Week 13 Fantasy Football Fallout

by Emerson Beery · Fantasy Football

This is Week 13 Fantasy Football Fallout! As the echoes of Week 13 reverberate across the NFL landscape, there were plenty of surprises, breakouts, and eyebrow-raising performances. In this comprehensive recap, we delve into the heart of the action, dissecting the pivotal moments, standout players, and unforeseen plot twists that unfolded on the field. From emerging stars making a fantasy football splash to established names facing unexpected challenges, we’ll dive into the latest fantasy football news as we approach the playoffs.

Join us as we navigate the highs and lows of Week 13, offering a detailed analysis of the events that promise to resonate until the final whistle of the regular season.

Week 13 Fantasy Football Fallout

Trey McBride’s Monster Breakout

Trey McBride is entering elite tight end territory after an incredible stretch of production following the offense’s shift away from Zach Ertz. His 17-game pace over the last eight games is 102 receptions for 1,128 yards and four touchdowns. Even before the return of Kyler Murray, Trey McBride was finding success in a bad offense. Despite ranking No. 22 in average depth of target, he is No. 6 in yards after catch.

McBride isn’t an elite athlete. However, he has great hands and a knack for creating space from defenders. His comparison on PlayerProfiler is Heath Miller. There are a lot of similarities there. The only question is how high he will go in fantasy football drafts in 2024 after a breakout season. McBride doesn’t have the explosiveness that Dalton Kincaid or Sam LaPorta have. Nonetheless, he should be a borderline top 5 fantasy football tight end in drafts next year. This should be regardless of who is the quarterback in Arizona.

Week 13 Fantasy Football Risers and Fallers

Bryce Young’s Baffling Bust Performance

After being selected with the No. 1 overall pick in this past April’s NFL Draft, Bryce Young‘s rookie season has been nothing short of a disaster. He is No. 31 in the NFL in QBR and is No. 35 in yards per attempt. The offense hasn’t been able to generate any success. Additionally, the Panthers are on pace to have the worst record in the NFL. Young isn’t anywhere close to fantasy relevancy in 2023. However, fantasy managers shouldn’t forget about the young quarterback.

The Panthers certainly should have selected C.J. Stroud with the No. 1 overall pick, but nothing can be taken away from Young’s rookie season. As a pocket-passing quarterback with a big arm, sticking him in one of the least talented offenses in the NFL with poor offensive line play was always a recipe for disaster. There were several impressive throws he made this past weekend though that showed why Carolina was willing to give up so much to acquire him. Much like Trevor Lawrence‘s first year in the NFL, consider this a throw-away year for Young. He could have sneaky upside in superflex leagues in 2024 if Carolina can improve the offense.

Jake Browning is Better than Expected

Not so fast on giving up on the Bengals for fantasy football purposes. After struggling against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 12, Jake Browning was a top 5 fantasy football quarterback this past weekend. He was poised and completed 32 of 37 pass attempts for 354 yards and a touchdown. Regardless, the Jaguars are in the bottom 5 in terms of fantasy points given up to the position. Browning should remain off fantasy radars.

What fantasy managers should be excited about is the fantasy prospects of Ja’Marr Chase. He had his second-best fantasy performance of the season and was targeted 12 times. Browning should continue to focus on getting the ball to the team’s best player as we approach the fantasy playoffs. Furthermore, he has shown enough competency that we can expect top-10 wide receiver value from Chase down the stretch.

Joe Mixon is a strong RB2 as we head into the fantasy football playoffs as well. He is No. 1 in the NFL in Opportunity Share and has recorded a top-12 running back finish in four of his last six matchups. Most excitingly, Mixon has seen an increase in passing work, recording 23 targets over the last five weeks. He may never be efficient. However, Mixon will continue to receive enough volume to be a must-start fantasy running back.

Week 13 Fantasy Football Waiver Wire

D’Andre Swift’s Dismaying Usage

After falling outside the top 25 running back two weeks in a row, it’s time to be concerned about D’Andre Swift. His rush attempts have decreased for three straight weeks. While he did have an injury designation coming into the weekend, six rush attempts and ceding a large portion of the passing work to Kenneth Gainwell wasn’t what fantasy managers anticipated. His status needs to be monitored ahead of a tough matchup against the Cowboys in Week 14 as well.

Touchdowns and passing work are the biggest drivers of fantasy success for the running back position. Without consistent target volume, and Jalen Hurts being the primary option near the goal line, Swift will be tough to trust in fantasy lineups down the stretch. His role in a high-powered offense will still put him in the RB2 mix, but he has a relatively low floor.

Pierce and Singeltary Fizzling in Fantasy

While Houston’s future is bright in the hands of C.J. Stroud, this backfield situation is turning into a mess. After finding success with Devin Singletary over the last several weeks, the Texans inexplicably turned back to Dameon Pierce as their lead rusher. Pierce has found little success in 2023, ranking No. 55 in yards per touch among running backs.

With a tough schedule coming up, and the Texans seemingly wanting to go with a hot-hand approach, both running backs should be off the fantasy radar. Houston’s remaining schedule includes the Jets, the Titans (twice), and the Browns. Given their success through the air, the Texans will have no reason to heavily rely on either player. Given a preference though, I still prefer Singletary for his role in the passing game with Tank Dell now out for the season. Consider him a low-upside flex option with more upside in PPR leagues.

Ekeler’s Fantasy Fumble

Injuries and poor efficiency have left Austin Ekeler as the RB28 in fantasy football leagues through 13 weeks. After recording over four yards per carry every year of his career thus far, his average has fallen to 3.54 in 2023. Ekeler’s snap and opportunity share remain in line with previous years. However, over the previous two seasons, he paced the NFL in touchdowns and receptions among running backs. With scoring opportunities being few and far between and dwindling target volume, Ekeler’s fantasy value is tumbling.

Even through offensive struggles in 2022, the Chargers have forced the ball to Ekeler. Ekeler has received eight or more targets on nine occasions. That has only happened once thus far in 2022, and that isn’t a focal point with new offensive coordinator Kellen Moore. This marks a five-year low in fantasy points per game coming from the passing game for Ekeler. Nonetheless, Ekeler’s fantasy schedule is excellent with matchups against the Broncos (twice), Raiders, and an injured Bills’ defense. With limited rushing volume compared to most backs and the emergence of Joshua Kelley, I still worry about Ekeler’s fantasy production though. He remains in the RB2 mix but with an easy matchup against the Broncos. If he doesn’t perform, fantasy managers should look elsewhere in the playoffs.