This coming Sunday night the San Francisco 49ers go to Seattle to take on the Seahawks for bragging rights in the NFC west. And while both teams are very talented and have the potential to make a run in the playoffs. There is a ton of decisions to be made in the Fantasy Football world if you have any of the players from the 49ers or Seahawks on your roster. There will be a fine line between great decision and poor decision, based solely on the quality of players and defensive prowess that will be partaking in the game.
Offensively, there is no doubt that the two featured running backs for the 49ers and Seahawks are a must start. Even with the two of them playing opposite one of the best defenses in the league at stopping the run. Unless of course you have another running back on your roster that ranks in the top ten of running backs in the league, which is very unlikely in most fantasy football formats. And both Frank Gore and Marshawn Lynch ran for over 100 yards last time they played each other anyway, so the decision to start these guys should be a no-brainer. Both have ran for over 1,000 yards on the season, both are averaging over 80 yards per game, both are averaging right around five yards per carry, and both are carrying the ball over 6 times per game on average. If you have a running back that can match those statistical guidelines, then yes, you should start them. But chances are, you are playing in a format that employs a Flex player, which would already have your third choice of running back starting in that position. So really, you would end up starting a running back of a much lesser caliber than your top three if you chose to sit either Gore or Lynch.
Note to Fantasy Football players: If you start any positional player other than running back in your Flex position, you are really making a bad decision. Or you have a really bad team, and it’s time to start offering trades for next year. On average, running backs garner much more points than any other position except for quarterback. Yes, you can get away with starting a wide receiver or tight end there from time to time, but in the long run the consistency will not lend itself to productivity.
The other must start if you have them on your roster is the defense/special teams for both of these teams. Both defenses are in the top five of nearly every statistical category in the league at this point. And in points allowed on the season, these two teams are ahead of the third place team by over 20 points. Chances are, the top ten defensive teams in the league are already on a roster anyway, so more than likely you don’t have that high a caliber defense as a back up plan. You could look at particular match ups for other defensive starts, like if there is a defense still on the market that is set to play the Chiefs, Jaguars, Cardinals, Eagles, or Jets. But then again, the offenses for the 49ers and Seahawks will more than likely not put up a lot of points either, their last contest ended 13-6. So there is a good chance that the 49ers or Seahawks defense will garner more points than any other you decide to gamble with.
The only other starter on either team that should be considered for your Fantasy Football lineup this week is wide receiver Michael Crabtree. In the last three games he has caught seven or more passes in each and he has gone over 100 yards in two of the last three. The 49ers new quarterback Colin Kaepernick has fallen in love with Crabtree lately, and is looking his way for over half of his targets. But given the defense that Crabtree is going up against, he is not a must start. If there is another viable option on your roster, it may be in your best interest to look there. Seattle is too stingy, and Kaepernick is not a Tom Brady type of quarterback that can make his receivers get open. Unfortunately, there is not a single Seattle wide receiver that would be worth starting. Not one Seahawks wide receiver has more than 50 receptions on the season, and against this 49ers defense their opportunities will be limited.
Also a do not start for these teams are the two quarterbacks. Though both are extremely talented and both coming into their own, they have too strong of a running back behind each of them to make them all that valuable. They do not throw the ball enough to start against such a stingy defense. If either one of them complete 15 or more passes for 150 yards or more it will be a miracle. Start them against some teams, but not each other. And more than likely, you have a better quarterback on your roster to go with.
The tight ends for each team are also not worthy of starting on your Fantasy Football roster. Vernon Davis has been virtually non existent for most of the season, and it appears that he has been eliminated from the offensive scheme moving forward as he hasn’t caught more than two passes in each of the last four games. As for the Seahawks tight end Zach Miller, he has only caught 33 passes on the entire year, so his production value is also very low.
With most Fantasy Football league coming to an end this weekend, it is imperative that smart and sound decisions be made if you have any of these players on your roster. In the end, go with the running backs and defenses for these two teams, consider the 49ers wide receiver, and stay away from the quarterbacks and tight ends.
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