Welcome to our Fantasy Football Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em for Week 10 of the NFL season. In this week’s column, we focus in on two rookie running backs that have taken advantage of their team’s faith in them. Plus, we examine whether or not Kenyan Drake can keep his stellar play going vs. the Buccaneers.
* Reminder: Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em is intended to present you with the non-obvious choices for your fantasy lineup. We dig deep into player matchups, scoring trends, and other factors to best help you with your fantasy decisions. Superstars such as Christian McCaffrey and Saquon Barkley will not be found in this column. If you’re looking for players of their caliber check out our weekly fantasy football running back rankings.
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RB: Start ‘Em
Start of the Week: Josh Jacobs vs. LAC
Jacobs has been phenomenal of late, rushing for 120+ yards in three of his last four games. Even better than those numbers is the rookie’s volume of usage. Over those three weeks, Jacobs averaged 25 rushing attempts per game. Since Week 4, the Chargers have allowed the opposing teams’ leading scorer from the running back position to average 20.8 fantasy points.
Aaron Jones vs. CAR
Jones burned fantasy owners in Week 9. Don’t expect that to be the case this coming week. Carolina allows the fifth-most fantasy points to running backs this season, including an insane 30.1 point average to opposing starting RBs over the past two weeks. The Panthers are also one game removed from allowing Titans RBs to haul in eight total receptions. Jones leads all Packers players with 35 receptions this season.
Devin Singletary at CLE
It finally happened! After weeks of stellar performances, Buffalo seemingly handed Devin Singletary the reins to their backfield in Week 9. Singletary rewarded his team for the added faith to the tune of 140 total yards on 23 touches. Singletary, who’s averaged a mind-boggling 9.53 yards per carry in four of his games this season, faces off with a Cleveland defense who just allowed Phillip Lindsay the slash them for 10.2 yards a pop.
Sleeper: Tarik Cohen vs. DET
David Montgomery dominates backfield touches for the Bears and is a quality start this coming week. However, his running mate, Tarik Cohen has some nice sleeper appeal, due to his receiving ability. The Lions, who already surrender the most points to opposing running backs this season, have struggled to defend RBs in the passing game. Five different RBs have seen 5+ targets against the Lions this year, those backs average an impressive 5.6 receptions, 61.5 receiving yards, and three total receiving touchdowns.
RB: Sit ‘Em
Sit of the Week: Kalen Ballage at IND
Someone in your league has saved up their FAAB money all year for this moment. The moment to blow the bank on Kallen Ballage. Hopefully, you weren’t that guy, because if you were this is a bad week to hope for any return on investment. Ballage has averaged just 2.0 ypc this season. If you eliminate his 75-yard touchdown from his resume last season, he would have finished his rookie campaign with just a 3.3 ypc average. He is what he is at this point. Indianapolis also happens to be the eighth-best fantasy defense against opposing running backs this season, and are just one week removed from holding Jaylen Samuels to a putrid 1.2 ypc average.
Chiefs RBs at TEN
Eliminate Damien Williams’ 91-yard touchdown run from his statistics for last week and he finishes with just 34 rushing yards. Williams had failed to eclipse 35 rushing yards in any game this season leading into Week 9. LeSean McCoy has not scored in double-digits since Week 4. All that these two backs do at the moment is devalue each other’s fantasy worth. In terms of the matchup, prior to Run CMC torching Tennessee a week ago (an obvious outlier), they had been riding a two-game streak where they held all running backs to 35 rushing yards or fewer.
Buyers Beware: Kenyan Drake at TB
No one has been on the Kenyan Drake hype-train as long as I have over these past few rollercoaster seasons. However, that ride may have ended after just one stop in Arizona. For starters, reports are that David Johnson is expected to return on Sunday. Secondly, and maybe most importantly, the Buccaneers have allowed the third-fewest fantasy points to running backs this season. The likes of Saquon Barkley, Alvin Kamara, Todd Gurley, and Christian McCaffrey (twice) combined for an average of just 31.2 rushing yards.
READ NEXT: Fantasy: Running Back Rankings Week 10