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The Week 12 Salary Cap Challenge is now live, meaning you guys have between now and Sunday morning to sign up and set your rosters for a chance at fantasy glory.
For those of you who haven’t tried this out yet, it’s really simple and a lot of fun. You get a $60,000 salary cap to put together a roster that consists of the following positions: QB, RB, RB, WR, WR, WR, TE, D/ST, K.
And don’t worry. Yours truly will be working through the holiday and will have the weekly starts and sits column ready for your inspection on Friday afternoon. But before we get to the Sunday action, let’s take a look at your motivational moment of the day and then break down the Turkey Day matchups.
Thanksgiving Fantasy Rundown
New England Patriots (8-2, 3-2 road) at Detroit Lions (2-8, 2-2 home)
Opening Line: Patriots -7/51
Current Line: Patriots -7/51
Note: The Lions are 4-0 against the spread in their last four home games. However, Detroit has lost six-straight outings on Thanksgiving Day by an average of 23.2 points per game.
Note 2: New England is 5-2-1 against the spread in their last eight road games vs. a team with a losing record.
Pick: Patriots -7
ICONTom Brady and his hair make for a solid Week 12 fantasy start.
PATRIOTS: QB Tom Brady (right shoulder/foot, limited on Monday, missed Tuesday), RB Fred Taylor (toe, limited on Monday and Tuesday), G Steve Neal (shoulder, limited Monday, missed Tuesday)
LIONS: RB Jahvid Best (toe, missed Monday, limited Tuesday), K Jason Hanson (knee, missed Monday and Tuesday), TE Tony Scheffler (rib, missed Monday and Tuesday), DE Kyle Vanden Bosch (knee, missed Tuesday)
STARTS: Tom Brady, BenJarvus Green-Ellis, Danny Woodhead (RB3/flex), Aaron Hernandez, Wes Welker (WR2/3), Shayne Graham, New England D/ST, Shaun Hill, Calvin Johnson, Nate Burleson (WR3), Brandon Pettigrew
SITS: Fred Taylor, Brandon Tate, Deion Branch, Rob Gronkowski, Jahvid Best, Maurice Morris, Tony Scheffler, Dave Rayner, Detroit D/ST
What happens when you take the league’s highest scoring offense (New England 28.9 pts/gm) and send them up against a defense that is surrendering 23.7 points per game in 2010 (22nd in NFL)?
Owners should feel confident starting just about every member of the New England offense. On the flip side, only start the Detroit Lions that are involved in the passing game (QB, WR, TE).
New Orleans Saints (7-3, 3-1 road) at Dallas Cowboys (3-7, 1-4 home)
Opening Line: Saints -3/50.5
Current Line: Saints -3.5/50.5
Note: The Cowboys are 4-0 in their last four Thanksgiving Day matchups with an average margin of victory of 25.2 points per game. In addition, Dallas has held each of their last four Thanksgiving Day opponents to ten points or less.
Note 2: New Orleans is 4-1 against the spread in their last five games as a favorite, but is just 1-6 ATS in their last seven games vs. a team with a losing record.
Pick: Cowboys +3.5
ICONEven if Bush is good to go on Thursday, his touches will likely be limited.
SAINTS: RB Reggie Bush (leg, full practice Monday, limited reps Tuesday), RB Chris Ivory (shoulder/knee, limited reps Monday, full practice Tuesday), RB Pierre Thomas (ankle, limited reps Monday, no practice Tuesday), TE Jeremy Shockey (rib, limited reps Monday and Tuesday), S Darren Sharper (hamstring, limited reps on Monday and Tuesday), S Malcolm Jenkins (neck, limited reps Monday and Tuesday)
COWBOYS: RB Felix Jones (hip, no practice Monday or Tuesday), QB Tony Romo (left shoulder, no practice Monday or Tuesday), LB Bradie James (knee, full practice Monday and Tuesday), CB Terence Newman (ankle, full practice Monday and Tuesday)
STARTS: Drew Brees, Chris Ivory (flex, if Bush doesn’t play), Marques Colston, Robert Meachem (WR3, deeper leagues), Garrett Hartley (deeper leagues), New Orleans D/ST (deeper leagues), Jon Kitna (deeper leagues), Felix Jones (flex, if healthy), Miles Austin, Dez Bryant, Jason Witten, David Buehler (deeper leagues)
SITS: Reggie Bush, Pierre Thomas, Jeremy Shockey, Lance Moore, Devery Henderson, Jimmy Graham, Marion Barber, Tashard Choice, Roy Williams, Martellus Bennett, Dallas D/ST
Expect an exciting football game in Dallas on Thursday when two teams that rank in the top-11 in the NFL in scoring offense take the field at JerryWorld.
New Orleans is 3-1 on the road this season and enters Week 12 having won four of their last five games. Meanwhile, the Dallas Cowboys have rattled off two straight victories since offensive coordinator Jason Garrett took over for former head coach Wade Phillips.
Anyone else think the Cowboys will play spoiler Thursday afternoon?
Cincinnati Bengals (2-8, 1-4 road) at New York Jets (8-2, 3-2 home)
Opening Line: Jets -9.5/43.5
Current Line: Jets -9/43.5
Weather: 42 degrees with a chance of showers
Note: The New York Jets are 5-1 against the spread in their last six games vs. the AFC.
Note 2: The Cincinnati Bengals are 1-6 against the spread in their last seven games overall.
Pick: Jets -9
ICONHolmes is currently riding a big-time hot streak.
BENGALS: CB Johnathan Joseph (ankle, did not practice Monday or Tuesday), QB Carson Palmer (foot, did not practice Monday or Tuesday), CB Brandon Ghee (groin, did not practice Monday or Tuesday)
JETS: WR Jerricho Cotchery (groin, did not practice Monday or Tuesday), DE Shaun Ellis (knee, took limited reps on Monday and Tuesday), T Damien Woody (knee, did not practice Monday or Tuesday), LB David Harris (calf, full participation on Monday and Tuesday), QB Mark Sanchez (calf, full participation on Monday and Tuesday), LB Calvin Pace (foot, full participation on Monday and Tuesday), CB Darrelle Revis (hamstring, full participation on Monday and Tuesday)
STARTS: Terrell Owens (WR2/3), Chad Ochocinco (WR3), Jermaine Gresham (deeper leagues), Mark Sanchez, LaDainian Tomlinson (RB2/3), Shonn Greene (RB2/2), Santonio Holmes, Braylon Edwards, Dustin Keller, Nick Folk, New York D/ST
SITS: Carson Palmer, Cedric Benson, Bernard Scott, Jordan Shipley, Aaron Pettrey, Cincinnati D/ST, Jerricho Cotchery
Stick a fork in the Cincinnati Bengals, because this team is finished. Marvin Lewis’ squad has lost seven straight games, is 1-4 on the road, ranks 18th in the league in total defense (341.3 yds/gm) and 26th in the league in scoring defense (26.2 pts/gm) this season.
Keep in mind that the Jets have the advantage in two very important statistical categories. New York currently ranks ninth in the league in turnover differential (+5) and 17th in yards per play average (5.36).
On the other side of the ball, the Bengals rank 19th in turnover differential (-2) and 24th in yards per play average (5.17).
This game should get out of hand in a hurry.
Hit me up on Twitter: @JoeFortenbaugh
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