Fantasy Football Week 13 Rankings: Projections to Love and Matchups to Exploit

Kristopher Knox@@kris_knoxCorrespondent IDecember 2, 2022

Fantasy Football Week 13 Rankings: Projections to Love and Matchups to Exploit

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    Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes
    David Eulitt/Getty Images

    Week 13 of the 2022 NFL season got underway on Thursday night, and there were some solid fantasy performances during the evening. If you had Josh Allen or Stefon Diggs in the lineup, you're probably in a good spot heading into the weekend. If you're playing against them, you may need to make up a little ground.

    With the fantasy playoffs on the proverbial doorstep, now is not the time to falter with lineup decisions for the remainder of the week.

    Below, you'll find our updated points-per-reception (PPR) rankings for the key skill positions—quarterback, running back, receiver and tight end—along with one favorable matchup for each spot.

Quarterback

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    Chargers QB Justin Herbert
    AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

    Week 13 QB Top 10

    1. Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs

    2. Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles

    3. Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers

    4. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals

    5. Tua Tagovailoa, Miami Dolphins

    6. Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens

    7. Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys

    8. Trevor Lawrence, Jacksonville Jaguars

    9. Geno Smith, Seattle Seahawks

    10. Tom Brady, Tampa Bay Buccaneers


    Matchup to Exploit: Justin Herbert at Las Vegas Raiders

    Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert is a weekly must-start in most formats, and with Keenan Allen back in the lineup at receiver, he's returning to elite status.

    Last week against the Arizona Cardinals, Herbert threw for 274 yards and three touchdowns while adding 38 yards on the ground.

    This week, the 24-year-old will visit the division-rival Las Vegas Raiders. While the 4-7 Raiders are fighting for their playoff lives, they shouldn't do much to contain the signal-caller from a fantasy perspective.

    Las Vegas has surrendered the second-most fantasy points to opposing QBs this season. The last time the Oregon product faced off against Las Vegas in the season opener, he threw for 279 yards and three scores with no interceptions.

    If, for any reason, you have Herbert in a streaming situation—perhaps after picking up Geno Smith or Trevor Lawrence—now is the time to trust him.

Running Back

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    Texans RB Dameon Pierce
    Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

    Week 13 RB Top 20

    1. Austin Ekeler, Los Angeles Chargers

    2. Josh Jacobs, Las Vegas Raiders

    3. Nick Chubb, Cleveland Browns

    4. Derrick Henry, Tennessee Titans

    5. Christian McCaffrey, San Francisco 49ers

    6. Jonathan Taylor, Indianapolis Colts

    7. Aaron Jones, Green Bay Packers

    8. Saquon Barkley, New York Giants

    9. Kenneth Walker III, Seattle Seahawks

    10. Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys

    11. Dalvin Cook, Minnesota Vikings

    12. Dameon Pierce, Houston Texans

    13. David Montgomery, Chicago Bears

    14. Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints

    15. Travis Etienne Jr., Jacksonville Jaguars

    16. Rachaad White, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    17. Jamaal Williams, Detroit Lions

    18. Jeff Wilson Jr., Miami Dolphins

    19. Isiah Pacheco, Kansas City Chiefs

    20. Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys


    Matchup to Exploit: Dameon Pierce vs. Cleveland Browns

    Rookie running back Dameon Pierce has morphed into a star for the Houston Texans this season.

    "He is hard to stop," Texans coach Lovie Smith said, per NFL.com's Kevin Patra.

    However, the 22-year-old hasn't been a must-start like Herbert in recent weeks. In Weeks 11 and 12—against the Washington Commanders and Miami Dolphins, respectively—he combined for just 16 rushing yards, five receptions and 17 receiving yards.

    Managers may be inclined to relegate the Florida product to the bench, but they should have a little faith in Week 13. With a superb matchup against the Cleveland Browns, he is poised to bounce back.

    The Browns have allowed the second-most fantasy points to opposing backs this season. If Pierce doesn't have a big day against them, it may be time to bench him for the remainder of the fantasy season. Given Cleveland's propensity to surrender big plays, however, that shouldn't be a concern.

Wide Receiver

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    Eagles WR A.J. Brown
    Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

    Week 13 WR Top 20

    1. Davante Adams, Las Vegas Raiders

    2. Tyreek Hill, Miami Dolphins

    3. Amon-Ra St. Brown, Detroit Lions

    4. Justin Jefferson, Minnesota Vikings

    5. A.J. Brown, Philadelphia Eagles

    6. CeeDee Lamb, Dallas Cowboys

    7. Jaylen Waddle, Miami Dolphins

    8. Tee Higgins, Cincinnati Bengals

    9. Keenan Allen, Los Angeles Chargers

    10. Amari Cooper, Cleveland Browns

    11. Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    12. Ja'Marr Chase, Cincinnati Bengals

    13. DK Metcalf, Seattle Seahawks

    14. Christian Kirk, Jacksonville Jaguars

    15. Garrett Wilson, New York Jets

    16. Terry McLaurin, Washington Commanders

    17. Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    18. Chris Olave, New Orleans Saints

    19. Deebo Samuel, San Francisco 49ers

    20. Tyler Lockett, Seattle Seahawks


    Matchup to Exploit: A.J. Brown vs. Tennessee Titans

    After a fine start to the 2022 season, Philadelphia Eagles wideout A.J. Brown has started to cool off just a bit.

    While the 25-year-old did have a touchdown catch against the Green Bay Packers last week, he failed to reach 60 receiving yards for the fourth straight week. He's been buoyed by PPR value (14 receptions in four weeks), but he hasn't been a top fantasy producer.

    That should change this week against the Tennessee Titans.

    The Titans have allowed the second-most fantasy points to opposing receivers in 2022. They're also talented enough to keep things close with Philadelphia. This should keep the Eagles in a passing mindset, which wasn't really the case against Green Bay.

    Derrick Henry and the Titans can challenge an Eagles defense that has surrendered 4.7 yards per carry this season. Tennessee is allowing just 3.9 yards per carry, which means Philly may have to lean on Brown and the passing game to escape with a victory.

    Expect the Ole Miss product to approach or surpass the coveted 100-yard mark this week.

Tight End

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    Chargers TE Gerald Everett
    Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    Week 13 TE Top 10

    1. Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs

    2. Mark Andrews, Baltimore Ravens

    3. T.J. Hockenson, Minnesota Vikings

    4. Dalton Schultz, Dallas Cowboys

    5. Pat Freiermuth, Pittsburgh Steelers

    6. George Kittle, San Francisco 49ers

    7. Gerald Everett, Los Angeles Chargers

    8. David Njoku, Cleveland Browns

    9. Hayden Hurst, Cincinnati Bengals

    10. Foster Moreau, Las Vegas Raiders


    Matchup to Exploit: Gerald Everett at Las Vegas Raiders

    There are really only two must-start tight ends in fantasy this season. Managers who don't have Travis Kelce or Mark Andrews are largely stuck trying to play the matchups with a wide second tier of TEs.

    This is a great week to trust Chargers tight end Gerald Everett, who doesn't have a high ceiling but does possess a strong PPR floor. While he has topped 50 yards only once in the past five weeks, he's caught at least four passes in four of those five contests.

    The 28-year-old could rack up both yards and receptions this week against the Raiders. Las Vegas has allowed the seventh-most fantasy points to tight ends this season.

    Managers shouldn't expect Everett to rival the production of Kelce or Andrews this week, but they can expect four or five catches and 50-plus receiving yards.


    *Fantasy scoring information via FantasyPros.

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