Fantasy Football Target Trends for Week 12
Welcome to the target trends article for Week 12! The fantasy playoffs are within sight, and target trends are more important than ever when searching for viable fantasy options. As usual, this article will start with the overall target trends for the season.
We have a new player on the top of the target leaderboard, as Keenan Allen and his 113 now lead the league. Allen also leads the way with an average of 11.3 targets per game. Davante Adams comes in second overall with 111 targets, and former leader Stefon Diggs has fallen to third with 110.
T.J. Hockenson became the first tight end to reach triple digits with his total climbing to 102 after Week 11. At this rate, he’s on pace for 158 targets, which would edge out Zach Ertz’s record at the position of 156 from 2018. Travis Kelce is second at the position with 81, while Evan Engram (74) is the only other tight end over 70.
Despite his Week 11 bye, Alvin Kamara maintained the target leader at running back with 56. Christian McCaffrey (52) is the only other running back with at least 50 targets. There are nine more running backs with at least 40.
I’ll continue leading off this article with season-long target leaders, but for now, let’s check out this week’s target trends heading into Week 12.
Keenan Allen – 16 targets, 10 rec
Allen overtook the league lead with his 16 targets in Week 11. That isn’t a season-high, but the 44% team target share that they accounted for is. Allen has always been a target magnet, but he’s never had a season like this one is shaping up to be. He’s on pace for 192 targets, over 30 more than his career high of 159 from 2017.
David Njoku – 15 targets, 7 rec
Njoku’s 15 targets set a new career-high and tied T.J. Hockenson for most targets in a single game by a tight end this season. It came in Dorian Thompson-Robinson‘s first action since his emergency start in Week 4, and he targeted Njoku as many times as Amari Copper (eight) and Elijah Moore (seven) combined. He’s averaging 9.4 targets/game over the last five weeks, ahead of Cooper (8.2) and the rest of the Browns for the team lead over that span. His 20.7% team target share is seventh among tight ends, just ahead of Sam LaPorta (20.4%) and behind George Kittle (21.0%)
Adams has seen exactly 13 targets in back-to-back games. After a midseason drought, his usage has seen a nice uptick since Antonio Pierce took over as head coach. As for Tucker, he only had 10 targets on the season heading into Week 11. His seven targets against Miami didn’t amount to much, but that kind of usage from a speedy rookie is worth noting.
Mike Evans – 12 targets, 5 rec
Evans is no stranger to this article this season, but his 12 targets in Week 11 marked a new season-high. He only has seven more targets than Chris Godwin on the season, but he’s turned them into 219 more yards, six more touchdowns, and 53 more fantasy points. Evans is now just 220 yards away from his 10th consecutive 1,000-yard season.
Hill saw double-digit targets for the fifth consecutive game, despite missing some time in the second quarter with a hand injury. Three of Waddle’s eight targets came promptly on the drive while Hill was getting checked out. Hill is the clear top target in Miami, with Waddle next in the pecking order for Tua and the Dolphins.
St. Brown is another name you shouldn’t be surprised to see here. He’s averaging 12.6 targets/game since returning from his Week 5 injury and has seen at least seven targets in every game he’s played this season. As for Williams, it’s good that he saw a season-high 65% snap rate and caught his second touchdown of the season, but he did so on just three targets, a number he’s topped just once in his six games.
Adam Thielen – 11 targets, 8 rec
Frank Reich was back calling plays for the Panthers, and old man Thielen was back as their top offensive option. The veteran is averaging 10.6 targets/game since Week 2 and remains on pace for 165 targets, which would top his career high of 153 from 2018. At this point, it appears the only things that can slow Thielen down are injury or benching as Carolina starts to look toward the future with the worst record in the league.
Justin Watson – 11 targets, 5 rec
Another week, another player leading Kansas City in wide receiver targets. Watson entered Monday night’s game with just 25 on the season and a single-game high of five. His 11 targets against the Eagles set a new career-high, topping the 10 he saw in Week 16 of 2019 when he played for the Buccaneers. Watson is yet another Chief wideout that you can use as a desperation play, but you can’t trust him on a weekly basis at this point.
Collins didn’t miss a beat after missing Week 10, tying the career-high in targets that he set in Week 1, but it was the rookie who stole the show again. Dell is averaging 11.7 targets/game over his last three games and leads the Texans with 67 on the season. It’s been a while since we’ve seen Houston’s receiver corps at full strength, but Collins and Dell have shown enough to be weekly fantasy starters with C.J. Stroud delivering their targets.
George Kittle – 9 targets, 8 rec
San Fransisco’s offense is known for its excess of fantasy options, but Kittle has been leading the way in the receiving game recently. He leads the team with 31 targets over the last four weeks, comfortably ahead of Christian McCaffrey (25) and Brandon Aiyuk (24). That’s turned into a 28% team target share and the most fantasy points among tight ends over that stretch.
Calvin Ridley – 9 targets, 7 rec
Ridley may be the most frustrating player to roster in fantasy football this season. His target totals over the last eight games are 7, 2, 8, 8, 4, 10, 3, and 9. Over that span, he has two top-ten fantasy performances, including finishing as the WR1 in Week 11, and the rest of the weeks outside of the top 24. The return of Zay Jones in Week 11 may have impacted how Jacksonville utilizes Ridley, though it still feels uncomfortable starting him until he shows some consistency.
Brian Robinson Jr. – 9 targets, 7 rec
Robinson has been anything but a pass-catching back until recently. He saw just 12 targets his entire rookie season and 18 over his first nine games of this season. It’s been a different story the last two weeks. His career-high nine targets in Week 11 put him at 15 over the past two weeks. Some of that increased usage in the passing game is likely due to Antonio Gibson’s absence with a toe injury, but Robinson continues to be a pleasant surprise for his fantasy managers as the RB4 on the season.
Dortch came out of nowhere with 64 targets last season but was practically invisible with just two targets in Arizona’s offense over the first 10 weeks. That changed in Week 11 with the absence of rookie Michael Wilson. Dortch led the Cardinals with eight targets, good for a 28% target share in the game. Meanwhile, Brown was averaging 8.6 targets/game and a 28% target share himself over the first nine weeks but has seen that rate plummet to 4.5 targets/game and a 15% share in Kyler Murray’s first two games of the season.
A.J. Brown – 4 targets, 1 rec
Brown was noticeably uninvolved in Philly’s big win over Kansas City on Monday night. His four targets were his lowest single-game total since Week 10 of the 2021 season when he was still on the Titans. The down performance is likely a blip on the radar for Brown, who was averaging 10.2 targets/game headed into Week 11, but that won’t make fantasy managers who were counting on him Monday night feel any better.