Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football Week 13 Rankings Review: Vance Refrigeration


Fantasy Football Week 13 Rankings Review

Credit: The Office

Karen: I think I’m just allergic to your perfume.
Phyllis: My perfume?
Karen: It’s just my crazy nose. I’m… uh, used to different smells.
Phyllis: Bob Vance bought this perfume for me in Metropolitan Orlando. It’s made from real pine.
Karen: Who’s Bob Vance?
Phyllis: You have a lot to learn about this town, sweetie.

— The Office: Season 3, Episode 8, “The Merger”

Week 12 of the fantasy season was all over the place. Sure, you had your normal fantasy producers like Drew Brees, Antonio Brown, and Ezekiel Elliott among a few others. However, last week was very infuriating for some fighting for playoffs.

  • Taylor Gabriel scored more standard fantasy points than Brandin Cooks, Amari Cooper, Allen Robinson, Doug Baldwin, Julio Jones, Jordan Matthews, and Randall Cobb – COMBINED!
  • Colin Kaepernick, Trevor Siemian, and Ryan Tannehill all finished in the top five at QB. Hell, Willie Snead had better passing stats than Russell Wilson did.
  • Let’s spin the Wheel of Inconsistent Tight Ends – Jermaine Gresham has a TD in his second straight week while Greg Olsen can’t buy a TD right now.

You can probably tell that I had the worst week in my fantasy sports career. As my playoff chances dwindled in almost all of my leagues, I was getting rather irritated at all of this madness occurring in front of my eyes. However, as I took a deep breath and closed my eyes, I pictured Phyllis from the hit TV show The Office in my head making a snarky comment.

You have a lot to learn about this [game], sweetie.

I started laughing at how ridiculous I was being for getting mad at the results. Simply put, the parity of Week 12 is exactly what fantasy football is about. The moment that you think you have it all figured out is the exact moment where you couldn’t be any further from having it all figured out.

I love how unpredictable fantasy football can be and wouldn’t change that for anything. Just as I do in the Rankings Review, all you can do pre-Sunday (and Thursday/Monday) is put your team in the best position to win.

After that, fantasy football gonna fantasy football.

So, the next time you are in disbelief or anger over the result of one of your matchups, step back a second. Ask yourself if you put in the necessary effort to set your lineup and win your matchup. If the answer is yes, then there’s only one explanation as to why you lost: fantasy football. And, you know what, that ought to sit well with you. Shoot, you might even get a laugh out of it.

Unless you were playing high stakes… Then that just sucks.

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As mentioned above, Week 12 was one of the most hit or miss weeks of the season. The Rankings Review last week definitely reflected that with a 7-7 finish. Mediocrity is the name of the game when you run down the chart from left to right. Props to the rankings staff to making this extra difficult on me. I’m not losing hair or anything…

Hey, let’s lather our scalps with some rogaine and hop right back into the fire with the Rankings Review for Week 13!

Fantasy Football Week 13 Rankings Review

If you have start/sit questions, by all means hit me (@therealwody) or any of my fellow F6P writers up on Twitter. You may have heard the famous phrase ‘no one cares about your fantasy team’, but I promise we do! That or we just have an obsession regarding the fantasy game and enjoy running scenarios through our heads. Either way, you are getting the advice!

As always, these rankings reflect the standard scoring system. To check out what I think on fantasy defenses, give the Stream-O-Matic a try! Also, all defensive rankings used are DVOA ratings from FootballOutsiders.

Too Low

Derek Carr, Oakland Raiders (F6P Rank: QB10)

Surprised to see Carr so low on the list after a solid performance against the Panthers in Week 12. I know, fractured pinky finger – whatever. He actually performed better after he put the glove on and came back in! With the weapons he has outside and an elite offensive line, I have no hesitation throwing him in the top 6 at QB this week.

Besides, the Bills defense isn’t what it was earlier in the season. Just last week they allowed Blake Bortles to throw for two scores. That in a game where Allen Robinson only had two catches for 24 yards. They haven’t faced competition nearly as good as Oakland and I believe the Raiders will blow them out in this game.

