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After a week with the targets rising, Week 13 fell back to mediocrity for pass catchers. With only 19 wide receivers, running backs and tight ends securing double-digit targets, the Week 13 targets are hard to come by.

The pass catchers that did see targets shouldn’t be surprises for Fantasy owners. While the targets were down, no big name players got shut out (a la Brandin Cooks, Week 12). Some players had less than usual (Mike Evans with six, as an example), but the targets were as expected.

Fantasy owners should still look at the targets to see if some players are stepping up in time for the playoffs. Week 14 is either the last week of the regular season for owners or the first week of the playoffs. While it’s not the best time to be altering your line-up, sometimes it’s a necessity.

With bad match-ups for some wide receivers, Fantasy owners need to put their best line-up out there. Sometimes that may mean benching someone that you’ve used to this point but you just don’t trust in a given week. In that case, look to a player that may be up-and-coming on their team and getting hot just when you need them.

Note that if a player has an asterisk next to his name in the double-digit target box, it indicates that they also had double-digit targets in the week they last played (taking into account bye weeks).

As always, none of the charts below show total receptions, total fantasy points or touchdowns. The sole purpose of this analysis is to look at targets.

Week 13 Target Watch

Each week I will be reviewing the targets from the past week, the season and even digging deeper by running back and tight end. I will also be analyzing any trends I find along the way.

Week 13 Only Double-Digit Targets

Player Team Targets
Odell Beckham Jr. * New York Giants 16
Zach Ertz Philadelphia Eagles 15
Jarvis Landry Miami Dolphins 14
Julian Edelman * New England Patriots 12
David Johnson * Arizona Cardinals 12
Robby Anderson New York Jets 12
Kyle Rudolph * Minnesota Vikings 12
Larry Fitzgerald Arizona Cardinals 11
Dennis Pitta Baltimore Ravens 11
Ladarius Green Pittsburgh Steelers 11
Michael Crabtree * Oakland Raiders 11
Jordy Nelson * Green Bay Packers 10
Allen Robinson Jacksonville Jaguars 10
T.Y. Hilton Indianapolis Colts 10
Steve Smith Sr. Baltimore Ravens 10
Demaryius Thomas Denver Broncos 10
Golden Tate Detroit Lions 10
Malcolm Mitchell New England Patriots 10
Dorial Green-Beckham * Philadelphia Eagles 10

 

With all but two teams playing in Week 13, the targets should have been higher. However, it was a tough week for quarterbacks, which means it was a tough week for pass catchers. Only 19 players had double-digit targets in Week 13, and only 14 of those were wide receivers. The weather is also a factor now that it’s December, as snowy conditions traditionally mean less passes thrown.

More players are staying on this list for multiple weeks, although some are still falling off and being added. Malcolm Mitchell has 17 targets in the past two weeks. He caught eight of his 10 targets in Week 13 for 82 yards. While he didn’t find the end zone, he is becoming a larger part of the Patriots offense with Rob Gronkowski out for the season. He’s 40 percent owned in Fantasy leagues, and is a worthwhile WR3 with upside for the playoffs.

Fantasy owners may want to chase Dorial Green-Beckham’s targets (18 over the past two weeks) but buyer beware. Green-Beckham was hurt in Week 13 and missed practice on Wednesday. He also had an uptick in targets with Jordan Matthews missing most of the second half in Week 12 and all of Week 13. Leave him on the waiver wire.

Top 12 Target Leaders This Season

Player Team Wk 8 Wk 9 Wk 10 Wk 11 Wk 12 Wk 13 Total
Mike Evans TB 11 17 5 13 11 6 138
Antonio Brown PIT BYE 11 18 10 6 7 127
Odell Beckham Jr NYG BYE 10 11 7 11 16 125
Larry Fitzgerald ARI 11 BYE 18 7 4 11 121
Jordy Nelson GB 9 13 18 5 12 10 118
Allen Robinson JAX 15 11 13 7 4 10 116
Emmanuel Sanders DEN 10 11 9 BYE 10 9 114
T.Y. Hilton IND 6 8 BYE 9 5 10 114
DeAndre Hopkins HOU 7 BYE 13 6 10 8 113
Terrelle Pryor CLE 13 7 9 10 12 BYE 113
Julio Jones ATL 5 11 16 BYE 7 9 113
Michael Crabtree OAK 16 6 BYE 7 13 11 112

 

The Top 12 target leaders has remained the same, which is to be expected by this time of year. All teams have had a bye week, so everyone is on a level playing field. Mike Evans, despite having a low target game, is still the player with the most targets in the league. The Buccaneers play the New Orleans Saints twice in the Fantasy playoffs (Weeks 14 and 16) so Evans should continue to be a target hog.

It may be a surprise to see Allen Robinson, Emmanuel Sanders, or DeAndre Hopkins on this list as their Fantasy production as a whole has been lacking. Out of those three, only Sanders is in the Top 20 for fantasy points in a PPR format. Robinson is barely in the Top 30 and Hopkins is just outside the Top 30. In addition, Robinson’s playoff schedule is brutal (MIN, @HOU, TEN). This is a case that even though the targets are there, the Fantasy points aren’t.

Top Tight End Targets In Week 13

Zach Ertz Philadelphia Eagles 15
Kyle Rudolph Minnesota Vikings 12
Dennis Pitta Baltimore Ravens 11
Ladarius Green Pittsburgh Steelers 11
C.J. Fiedorowicz Houston Texans 9
Jimmy Graham Seattle Seahawks 9
Trey Burton Philadelphia Eagles 9
Cameron Brate Tampa Bay Buccaneers 9

 

The tight end list is long this week, with a lot of targets heading to tight ends. Two Philadelphia Eagles tight ends appear on the list, which is the result of Jordan Matthews missing this game. While Zach Ertz has TE2 value moving forward, Fantasy owners should avoid Burton.

Ladarius Green, however, should be owned by fantasy owners looking for a tight end option for the playoffs. After missing most of the season because he was on the IR, he finally put up a game to put him back on the Fantasy radar. His snap count has been rising, and he had six receptions for 110 yards and a touchdown in Week 13. The Steelers will likely continue to have him involved in the offense. He only owned in less than a quarter of Fantasy leagues, so pick him up.

Top Running Back Targets In Week 13

David Johnson Arizona Cardinals 12
T.J. Yeldon Jacksonville Jaguars 7
Jay Ajayi Miami Dolphins 7
LeSean McCoy Buffalo Bills 7
LeVeon Bell Pittsburgh Steelers 7

 

Despite both Patriots running backs making this list in Week 12, neither make the list for Week 13. David Johnson still remains the only running back with double-digit targets. He’s a clear RB1 (although you don’t need this column to tell you that).

T.J. Yeldon was questionable heading into this game, but he did have seven targets. Yeldon only caught three of his seven targets for 31 yards. He’s a risky running back option. He faces the Vikings in Week 14, and he’s not a recommended Fantasy option. He’s banged up, Chris Ivory is dealing with a hamstring injury and Denard Robinson is also dealing with an ankle injury. The entire Jacksonville running game is one to be avoided.

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