DRAFT Week 13 Breakdown and Top Plays
How is it Week 13 already? As fantasy degenerates, we wait all summer for football season to start, and it goes by so fast. The good news is we still have a handful of weeks of DFS left, and with that, we get different matchups, along with a fresh set of players primed for your lineups.
DRAFT's weekly fantasy contests are not your typical salary cap format. Instead, they offer a series of snake-style draft contests with differing team amounts. You can choose from head-to-head, 3-team, 6-team, 8-team, or 10-team contests, with varying dollar amounts per contest. With each draft, players must select five position players: 1QB, 2RB, and 2WR/TEs. There are no salaries, no ownership percentages, and no large tourneys.
Below I will take a look at some of the best plays of the week, according to league size. You will see multiple references to aFPA, which is our schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed metric. By using aFPA, we remove bias so that we can level the playing field and compare matchups in an "apples-to-apples" manner. One more note: remember that DRAFT is a snake-style format, so you must plan accordingly in larger contest sizes.
With only two drafters involved, your cumulative score just has to be higher than that of your opponent. Since only 10 players are involved, stick to the elite DFS chalk here.
Russell Wilson (SEA) vs. PHI
Wilson dropped 24.62 DRAFT points on the 49ers last week and 31.92 on Atlanta in Week 11. He’s playing like a man possessed, and I want a part of it. Since the Seahawks' bye in Week 6, he’s thrown 15 touchdowns and ran for two more, and he also has the highest fantasy point total among QBs through Week 12. Philly ranks first in RB aFPA, so Wilson will need to make plays with his arm and do his fair share of scrambling. He tends to excel in those situations, raising his fantasy floor.
Tom Brady (NE) @ BUF
Despite his perennial questionable status, Brady is good to go in Week 13—when he’s on the field, he’s chalk. He’s posted 21 or more DRAFT points in his past three games and is projected to drop 19.3 on the Bills this Sunday.
Philip Rivers (LAC) vs. CLE
Rivers makes a nice alternative to normal chalk picks this week. Whether you draft him in a H2H or a larger team contest, he’s a guy who could get you stud points without using such a high selection. He slashed the Cowboys defense last week for 434 passing yards and has thrown at least 2 touchdowns in each of his last three contests. DRAFT ranks Rivers third this week among QBs, with a projected score of 19.5 points.
Todd Gurley (LAR) @ ARI
You can draw fun cartoons in your driveway with Gurley he’s so chalky. The Rams RB is averaging 22.4 touches per game and sits third in the NFL when it comes to snap percentage, taking the field on 80% of the Rams’ plays. He’s the third-highest RB on DRAFT this week with a projection of 17.30 points. Grab Gurley every time you can, he won’t disappoint.
LeVeon Bell (PIT) @ CIN
Bell is always in the conversation in H2H’s, as he consistently puts points on the board week after week. We chase volume in DFS, and Bell has the highest number of touches among RBs in the league, with an average of 28.5 per tilt. He faces the Bengals defense this week, who rank 24th in RB aFPA. Bell will eat again in Week 13, so be sure to draft him early and often.
Leonard Fournette (JAX) vs. IND
Some may be a bit hesitant to grab Fournette early, as the rookie RB laid an egg last week with just 5.70 DRAFT points. The Colts defense sits among the five worst at defending the rush, with an aFPA of 27.2 PPR points to enemy RBs. Jacksonville’s implied total is a hefty 25.5 and they're favored to win by 9.5 points. Look for a nice rebound from Fournette at home this week, helping you to win that cash along the way.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
Keenan Allen (LAC) vs. CLE
Over the past two weeks, Allen leads all WRs in targets, averaging 13.5 per game, and he has posted a whopping 62.90 DRAFT points in that two-game span. He and Rivers are on a tear, and they get the winless Browns this week at home. Allen is healthy, playing lights out, and chalk this week.
Antonio Brown (PIT) @ CIN
Much like Brady, Brown is eternal chalk, well at least as long as he’s on the field, healthy, and playing at a high level. The Steelers star wideout has scored over 35 DRAFT points in the past two weeks, and already has 1,195 receiving yards with 8 touchdowns this season. He gets the Bengals defense this week—a unit ranked 16th in aFPA versus WRs, but Brown is matchup-proof so none of that actually matters. Update (Dec. 3): Brown (toe) is questionable for Monday night.
Brandin Cooks (NE) @ BUF
New England has the highest implied point total of the week, which bodes well for Cooks on Sunday. The fourth-year WR is second only to Brady in fantasy points among the Patriots offense over the past three weeks and is averaging 9 targets per game in that time frame. DRAFT projects 11.8 points from him in Week 13, which I think is a bit low.
