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Phinsider Week 12 Fantasy Football Rankings

It’s time for a Thanksgiving edition of Justin Hier’s weekly fantasy football rankings!

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

It’s turkey week in America! That means we have multiple Thursday NFL games to choose from this week, which in turn means that fantasy footballers need to have their rosters set up earlier than usual as multiple stars will take the field before the usual Sunday slate of matchups.

Each week of the NFL season, I’ll be giving an updated look at where the top players at each fantasy position stand, with matchups and injury concerns taken into account. For the sake of continuity, I’ll only be using standard scoring when constructing the rankings, so be sure to consider that when setting your lineups.

Quarterback

  1. Tom Brady - vs Mia
  2. Russell Wilson - @ SF
  3. Carson Wentz - vs Chi
  4. Matt Ryan - vs TB
  5. Drew Brees - @ LAR
  6. Kirk Cousins - vs NYG
  7. Philip Rivers - @ Dal
  8. Cam Newton - @ NYJ
  9. Jared Goff - vs NO
  10. Ben Roethlisberger - vs GB
  11. Alex Smith - vs Buf
  12. Dak Prescott - vs LAC
  13. Derek Carr - vs Den
  14. Marcus Mariota - @ Ind
  15. Matthew Stafford - vs Min
  16. Case Keenum - @ Det
  17. Jacoby Brissett - vs Ten
  18. Matt Moore - @ NE
  19. Eli Manning - @ Was
  20. Andy Dalton - vs Cle

Matt Ryan and Russell Wilson have my two favorite matchups of the week, as they’re going up against Tampa Bay’s and San Francisco’s lowly secondaries respectively. Marcus Mariota also has a strong matchup and could offer decent streaming potential if he’s been dropped in your league. Matthew Stafford has been steady this season, but I’d avoid him as he’s playing Minnesota’s defense, a unit that just held the high flying Rams offense to seven points.

Running Back

  1. Todd Gurley - vs NO
  2. Le’Veon Bell - vs GB
  3. Mark Ingram - @ LAR
  4. Melvin Gordon - @ Dal
  5. Kareem Hunt - vs Buf
  6. LeSean McCoy - @ KC
  7. Alvin Kamara - @ LAR
  8. Leonard Fournette - @ Ari
  9. Jordan Howard - @ Phi
  10. Carlos Hyde - vs Sea
  11. Tevin Coleman - vs TB
  12. Lamar Miller - @ Bal
  13. DeMarco Murray - @ Ind
  14. Christian McCaffrey - @ NYJ
  15. Latavius Murray - @ Det
  16. Adrian Peterson - vs Jax
  17. Samaje Perine - vs NYG
  18. Duke Johnson Jr. - @ Cin
  19. Dion Lewis - vs Mia
  20. Jay Ajayi - vs Chi

Tevin Coleman is one of this week’s best matchup plays if Devonta Freeman continues to sit with a concussion. If Freeman ends up playing, he will virtually replace Coleman in these rankings. Adrian Peterson is essentially a boom/bust play given the volatility of Arizona’s offense, while Samaje Perine jumps into this week’s rankings by winning Washington’s starting running back job by default with Chris Thompson and Rob Kelley out for the year due to injury. Leonard Fournette’s ankle injury will be one to keep track of this week. He is likely to play through it, but the team could limit his carries to keep him as fresh as possible during their playoff push.

Wide Receiver

  1. Antonio Brown - vs GB
  2. DeAndre Hopkins - @ Bal
  3. Michael Thomas - @ LAR
  4. Julio Jones - vs TB
  5. Brandin Cooks - vs Mia
  6. Mike Evans - @ Atl
  7. Doug Baldwin - @ SF
  8. Adam Thielen - @ Det
  9. A.J. Green - vs Cle
  10. Jarvis Landry - @ NE
  11. Larry Fitzgerald - vs Jax
  12. Alshon Jeffery - vs Chi
  13. Dez Bryant - vs LAC
  14. Tyreek Hill - vs Buf
  15. Keenan Allen - @ Dal
  16. JuJu Smith-Schuster - vs GB
  17. Demaryius Thomas - @ Oak
  18. Golden Tate - vs Min
  19. Devin Funchess - @ NYJ
  20. T.Y. Hilton - vs Ten

Fantasy owners of JuJu Smith-Schuster need to watch out for the young pass catcher’s hamstring injury. Although the wideout should be available against Green Bay’s porous secondary on Sunday, soft tissue injuries are fickle and could strike at any moment once aggravated. Julio Jones is looking at a good matchup to finally break out in a big way after being productive, yet underwhelming, for much of the season. T.Y. Hilton has consistently been the epitome of boom-or-bust, so play him with caution against Tennessee.

