Week 13 of the fantasy football season is upon us. This week on Amazon Prime, we get a game between two divisional AFC East contenders as the Buffalo Bills head to Gillette Stadium to face the New England Patriots. With no time to waste, here are the top start/sit plays for Week 13 of Thursday Night Football.
Week 13 TNF Fantasy Football Start ’ems
Josh Allen, QB, Buffalo Bills
Josh Allen is one of those players I enjoy watching play football. Last week was no exception, as he totaled 331 yards and three touchdowns with an interception against the Lions on Thanksgiving to become only the second quarterback this year to have multiple games of 250+ passing yards and 75+ rushing yards.
That’s the type of success we’re expecting again on Thursday night. In their last meeting, Allen threw for 314 passing yards and three touchdowns with 64 rushing yards. Despite being a challenging environment to play in, Allen has a 9:0 touchdown to interception ratio in his three starts in Foxborough.
He thrives on Thursday night, with 14 total touchdowns in his four primetime starts. Although New England’s pass defense appears to be a strength, they have been shredded against good quarterbacks, such as Tua Tagovailoa, Kirk Cousins, and Allen. As he has been all season, start Allen as the overall QB1 for Week 13.
Devin Singletary, RB, Buffalo Bills
Despite the additions of Nyheim Hines and James Cook, this is Devin Singletary’s backfield. Last week, Singletary dominated the snaps (78%) and rushed for 72 yards on 14 carries against the Lions while catching his lone target for 8 yards. While his 9.0 PPR was a disappointment based on the matchup, Singletary has 41 PPR points over the last three weeks.
Unfortunately, this week isn’t the best of matchups. New England is stout against the position, ranking first in DVOA and EPA over their last four games while allowing just 9.13 PPR (first). Singletary had 78 total yards (39 rec and 39 rush) the last time these teams met and is an RB3 for Week 13.
Rhamondre Stevenson, RB, New England Patriots
Rhamondre Stevenson is playing like a man possessed. He’s also playing as if he is the only way the Patriots can move consistently. Since Week 5, Stevenson has averaged 20 touches and 110 yards per game. Over the Patriots’ last four games, he has a 25.2% target share which leads all running backs, and he’s second only to Austin Ekeler in receiving yards per game.
Last week, Stevenson led the team with 112 scrimmage yards thanks to career-highs in receptions (nine) and receiving yards (76). He has 70+ scrimmage yards in 10 games in a row and 6+ receptions and 55+ receiving yards in four of his last five.
It’s been common practice to fade players going against the Bills, but that’s not the case as of late. Although they are 12th in rushing EPA and sixth in DVOA since Week 7, the Bills are 28th in success rate and 23rd in points allowed (26.08). Based on this current workload, Stevenson is a matchup-proof weekly starter for fantasy.
Stefon Diggs, WR, Buffalo Bills
Ever since he stepped foot in Buffalo, Stefon Diggs has been everything and more the Bills could’ve hoped for when they acquired him from the Minnesota Vikings. He had eight receptions for 77 yards in a touchdown last week and has five or more receptions and 75+ yards in six of his last seven games. Additionally, he’s looking to make it three in a row with a score.
None of this should be a surprise when you look at his volume. His 29.8% target share is sixth-best in the NFL, and he’s seventh in YPRR. Diggs is also second in the league in receptions and third in yards. Although New England has held him to under 75 yards in the last two meetings of these teams, Diggs is the No. 4-ranked wide receiver for fantasy football in Week 13.
Jakobi Meyers, WR, New England Patriots
Unfortunately, Jakobi Meyers comes into Week 13 less than 100% for the Patriots (not like anyone is 100% at this point in the year, but you get my point).
Meyers suffered a shoulder injury early in last week’s game against the Vikings but managed to return. So while he has been limited at practice, I’m not overly worried about his availability.
Myers has a 23.2% target share and a 32.2% air-yard share, and despite the sporadic QB play, he is 24th in points per game at 13.4, which is ahead of D.K. Metcalf (13.3).
The Bills’ cornerback room hasn’t been as strong as in years past, so I don’t necessarily fear this matchup. I’d have no issue starting Myers as a WR3 on Thursday Night Football for Week 13.
Gabe Davis, WR, Buffalo Bills
Much like that fabled box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get with Gabe Davis. He comes in as the WR27 in fantasy with a 30.4% air-yard share and a 16.8% target share, which would look better if Davis and the Bills starters hadn’t been pulled in multiple games this year due to blowout victories.
