Week 13: Sleepers of the Week
If one of your normal starters is injured or facing a tough match-up, here are some players you might consider starting in their place. With bye weeks now upon us, these players can fill in for your normal starters who may be off. While these players may not be every week starters, they are good bets to perform well this week. Most of the players that will be listed are on fantasy rosters, but not normally starters.
Sam Bradford and the St. Louis Rams travel to Arizona to take on the Cardinals in week 13. Bradford is coming off the best game of his young career in which he threw for more than 300 yards and three touchdowns in a road win over the Denver Broncos. Bradford guided the Rams to their first road win of the season, and have pulled even with the Seattle Seahawks for the NFC West division lead. Bradford benefited from the return of playmaker Danario Alexander, and should continue to play well going forward. Bradford and the Rams have another good match-up this week against Arizona's 24th ranked pass defense. Fantasy owners can start Sam Bradford in week 13 and can expect at least 225 passing yards and one touchdown from the likely offensive rookie of the year.
Josh Freeman and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers return home to take on the Atlanta Falcons in week 13. Freeman is coming off a decent performance in which he amassed 189 total yards and one touchdown, with no turnovers in a close loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Freeman should have a bounce back game in week 13, with the Falcons coming to town. The Falcons have been vulnerable to the pass all season long, ranking 26th in the league in pass defense. Mike Williams has emerged as Freeman's go to wide receiver, and he should be able to continue his good rookie season this week. In their week nine match-up in Atlanta, Freeman totaled 215 yards and two touchdowns, while also throwing two interceptions in a close win for the Falcons. Fantasy owners who are in need of a spot start at the quarterback position this week can start Freeman and can expect 200 total yards and one touchdown from the Buccaneers' young quarterback.
Matt Hasselbeck and the Seattle Seahawks take on the Carolina Panthers at home in week 13. Hasselbeck has been on fire since returning from an injury, throwing for at least 280 yards and one touchdown in each of his past three games. He is coming off a game against the Chiefs in which he threw for 282 yards and two touchdowns, while also throwing two interceptions. The Seahawks have struggled running the ball all season, and their offensive focus should remain on the passing game going forward. The Carolina Panthers have been good statistically against the pass this season, but some of that can be attributed to the fact that they are always trailing in games, leading to opposing teams running the ball more than they usually would. I would expect the Seahawks to come out throwing this week, with Matt Hasselbeck having another good game. Fantasy owners can start Matt Hasselbeck this week and can expect at least 225 passing yards and one touchdown from the Seahawks' starting quarterback.
Felix Jones and the Dallas Cowboys travel to Indianapolis to take on the Colts in week 13. Jones is coming off a good performance in week 12 in which he ran for only 44 yards, but made up for that by catching seven passes for 69 yards in a Thanksgiving day loss to the New Orleans Saints. Jones will benefit from the absence of Marion Barber in week 13 against an extremely weak Colts run defense. The Colts rank 28th in the league against the run, and Jones should be able to exploit this at home this week. Jones will be dangerous in the passing game as well, making him an even better start in point per reception leagues. Fantasy owners can start Felix Jones as a RB 2 or flex play and can expect at least 85 total yards and one touchdown from the young running back.
Mike Tolbert and the San Diego Chargers return home off an impressive road win in Indianapolis to take on the Oakland Raiders. Tolbert has been excellent while filling in for Ryan Mathews this season, especially over the past two games. Tolbert has run for 214 yards and two touchdowns in the last two games and has added four catches for 57 yards through the air. Tolbert has had a knack for finding the endzone this season, scoring touchdowns in eight of 11 games for the Chargers. Tolbert should be able to score this week regardless of the status of Ryan Mathews. If Mathews does return, Tolbert's playing time will be impacted, making him a flex option instead of a RB 2. Fantasy owners should monitor the situation closely, and if Mathews is out once again, Tolbert can be expected to top 90 total yards and one touchdown against the league's 27th ranked run defense.