Rank Above: Ben Roethlisberger, Russell Wilson, Matt Ryan

Mark Ingram, New Orleans Saints (RB13)

Another week, another chance for me to explain why I don’t believe the Lions‘ run defense is any good. You might look at their statistics on the ground and reasonably infer that they can handle running backs up the middle. They haven’t given up a 100 yard rusher since Week 4 – impressive. However, the competition hasn’t exactly been dynamic. Stop me when you see a good offense they have faced in their past seven games: Eagles, Rams, Redskins, Texans, Vikings, Jaguars, and Vikings (again).

Alright, you probably stopped me at Redskins but they aren’t the greatest running team anyway. Besides, Chris Thompson had 12 carries for 73 yards and 7 catches for 40 yards so I could exclude that game. Had to defend my argument in style! Anywell, back on track we go…

You don’t think Sean Payton and the Saints are going to exploit them at home? I might be insane, but I like both Ingram and Tim Hightower as startable running backs this week. The Saints will light up this defense, but just as important is the fact that their defense won’t be stopping the Lions offense either. In a back in forth, quick pace game, I feel more and more confident in using these two backs.

I have Ingram ranked 8th on my board. Additionally, Hightower should have enough touches to warrant RB2 consideration.

Rank Above: Doug Martin, Lamar Miller, Jay Ajayi, Carlos Hyde

Latavius Murray, Oakland Raiders (RB16)

Yeah, so all that stuff I said regarding Derek Carr’s matchup applies here. I ain’t afraid of no Buffalo defense! It’s hard to rank a quarterback and running back on the same team highly in the rankings, but Oakland is turning into one of those teams. Hey, if the Falcons can do it in a much tougher matchup, why can’t the Raiders?

In regards to Murray though, dude has been ultra-consistent when he plays. You can pretty much pencil in 20 touches and 80 yards as the floor. The upside for scoring is present throughout the game and I have no issue ranking him just a little higher into the top 12. I just wanted to take a little time to give Murray some props. Many people wrote him off this year after finishing 2015 in the top 10 in RB scoring. If he does that two years in a row despite sitting out two and a half games, the respect will come.

Rank Above: Jay Ajayi, Carlos Hyde, Matt Forte, LeGarrette Blount

James Starks, Green Bay Packers (RB30)

I’m not a big fan of Starks, but even I think this ranking is low for a starting back in the Green Bay offense. The matchup against Houston isn’t super daunting or anything, so what gives?

Starks is getting all the carries between the tackles. I know those are few and far between, but he will be called upon more often against a defense that is weak up the middle like the Texans have. He had 17 carries against a stingy Eagles run defense last week and that number should eclipse 20 this week. On top of that, it’s not like he is phased out in the passing game. He’s averaged four catches a game the past four weeks.

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I’m projecting a heavy workload for Starks this week – think 24 to 28 touches. On volume alone, he makes for a low end RB2 and the matchup actually encourages me to rank him higher than that.

Rank Above: Jonathan Stewart, Rob Kelley, Rashad Jennings, Tevin Coleman

Stefon Diggs, Minnesota Vikings (WR22)

I feel as if I may be stealing one here. The rankers have accused me of picking the guys with injury concerns going into the week. I will not apologize though – WR22 is much too low for a receiver with the usage rate that Diggs has. If he is back on the gridiron for Week 13, there is no excuse for sitting him unless you have multiple elite receivers on your roster.

Did anyone watch the Thanksgiving day matchup between the Cowboys and Redskins? That pass defense was lackluster to be kind. Washington will do that to you, but it’s not like that’s the only time the secondary has been torched. Just look at the game logs for opposing wide receivers this season against this defense! It’s laughable. This is the 27th ranked defense by DVOA and Stream-O-Matic standards this week. Use it to your advantage.

Double digit targets for Diggs in the right matchup has sucked me in. I have him ranked as a high end WR2 with WR1 upside and I don’t think that’s a stretch at all. And hey, it’s his birthday week too, so you know he will want to show out! Never underestimate the power of a good narrative, right?

