I’ll bet you had to deal with a COVID issue or two this week in your lineups. I know I did. This, unfortunately, is the reality of fantasy football in 2020. As we get one week closer to the playoffs, or maybe your playoffs begin in Week 13 – we have to be ever more aware of delayed or postponed games. Make sure you have a backup plan. And let’s not forget about that rare Week 13 bye for Carolina and Tampa Bay.
QB Baker Mayfield, Cleveland
Finally playing in a game where he didn’t have to fight nasty weather, Baker Mayfield dealt a successful fantasy day. Throwing for 258 yards and two scores made him a Top 10 fantasy quarterback in Week 12. He peppered seven different players, topped off by eight catches and 143 receiving yards from Jarvis Landry. Due to improved play by the offensive line, Mayfield has been more comfortable lately and that’s likely to continue.
Cleveland will head to Tennessee in Week 13 where it will face a defense that gave up at least 295 yards to Nick Foles and Philip Rivers, twice, since Week 8. Cleveland will face the New York Giants and New York Jets in Weeks 15 and 16, respectively. Mayfield is currently 65-80 percent unrostered in fantasy leagues. You’ll get a good Week 13 from him before a nice playoff schedule.
WR Deebo Samuel, San Francisco
We’ve been waiting all year to see Samuel do what he did in Week 12. He caught more passes (11) than all the other running backs and wide receivers combined (10) and tallied more receiving yards (133) than the rest of his team combined (119). Now that he is healthy, we’ll see Samuel take over as the No. 1 receiver for San Francisco. With the defense still so banged up, San Francisco will need to rely on him to move the ball consistently.
Samuel and team will face a Buffalo defense in Week 13 that has surrendered big yardage days to No. 1 receivers like DeAndre Hopkins, Jamison Crowder and D.K. Metcalf this season. He’s a little tougher to find in larger fantasy leagues as his availability is in the 40-45 percent range. If you can pick him up, you could have a solid receiver drive you through the playoffs.
RB Latavius Murray, New Orleans
One of the most utilized backup running backs in the league, Latavius Murray has been making the most of his chances. In the last two games, Murray has more touches, carries, total yards and touchdowns than Alvin Kamara. With Taysom Hill under center, it seems that New Orleans has changed up its game plan significantly and Murray is truly benefiting. In Week 12, he ran for 124 yards and scored twice on 19 carries while Kamara had 54 scoreless rushing yards.
Regardless of the opponent, it looks like Murray will continue to out-carry Kamara in this new style of offense. However, New Orleans faces Atlanta in Week 13 and the tandem of running backs combined for 94 rushing yards against Atlanta in Week 11. Murray is 40-55 percent available in fantasy leagues, making him a tougher find in some larger leagues. With Hill starting at quarterback, Murray seems to be a valuable fantasy ball carrier.
TE Logan Thomas, Washington Football
Logan Thomas has been one of the more consistent tight ends all season – although with limited upside. He’s seen at least four targets in every game and caught at least three passes in all but three of them. He is Top 5 in the league in routes run at the tight end position. He has also caught more touchdowns (four) than Hunter Henry, Hayden Hurst and Zach Ertz. With his receiving numbers in a points per reception format, Thomas has been a Top 10 tight end in every week he has scored.
Washington heads to Pittsburgh in Week 13. With the pressure that Pittsburgh will be putting on Alex Smith, Thomas could be often targeted when a quick pass needs to be thrown. Thomas is unrostered in around 60-75 percent of fantasy leagues. He’ll be a fine stream at the tight end position in Week 13.
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, Miami
Miami decided to let Tua Tagovailoa and his thumb heal a bit longer and went with the wily veteran, Ryan Fitzpatrick against the Jets. Miami is very much in the playoff hunt and would be smart to roll with Fitzpatrick for the time being. In his last six starts, Fitzpatrick has thrown for over 300 yards and/or multiple passing touchdowns. Going back to 2019, he has accomplished those numbers in 11 of his last 13 starts.
Miami will host Cincinnati in Week 13 in a neutral matchup. In Week 14, Miami will face Kansas City in a game where there will likely be a lot of throwing opportunities. Fitzpatrick is available in more than 80 percent of fantasy leagues. Historically, he tends to be a boom-or-bust quarterback but he’s been much more boom lately.