Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em Week 11: Analyzing Tough Decisions at Wide Receiver

Many big-name wide receivers are not getting the job done for their fantasy football owners this season.

Injuries, poor production and a combination of the two have turned former stars into borderline players potentially not even worth our time. All three of these guys were top-10 wideouts before, but now we must decide if they warrant a place in our starting lineups.

Does a returning Percy Harvin deserve an immediate start? Will Hakeem Nicks ever score a touchdown? Would fantasy owners be better off if Roddy White remained inactive?

Let’s answer all of those lingering questions in today’s game of start or sit.

Percy Harvin (vs. Minnesota Vikings)

After missing the first 10 games of the season, Percy Harvin is set to make his debut with the Seattle Seahawks. And what do you know, his return comes right as they face his old team. 

Upon hearing Adam Schefter’s report that the oft-injured star will suit up, ESPN summed up his fantasy status perfectly.

According to @AdamSchefter, Percy Harvin WILL play this week. Huge risk/reward play. #FantasyFootball

— ESPN Fantasy Sports (@ESPNFantasy) November 15, 2013

Last season, Harvin was a stud before an ankle injury cut his season short in November. The elusive wideout caught 62 passes for 677 yards through nine games, making him a legitimate No. 1 fantasy option.

How many receptions will Percy Harvin collect during his first game of the 2013 season?

How many receptions will Percy Harvin collect during his first game of the 2013 season?

  • None

  • 1-3

  • 4-6

  • 7-9

  • 10 or more

This time he kicks off his season in November, and the Seahawks can sure use him to spruce up their offense. They are currently averaging just 208.6 passing yards per game with Golden Tate operating as their biggest threat.

It would not be shocking if Harvin burst out of the gate with a seven-catch performance, but it also would not be much of a stunner if he remained relatively quiet as a decoy receiving a few dump-offs in limited snaps as a gradual welcome back to the show.

Daring owners who have nobody better to employ can take a chance on Harvin, especially since Minnesota’s passing defense ranks 29th, but don’t expect much out of a guy who hasn’t played an NFL game in over a year.

Verdict: Sit

Hakeem Nicks (vs. Green Bay Packers)

Al Bello/Getty Images

Hakeem Nicks is eventually going to score a touchdown.

He has received 72 targets, yet Nicks has not straddled one Eli Manning toss across the pylon through nine games. Including last season, he now has three scores through 21 contests.

Will Hakeem Nicks score a touchdown this Sunday?

Will Hakeem Nicks score a touchdown this Sunday?

A big body who can box out defenders, Nicks is not the type of receiver who typically struggles to score touchdowns. The smaller Victor Cruz, who is suffering through a drought as well with one score since his three-touchdown bonanza during Week 1, is a more likely candidate for such a slump.

“He’s due” doesn’t fly as analysis, but isn’t he? Look no further than Andre Johnson—who broke a seven-game scoreless streak with five during his past two—as evidence that there’s little rhyme or reason to a player’s touchdown rate.

With 38 receptions and 570 yards despite his goose egg in the TD column, Nicks is still a decent No. 3 receiver who could finally visit the end zone against Green Bay’s short corners.

Verdict: Start

Roddy White (at Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Roddy White has caught 15 passes for 149 yards this season. Rishard Matthews nabbed 12 receptions for 120 yards and two touchdowns last week.

A no-name out of Miami’s slot delivered more fantasy production through one game than White has mustered through six, yet the veteran still holds a Week 11 aggregate ranking of No. 30 among participating experts on FantasyPros. That makes him a starting wideout in many formats. 

I’m going to go ahead and pass on the guy who hasn’t caught more than four passes in a game this season.

The 32-year-old foolishly played through pain before finally relenting and taking a month off. Then he came back just in time to get shut down by Richard Sherman and the Seahawks.

At least he no longer has to deal with Sherman, so maybe this is White’s week to bounce back. Except now he is now facing Darrelle Revis. Yikes.

TB will look for @Revis24 to shut down Roddy White as he did to Mike Wallace on #MNF. See more Key Matchups:

— Tampa Bay Buccaneers (@TBBuccaneers) November 15, 2013

Any of White’s owners have to be desperate to play the slumping wideout this week. In fact, he’s one or two more lackluster outings away from warranting a trip to the waiver wire.

Verdict: Sit

Other WRs to Consider in Week 11
Golden Tate Minnesota Vikings Don’t write Tate off due to Harvin’s return. He’ll still likely serve as Russell Wilson’s top target this weekend. Start
Aaron Dobson at Carolina Panthers He has scored three touchdowns during his last two games, but Carolina’s passing defense ranks fifth in the NFL. Sit
Riley Cooper Washington Redskins After two straight 100-plus-yard, multiple-touchdown games, Cooper is worth picking up and starting right away. Start

Schedule courtesy of

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