Every week, I do the dirty work for you and dig into every Sunday matchup to determine who is the player from each team to spotlight. This involves looking at Fantasy Points Per Game (PPG) and yardage allowed by defenses, along with looking at player usage and performances. I will always have hits and misses, but I will also always have detailed reasoning behind the points I am making.
Week 12 Hits
Below are some hits that had huge weeks or simply out-produced their expectations in Week 12.
- Kyren Williams – 38.4 Fantasy Points
- Dak Prescott – 32.2 Fantasy Points
- Christian McCaffrey – 30.9 Fantasy Points
- CJ Stroud – 30.9 Fantasy Points
- Isiah Pacheco – 25.9 Fantasy Points
- Zay Flowers – 23.2 Fantasy Points
- Rhamondre Stevenson – 21.7 Fantasy Points
- Raheem Mostert – 21.4 Fantasy Points
- Pat Freiermuth – 21 Fantasy Points
- Derrick Henry – 20.6 Fantasy Points
- Stefon Diggs – 19.4 Fantasy Points
- Garrett Wilson – 17.4 Fantasy Points
- David Montgomery – 15.1 Fantasy Points
- Jayden Reed – 15 Fantasy Points
Some notable misses include Adam Thielen, DK Metcalf, Joe Mixon, Courtland Sutton, Kyle Pitts, and Austin Ekeler.
I feel great about my hit-to-miss ratio this season. Let’s keep it rolling here. The intent is to help you win your Fantasy Football matchups, and maybe even some DFS cash. Keep in mind that the Bears, Ravens, Bills, Raiders, Vikings, and Giants are all on a BYE this week. Below are my player highlights for Week 13 – let’s get it!
Fantasy Football Matchup Winners for Week 13
Thursday Night Football
Seahawks vs. Cowboys
- Jaxon Smith-Njigba: The Cowboys are a rough matchup when it comes to Fantasy PPG allowed to all positions this season. One note I want to make is that the Dallas defense is tied for fourth in sacks this season, meaning they are getting to the quarterback plenty. Knowing this, I feel it will be important for Geno Smith to get the ball out of his hands quickly, and the first player that comes to mind with that note is Seattle’s first-round rookie, Jaxon Smith-Njigba. JSN currently has a 6.1 average depth of target, which ranks 95th for wide receivers this season. The rookie has been targeted short for the most part this season. Since the Week 5 BYE, JSN has earned five or more targets in five of his seven games played, and seven targets in two of those weeks. JSN played 75% of the snaps in Week 12 and may end up being the easy outlet for Geno in Week 13.
- Tony Pollard: The Seahawks allow the fourth most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the 12th most rushing yards per game this season. Tony Pollard has had plenty of down weeks for Fantasy Football this season but has finished as the RB12 and RB6 across his last two weeks which shows a positive trend. Pollard has scored a touchdown in back-to-back games and has totaled 10 receptions during this time as well. Seattle presents a nice opportunity to have a third solid week in a row for Fantasy Football.
Colts vs. Titans
- Michael Pittman Jr.: The Titans allow the eighth most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers this season. Michael Pittman Jr. is coming off of a WR12 week, catching 10 of his 13 targets for 107 receiving yards for 20.7 Fantasy Points. Week 12 marked the seventh week Pittman has scored 16+ Fantasy Points and the second he scored over 20. Pittman is averaging 9.8 targets per game and has totaled 25 across the last two weeks. A Tennessee matchup should mean continued heavy use of MPJ by Gardner Minshew. Pittman had a down week last time against the Titans this season but will look to bounce back this week.
- Derrick Henry: The Colts allow the seventh most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the seventh most rushing yards per game this season. Week 5 was a down week for Derrick Henry, but he will look to bounce back in Week 13 after a positive Week 12 performance. Henry rushed 18 times for 76 yards and two touchdowns and scored 20.6 Fantasy Points just last week. Henry has finished as a Top 12 running back for Fantasy Football in five of his last eight games and has a great opportunity in a positive matchup to do the same this week.
