Tonight’s game between the San Francisco 49ers and Green Bay Packers is a replay of last season’s NFC Championship game, when the 49ers won easily 37-20. Of course, the 49ers roster has taken a beating since then, with more injuries than I have time to list out here. This time around though, not one offensive player who touched the ball in that game for the 49ers will play this week.
In Football Outsiders DVOA, the 49ers rank 17th against the pass and 7th against the run, while the Packers rank 25th against the pass and 22nd against the run.
Below, we’ll take a look at who to start and sit in a regular 12-team .5 PPR league.
Ja’Mycal Hasty, RB, 49ers
Jerick McKinnon, RB, 49ers
Tevin Coleman was forced from their Week 8 game, leaving Hasty and McKinnon as the two main backs. They didn’t put up big numbers, but did see touches that could translate into usable fantasy points against a Packers defense that is weak against running backs. Green Bay ranks dead last in PPR fantasy points allowed to running backs after giving up 236 yards and four touchdowns to the Vikings running backs last week.
Brandon Aiyuk, WR, 49ers
Thursday PM update: Aiyuk is out due to Covid-19 protocols. Jordan Reed has been activated while Trent Taylor is the only fully healthy wide receiver on the current active roster. Reed was a target hog when George Kittle was out earlier in the season and has a lot of upside as long as he can get a normal amount of snaps, while Taylor should also be a strong target with so few options to take away looks.
Aiyuk is the only starting receiver who is healthy for this game. That means he will likely see a lot of Jaire Alexander, but I believe in Kyle Shanhan’s ability to scheme him open enough to get him the ball, because he’s their best bet with Bourne, Kittle, and Samuel all out.
Dexter Williams, RB, Packers
Tyler Ervin, RB, Packers
Aaron Jones is a game-time decision and if he plays, you start him as usual, but if he can’t go, the Packers are down to Williams and Tyler Ervin. Both would have some deep league value, but the 49ers run defense is their strongest asset and we can’t easily predict how the workload will be split between the two. If they rather throw the ball, Ervin may be the best bet, but both have low floors despite their usage bump.