Welcome to Week 13 Fantasy Overreactions! The day or two after the dust settles during the NFL season, meaning that we can take any occurrence from Sunday or Monday and make a completely wild narrative with it. We also want to make bold claims to remain ahead of the curve!
Every week, we’re going to identify five of these potential overreactions from the week’s NFL action. While these are just our opinions, feel free to use your own thoughts on each narrative. The storylines have been played out, now it’s our job to decide if we feel the story is fact or fiction.
The stories were aplenty this week: Tom Brady continues to dominate the Atlanta Falcons. The Detroit Lions removed themselves from going down in the record books and finally winning a game. The New England Patriots took over first place in the AFC. All that and more in an exciting Week 13!
All of this has led to some great overreactions. So as we will do each week, it’s now time to react to the potential overreactions!
1) You Should Bench Patrick Mahomes
I will start this out by prefacing it. It seems pretty crazy that this is even a narrative in the fantasy football landscape right now. The facts are that Mahomes has not been anything close to the quarterback we’ve grown accustomed to watching since he became the starter for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2018. Mahomes has thrown 12 interceptions this season. That’s more than 2019 and 2020 combined (11). Mahomes has also equally the 12 interceptions he threw in all of 2018 when he added 50 passing touchdowns to that. Now those interceptions are not all his fault. According to Pro Football Focus, five have come off dropped passes. That is the most for any quarterback this season. The last two games have also marked the first time in Mahomes’ career that he’s gone consecutive games without throwing a touchdown.
The Chiefs have won five games in a row, reclaimed sole possession of the AFC West, and now have a more than realistic shot of being the AFC’s top seed. Teams continue to use the two-high safety look against the Chiefs more than any other team this season to limit the big plays. Mahomes has continued to adjust and has still finished as a Top-12 quarterback in seven of the 12 games he’s played in this season. Mahomes may not be THE QB1 you drafted, but he was still ranked as the QB6 going into Week 13 and should still be in your starting lineup every week.
2) Tyler Lockett > D.K. Metcalf Rest of Season
Verdict: NOT AN OVERREACTION
I have been as anti-Tyler Lockett as I can remember over the last couple of seasons. It was very stressful rostering Lockett for the three weeks he busts compared to the one week that he booms and single-handily wins you your week. That was demonstrated with Lockett producing five top-20 weeks in 2020, with two of those the number one overall wide receiver. On the flip side, D.K. Metcalf finished as a top-20 wide receiver in half of the games he played last season. I always wanted the more consistent player.
Fast forward to 2021 and Metcalf has only four games as a top-20 wide receiver and Lockett has three. Not that either of those are great, but Lockett has ranked in the top 26 of wide receivers in two of the three weeks since Russell Wilson returned at QB entering Week 13, while Metcalf has finished anywhere from WR55-WR92. Lockett has been the one to trust of these two in this offense and I’m playing Lockett over Metcalf going forward until I see otherwise.
3) Antonio Gibson is a Top 12 Running Back Going Forward
Verdict: NOT AN OVERREACTION
Antonio Gibson has had 95 carries over the last four weeks. That’s more than Weeks 2-8 combined (91). That 23.75 attempts per game rank number one in the league over that time. Gibson’s targets over the last two weeks have been the most he’s had in a game all season and his 13 over that time period are more than the previous six weeks combined.
Antonio Gibson going into Week 13 had three straight weeks of finishing in the top 20 of running backs. Before this stretch, he had only done it three other times in eight games. With this type of volume going forward, Gibson is a fantastic play down the stretch as Washington will continue to ride him as they have been while winning four straight games.
4) Tua Tagovailoa is a Potential QB1
Verdict: NOT AN OVERREACTION
There’s no doubt that Tagovailoa has seemed to turn the corner recently. Tua has looked like a different quarterback the last four games and seemingly put an exclamation mark with his most recent outing of completing 30 of 41 passes for 244 yards and two touchdowns. In fact, over those last four games, Tagovailoa has posted a 100-plus passer rating in each of them, while accumulating six total touchdowns (five passing) and only one interception. He’s been a big reason why the Dolphins have won four games in a row and re-entered the playoff picture.
It seems that post-trade deadline, Tua has been able to focus on just playing football and not letting the distractions off the field affect his play. Tua has ranged anywhere from the QB10 – QB19 over the last three weeks but gets some really great matchups in his next three as he faces the Jets, Saints, and Titans after the bye. Tua could be great to roster down the stretch.
5) Amon-Ra St. Brown is the Lions #1 Pass Catcher
The Lions’ St. Brown had an awesome game in the Lions’ first win of the season on Sunday. St. Brown recorded 10 catches for 86 yards and a touchdown on 12 targets, while also recording one rush for two yards. Nearly half of St. Brown’s targets (5) and his receptions (4) came on that final drive of the game. Before that final drive, St. Brown had six catches for 49 yards on 7 targets. Not nearly what the final line indicated when the clock hit triple zeroes.
While St. Brown remains heavily involved in snaps (his 69 in Week 13 led all pass catchers), it’s still too much of a three-headed monster between him, Hockenson, and Reynolds on who will be the top receiver each week. Over the last two weeks, the number of pass routes between the three rank: St. Brown (71), Hockenson (62), Reynolds (61). Both Hockenson and Reynolds outscored St. Brown in Week 12. All three are the relevant pass-catching options in this offense, but one has not themselves apart over the others.