Fantasy Football Buy Low, Sell High: Lamar Jackson, Jalen Hurts & Mac Jones Headline Trade Targets For Week 13
Getty Images. Pictured: Ravens QB Lamar Jackson and Patriots QB Mac Jones (left to right)
Week 13 is upon us.
The holiday week kicked off on Thanksgiving Day with a three-game slate, starting with a snooze fest between the Lions and Bears. The other two contests were thankfully a bit more captivating: The Raiders bested the Cowboys in an overtime thriller and the Bills trounced the Saints 31-6.
Backup quarterbacks continued to play roles this week with Andy Dalton, Trevor Siemian and Cam Newton getting the starts for their respective teams. Some starters returned after absences from the field, including Lamar Jackson and Zach Wilson; both looked quite rusty and tossed five interceptions combined.
There were some interesting upsets, though not as many as previous weeks. The Raiders defeated the Cowboys in OT, the Jets beat the Texans in a sloppy affair, the Dolphins topped the Panthers for their fourth-straight victory, the Giants bested the Eagles in a 13-7 nail-biter and the Broncos crushed the Chargers to surge into a three-way tie in the AFC West.
Every team in the AFC East was victorious in Week 12, while every team in the AFC South lost. The Patriots extended their hot streak and picked up their sixth straight win against the Titans. The Saints, Jaguars, Rams and Seahawks all have streaks of their own going, albeit in the opposite direction.
With the fantasy playoffs just a stone’s throw away and elite running backs dropping like flies — see: Dalvin Cook (shoulder), Christian McCaffrey (ankle), D’Andre Swift (shoulder) — now is an excellent time to toss out some trade offers to level up your teams as trade deadlines beginning popping up across most leagues.
As we approach Week 13, here are the trade targets who saw their value shift after the last 12 weeks of games.
Buy-Low Week 13 Trade Targets
Below are nine Week 12 underperformers, or players whose value may increase over the next few weeks whom you should target via trades.
Lamar Jackson, QB, Ravens
You may have a short window to buy-low here after a Sunday night stinker on national television. Jackson completed 20 of 32 attempts for 165 yards, one touchdown, four interceptions and tacked on 17 attempts for 68 rushing yards against the Browns. He has had his up-and-down games this year, though this was by far his worst performance. Week 12 was only Jackson’s second game all year with fewer than 200 passing yards, and his rushing yardage gives him a high floor and ceiling. There’s a chance he was feeling a bit rusty or depleted after recovering from an illness that held him out of Week 11. He should bounce back against the Steelers this week.
Jalen Hurts, QB, Eagles
Hurts posted his worst game of the year for fantasy purposes this week. He completed just 14 of 31 attempts for 129 yards, zero touchdowns, three interceptions and rushed eight times for 77 yards. Hurts has had a strong fantasy season thus far in spite of the errant Week 12: He is QB6 on a per-game basis and prior to this past week, he had only one finish outside the top 12. He is in an excellent get-right spot against the Jets this week and is someone I would target if I had a playoff spot already wrapped up since the Eagles do have a late Week 14 bye. After the bye, he faces Washington, the Giants and Washington again, which is a primo schedule for the fantasy playoffs.
Aaron Jones, RB, Packers
Jones was quiet in his return from injury and probably should have sat the game out to rest up for an additional two weeks. He rushed 10 times for 23 yards while backup A.J. Dillon saw 25 touches for 90 scrimmage yards and a touchdown against the Rams. I bet Jones returns to full strength as the Packers’ alpha after the team’s Week 13 bye, which also means only those who don’t necessarily need a win this week should target him.
Kareem Hunt, RB, Browns
Hunt is another target I like for managers not in desperate need for a win this week, as the Browns have a Week 13 bye. He missed five weeks on injured reserve with a calf issue and was quiet in his return against Baltimore. He saw seven carries for a team-high 20 yards while Nick Chubb saw eight carries for 16 yards. Chubb also tacked on two catches for 23 yards and out-snapped Hunt 30 to 23. Hunt’s lack of involvement in the passing game was a bit concerning but I think it is encouraging to see such an even timeshare with his counterpart. Hunt should offer a nice floor as a RB2 rest-of-season, especially in PPR formats.
David Montgomery, RB, Bears
The good news is Montgomery seems to be unrivaled in this Bears backfield in spite of Khalil Herbert’s valiant performances during Montgomery’s absence earlier this year. The bad news is the Bears have struggled to run the ball. Montgomery saw 17 carries for 46 yards (2.7 yards per carry) and caught three passes for 28 yards while Herbert saw four carries for nine yards. Justin Fields could return as early as Week 13 against the Cardinals, which should give a much-needed boost to Chicago’s ground attack. Montgomery’s workload alone gives him high-end RB2 value with upside.
Michael Pittman Jr., WR, Colts
Pittman has cooled off of late after a strong midseason push. He caught two of five targets for 23 yards in Week 11 in Buffalo and caught four of 10 targets for 53 yards in Week 12 against Tampa Bay. The production isn’t impressive but the targets are there for this immensely talented Year 2 wideout. I like his upside this week against Houston, though the Colts have a Week 14 bye, so this advice is reserved for those not on the fringe of making the playoffs.
Marquise Brown, WR, Ravens
Brown hasn’t been very electric over the last three weeks, including a one-game absence due to a thigh injury. He posted a pedestrian performance in Week 12 against the Browns and caught eight of 10 targets for 51 yards in a game in which quarterback Lamar Jackson struggled significantly. Brown is ultra talented and his targets make him much more than a big play-dependent receiver. He has seen double-digit targets in six of 10 games this year and four of the last four. His target share and talent give him sky-high upside as a high-end WR2.