Falcons vs. Jets
- Bijan Robinson: The Jets allow the sixth most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the second most rushing yards per game this season. Bijan Robinson has been rushing the football well the last two games played, finishing with 95 then 91 rushing yards and scoring on the ground in both of those games. The 22 and 16 rushing attempts in the last two weeks is encouraging to see, as Bijan rushed the ball 14 or fewer times in the seven games straight prior. Adding a receiving touchdown to his rushing one in Week 12 meant an RB3 Fantasy finish for the week. The Jets are a positive running back matchup, but an extremely tough matchup through the air, so look for the Falcons to prioritize their first-round rookie.
- Tyler Conklin: The Falcons allow the fifth most Fantasy PPG to tight ends this season. Keep an eye on sophomore Jeremy Ruckert whose role has been growing, but as of now Tyler Conklin continues to operate as the Jets’ starter. Conklin has played 60+% of the snaps the last six straight games and has earned five or more targets in seven games this season. In Week 12 Conklin earned five targets and caught four of them as a safety option in the middle of the field. Conklin in a strong matchup presents a potential tight end streaming option for Week 13.
Lions vs. Saints
- Sam LaPorta: The Saints allow the 12th most Fantasy PPG to tight ends this season. Sam LaPorta has been on a tear this whole season, crushing the rookie tight end narrative for Fantasy Football. Week 12 LaPorta finished as the TE3, catching five of his eight targets for 47 yards and a touchdown and scoring 17.7 Fantasy Points. Week 12 marked the fourth week LaPorta has scored 17+ Fantasy Points. LaPorra currently ranks fifth in targets (77), sixth in receptions (55), fifth in receiving yards (539), second in total touchdowns (five), and third in total Fantasy Points for the position this season. The Saints rank 20th or worse in PPG allowed to all of quarterbacks, running backs, and wide receivers this season.
- AT Perry: The Lions allow the sixth most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers this season. Deep league plug or desperation FLEX play here but sixth-round rookie AT Perry may be a case of “the last man standing” for the Saints. Chris Olave is dealing with a concussion, Rashid Shaheed is expected to miss Week 13 with a quad injury and Michael Thomas is on the IR. AT Perry has played 84% then 74% of the snaps the last two weeks and totaled six targets across these two games. Perry scored in Week 10 and may be defaulted to volume from Derek Carr who is currently top 10 in passing attempts (33.8 per game) this season.
Broncos vs. Texans
- Russell Wilson: The Texans allow the ninth most Fantasy PPG to quarterbacks and the sixth most passing yards per game this season. Russell Wilson has finished as a top-12 quarterback in two of his three games played following the Week 9 BYE, and four times this season. Russ has accounted for five touchdowns and has zero interceptions across the last three games. What is sneaky about Wilson is the rushing yards that help his fantasy stock, with six games of 30 or more rushing yards. Wilson presents a quarterback streamer if you are looking for one in Week 13.
- Dalton Schultz: The Broncos allow the most Fantasy PPG to tight ends this season, but rank 28th in PPG allowed to wide receivers. To me, this means the Broncos secondary does a decent job trying to lock up wide receivers but it has meant the tight end making plays to compensate for that. After a poor Week 12 in usage and production, I feel it will be the bounce-back game for Dalton Schultz. Across Schultz’s last eight games, he has finished as the TE8 or better in six of them with two of those weeks finishing as a top-two Fantasy tight end. Schultz has four weeks of seven targets from CJ Stroud, and two games of double-digit targets and has scored five touchdowns on the year so far. Four weeks over 60 receiving yards shows some upside for Schultz as well. Look for Stroud to look for his tight end often in Week 13.
Chargers vs. Patriots
- Keenan Allen: The Patriots allow the ninth most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers this season. You are obviously starting Keenan Allen, but Week 13 may be a week to pay up for him in your DFS lineups. Keenan Allen has earned 129 targets on the year, which is nine more targets than the second (Austin Ekeler), third (Joshua Palmer) and fourth (Quentin Johnston) most targeted players on the Chargers – combined. Allen is currently second in total Fantasy scoring, averaging 23.2 Fantasy PPG on the season. Three straight weeks of Justin Herbert targeting Allen 14, 16, and 16 times has resulted in WR1 (40.5 points), WR4 (27.6 points), and WR7 (22.6 points) Fantasy Football finishes.
