Austin Ekeler (70% owned on Yahoo)
He’s probably already owned in your league, but make sure to check if he was dropped. He’ll be the main beneficiary while Melvin Gordon is out, and will see work on all three downs. Don’t let his past performance with Gordon blind you; the work will be there (95% of snaps), and he’s very capable in the pass game. He’s a high-end RB2 for Week 13 and while Gordon remains out.
With Alex Collins being a surprise scratch supposedly due to his foot injury, Gus Edwards took 23 carries for 118 yards. That’s two straight 100 yard games for Gus… the same amount Alex Collins has had in his career and two more than he’s had this season. Gus handled 61% of snaps, and Ty Montgomery was on the field for 40% of snaps as the pass-catching back. Not sure what Collins role will be when he’s healthy, but it’ll be tough to take Edwards out of that role right now. If you have Gus, you’re hoping that Lamar Jackson stays in at QB.. the running lanes Jackson helps create helps him, and he’s proven that he’s a good complement.
Josh Adams (56% owned on Yahoo)
Josh Adams had 22 carries against the Giants, so he did take over that early down workhorse role for the Eagles. He was somewhat successful, racking up 84 yards and a TD. He had a big play called back, so he could’ve been in for an even bigger day. He played on 62% of snaps, while Clement saw 37% and 7 touches. Smallwood didn’t see shit. Doug Pederson said he wants to continue to give Adams more work, so I would continue to roll him out until we see more of a timeshare. This Eagles offense definitely has issues right now, but they know the only way to keep opposing offenses from exploiting their secondary is to keep them off the field by establishing the run. He’s probably your last shot at a legit RB2 this year.
TJ Yeldon (60% owned on Yahoo) and Carlos Hyde
These guys are one week rentals while Leonard Fournette serves his suspension for throwing haymakers. We might find out whether his appeal was successful or not by Tuesday night, but I wouldn’t count on it. In Fournette’s absence, we can expect Hyde to handle most work on early downs, although we shouldn’t expect the same type of volume Fournette had, especially with the OC change. TJ Yeldon will likely be the passing down back in addition to several carries, so he’s the preferred option in PPR.
Chris Thompson (44% owned on Yahoo)
Thompson practiced on Monday, and since the Redskins play on Monday night, there’s a good shot that he suits up. He’s a good add in PPR if you need a back for the stretch run.. it’s not often that you can grab a high ceiling player of his caliber off the waiver wire. It would’ve sucked to hold him this long, but if you can pick him up for free off the wire, why not?
Riddick should maintain a 10 point floor in PPR moving forward, especially with Marvin Jones now out. He has some upside this week while the Lions try to catch up with the Rams. He’ll get a bigger upgrade if Kerryon were to miss again. Remember, they played the Bears last week so don’t get too caught up in his stat line.
Great matchup this week, but don’t count on more than 12-14 carries. You’re hoping for some efficiency here, so a line like 13/68/1 is what you’re aiming for. Make sure to account for the fact that Martin might not score.
If Kerryon misses again, Blount can see some volume… but we have to account for the Rams going up big in this game and the Lions abandoning the run. Either way, he’ll see goal line carries if the Lions can move the ball.
Jackson can miss in with Ekeler, but it’s dicey.. only because Ekeler saw 95% of snaps when Gordon missed a game earlier this season. Since the Chargers will be without Gordon for a few games, it’s more likely that they’ll want Jackson to mix in without giving Ekeler an unsustainable workload. If you lost Gordon and Ekeler isn’t available, of if you’re desperate at RB, take a shot.. you might have someone on your hands who can help you over the next few weeks. He is very capable on all three downs, but the only concern is his opportunity.
Jordan Wilkins/Nyheim Hines
Marlon Mack sustained a concussion in Week 12, so these two would be in line to share an increased workload against the Jags if Mack can’t get cleared from the protocol. Wilkins is the better early down back, but we’ve seen Hines get work in that role with Mack out. I would bet on Wilkins to get the early down work with Hines mixing in, while Hines keeps his passing down role. Hines will probably be the preferred PPR start, but Wilkins will see goal line carries if the Colts have the opportunity to punch one in. Too bad we won’t find out about Mack’s status until later in the week.
It probably won’t be this week, but Burkhead can have a role in a week or two.. but will we really trust him to throw him in our lineups in must-win playoff situations? I know I wouldn’t, unless I’m pretty desperate in a deeper league.
Montgomery saw an increased role as the primary pass-catching back for the Ravens in addition to his 8 carries for 51 yards. We’ll see what happens when Alex Collins returns, but it probably wouldn’t affect who the pass-catching back is. Montgomery is a desperate add in PPR leagues if you need a body who can get you 10 points in a pinch.
