25 DOs and DON’Ts of Fantasy Football Christmas

Isaac Hunt

1) Do start your starters. This has been a repeated theme this year, but don’t stray from what has gotten you here. Unless you are fighting to not be in last then change away.

2) Do keep an eye on questionable RBs like Matt Forte (ankle), Arian Foster (heart), Chris Johnson (leg), Trent Richardson (ankle). Expect them all to play, but track their practice regimens.

3) Don’t panic too much when you see “heart” listed as Arian Foster’s injury. Foster left his game Sunday with an irregular heartbeat. He has since seen a cardiologist and everything is back to normal.

4) Do expect Adrian Peterson to rush for 208 yards against the Green Bay Packers. He’s come this far. An injury-ridden team isn’t going to stop him from getting the rushing record.

5) Do start Michael Vick over Andy Dalton, Josh Freeman, Sam Bradford, and his opponent Eli Manning. Since Vick has been with the Eagles he is 5-1 against the Giants. Vick will be out to prove himself to those who are looking like the Jets’ Rex Ryan.

6) Don’t worry about Brandon Marshall not being able to get 20 points this week. He will get up there against Detroit.

7) Don’t be afraid Tom Brady will lose you the championship. He had his worst game against Miami earlier this year and Brady will know exactly what he did wrong and fix it.

8) Do pick up Montell Owens. Owens has taken over the RB position for Jacksonville and has averaged nine points per game as a starter. The Jaguars will be up against the Titans who possess the leagues 23rd rushing defense. Owens is currently owned in less than 10 percent of leagues.

9) Don’t guarantee a victory, even if you are in a two-week playoff and winning by 40. You will upset the fantasy football gods and have a great chance to lose.

10) Do be thankful the Seahawks are playing the Rams this week. There is no guesswork in this matchup. Seattle players will do great and St. Louis will struggle. Seattle has had the best month in football so far.

11) Don’t keep watching to see if Andre Johnson can get into the end zone. Defenses plan against him in the Red Zone. He is still a top 10 wide receiver despite only scoring four times this season.

12) Do pay attention to D/ST waivers and expect double-digit D/STs to score double-digits. This week contains many lopsided division matchups.

13) Do fight for any position you can. If you are fighting for first or seventh this is the week that you can prove yourself to your league mates.

14) Don’t expect the Atlanta passing game to be as strong as it was last week, even if Tampa Bay does have the 32nd ranked passing defense it is sixth in interceptions. The Bucs also held Matt Ryan to one TD earlier this season. Also that Doug Martin guy can chew up the clock.

15) Do expect Peyton Manning to have a big game against the Chiefs. A win would clinch a bye week in the playoffs and it is Kansas City.

16) Do covet Ray Rice over any RB who is not close to breaking the single season rushing record. Jim Caldwell is still trying to prove he knows how to use Rice. This will be a great game to showcase his play calling.

17) Do pick up TE Brandon Myers. He has outscored Martellus Bennett, Antonio Gates, Vernon Davis, and many others. He is ranked ninth in active TEs. And owned in less than 30 percent of leagues.

18) Do start Rob Bironas and Josh Scobee. Tennessee and Jacksonville are 28th and 29th respectively in points allowed to kickers. This game could be a field goal range kick off.

19) Do start Calvin Johnson.

20) Don’t expect a great day from him. Johnson averages less than 73 yards a game against the Bears and was held to just 34 yards earlier this year.

21) Do trust your gut. Unless your gut is telling you to sit a top 10 player at any position that isn’t injured.

22) Do respect Reggie Bush as a legitimate fantasy football starter now and for the next few years. Bush needs 40 yards this week to have his second — and back-to-back — 1,000-yard season.

23) Do think hard about starting a Carolina running back. Jonathan Stewart (12 points against New Orleans), DeAngelo Williams (12), and Mike Tolbert (8) all had good games the last time the played the Saints.

24) Don’t actually start any of them unless you are in a league deeper than 10 teams.

25) Have fun with it. And never cheer for players over your favorite team. It is another good way to upset the fantasy football gods.