Week 13 Matchups - Fantasy Football Starts and Sits

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Welcome to our Week 13 matchups analysis and starts/sits column for fantasy football. We'll be covering every matchup from every Sunday game to help you make the best decisions for your fantasy lineups. We'll also be updating this as injury reports come in so check back often.

This is crunch time for most leagues so making the right start/sit decision is crucial. Lots of teams in must win mode that can't afford to leave points on the bench. Let's help you make the right choices and get the guys with the best matchups in your lineups.

I'll be on Reddit each Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning to answer all your start/sit questions as well. You can also reach me directly on Twitter @ChrisMangano if you can't wait.

Editor's note: Our friends at DraftEasy are giving you a FREE shot to win $50. Just pick four correct NFL player matchups and win! Try It Now!

 

Week 13 NFL Matchups - 1:00 PM ET Games

Important note and credits about data used in this article:

  • All snap counts taken from Football Outsiders. Adjusted line yards also taken from Football outsiders. You can read more here.
  • Success rate is taken from Sharp Football Stats (Warren Sharp). You can read more about it here.
  • Wide receiver snap percentages and corner grades/stats are taken from Pro Football Focus.

 

Vikings at Falcons

Matchups We Love:

None

 

Matchups We Hate:

Matt Ryan (QB, ATL)

Ryan once again was just OK fantasy-wise in a plus matchup against the Buccaneers. While he's offered a solid weekly floor, the ceiling just hasn't been there. It likely won't be there again this week against a Vikings defense that ranks 11th in yards per game allowed, third in touchdown percentage and 12th in sack rate. Only Ben Roethlisberger, DeShone Kizer (179 yards passing, one rushing touchdown) and Matthew Stafford have top-12 finishes against this defense. Ryan is a fringe QB1.

DeVonta Freeman (RB, ATL) / Tevin Coleman (RB, ATL)

Freeman is practicing in full and is set to return from his two-week absence with a concussion. While he was out, Coleman had 20 and 19 carries, however in the three healthy games Freeman and Coleman both played prior to that carries were split 35 to 25 in Freeman's favor. It's unclear how the backfield will be split, but regardless each are in a tough spot against a Vikings defense that ranks fourth in yards per attempt and have only allowed one top-15 scoring week. Coming back from injury in a tough matchup, Freeman is a high RB2 and Coleman a flex.

Julio Jones (WR, ATL)

Don't be fooled by what Marvin Jones did to Xavier Rhodes. Games like that happen but are the exception, not the norm. Prior to the Thanksgiving game, Rhodes had not allowed a touchdown on the season and was giving up just 1.11 PPR points per target. Jones is obviously an elite talent and you can't bench him, but owners should temper expectations greatly.

Austin Hooper (TE, ATL)

Hooper has at least five targets in four of the last five games, but draws a tough matchup against a Vikings defense that ranks ninth in success rate on throws to tight ends and first in yards per attempt. Only four tight ends have cracked the top-15 against this unit and Hooper is unlikely to make it a fifth. He is in the TE2 range.

 

Other Matchups: 

Case Keenum (QB, MIN) has been one of the biggest surprises at the quarterback position and has certainly locked himself into the Vikings starter role for the rest of the season. While he has been a viable streaming option this year, owners may want to look somewhere else as he gets a Falcons defense that ranks eighth in yards per game allowed, seventh in touchdown percentage and 10th in sack rate. They have given up top-eight finishes to Josh McCown, Cam Newton and Russell Wilson in recent weeks, so the potential is there. Keenum is a high-end QB2 play.

Latavius Murray (RB, MIN) now has at least 15 carries in every game since Dalvin Cook's injury, and has 17 or more in four of the last five games. The Falcons are by no means a tough matchup, ranking 17th in adjusted line yards and 15th in yards per attempt. They have only held two units to finishes of RB24 or worse and have allowed five top-eight scoring weeks. Murray is a solid RB2 start. Jerick McKinnon (RB, MIN) has at least 13 carries in four of the last five games, but only has more than three targets twice over that stretch. Without the heavy target volume he was seeing earlier, he can't be considered more than a flex start.

Adam Thielen (WR, MIN) has at least 10 targets in four of the last five contests and no fewer than nine over that stretch. He plays primarily from the slot and gets a decent matchup against the Falcons' slot corners who have yet to allow a touchdown and give up just 1.47 PPR points per target. Regardless, Thielen has entered must-start territory and is a fringe WR1. Stefon Diggs (WR, MIN) hasn't seen more than seven targets in his last four games and will primarily draw the Falcons outside corners who on the year have given up six touchdowns and allow 1.57 PPR points per target. Diggs does get a bump with Desmond Trufant out and can be considered a low-end WR2.

After seeing seven targets in four straight, Kyle Rudolph (TE, MIN) had just four in Week 13 but did score two touchdowns. The Falcons present just an average matchup for tight ends, ranking 18th in success rate and 10th in yards per attempt, and have allowed only five top-12 scoring weeks. Regardless, Rudolph is a weekly start and is a low-end TE1 play.

While Mohamed Sanu (WR, ATL) will avoid Xavier Rhodes, the Vikings still present a tough matchup for slot receivers. On the year they have only surrendered one touchdown out of the slot and give up just 1.32 PPR points per target. Sanu can't be conisdered more than a flex in this matchup.

 

Texans at Titans

Matchups We Love:

DeAndre Hopkins (WR, HOU)

Hopkins is always a must start and is in an absolute blow-up spot against a Titans secondary that has given up 12 touchdowns and allows 1.72 PPR points per target. Antonio Brown just destroyed this secondary to the tune of 10 catches, 144 yards and three touchdowns. Hopkins is an easy start and could finish as the overall WR1.

Bruce Ellington (WR, HOU)

Ellington has eight targets in three of the last four and no fewer than seven over that stretch. He ranks 13th for all receivers in targets over that stretch and gets a great matchup out of the slot against the Titans nickel corners that have given up five touchdowns and allow 1.99 PPR points per target. He hasn't done much with those targets, but Ellington is still on the WR3 radar this week.

