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Lineup Prep: Week 13

Wed Nov 30 10:13am ET
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer

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Lawrence is playing at high level


It is crunch time for a lot of fantasy owners. We are nearing the end of the regular season in many formats, so all these upcoming games are so crucial to a lot of fantasy owners. Hopefully, your roster is in good shape and ready to make a run in the playoffs. It should be a fun finish to the season. 

Now for my random thoughts for the week. . . .

To me, it really looks like the light has come on for Trevor Lawrence. He had maybe his best game as a pro last week, leading his team to an exciting victory with time running out. Confidence goes a long way and it sure seems Lawrence is brimming with that right now. And if you look at this schedule, Lawrence fantasy owners should be brimming with confidence as well. He has games against the Lions, Titans the next two and championship week has him against the Texans. Lawrence could be a difference maker in this year’s fantasy playoffs. 

It is never too early to start planning ahead. So if you stream defenses or kickers, start looking at the teams with the best playoff schedules and plan accordingly. You might have extra room on your roster to start stashing players/teams with good schedules for the playoffs. A proactive owners is a winning owner. 

The tight end position seems like a dart throw every week outside of Travis Kelce and Mark Andrews. This position has been a tough one this year. Some guys have played well at times, but the consistency has not been there. I’m going to be anxious to see the numbers after the season of championship teams that owned Kelce. I have a feeling it is going to be pretty high with the season he is having and the huge disparity between him and the rest of the tight ends. 

Austin Ekeler is first overall in fantasy running back scoring and has run for just 554 yards. He has fewer than seven carries two of his last three games. That doesn’t mean a whole lot when you are posting reception numbers better than nearly every player in the league, including receivers. Ekeler has 80 catches on the year, including three games with double-digit receptions. He is so consistent because of his reception totals. Plus, he finds the end zone often on a team that puts up a lot of points. Ekeler might be the perfect fantasy back because of the way he accumulates his points. He is so safe for fantasy teams. 

I know I have spoken about him before, but I can’t get over the season Geno Smith is having. This really came out of nowhere. It is crazy to think how good he has been this year. He is sixth overall in fantasy quarterback scoring. He has multiple touchdowns five straight games and all but two this year. He had his third 300-yard game last week. And he has 20-plus fantasy points four straight. Smit has been so consistent all season, which is all you can ask for as a fantasy owner. I didn’t know if he could sustain his play all year, but I’m a believer. He is a legit QB1 and top-10 fantasy quarterback. 

Smith has been a huge surprise in a good way at the quarterback spot, but Matt Ryan is the exact opposite. I had high hopes for him this year in Indy, but he looks awful right now. Ryan seems to be bracing for a hit every time he drops back to pass. And he rarely attempts a pass more than 10 yards. I didn’t think he would fall this far so quickly. I expected him to be a good stopgap for the Colts and play near the Philip Rivers level for the team. Well, that hasn’t been the case at all. Ryan has been a huge disappointment for me.  

News and Notes: The Chiefs signed running back Melvin Gordon to their practice squad. Gordon has the potential to eventually earn some playing time with his new team. . . . .The Bears signed safety Adrian Colbert on Tuesday. The veteran gives the team some much needed depth at the position after the injury to starter Eddie Jackson.

HOT PLAY

Trevor Lawrence, QB, Jaguars. Lawrence is playing the best football of his career right now. He is fifth in fantasy quarterback scoring his last three and ninth overall. He has 20-plus fantasy points three straight and five of six games. He scored a season-high 29.2 fantasy points last week, throwing for 321 yards and three scores. He can keep his hot ways this week against the Lions. Detroit allows the most fantasy points to quarterbacks and rank 29th overall against the pass. 

Josh Jacobs, RB, Raiders. Jacobs is now second overall in fantasy running back scoring after his huge game last week. He topped 300 total yards and had maybe the best game of the entire season for any running back. Jacobs is a set it and forget it fantasy play. He has four games with 30-plus fantasy points. Jacobs could have another one of his huge games this week against a bad Chargers run defense. Los Angeles aloes the fifth most fantasy points to running backs and 28th overall against the run. 

Treylon Burks, WR, Titans. Burks is quickly emerging as an elite receiver. He is growing on a weekly basis and has 70-plus yards each of his last two games. He has 17-plus fantasy points each of those games. Burks is almost a low-end WR1 with Ryan Tannehill back in the lineup and throwing him passes. He gets a tough matchup this week against the Eagles, but remains a good play for fantasy teams. The Titans are going to need to score some points and could be playing from behind, so look for Burks to get plenty of work in this one. Don’t be scared to use him because of the tough matchup. 

David Montgomery, RB, Bears. Montgomery has played well since getting the bulk of the carries with Khalil Herbert out of the lineup. He has 100-plus total yards each of his last two games. And he has topped 14 fantasy points each of those games. He is a low-end No. 1 fantasy back in his current role. Montgomery plays the Packers, a team he had his only 100-yard rushing performance against this year in Week 2. The Packers are just 31st against the run, allowing 154.8-rushing yards per game. 

George Pickens, WR, Steelers. Pickens is another young receiver coming into his own. He has been rock solid with Kenny Pickett as his starting quarterback. He has double-digit fantasy points three straight and four of five games. He has a knack for the acrobatic catch every week, showing his big-tie ability. He can hit double-digit fantasy points once again this week against the Falcons, a team that allows the third most fantasy points to receivers and are 28th overall against the pass. 