Rank Above: Davante Adams, Demaryius Thomas, DeAndre Hopkins, Tyrell Williams

Marquess Wilson, Chicago Bears (WR38)

If last Sunday was the first time you watched a Bears game, you would think Wilson was the up-and-coming star destined to get a shiny new contract. No, not Alshon Jeffery like many thought at the beginning of the year.

In his second game off the PUP list, Wilson teamed up with Matt Barkley to put up 8 receptions on 11 targets for 125 yards and a score. He also drew a pass interference call for 33 yards if you are one of those people who likes to pretend that those yards count (okay, I do). What’s more interesting is what Barkley’s statistics looked like when targeting everyone else. He threw both of his interceptions and only completed 46% of his passes when targeting other players.

Barkley has some sort of rapport and comfort built up with Wilson that does not exist elsewhere in that offense. Against a 49ers defense that has been quite subpar, I am willing to gamble on the upside. San Francisco has given up 21 passing touchdowns to wide receivers in 11 games. Let Wilson reel one in for you this week as a high end WR3 or FLEX play.

Rank Above: Jarvis Landry, DeVante Parker, Kenny Britt, Mike Wallace

Vance McDonald, San Francisco 49ers (TE14)

On the other side of that Bears-49ers game, the fantasy pundits are all over Colin Kaepernick as a top 10 option. How can a Kaepernick be ranked so high with no wide receivers ranked in the top 50? Well, rushing potential is first on the list. However, the second item on the list is the emergence of Vance McDonald.

The Wheel of Inconsistent Tight Ends I spoke of in the intro has stopped on McDonald for me this week. I guess receiving at least six targets a week is the most excited someone can get when looking at this passing offense. Nevertheless, I like McDonald to have a top 10 week among tight ends in Week 13. Available on most waiver wires, he presents a great pickup to those replacing Delanie Walker on his bye.

Rank Above: Antonio Gates, C.J. Fiedorowicz, Cameron Brate

Too High

Pretty weak section for players that are ‘too high’. The rankers left me with nothing here. I kept picking players but would backtrack on myself when doing the extra research. So yeah, these two guys will suffice!

Doug Martin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (RB8)

I love the workload that Martin has been receiving since returning from injury. What I don’t love is the top 10 ranking he has received this week despite not busting out of his funk. I get that we want to be ahead of the curve when projecting players to breakout, but I don’t think this is the right setting for Martin.

The matchup with the Chargers is tougher on paper than it is to say aloud. The Chargers defense of past would be an easy plug-and-play for struggling running backs looking to bounce back. This year it’s quite the opposite case. They are in the top 10 in rushing YPC allowed to opponents and Martin’s 3.0 YPC is uninspiring.

His performance against Seattle last week was a little encouraging, but I don’t think I can rate him as an RB1 this week because of it. I rank him down in the RB2 range. Hey, at least he gets two matchups against the Saints in the next three weeks to be an RB1! That’s great consolation!

Rank Above: Spencer Ware, Mark Ingram, Matt Forte, Latavius Murray

Thomas Rawls, Seattle Seahawks (RB17)

The way to beat the Panthers is through the air, not on the ground. Carolina has been especially stingy against running backs in November, only allowing one TD and 3.8 YPC. Rawls owners are walking into a trap this week.

Ehh, the RB17 ranking is probably safe enough for the staff rankers. However, I haven’t shied away from being even more pessimistic on players than what is considered ‘safe’.

Let’s also take a moment to recognize how weird the spelling of the past tense of the word ‘shy’ is. ‘Shied’ – I can honestly say that I have never spelled that out before, just always said it in my head. You could say that I have shied away from saying the word ‘shied’.

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What am I talking about again? Oh right, Rawls should experience a downtick in production in Week 13.

Rank Above: Theo Riddick, Devontae Booker, Tim Hightower, Todd Gurley

About Tyler Thompson

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