Fantasy Waiver Wire Pickups – Week 13
In typical 2020 fashion, this week there were numerous players out due to COVID, and games got shifted all around the slate, causing BAL and PIT to play on Wednesday night (if at all). Our best thoughts go out to the players and families who are dealing with the grasp of the virus, and hopes to speedy and full recovery quickly. With playoffs looming in the next week or so, lets find some depth for the coming fantasy matchups.
RULES: These picks will be for players that are UNDER 40% rostered (ESPN Rankings) in standard leagues. These selections will not only be starting caliber players, but will also provide bench depth for the comings weeks. Reminder, these players will not always be for the respective week, we plan to look ahead a bit to beat the mass pickup as the player gains notoriety or favorable matchup. Any future projections will be noted in the body of the analysis.
QB: Ryan Fitzpatrick- MIA (21.5% Rostered)
FitzMagic was a stud in Week 12. Although he was playing the Jets, he was still able to go 24/39 for 257 yards and 2 TD. With the Bengals coming into town in Week 13, and Tua expected to miss more time with a thumb injury, Fitzpatrick will have the opportunity to feast on Cincinnati. The Bengals are ranked as the 23rd overall defense vs. opposing QB’s and allow an average of 21.9 fantasy points per game. With DeVante Parker and Jakeem Grant in outstanding mid-season form, and a desolate running back room in Miami, the passing game should be the main means of scoring in Week 13. With Joe Burrow out for the remainder of the season (knee) Cincinnati, Brandon Allen has struggled to move the ball, and with Miami’s defense playing well to this point in the season, the ball should be in Fitzpatrick’s hands often.
RB: Jordan Wilkins- IND (30.0% Rostered)
With Jonathan Taylor sidelined with COVID, and at this point in time, projecting to miss Week 13, Nyheim Hines and Jordan Wilkins seem to be the top tandem in Indianapolis going into Houston. Houston is ranked 31st (out of 32…) against the run this season, and is allowing 25.6 fantasy points to opposing running backs. If Taylor does in fact miss this game, Wilkins will be fantasy relevant as not only a running back, but also as a pass catcher out of the backfield. Rivers loves to get his RB’s involved in the passing game, and with Houston’s porous defense, it leads for BOTH backs to be fantasy relevant. In the last few weeks, Houston has allowed major fantasy points to Adrian Peterson (17.0), James Robinson (15.0), and Jamaal Williams (16.0) and these trends should continue into Week 13 with the Colts in town.
RB CUT: Brian Hill- ATL (36.3% Rostered)
With the recent knee injury to Todd Gurley (go figure), Brian Hill has seen a rise in fantasy ownership, and will raise even further going into Week 14. With Gurley’s history of knee injuries, this is a hesitant topic for ATL training staff as if he returns too soon; he will almost definitely reinjure it with his past history. Hill went into Week 12 as the RB1 for ATL, and was able to only rush for 55 yards on 13 attempts, and was outshined by Ito Smith who went for 65 yards and 1TD on only 12 carries. If Gurley is slated to miss more time, Ito Smith will most likely be the lead back vs. New Orleans, and if he isn’t, Brian Hill is not the answer. New Orleans has the #1 overall defense in the NFL and also has the #1 run defense, only allowing an average of 10.7 points to opposing running backs. If Todd Gurley is in fact out, there are no viable options in ATL to plug into your lineup.
WR: Breshad Perriman- NYJ (14.3% Rostered)
I know, I know, the Jets offense (and defense) is a dumpster fire, and while aiming for the #1 pick is going successfully, they have to still show up on Sundays. With every game starting (and ending) as a deficit, the Jets have to rely on their passing attack as a come from behind method to attempt to pull them back into the game. Darnold has heavily targeted Perriman and Mims this season, and going into a Week 13 matchup vs. Las Vegas, Jets should be able to score a few times. Over the last 4 games, Perriman has seen the field on over 95% of offensive snaps, the highest in the Jets offense, and while getting the ball to him has been a bit of a struggle, the Raiders are in the bottom half of the NFL in pass defenses, so this should be a plus matchup for both Perriman and Mims. Playing from behind is often a positive fantasy outcome for WR as the fastest way to move down field is through the air.
WR: Keke Coutee- HOU (0.3% Rostered)
With the 6 game suspension of Will Fuller due to violating the NFL’s policy on PED’s, Coutee will be vaulted into the WR2 role just behind Brandin Cooks. With Randall Cobb on the IR, and no other solidified receiving options in Houston (Kenny Stills, Steven Mitchell, Isaiah Coulter, etc.) Coutee should see a large jump in not only offensive snap percentages, but also targets. Although Coutee has been nonexistent this season, he has seen an increase in snaps over the last two weeks, and with Fuller averaging 86.8% of offensive snaps through 12 weeks this season, there is a large portion of the receiving game that will be missing, which gives Coutee the chance to prove himself. Although he has some difficult secondary matchups in the coming weeks (INDx2 and CHI), with the absence of the #1 pass catcher, and the lack of a running game, Watson will need to get Coutee involved.
TE: Trey Burton- IND (6.0% Rostered)
Although Burton missed the early portion of the 2020 season, he has ramped back up his production, and had a great Week 12 in Tennessee. With the Titans secondary playing relatively well this season, not much was expected for Burton in Week 12, but he was able to go 3/6 for 42 yards and a TD. They’re not overwhelming numbers, but as of late, it seems as if Rivers is trying to force the ball into Burton’s hands, especially in the red zone (2 TD in last 2 weeks). Over the next 3 weeks, the Colts take on Houston (14th), Las Vegas (12th) and Houston (14th) again. Although these rankings push towards area of concern, with Burton being a red zone threat, and the Colts projected to spend lots of time in the red zone, this could be a perfect marriage of targets to touchdowns.
Streaming DEF: Las Vegas Raiders (3.4% Rostered) vs. NYJ
Throughout this season, I have stated numerous times, whoever is playing the Jets, that is slated to be a top defense in that respective week. While the Raiders have had struggles of their own, and are ranked in the bottom half of all NFL teams in terms of Defense, they are playing the Jets, who are dead last in offensive production, and are allowing an average 15.1 fantasy points per game to opposing defenses. While it is a positive for the Jets that Darnold is back under center, in Week 12 he threw 2 interceptions and the OLine allowed 3 sacks, while throwing for 0 total touchdowns. There is not much else to say on this topic other than the Jets have been struggling offensively, and if you have the opportunity to target their opposing DEF, then it is more than likely going to be a positive outcome.
Let me know your thoughts! Reach out on twitter at @AJAudet80 for discussion on the fantasy selections above. Any questions on your fantasy lineups, trades, or additional waivers pickups, hit me on twitter for advice! I look forward to hearing from you and working to build a strong fantasy community.