Start Em Sit Em

Start 'Em, Sit 'Em: Defenses for Week 12

Start 'Em & Sit 'Em is the ultimate look at the weekly NFL matchups and how they'll affect your fantasy football team. Sleeper alert features an under-the-radar player who could produce good numbers. Owners beware features a regular fantasy starter who could fail to meet expectations based on the strength of his opponent. Obvious fantasy starters like Aaron Rodgers and Adrian Peterson will not be featured. For your final lineup decisions, check our lineup rankings.

Start of the week

Ravens defense vs. New York Jets: The Jets have been a fantasy defense's dream come true when playing on the road this season. In fact, opposing home defenses facing rookie quarterback Geno Smith and the Men in Green have combined to score the second-most fantasy points (17.0 PPG) in 2013. Start the Ravens with confidence this week. (Maximum value: High DEF1)

Start 'em

Rams defense vs. Chicago Bears: The Rams have quietly posted solid fantasy totals, recording 32 sacks with 11 interceptions, five total touchdowns and the fifth-most fantasy points at the position. This aggressive unit has been particularly tough on their home field in the second half of the season too, so go ahead and roll with the Rams. (Maximum value: Mid DEF1)

Texans defense vs. Jacksonville Jaguars: The Texans defense has not been much of a fantasy football option this season, but a matchup at home against the Jaguars is enough to make it a viable start. To this point in the season, opposing defenses have combined to score the second-most fantasy points (13.1 PPG) against Jacksonville. (Maximum value: Mid DEF1)

Sleeper alert - Titans defense at Oakland Raiders: The Titans are available in over 70 percent of NFL.com leagues, and this weekend's matchup against the Raiders make them a nice one-week option. To this point in the season, defenses have combined to score the fifth-most fantasy points (10.2 PPG) when facing Oakland's inconsistent offensive attack. (Maximum value: Low DEF1)

Sit of the week

Patriots defense at Denver Broncos: The Patriots have scored at least 10 fantasy points in three of their last four games, but this week's matchup against Peyton Manning and the Broncos is anything but favorable. In fact, opposing defenses have combined to score the fewest fantasy points (3.50 PPG) when going up against Denver in 2013. (Maximum value: Mid DEF2)

Sit 'em

Chargers defense at Kansas City Chiefs: Since putting up a 15-point effort against the Jaguars in Week 7, the Chargers defense has scored a combined 17 fantasy points in its last three games. The next opponent on the slate is Kansas City -- defenses have combined to score the fifth-fewest fantasy points (5.7 PPG) against them in 2013. (Maximum value: Mid DEF2)

Dolphins defense vs. Carolina Panthers: The Dolphins rank among the 15-best defenses in the NFL based on fantasy points, but this unit has scored a huge percentage of those points in three games. This isn't a week to start them, as the Panthers have been very tough on defensive scoring from a fantasy perspective (6.3 PPG) this season. (Maximum value: Low DEF2)

Owners beware - Cardinals defense vs. Indianapolis Colts: The Cardinals have scored double-digit fantasy points in two of their last three games, but a matchup against Andrew Luck and the Colts is anything but favorable. In fact, opposing home defenses facing Indianapolis have combined to score the second-fewest fantasy points (3.0 PPG). (Maximum value: High DEF2)

Michael Fabiano is an award-winning fantasy football analyst on NFL.com and NFL Network and a member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association (FSWA) Hall of Fame. Have a burning question on anything fantasy related? Tweet it to @Michael_Fabiano or send a question via Facebook!

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