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 Arian Foster will not be featured in this column. For your final lineup decisions, check our lineup rankings.
Start of the week
Shayne Graham vs. Jacksonville Jaguars: Graham has posted mediocre totals in his last two games, but this week's matchup against the Jaguars is a favorable one. Jacksonville has allowed the second-most fantasy points to opposing kickers in road games (10.25 PPG) and the seventh-most overall, so Graham should be in a good position to succeed in this AFC South contest.
Shaun Suisham vs. Baltimore Ravens: Quietly, Suisham has posted top-10 fantasy totals at his position this season. In fact, he has just 2.10 fewer points than Sebastian Janikowski. This week he faces the Ravens, who have allowed the fifth-most fantasy points to opposing kickers on the road (10.80 PPG). Suisham is still a free agent in most NFL.com leagues.
Connor Barth at Carolina Panthers: Much like Suisham, Barth has put together a nice season with 80 fantasy points after 10 weeks. Also a free agent in most leagues, the veteran faces a Panthers team that has allowed the second-most fantasy points to kickers at home (12.80 PPG). Consider Barth worthy if you need a one-week replacement at the position.
Sleeper alert - Mike Nugent at Kansas City Chiefs:Fantasy owners in deeper leagues looking for a one-week kicker option should consider Nugent, who is still a free agent in most formats. The veteran goes up against a Chiefs team that has surrendered more fantasy points to opposing kickers at home (13.00 PPG) than any other team in the entire league.
Sit of the week
David Akers vs. Chicago Bears (Mon.): Sixteen. That's the total number of kickers who have more fantasy points than Akers after 10 weeks. He's also failed to put up double-digit points in each of his last four contests. The Bears have given up the sixth-fewest fantasy points to kickers on the road (6.00 PPG), so Akers is not in a good position to produce.
Dan Bailey vs. Cleveland Browns: Bailey has averaged a respectable nine fantasy points in his last four games, but this week's matchup against the Browns makes him a risk in fantasy land. The Browns have allowed the eighth-fewest fantasy points to opposing kickers overall this season. This unit has also given up just 12 field-goal conversions to this point.
Jay Feely at Atlanta Falcons:Fantasy owners might see this matchup against the Falcons and think Feely has some value kicking in a dome. However, this unit has actually allowed the seventh-fewest fantasy points to opposing kickers at home (6.00 PPG) in 2012. Overall, these Dirty Birds have given up the second-fewest points to kickers in fantasy football.
Owners beware - Matt Prater vs. San Diego Chargers: Prater was in the start 'em portion of this column last week, and he responded with 12 fantasy points. This week the matchup dictates that you put him back on your bench. That's because the Chargers have allowed the fewest fantasy points to opposing kickers on the road (4.75 PPG) this season.