With waiver candidates snatched up this morning, I’m back in my weekly spot checking in with my top fantasy football streamers for Week 12. This week, my free agency deep dive will include favorites (my locks) and honorable mentions (more risk, or reliant on an injury update). For certain positions I’ll even recommend streamer options to avoid.
Disclaimer: As always, I will try and look past the most obvious waiver candidates, targeting Week 12 Streamers that are available in less than 40 percent of all ESPN leagues.
My selections will be based on their matchups, recent play, and upside potential in deeper PPR formats. I recommend checking weather and injury/Covid updates for each streamer in the days leading up to each game, being that this article is written on Tuesday or Wednesday of each week.
Your Week 12 Byes:
Week 12 Fantasy Streamers: QB
Well, my headline streamer did not go as planned in Week 11. We had the Jameis Winston picture all ready to go for the article. The former fantasy stud slated up for a big game against a pathetic Falcons secondary. I was screaming his name from the rooftops defiantly… life was good.
Then Sean Payton decided to throw us all for a loop announcing Taysom Hill as the starting QB. If you checked back in on Twitter, I did try and recommend some last-minute adjustments like Hill or Adrian Peterson at running back (the second one didn’t work out), but for most of you it was probably too late already, and I apologize for that.
Kirk Cousins did hit if you went that route, but most of the long-shots didn’t. With Taysom as our number one waiver wire candidate this week, let’s take a look at some streamer options not necessarily on the waiver market.
Philip Rivers (IND) – 13.8% (v TEN)
It actually kills me to headline Rivers because I am not a fan of trusting in the veteran gunslinger. But he does have the matchup that I have the most faith in here in Week 12.
Rivers is settling into a groove in this Indy unit finally, with Michael Pittman Jr. and Nyheim Hines, and Trey Burton as all these different role players slotting in alongside the T.Y. Hilton’s and Jonathan Taylor’s of the offense.
Rivers has thrown for 250-plus yards in four of his last five, and 300-plus twice over that period. The first time he faced the Titans in Tennessee, he hit on 74.4 percent of passes with 308 yards and a touchdown. The Titans D added Desmond King, but also lost Jadeveon Clowney. It’s ranked 22nd against QB’s. This defense does not scare me whatsoever and if you watched the first meeting, it didn’t scare Rivers either. Now he’s playing at home in a weather-friendly dome.
Daniel Jones (NYG) – 17.8% (@CIN)
Another quarterback that I’m not usually crazy about, but trust this week, is Daniel Jones. The Giants second-year pro has finally begun to limit turnovers in recent weeks. With Saquon Barkley as a distant memory, this offense is now tailored around Jones.
He runs the ball well, he’s passing at a better accuracy rate than usual. More importantly, this very young and inexperienced offensive line is finally beginning to gel a little bit.
In a matchup against a lousy Bengals secondary that just lost Joe Burrow on the other side of the ball, I expect the G-Men to dominate time of possession and tire out this Cincy D in what turns out to be another victory for NYG.
Teddy Bridgewater/P.J. Walker – 38.5/1.8% (@MIN)
Always got to give my boy Teddy some love. He didn’t end up playing last week, but whenever he’s out there I really recommend taking a shot with the Carolina QB.
Part of this is what I’ve seen from Joe Brady’s offense all year long. This dude can coach, and I have no doubt Brady will be a head coach sooner rather than later. Bridgewater is obviously the safer fantasy play, but I actually didn’t hate what I saw from XFL star P.J. Walker last week in this system.
This unit moves the ball, and so long as turnovers are limited (Teddy B is much better at this aspect), the Panthers are a solid source of fantasy production.
This Vikings defense isn’t very intimidating either. Andy Dalton put up decent numbers against it last week so that’s all you need to know. Minnesota even plays in a dome. Start Bridgewater if he plays, consider Walker if he doesn’t and you’re desperate.
(TRIPLE DOWN) Alex Smith (WSH) – 17.4% (@DAL)
Wow, three straight weeks I list Alex Smith as a long-shot play. So far he’s one for two when I’ve picked him, not a great showing last week. This Dallas defense is just one I like to bet against though.
They simply cannot cover, and besides Demarcus Lawrence they rarely muster up any pass rush either. Even in a spirited victory effort last week Cousins put up 20-plus against them, I think I’ll take my chances with Smith and a diverse compliment of weapons forming in Washington.
QB Streamers to Avoid
Baker Mayfield (CLE) – 22.1% (@JAX)
Baker has another great matchup, but you just cannot trust Kevin Stefanski to call passing plays right now. The running game with Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt is just torching defenses.
The Jags can’t guard the pass, but they also can’t guard the run. Maybe Mayfield has one of his rare three-touchdown games. But it’s not a risk I’m willing to take with the RB’s dominating all the spoils in Cleveland.
Kirk Cousins (MIN) – 29.3% (v CAR)
Different quarterback, similar reasoning. Carolina has struggled against the run this season but they’ve actually managed to perform pretty well against the pass. They shut down Stafford and a limited Lions offense last week, and I don’t necessarily expect that. But I do think Dalvin Cook will dominate the game plan with Adam Thielen possibly OUT due to COVID.
Week 12 Fantasy Streamers: RB
Running backs went well last week. Gave you Salvon Ahmed as a must-play over Matt Breida, that was correct. Gave you La’Mical Perine as my secondary streamer and he vultured a TD from Frank Gore. My HM didn’t do anything special and my late Adrian Peterson Twitter suggestion totally blanked. But if the main plays hit I can’t be too upset with that. The big waiver wire RB’s in my opinion are Gus Edwards (Dobbins/Ingram out), Frank Gore (Perine hit IR after the game), Ahmed if he’s still out there, and possibly Sony Michel healthy in New England. But for all the latest waiver wire news check out Rich King’s weekly spot. Here are my top streaming options for RB Week 12.
James White (NE) – 34.8% (v ARI)
White may be another waiver candidate, as he slipped to under 40 percent rostered just before Rex Burkhead’s injury. Now with Rex out, White has already begun to capitalize as Newton’s primary pass-catcher out of the backfield. He had his most involvement since Week 6 on Sunday against the Texans, catching six passes for 64 yards. New England may be forced to keep up with the Cardinals’ high-octane offense this week, which would mean more White and less Harris or Michel.
Boston Scott (PHI) – 34.5% (v SEA)
If you can’t get your hands on any of the waiver targets or our top streamer James White, you might find a similar angle in Boston Scott this week. Philly may be playing from behind against the Seahawks, which doesn’t necessarily mean Scott will be o