- Rhamondre Stevenson: The Chargers allow the ninth most Fantasy PPG to running backs this season. Rhamondre Stevenson finished as the RB2 in Week 9 then the RB7 in Week 12, showing some Fantasy upside in two of his last three weeks. 87, 88, and 98 rushing yards is also a positive sign for Stevenson the last three weeks after rushing for a season-high 59 yards in all the games prior. A big factor for Stevenson’s Fantasy upside this and last season is the receiving upside, and Stevenson has been targeted five or more times in three straight games and six times this season. With the carousel of quarterbacks and inefficiency of them all in New England, look for plenty of dump-off plays to Stevenson in Week 13 vs. the Chargers.
Cardinals vs. Steelers
- Marquise Brown: The Steelers allow the 10th most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers and the ninth most passing yards per game this season. After two poor games with Kyler Murray back in Weeks 10/11, Marquise Brown finally showed signs of life in Week 12 catching six of 12 targets for 88 receiving yards and scoring 14.8 Fantasy Points. 12 targets is significant, and 88 yards is Hollywood’s second-highest total of the season. Brown scored 16+ Fantasy Points in Weeks 2-5 for those four games straight with Joshua Dobbs (now a Viking) earlier this season. Keep in mind that Murray and Brown were former college teammates, and reunited last season Brown finished three of his first six games before injury with over 20 Fantasy Points. There may be momentum to continue from Week 12 in a positive Steelers matchup.
- Najee Harris: The Cardinals allow the second most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the third most rushing yards per game this season. A lot of focus has been on Jaylen Warren and his recent performances, but not enough attention on Najee Harris’s production. Najee has also played above 50% of the snaps in all but one game this season – so this narrative that Jaylen Warren is the team’s RB1 is not exactly accurate. Najee rushed for a season high 99 yards in Week 12, and scored his fourth rushing touchdown since the Week 6 BYE. Week 12 was the fourth time Harris has scored 15+ Fantasy Points across his last six games. Arizona is a smash matchup.
Dolphins vs. Commanders
- Tua Tagovailoa: The Commanders allow the most Fantasy PPG to quarterbacks and the third most passing yards per game this season. Down Week 12 for Tua Tagovailoa, but he has had plenty of big weeks that have translated well for Fantasy in that system featuring Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle. Tua has finished six weeks as a top 12 Fantasy quarterback, and in three of those weeks, he was a top three Fantasy quarterback. This has meant four weeks over 22 Fantasy Points and two weeks over 28 Fantasy Points. Five weeks of 300+ passing yards, and four weeks of three or more passing touchdowns on the year. Tua will be my quarterback start of the week in Week 13.
- Sam Howell: The Dolphins are a middle-of-the-road matchup in Fantasy PPG allowed to quarterbacks, but in a game that may lena on both quarterbacks I want to plug Sam Howell. Howell has finished as the QB10, QB10, QB4, QB10, and QB1 going back five weeks from Week 12, and has been a top 12 Fantasy quarterback eight times this season. Howell has rushed for a touchdown in back-to-back games, and has thrown for 300+ passing yards in five of his last eight games this season showing upside both through the air and on the ground. I really like Tua this week, and Howell is going to have to try to match him.
Panthers vs. Buccaneers
- Adam Thielen: The Buccaneers allow the fourth most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers and the second most passing yards per game this season. Bounce-back week incoming for Adam Thielen. Shocking usage and production last week against the Titans, earning just three targets and catching one for two yards which was Thielen’s worst performance of the year. The game prior, Thielen faced a rough Dallas defense and caught eight of 11 targets for 74 receiving yards and scored 15.4 Fantasy Points. Thielen has earned double-digit targets in six games, finished with over 100 receiving yards in three games, and has scored over 20 Fantasy Points in four weeks this season. In a smash matchup, Bryce Young will feed his guy in Week 13
- Rachaad White: The Panthers allow the third most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the ninth most rushing yards per game this season. Rachaad White is coming off of a season-high 100 rushing yards in Week 12, averaging 6.7 yards per carry in that game. White is the clear workhorse running back in Tampa Bay, playing 80% then 87% of the snaps the last two weeks and at 70%+ of the snaps in every game this season. Four weeks of five or more catches with four weeks at 40+ receiving yards shows the upside in the pass-catching department that is attached to White’s profile. White has finished as a top 12 Fantasy running back in five weeks this season, and Carolina is the auto-start matchup for running backs which means another top 12 week is coming.
