Start or Sit? Week 13′s Toughest Calls

Posted by andrew on December, 1st 2012

With the fantasy playoffs fast approaching, there’s a lot on the line this weekend. Whether you’re jockeying for seeding or sitting on the postseason bubble, your squad’s week 13 performance can go a long way towards setting the table for a run to fake football glory.

 

Of course, one of the obstacles standing in your way is a predictably tough set of lineup decisions at RB & WR. There are plenty of questions marks for fantasy owners this week, whether due to inconsistency (Denarius Moore, Larry Fitzgerald, etc), same-team competition (Marcel Reece, Darren McFadden) or new-found opportunity (DeAngelo Williams, Knowshon Moreno, etc).

 

To help out with your decisions, we’ve called on several Featured Pros to rank (Flex-style) 18 of the most-questioned players this week. The experts will also share their thoughts on who they like best from the list as well as which players are on bust alert for week 13.

 

Featured Pros

John Paulsen – (4for4.com)

Jody Smith – (Gridiron Experts)

Ross Miles – (Pro Football Focus)

Alan Harrison – (The Fantasy Fix)

 

Week 13 Players (STD Scoring)

 

 Player  Position  Matchup  Consensus Rank  Best Rank  Worst Rank
 Ahmad Bradshaw  RB  @ WAS  1.0  1  1
 Bryce Brown  RB  @ DAL  2.0  2  2
 Knowshon Moreno  RB  vs. TB  4.3  3  6
 Marcel Reece  RB  vs. CLE  5.3  3  8
 Beanie Wells  RB  @ NYJ  5.3  3  9
 Cecil Shorts  WR  @ BUF  5.8  3  8
 Rashad Jennings  RB  @ BUF  7.0  5  10
 DeAngelo Williams  RB  @ KC  9.0  6  16
 Pierre Garcon  WR  vs. NYG  9.3  4  12
 Danario Alexander  WR  vs. CIN  9.8  7  13
 Larry Fitzgerald  WR  @ NYJ  10.5  8  11
 Justin Blackmon  WR  @ BUF  12.0  11  12
 Ryan Broyles  WR  vs. IND  12.0  9  14
 Denarius Moore  WR  vs. CLE  12.5  11  14
 Michael Bush  RB  vs. SEA  15.0  13  16
 Darren McFadden  RB  vs. CLE  15.8  15  18
 Greg Jennings  WR  vs. MIN  16.8  16  17
 David Wilson  RB  @ WAS  17.8  17  18

 *View an entire list of flex rankings from 35+ experts

 

Players the Experts Like

 

Ahmad Bradshaw (NYG @ WAS)

“Now that Andre Brown has been lost for the season, Ahmad Bradshaw’s stock is on the rise. Bradshaw missed practice throughout the week so that he can be kept fresh on gameday and that strategy is working. Without Brown vulturing goal-line carries, Bradshaw should be an RB1 going forward.” – Jody Smith (Gridiron Experts)

 

“Bradshaw might be a somewhat surprising pick as my #1 ranked player seeing as he hasn’t posted a 100yd+ game since Week 6, but he has posted five touchdowns on the season and continues to be a reliable RB2. Interestingly, in his last two games he has recorded 5.7 and 5.8 yards per carry (his second and third best figures of the year), and although he only had ten rushes in both games it’s a sign he is still being productive. The injury to Andre Brown should unleash him for more carries and I’m not worried about David Wilson poaching many, as he has only seen more than three rushing attempts in a game twice this year.” – Ross Miles (Pro Football Focus)

 

“The unfortunate season-ending injury to Andre Brown catapulted Bradshaw’s value  — and to a lesser extent, David Wilson’s — for the duration of the 2012 season. In week seven, Bradshaw received just 16 touches against the Redskins, but managed double-digit fantasy points after gaining 65 total yards and a score. And although Bradshaw faces a Redskins’ run defense that currently surrenders just under 16 fantasy points per game to opposing ball carriers, he’ll get the chance to carry the full load in week 13, giving him the opportunity to finish among the top ten scoring running backs in standard leagues.” – Alan Harrison (The Fantasy Fix)

 

Knowshon Moreno (DEN vs. TB)

“The Broncos created quite the stir on Sunday morning when word broke that Moreno was going to get a chance to start against the Chiefs. HC John Fox discussed Moreno during the week, but few took his words seriously since Moreno has been a healthy inactive for most of the season. However, the team obviously doesn’t trust rookie Ronnie Hillman in pass protection and Moreno proved to be a capable all-around RB, gaining 111 total yards on 24 touches in Week 12. This week he faces a Buccaneers team that has struggled against RBs in 2012.” – John Paulsen (4for4.com)

 

Players on Bust Alert

 

Darren McFadden (OAK vs. CLE)

“Head coach Dennis Allen said this week that Marcel Reece has earned carries going forward and that McFadden will be eased back into the lineup. So don’t expect a big workload for DMC, especially if the weather is as bad as it’s supposed to be. It’s doubtful that McFadden will get many carries in muddy conditions coming off an ankle sprain due to the high risk of re-injury.” – John Paulsen (4for4.com)

 

“If you’re a Darren McFadden owner you need to leave him firmly on the bench this week. McFadden has been ineffective for most of the season so plugging him in returning from an ankle injury is a huge risk, especially when it is being widely acknowledged his snap count will be limited.” - Ross Miles (Pro Football Focus)

 

Greg Jennings (GB vs. MIN)

“It is the same deal for Jennings (groin) who is expected to return to the field this week. A player who has not seen any full-speed action since Week 4 is a dangerous play in these final, crucial weeks of the fantasy season. I’d be surprised if either Jennings or McFadden (see above) saw 20+ snaps, which is about 33% of what they’d usually play. So unless you are really scrambling for a flex start, avoid both of these guys this week.” – Ross Miles (Pro Football Focus)

 

Larry Fitzgerald (ARI @ NYJ)

“It may seem ridiculous to bench a wide receiver as talented, and one that was drafted as high as he was, but Ryan Lindley just can’t get the ball to Larry Fitzgerald consistently enough to warrant Fitz being considered an every week start. Last week, Lindley targeted Fitz a dozen times, but he only managed to catch a paltry three for 31 yards.” – Jody Smith (Gridiron Experts)

 

Danario Alexander (SD vs. CIN)

“The new Charger recently burst onto the scene to become an instant favorite of Philip Rivers and fantasy owners alike. Alexander has averaged just over 90 yards per game over the last four weeks to go along with three touchdowns, but faces a Bengals’ pass defense in week 13 that has yielded double-digit fantasy points to opposing wide receivers just five times this season. Despite Alexander’s recent success, he has the potential to be a bust this week against the stingy Bengals’ secondary.” – Alan Harrison (The Fantasy Fix)

 

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Thanks to this week’s Featured Pros for sharing their insight with us. Be sure to follow each expert on Twitter (click their names above) and visit their sites for additional advice. Best of luck to everyone this weekend!