Start 'Em Sit 'Em Week 13: Star Players Who'll Bounce Back from Recent Struggles

Maxwell OgdenCorrespondent IIINovember 25, 2013

NEW ORLEANS, LA - NOVEMBER 10: Injured wide receiver Miles Austin #19 of the Dallas Cowboys watches from the sideline against the New Orleans Saints during a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on November 10, 2013 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Week 13 of the 2013 NFL regular season is set to commence on Thursday, Nov. 28, which is Thanksgiving Day. It will usher in the final five weeks of the season and provide both fantasy football owners and legitimate franchises an opportunity to make one last push at the postseason.

The unpredictability of the NFL has left many teams and fantasy owners searching for answers. Stars have struggled to live up to expectations, and that has many wondering what it'll take to turn things around.

Fortunately, the following players will bounce back strong from their recent struggles.


Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins

Position: Quarterback

Week 13: vs. New York Giants

2013 Season Statistics

10 GP; 83.6 RAT, 2,714 YDS, 59.7 CMP%, 14 TD, 10 INT; 66 ATT, 345 YDS, 0 TD

Arguably the most frustrating player of the 2013 NFL regular season has been Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III. The reigning Rookie of the Year has been inaccurate, irresponsible and dynamic, all at the same time.

Somehow, his numbers are still strong. Sort of.

RG3 is on pace for more than 4,000 passing yards and 20 passing touchdowns, but he also has 10 interceptions through 10 games. Throw in 10 fumbles, and he's been the cause of numerous highs and lows in fantasy football.

Griffin has four games with at least 20 fantasy football points, per ESPN, but he also has four with 12 or less. He's added a 14-point performance against the Oakland Raiders, thus making RG3 the personification of inconsistency.

During Week 13, he'll be brilliant.

Griffin will go up against the division-rival New York Giants. New York is becoming a favored team due to its recent success, but its defensive improvements led only to a heartbreaking Week 12 loss. Expect Griffin to capitalize on a potential letdown game.

For what it's worth, in two games against the Giants in 2012, RG3 had three passing touchdowns, one interception and 161 rushing yards.


Ben Tate, Houston Texans

HOUSTON, TX- NOVEMBER 17: Ben Tate #44 of the Houston Texans rushes past Nick Roach #53 of the Oakland Raiders on November 17, 2013 at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas. Raiders won 28 to 23.(Photo by Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images)
Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images

Position: Running Back

Week 13: vs. New England Patriots

2013 Season Statistics

11 GP; 129 ATT, 544 YDS, 1 TD; 29 REC, 40 TGTS, 117 YDS

Using the "star" label on Ben Tate of the Houston Texans may be off-base, but he's proven he deserves it when he gets a high number of touches. He had four 100-yard rushing performances as a rookie and, when healthy, he routinely puts up valuable production in fantasy football leagues.

Unfortunately, his 661 yards of total offense through 11 games haven't been what fantasy owners wanted.

Tate put up 88 rushing yards and 29 receiving yards during Week 11, but he carried the ball seven times for one yard in Week 12. He did have five receptions for 26 yards, but Tate was absolutely dreadful from a fantasy perspective.

Look for him to bounce back during Week 13.

The New England Patriots are an elite team, but they're still weak up the middle. The Patriots are 31st in the NFL in rushing defense, the Texans are No. 1 in pass defense, and that all adds up to Houston turning to Tate early and often to keep Tom Brady on the sidelines. Knowshon Moreno of the Denver Broncos put up 224 rushing yards against the Patriots during Week 12.

Houston has quarterback questions, but Tate will flirt with 100 rushing yards and four receptions, giving him an excellent closing fantasy number.

Start him.


Miles Austin, Dallas Cowboys

ARLINGTON, TX - AUGUST 24:  Miles Austin #19 of the Dallas Cowboys during a preseason game at AT&T Stadium on August 24, 2013 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Position: Wide Receiver

Week 13: vs. Oakland Raiders

2013 Season Statistics

6 GP; 16 REC, 142 YDS, 0 TD

As if any NFL fan is surprised to hear this, Miles Austin of the Dallas Cowboys has been hindered by injuries. In 2013, he's played in just six games, accumulating 16 receptions for 142 yards and no touchdowns.

During Dallas' Week 13 showdown with the Oakland Raiders, look for Austin to rebound.

Oakland is No. 25 in passing yards allowed per game and No. 27 in passing touchdowns allowed. That will open up the passing game for Tony Romo, who is more than capable of sharing the wealth, as the Raiders key in on Dez Bryant with consistent double-teams.

Terrance Williams will be the deep-ball threat, but Austin should have no trouble grabbing five receptions. He's still a valuable possession receiver who, when healthy, can find his way into openings in the opposing defense.

It's been a rough couple of years, but Austin can still be trusted against inferior opponents.