Fantasy Football: Who to start in Week 13

Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch (24) rushes against New England Patriots linebacker David Harris (45) during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017, in Mexico City. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)

Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch (24) rushes against New England Patriots linebacker David Harris (45) during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017, in Mexico City. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)

We’re back after a short break with the advice you need to propel you into the fantasy football playoffs. And don’t worry, I won’t tell you to bench your star players for no apparent reason like Ben McAdoo (RIP Eli).

Let’s jump into Week 13.

Start: QB Tyrod Taylor, Buffalo Bills

The New England Patriots’ defense has been much better of late, but they haven’t played the best quarterbacks. The Patriots are coming off games against Matt Moore, Derek Carr and Brock Osweiler, so they haven’t really proven much despite the decent statistics. Taylor gets a home game against the Pats this week, and he should have plenty of opportunities to throw while coming from behind. Taylor’s mobility gives him a safe floor, and he’s normally much better in home games (except for the disaster against the Saints).

Sit: QB Case Keenum, Minnesota Vikings

Keenum has been on fire recently and I have started him multiple times in good matchups over the past couple weeks. The problem this week is Keenum goes on the road to take on the Falcons, who have held opposing quarterbacks to just 13.9 fantasy points per game in Atlanta. The only quarterback to score more than 13.3 fantasy points in Atlanta this year was Aaron Rodgers, and despite Keenum’s fantastic year I think we can all agree he’s no Rodgers. There are better options than Keenum this week.

Start: RB Marshawn Lynch, Oakland Raiders

The Giants are very bad and Lynch is going to get plenty of opportunities to run the ball down their throats to close out the game. Lynch has come alive lately, scoring at least 18 fantasy points in two of the last three weeks. The Raiders are without their best two receivers and will probably have to rely on Lynch even more than normal. Expect Geno Smith to give Oakland plenty of short fields, making Lynch a great bet to score at least one touchdown.

Sit: RB Tevin Coleman, Atlanta Falcons

Coleman has scored at least 12 fantasy points in each of the last three weeks, but Devonta Freeman is expected to return this week. Freeman will take volume away from Coleman, and the running back duo has a brutal matchup against the Vikings. Minnesota has given up the least points to running backs this season, averaging 17.3 fantasy points per game. With Coleman and Freeman splitting those points, keep Coleman on your bench this week.

Start: WR Cooper Kupp, Los Angeles Rams

The Rams take on the Cardinals this week, meaning they’ll have to deal with shutdown cornerback Patrick Peterson. Fortunately for Kupp, Peterson will likely match up with Sammy Watkins, leaving Kupp with beatable coverage. Kupp had eight catches for 116 yards against the Saints last week and has logged at least six receptions in three consecutive games. With Robert Woods doubtful this week, expect Jared Goff to look towards Kupp early and often.

Sit: WR Josh Gordon, Cleveland Browns

This should go without saying, but there has been way too much hype around Gordon this week. Gordon hasn’t played in an NFL game since 2014 (THREE years ago), and he has never even played an NFL game sober. The Browns said he will play “as much as possible,” but there is no way I’m trusting Gordon with playoff seeding on the line. Keep an eye on him this week, but please, please don’t start Josh Gordon.


Josh Buser is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at joshua.buser@uconn.edu.