Fantasy Football Target Analysis: Week 13
The playoffs have arrived and if you’re interested in evaluating all the NFL targets from the previous week that likely means that you’re still alive, so congratulations on advancing to the fantasy football postseason. This is what all that hard work we did throughout the summer and during the season was for.
All year we’ve looked at every NFL target from the previous week and broken them down, team-by-team. Now that the playoffs are here, a condensed version of each week’s targets seems to make more sense. While some might still be interested in who finished 8th in looks from their hometown team, the majority of fantasy players playing for a title just want to see the best of the best.
That said, using the data from our friends at Pro Football Focus, here are the NFL target leaders from Week 13, with analysis that should help you win this week and live to fight on that much closer to taking the championship in two weeks.
No surprise to see Antonio Brown once again atop the weekly target standings. The only frustrating angle is that a large number of fantasy players were forced to sit Brown due to his uncertain status for Monday Night Football. Brown obviously was fine and now leads the NFL with 141 targets on the season. After a tough matchup with an excellent Baltimore secondary this week, the Steelers get New England and Houston to end the fantasy season, which is a fantastic schedule.
A.J. Green had his highest target total for any one game this season, which comes as somewhat of a surprise against Pittsburgh’s top-8 secondary. All of Green’s production came in the first half, as he was unable to haul in any of his four targets in the second half.
Even Jason McCourty was no match for the red-hot Keenan Allen, who just recorded his third consecutive game with 13+ targets, double-digit receptions, 100+ yards and at least one touchdown. This has easily been the best three-game stretch of Allen’s career and there’s a good chance the streak moves to four games as the Chargers host Washington in Week 14.
It was a somewhat disappointing Week 13 for DeAndre Hopkins, who posted his first game without reaching 100 receiving yards or producing a touchdown since Week 3. Hopkins did command another 14 targets, but Tom Savage was unable to connect with his star wideout on three red zone looks, which ultimately led to a somewhat muted performance against the Titans. Nuk should rebound nicely this week against San Francisco.
Kenny Stills was able to take advantage of Aqib Talib’s absence by repeatedly beating Bradley Roby and Von Miller in coverage. Stills beat Miller on a 23-yard, fourth-quarter touchdown to extend Miami’s big lead. Stills’ 12 targets marked a new season-high.
The most surprising player to see in the top-10 in weekly targets is Houston tight end Stephen Anderson, who was forced into a bigger role in Houston’s passing game after C.J. Fiedorowicz (concussion) and Bruce Ellington (hamstring) exited the game. Fiedorowicz already missed most of the season due to a previous concussion, so he’s likely done. That puts Anderson in-line for a fairly significant role for the Texans moving forward.
Robby Anderson tied his season-best with a dozen looks and caught his most passes in any one game during 2017. Anderson has been a revelation this season for a surprisingly-competent Jets offense. Anderson is on pace to put up a 65/1,095/9 season. Along with Jermaine Kearse, who also commanded a healthy nine looks in Week 13, the Jets have two top-30 fantasy wideouts this season.
Like Anderson, Nelson Agholor‘s resurgence has come as a pleasant surprise to nearly every fantasy leaguer. This was Agholor’s best game of the season in targets, catches, and yards. He also scored his seventh touchdown of the season in just 12 games after scoring just three touchdowns in the first 27 games of his career.
How impressive was Josh Gordon‘s first game in 1,078 days?
The only wide receiver with more than 85 receiving yards against the Chargers this year was Odell Beckham. Josh Gordon hit that today after not playing football for three years.
— JJ Zachariason (@LateRoundQB) December 4, 2017
Up next, Gordon gets an excellent matchup with Green Bay’s bottom-5 secondary followed by much tougher pairings with the Ravens and Bears.
Rob Gronkowski finished third in receiving in Week 13 with 147 yards but is slated to miss Week 14 due to a one-game suspension for taking a cheap shot at Buffalo cornerback Tre’Davious White, who suffered a concussion due to a late hit from Gronkowski. Gronk will miss New England’s Monday Night matchup in Miami.
Ageless Larry Fitzgerald had his third game of the 2017 season with double-digit receptions and a touchdown. What made this effort impressive is that it came with third-string quarterback Blaine Gabbert under center and it came against a Rams’ secondary that had only allowed six touchdowns to wideouts all season entering Week 13.
From a target standpoint, Golden Tate looks like he had a good game at Baltimore, but Tate only managed 69 yards on his eight receptions. As bad as that looks, it was more receptions and yardage than Tate piled up in Weeks 11 and 12 combined, so it’s a step in the right direction. Week 14 offers up an excellent “get right” spot as the Lions travel to Tampa to take on the league’s worst secondary.
Once it was announced that Trevor Siemian was back under center, we knew to downgrade Demaryius Thomas but two catches for 27 yards was far worse than any of us were expecting against a vulnerable Miami secondary. Thomas didn’t help his own cause with a pair of drops as Siemian and Thomas were unable to connect on their first six attempts and Thomas didn’t hit the stat sheet until there were just 29 seconds left in the third quarter.
Dede Westbrook is doing a solid job filling in the slot or the injured Allen Hurns. Westbrook has gotten better with each week and could make a run at more playing time in the slot and outside once Hurns returns. Westbrook is unlikely to eat into Marqise Lee‘s playing time. With 51 receptions for 637 yards and three touchdowns, Lee is a top-20 fantasy wideout in PPR leagues entering Week 14.
The Chiefs offense bounced back in a big way but Kansas City dropped another game. Tyreek Hill led all players in Week 14 with a career-high 185 receiving yards and his first game with multiple TD receptions. Kansas City has a decent matchup in Week 14 at home against Oakland, but Alex Smith has one and only one touchdown pass in each of his five home games this season.
Michael Thomas got two more red zone targets in Week 13 and included a 10-yard touchdown, which was just his third of the season. Thomas’ scoring has dropped off significantly as the Saints rely on their dynamic RB duo to score most of their short-yardage touchdowns.
It was a relatively quiet game for Devin Funchess until he cashed in a 24-yard touchdown with 4:03 left to play in the game. The target and yardage numbers for Funchess were his lowest since Week 8. Up next for the Panthers, a tough matchup with Minnesota’s talented defense.