Marcus Mariota (QB, TEN)

It's hard to trust Mariota right now; he has looked a long way from the form he showed in 2016. Still, he's in a prime spot against a Texans defense that ranks 24th in yards per game and 29th in touchdown percentage. They have allowed six top-ten scoring weeks including four of the last five, holding only Joe Flacco out of the top ten. Despite his struggles, Mariota has to be considered a fringe QB1.

Rishard Matthews (WR, TEN)

Matthews has been limited in practice with a hamstring injury, but if he plays he is in a great spot. Playing 80% of his snaps from the slot or the right, he will mostly line up against Jonathan Joseph and Kareem Jackson. On the season they have combined to give up six touchdowns and 1.98 PPR points per target. If Matthews plays he should be considered a WR2 with upside.

Corey Davis (WR, TEN)

Davis disappointed as the Titans number one receiver with Matthews out and will likely benefit from Matthews' return. He gets a great matchup this week against the Texans outside corners who have allowed nine touchdowns and give up 1.97 PPR points per target. There is risk in Davis and even in a good matchup he can't be considered more than a flex.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Lamar Miller (RB, HOU)

In the first game without D'Onta Foreman, Miller handled 17 carries and had three targets despite missing portions of the game with a leg injury. He should once again handle the bulk of the running back work against a Titans defense that ranks fifth in yards per attempt and has allowed just two top-12 scoring weeks on the season. The volume will be there for Miller but the matchup isn't and he can't be considered more than a RB2 play.

C.J. Fiedorowicz (TE, HOU)

In his three games back from injury, Fiedorowicz has 16 targets but only eight catches. He may find things difficult against a Titans defense that ranks sixth in success rate on throws to tight ends and fourth in yards per attempt. If there's a silver lining, it's that they have allowed back-to-back top-12 scoring weeks to Jesse James and Jack Doyle. Still, Fiedorowicz is tough to trust as anything more than a TE2.

DeMarco Murray (RB, TEN) / Derrick Henry (RB, TEN)

Despite Henry being much more effective than Murray, the Titans continue to use a split as the carries were 13 to 12 in favor of Henry in Week 12. Murray did out-target him, however, four to two. The Texans are a tough run defense, ranking fifth in adjusted line yards and sixth in yards per attempt. Murray is still the preferred option given his work in the passing game but neither can be considered more than a flex start in this matchup.

 

Other Matchups: 

Tom Savage (QB, HOU) has been bad this year. Really bad. He could, however, be a viable option in two-quarterback leagues as he faces a Titans defense that ranks 20th in yards per game and 23rd in touchdown percentage. The Titans have done well against bad quarterbacks, only giving up top-12 scoring weeks to Derick Carr, Russell Wilson, DeShaun Watson and Ben Roethlisberger on the season. Despite the plus matchup Savage is nothing more than a low-end QB2.

Delanie Walker (TE, TEN) has nine or more targets in three of the last five and at least five targets in each of those. He gets a good matchup against a Texans defense that ranks 19th in success rate on throws to tight ends and 25th in yards per attempt. Walker makes a solid TE1 start.

 

Chiefs at Jets

Matchups We Love:

Josh McCown (QB, NYJ)

McCown has been a great streaming option this year for fantasy owners and could be one again against a Chiefs defense that ranks 28th in yards per game and 16th in touchdown percentage. They have been a bit of a boom/bust defense for quarterbacks, having allowed five top-ten scoring weeks and five weeks of worse than 20th. Still, McCown has been good this year and has a chance to post top-12 numbers.

Robby Anderson (WR, NYJ)

Anderson continues to be one of the season's biggest surprises at the wide receiver position, and now has 17 targets over his last two games. He has real boom potential against the Chiefs outside corners who have struggled this year, having allowed 13 touchdowns and 1.77 PPR points per target. Anderson is a solid WR3 with big upside.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Kareem Hunt (RB, KC)

Oh how the mighty have fallen. Hunt was in a great spot in Week 12 against a Bills defense that had allowed over five yards per carry and two touchdowns per game since trading Marcell Dareus, and could only muster 17 yards on 11 carries. He is in a much tougher spot this week against an underrated Jets run defense that ranks eighth in adjusted line yards and 11th in yards per attempt. After a rough start, they've only allowed one top-14 scoring week in the last six games. Hunt can't be considered more than a flex play at this point.

Tyreek Hill (WR, KC)

Hill has at least six targets in four of the last five games, but has been held back by the poor play of Alex Smith. He'll likely need Smith to return to his early season form if he's going to have a good game against Jets stud corner Morris Claiborne. On the season Claiborne has yet to allow a touchdown and gives up just 1.18 PPR points per target. With the play of his quarterback and the tough matchup, Hill has to be considered a WR3.

 

Other Matchups: 

Alex Smith (QB, KC) has fallen back to Earth in a big way but gets a decent matchup against a Jets defense that ranks 15th in yards per game and 24th in touchdown percentage. They have also given up eight top-13 scoring weeks so opportunity is there. Still, given his recent play, Smith can't be considered more than a QB2.

Travis Kelce (TE, KC) had three straight games of nine or more targets before seeing just four in Week 13. He should bounce back against a Jets defense that ranks seventh in success rate on throws to tight ends, but has allowed six top-12 scoring weeks. Kelce is a weekly must start TE1.

With Matt Forte (RB, NYJ) back from his two-game absence, the carries breakdown was 10 for Forte and nine for Bilal Powell (RB, NYJ) while each had one target. The Chiefs present a great matchup as they rank 30th in adjusted line yards and 26th in yards per attempt. They've allowed a top-12 scoring week in five of the last six as well. Unfortunately this is a full blown split backfield and neither Forte or Powell can be trusted as more than desperation flex plays.

