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IDP Start em, Sit em – Week 13 (2021 Fantasy Football)

by Raju Byfield | @FantasyContext | Featured Writer
Dec 3, 2021

Week 13 is upon us. Thursday Night Football could have been better but still had its moments on both sides of the ball. After throwing four interceptions, Taysom Hill may be going back to the bench next week but was electric on the ground, racking up 101 rushing yards on 11 carries. In the unexpected stat department, Tony Pollard had the Cowboys longest run since…Alfred Morris. On the IDP side of things, Micah Parsons continues to look like one of the best rookie linebackers to enter the league in recent memory and is chasing the rookie sack record, despite being drafted as an off-ball linebacker. Keanu Neal had another strong performance for the Cowboys despite seeing his snaps dwindle. Kwon Alexander looked to be in his 2018 form. Jayron Kearse continued to provide DB2 level production. Finally, former Pro Bowlers Cameron Jordan and Leighton Vander Esch continued to disappoint. Let’s take a look at some other players who can help fantasy teams this week and a few others who may do more harm than good.

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Start em

Patrick Queen (LB – BAL)
Patrick Queen has been heating up lately despite still being mired in a rotational role for the Baltimore Ravens. Queen racked up eight solos, two tackles for loss, and a fumble recovery in Week 12 and has worked his way back into the LB2 conversation thanks to a plus Week 13 matchup against a Pittsburgh Steelers team surrendering the fourth-most fantasy points to the linebacker position. Keep him plugged in as LB2 until he cools down. 

Isaiah Simmons (LB – ARI)
Isaiah Simmons has cooled down considerably since his hot start to the season, falling out of the LB1 discussion all the way down to the dregs of the LB3 conversation. Simmons has started picking it back up lately and should be viewed as an LB2 option for Week 13. He has finished as an LB2 in two of the last three weeks, posting LB1 level production in each of those games. His solo tackle production remains spotty, but he has started making contributions in the peripheral categories, salvaging what would be more ordinary fantasy days. Simmons has a tremendous Week 13 matchup against a Chicago Bears offense surrendering the eighth-most fantasy points to the linebacker position and should be started wherever possible. 

Kyzir White (LB – LAC)
White has been excellent for the Chargers this season and has finally solidified himself as an LB2 option. He may be on the elite side of that conversation for Week 13, thanks to a tasty matchup against a Cincinnati Bengals team gifting the most fantasy points per game to the linebacker position. The LB8 over the last three games, White recorded nine solos and three assists in Week 12 and appears primed for another monster game against Joe Mixon and the Bengals. Start him with confidence as an LB2 with LB1 upside. 

Trey Hendrickson (DE – CIN)
Trey Hendrickson continues to roll for the Cincinnati Bengals and needs to be started as a DL1 option until he starts to cool down. He has a sack in seven straight games and has failed to add one to his ledger just twice all season. Hendrickson recorded two solos, one sack, one tackle for loss, and one forced fumble in Week 12 and is a must-start in Week 13 despite a tough matchup against a strong Chargers offensive line.

Sit em

Zach Cunningham (LB – HOU)
Cunningham has been playing well over the last few weeks but is likely headed back to a bit role with Christian Kirksey designated to return and likely to play this weekend. Cunningham was benched in favor of the hot Kamu Grugier-Hill earlier this season and will likely be playing behind the two linebackers once again this weekend. Keep Cunningham benched for Week 13 and 14 and make a decision on the feasibility of holding him for the playoffs after we see his snap counts over the next two weeks. 

Kenny Young (LB – DEN)
Kenny Young continues to disappoint as a Denver Bronco, at least for fantasy managers. He actually had his most productive fantasy day as a member of the Broncos in Week 12 but has still not shown enough to be trusted as anything more than a desperation LB4 option. He saw his snaps fall back down to the 60 percent range last week after playing 91 percent the week before. Fantasy managers may have been tempted to deploy him this week due to the plus matchup against a Kansas City Chiefs team relinquishing the seventh-most fantasy points to the linebacker position, but the suggestion here is to keep him benched. He is worth the continued stash but should not be in any lineups for Week 13. 

Jamin Davis (LB – WAS)
Jamin Davis is back to playing a part-time role for Washington and simply is not a trustworthy fantasy option going forward. He is going to be an electric IDP option one day but is not playing a large enough role to make good on his talent, even with Jon Bostic sidelined. Davis has recorded more than two solos, just once over the last four weeks, and is barely startable as an LB5 option. Keep Davis stashed in dynasty leagues, but those in redraft formats should feel free to add a more productive option in place of Washington’s talented rookie. 

Alex Anzalone (LB – DET)
Anzalone is in the middle of another one of his hot streaks but remains impossible to trust as anything more than an LB4 option. He has provided LB1 level production in two of the last three weeks but could regress back to his regress back to the mean against the Minnesota Vikings. He was borderline unusable against them back in Week 5, with an interception saving a fantasy line of one solo and three assists. His inability to provide a high tackle count against a run-heavy team like the Vikings is indicative of his frustrating inconsistency. Keep him benched for Week 13 and deploy him only in the very best of matchups, like his Week 15 matchup against Arizona. 

Matt Milano (LB – BUF)
Milano was excellent in Week 12, racking up six solos, two assists, and two tackles for loss. This could be the start of another one of his hot stretches, but with the playoffs on the line for many fantasy managers, Milano should remain benched for Week 13. The New England Patriots, despite being a run-heavy team, have limited the linebacker position to the seventh-fewest fantasy points per game, making Milano look like someone who may produce closer to his floor than his ceiling. Look elsewhere for Week 13. 

Josh Bynes (LB – BAL)
Josh Bynes has seen his production all but evaporate over the last two weeks, unsurprisingly coinciding with Patrick Queen looking like the LB2 option we expected coming into the season. Bynes has three solos total over the last two contests and saw his snaps drop to the 53 percent mark with Queen playing out of his mind in Week 12. Bynes may bounce back up to 70 percent mark in Week 13 but will remain a coverage backer who will likely see his tackle opportunities soaked up by the likes of Queen and Tyus Bowser. Keep him benched for Week 13 despite the plus matchup against a Pittsburgh Steelers team surrendering the fourth-most fantasy points to the linebacker position. 

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Raju Byfield is a featured writer for FantasyPros. For more from Raju, check out his profile and follow him @FantasyContext.

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