool at Pro Football Reference. If you have any statistical question about NFL history you’ll find it here.

These are just a few that are out there and even though I hate paying for stuff here are a couple pay sites that I like quite a bit, Pro Football Focus and Football Guys. They have a ton of awesome stats. And if you have any that you really like put them in the comments. I’m always looking for more.

  1. Jake says:
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    I’m fairly certain that I got a virus from your site earlier today. I was only on yahoo football and here on football.razzball when my computer was overrun by one of those BS antivirus malwares. Please check your advertisers…

  2. Oilcan Giuseppe says:
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    Doc:in ppr AND non ppr,who would you start at flex….Donald Brown or Manningham?

  3. Nico says:
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    Non PPR 6 for passing league: Big Ben or Eli and Spiller or Julio in my flex?

  4. Scott says:
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    .5 ppr – need to fill flex spot and 2 WRs from:

    S. Greene, S-Jax, D. Sproles, Julio Jones, Manningham, Cruz, Garcon, M. Williams (South)

    Thanks

  5. DDT says:
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    Doctor, Tebow or Big Ben and his bad thumb?

  6. tourinct says:
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    Morning Doc. Mathews or Spiller? .5 ppr

  7. exactly says:
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    @Jake: Yeah, I was at work and got malware on the computer twice, and I think it was from this site…now everyone thinks i’m looking at porn.

  8. tourinct says:
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    One more por favor.. non ppr need 2 of McGehee, McKnight, Helu and Hillis.

  9. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @tourinct: McGahee and Helu

  10. genghis chone says:
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    Julio Jones or Antonio Brown? PPR, need a big week

  11. mt says:
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    as always great info…I have a problem, start which RB Gerhart, D. Will, or Tate? ummm? help thanks…

  12. Kevin says:
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    ppr ryan mathews or cj spiller

  13. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @mt: That is a tough one for sure. Gerhart will see the most looks so is safer there but the other 2 have more upside depending on their touches. I’d lean Tate because with Leinart in they should run a lot.

  14. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @Kevin: Mathews

  15. Kevin says:
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    PPR 3rd Wr spot. Who do i go with here:
    Simpson Wayne Moore Doucet
    Thanks

  16. Kevin says:
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    ^thats Denarius sorry

  17. Randy04 says:
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    Which DEF/ST would you go with in a league with scoring based on yards/points allowed, turnovers, return yardage, and DEF/ST TDs? Cardinals, Panthers, Broncos, or Raiders? Thanks!

  18. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @Kevin: I’d lean Simpson with moore hurting

    @Randy04: Panthers

  19. Jeff says:
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    Need to start 1 of these players to give me some hope at a playoff shot next week:

    Damiam Williams, Riley Cooper, Montario Hardesty, Denarius Moore, Stevie Johsnon.

    I appreciate all the help!

  20. Eng says:
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    Start Lefell or Sid Rice?

  21. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @Jeff: Cooper

    @Eng: LaFell

  22. Scott says:
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    .5 ppr – need to fill flex spot and 2 WRs from:

    S. Greene, S-Jax, D. Sproles, Julio Jones, Manningham, Cruz, Garcon, M. Williams (South)

    Thanks

  23. Eng says:
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    Thanks!

  24. Nuke LaDouche says:
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    Stevie Johnson, Santana Moss, or LaFell?

  25. Nuke LaDouche says:
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    oh in a PPR. Thanks!

  26. friar says:
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    Hey Doc. Which two would you pick out of Mathews, Hillis, Gerhart, and Ingram? Thanks!

  27. matt says:
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    Hi Doc

    Addai or Tolbert this week in a Nonppr?

  28. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @friar: Mathews, Gerhart

    @matt: Tough, leaning Tolbert

  29. nick m. says:
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    Hammered by injuries and trying to make the playoffs – 12 team PPR, need to fill (2) spots with which of the following players: C.J. Spiller, Gerhart, Riley Cooper, Damian Williams?

  30. Howie says:
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    @Doc: non-PPRs–

    The now active Julio or Damian W.?

    Two from this foursome– AJ, Percy, Lloyd, Antonio B.?

    Thanks.

  31. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    @Doc: who do you like better today Andre Johnson or Loyd

  32. Doc

    Doc says:
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    “Fouts on Fantasy Football Today: Tolbert to start, Mathews will be limited. He met w/ Norv last night. He would know.”

    I’d downgrade Mathews.

    @nick m.: Dang, that is really tough. Going with the RBs in PPR. Think they’ll get some catches.

    @Howie: Julio, Lloyd, AJ

  33. matt says:
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    Hillis or s Greene in ppr? Thanks

  34. Jeffito says:
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    I’m in a bit of a pickle (Bread and butter, not dill). Need to start one guy in a PPR league…. and they all sort of seem the same to me. Spiller, Gerhart, McKnight…. hell I could even throw in Pierre Thomas .. waddya think?

  35. Jim Parkey says:
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    Doctor, I just read Tolbert to start (Mathews will be limited). Start Tolbert over either McGahee or Wells?

  36. D Fresh says:
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    6pts td, 3pts 100+yds

    ingram, spiller, or tate

  37. nick m. says:
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    Thanks! How about (2) spots in another PPR league with these players: Beanie Wells, Andre Johnson, C.J. Spiller?

  38. D Fresh says:
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    6pts td, 3pts 100+yds

    andre johnson or jimmy graham

  39. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @D Fresh: Graham is safer with Leinart in now.

  40. Oilcan Giuseppe says:
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    Doc:ppr flex….J. Stewart or Julio?

  41. Steve says:
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    Each sunday, you know… good morning. Freeman or Ponder? Read about heavy rain @Titans. Is it scary enough to bench Freeman?

  42. Eddie says:
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    Hating my options at flex: Jermaine Gresham or Toby Gerhart? Gresham has actually been decent at getting in the end zone but would you go with the guaranteed touches in Gerhart (even in a really tough matchup)?

  43. D Fresh says:
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    Thanks Doc!

  44. timSTi says:
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    @Doc: Beanie, Blount, or McGahee? . 5ppr. Thanks!

  45. AL KOHOLIC says:
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    @Doc: thanks

  46. Nick says:
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    @Doc: Hey Doc, looking towards the ROS with Tebow & Sanchez (backup) as my QB’s in a 1QB 10-team league, would you drop Sanchez for Flacco (good week 14/15 matchup), Moore (good week 15/16 matchup), Dalton or Leinart? As long as Tebow is the starter in Denver, I have a feeling he will be my starter regardless (as much as I dislike him)…

    Also with Best out for the season (I have Kevin Smith already) would you go with Baldwin, Burleson, Breaston, Simpson, Torain (I have Helu) or Addai as a replacement? Or I could wait till tomorrow and see how today pans out…

  47. Nick says:
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    Hey Doc, you can add Colt McCoy to that list of available QB’s, he has 2 touchdowns in the first half against a tough Cincy Defense!

  48. Nick says:
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    Actually scratch that, I see he plays Baltimore & Pitt twice (4 games) for the ROS…thats not a friendly schedule

  49. barker says:
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    start one wr3 manningham vin brown decker

  50. Doc

    Doc says:
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    @barker: Tough call since we don’t know if Manny will play. I’d lean Brown.

  51. Nick says:
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    @DOC: Sanchez with 4th TD of the day!!! Negate everything I said, I think i’d rather hold Sanchez then dump him for Dalton, Flacco, or Moore…

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