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NFL Fantasy Football, Week 13: San Francisco 49ers Start 'em or Sit 'em

Let's begin this one with a little bit of a disclaimer. The Green Bay Packers are a really good football team. They've been marred with the odd inconsistency here or there, but they're a threat to blow out any team in the league week in and week out. The 49ers themselves are wildly inconsistent, so any "start 'em," outlook we happen to with in this piece needs to be taken with a grain of salt. The 49ers are not the best option for fantasy football this year, and you shouldn't take "Start Brian Westbrook" to mean "start Brian Westbrook over Chris Johnson," or anything like that. For lack of a better option, is the best way to look at things.

QB Troy Smith

We'll never know what the gameplan is beforehand when it comes to the 49ers. It's a longshot to say that any of us even have a general idea. What we do have to work with is the fact that the Packers have a top ten passing defense in most categories, and Troy Smith's best chance will be working from a moving pocket, on the run, which might just be the gameplan. Dealing with Clay Matthews will be a tall test, maybe the best way to do that is to keep Troy away from Clay, as opposed to keeping Clay away from Troy? Still, I cannot in good conscious tell you to start Troy Smith.

Verdict: Sit 'em

RB Brian Westbrook

Westbrook will certainly be the feature back, and the 49ers will probably go with a run first offense considering the Packers' stellar passing defense, but he likely will not garner the kind of carries he did against the Arizona Cardinals. One can expect rookie Anthony Dixon to get some more carries on definite running downs, while Westbrook will be in there in more a blitz pick-up rule for a good portion of the game. Hard to suggest starting Westbrook considering these circumstances.

Verdict: Sit 'em

TE Vernon Davis

The Packers have defended the pass reasonably well, as stated. They also haven't allowed a ton of yardage to tight ends on average this year, but they have had a propensity for giving up big plays to big, athletic targets, and that's what Vernon Davis is. Davis may be in for a big game here, even if Troy Smith isn't.

Verdict: Start 'em

WR Michael Crabtree

Crabtree is a player who one might consider starting, his style is well suited to take advantage of the Packers secondary. Whether this will lead to a win for the San Francisco or not, Crabtree could still be poised for a big game. It's one of these picks one doesn't have much to go by, but he could be a value start. Still, the verdict remains negative.

Verdict: Sit 'em

49ers Defense

The 49ers defense is coming off a dominating performance and will be totally motivated when they make the trip to take on Green Bay. Problem is, that's probably not enough. The Packers have a top ten offense and the 49ers defense probably can't contain them to the extent that one could recommend starting the unit. It's best to roll with another defense this week, even one that could go "either way," because the 49ers keys to victory in this game lie in the occasional break on defense built around a strong and flawless offense.

Verdict: Sit 'em