Each week this season, I will provide fantasy football advice about which Detroit Lions to start or sit. Even if you don't have any Lions on your fantasy team(s) or really just don't care to have another opinion messing with your ultimate decisions, this could very well serve as a preview of sorts for what to expect come game day.
QB Matthew Stafford
LAST WEEK: 313 yards, 2 touchdowns and an interception.
THIS WEEK: Stafford struggled against the Packers just a few weeks ago, throwing for 266 yards while turning the ball over three times, but the Packers secondary is prone to giving up a lot of yards. They gave up over 30 to both the Saints and Colts and nearly gave up 30 to the Giants two weeks ago.
The weather forecast may call for some sloppy football and more running, but the Lions are probably going to wind up throwing more than their fair share due to likely playing from behind and because, well, they're the Lions; it's what they do.
The primetime intangible may also play a role and I think Stafford is more likely to shine than stumble.
VERDICT: Start, unless you're fortunate enough to have another top-10 QB.
RB Mikel Leshoure
LAST WEEK: Leshoure had 57 yards on 21 carries and found paydirt. He also had 2 catches for 16 yards.
THIS WEEK: Leshoure ran for over 80 yards and had a touchdown in Week 11, and the Packers have struggled against the run, really, all season. Over the last two weeks, the Packers have given up over 30 fantasy points to opposing run games and touchdowns in six of their last seven.
VERDICT: Strong RB2.
RB Joique Bell
LAST WEEK: Bell ran for 81 yards and had 3 catches for 21 yards.
THIS WEEK: I'll cut and paste this from last week: still not a fan of Bell unless you're desperate and in a PPR league.
VERDICT: I'm not.
WR Calvin Johnson
LAST WEEK: 13 catches, 171 yards and a touchdown. 20 (!) targets. Animal.
THIS WEEK: Megatron.
WR Titus Young
LAST WEEK: Still.
THIS WEEK: An.
WR Ryan Broyles
LAST WEEK: Tore his ACL after his first catch.
THIS WEEK: :(
TE Brandon Pettigrew
LAST WEEK: 3 catches, 43 yards and a remarkable touchdown catch.
THIS WEEK: With the Lions rolling with Mike Thomas and practice squad hands, Pettigrew should see an uptick in plays drawn up for him. If the weather does make it sloppy play, short little dump offs to Pettigrew could be quite popular.
The Packers' defense against opposing tight ends is some of their best, ranked No. 9, but they gave up a touchdown last week and I could see Pettigrew scoring again this week for the third time in five weeks, if he doesn't drop it.
VERDICT: Top-10 TE option.
LAST WEEK: 35 points, but 3 interceptions and 2 sacks. They almost had that touchdown.
THIS WEEK: Not a real big fan here.
VERDICT: Better options out there.
K Jason Hanson
LAST WEEK: Butters had 4 field goals (including one from 52 yards) and 3 extra points.
THIS WEEK: The Lions are a top-10 team in the NFL in terms of red-zone opportunities, so they should again provide plenty of opportunities for Hanson to kick. However, the potential weather hazards scare me and would probably have me leaning toward the waiver wire for a slightly better matchup.
VERDICT: Not the worst option, but take a look at what's out there first.
What do you think? Have any fantasy questions? Comment below.
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