Every week, our Yahoo fantasy crew will unveil their boldest predictions for the action ahead. With the last of the byes here, our group of experts see several receivers in line for a big week, including Odell Beckham Jr. breaking through against the lowly Dolphins. Now, on to the Week 12 predictions!
Odell Beckham Jr. finally brings what we’ve been waiting for
OBJ investors, THIS IS THE WEEK! He’s gonna finish as a top-10 fantasy wideout, finally. OK, I realize it’s been a rough two-and-a-half months, but Odell Beckham Jr. has a prime matchup ahead against Miami. It should not surprise anyone to learn that the Dolphins defense has been relatively generous to opposing receivers, allowing the ninth-most fantasy points to the position and 8.1 yards per pass attempt for the year. Things are kinda/sorta trending up for the Browns’ offense, with Baker Mayfield coming off back-to-back multi-touchdown games (his first two of the season). - Andy Behrens
Josh Gordon scores his first TD as a Seahawk
Quitting Gordon is akin to trying to kick a 30-year smoking habit. It's ... difficult. For fleeting moments in his Seahawks debut, Gordon resembled the player of yesteryear. Strong, sure-handed and nearly impossible to corral on slant routes, he played a critical role down the stretch in Seattle’s upending of San Francisco. Now fully immersed in the playbook post-bye and with Tyler Lockett hurting, he could see an expanded role this week against Philadelphia’s secondary. On the season, the Eagles have given up an 8.4 average depth of target, seven 70-yard WR performances and the fourth-most fantasy points to the position. His likely coverage assignment, Jalen Mills (49.7 passer rating allowed), is a stiff challenger, but one of my many man-crushes should become a Wilson favorite on the road. - Brad Evans
Russell Gage is a huge profit in DFS
Gage has emerged as Atlanta’s third wide receiver (even seeing a target inside the five-yard line last week), and he’s setup in a highly favorable situation during Sunday’s game, which has the highest over/under of the week (51.5 points). Austin Hooper is out again, Julio Jones has missed practice this week with a foot injury that’s caused a noticeable limp, and the team struggles running with Brian Hill remaining the lead back, so the rookie wideout should be busy. Moreover, Tampa Bay’s defense ranks first against the run and 30th versus the pass in DVOA, having also allowed the most fantasy points to wide receivers (and the slot) this season. Gage finishes as a top-25 fantasy wide receiver and is a strong DFS ($15) option. - Dalton Del Don
Hunter Renfrow flexes fantasy muscle
Over the past four weeks, Derek Carr’s rapport with Hunter Renfrow has blossomed. Averaging 5.5 looks per game, the sure-handed rookie has tied TE Darren Waller in overall targets and is second in red zone opportunities with five since Week 8 (when Tyrell Williams returned from injury). In Week 12, he’ll face a Jets defense that’s decidedly better versus the run (No. 1 in Football Outsiders DVOA) than they are against the pass (allowing the second-most fantasy football points to opposing WRs).
While the Raiders are far from a high-flying operation (averaging the fifth-fewest pass attempts, 31.1, and the eighth-most rush attempts, 28.3, per contest), I expect Gruden to prioritize the passing game. This figures to mean a lot of check-downs to Renfrow, who will be matched up against Brain Poole (allowing a passer rating of 115 when targeted) in the slot. The ceiling with Renfrow is undeniably capped, but his floor in PPR-friendly formats is flex-worthy, especially in the season’s final week of byes. (Fearless Forecast: 6-64-1) - Liz Loza
Might seem scary, but Laird, Harry
There are few absolutes in fantasy, but we know of one: Kalen Ballage stinks. He’s a road to nowhere. And after watching Patrick Laird collect six catches last week (okay, many in garbage time), I’m eager for more Woodheading. I actively grabbed Laird when he was zero percent owned in Yahoo. The tag is now one percent. I guess bold means something different to everyone. It’s partly out of desperation, but I’ll be using Laird in some deeper leagues this week.
The Patriots might be 9-1, but this offense has problems. Josh Gordon is gone, Rob Gronkowski long retired, Mohamed Sanu on the shelf. N’Keal Harry had a modest debut at Philly, but at least he got his cleats wet. Perhaps he’s ready for a juicier role against Dallas. At 11 percent rostered, it’s time to kick the tires. I’m calling for one big splash play, and a playable Week 12 line. - Scott Pianowski
Jimmy G hucks another three-plus TDs
You have to be impressed with the resilience of the 49ers quarterback. In a game where he was without their leading rusher, star tight end, left tackle and with a hobbled No. 1 receiver, Jimmy Garoppolo kept the team fighting for a win over a dangerous Cardinals team. He threw for a career-high 424 yards and dropped four touchdowns at a 76 percent completion rate. Of course, the matchup with the Cardinals defense is gorgeous but Green Bay hasn’t been playing much better lately. The Packers have allowed the fifth-highest yards per play and continue to fall as a pass stop unit (16th by Football Outsiders). If the weapons in Garoppolo’s arsenal are healthy, and Deebo Samuel continues to breakout, he can truly enjoy a big game against this Packers squad in what should be a fantasy-friendly scoring environment. - Matt Harmon