Week 13 Fantasy Football Projections: Top Streaming Options for Notable Injuries

Zach Buckley@@ZachBuckleyNBANational NBA Featured ColumnistNovember 27, 2018

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) waves before an NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Chris O'Meara/Associated Press

The arrival of Week 13 of the 2018 fantasy football season means the departure of bye weeks.

It does not, however, mean smooth sailing for roster decisions. Not when the injury bug remains on the attack.

An MCL injury has clouded Melvin Gordon's availability for the near future. Andy Dalton (thumb) won't suit up again this season. Same goes for Jack Doyle (kidney).

It's impossible to predict or prevent medical maladies, which can feel particularly crushing at this point of the campaign. But the key is to quickly pivot to the best backup plan possible.

That's where we come in. We're here to help make sense of the waiver wire by highlighting the best streaming options—available in more than 50 percent of leagues on Yahoo—at the priority positions.



Lamar Jackson, Baltimore Ravens (42 Percent Owned)

Only time knows whether Lamar Jackson will retain his current gig as Baltimore Ravens starting quarterback once Joe Flacco is healthy. But here's what is certain: Jackson is undefeated in two starts and—more relevant to our purposes—sitting on two-game totals of 37 rushes for 190 yards, 27 completions for 328 yards and two touchdowns.

Baltimore Ravens @Ravens

.@Lj_era8 scores the TD and finds a fan repping his @UofLFootball jersey! https://t.co/fRoZmwmKRW

"He's got a winning spirit," Ravens wide receiver Michael Crabtree said. "Everything he does, he does well."

Jackson's ownership percentage feels almost comically low given his rushing workload. Players who average roughly 20 carries for 100 yards per week don't typically wait long to get snatched up.

Considering the quality of Jackson's next matchup (the Atlanta Falcons defense ranks 26th in passing yards per game and 25th in rushing yards per game), there should be a furious race to claim him.


Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (47 Percent Owned)

We promise we aren't copying and pasting last week's recommendations. It's just that there's still ample upward mobility for the ownership percentages of both Jackson and Jameis Winston.

Granted, Winston isn't the easiest player to trust week to week. He's not always even assured steady playing time.

But when he's in a groove, he reaches heights few streamers can come close to matching. And right now, the 24-year-old is grooving like a young Miles Davis.

Winston has played a shade under six quarters the past two weeks. In that time, he has thrown for a whopping 511 yards on 75.9 percent passing and four touchdowns against just one interception.

There's reason to believe the former No. 1 pick should continue trending up when locking horns with the Carolina Panthers, who surrender the sixth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks.


Running Backs

LeGarrette Blount, Detroit Lions (14 Percent Owned)

There's nothing flashy about LeGarrette Blount, who spent most of this season off the fantasy radar while buried behind electric Detroit Lions rookie Kerryon Johnson. But Blount doesn't need flair to be relevant; he just needs touches.

More demolition derby car than Ferrari, Blount battled his way for 88 yards and a pair of touchdowns in place of the injured Johnson on Thanksgiving. That's a notable stat line for any 2018 rusher, but it grows especially compressive when considering the competition: the Chicago Bears, who allow the second-fewest yards per game on the ground.

Detroit Lions @Lions

.@LG_Blount is 🔥🆙 today. #OnePride https://t.co/xOk1crdixt

"He's a great player," Lions head coach Matt Patricia said. "He's tough, he's competitive, he works hard and tries to do everything the right way."

Blount's fantasy value is tied closely to Johnson's availability, so if you plan on considering the former, make sure you keep a close eye on the latter. That said, if Blount can maintain a significant role for another week, he'll have a chance to make noise against a Los Angeles Rams defense that has allowed eight touchdowns to running backs over its last four contests.


Frank Gore, Miami Dolphins (25 Percent Owned)

In his 14th NFL season, Frank Gore might put the "old" in "old reliable." But reliability is useful at any age, as the 35-year-old is proving with consistent involvement (15-plus touches in three straight) and quality production (4.5 yards per attempt, his most since 2012).

While he's only found the end zone once all year, he has remained a decent plug-and-play option for those seeking stability. His ceiling isn't particularly high (just two games with 100-plus scrimmage yards), but he's usually safe for double-digit carries, a catch or two and roughly 60 to 70 total yards.

Not blown away by those numbers? We wouldn't expect you to be. We're just saying there's a safety net in place with this recommendation.

There's also potentially more upside with Gore this week than most. The Dolphins' rushing attack should be plenty busy against the Buffalo Bills defense (first against the pass, 15th against the run), and Gore could see a sizable chunk of that activity with Kenyan Drake fighting a nagging shoulder injury.


Wide Receivers

Adam Humphries, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (31 Percent Owned)

Trust us, recommending two players from the 4-7 Buccaneers makes more sense than you'd think. The team might have 99 problems, but passing volume isn't one. In fact, no club has come close to matching Tampa's league-leading 3,914 yards through the air.

Fourth-year wideout Adam Humphries has been a bigger factor in that production than fantasy owners seem to realize. He's a top-50 player in receptions (tied for 41st) and receiving yards (40th), and his recent trajectory suggests he'll keep climbing in both categories.

Over the last five weeks, Humphries has averaged 5.2 receptions for 65.0 yards. All four of his touchdowns have come within the last four contests, including the one he had Sunday while catching all six passes sent his way.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @Buccaneers

Jameis scrambles to find a wide open Humphries who fights for the TD! https://t.co/hJGQSDSQjH

Humphries could keep his hot streak going with the Carolina Panthers coming to town. The last time these teams met, he caught all eight of his targets and turned them into 82 receiving yards and two scores.


Josh Doctson, Washington Redskins (12 Percent Owned)

If you're searching for the notable numbers behind this recommendation, there aren't many to find. Josh Doctson hasn't topped 70 yards all season, only cleared 50 yards once and has just two touchdowns to date.

But a couple of trends have piqued our interest in the former first-round pick.

For starters, his upside seemingly climbed once Colt McCoy took over for an injured Alex Smith. McCoy first saw action in Week 11. Doctson tied his season high in targets that week (seven), then set a new one on Thanksgiving (10). His 66 receiving yards on Turkey Day were also a season best.

Then there's his Week 13 matchup. It's the Philadelphia Eagles and their injury-ravaged secondary. On the season, they've allowed the second-most fantasy points to receivers.

If there was ever a week to stream Doctson, this is almost certainly it.


Statistics used courtesy of NFL.com and ESPN.com. Fantasy scoring and ownership information obtained via Yahoo Sports.