A Houston Texans-Pittsburgh Steelers matchup doesn’t exactly jump off the page when it comes to “great” prime time NFL matchups, but these are some fairly evenly-matched teams. So there’s that. They’re both 3-3 and seemingly on the fringe of the AFC playoff picture at the moment. What can we expect when it comes to fantasy tonight? Who should you start?
Ryan Fitzpatrick (Texans) vs. Ben Roethlisberger (Steelers)
As a Texans fan, Ryan Fitzpatrick is quickly becoming the bane of my existence. The fact that I’m even on board with the idea of giving Ryan Mallett a shot says all you need to know about how the Fitzpatrick era is going for the Texans so far.
Big Ben hasn’t been really lighting-it-up so far this year, but his two best games also happen to be the Steelers’ lone home games. As they’re the home side again tonight, and considering the alternative is RYAN FITZPATRICK, this one’s fairly simple. Ben.
Arian Foster (Texans) vs. Le’Veon Bell (Steelers)
This one is also pretty damn simple. You start them both. Duh. What kind of super loaded team do you have to where you have to seriously consider benching one of these guys? They’re probably two of the three best backs in the NFL this season. Le’Veon hasn’t scored since Week 1, but that drought won’t last much longer.
If you’re in a position to have to bench one of them, then screw you and your superstar team.
Andre Johnson/DeAndre Hopkins (Texans) vs. Antonio Brown/Markus Wheaton/Lance Moore (Steelers)
Despite the obvious limitation of having RYAN FREAKING FITZPATRICK as his quarterback, Andre Johnson is having yet another fine season. He’s caught at least five passes in all but one of Houston’s games, but did score his first touchdown last week against the Colts. While Hopkins has three scores, Johnson is still the No. 1 for the Texans.
Antonio Brown is a fantasy can’t-miss these days. He’s caught at least seven passes in four games already this year, and leads the Steelers with five TD receptions. The Texans’ secondary isn’t scaring anyone, as evidenced by TY Hilton’s torch job of them in Week 6. Wheaton is clearly still figuring this whole NFL thing out, while I just found out Lance Moore was on the Steelers.
The ranking for tonight: Brown, Johnson, Hopkins, Wheaton, Corpse of Moore.
Garrett Graham (Texans) vs. Heath Miller (Steelers)
No tight end has found his way into the Houston offense this year, while Miller has seen spots here-and-there of productivity. However, the Texans have been stingy against opposing TEs, so Miller’s upside isn’t crazy here. I’m not touching either of these guys, but if you’re in a real pinch, then try Miller and pray. Pray hard.
Houston has JJ Watt, but little else. It’s looking like Jadeveon Clowney will be out again, so the Texans’ pass rush may continue to struggle a bit. Pittsburgh’s D has been burned several times this year, but they’ve also had their moments.
All together now: Houston is using RYAN FREAKING FITZPATRICK, which means they’re a lock for a couple of turnovers tonight. Neither D is a must-play, but I suppose the home club (Steelers) has the advantage.
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