Jermaine Kearse (WR, NYJ) has been a steady fantasy producer and has 19 targets over the last two games. He draws a good matchup against the Chiefs slot corners who have given up four touchdowns and allow 1.69 PPR points per target. Kearse is a solid flex play especially in PPR formats.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins (TE, NYJ) had another touchdown reversed due to replay, but has seen 16 targets over the last two games. He should continue to be one of McCown's favorite targets against a Chiefs defense that ranks 16th in success rate on throws to tight ends and 30th in yards per attempt. He is a solid TE1 play.

 

Broncos at Dolphins

Matchups We Love:

Trevor Siemian (QB, DEN)

With Paxton Lynch suffering a high ankle sprain, Siemian will get the start back under center. Siemian started off the year red hot before coming back down to earth, but was able to throw two touchdowns in limited action against the Raiders. The Dolphins present a great opportunity, ranking 17th in yards per game and 30th in touchdown percentage. They've allowed three straight top-nine scoring weeks to Cam Newton, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Tom Brady. Siemian is a viable streamer and a high-end QB2.

Julius Thomas (TE, MIA)

Thomas has at least four targets in five of the last six, and could see even more against a Broncos defense that ranks 26th in success rate on throws to tight ends and 29th in yards per attempt. They have allowed six top-five scoring weeks as well. Thomas is a borderline TE1 this week and makes a great streaming option.

 

Matchups We Hate:

None

Other Matchups: 

With Paxton Lynch under center, the Broncos offense could not do much as C.J. Anderson (RB, DEN) got five carries and zero targets while Devontae Booker (RB, DEN) had six and two. Things should be better this week with Siemian back at quarterback but this is still a tough situation fantasy-wise. The Dolphins are not an overly tough matchup ranking 16th in adjusted line yards and 20th in yards per attempt. Still, hopefully you don't have to start anyone from this backfield.

Dating back to last year, with Siemian as their quarterback, Demaryius Thomas (WR, DEN) and Emmanuel Sanders (WR, DEN) have almost identical numbers. Thomas has averaged 8.82 targets, 5.41 receptions, 65.73 yards and 0.18 touchdowns while Sanders has averaged 8.79 targets, 5.11 receptions, 63.26 yards and 0.37 touchdowns. It doesn't seem like Siemian has a preference and will throw to whichever is open. Both get good matchups this week against a Dolphins secondary that has allowed eight touchdowns and gives up 1.77 PPR points per target. Both are solid WR2 starts.

Jay Cutler (QB, MIA) looks ready to return from his concussion and gets an OK matchup against a Broncos defense that ranks just fourth in yards per game but dead last in touchdown percentage. They've allowed six straight top-17 finishes which makes Cutler a solid QB2 play.

With Damien Williams out for Week 13, Kenyan Drake (RB, MIA) should handle the bulk of the Dolphins running back work. Williams was averaging 8.5 carries and 3.75 targets over the last four games, most of which should now fall Drake's way. Unfortunately for Drake owners he draws one of the toughest matchups against a Broncos defense that ranks third in both adjusted line yards and yards per attempt and has only allowed five touchdowns on the ground all season. It should be noted this line will be without two of their best run stoppers, nose tackle Domata Peko Sr. and defensive end Derek Wolfe. The volume will be there for Drake but in this matchup he can't be considered more than a low-end RB2.

Jarvis Landry (WR, MIA) has double-digit targets in four of the last six games and no fewer than seven over that stretch. He should once again be a target hog against the Broncos slot corners that have given up only two touchdowns but allow 1.68 PPR points per target. Landry continues to be a low-end WR1 in PPR formats. DeVante Parker (WR, MIA) only saw three targets with Matt Moore under center but had eight, nine and nine in the three games prior with Cutler. He should once again see close to that number and gets an average matchup against a Broncos secondary that will be without Aqib Talib. On the season, the Broncos corners outside of Talib have allowed six touchdowns and 1.63 PPR points per target. Parker should be in the low WR2 range. Kenny Stills (WR, MIA) takes a hit with Cutler back as quarterback but is still involved enough to garner flex consideration in a not-too-difficult matchup.

 

Colts at Jaguars

Matchups We Love:

Blake Bortles (QB, JAC)

Bortles is coming off a two-touchdown, zero-interception game against the Cardinals and gets an even better matchup this week against a Colts defense that ranks 30th in yards per game and 15th in touchdown percentage. They've allowed eight top-14 scoring weeks as well. The risk with Bortles is the Jaguars having a big lead and not throwing. Still, in this matchup he can be considered a QB2 start.

Leonard Fournette (RB, JAC)

Fournette only saw 12 carries on Sunday after seeing 45 the previous two games combined. He should push closer to his normal 20 carry workload in a matchup the Jaguars should play from ahead. The Colts run defense is by no means tough ranking 20th in adjusted line yards and 17th in yards per attempt. Seven units have a top-13 or better scoring week against them. Fournette is an easy RB1 start.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Jacoby Brissett (QB, IND)

Brissett disappointed in a great spot in Week 12 and is borderline unstartable against a Jaguars defense that ranks first in yards per game, touchdown percentage and sack rate. Blaine Gabbert just posted a QB14 week against them which was the highest all year, and only the third time any quarterback has finishes inside the top 21. Hopefully you have better options.

Frank Gore (RB, IND)

Gore now has at least 16 carries in four straight but has only topped 70 yards once over that stretch. He should once again struggle to find running room against an improved Jaguars rush defense that has allowed just 3.01 yards per carry since trading for Marcell Dareus. Gore will get the touches but can't be considered more than a flex start in a tough matchup.

T.Y. Hilton (WR, IND)

Hilton only has nine targets over the last two games and can't be counted on against the league's best secondary. On the season the Jaguars corners have yet to allow a touchdown and give up just 1.08 PPR points per target. Hilton should be benched in all formats.

 

Other Matchups: 

Jack Doyle (TE, IND) continues to rack up targets as he has seven or more in four of the last five and 43 over that stretch. Tight ends are generally startable against the Jaguars, who rank 25th in success rate on throws to tight ends and 20th in yards per attempt, although they have only allowed three top-12 scoring weeks. Regardless, Doyle is a low-end TE1 start.

