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Key start/sit options for Week 12 TNF between Colts and Texans [UPDATE]

We break down the best and worst fantasy football start/sit options for Week 12 Thursday Night Football.

Jacoby Brissett of the Indianapolis Colts calls an audible during the second quarter of the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 17, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images

Injury report update

T.Y. Hilton believes he is good to go for Week 12 Thursday Night Football. The training staff and coaching staff have to give final clearance, but we’ve heard repeatedly that they are comfortable with Hilton playing even without getting a full workout in during the week. Whether Hilton is active or not tonight, Zach Pascal is a solid flex option against a shaky Texans pass defense.

Jonathan Williams is expected to get the starting nod at running back against the Texans. It is still possible Jordan Wilkins gets a decent amount of work, but it’s uncertain what the work split will look like. For now, Williams is the start over Wilkins in fantasy leagues.

Will Fuller is expected to play on Thursday. He has been limited in practice the past two weeks, and has not played since Week 7. There will be some rust, but he is a decent flex option for TNF. Kenny Stills takes a hit in value if Fuller is active.


The NFL kicks off Week 12 on Thursday Night Football with the Indianapolis Colts at the Houston Texans. The Texans are 3.5-point favorites on DraftKings Sportbook, and the game has been given a total points of 45.5, which ranks towards the middle of the pack among games on the Week 12 schedule.

There are a few notable players on the injury report that will need to have their statuses monitored leading up to the game. For the Colts, T.Y. Hilton (calf) is listed as questionable, but was listed as a full participant in practice on Wednesday, a good sign for his playing status. Eric Ebron (ankle) and Mo-Alie Cox are also listed as questionable for the Colts, while Marlon Mack (hand) is out. For the Texans, Will Fuller (hamstring) is listed as questionable.

Texans QB DeShaun Watson and WR DeAndre Hopkins are both must-starts. Here are some other players from the Thursday night game that fantasy owners can consider starting or sitting in their seasonal leagues.

Start QB Jacoby Brissett

Brissett has a solid matchup against a Texans pass defense that has allowed elevated fantasy points to opposing QBs. The Texans have allowed the sixth most fantasy points to QBs on the back of allowing 274 passing yards per game, fourth highest among all defenses. Houston has also allowed the sixth most passing touchdowns. The potential return of T.Y. Hilton (calf) is also a plus for Brissett, as it gives him another playmaking weapon. In his previous start vs. Houston this season, Brissett had his best fantasy performance of the season, tossing four TD passes and throwing for 326 yards.

Sit RB Carlos Hyde

Hyde leads Texans RBs in both touches and snaps, playing on just over 50% of Houston’s total offensive plays while seeing about 16 touches per game, roughly double the eight touches per game Duke Johnson has seen. However, this is not a great matchup for Hyde given the Colts’ ability to limit fantasy production to running backs. The Colts have allowed the fifth fewest fantasy points per game to opposing RBs and have been stout at keeping running backs out of the end zone, allowing just three rushing touchdowns all season, tied for second fewest. Hyde isn’t in a great spot this week and is better served left on the bench unless fantasy owners have no better options.

Start WR T.Y. Hilton

Hilton has not played since Week 8 and did not practice on Monday or Tuesday, but was listed as a full participant in Wednesday’s estimated practice report, a good sign for his playing status. Prior to his injury, Hilton was averaging 11 fantasy points per game and saw five targets inside the 10-yard line in six games, contributing to five TDs. Hilton has a plus matchup against a Texans defense that has allowed the sixth most fantasy points per game to WR and sixth most receiving TDs to WR. In Hilton’s previous game vs. the Texans this season, he saw a heavy 11 targets and caught six passes for 74 yards and a TD. Hilton’s TD reception came on a target inside the 10-yard line.

Sit Colts RBs in standard, but start Nyheim Hines in PPR

Marlon Mack (hand) is out, and this looks like the dreaded running back by committee approach for the Colts this week. Jonathan Williams and Jordan Wilkins are candidates to split the early down work, with Nyheim Hines a candidate for snaps on passing downs. Hines has PPR start appeal given his receiving ability, especially since the Texans have allowed the most receptions to RBs and second most receiving yards to RBs. Unless a clear favorite for the majority of snaps emerges leading up to the game on Thursday, this looks like a situation to mostly avoid given the uncertain workloads.

Start TE Jack Doyle if Eric Ebron and Mo-Alie Cox are out

Both Ebron and Cox are listed on the injury report as questionable to play, and if both are ruled out, Doyle could be in line for heavy snaps and a tick up in targets against a poor Houston pass defense. If the Colts end up having all of their tight ends healthy, Doyle would be a less appealing fantasy play, as he is averaging just 4.5 fantasy points per game and has seen only three red zone targets. Keep it locked into DK Nation for up-to-the-minute news on the statuses of Ebron and Cox.