Handcuffs: Spencer Ware, Malcolm Brown, Gio Bernard, Jaylen Samuels, Wayne Gallman, Chase Edmonds, Jamaal Williams, Rex Burkhead (James White)
DJ Moore (68% owned on Yahoo)
Two straight games of 8+ targets; can that type of volume be here to stay? That’s really all DJ Moore needs to stay productive. He has serious upside and has a great fantasy playoff schedule. It’s tough to keep him out of lineups in this point, even if it means a potential dud. At least his duds aren’t a zero in PPR. Just keep in mind that even though Devin Funchess has been ineffective, he vacated 8 targets from the week prior by missing his Week 12 game.
I’ll just copy and paste what I said about Reynolds last week. The Rams play 3-WR sets more than any other team, their WRs are a big part of what they do, and we saw that on Monday night. Reynolds caught 6 of 8 targets for 80 yards and a TD, and his foot was 1 inch away from another TD. Now that Cooper Kupp is out for the season, Reynolds isn’t just a “wait until Kupp is back” for the Rams this time around; they have a vested interest in making sure Reynolds is involved since he’s a part of their anticipated Super Bowl run. He caught 2 TDs in his last game without Kupp as well, so he can probably help you the rest of the way… although you’ll have to wait until Week 13 since he’s on a bye this week. Just keep in mind that you might not see the same type of target volume you saw on Monday night, as all numbers in the pass game were a bit inflated.
I think it’s about time I mention Adam Humphries. I honestly haven’t been taking him seriously. Since the Bucs’ Week 5 bye, Humphries is averaging almost 5 catches and 63 yards per game. 14.6 PPR points/game – that’s completely startable, and is starting to not look like a fluke. Carolina and New Orleans the next two weeks – two good matchups for slot WRs. Think about it if you need a PPR WR.
Ellington has had 6 receptions in each of the last two games out of the slot for the Lions, and we should expect a similar output from here on out now that Marvin Jones is out; his and Golden Tate’s vacated targets need to go somewhere, and some of that will be distributed Ellington’s way. He’s a solid 10-point floor PPR option.
DeSean Jackson is seeking a second opinion on his injured hand, and if he’s out for any period of time, Godwin gets a major boost as a full time player on the outside opposite Mike Evans. All Godwin needs to be very productive is to be on the field more. He has a WR2 ceiling if D-Jax were to miss time.
He’s the Tyler Lockett of the Panthers. The volume isn’t there, but he seems to be getting it done lately. 3 TDs in 4 weeks, and he can break one at any point. Great matchup this week.
Josh Doctson has seen a 31% target share from Colt McCoy in the 1.5 games they’ve played together. The quality of those targets are questionable, but it’s opportunity that Doctson didn’t have with Alex Smith. He has the ability, and it seems like McCoy is more willing to let Doctson make plays on the ball, which is more of his strong suit. The matchup this upcoming week in Philly is very juicy, so if you’re desperate for a flex play in a deeper league, Doctson is a waiver wire option.
Keep an eye on Tyrell Williams’ injury, and whether he practices/plays this upcoming week. Mike Williams would be in line for greater opportunity and more time on the field if Tyrell is limited or out in Week 13.
He’s a TD machine with Jameis in at QB, and without OJ Howard for the rest of the season, it’s back to old times between Brate and Winston.
Gerald Everett and Tyler Higbee
Everett has scored 3 TDs over the past two weeks, and a 2-pt conversion the week prior.. that’s relevant because they looked at him in the red zone, regardless of whether it was a TD or not. Higbee’s 6 catches on 7 targets the week prior was encouraging, and he caught a TD the week prior. I would go Everett over Higbee if I had to choose one. If you’re strapped at TE, why not be tied to this offense?
This is starting to become a thing, and while we would’ve liked more volume for Smith, he’s getting it done with 3 TDs over the last 4 games. He’s had 10+ points in PPR since the Titans’ Week 8 bye.
He caught 7 of 8 targets last week, which is amazing for a tight end. He doesn’t have the best matchup this week, but he’s worth a pickup if you need help during your fantasy playoffs.
Jeff Driskel peppered Uzomah with 8 targets after he took over for Andy Dalton in Week 12. We can see a similar tendency moving forward.
Jameis has two matchups that he can work with over the next two weeks. High floor, high ceiling. Hopefully he doesn’t get pulled.
If Joe Flacco is back healthy, will he be back as the starter? We’ll have no word on that until later in the week, but for now, Jackson has a safe floor and high ceiling.
Outside of him getting hurt in Week 13, he’s done a pretty good job over the last four weeks for fantasy since his Week 8 bye. He’s healthy, and he’s not a bad option against the Jets this week.
With the Eagles secondary so banged up, even Colt McCoy can do some work against them. Outside of the interceptions, he wasn’t all to bad, and was taking more shots than Alex Smith was. The Redskins are having a tough time running the ball, so they might have to depend on McCoy’s arm moving forward.
Low floor, high ceiling. He has put this offense on his back, and if he’s successful, he’ll put up a big day against the Dolphins. He ran for 100 yards this past week, so if he can combine that with 200 yards passing, maybe a TD or so, he’ll give you a decent return.