After nine or more targets in three straight, Marqise Lee (WR, JAC) had just two in a tough spot against Patrick Peterson. Things should be easier this week as he draws the Colts outside corners who on the season have given up just six touchdowns but do allow 1.49 PPR points per target. Lee is a WR3 play. Dede Westbrook (WR, JAC) led the team with 10 targets in just his second NFL start and caught six for 41 yards. He could once again improve against this Colts unit. Westbrook is a solid flex start.

 

Buccaneers at Packers

Matchups We Love:

Brett Hundley (QB, GB)

Hundley is coming off a surprising three-touchdown game against the Steelers and has at least 14 fantasy points in three of his last four games. He draws one of the easiest matchups on the slate against a Buccaneers defense that ranks dead last in yards per game and sack rate, and 21st in touchdown percentage. Since Week 1, Josh McCown is the only quarterback not to post a QB18 or better finish against this defense. Hundley is a solid QB2 start with upside.

Davante Adams (WR, GB)

Adams has been the only receiver worth a fantasy start since Hundley took over, and has seen eight or more targets in four straight games. He gets a great matchup against the Buccaneers outside corners who have given up eight touchdowns and allow 1.84 PPR points per target. Adams is a high-end WR2 start.

Mike Evans (WR, TB)

Evans has double-digit targets in four of the last five games, and should get a boost with the return of Jameis Winston. He is in a fantastic spot against the Packers outside corners that have given up 10 touchdowns and allow 1.87 PPR points per target. Evans is a must-start WR1.

DeSean Jackson (WR, TB)

Jackson has eight or more targets in four of the last six and provides a great boom/bust option for owners needing a home run. Jackson primarily lines up outside  where the Packers have given up 10 touchdowns. Jackson can be considered a WR3 with real boom potential.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Jacquizz Rodgers (RB, TB)

After Doug Martin (RB, TAM) left the game with a concussion, Rodgers handled the majority of the work with eight carries and two targets. Martin is in the concussion protocol and isn't expected to be ready which will put Rodgers into the starting role. Unfortunately he gets a tough matchup against a Packers defense that ranks seventh in adjusted line yards and eighth in yards per attempt. Despite being the starter Rodgers can't be considered more than a flex.

 

Other Matchups: 

Jameis Winston (QB, TB) is ready to return from injury and will return as the starter and gets a good matchup in his first game back against a Packers defense that ranks 25th in yards per game and 18th in touchdown percentage. They've only held two quarterbacks outside the top-24 all season. Winston is in the high-end QB2 discussion and has upside for more.

Cameron Brate (TE, TAM) should get a big boost with the return of Winston. In the eight games with Winston this year Brate has averaged six targets and four catches, while he averaged just two targets and one catch in games Ryan Fitzpatrick started. The Packers are just an OK matchup, ranking 22nd in success rate on throws to tight ends and 12th in yards per attempt. They've only allowed one top-12 scoring week as well. Brate is a solid TE2 start. O.J. Howard (TE, TB) will likely be second fiddle once again with the return of Winston and can be left on benches.

Jamaal Williams (RB, GB) now has games of 20 carries, 18 carries and 21 carries in the last three and has added 12 targets over that stretch. He gets a good matchup against a Buccaneers defense that ranks 13th in adjusted line yards and 14th in yards per attempt. Assuming Aaron Jones (RB, GB) can't play or is limited, Williams is a solid RB2 start.

 

Lions at Ravens

Matchups We Love:

Alex Collins (RB, BAL)

Collins now has 36 carries over the last two games and has added nine targets over that stretch. He's only averaged 3.02 yards per carry over those games, but should find more room against a Lions defense that ranks 29th in adjusted line yards and 25th in yards per attempt. Collins should continue to get the bulk of the work for this offense and is a solid RB2 start.

Jeremy Maclin (WR, BAL)

Maclin is averaging just six targets over the last four games, but could be more involved in a plus matchup against the Lions slot corners who have given up three touchdowns and allow 2.1 PPR points per target. With Mike Wallace facing shadow coverage from Darius Slay, Joe Flacco could lean on Maclin more. He is a solid flex play with upside for more.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Matthew Stafford (QB, DET)

Stafford has produced against some tough defenses this year and will have to do so again facing a Ravens defense that ranks second in yards per game, fourth in touchdown percentage and first in sack rate. Only Blake Bortles in that crazy London game has a finish higher than QB17 against this unit. Stafford is a tough guy to bench but owners should temper expectations.

Marvin Jones (WR, DET)

After what Jones did against Xavier Rhodes on Thanksgiving, he's hard to hate, but he gets another brutal matchup against the Ravens outside corners who have given up just two touchdowns and allow 1.39 PPR points per target. Jones is in must-start territory after his recent hot streak, but owners should temper expectations.

Eric Ebron (TE, DET)

Ebron has four or more targets in four of the last five games, but will find things difficult against a Ravens defense that ranks third in success rate on throws to tight ends and 17th in yards per attempt. Only four tight ends have scoring inside the top 19 which makes Ebron a low-end TE2.

Joe Flacco (QB, BAL)

Flacco only has two games with more than 15 fantasy points and likely won't make it a third against a Lions defense that ranks 23rd in yards per game and 12th in touchdown rate, and has only allowed three top-12 scoring weeks all year. Flacco is simply not worth starting in fantasy leagues, even superflex or two-QB formats.

Danny Woodhead (RB, BAL)

Woodhead only has five carries in his two games back from injury but does have 10 targets. The Lions are excellent against pass catching backs ranking eighth in success rate on throws to backs and 12th in yards per attempt. Woodhead is barely a low-end flex in PPR formats and should not be started in standard leagues.

Mike Wallace (WR, BAL)

Wallace has 22 targets over the last three games and was targeted 11 times in Week 13, but will have to face shadow coverage from Darius Slay on Sunday. For the season, Slay has allowed only three touchdowns and gives up just 1.41 PPR points per target. Wallace is a flex start at best in this matchup.

