2023 Fantasy Football Week 12 Start Sit

by Dennis Sosic
2023 Fantasy Football Start-Sit

Welcome Fantasy friends and foes to my weekly Start and Sit advice column with the 2023 Fantasy Football Week 12 Start Sit.

Outside of suggesting to sit Trevor Lawrence, the return for the start-sit advice was triumphant. It's great to see Lawrence bounce back after a few dismal outings. I will take the L there. Regarding returns, Justin Fields made D.J. Moore fantasy-relevant again. and should continue as long as the Bears continue to trust Fields. Tank Dell continues his breakout rookie season with his rookie quarterback, C.J. Stroud.

Let's head to Week 12, where we enjoy an NFL triple-header on Thanksgiving and one game on Black Friday. Fantasy playoffs are approaching quickly, so every lineup decision carries even more weight.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone and their families. Enjoy the food, football, and being with your family. Please also enjoy the start-sit advice to help crush your leagues in the 2023 Fantasy Football Week 12 Start Sit.

2023 Fantasy Football Week 12 Start Sit

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Start-Gardner Minshew, QB, Indianapolis Colts

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MinshewMania is alive and well in Week 12! Minshew and the Indianapolis Colts return from their Week 10 bye to welcome the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to Lucas Oil Stadium.

Minshew has not set the football world on fire like he has in the past. However, he has a few shiting moments after he took over for rookie Anthony Richardson including consecutive 300-yard passing games in Weeks 6 and 7. Against one of the worst pass defenses in the league, and with the return of rookie Josh Downs, watch out for Minshew this week for another 300-yard game.

Other QBs to Start: Jordan Love, Green Bay Packers; Joshua Dobbs, Arizona Cardinals

Sit-Justin Herbert, QB, Los Angeles Chargers

Watching Justin Herbert throw is a beautiful thing to watch. However, his surrounding talent and questionable play-calling are also frustrating to watch. However, if Keenan Allen is not open, Herbert's options are limited. How can he trust anyone outside Allen and Austin Ekeler?

Despite the obstacles, Herbert is still a QB1, providing fantasy managers with some outstanding games. However, the Chargers offense has been decimated with injuries, and the replay of rookie Quentin Johnston missing that bomb at the end of their last game still makes me sick.

Herbert has a huge challenge this week when he takes on the tough Baltimore Ravens defense, which ranks as one of the top-tier defenses against the pass. If you somehow have an alternative option, this might be the look elsewhere. Herbert will probably produce numbers similar to his Week matchup against the New York Jets defense when he threw for 136 yards and zero scores. That doesn't look like a stat line you need as you fight for your fantasy playoff lives.

Other QBs to Avoid: Tua Tagovailoa, Miami Dolphins; Derek Carr, New Orleans Saints 

Running Backs

Start-Gus Edwards, RB, Baltimore Ravens

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Gus Edwards is quietly having an impressive season with ten touchdowns. Edwards has scored in five consecutive games, including multiple score efforts in three.

If things couldn't have looked any better for Edwards, fantasy managers get the gift that keeps giving in the Los Angeles Chargers run defense, who are in the bottom third in most defensive stat categories. Edwards continues his TD streak this week, producing his fifth RB1 finish this season.

Start-Jerome Ford, RB, Cleveland Browns

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The Cleveland Browns have dealt with many injuries this season on the offensive side of the ball. Their offense line has been decimated, and of course, they lost quarterback Deshaun Watson for the season.

Even Jerome Ford has been limited with an ankle injury. However, Ford has regained some of the juice he possessed earlier in the season. He ran for 107 yards against the Ravens in Week 10 and scored last week against the Steelers, so he is back to producing as the lead back in the Browns offense.

Ford and the Browns have a tantalizing matchup against the Denver Broncos this week. Although the Broncos' defense has been better of late, Ford should have another excellent fantasy day and provide RB2 numbers for fantasy managers this week.

