Week 12 Fantasy Football Studs

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Finally, after 7 long weeks, we have made it through the schedule of bye weeks.  This means that every [healthy] player was at the disposal of fantasy owners when setting lineups.  If you locked these players in, you had a very good week.  If you squandered these points on your bench, not so much, or worse yet, they were all in your opponent’s lineup.  In which case, R.I.P.

Editor’s Note: Get the full breakdown on today’s podcast, and read up on the Week 12 Duds.

Here are the Week 12 notables.


Philip Rivers @ DAL
434 passing yards, 3 TDs
Over the last two weeks, the Chargers offense has looked unstoppable.  Rivers has locked onto Keenan Allen and the duo has made fantasy owners very happy.

Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Case Keenum @ DET
282 passing yards, 2 TDs, 20 rushing yards, 1 rushing TD
Playing like a QB who doesn’t want to lose his starting job, it looks like Keenum is doing enough to keep it over the recovering Teddy Bridgewater.  Even if he isn’t a weekly starter on your team, he is at least giving you the confidence to start his offensive weapons.

Josh McCown vs CAR
307 passing yards, 3 TDs, 28 rushing yards
McCown playing well isn’t a surprise.  It is, however, surprising that he has been able to maintain this pace and stay healthy.  His inability to do so in the past has been his downfall.  Not this year.

Carson Wentz vs CHI
227 passing yards, 3 TDs, 29 rushing yards
If Carson Wentz was named the NFL MVP today, I don’t think anyone would have a legitimate gripe with the decision…

Tom Brady vs MIA
227 passing yards, 4 TDs, INT
…except maybe Gisele Bundchen.  She would happily point out on her social media accounts that her man, Tom, is playing exceptionally well despite his AARP status.

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Russell Wilson @ SF
228 passing yards, 2 TDs, INT, 25 rushing yards, TD
This game started off looking like it was going to be an ugly one.  The high winds and rain in Santa Clara were ominous and even led to an interception on the first play from scrimmage.  Wilson and the Seahawks rallied, just as they often do in the second half of games (and seasons), and his owners were left with a solid stat line.

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Jared Goff vs NO
354 passing yards, 2 TDs, INT
The Saints defense was shorthanded playing in Los Angeles on Sunday.  Goff didn’t cut them any slack.  Even without his top wideout, Robert Woods, Goff made mincemeat of what remained of the Saints secondary.

Brett Hundley @ PIT
245 passing yards, 3 TDs
Horrible, terrible, disgusting, and downright embarrassing defense was played by the Steelers secondary in this game.  They should be ashamed of themselves.

Ben Roethlisberger vs GB
351 passing yards, 4 TDs, 2 INTs, 25 rushing yards
Don’t laugh, but the Steelers were playing from behind for most of this game and needed every one of Big Ben’s 351 passing yards to survive the Hundley-led Packers on Sunday Night Football.

Running Backs

Alvin Kamara @ LAR
5 carries, 87 rushing yards, TD, 6 receptions, 101 receiving yards, TD

Harry How/Getty Images

Joe Mixon vs CLE
23 carries, 114 rushing yards, TD, 3 receptions, 51 receiving yards
While this performance pales in comparison to the aforementioned performance by Kamara, Mixon accomplished his in slightly more conventional ways.  Grinding out yards against an inferior opponent at home is what RBs in this league should be doing.  Mixon and the Bengals offensive line seemed to figure that out in Week 12.

Tevin Coleman vs TB
19 carries, 97 rushing yards, 2 TDs
While somewhat surprising that Coleman wasn’t targeted in the passing game, this is the production that owners expected from their high-end Freeman handcuff.

Marshawn Lynch vs DEN
26 carries, 67 rushing yards, TD, 3 receptions, 44 receiving yards
This wasn’t a particularly efficient day for the Skittles-loving RB.  Something tells me his fantasy owners don’t mind, and it wasn’t like the Denver offense was going to force Oakland to do anything else. [On an unrelated note, this dude is the worst teammate ever. @ me]

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Rex Burkhead vs MIA
13 carries, 50 rushing yards, TD, 2 receptions, 3 receiving yards, TD
Bill Belichick is a riddle, wrapped inside an enigma, encased in a mystery who hates you and your fantasy team.

Frank Gore vs TEN
17 carries, 62 rushing yards, TD, 2 receptions, 17 receiving yards
Somebody doubted Frank Gore out loud, so he scored again to prove them wrong.  The schedule going forward looks tough with matchups against the Jaguars, Ravens, and Texans left.  See? Now that I’m doubting Gore again he will continue to have start worthy performances.

Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Jamaal Williams @ PIT
21 carries, 66 rushing yards, TD, 4 receptions, 69 receiving yards, TD
Pittsburgh was too busy making sure Brett Hundley looked like Aaron Rodgers on Sunday night to notice that they were also giving up 135 total yards to a third-string rookie RB.