 

Other Matchups: 

With the Lions playing from behind, Ameer Abdullah (RB, DET) had just six carries and has had 11 or fewer in four of the last five. He did add five targets but only had eight total over the previous four games. The Ravens are just an OK matchup, ranking 11th in adjusted line yards and 16th in yards per attempt. They have held four straight units to finishes of RB22 or worse. With his low volume Abdullah should be avoided if possible. Theo Riddick (RB, DET) has only one game with more than five carries and three targets over the last five and is barely fantasy relevant. Hopefully you have better options.

Golden Tate (WR, DET) has seven or more targets in four of the last five and draws the "easier" receiver matchup against the Ravens slot corners who have yet to give up a touchdown but do allow 1.57 PPR points per target. Stafford may lean on Tate in this one and he is a solid WR2 start.

Benjamin Watson (TE, BAL) only has four targets over the last two games, but could be a sneaky start in a great matchup against a Lions defense that ranks 24th in success rate on throws to tight ends and dead last in yards per attempt. Watson is a risky boom/bust play.

 

Patriots at Bills

Matchups We Love:

Tom Brady (QB, BUF)

The Bills rank 22nd in yards per game but just second in touchdown percentage which is odd. What you're banking on with Brady, other than him being the GOAT, is his history in Buffalo. Since 2012 he averages 353 passing yards, 3.2 touchdowns and just 0.2 interceptions in Buffalo. With Brady still playing at an elite level he is a locked-in must start.

Dion Lewis (RB, NE) / Rex Burkhead (RB, NE)

Lewis now has at least 14 carries in three of the last five and double-digit carries in each. Burkhead had 13 carries in Week 12 but only has 10 or more in two of the last five games. The matchup with the Bills is great since the trade of Marcell Dareus. Prior to the Chiefs game on Sunday, the Bills were allowing over five yards per carry and two touchdowns per game without Dareus. Lewis should find tons of running room in this one and is a high-end RB2 start while Burkhead is a flex play based on his inconsistent usage.

Rob Gronkowski (TE, NE)

Gronkowski has seven or more targets in four of the last five and should be one of Brady's top targets against a Bills defense that ranks dead last in success rate on throws to tight ends and 26th in yards per attempt. Gronk is a locked-in must start.

LeSean McCoy (RB, BUF)

McCoy has been a solid but somewhat underwhelming fantasy asset this year, but is in a prime spot for a big game against a Patriots defense that ranks dead last in both adjusted line yards and yards per attempt. They've only held three running back units to finishes of worse than RB15 and there is no reason to think they can do that to the Bills. McCoy is an easy RB1 start.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Zay Jones (WR, BUF)

Jones has at least seven targets over the last three, and led the team with 10 on Sunday with Kelvin Benjamin injured. Benjamin is not likely to return this week which will leave Jones as the team's number one option yet again. Unfortunately he is in a tough spot as the Patriots secondary has played much better of late. Over the last three weeks, the Patriots outside corners have allowed two touchdowns and just 1.34 PPR points per target. The volume should keep Jones in the WR3 discussion but the matchup may limit his upside.

 

Other Matchups: 

Without Chris Hogan in the lineup, Brandin Cooks (WR, NE) has 11, nine and seven targets. He should once again be heavily involved and is in a good spot against the Bills outside corners who have allowed seven touchdowns and give up 1.54 PPR points per target. Cooks is a fringe WR1 in this matchup. Danny Amendola (WR, NE) only has more than four targets twice in the last five but does get a good matchup against the Bills slot corners who allow 1.69 PPR points per target. Amendola has low-end flex value in PPR formats.

Tyrod Taylor (QB, BUF) had a solid outing against the Chiefs but most importantly the Bills won to keep their hold on the final wild card, meaning Taylor will remain the starter for now. The Patriots defense has been playing much better of late and has held Philip Rivers, Brock Osweiler, Derek Carr, and Matt Moore to finishes of QB20 or worse. Taylor always offers a safe floor with his running ability but can't be considered more than a QB2 in this matchup.

Charles Clay (TE, BUF) doesn't have more than four targets since returning from injury, but could be more involved against a Patriots defense that ranks 27th in success rate on throws to tight ends and 13th in yards per attempt. Clay is a high-end TE2 start.

 

49ers at Bears

Matchups We Love:

Mitch Trubisky (QB, CHI)

Trubisky only has two games with 14 or more fantasy points, and none over 16, but could make a low-end QB2 start against a 49ers defense that ranks 26th in yards per game and 25th in touchdown percentage. Drew Stanton has the worst finish against this unit and that was QB19. Owners in two quarterback leagues could do worse.

Jordan Howard (RB, CHI)

Howard had only eight carries on Sunday, only his second time with less than 13 all year, as the Eagles throttled the Bears. He should be in line for a larger role this week against a 49ers defense that ranks 23rd in adjusted line yards and 18th in yards per attempt, and has allowed eight top-12 scoring weeks. Howard is a solid RB1 start.

Dontrelle Inman (WR, CHI)

In his three games with his new team, Inman has 22 targets and should once again be heavily involved against the 49ers outside corners who have given up 10 touchdowns and allow 1.75 PPR points per target. The risk here is that Bears lean on the ground game and limit Trubisky's attempts, but in such a plus matchup Inman can be considered a solid flex play.

 

Matchups We Hate:

George Kittle (TE, SF)

Kittle only saw two targets in his first game back and it remains to be seen how much he will be targeted by Garoppolo. Regardless, he gets a tough matchup against a Bears defense that ranks fifth in success rate on throws to tight ends and 16th in yards per attempt. They have only allowed three top-12 scoring weeks. Kittle is a fringe TE2 start.

