Week 13 gets us back to a normal schedule with 15 games after the Thursday night game. I don't think we have the obvious play that we get some weeks, but don't think anyone is in a real bad spot either. The running backs should go fast in drafts, but there is some depth at receiver this week. I have been starting to draft QB a little earlier in past weeks where the depth at the position may not be as strong, depending on schedule and matchups. I think that's the case this week, if you can pull it off. I don't think you have to go QB early at all costs; however, if you are comfortable with the depth at RB and/or WR, I don't mind jumping for a QB in Round 2 or 3, depending on the draft.
H2H or 3-Person Contests
Quarterbacks: I think there are two elite options, though there are 4 in the top tier. My top choice is actually #4 in the DRAFT rankings: Tom Brady. He has 10 touchdowns in his past three weeks and has a great recent history in Buffalo (315/4, 466/3, and 361/4). Russell Wilson is my second choice, though he gets a tough Eagles defense. But, Russell Wilson at home with no run game has such a high floor that I can't ignore it. Philip Rivers would be my third choice, as he will face the Browns. He's in a second tier for me because I do have some concerns about how much he will have to throw against the Browns. If concerned, I don't mind Carson Wentz taking on Seattle with their decimated secondary and a higher floor for him (20+ points each of the past three weeks).
Running Backs: There are three top tier RBs this week, meaning I hope I get the 2nd pick in H2H, and don't mind any pick in the 3-person contests. I still like Le'Veon Bell the best of the top 3. He consistently scoring 15-20 points on DRAFT, and that's without any TDs. Alvin Kamara continues to put up big numbers each week, and did score a TD in limited touches in this matchup earlier this season. Todd Gurley should continue to be the main Rams offense, especially with no Robert Woods. Gurley also did have 140 combined yards and a TD in the first meeting this year.
After that, there are a few options you can look at. If you think the Alvin Kamara run slows down, Mark Ingram is a decent option, though Carolina is tough against the run. Jordan Howard gets the dream matchup against the 49ers, at home. He has struggled since the bye week, but this looks to be too good of a spot to ignore. LeSean McCoy should be busy, as the Bills will have to score a lot to keep up with the Patriots. McCoy has averaged over 80 yards rushing and 5 catches at home this season.
Wide Receivers: Yes, Antonio Brown is the top choice. However, I wouldn't expect duplicate performances of the past two weeks. He has seen double-digit targets in six of the past seven games vs Cincinnati, but hasn't had 100 yards in any of the past five matchups. High floor, but probably not the high ceiling we are used to with him. DeAndre Hopkins continues to see double-digit targets, and his ability to go over 100 yards and the fact he's scored 9 touchdowns in 11 games this season gives him tremendous upside. He did go 10/107/1 against the Titans earlier this season. Julio Jones is coming off his breakout game of the season last week, going over 250 yards. He will draw Xavier Rhodes, who did struggle last week vs Marvin Jones. I think Julio is fine and should build off of last week's big game. Keenan Allen has 23 catches the past two weeks, and should be productive again. However, I don't think he will be as productive with Devin McCourty probably shadowing; limit expectations. Adam Thielen gets the Falcons, and though he didn't score on Thanksgiving, he's getting plus matchups in the slot, so keep using him. Rob Gronkowski (Buffalo native) has put up some big games in Buffalo in the past, scoring in 5 of the 6 games he's played at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Outside of his first appearance in Buffalo, he has put up no fewer than 94 yards in any game. You probably can get him at the end of drafts.
6 and 10 Person Games
If you don't get any of the first three quarterbacks, I don't mind waiting until the end for any of these quarterbacks, unless you feel strongly about one of them. The game in New Orleans with Cam Newton and Drew Brees intrigues me. Cam has the high floor thanks to his rushing ability. I like Drew Brees at home to maybe have one of his better games at home, as we did see Carolina's pass defense give up points to the Jets last week. Another game that has some shootout potential is in Atlanta. Matt Ryan still doesn't have much more than 20 point upside this season but a 15-17 point outing is safe. Case Keenum continues to produce every week with Diggs and Theilen. He even ran in a touchdown last week, and Atlanta does give up over 20 fantasy points to QB. A third game that has two quarterbacks with low floors but high ceilings is the game between Tampa Bay and Green Bay. Jameis Winston should start, coming off of injury, but gets a Packers defense that gives up nearly 2 touchdowns a game and 290 yards passing. Opposite, Brett Hundley is coming off a 4 touchdown game on Sunday night vs Pittsburgh, and faces the Bucs, who give up 277 yards passing a game.
