Tonight’s game between the Cleveland Browns and Denver Broncos will be short some key players for the Browns. Quarterback Baker Mayfield, and their No. 1 an 2 running backs, Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt are out. While wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. is a game time decision and Jarvis Landry might be activated from I.R. for this matchup.
The Broncos already lost a big chunk of their receiving group early on in the season and now quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is questionable with a foot injury. It does look like Bridgewater will play, but he likely isn’t 100 percent.
Below, we’ll take a look at who to start and sit in a regular 12-team .5 PPR league.
D’Ernest Johnson, RB, Browns
Johnson should take over the lead role with Chubb and Hunt out. He hasn’t had much chance for touches so far in his three seasons with the Browns, but in his very limited work he has been fine and shown an ability in the receiving game. He is likely to see a huge workload with receiving back Demetric Felton spelling him. He’s worth a fantasy start on volume alone.
Donovan Peoples-Jones, WR, Browns
If both Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham Jr. are able to play, Peoples-Jones becomes a tougher play, especially with Case Keenum starting. But, if Beckham, who didn’t practice once this week, is out, I still like his upside, as Keenum is a capable backup.
Tim Patrick, WR, Broncos
With Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler out, Patrick has been a big part of the offense. He’s either hit 89 yards or scored a touchdown in five of his six games and the Browns pass defense has been atrocious this season.
Odell Beckham Jr., WR, Browns
If Beckham Jr. does end up being active, I rather not risk playing him this week. He missed time last week with the shoulder injury and there’s a real chance he would be limited or re-injure his shoulder if he does play.
Case Keenum, QB, Browns
This is a tough week with so many good quarterbacks on bye, but unless you are desperate and in a 2QB league, leave Keenum benched this week. The Broncos pass defense has been vulnerable of late, but they have a lot of talent and the Browns and Broncos are going to slow roll this game. I expect a very low scoring affair with plenty of rushing attempts and Keenum will be asked to not turn the ball over as job one.