Le’Veon Bell vs GB
20 carries, 95 rushing yards, 12 receptions, 88 receiving yards
Having Le’Veon Bell in your lineup is downright cheating.  He’s an elite RB and an elite WR in one starting spot.

Wide Receivers

Keenan Allen @ DAL
11 receptions, 172 receiving yards, TD, 14 targets
Keenan Allen feasted on Thanksgiving, marking his second consecutive explosion.  However, it wasn’t enough to earn the WR1 spot for Week 12.

Antonio Brown vs GB
10 receptions, 169 receiving yards, 2 TDs, 12 targets
I know what you’re thinking, “Surely this must be the top performance for WRs in Week 12.”  Nope.

Julio Jones vs TB
12 receptions, 253 receiving yards, 2 TDs, 15 targets
Boom! There it is.  Your king of the fantasy football landscape in Week 12.  Julio Jones shredded the Buccaneers and even caught a 50+ yard TD pass from fellow wideout Mohamed Sanu on a play out of the Wildcat formation.

Robby Anderson vs CAR
6 receptions, 146 receiving yards, 2 TDs, 10 targets
Not to be outdone by the big named guys, Mr. Anderson put himself on the radar this week.  In fact, the Jets WR has now scored in 5 straight weeks and is worthy of weekly start consideration.

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Al Bello/Getty Images

Marvin Jones vs MIN
6 receptions, 109 receiving yards, 2 TDs, 9 targets
Because scoring just 1 TD is so two-thousand and late.  Xavier Rhodes and the formidable Vikings defense couldn’t slow down Marvin Jones in Detroit on a very short week.

Jamison Crowder vs NYG
7 receptions, 141 receiving yards, TD, 10 targets
The Giants secondary regressed on Thursday, just one week after shutting down the Chiefs offense.  Crowder took advantage of the opportunity and picked up the slack for injured teammates, Reed, Pryor, and Thompson.

Jermaine Kearse vs CAR
7 receptions, 105 receiving yards, TD, 11 targets
When McCown had the day he had passing the ball, you know that Kearse must’ve gotten his.  The Jets, though just 4-7 are one of the bigger surprises this season.  They have shown some fight in games.  Jermaine Kearse and this offense are a big reason why.

Mohamed Sanu vs TB
51 passing yards, 1 passing TD, 8 receptions, 64 receiving yards, 9 targets
Amazingly, Sanu is now 6 for 6 passing in his career with 3 TDs and a perfect passer rating.  It has come so naturally to the WR that he made sure to bobble the ball before uncorking a 50-yard pass to make it interesting.

Brandin Cooks vs MIA
11 rushing yards, 6 receptions, 83 receiving yards, TD, 7 targets
Cooks has honestly been a delight this season.  He has shown far more consistency both in his target share week to week and in his fantasy production than he did in New Orleans.  He has found good chemistry with Tom Brady.

Tight Ends

Rob Gronkowski vs MIA
5 receptions, 82 receiving yards, 2 TDs, 8 targets
It is good to see, even with all of the new TD celebrations going on around the league, that Gronk has stuck with a classic: Smash.

Jim Davis/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Zach Ertz vs CHI
10 receptions, 103 receiving yards, TD, 12 targets
I am thankful for Zach Ertz.

Kyle Rudolph @ DET
4 receptions, 63 receiving yards, 2 TDs, 4 targets
A fellow writer said last week, “Rudolph… that’s a Christmas thing, not a Thanksgiving thing.”  Apparently, Rudolph transcends holiday seasons as he helped to deliver a fantasy win to his owners early this year.

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Honorable Mentions

Andy Dalton vs CLE
214 passing yards, 2 TDs, 26 rushing yards

Blake Bortles @ AZ
160 passing yards, INT… wait for it… 62 rushing yards, 2 rushing TDs

Samaje Perine vs NYG
24 carries, 100 rushing yards, 3 receptions, 30 receiving yards

Latavius Murray @ DET
20 carries, 84 rushing yards, TD

Alshon Jeffery vs CHI
5 receptions, 52 receiving yards, TD, 9 targets

Nelson Agholor vs CHI
3 receptions, 32 receiving yards, TD, 6 targets, fumble recovery TD

Sammy Watkins vs NO
4 receptions, 82 receiving yards, TD, 9 targets

Cooper Kupp vs NO
8 receptions, 116 receiving yards, 11 targets

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Devin Funchess @ NYJ
7 receptions, 108 receiving yards, 12 targets

Adam Thielen @ DET
8 receptions, 89 receiving yards, 11 targets

Hunter Henry @ DAL
5 receptions, 76 receiving yards, TD, 5 targets

Ricky Seals-Jones vs JAX
4 receptions, 72 receiving yards, TD, 6 targets

Delanie Walker @ IND
4 receptions, 63 receiving yards, TD, 5 targets

Jack Doyle vs TEN
7 receptions, 94 receiving yards, 8 targets

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