Five Burning Questions for Week 13 (2020 Fantasy Football)
Week 12 was bizarre. We had a Wednesday game, a game with no quarterbacks, and the Ravens-Steelers was rescheduled three times. This week is also odd with no Thursday game, a double-header on Monday, and a Tuesday game. We should be used to it by now, but the only thing predictable about this season is its unpredictability. As if fantasy football by its very nature wasn’t already a whole bundle of questions, to begin with.
Let’s tackle some more questions heading into the pivotal Week 13 in fantasy football.
1. What Teams Have the Best Schedules Rest of Season by Position?
The trade deadline may be long over in most leagues, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore looking ahead to future matchups. This is especially true now that we are rounding the corner to the fantasy playoffs. Identifying players on the waiver wire for future weeks and even on your own team will give you a much better idea of who you should target to acquire or who you can drop because their matchups limit opportunity.
Below is a brief snapshot of the teams with the best schedule from Weeks 13 – 16 by position. This is by no means an exhaustive list. I strongly encourage you to check out our Strength of Schedule tool that is far more comprehensive to identify areas of opportunity.
Weeks 13 – 16
QB: Tampa Bay, Green Bay, New York Giants
RB: Tennessee, Chicago, Indianapolis
WR: Tampa Bay, Chicago, Indianapolis
TE: Denver, San Francisco, Baltimore
2. Who Can You Pick Up to Help Replace Will Fuller?
Oh, man. Just when WR Will Fuller blew the top off of the proverbial fantasy ceiling, he has to go and get suspended for performance-enhancing drugs. He is suspended six games and is not appealing, which solidifies that he did take said PEDs.
This question isn’t meant to help with waiver wire decisions as the waiver period has likely come and gone for Week 13. Rather, it’s a reminder to keep your options creative.
First, Fuller was likely not your WR1, but a WR2 or even a flex on your roster. Simply because he is a WR does not mean you have to start a WR in his place if you have options to plug in at different positions. Consider moving a WR who may have been in your flex, such as Mike Williams or Emmanuel Sanders, to open up that spot for an RB or TE.
Also, don’t forget to scour the waiver wire after waivers have run to see who your league mates dropped or who they may have missed entirely. You will likely be looking at boom or bust players, but names like Jaylen Guyton, Gabriel Davis, or even Michael Pittman may be available. Pittman has an excellent schedule for the playoffs and may still be there after a down week against the Titans.
Either way, it stinks for managers that were waiting for Fuller to explode, only to see him gone right before the playoffs. 2020, am I right?
3. What Should Managers Do with Alvin Kamara and Latavius Murray?
This hurts my soul as a Kamara manager and truther, but the trend is shifting toward Murray being the more productive back with Taysom Hill as the starting quarterback. I really, really don’t like it.
In Hill’s debut against the Atlanta Falcons, both backs were near equal in snaps and touches, but Kamara was slightly more productive only because of a touchdown. Kamara had 13 attempts for 45 yards and a TD, while Murray had 12 attempts for 49 yards. Kamara was not targeted once in the passing game, while Murray saw two targets and had two receptions for 36 yards.
That wasn’t all that alarming and could have been chalked up to a weird day with a backup running QB. Last week blew that hope out of the water.
Murray out-touched Kamara 19 to 11, had 124 yards to Kamara’s 54 and scored two touchdowns to Kamara’s zero. Kamara did get involved in the passing game (sort of) with a reception for a loss of one yard.
I highly recommend snagging Latavius Murray, which boggles my mind that he is even available on the wire in the first place. Murray is an excellent flex-start, possibly to replace the aforementioned Fuller.
But, if you have him and Kamara, what should you do? If you are willing to bench Kamara, I give you all the kudos in the world. In fact, that may be what you should do given the trend of the numbers. I don’t know if I have the guts to bench Kamara just yet, but I would like to have Murray on my roster just in case.
4. How Concerned Should We Be for the Eagles Fantasy Pieces?
Very concerned. This is another situation that pains me to accept. I had high hopes for QB Carson Wentz in 2020, but injuries have decimated the offensive line, and it looks like something is very wrong with Wentz’s decision-making.
The Eagles are second to last in time of possession, 29th in offensive plays per game, 30th in yards, and 29th in points scored. Wentz leads the NFL in interceptions with 15, yards lost from sacks with 304 and is second in fumbles lost with ten behind Derek Carr with 11.
Miles Sanders has been disappointing for managers, but many of his woes are because they simply are not incorporating him in the offense, nor do they have enough time on offense. Sanders rushed only six times last week against the Seahawks for 15 yards and 2.5 yards per attempt. He was targeted only three times for two receptions and seven yards. At this point, Sanders is becoming a flex, matchup-dependent play instead of a week-to-week must start.
The only reliable piece on the Eagles on offense is TE Dallas Goedert, but even his production is in question as soon as TE Zach Ertz returns to the lineup. I still think he is startable upon Ertz’s return, but his target share should decrease. He saw a season-high ten targets last week for seven receptions, 75 yards, and a touchdown. Three of those targets (2 receptions) came inside the red zone, and Wentz looks to Goedert to move the chains as well as in the end zone.
Unless Wentz can right his ship, other potential starters can only be plugged in for good matchups, and even that is frightening.
5. What Defense/Special Teams Should You Stream in Week 13?
It’s easy to take the low hanging fruit here, and I will not apologize for doing so. The best DST to start this week will be Miami’s defense against backup Brandon Allen and the Bengals. They are rostered in 90% of Yahoo leagues and 95.6% of ESPN leagues, so they may not be available. Their schedule after this week is pretty tough as they face Kansas City, New England, Las Vegas, and then Buffalo.
Another option to consider is Arizona. They are rostered in 21% of Yahoo leagues and 28% of ESPN leagues, so your chances of snagging them are much higher. They face the Rams this week, who are 9th worst against opposing DSTs and their playoff schedule is incredibly juicy in Weeks 14 – 16.
Make sure you check out Let’s Stream Defenses: Week 13 for Jacob Herlin’s take on streaming options and stashes for the playoffs.
Good luck in Week 13!
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