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Comeback Mode: Upside Plays for Post-Thursday Lineup Deficits

On Fridays after a Thursday night game, fantasy owners tend to get anxious if they have fallen behind after one game has wrapped. That is usually an overreaction, as the results of one single game are not a true indication of where their matchup's final score will end up.

But after three games have been played on Thanksgiving, you may have more of a sense of desperation than usual if your team has fallen behind by 20-plus points. If you are facing a large deficit, you may want to strongly consider using guys with higher statistical ceilings. In tight decisions, you can lean toward the Sunday and Monday players with higher projected upsides for Week 13. We will provide you with such selections here but keep in mind that there may be substantial risk involved, as they may have a lower statistical floor.

For added reassurance, though, we have provided point projections from the RotoBaller lineup optimizer where applicable. Seasonal players should always consult the tool’s projections to help them make challenging lineup decisions. DFS players always want upside, and the optimizer is where you will find it. You can get the optimizer as part of the RotoBaller NFL season pass, which is already slashed in price for the Fantasy playoff push, and using promo code KING will get you another additional discount.

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Running Back Comeback Plays

Todd Gurley vs. ARI (projection: 16.42 points): Gurley is no slam dunk play here, as he has rushed for more than 75 yards just twice this season and has only 21 total receptions. But Arizona always presents a fine matchup for RBs and the optimizer projection should boost your confidence in him for this week.

Phillip Lindsay vs. LAC (14.42): Lindsay always has the opportunity to score a touchdown, and the Chargers have allowed the fourth-most Fantasy Points Per Game in the AFC to RBs this season.

Miles Sanders vs. MIA (12.90): The matchup lure is obvious. Sanders has a low floor, but can be explosive and has the potential to score from anywhere on the field. He is a top example of a home run type of play for this week, as he has yet to deliver the true breakout game we have been waiting for but has the skillset and matchup to make that happen this week. He is a boom-or-bust gamble at the RB position.

Kenyan Drake vs. LAR (12.46): Even though Chase Edmonds is returning and David Johnson could be back in the mix, Drake has a better health outlook than either of them, with big-play potential to boot.

Jonathan Williams vs. TEN: The Titans have allowed the fifth-most FFPG in the AFC to RBs over the past month, and Williams is riding high coming into this matchup with two consecutive 100-yard games.

Darrel Williams vs. OAK: He might be the lead RB for the Chiefs with Damien Williams out and LeSean McCoy looking at a limited workload. It’s a good matchup for a determined and versatile RB.

The Optimizer Also Recommends: Joe Mixon (12.68), Ronald Jones II (11.43).


Wide Receiver Comeback Plays

Tyler Boyd vs. NYJ (14.74): Boyd re-emerged last week to find the end zone and notch 100-yards. The return of Andy Dalton boosts his outlook once again. The Jets have allowed the most FFPG in the AFC to WRs this season.

Robert Woods vs. ARI (13.04): This is a hard one to get behind at first glance, considering the Rams have played extremely poorly as of late and Woods still has a zero in his touchdown column. But the call here comes more from my trust in the optimizer, as I've been burned often before when doubting the tool. The Cardinals have also given up the fourth-most FFPG to WRs over the past month.

Jamison Crowder vs. CIN (13.01): Crowder is the Jets’ most reliable WR, capable of racking up a large number of catches and scoring in any given week. The Jets offense is clicking right now and you can start him with a lot of confidence this week.

Dede Westbrook vs. TB (12.20): Westbrook could have his best game of the year against the most generous team to WRs in terms of FFPG allowed.

Darius Slayton vs. GB (11.93): Slayton jumps out from the optimizer with a Top 20 projection at the position. He is definitely the big-play man in the passing game for the Giants. Injuries to so many other pass-catchers on the team could push Slayton into a more prominent role this week.

Tyrell Williams vs. KC (11.69): Williams has no TDs in the past four games and has not been quite the same since he returned from an injury in Week 8. But this a big AFC West matchup and a chance for the Raiders to tie for the division lead, so Williams must make plays for Oakland to remain competitive this week.

D.K. Metcalf vs. MIN: Metcalf had his worst game as a pro so far last week, but the Seahawks will get him involved again, setting Metcalf up for splash plays and multi-touchdown upside.

The Optimizer Also Recommends: Devante Parker (14.11), Christian Kirk (13.56), Sterling Shepard (12.55), Terry McLaurin (11.88).


Quarterback Comeback Plays

Carson Wentz vs. MIA (19.05): The optimizer has him projected as the sixth-highest scoring QB of the week. Alshon Jeffery is returning, and if Zach Ertz plays Wentz is a prime upside play despite his recent struggles.

Jared Goff (18.25): Perhaps the riskiest call of all here, as Goff has not thrown a TD pass in November and there is no apparent reason to have confidence in him. But the Cardinals have allowed the most FFPG to QBs over the past month.

Nick Foles vs, TB (18.10): Fols has quality WRs and a great matchup but has been historically mediocre as a fantasy passer. He's a true gamble.

Sam Darnold vs. CIN (18.08): The Bengals have allowed the most FFPG in the AFC to QBs this season and Darnold is playing well now that there is no pressure to make the postseason.

The Optimizer Also Recommends: Daniel Jones (17.22), Ryan Tannehill (17.00). Jimmy Garoppolo (16.65).


Tight End Comeback Plays

Kyle Rudolph vs. SEA: He is a must-start considering his recent re-emergence and the fact that Seattle allows the third-most FFPG to TEs.

Jack Doyle vs. TEN (10.17): Doyle has to play a much larger role in the Colts passing game with injuries having totally destroyed the rest of the receiving corps.

Tyler Higbee vs. ARI: With Gerald Everett ruled out, Higbee could pay off in the most friendly TE draw possible. The optimizer appears to be high on Goff, so Higbee should perform well, too.

The Optimizer Also Recommends: Greg Olsen (9.98)

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