COLD PLAYS 

Demarcus Robinson, WR, Ravens. Robinson has showing flashes of big things lately, having 12-plus fantasy points two of four games. He also has disappeared at times, catching just a pass for 17 yards last week. He is a hit or miss fantasy play. Look for a miss this week. Robinson has a really tough matchup against a very good Broncos defense. Denver allows the second fewest fantasy points to receivers and are third overall against the pass.

Michael Pittman, WR, Colts. Pittman has produced despite getting poor quarterback play. He has double-digit fantasy points three straight games. He was targeted 11 times last week, giving him double-digit targets three games. He has put up a few stinkers, though, having fewer than 6.5 fantasy points two games. He is a tough player to bench but this might be a week to consider it. Pittman plays the Cowboys, a team that is first overall against the pass. Dallas allows just 177.7-passing yards per game.

Mac Jones, QB, Patriots. Jones played his best game of the season last week, throwing for 382 yards and two touchdowns. That was against a really bad Vikings secondary, though. Remember, Jones had fewer than 15 fantasy points three straight games before last week. He has some potential going forward, but is likely a matchup play. Jones gets the Bills in Week 13, a team that allows the eighth fewest fantasy points to quarterbacks. The Bills have allowed just 14-passing touchdowns and have 13 interceptions, which leads the league. This is not a week to use Jones. 

Jeff Wilson, RB, Dolphins. Wilson had his worst game as a Dolphin last week, rushing 13 times for just 39 yards. He did find the end zone, which saved his fantasy day. It would not surprise to see him struggle this week, though. Wilson gets his old team, the 49ers. San Francisco allows the second fewest fantasy points to running backs and the fewest rushing yards in football. Wilson might be a player to consider benching despite his strong play since joining the Dolphins.

Devin Singletary, RB, Bills. Singletary played well last week but didn’t hit double-digit fantasy points despite rushing 14 times for 72 yards. He continues to get little work in the passing game, having just four catches his last three games. His lack of work in the passing game really hurts his fantasy ceiling. He might not find much room to run this week, which is a concern for his fantasy value. He has a tough matchup, playing the Patriots. New England allows the fewest fantasy points to running backs.

SLEEPERS

Kyren Williams, RB, Rams. Williams is emerging in the Rams backfield and could be the starter the rest of the way. He played a season high 70 percent of the snaps last week. He had 14 touches for 60 yards. The Rams are a mess right now, but Williams still has fantasy value. He can help fantasy teams as a flex play, especially this week against the Seahawks. Seattle allows the third most fantasy points to running backs and are 29th overall against the run. 

Olamide Zaccheaus, WR, Falcons. Zaccheaus had his best game of the season last week, catching five passes for 91 yards on eight targets. This wasn’t his first good fantasy game, though, having three games with double-digit fantasy points. He has produced at times. And his chances could be rising now with Kyle Pitts out of the lineup. Zaccheaus could be worth a flier this week against the Steelers, a team that allows the most fantasy points to receivers on the season. 

Juwan Johnson, TE, Saints. Johnson was a bust last week, failing to catch a pass on just two targets. He was playing great before that, though, having at least 12 fantasy points three straight games. He has become a big part of the passing game despite last week. Look for a rebound game this week against the Bucs. Tampa allows the fifth most fantasy points to tight ends. And earlier this year, Johnson tied a season high with seven targets against the Bucs in Week 2. 

Mike White, QB, Jets. White was tremendous in his first start of the year, going 22-of-28 for 315 yards and three touchdowns against a pretty good Bears pass defense. He made good decisions and was decisive with the football. He has shown a knack for the big game throughout his career when getting a chance to start. He might have another good showing this week against the Vikings. Minnesota has struggled against the pass much of the year and allow the fifth most fantasy points to quarterbacks. If you are looking for a streaming option in Week 13, White is worth consideration. 

Kendall Hinton, WR, Broncos. Hinton has at least three catches three straight games and at least 8.7 fantasy points each of those games. His numbers aren’t off the charts, but he is getting the looks and producing some. He also is on the field a ton, which is encouraging. He has played at least 88 percent of the snaps three straight games. We think he can hit double-digit fantasy points this week against a bad Ravens secondary. Baltimore allows the sixth most fantasy points to receivers and are 27th overall against the pass.

High/Low Scoring Games

Each week we will take a look at some of the high and low scoring games for the coming week. In high scoring affairs, get your marginal players on those teams in your lineup to take advantage of the possible points barrage. And in the low scoring games, keep those marginal players on the bench and make sure to have your defenses involved in those contests.

High Scoring Games: Jaguars/Lions, Dolphins/49ers, Chiefs/Bengals, Chargers/Raiders.

Low Scoring Games: Packers/Bears, Commanders/Giants, Broncos/Ravens.

Jeff Paur is a two-time finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and won the FSWA award for Best Fantasy Football Article on the Web in 2011. He also was the most accurate expert in 2012, winning the FSTA Fantasy Football Accuracy Award. If you have any questions for Jeff, email him at jeff@rtsports.com. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.

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Gerald Everett Feb 6 12:13pm ET
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