Terry Blount: Bills’ Tyrod Taylor could be valuable fantasy pick-up this week

Buffalo Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor reacts after teammate LeSean McCoy scored on a long touchdown run during the second half of an NFL football game against the Oakland Raiders, Sunday, Oct. 29, 2017, in Orchard Park, N.J. (October 2017 file photo/The Associated Press)

Welcome to Week 12. The playoffs are on the horizon.

 

There are three Thanksgiving games, so make sure to set your lineups early. Also, many leagues traditionally have their trade deadline this week, so act accordingly.

Many fantasy pundits around the league are still loudly questioning Buffalo coach Sean McDermott’s decision to bench starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor in favor of rookie fifth-rounder Nathan Peterman. Five first-half interceptions later, McDermott re-inserted Taylor and said Wednesday that Taylor will start Sunday in Kansas City.

Because of McDermott’s move, many fantasy owners released Taylor last week. Owners, particularly those in two-quarterback leagues, should grab him off the wire. He has a decent Week 12 matchup versus the Chiefs and has other favorable matchups on the horizon, with two games versus New England, Indianapolis and two tilts with Miami. He’ll never remind anyone of Tom Brady, but he is still a valuable, matchup-based fantasy quarterback. Grab him off waivers quickly and start him in double-quarterback leagues this week. Make sure to thank McDermott for making Taylor available.

After a slow start to the campaign, Tennessee wide receiver Rishard Mathews has posted double-figure fantasy points in two of his last three games. He has only had two games with fewer than six targets in 2017.

Matthews should post nice numbers in Week 12 versus an Indianapolis defense that has yielded 23.5 fantasy points per game to the wide receiver position. If that’s not enough, the Titans’ upcoming schedule features several receiver-friendly defenses, with Houston in Week 13, Arizona in Week 14 and San Francisco in Week 15. With these future matchups, Matthews could be a great guy to grab and stash for the playoffs. He won’t necessarily be an automatic start, but he should be on your radar as a WR3/flex every time you set your lineup.

Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers has usually been a dependable fantasy option, but this season his stat lines have been average at best. This week he might fare better in a Thanksgiving game versus Dallas. The Cowboys defense has been relatively cordial to opposing quarterbacks, allowing 18 touchdowns and only five interceptions. Based on the matchup, Rivers should be a dependable QB1 as you eat your turkey dinner.

Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen had his best game of the year last week, posting 12 receptions, 159 yards and two touchdowns on an impressive 13 targets in the Chargers’ 54-24 blowout win versus Buffalo. He’ll face Dallas in Week 12, a unit that has allowed 22.8 fantasy points per game to team wide receivers. Allen should be a suitable WR2 this time out.

After posting four consecutive games with double-figure fantasy points, Giants tight end Evan Engram had a setback in Week 11 versus Kansas City, posting a lone reception for nine yards. This week his matchup improves against a Washington defense allowing 11.2 fantasy points per game to tight ends. He should rebound from last week to be a solid TE1. He also has a chance at a good game versus Oakland next week.

The Detroit Lions’ run defense has been downright gracious this season versus fantasy running backs, allowing the fourth most points to the position. Detroit will face Minnesota this week and the Vikings’ running backs stand to benefit from the matchup. Now, all we must do is determine which Vikings back will be the guy to play against the Lions.

While Vikings running back Latavius Murray has been the lead back the past two games, backup Jerick McKinnon has posted nice numbers all season. While Murray has topped McKinnon 412-367 in rushing yards, McKinnon has been the better receiver of the two, outgaining Murray 230-39 and 46-8 in targets. Detroit has yielded 474 receiving yards on the season to running backs, marking a clear advantage for McKinnon. I like McKinnon as a solid RB2 option, while Murray could squeak out decent numbers as a flex.

Happy Thanksgiving!

TopTankTickets
 

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