Fantasy football managers are entering the point of the season where they have to make all the right decisions if they want to keep the season going. Having the right running back in your lineup is obviously huge in any given week, but we’re about three weeks away from the fantasy playoffs.
These decisions are becoming even more important, and you can’t afford to make a mistake. With that in mind, should fantasy managers go with Las Vegas Raiders RB Josh Jacobs or Jacksonville Jaguars RB Travis Etienne Jr. in their lineups?
Should You Start Josh Jacobs or Travis Etienne Jr. This Week?
In the Pro Football Network Start/Sit Optimizer, our Consensus Rankings say that Etienne is the player to start. His projected 19.1 points include 92 rushing yards, four receptions, and 40 receiving yards. That projected stat line slightly outperforms the consensus projections of Jacobs’ 17.7 points.
Both of these guys are expected to have monster weeks, so you can be fairly confident in either decision. However, I’m going to go with the optimizer here. I think Etienne could be in store for a monster day.
Fantasy Outlook for Etienne This Week
Etienne is coming off a tough game last week. He had nine carries for 35 yards in the 34-3 loss to the San Francisco 49ers. While that was a brutal loss, that isn’t a game that should scare fantasy managers away.
Every team has one of those “just not your day” types of games, and that was the Jaguars last week. Jacksonville has been playing very good football all year — they had won five consecutive games before the loss last week.
In his previous four games, Etienne had scored seven touchdowns, with three consecutive games with two scores. While Etienne is one of the best runners in the league, he becomes a great fantasy player because of his ability to catch the ball. He has 29 catches on the season for 309 yards and is capable of producing a big receiving play.
The Jaguars are going up against the Tennessee Titans this week, and Etienne figures to have a big day. Look for him to have around 130 total yards of offense and get into the end zone at least once.
Fantasy Outlook for Jacobs This Week
Don’t look now, but the Raiders are currently in the playoff race. While it’s been a weird season for Las Vegas, they look like a different team with Antonio Pierce as the interim head coach.
One thing he has placed an emphasis on is making sure that the team targets its star players. In the last two games, Jacobs has rushed the ball 53 times for 214 yards and two touchdowns. He has only rushed more times in a two-game span in his career, and that was last season after running the ball 59 times against the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks.
With Jacobs and WR Davante Adams, the Raiders have two of the best players at their position on offense — and they’re now actually using them.
Vegas takes on the Miami Dolphins in Week 11, and Jacobs could have a huge role in the game plan. For the Raiders to be successful, they may need to run the ball a lot. That could mean a good amount of carries for Jacobs, although the Dolphins have been much better at stopping the run.
Miami is currently 13th in the league (106.9 yards), but they’ve held teams to only 89.7 yards on average in the last three games. Look for the Dolphins to force the Raiders to beat them passing the ball and for Jacobs to have an inefficient day in the rushing game.
Looking to make a trade in your fantasy league? Having trouble deciding who to start and who to sit? Setting DFS lineups? Check out PFN’s Free Fantasy Football Trade Analyzer, Start/Sit Optimizer, and DFS Lineup Optimizer to help you make the right decision!