DeAndre Hopkins (HOU) @ TEN
Despite a less-than-stellar QB at the helm of the Houston offense, Hopkins is still producing WR1 numbers, averaging 17.17 DRAFT points per contest over the past three weeks. The Titans rank 22nd in WR aFPA this season, surrendering an average of 34.2 PPR points to the position weekly. This matchup sets up nicely for Hopkins, and his foot injury does not appear to be a hindrance to his playing status.
When you enter a contest with only three teams, you’re either picking two players at a time, or you’re in the middle of two drafters doing just that. Same studs apply here; draft accordingly.
6, 8 or 10-Person Draft
Below you’ll find a few more recommendations for Week 13 starters to assist in filling out five-player rosters when more players are involved. You’ll need to dig a bit deeper into the rankings to find a player or two who will out-produce the players your opponents draft.
Jared Goff (LAR) @ ARI
Goff has thrown for an insane 2,964 passing yards through the first 12 weeks of the season, including four games with over 300 yards. He’s averaging 17.71 DRAFT points a contest and gets a decent matchup versus the Cardinals' 16th ranked DST to QBs. He’s been money all season long and this week shouldn’t be any different.
Drew Brees (NO) vs. CAR
Despite the Saints leaning more run-heavy this season, Brees sits ninth among QBs in total fantasy points, averaging 17.61 DRAFT points a game. Carolina averages 16.3 PPR points in aFPA to QBs through the first 12 weeks and 35.0 to WRs. Against the run, the Panthers are the second-toughest, so look for Brees to expose the secondary through the air on Sunday.
Carson Wentz (PHI) @ SEA
Wentz faces a Seattle defense ranked eighth against the pass, but one that’s also been riddled with injuries this season. The second-year QB scored over 20 DRAFT points in the last three weeks and has 242.58 on the season. Sunday night’s showdown has an over/under of 47 points, with 26.25 implied for the Eagles. Wentz will be doing his thing, so be sure to draft your share of the Philly signal-caller this week.
Jordan Howard (CHI) vs. SF
Howard has been up and down this season, but you have to love him at home against the 49ers. Occupying the sub-basement in RB aFPA, San Francisco ranks dead last, surrendering 32.6 PPR points to opposing backfields thus far. Chicago is favored by three points at home, usually meaning there will be plenty of ground game for Howard to help your roster.
LeSean McCoy (BUF) vs NE
McCoy’s elevated volume keeps him in play. He more than doubles any other member of Buffalo’s offense in terms of touches and has been on the field for 71% of their snaps this season. He is DRAFT's fourth-highest projected RB this week with 14.90 points and is a great play at home.
Christian McCaffrey (CAR) @ NO
The Panthers rookie swiss army player is always in the conversation in larger contests due to his diversity in scoring points. He can rush out of the backfield, head over the middle, and run routes in the slot, along with whatever else they can dream up for him to do. He’s super talented and is a constant double-digit fantasy guy.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
Davante Adams (GP) vs. TB
Since Green Bay’s Week 8 bye, Adams is averaging 9.3 targets, 6.3 touches, and 14.9 fantasy points per game. He has emerged as Brett Hundley’s main squeeze and gets a juicy matchup on Sunday. The Packers have a home tilt against Tampa Bay, a defense ranked dead last in WR aFPA.
Michael Thomas (NO) vs. CAR
Although a bit inconsistent this season, especially in the end zone, Thomas tops the Saints receiving corps in fantasy points over the past three weeks with 36 DRAFT points. He has a plus matchup this week at home versus Carolina, as the Panthers sit 26th in aFPA versus opposing WRs. With 9.7 targets per contest in his past three, Thomas leads the Saints offense. With high volume, comes those sweet, sweet fantasy points.
Mike Evans (TB) @ GB
With Jameis Winston back under center for the Bucs, Evans gets a boost this week. Not that he really needs it, as the Packers occupy the NFL cellar in WR aFPA, coming in at 31st in the league. He’s due for a breakout and this week has the makings of a solid one for Evans. Some may be scared off by his lack of 100-yard games this season, but the Tampa Bay WR is good for an average of 11.97 DRAFT points.
Adam Thielen (MIN) @ ATL
I don’t love the matchup here, as Atlanta’s defense is among the top five versus WRs, but Thielen has been studly lately, leading the Vikings offense in both fantasy points and targets in Weeks 10-12. He is the fourth -highest ranked WR on DRAFT this week, with 13.80 projected points.
Robby Anderson (NYJ) vs. KC
Anderson’s production this season has been extraordinary, given that the ball has been thrown by a 38-year old NFL journeyman in a mediocre offense. He’s currently boasting a five-game touchdown streak and 20.2 PPR points per game through Week 12. Kansas City ranks 29th in WR aFPA, so look for Anderson to light them up on Sunday. The sophomore WR is a solid option in larger DRAFT contests as your fourth or fifth pick.