The Duel

Week 12 Fantasy Picks: Start 'Em, Sit 'Em for Texans vs Lions

Larry Rupp
The Lions' inability to contain running backs makes Duke Johnson a great start in Week 12.
The Lions' inability to contain running backs makes Duke Johnson a great start in Week 12. / Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images
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The Houston Texans (3-7) will look to win their second consecutive game after pulling off an upset last week when they go on the road to take on the Detroit Lions (4-6) on Thanksgiving in Week 12. The Lions are 2.5-point home underdogs in this game, according to FanDuel Sportsbook's NFL betting odds.

If you need help with your fantasy football lineups, here's some start 'em, sit 'em advice for the Week 12 Texans-Lions showdown.

Duke Johnson Fantasy

Start Duke Johnson, RB, Houston Texans: Duke Johnson has been a popular pickup these past two weeks after it was announced starting running back David Johnson was placed on injured reserve. While he hasn't put up great numbers as the starter, Johnson draws a great matchup in Week 12. The Detroit Lions' defense has allowed 1,230 rushing yards (No. 30 in the NFL) and 14 rushing touchdowns (No. 32 in the NFL) to opposing running backs this season. Johnson has proven to be a threat in the passing game as well as tying a season-high with 5 targets just last week. He should see enough volume in the Texans' offense to be a solid RB2 this week.

TJ Hockenson Fantasy

Start TJ Hockenson, TE, Detroit Lions: Quickly becoming one of quarterback Matthew Stafford's favorite targets, Hockenson has turned into a must-start tight end every week. He is averaging 7.25 targets over the past four games and has surpassed 50 receiving yards six different times now. The Texans have given up 547 yards to opposing tight ends this season (T-No. 23 in the NFL) and a staggering 11.6 yards per reception. Hockenson is second on the team with 12 redzone targets so far this season and could easily find the endzone in this favorable matchup.

Jordan Akins Fantasy

Sit Jordan Akins, TE, Houston Texans: Jordan Akins had his best game of the season last week hauling in 5 of 6 targets for 83 yards. He acted as a security blanket for quarterback DeShaun Watson and is a viable streaming option for teams in need of tight end help. However, he draws a tough matchup this week as the Lions' defense has been able to shut down the tight end position all season long. Detroit has allowed just 344 yards to opposing tight ends (No. 2 in the NFL) on just 33 receptions (No. 3 in the NFL). If you're looking for a streaming tight end this week, it would be best to avoid Akins in this matchup.

Kerryon Johnson Fantasy

Sit Kerryon Johnson, RB, Detroit Lions: Kerryon Johnson ended up seeing a bulk of the running back workload last week with starting rookie D'Andre Swift out battling a concussion. While he played in 70% of the offensive snaps, Johnson totaled just 38 yards on 8 touches and was outcarried by veteran Adrian Peterson. Heading into this Thanksgiving matchup, Swift remains in the NFL concussion protocol. Whether he is active or not, there shouldn't be a lot of confidence surrounding the idea of starting Johnson in fantasy this week. The Lions have proven to be a pass-first type of offense all season, which makes Johnson nothing more than a bench stash for now.


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Larry Rupp is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Larry Rupp also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username phillyfan424. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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