Other quarterbacks you can use: Marcus Mariota, Tyrod Taylor, Josh McCown
If DRAFT was a full PPR site, Carlos Hyde would be in the first section. He's still a great RB2 option on DRAFT, as he is seeing a lot of targets. The only concern is will Garoppolo continue to check down to him. Kenyan Drake will see all of the work for Miami with Damian Williams out. In the past 8 games, Denver has allowed over 100 yards a game and 1.25 touchdowns to running backs, making Drake a nice play. Jamaal Williams will continue to see a majority of work for Green Bay with Ty Montgomery still out. Williams had over 130 total yards a week ago and Tampa Bay allows over 21 points to fantasy running backs. (UPDATE: As I'm about to post this, I see that there is some thought that Aaron Jones could return this week. If so, I would avoid Williams as this could either become Jones' job again or a timeshare that we would need to take a wait and see approach on).
Taking either New England running back (Rex Burkhead or Dion Lewis) is viable against Buffalo, a team that has surpassed San Francisco in allowing the most production to fantasy running backs. I'm not fully sold on Melvin Gordon right now and will probably fade against a decent Browns run defense. Austin Ekeler's involvement also limits Gordon's upside. Finally, two rookie running backs who have been struggling as of late can be had late. I would prefer Leonard Fournette, as the Colts do allow over 100 yards a game to running backs; but, he does have a nagging ankle injury. Kareem Hunt hasn't produced in two great matchups. He now gets the Jets, who only allow 3.5 yards a carry. We have seen his potential, so if you think Kansas City recommits to the run and you want to take a Top 5 running back in many people's rankings the past few weeks, in the later rounds of a draft, you can do so. Just lower expectations on Hunt.
Other running backs you can use: Christian McCaffrey, Devonta Freeman, Marshawn Lynch, Orleans Darkwa, Duke Johnson
Julio Jones had his breakout game last week: Could it be someone else in the NFC South that has a breakout week? Michael Thomas is at home, getting to face a Panthers team that gives up over 160 yards a game to receivers and was picked apart by the Jets last week. Thomas has had a 10+ point floor this season in most games. For Tampa Bay, Mike Evans gets his starting quarterback back and a great matchup against Green Bay, who allow over 28 points a game to fantasy receivers. Opposite Evans, Davante Adams has become the favorite target of Brett Hundley, and he has put up over 16 fantasy points each of the past three games. Tampa Bay does allow 28 fantasy points a game to receivers. Robby Anderson has four touchdowns the past three weeks, and the Chiefs allow the third highest amount of fantasy points to wide receivers. DeMaryius Thomas has a favorable matchup against Xavien Howard in Miami, and the return of Trevor Siemian should help. Brandin Cooks has scored a touchdown the past two weeks and while Buffalo's run defense has been getting attention, their pass defense has struggled as well. Any of the receiving options on Sunday night: Zach Ertz, Doug Baldwin, and Alshon Jeffery all could have big games. I expect points, but figuring out who, if any, will put up a 15-20 point game is tough. The way I listed them is my preferred ranking in that game.
Other wide receivers you can use: Devin Funchess, Stefon Diggs, Cooper Kupp, Tyreek Hill, Ted Ginn Jr.
The early parts of drafts should be focused on those elite RB. After that, I may go after a Top QB, as I think there is a lot of depth at RB/WR this week. There are risks with a lot of those players, but also have some great upside potential, which is what you want in these 6 and 10 person games. Finally, remember that Fantistics has listener league contests going on all the way up until Sunday. To see these contest, follow FantisticsRadio and you will see the $3, 10-man games appear in the lobby. I will jump in a couple of them throughout the week (skeeter1114). Good luck with all of your week 13 NFL contests!