Week 13 Receivers
Updated 12/5 at 11:45 AM ET. Moved DeVonta Smith up.
WR Notes: Cooper Kupp has been held below 10 targets one time all season. … As Hayden Winks demonstrates, Justin Jefferson is well positioned for a blow-up week vs. Detroit. If Darnell Mooney can do it, so can J-Jeff. Vikings coach Mike Zimmer has made the rare admission that the team might throw more during Dalvin Cook’s absence. … Only a flukily-low touchdown total is holding Keenan Allen back in fantasy. He is No. 1 in receptions (36) and No. 2 in yards (399) over the past month. … Diontae Johnson’s 37 targets over the past three weeks are second to none. Ben Roethlisberger’s security blanket will continue to be shoveled looks vs. the Ravens’ vulnerable pass defense. … Marquise Brown’s prodigious target totals have not been translating to yards over the past month, but he remains the WR10 by average half PPR points. Thanks in part to injury, the Steelers’ pass defense has come unglued. This is probably too big of a bet for some, but I am going in on Hollywood’s likely volume. … Stefon Diggs has one of the best games of his career vs. New England last Week 16. A lot has changed for both sides since then, but Diggs’ recent red zone dominance helps keep him afloat in the mid range of the WR1 board.
$1,000,000 up for grabs. Download the NBC Sports Predictor app and play SN7 for FREE! Get started here!
CeeDee Lamb returns from the concussion protocol as Amari Cooper comes back from the COVID list. Cooper was apparently feeling symptoms as recently as Tuesday, so it’s unclear if he will be ready for his usual route and target allotment. As for Lamb, his ceiling has been accompanied by a frustratingly low floor, but he had cleared 94 yards in 3-of-4 games before his head injury in Kansas City. The Saints’ pass defense is mostly getting by on reputation right now. Lamb is a WR1, Cooper in the WR18-24 range and Michael Gallup a borderline WR3. … Antonio Brown (ankle) is somehow no closer to a return. Neither Chris Godwin nor Mike Evans have been feasting of late, though that should finally change vs. the Falcons’ jaw-droppingly bad defense. Only five teams have permitted more receiver fantasy points, and that number would be lower were it not so easy to run on Atlanta/garbage time not so prevalent. … Jaylen Waddle has been something of a poor man’s Diontae Johnson of late, stacking up volume and slowly but steadily turning it into more actual production. That will be put to the test vs. the Giants’ solid defense if DeVante Parker suits up for the first time since Week 8, but it’s difficult to believe Waddle’s layup looks will suddenly dry up if boundary man Parker back in the lineup.
Ja’Marr Chase is the WR32 by average half PPR points over the past five weeks. Meanwhile, Tee Higgins finally had his long-awaited breakout in Week 12. Are Chase and Higgins regressing to the middle, or is this just a bump in the road for OROY contender Chase? NextGenStats measures Chase’s average intended air yards at 13.8, which is still 2.1 higher than Higgins’ mark. It never made sense that Higgins went so long without a WR2 floor, but Chase remains the only Bengals wideout with WR1 ceiling, a compelling rankings tiebreaker. … Suiting up for the first time since Week 8, now would be as good a time as any for DeAndre Hopkins (hamstring) to finally have a 10-target effort. The Bears allow the eighth most receiver fantasy points, and the Cardinals never found an alpha answer with Hopkins on the sideline. … It’s been a lean period for Michael Pittman in his team’s run-heavy attack. As much as the Texans offer slump-busting potential, they are hugely vulnerable on the ground and have surrendered just three more passing scores (17) than picks. … Adam Thielen is a TE1 masquerading as a WR2. Especially with Dalvin Cook sidelined, Thielen should be in line for his typical red zone looks vs. the winless Lions.
Darnell Mooney’s 244 receiving yards over the past two weeks are second only to Justin Jefferson. Allen Robinson (hamstring) appears nowhere close to returning. The Week 13 risk for Mooney is Justin Fields’ (ribs) likely return, as nearly all of Mooney’s Week 11-12 production came with Andy Dalton under center. The Cardinals were continuing to suppress the pass heading into their Week 12 bye. … Terry McLaurin has gone four games without reaching 10 looks as Washington has ramped up its rushing attack. 10-plus targets may no longer be a realistic weekly aspiration. … Brandon Aiyuk has cleared 85 yards three times in four games despite shaky target totals. Deebo Samuel’s run-game usage was freeing up looks, though Samuel’s likely Week 13 absence could create carries for Aiyuk while also stabilizing his targets floor. Seattle is an A+ matchup. … It is probably statistical noise, but Tyler Lockett has 234 yards in three games since Russell Wilson’s return compared to 70 for DK Metcalf. Both could be big-play reliant against a 49ers offense that figures to severely limit Seattle’s time of possession. I guess I would rather bet on Metcalf hitting the big one than Lockett seeing 10-plus targets, something he has done three times to Metcalf’s one.
The training wheels were off for Odell Beckham in Week 12 as he played 98 percent of the Rams’ snaps. So did Van Jefferson, though Beckham caught 5-of-10 targets for 81/1 as Jefferson failed to clear three catches for the fourth straight game. I would be leaving out some critical information, of course, if I failed to mention that Jefferson did out-gain Beckham 93-81. I simply have more faith in OBJ doing it again vs. the Jags. … Hunter Renfrow has caught at least seven balls in 3-of-4 contests since Henry Ruggs’ release. The Football Team is as soft as it gets for receiver matchups. … Elijah Moore has vacuumed up targets from four different quarterbacks over the past month. Even though Zach Wilson is playing poorly, some continuity might actually do Moore some WR3 good. … DeVonta Smith’s floor is essentially zero points. I guess he actually has some ceiling vs. the Jets’ bottom-five pass defense. … Jerry Jeudy’s ceiling has been nonexistent and his floor surprisingly shaky. The Chiefs are not a great matchup. … Kendrick Bourne’s play-making ability keeps finding a way. He is the only Pats pass catcher for whom that has been true.