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Start 'Em, Sit 'Em Running Backs Fantasy Football Week 12: What the Jeff Wilson

Jeff Wilson is primed to run all over the discombobulated Houston Texans defense as the RB Start 'Em of the Week.

Start ‘Em, Sit 'Em is the ultimate look at the best and worst matchups based on a PPR scoring system in fantasy football. This column will not cover the elite players in the NFL like Josh Allen, Austin Ekeler or Cooper Kupp. Instead, I'll look at the players you have questions about who could exceed or fail to meet expectations at each position. For all of your final fantasy lineup decisions, be sure to check out my weekly player rankings which will be updated daily throughout the 2022 NFL season.

Fabs Top 10 Running Backs
1. Austin Ekeler at Cardinals
2. Derrick Henry vs. Bengals
3. Christian McCaffrey vs. Saints
4. Jonathan Taylor vs. Steelers (MNF)
5. Josh Jacobs at Seahawks
6. Ken Walker vs. Raiders
7. Rhamondre Stevenson at Vikings (Thur.)
8. Saquon Barkley at Cowboys (Thur.)
9. Jeff Wilson Jr. vs. Texans
10. Aaron Jones at Eagles


Week 12 Start ‘Em: Running Backs

Start of the Week

Jeff Wilson Jr. vs. Texans (1 p.m. ET, CBS): Wilson Jr. has been on fire since he landed in Miami, scoring a combined 38.5 fantasy points against the Bears and Browns. He has another tasty matchup next on the schedule, as Wilson Jr. will go up against a Texans defense, allowing the most fantasy points to backs. In fact, six runners have scored more than 23 points against Houston this season.

Start ‘Em

Antonio Gibson vs. Falcons (1 p.m. ET, Fox): Gibson isn't putting up huge totals, but he has scored 13-plus points in four of his last six games and remains a big part of the Commanders' offense. He'll be in the RB2 or flex conversation this week, as Gibson faces a great matchup against the Falcons. Since Week 8, their defense has given up an average of more than 27 points a game to backs.

SI Sportsbook Player Prop: Gibson over 51.5 rushing yards (-125)

James Conner vs. Chargers (4:05 p.m. ET, CBS): Conner has been getting into the end zone lately, scoring three touchdowns in his last two games. He'll be in the RB2 conversation this week, as the Cardinals host a Chargers defense that's soft against running backs. The Bolts have allowed 13 total touchdowns and the third-most points per game to the position, so Conner should fly high again.

SI Sportsbook Player Prop: Conner anytime TD (-110)

Latavius Murray at Panthers (1 p.m. ET, CBS): Murray was on the Saints practice last month. Now he's the Broncos' lead back after the release of Melvin Gordon. He's a viable flex option against the Panthers, who have surrendered 13 total scores and the seventh-most fantasy points to running backs. Murray, who has scored in three of his last four games, is in a good spot to find success.

Rachaad White at Browns (1 p.m. ET, Fox): The Buccaneers have listed Leonard Fournette as doubtful due to an injured hip, so White should see the lion's share of the carries in a plus matchup against the Browns. Their defense has been soft on enemy backs, allowing 16 total touchdowns and the second-most fantasy points to the position. I'd consider White a solid No. 2 fantasy option in most leagues.

More Starts
• David Montgomery at Jets (1 p.m. ET, Fox)
• Miles Sanders vs. Packers (8:20 p.m. ET, NBC)
• Michael Carter vs. Bears (1 p.m. ET, Fox)

DFS Bargains
• Jeff Wilson Jr. vs. Texans ($5,900)
• Antonio Gibson vs. Falcons ($5,400)
• Latavius Murray at Panthers ($5,000)

Week 12 Sit ‘Em: Running Backs

Sit of the Week

Cordarrelle Patterson at Commanders (1 p.m. ET, Fox): Patterson has become a committee back as the Falcons continue to use Tyler Allgeier and Caleb Huntley in the offense. That's evident in the 18 combined touches he's had during the last two weeks. This week, he'll be a risk against the upstart Commanders, who have allowed the second-fewest fantasy points to opposing running backs since Week 8.

SI Sportsbook: Patterson under 48.5 rushing yards (-125)

Sit ‘Em

D’Onta Foreman vs. Broncos (1 p.m. ET, Fox): This one pains me, as I'm a big fan of Foreman. Unfortunately, a bad matchup against the Broncos makes him a fade as more than a low-end flex. Their defense has held backs like Derrick Henry, Rashaad Penny and Dameon Pierce to fewer than 10 points in games earlier this season, so I'd temper expectations in what could be a low-scoring affair.

SI Sportsbook Player Prop: Foreman under 57.5 rushing yards (-125)

Kareem Hunt vs. Buccaneers (1 p.m. ET, Fox): This is low-hanging fantasy fruit, but my options are limited with three games already in the books! As talented as he is between the white lines, Hunt simply doesn't get enough work behind Nick Chubb to be a viable fantasy option. In fact, he's seen seven or fewer touches in four of his last five games. I'd keep Hunt on the bench vs. the Buccaneers. 

Cam Akers at Chiefs (4:25 p.m. ET, Fox): Akers led the Rams backfield in terms of carries last week, but it's still hard to trust anyone in this committee. The Rams have questions at quarterback with Matthew Stafford (concussion) injured, and their offensive line is among the worst in the league in run blocking. So, while a game against the Chiefs is favorable on paper, I'd still beware of Akers this week.

Isiah Pacheco vs. Rams (4:25 p.m. ET, Fox): Pacheco continues to start for the Chiefs, and his 107 rushing yards last week in Los Angeles was a career-high. But while he's trending in the right direction regarding usage, Pacheco still needs to be a consistent point scorer. In fact, he's compiled just 16.9 points in his last two games. I'd consider him a low-end flex starter in a matchup against the Rams.

More Sits
• Samaje Perine at Titans (1 p.m. ET, CBS)
• Elijah Mitchell vs. Saints (4:25 p.m. ET, Fox)
• A.J. Dillon at Eagles (8:20 p.m. ET, NBC)

DFS Fades
• Alvin Kamara at 49ers ($7,300)
• Dameon Pierce at Dolphins ($6,100)
• Cordarrelle Patterson at Commanders ($6,000)

More fantasy & NFL coverage:

Waiver Wire Pickups for Week 12
NFL DFS Thanksgiving Day Picks
Week 12 IDP Waiver Wire
Fantasy Fallout: Another Bad Week for Running Backs
Early Week 12 Waiver Wire Pickups
NFL Power Rankings: Chiefs, Cowboys Make Claim for No. 1 Spot

Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on Sports Illustrated and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. Click here to read all his articles here on SI Fantasy. You can follow Michael on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram for your late-breaking fantasy news and the best analysis in the business to help you win a fantasy championship!


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