 

Other Matchups: 

Jimmy Garoppolo (QB, SF) will make his first start with his new team and draws a semi-tough matchup against a Bears defense that ranks 12th in yards per game, 13th in touchdown percentage and seventh in sack rate. They have given up back-to-back top-11 scoring weeks, albeit to Carson Wentz and Matthew Stafford. Still, opportunity was there and Garoppolo is a solid QB2 start.

Carlos Hyde (RB, SF) handled 16 carries and saw 13 targets (!!) in Week 12, but did little with them. It remains to be seen how having Garapolo under center will affect his target share but he should remain heavily involved. The Bears are an OK matchup ranking 25th in adjusted line yards but 13th in yards per attempt. Still, Hyde is one of the few workhorse backs still standing and is a low-end RB1 play.

It remains to be seen how the target share will play out with Garoppolo at quarterback, but Marquise Goodwin (WR, SF) does have six or more targets in three of the last five. The Bears are by no means a shut-down passing defense, but owners hopefully have better options while we wait to see how the offense looks.

 

NFL Week 13 Matchups - 4:00 PM ET Games

Browns at Chargers

Matchups We Love:

Isaiah Crowell (RB, CLE)

Crowell now has 16 or more carries in three of the last five games and continues to handle the bulk of the teams carries. He gets one of the softest matchups on the slate against a Chargers defense that ranks 31st in yards per attempt and has allowed six top-12 scoring weeks. Crowell is a solid RB2 start with upside.

Philip Rivers (QB, LAC)

Rivers now has at least 16 fantasy points in three straight and is coming off a monster 434 yard, three touchdown performance on Thanksgiving. He gets a cake matchup this week against a Browns defense that ranks 13th in yards per game but 31st in touchdown percentage. They have allowed six top-12 scoring weeks and Rivers should make it a seventh. He is a solid QB1 start.

Keenan Allen (WR, LAC)

After getting only 19 targets over three games, Allen now has 27 over the last two. He's been destroying opposing defenses and could do so once again against the Browns slot corners who allow 1.71 PPR points per target. Allen is a locked-in must start.

Hunter Henry (TE, LAC)

Henry has five targets in back-to-back games and gets an OK matchup gets a great matchup against a Browns defense that ranks 31st in success rate on throws to tight ends and has allowed 10 top-14 finishes and eight top-12 finishes. Henry is a low-end TE1.

 

Matchups We Hate:

DeShone Kizer (QB, CLE)

Another week, another tough spot for Kizer. Kizer did put up a 20 point game against a tough Bengals defense but will be hard pressed to duplicate that against a Chargers defense that ranks seventh in yards per game, and sixth in touchdown percentage and sack rate. Kizer is a tough start in all formats.

Corey Coleman (WR, CLE)

Coleman has 19 targets in his two games back from injury, and has put up 23 PPR points against two of the toughest pass defenses. He'll get another tough test this week as he is likely to be shadowed by Casey Hayward. On the year, Hayward has allowed just two touchdowns and gives up only 1.32 PPR points per target. Coleman should once again be Kizer's number one option but the matchup makes him little more than a flex start.

Melvin Gordon (RB, LAC)

Gordon has back-to-back games with 20 or more carries but gets a tough matchup against a Browns defense that is one of the best at stopping the run. They rank second in both adjusted line yards and yards per attempt, and have held six units to finishes of RB19 or worse. Gordon's value has been hampered by the emergence of Austin Ekeler (RB, LAC) in the passing game as well. Despite the tough matchup Gordon is still a must start running back, but owners should temper expectations.

 

Other Matchups:

Duke Johnson (RB, CLE) has five or more targets in five straight games, and gets an OK matchup against a Chargers defense that ranks 12th in success rate on throws to running backs and 18th in yards per attempt. Johnson is a solid flex play in PPR formats.

Josh Gordon (WR, CLE) is set to make his first NFL start in over two years, and while we've seen his immense talent and upside, it's just too risky to start him. Grab him off the waivers and give him at least one week to see how he looks.

David Njoku (TE, CLE) has now out-targeted Seth DeValve (TE, CLE) in four of the last five games and seems to be the preferred option. The matchup this week is good as the Chargers rank 17th in success rate on throws to tight ends and 18th in yards per attempt. Still, with Njoku and DeValve splitting the targets neither can be considered more than a TE2.

 

Giants at Raiders

Matchups We Love:

Geno Smith (QB, NYG)

Remember him? With the surprise announcement that the Giants were going to bench Eli, Smith will be thrust into the starter role for the first time since Week 7 in 2016. In 30 career starts Smith has 36 interceptions and has been sacked 77 times, and has thrown only 28 touchdowns. Despite a great matchup against a Raiders defense that ranks 27th in yards allowed and 26th in touchdown percentage, Smith can't be trusted.

Orleans Darkwa (RB, NYG)

Darkwa saw fewer than 14 carries for the first time in four games as he ceded some work to Wayne Gallman (RB, NYG). With Geno Smith getting the start the Giants may lean more heavily on the run game, especially against a Raiders unit that ranks 24th in adjusted line yards and 23rd in yards per attempt. Still, Darkwa comes with risk and can't be considered more than a low-end RB2.

Sterling Shepard (WR, NYG)

Shepard is set to return after his two game absence with migraines, and gets a great matchup against the Raiders slot corners who allow 1.8 PPR points per target. Unfortunately his value likely takes a hit with Smith under center. Despite the great matchup, Shepard has to be considered a WR3.

Derek Carr (QB, OAK)

Carr may be without his two top weapons this week, but it might not matter as the Giants rank 29th in yards per game and 28th in touchdown percentage. They've allowed seven top-12 scoring weeks. Carr has been solid but not great fantasy-wise and can be considered a fringe QB1 in this matchup.

Jared Cook (TE, OAK)

Prior to Week 13, the Giants had allowed a top-12 scoring week to every tight end they had faced this year. With the Raiders top two receiving options out, Cook is in a prime spot to see a big target share against a poor defense against tight ends. Cook has to be considered a TE1 this week.