Other RBs to Start: Kyren Williams, Los Angeles Rams; David Montgomery, Chicago Bears 

Sit-Joe Mixon, RB, Cincinnati Bengals

Although Joe Mixon has been playing great since he returned from his Week 7 bye week, it's hard to recommend him this week. The loss of Joe Burrow provides opposing defenses to double Ja'Marr Chase and stack the box. Jake Browning steps in for Burrow against the ferocious Pittsburgh Steelers defense. Their defense will make it a long day for Browning and fantasy managers with Mixon shares.

Sit-AJ Dillon, RB, Green Bay Packers

You would think AJ Dillon would be an auto-start with the news that Aaron Jones is out this week. Dillon has been quite a disappointment this season, averaging only 3.5 yards per carry and with only two touchdowns.

The Packers offense is struggling in the running game with injuries across the offensive line, but Dillon has lacked the burst we are used to seeing in the bruising back. His matchup against the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving also makes you nervous.

Other RBs to Avoid:  Javonte Williams, Denver Broncos

Wide Receivers

Start-Michael Pittman, Jr., WR, Indianapolis Colts

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Pittman has stepped up of late with three consecutive games of eight receptions. He is the main target for quarterback Gardner Minshew and will get plenty of love this week in this week's matchup against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who surrender the fourth-most fantasy points to wide receivers this season.

Pittman is an easy start in PPR leagues, although he provides minimal concern in standard leagues with only two scores on the season. The former USC standout will be number three this week against the Bucs' defense.

Start-Brandin Cooks, WR, Dallas Cowboys

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Cooks has a fantastic matchup against the Washington Commanders on Thanksgiving. He is also playing with the hottest quarterback in the league, Dak Prescott, who has thrown for thirteen touchdowns across the last four weeks, including two to Cooks. Prescott should throw for multiple touchdowns again this week, with Cooks being one of the beneficiaries.

Other WRs to Start: Courtland Sutton, Denver Broncos; Rashee Rice, Kansas City Chiefs 

Sit-Terry McLaurin, WR, Washington Commanders

Terry McLaurin is the main target for Commanders quarterback Sam Howell but has yet to provide consistent fantasy production. McLaurin has not produced a 100-yard game and has only two touchdowns this season.

The Commanders head to Dallas on Thanksgiving for a big NFC East clash this week. McLaurin will be challenged with going up against a Cowboys defense, allowing only 21.8 fantasy points per game, which is the third-fewest in the league. Give your fantasy team a break while you are eating turkey and sit McLaurin.

Sit-Courtland Sutton, WR, Denver Broncos

Courtland Sutton has been a pleasant surprise this season. Left for dead after a poor season last year, there was limited optimism for Sutton this season, even with the arrival of new quarterback Russell Wilson.

Sutton has shined to the tune of scoring in five consecutive games. He has scored in all but two weeks this season. In Week 12, the Denver Broncos welcome the Cleveland Broncos to Mile High. The Browns' defense has been the talk of the NFL and has allowed only an average of 143.7 passing yards per game. Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz finds a way to end the touchdown streak, pushing Sutton to your bench this week.

Other WRs to Avoid: Jaylen Waddle, Miami Dolphins

Tight Ends

Start-Isaiah Likely, TE, Baltimore Ravens

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The unfortunate injury to Mark Andrews opens the door for Isaiah Likely to step into a top target role for Lamar Jackson this week. Likely the Ravens offense takes on the Los Angeles Chargers defense in the bottom third versus tight ends.

He produced three TE1 finishes last season with Andrews out. Look for another top tight-end finish for Likely this week.

Other TEs to Start: Tyler Higbee, Los Angeles Rans; Donald Parham, Los Angeles Chargers 

Sit-Kyle Pitts, TE, Atlanta Falcons

The return of Desmond Ridder behind center does not provide enough excitement to continue to plug Pitts in lineups. Of course, it could backfire with his ability. However, checking his fantasy production on the season with only one score and not finishing as a TE1 across the past four weeks pushes me to stream another tight end.

Other TEs to Avoid: Michael Mayer, Las Vegas Raiders

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