Tight End

  1. Travis Kelce - vs Buf
  2. Rob Gronkowski - vs Mia
  3. Jimmy Graham - @ SF
  4. Zach Ertz - vs Chi
  5. Evan Engram - @ Was
  6. Delanie Walker - @ Ind
  7. Jared Cook - vs Den
  8. Vernon Davis - vs NYG
  9. Greg Olsen - @ NYJ
  10. Jack Doyle - vs Ten
  11. Kyle Rudolph - @ Det
  12. Austin Hooper - vs TB
  13. Cameron Brate - vs Atl
  14. Jason Witten - vs LAC
  15. Benjamin Watson - vs Hou
  16. Austin Seferian-Jenkins - vs Car
  17. Tyler Kroft - vs Cle
  18. Hunter Henry - @ Dal
  19. Julius Thomas - @ NE
  20. O.J. Howard - @ Atl

Greg Olsen is the tight end making headlines this week, as he’s returning from injured reserve after a foot injury sidelined him for the first half of the season. Now healthy, Olsen is likely to take the field against the Jets, although it remains unclear as to how much he’ll be used in his first game back. Vernon Davis is once again a top play this week with Jordan Reed nursing a hamstring injury, while Cameron Brate continues to fall down the rankings without Jameis Winston at quarterback. Brate’s connection with Ryan Fitzpatrick just isn’t as strong as his rapport was with Winston.

Defense/Special Teams

  1. Jacksonville - @ Ari
  2. Seattle - @ SF
  3. Baltimore - vs Hou
  4. Pittsburgh - vs GB
  5. Philadelphia - vs Chi
  6. Carolina - @ NYJ
  7. Cincinnati - vs Cle
  8. Los Angeles (Chargers) - @ Dal
  9. New England - vs Mia
  10. Atlanta - vs TB
  11. Houston - @ Bal
  12. Minnesota - @ Det
  13. Detroit - vs Min
  14. Washington - vs NYG
  15. Los Angeles (Rams) - vs NO
  16. Cleveland - @ Cin
  17. Denver - @ Oak
  18. Kansas City - vs Buf
  19. New Orleans - @ LAR
  20. Chicago - @ Phi

This year’s top defenses are some of the easiest plays of the week given their favorable matchups. Cincinnati’s defense has quietly put together a decent fantasy season and is a top streamer play against Cleveland’s mistake-prone offense. The Detroit Lions and Los Angeles Rams are two units to stay away from this week.

Kicker

  1. Greg Zuerlein - vs NO
  2. Stephen Gostkowski - vs Mia
  3. Will Lutz - @ LAR
  4. Ryan Succop - @ Ind
  5. Justin Tucker - vs Hou
  6. Jake Elliott - vs Chi
  7. Matt Prater - vs Min
  8. Chris Boswell - vs GB
  9. Matt Bryant - vs TB
  10. Harrison Butker - vs Buf
  11. Kai Forbath - @ Det
  12. Adam Vinatieri - vs Ten
  13. Stephen Hauschka - @ KC
  14. Brandon McManus - @ Oak
  15. Giorgio Tavecchio - vs Den
  16. Graham Gano - @ NYJ
  17. Chandler Catanzaro - vs Car
  18. Mason Crosby - @ Pit
  19. Blair Walsh - @ SF
  20. Robbie Gould - vs Sea

Jake Elliott’s status will be one to monitor through Sunday morning. He’s yet to be cleared from the concussion protocol, but head coach Doug Pederson has not ruled him out for this week’s contest against the Bears. Elliot has been a steady kicker for the high scoring Eagles’ offense since Caleb Sturgis went down, and will be a strong option if he’s healthy enough to play.