DeVonta Smith, WR, Eagles
Smith posted back-to-back 20-point fantasy performances in Weeks 9 and 10 against the Chargers and Broncos. He has cooled off significantly since then and caught four of six for 61 yards in Week 11 against the Saints and two of four targets for 22 yards against the Giants. The rookie has his up-and-down moments that are inextricably tied to Jalen Hurts’ inconsistency as a passer. He has a solid matchup against the Jets in Week 13, but does have that dreaded Week 14 bye. His playoff schedule against Washington twice and the Giants should result in solid production as a WR2.
George Kittle, TE, 49ers
Kittle was a dud in Week 12 and snapped a three-game touchdown streak. He spent most of the game blocking and caught just one of two targets for 13 yards. He finished as TE38 in half PPR, but is TE6 on a per-game basis this season. He should see more targets with Deebo Samuel expected to miss one to two weeks due to a strained groin. The 49ers also have a soft schedule down the stretch: Over Weeks 13 through 17, San Francisco faces the Seahawks, Bengals, Falcons, Titans and Texans — that should set up Kittle for a nice finish to the year.
Week 13 Trade Targets To Sell High On
Below are nine Week 12 overperformers, or players whose values may decrease over the next few weeks whom you should try to offload via trades.
Mac Jones, QB, Patriots
Jones’ value is on the rise after posting his best game of the season. He was near perfect against the Titans and completed 23 of 32 attempts for 310 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions — good enough for 22 fantasy points and a QB7 finish for the week. In spite of the Patriots’ strong offensive performances of late, Jones only has three games all year with 20+ fantasy points, which is an artifact of Bill Belichick leaning heavily on the run. The Patriots face the Bills this week, who are allowing the fewest fantasy points to quarterbacks this year. After that, they have a Week 14 bye, then the Colts, Bills again and Jaguars, which isn’t an appealing schedule. The rookie has been playing well above expectations but he is an easy sell-high for me in this spot.
Leonard Fournette, RB, Buccaneers
Fournette exploded in Week 12 and posted, by far, his best game of the season. He saw 17 carries for 100 yards and three touchdowns and caught seven of eight targets for 31 yards and a passing touchdown against a tough Colts run defense. He faces Atlanta this week, which should be a nice matchup, but then has the Bills, Saints, Panthers, Jets and Panthers again in Week 18. Now would be a good time to sell high on Fournette at the pinnacle of his value.
Damien Harris, RB, Patriots
Harris posted 12 touches for 52 all-purpose yards and found the end zone in Week 12 against the Titans, but there were some elements about the game that warrant concern. For one, rookie Rhamondre Stevenson continued to be featured heavily and saw 20 snaps to Harris’ 22. Stevenson tallied nine carries for 46 yards while Brandon Bolden picked up a lot of work as a receiver. Harris’ days as the unrivaled alpha in this backfield have come and gone and his rest-of-season schedule is less than ideal. The Patriots face the Bills, then have a Week 14 bye, then face the Colts, Bills, Jaguars and Dolphins to finish out the year. Harris is a risky low-end RB2 with downside.
Dontrell Hilliard, RB, Titans
Hilliard was promoted from the Titans’ practice squad in Week 11 and has exploded over the past two weeks. He tallied 15 touches for 82 all-purpose yards against the Texans and posted 13 touches for 133 scrimmage yards against the Patriots. He split touches evenly with D’Onta Foreman and was out-touched by him 20 to 13. The Titans have a bye in Week 13, after which we could see Jeremy McNichols return to action. This depth chart is murky, and it’s unclear how it will shake out with all three backs healthy. Hilliard will likely be one of the top waiver adds this week even with the bye, but I would not be surprised if his role dwindles down the stretch.
J.D. McKissic, RB, Washington
McKissic had a monster Week 12 against the Seahawks and posted his best game of the year. He saw seven carries for 30 yards and a touchdown and caught all five targets for 26 yards and a receiving touchdown. It was his first trip to the end zone since Week 4 and he has been up and down all year. I do not trust this level of production, especially with Antonio Gibson back to full strength.
Michael Gallup, WR, Cowboys
Gallup led the Cowboys in receiving on Thanksgiving and caught five of eight targets for 106 yards. This stat line may look good in a vacuum, but he was out-targeted by Cedrick Wilson — who also had a 100-yard game — and the Cowboys were without Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb for this game. Gallup is a talented No. 3 receiver when the team is at full-strength, but I seriously doubt we’ll see another game like this from him all year.
Kendrick Bourne, WR, Patriots
Bourne is coming off of a fantastic Week 12 in which he caught five of six targets for 61 yards and a pair of touchdowns. He was out-targeted by Jakobi Meyers, who also had a better day yardage-wise and has to contend with both tight ends, as well as Brandon Bolden and Nelson Agholor for targets in this low-volume passing attack. Bourne has had nice moments, but remains touchdown-dependent and thus, difficult to predict. The Patriots have a negative schedule down the stretch that includes a Week 14 bye.
Tee Higgins, WR, Bengals
Higgins posted — by far — his best game of the season in Week 12 against the Steelers. He reeled in six of eight targets for 114 yards and a touchdown — his first 100-yard game all year. Prior to this week, he had not found the end zone since Week 2 and his production is linked to Ja’Marr Chase having an uncharacteristically quiet game (three catches for 39 yards). There is a lot of competition for targets from the Bengals’ receiving corps and I doubt Chase will take a backseat to Higgins in any consistent manner.
Dalton Schultz, TE, Cowboys
Schultz scored in Week 12 and caught three of seven targets for 46 yards, snapping a four-game streak of single-digit fantasy performances. His targets have gone up over the past two games with Cooper missing both contests and Lamb missing last week. The same logic applies here as it does to Gallup above, as I do not expect reliable TE1 production from him rest-of-season.