As we head into the last week of the regular season, there are three types of teams remaining. First, the top seeds. These teams clinched the playoffs weeks ago, some even clinching byes, and they have turned their eyes towards Weeks 14-16. Next, the playoff contenders. These teams are fighting for their playoff lives, likely with a record around .500, and for them, Week 13 is their Super Bowl. Finally we have the bottom-dwellers. These unfortunate teams have already turned their focus to fantasy basketball, though they likely drafted Andrew Bynum so they’re stalking local bowling alleys for the chance to heckle him. But these eliminated teams also get to play the role of spoiler, so they should still be active on the Waiver Wire, if only to ruin their friend’s weekend. And isn’t that why we all play fantasy football in the first place?
Here are your Week 13 pickups for non-standard leagues:
Two QB Leagues – Kevin Kolb
Well it’s clear that Ryan Lindley isn’t the answer after a ridiculous 4-pick, 2-pick six performance that won me a couple of matchups this week thanks to Janoris Jenkins and the Rams D. I don’t know that Kolb is the answer, but if you’re scrambling at QB due to injuries, he’s probably the best option available. Not that it’s saying much, but Kolb does lead the Cardinals’ trio of QBs in every relevant stat category, and they can’t get worse than they are with Lindley, so I would assume Arizona goes with Kolb as soon as he’s healthy. If you are forced to do the same and your team is in playoff contention, then you deserve your own 30 for 30.
TD-Only Leagues – Mohamed Sanu
Predicting receiver touchdowns is usually an exercise in futility, but it’s impossible to ignore what’s been going on in Cincinnati this season. Every time the Bengals get in goal-to-go situations, they give up on the run and force feed the ball to A.J. Green, allowing him to score a TD in an insane nine straight games. The last few weeks, defenses have adjusted, and treat Green like a punt-team gunner, lining up two defenders right on him and jamming him at the line. That type of coverage has previously been saved for guys like Calvin Johnson, Plaxico Burress (also worth a look in deep TD-only leagues) and Randy Moss, so Green has joined an elite club. But this blurb isn’t about Green, it’s about Sanu. Did you see how easy it was to forget about him? Yeah, defenses feel the same way, and it’s led to Sanu getting 4 TDs in the last three games, all in short yardage situations. He likely won’t keep up that pace, but with the attention Green gets from each defense, he’ll get his share of opportunities.
PPR Leagues – Ryan Broyles
The Titus Young rollercoaster ride appears to have come to an end in Detroit, with Young getting benched on Thanksgiving and the coaching staff seemingly fed up with him for the foreseeable future. Enter Ryan Broyles, who has had inconsistent playing time over the course of the season, but now enters the starting lineup opposite Megatron. He responded nicely last Thursday, pulling in 6 of the 12 balls thrown his way for 126 yards. Mike Thomas and Brandon Pettigrew will benefit from Young’s exile as well, but Broyles clearly has the brightest future in Detroit and should see the most of Stafford’s balls. Cover your eyes Ryan!
Return Yardage Leagues – Jacquizz Rodgers
It might be optimistic to think that Quizz isn’t owned, but if you’re in a shallow league, or his owner got tired of the constant tease, pick him up quickly. It was clear early on that Atlanta was focused on getting Rodgers involved in the offense against Tampa, and he didn’t disappoint, putting up 79 total yards and a TD on only 12 touches. His usage has been inconsistent at best this year, but my hope is that Mike Smith and his staff have finally realized that Michael Turner is washed up, and Quizz gives that offense a new dimension. Turner will still get his goalline carries, we can’t get greedy, but if Rodgers can get 10-15 touches a game, along with his return duties, he becomes a solid Flex play in return yardage leagues.
IDP Leagues – Miles Burris
I recommended Burris in this space earlier in the year after he had a hot start, but inexperience and a crowded linebacking corps for Oakland limited his chances. Over the last few weeks, Burris has cemented his role as a starter for the Raiders, and he has the much coveted every-down role that IDPers love so much. It’s clear that the Raiders have their eyes focused on the future (I’ve even heard the name Terrelle Pryor floated around), so expect to see Burris get nearly 100% of the defensive snaps from here on out. He’s at 46 tackles (28 solo) in his last 6 games and should only improve on that pace with experience, and teams will continue to run the ball on the Raiders giving him more chances than other LBs in the league.