 

Matchups We Hate:

None

 

Other Matchups:

Evan Engram (TE, NYG) has only 13 targets over the last two games after having 30 the previous three. His value likely takes a hit with Smith at quarterback and he has just an OK matchup against a Raiders defense that ranks 12th in success rate on throws to tight ends but has allowed seven top-12 scoring weeks. At this point Engram has to be considered a high-end TE2 at best.

Marshawn Lynch (RB, OAK) got 26 carries on Sunday but could only turn them into 67 yards against a stout Broncos rush defense, though he did score. Things will be easier this week against a Giants defense that ranks 22nd in adjusted line yards and 19th in yards per attempt, but has allowed only three top-12 scoring weeks. Owners shouldn't expect another 20 plus carry game from Lynch and he remains a flex start.

With Michael Crabtree suspended, and Amari Cooper looking unlikely to play, Cordarelle Patterson (WR, OAK), Johnny Holton (WR, OAK) and Seth Roberts (WR, OAK) will all be thrust into larger roles. The matchup against the Giants is a good one, especially with Janoris Jenkins headed to IR. Unfortunately it's anyone's guess how the target share will work out. If you have to play them, Patterson has the most upside while Roberts has the safest floor.

 

Panthers at Saints

Matchups We Love:

None

 

Matchups We Hate:

Devin Funchess (WR, CAR)

Funchess has at least six targets in five straight and is coming off a 12 target game in Week 12. His matchup with the Saints outside corners is much tougher with the return of Marshon Lattimore. With Lattimore in the lineup the Saints have given up just three touchdowns and 1.39 PPR points per target to outside receivers. You likely can't bench Funchess, but owners should temper expectations.

Ed Dickson (TE, CAR)

Greg Olsen (TE, CAR) returned from his foot injury only to re-aggravate it in the first half. Olsen hasn't been practicing this week so there is a good chance he won't be ready to go. If he doesn't, Dickson will once again be the lone tight end. Dickson did see five targets in three of the four games before Olsen's return, but has a tough matchup against a Saints defense that ranks 11th in success rate on throws to tight ends and has only allowed two top-12 scoring weeks. If Olsen is out, Dickson is in the TE2 range.

Mark Ingram (RB, NO)

Ingram now has back-to-back games with just 11 carries after having now fewer than 16 the previous four. Part of that is the Saints have played some tough opponents and have been playing from behind. Ingram draws a stout Panthers defense that ranks 10th in adjusted line yards and 12th in yards per attempt. This game should be close enough to keep Ingram involved and he can be considered a low-end RB1.

Ted Ginn (WR, NO)

Ginn had only 12 targets the previous three games before seeing 11 in Week 13. He has sneaky start potential against the Panthers outside corners not named James Bradberry, who have allowed five touchdowns and give up 1.73 PPR points per target. Ginn is always a boom/bust type player but this could be a boom week.

 

Other Matchups:

Cam Newton (QB, CAR) has looked great the last three weeks, posting at least 17 fantasy points in each with a 35 point game mixed in. The Saints defense will get a big boost with both Marshon Lattimore and Ken Crawley expected to return in the secondary. They rank 14th in yards per game and touchdown percentage. Newton is a fringe QB1 start.

Christian McCaffrey (RB, CAR) has only seen more than seven carries once over the last five games, but has at least five targets in each of them. The Saints are a good matchup ranking 20th in success rate on throws to running backs and 17th in yards per attempt. McCaffrey is a fringe RB1 in PPR formats. Jonathan Stewart (RB, CAR) has 32 carries over the last two games and gets a good matchup against a Saints defense that ranks 24th in yards per attempt and has allowed seven top-12 scoring weeks. Stewart makes a solid flex start.

Drew Brees (QB, NO) continues to underhwelm from a fantasy perspective as the Saints continue to lean on their running backs. The matchup this week is just OK as the Panthers rank sixth in yards per game and third in sack rate, but 20th in touchdown percentage. They have allowed five top-12 scoring weeks so opportunity is there but owners should once again temper expectations.

Despite Alvin Kamara (RB, NO) only getting 11 touches, he turned them into 188 yards and two touchdowns. Kamara now has at least five targets in five of the last six games and is in an OK spot against a Panthers defense that ranks 19th in success rate on throws to running backs but ninth in yards per attempt. Regardless, Kamara is a locked-in must start.

Michael Thomas (WR, NO) has double-digit targets in four of the last six and at least eight in each of those. He should once again see a hefty dose of targets and will draw shadow coverage from James Bradberry. Bradberry has been just OK this season, having allowed only two touchdowns but giving up 1.5 PPR points per target. Thomas should once again offer owners a solid floor but his upside may be limited. Still he is a weekly must-start.

 

Rams at Cardinals

Matchups We Love:

Jared Goff (QB, LAR)

Goff has at least 19 points in four of the last five with three 20 plus point games as well. He's in a great spot this week against a Cardinals defense that ranks 18th in yards per game and 17th in touchdown percentage, and has given up seven top-12 scoring weeks. Goff is an easy QB1 start.

Cooper Kupp (WR, LAR)

Kupp led the Rams with 11 targets with Robert Woods sidelined, and could lead them again as he gets a great matchup against the Cardinals slot corners that allow 1.7 PPR points per target. Kupp makes a solid WR2 start this week.

Adrian Peterson (RB, ARI)

Peterson only has less than 20 carries once in the last four games and he still got 14 in that one. He should once again be heavily involved against a Rams defense that ranks 28th in yards per attempt and has allowed six top-six scoring weeks to running backs. Peterson is a solid RB2 start.

 

Matchups We Hate:

Todd Gurley (RB, LAR)

Gurley hasn't topped 17 carries since the teams Week 8 bye and has only had more than four targets twice over that span. Still, he has at least 14 PPR points in each of those games. The matchup with the Cardinals is tough as they rank sixth in adjusted line yards and seventh in yards per attempt. They have held six units to finishes of RB17 or worse. Despite the tough matchup, Gurley is a weekly must-start and is a solid RB1.

