By MIKE HERNDON
Well, it’s finally here: The week Deshaun Watson returns to the playing field in the NFL. He’s missed nearly as many weeks as he’s had sexual assault accusers, but if you’ve waited until this week to grab him off your fantasy league’s wire, you’ve likely waited too late.
With the state of the quarterback position in the NFL this year, it’s tempting to throw him right into your lineup – especially if you’ve been patiently waiting on the ghosts of Tom Brady or Aaron Rodgers to reappear or playing Russian roulette with Derek Carr or Kirk Cousins.
Do yourself a favor and avoid that temptation. Is it realistic to expect a quarterback, even one as good as Watson has been, to step right in after a nearly two-year absence and only a couple weeks of practice and pick right up where he left off? The matchup is juicy – a revenge game against his former Texans – but the likelihood is that he will underwhelm.
Wait a week and see what he’s got. You’ve waited this long.
And if you want to keep him buried on your bench on general principle, that’s OK too.
Here are the rest of Week 13’s starts and sits:
Trevor Lawrence, Jaguars: The long-awaited breakout may finally be here. He’s thrown for five touchdowns in his last two games, and he carved the Ravens up for 321 in an upset last week. This week, he faces a Lions defense yielding the most fantasy points to quarterbacks of any team in the league.
Russell Wilson, Broncos: If he’s still on your roster, how much more evidence do you need that it’s not happening this year? Drop him.
David Montgomery, Bears: Did you watch the Eagles carve up Green Bay’s run defense on Sunday night? If even the ghost of Justin Fields is able to play this week (and maybe even if he doesn’t), Montgomery should eat.
Dameon Pierce, Texans: I traded for Pierce recently, looking to bolster a lineup that’s thin at running back. He’d put up double-digit fantasy points in his last seven games before trade. In the two games since, he’s accumulated exactly 16 rushing yards. Total. You need to go back to the well this week, however, as Cleveland’s run defense has been a turnstile and this may finally be a game the Texans can keep close at least long enough to not abandon the run.
Jeff Wilson, Jr., Dolphins: He had a pristine matchup with one of the worst run defenses in the league last week against Houston, along with perfect game script for the run game, and his line was saved only by a touchdown. This week, he gets perhaps the toughest run D in the league in San Francisco, and Raheem Mostert may be ready to rejoin him in the backfield. Murphy’s law states this is when he’s bust out for 100 or more, but we’ll ride with the higher probability that he’ll disappoint again.
D’Andre Swift, Lions: Another week, another meager single-digit workload for Swift. Until they start giving him the rock, you can’t trust him.
Amon-Ra St. Brown, Lions: He sure looks healthy now. After being limited by a ?? earlier in the season, St. Brown has put up 100-plus yards in two of his last three games. This week, he gets a beatable Jacksonville secondary that yields the ninth-most fantasy points to receivers.
Christian Watson, Packers: Welcome to the NFL, Christian Watson. He’s scored six touchdowns in his last three games and topped 100 yards in two of them. This week he faces a Bears secondary that was just torched for 315 yards by the Jets’ Mike White. Fire him up.
Michael Pittman, Jr., Colts: He put up useful numbers in a loss to the Steelers last week with 61 yards and a score, but the struggling Indy offense should find the going tougher this week against a surging Dallas defense, leaving yards hard to come by for its top receiver.
Van Jefferson, Rams: It’s tempting to think somebody’s got to catch the ball, especially after Jefferson scored last week. But do they really? Bryce Perkins threw for only 100 yards last week, and is expected to start again this week. Avoid this offense.
Gerald Everett, Chargers: Mike Williams is likely to still be sidelined, Everett scored last week and LA faces the leaky Raiders defense this week. With the regrettable state of the tight end position in fantasy this year, what more reasons do you need?
As always, if you don’t have one of the three or four studs at the position, play whoever you can find that’s getting targets. It’s rough out in these streets.
Categories: Fantasy Football