Fantasy Football 2015: Patriots at Broncos Week 12 Preview
New England Patriots (10-0) at Denver Broncos (8-2)
Sunday, November 29, 2015; 8:30 PM ET
We’ve got a big-time AFC matchup coming in Week 12 on “Sunday Night Football,” as the Patriots travel to meet the Broncos. New England (10-0) got a key AFC East win against the Bills on Monday to stay perfect on the season, while Denver (8-2) pulled one out against the Bears in Week 11.
There will be plenty of fantasy football considerations out on the field for this one, so with that in mind let’s check out some of the key players to see what we might be expecting from our lineups in Week 12.
Tom Brady, QB, New England Patriots: Brady had a relatively subdued game against Buffalo, tossing for 277 yards on 20-of-39 with a TD and a pick. He also had another interception called back on penalties.
Perhaps the most damaging thing here is that WR Danny Amendola was hurt in the Bills game. Brady is quickly running out of warm bodies to throw to, and may have to rely on the rush and defense a bit more. Still, he’s an automatic fantasy start.
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Brock Osweiler, QB, Denver Broncos: Osweiler played well in his first career start against the Bears, logging a 20-of-27 line for 250 yards and a pair of passing touchdowns.
The general thinking is that Peyton Manning will be sidelined again for this game as the team tries to save him for the playoffs. That said, anyone wanting to use Manning or Osweiler will want to watch things in practice closely this week.
LeGarrette Blount, RB, New England Patriots: Blount owners got a double-dose of disappointment in Week 11. The RB rushed 16 times, but tallied just 56 yards. He also caught one pass for five more.
The very bad news here is that Blount has another vulture to deal with in James White, who snagged a pair of touchdowns against Buffalo. He may end up siphoning off Blount’s fantasy value in the coming weeks.
Ronnie Hillman, RB, Denver Broncos: Hillman ran well against the Bears, putting up 102 yards on 21 carries. C.J. Anderson had 12 attempts for 59 yards.
Hillman is the guy to have in this backfield right now, but with the QB situation the way it is (an injured Manning; a backup Osweiler), it’s hard to recommend him for much more than a flex. He’ll get a tough matchup with the Pats.
Rob Gronkowski, TE, New England Patriots: The Bills managed to keep Gronkowski in check on Monday, which isn’t an easy thing to do. He’d finish with just two catches for 37 yards, a far cry from his 113 yards against the Giants.
With the New England receiving corps depleted, teams can afford to focus more on Gronkowski. That’ll hurt his value, obviously, but given his ceiling you’ve still got to start him if you’ve got him.
Demaryius Thomas, WR, Denver Broncos: Thomas corralled a gorgeous 48-yard touchdown in the first quarter against the Bears, but didn’t do much after that. He’d finish with three grabs for 59 yards all together.
That’s Thomas’ first touchdown since Week 3, as he’s really fallen off when it comes to scoring. Osweiler appears to prefer his tight ends, but if you’ve got Thomas in fantasy you have to start him here.
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