Sammy Watkins (WR, LAR)

With Robert Woods out of the lineup, Watkins saw a season high nine targets and had one of his best games of the year. Things will be much tougher this week, however, as he will draw the dreaded Patrick Peterson shadow coverage. On the season Peterson has allowed just two touchdowns and gives up 1.33 PPR points per target. Watkins should once again be heavily involved, but in this matchup he can't be considered more than a WR3.

Tyler Higbee (TE, LAR)

Higbee has only 14 targets over the last four games, and draws a matchup with a Cardinals defense that ranks 23rd in success rate on throws to tight ends but third in yards per attempt. They have been a boom/bust defense, allowing four top-ten scoring weeks but holding all other units to finishes of 20th or worse. Higbee is barely worth a start even in two tight end formats.

Blaine Gabbert (QB, ARI)

Gabbert has been impressive in his two starts, and even managed 241 yards and two touchdowns against the vaunted Jaguars secondary. He faces another tough test with the Rams who rank ninth in yards per game, 11th in touchdown percentage and eighth in sack rate. Only two quarterbacks have a finish better than QB14 against this unit. While Gabbert likely won't make it a third, his fine play of late makes him a solid QB2 start even in a tough spot.

Larry Fitzgerald (WR, ARI)

Fitzgerald now has at least eight targets in four straight, but gets another tough matchup against the Rams slot corners who have given up only one touchdown this season and allow just 1.28 PPR points per target. You likely can't bench Fitzgerald but owners should temper expectations.

Ricky Seals-Jones (TE, ARI)

Seals-Jones has come out of nowhere the last two weeks, and has 11 targets and three touchdowns despite not having played more than 15% of snaps thus far. He's got perhaps the toughest tight end matchup of the slate against a Rams unit that ranks first in success rate on throws to tight ends and fifth in yards per attempt. Seals-Jones will likely need to find the end zone once again to have any fantasy relevance this week.

 

NFL Week 13 Matchups - Sunday Night Football

Eagles at Seahawks

Matchups We Love:

None

 

Matchups We Hate:

LeGarrette Blount (RB, PHI) / Corey Clement (RB, PHI) / Jay Ajayi (RB, PHI)

In the three games since the Eagles traded for Ajayi, the running back splits have been Blount 37 carries, Clement 22 carries and Ajayi 20 carries. This three-headed monster gets a tough Seahawks defense that ranks ninth in adjusted line yards and 10th in yards per attempt. None of these running backs can be trusted in this matchup.

Zach Ertz (TE, PHI)

After seeing just 16 targets over his previous three games, Ertz had a monster Week 13 and saw 12 targets. He will find things tough this week against a Seahawks unit that ranks second in success rate on throws to tight ends and seventh in yards per attempt. They have allowed three top-12 scoring weeks in the last four, however, so it's not all doom and gloom. Regardless, Ertz has been one of the best tight ends in football this year and is a weekly must start, but owners should temper expectations.

Eddie Lacy (RB, SEA)

Lacy returned from injury and handled 17 carries in Week 12 and should once again get the bulk of the carries. Unfortunately he is in the worst matchup as the Eagles rank first in both adjusted line yards and yards per attempt. They have only allowed one top-12 scoring week on the season. Lacy cannot be trusted in fantasy lineups.

J.D. McKissic (RB, SEA)

McKissic has at least five targets in the last three games but will have a tough time against an Eagles defense that ranks sixth in success rate on throws to running backs and seventh in yards per attempt. McKissic has had low-end flex value in PPR formats but owners should look for better options this week.

Doug Baldwin (WR, SEA)

After three straight games with double-digit targets, Baldwin has just 15 total targets over the last three. He will once again find things difficult against the Eagles slot corners who have allowed just one touchdown on the year and give up 1.35 PPR points per target. You likely can't bench Baldwin but owners should temper expectations.

Jimmy Graham (TE, SEA)

Graham has six or more targets in four of the last six, and has 17 red zone targets over that span. The Eagles are a tough matchup for tight ends, ranking eighth in success rate on throws to the position and yards per attempt. Only three tight ends have cracked a top-12 scoring week. Regardless, Graham has been one of the best at the position and is an every week start regardless of matchup.

 

Other Matchups:

While the Seahawks "Legion of Boom" is decimated by injury, they are still not a cream puff matchup. Carson Wentz (QB, PHI) has been playing exceptional but may still be tested against a unit that held Matt Ryan to a QB16 finish without Richard Sherman and Kam Chancellor. While this may not be a blow up spot for Wentz, he is matchup proof at this point and is a weekly must start.

Alshon Jeffery (WR, PHI) has eight or more targets in three of the last five, and despite the loss of Richard Sherman, this secondary is still not an easy matchup. Without Sherman they have only allowed two touchdowns to outside receivers and give up 1.41 PPR points per target. Despite that, Jeffrey should remain in the WR2 discussion. Nelson Agholor (WR, PHI) has five or less targets in four of the last five, and doesn't have more than six over that stretch. He gets an OK matchup against the Seahawks slot corners who allow 1.44 PPR points per target. Agholor is nothing more than a low-end flex in PPR formats.

Russell Wilson (QB, SEA) is quite literally doing it all for this team and deserves to be in the MVP discussion. He'll likely once again be counted on to do it all and gets an Eagles defense that ranks 16th in yards and ninth in touchdown percentage, but has only faced two "elite" passers. In Week 6, Cam Newton threw for 239 yards and a touchdown and added 71 yards on the ground with a rushing touchdown. In Week 7, Kirk Cousins threw for 303 yards and three touchdowns. Opportunity will be there for Wilson and he is a locked-in must start.

Paul Richardson (WR, SEA) has 15 targets over the last two games and has clearly emerged as the Seahawks number two receiver. He is in an OK spot this week as the Eagles outside corners allow 1.46 PPR points per target but have given up eight touchdowns. Richardson makes a solid flex start.

 

More Week 13 Lineup Prep