Fantasy watch: Thankful for Jamaal Charles

Jamaal Charles

Kansas City’s Jamaal Charles. (Larry W. Smith / EPA)

Last week I wrote about the many RB1s who are disappointing fantasy owners with performances well below their preseason projections. Among the guiltiest parties include Ray Rice, Arian Foster and C.J. Spiller.

During this Thanksgiving week though, it’s time to acknowledge the handful of RB1s who actually are anchoring fantasy rosters and presumably leading owners into the playoffs. At the top of that list is Jamaal Charles, whose fantasy stock has risen more than any other running back over the past two seasons.

Charles is coming off his most productive outing of the season, rushing for 115 yards and two touchdowns and adding four receptions for 42 yards. It was the ninth time in 11 games Charles has produced at least 100 yards from scrimmage and eighth time he’s reached the end zone at least one time.

Charles has a difficult matchup this week against the Denver Broncos, who are allowing the fifth fewest rushing yards per game and are yielding the third fewest fantasy points to running backs. But during this season of unreliable and inconsistent running back play, Charles is a must-start regardless of matchup, especially since the Kansas City Chiefs are playing at Arrowhead Sunday.

Over his past four home games, Charles has averaged 132 yards from scrimmage with five total touchdowns. About the only knock on Charles are his three fumbles, tied for the league lead. But that’s not going to diminish his standing as perhaps the No. 1 overall running back in next season’s drafts, ahead of even Adrian Peterson and LeSean McCoy.

Now to a question from the Twitter-verse:

McCoy and Forte are are must-starts regardless of opponent, and I wrote about Foles a few weeks ago as a potential regular QB1 based on matchups at the end of the season, this week included. The Philadelphia Eagles are at home Sunday against Arizona, which is ranked 17th against the pass and has surrendered 19 passing touchdowns.

More fantasy football: AP’s Fantasy Grind says to be cool, even while setting lineups for the playoffs.

Have a fantasy football question? Tweet at Gene Wang at @gene_wang.

What’s ahead:

● The Redskins practice at 10:25 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning.

● Posts on Robert Griffin III and Ahmad Brooks, Brian Orakpo on remaining unified and at 12:30, an open thread prior to the three Thanksgiving games.

More from The Post:

Wise: Kedric Golston has a lot to be thankful for | Hall: Bring coaches back

Giants prep for Redskins holding out a sliver of playoff hope

How NBC will pull broadcasts in Balt., Wash. together

Fred Davis denies missing meetings | Griffin defends father’s locker room visit

Jenkins: Bench Griffin for his own sake | Bog: Brooks agrees | Gruden: Play Cousins

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