49ers vs. Eagles
- Brandon Aiyuk: The Eagles allow the most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers and the fourth most passing yards per game this season. Down week for Brandon Aiyuk in Week 12, but he did score his third consecutive touchdown in a row. Aiyuk was just the WR5 in Week 11, catching five of his six targets for 156 yards and a touchdown for 26.6 Fantasy Points. Aiyuk has not necessarily been the most consistent wide receiver for Fantasy scoring, finishing WR30 or worse five times, but we have seen plenty of upside. Three top-eight Fantasy finishes, four weeks over 100 receiving yards, three weeks over 120 receiving yards, five touchdowns scored and three weeks scoring over 20 Fantasy Points. The Eagles offense is one most teams have to keep up with, and I expect Aiyuk to be a huge part of the game plan for the 49ers.
- AJ Brown: The 49ers allow the 12th most Fantasy PPG to wide receivers this season. WR91 then WR27 Fantasy finishes for AJ Brown the last two weeks have been awful, especially with how much he has been tearing it up this season. Yet another player on this list who is due for a big bounce-back week. In Weeks 3-9 Brown was on absolute fire, finishing as the WR11, WR1, WR13, WR7, WR2, WR3, and WR7 during this span. Within these seven games, Brown ranged from 127-175 receiving yards in six of them and scored between 19.6 and 38.5 Fantasy Points. Brown was simply winning Fantasy matchups. Look for AJB to be a feature of the Eagles’ game plan in a huge matchup that has been positive for wide receivers this year.
Browns vs. Rams
- David Njoku: The Rams allow the sixth most Fantasy PPG to tight ends this season. David Njoku has scored double-digit Fantasy Points for six straight weeks, ranging from 10.4 to 17.7 Fantasy Points during this span. The targets have been solid during this time as well, with Njoku earning nine, eight, six, nine, 15, and nine targets in the last six games. Njoku has been fairly consistent in the receiving yard department as well, with 54+ receiving yards in five of his last six games. Dorian Thompson-Robinson has loved Njoku but suffered a concussion last week which could mean either PJ Walker or Joe Flacco starting. In either case, Njoku has been so consistent in his usage and production that in a smash tight end matchup he should still be in your Fantasy lineups.
- Kyren Williams: The Browns are a horrible Fantasy matchup in PPG allowed across the board, but we should still mention Kyren Williams who I highlighted in last week’s article before he scored 38.4 Fantasy Points. Williams returned from injury to play 61% of the snaps last week and operated as a workhorse with 22 total touches. 16 rushing attempts for 143 yards and six receptions for 61 receiving yards and two receiving touchdowns. RB1 for Week 12, which marked the fourth time Williams has finished as a top-four Fantasy running back in seven appearances. Heavy touches can make up for a tough matchup when it comes to a workhorse running back so we should not fear the Browns in Week 13 for Kyren.
Sunday Night Football
Chiefs vs. Packers
- Isiah Pacheco: The Packers allow the 10th most Fantasy PPG to running backs and the sixth most rushing yards per game this season. I called in several different places (including last week’s version of this article) that it would be an Isiah Pacheco bounce-back week, and it was exactly that with a season-high 25.9 Fantasy Points scored. Pacheco finished as the RB4 for the week, which marked the fourth top-12 Fantasy finish of the year for the Chief’s RB1. This was the second time this season that Pacheco scored over 24 Fantasy Points, and the fifth he scored over 15 Fantasy Points. Pacheco scored two rushing touchdowns last week, and has five on the season. Five receptions was an extremely positive mark for the sophomore as well from Week 12. Look for Pacheco to stay hot in a great running back matchup in Week 13.
- Jayden Reed: The Chiefs are not a plus matchup through the air or for wide receivers specifically, but Jayden Reed is a classic case of “ride the hot hand”. Reed was featured in last week’s article and was a sleeper of mine as a second-round rookie heading into this season. Christian Watson is coming off of a huge week, but do not let that shadow the fact that Reed has been a great FLEX play the last three weeks in a row scoring 19.4, 19.2, and then 15 Fantasy Points in these games. Reed finished with 84 receiving yards and a touchdown in Week 10, 46 rushing paired with 46 receiving and a receiving touchdown in Week 11 and then another touchdown on eight targets in Week 12. A lot of positives for Reed, and he is utilized the most creatively when it comes to the Green Bay receivers. The Chiefs are a tough opponent in general, and Reed has truly earned the right to touch the ball plenty in this matchup.