The issue has been consistency. In a prime matchup last week, Davis caught four of his five targets for just 38 yards. But we also have to recognize the big play capability Davis brings. What doesn’t help Davis is that New England is second in DVOA against deep passing attempts, so we’re highly reliant on those one or two significant opportunities for Davis to cash in. In likely another feast-or-famine game, Davis is a volatile WR3.
Week 13 TNF Fantasy Football Sit ’ems
Mac Jones, QB, New England Patriots
Well, that was unexpected. After struggling virtually all season and nearly losing his job to Bailey Zappe, Mac Jones was on fire against the Vikings. The QB7 on the week, Jones completed 28-of-39 attempts for a career-high 338 yards with two touchdowns.
Jones has begun to actually take a few chances as of late, as he sits fourth in yards per attempt over the last two weeks. It also highlights an interesting trend in how the Patriots operate. Although they are still near the bottom regarding neutral game script pace, they are fourth in neutral passing rate over their last three games at 63%.
When you start to factor in that the Bills are 22nd in yards, 25th in EPA, and 19th in DVOA, Jones doesn’t look like as bad an option as you might have initially thought. While I would stay away from him in 1QB leagues and sit him in Week 13, Jones could surprise some people as a QB2 if the Bills’ pass rush struggles to get to him with Von Miller out.
James Cook, RB, Buffalo Bills
Do yourself a favor and stay away from James Cook for now. While he did have an 86-yard game against the Cleveland Browns in Week 11, he played on just 14 snaps with four touches and 18 total yards against the Lions.
The only “bright spot” was his five targets, but there’s not enough meat on the bone for me to trust Cook. Without any red zone work or consistent volume, Cook is outside starting a consideration so long as Singletary is healthy. That being said, I would continue to stash him.
Nyheim Hines, RB, Buffalo Bills
Nothing to see here. Move along. Nyheim Hines hasn’t played on more than 10 snaps in a game and is 100% droppable. His biggest value for the Bills is as a punt returner.
Isaiah McKenzie, WR, Buffalo Bills
This one is tricky, as Isiah McKenzie is trending up. He saw nearly 24% of targets from Allen while recording six receptions for 96 yards and a touchdown last week. Yet, on the season, he sits just north of 12% in target share with an 11% air-yard share, which isn’t necessarily surprising based on how he is utilized in this offense.
But, as I said, he is trending up. McKenzie is coming off one of his best games of the year and has four red-zone targets in his last three games. Additionally, the last time these teams met up, McKenzie saw career-highs in receptions (11) and yards (125) and found the end zone in Week 16 of last year.
If you are shooting for upside out of your Flex position, I can make a case for McKenzie as a low-end WR4/high-end WR5, but you likely have more reliable options on your roster, as last week was McKenzie’s first game inside the top-36 since Week 4.
DeVante Parker, WR, New England Patriots
Catching all four of his targets for 80 yards against the Vikings, DeVante Parker had his best game of the year since Week 3 against the Ravens. His 87.8% route run rate led the team with Meyers out for a bit of time, and he continues to serve as the vertical threat, leading the team in deep targets with a 17.8 aDOT.
But there is zero consistency in his game or role. We could easily see Nelson Agholor or Kendrick Bourne impact his snap count at any moment. The Bills have also been outstanding about not allowing deep targets, which mostly negates all of Parker’s value. Although he had a decent game last week, Parker should not be started in Week 13.
Dawson Knox, TE, Buffalo Bills
Dawson Knox is somewhat intriguing, strictly based on the power of the Bills’ offense. Even then, he’s had a pretty down year by his standards. Knox caught both of his targets for just 17 yards last week and has not scored a touchdown since Week 8. He does have 50 or more yards in two of his previous three games and, over the last six weeks, has a 25.5% target share and a 26.7% end zone target share.
New England has been brutal against tight ends, though. They are 11th in DVOA against the position, fourth in catch rate, and 13th in points allowed over the last four. I get it if you don’t have a better option because of how poor the position is, but unless you’re banking on Knox scoring a touchdown, I would sit him in favor of someone like Greg Dulcich or even Even Engram this week.
Hunter Henry, TE, New England Patriots
Hunter Henry is another example of a touchdown-dependent tight end. That’s great when he scores but gives you nothing if he doesn’t.
Last week, Henry caught three of his five targets for 63 yards and scored his first touchdown since Week 6 to finish as the TE6 on the week. It also marked his first time scoring double-digit fantasy points since that game against Cleveland when he found the end zone.
Henry has just an 8.9% target share over the last four games. With the Bills sitting second in DVOA and 19th in points allowed, and with the team having yet to surrender a touchdown to the position, he’s a lower-end TE2 for Week 13 that I would recommend sitting.