For fantasy owners reading this, Week 13 is likely a must-win week. For those that are out of the playoffs or have already clinched, you're resting comfortably. However, for those that need to win to get in, you want to make sure you are starting the best lineup possible. No teams are on a bye, but with three games on Thursday, fantasy owners may feel anxious heading into Sunday if the score of their fantasy game is lopsided. Try to find the best players and the best matchups to get that victory.
START These Running Backs
Ronald Jones, Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Jacksonville Jaguars
In the past three games, the Jaguars have allowed four running backs to rush for more than 100 yards and five touchdowns. Jones has three touchdowns in the past four games and has proven to be the No. 1 running back for the Bucs. While the Bucs don't always get an opportunity to run the ball a lot if they are trailing, the game against Jacksonville should remain close enough that Jones will get an opportunity to run. He's an RB2 this week.
Josh Jacobs, Oakland Raiders at Kansas City Chiefs
With a great matchup, Jacobs should be the focal point of this offense. Derek Carr has struggled, Hunter Renfrow is out so this should be a Jacobs game. The Chiefs allow the second-most fantasy points to running backs, and as long as the Raiders' defense can keep the team in the game (unlike what happened in Week 12 and Jacobs left in the third quarter of a blowout), this should be a good opportunity for Jacobs to redeem himself from his 34 rushing yards in Week 12. He's an RB2.
START These Wide Receivers
Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers at New York Giants
Without the touchdown in Week 12, Adams would have 43 yards. In PPR leagues, this wasn't terrible as he had seven receptions, but this is not what fantasy owners had in mind when they drafted him in the first round. Since his return from his toe injury, Adams has had two games with less than 50 yards and one game with more than 100. This week should continue the pattern of following a poor game with a good one. The Giants allow the second-most fantasy points to wide receivers and the Packers need a win. Aaron Rodgers knows that Adams is his best weapon and he'll be looking for him. Treat Adams like the WR1 he was drafted as this week.
DJ Chark Jr., Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Bucs' secondary is awful, and Chark, as well as Dede Westbrook, should be able to take advantage of it. Nick Foles has found Chark in the end zone for either a touchdown or two-point conversion in all of the games the pair has played together. He did target Westbrook nine times in Week 12 but both receivers should have a good game and both should be WR2s. Chark gets a slightly higher bump because of his big-play ability.
SIT These Running Backs
Arizona Cardinals running backs vs. Los Angeles Rams
It's hard to pick just one for this column. In reality, all three Arizona running backs (David Johnson, Kenyan Drake, Chase Edmonds) should all be left on the bench. This backfield is too crowded and none have done anything to stand out from the mix. Drake is likely the best option, but with Johnson and Edmonds in the mix, his role is likely going to be reduced. The Cardinals face the Rams in Week 13, which isn't a bad matchup, but it's enough to only start an Arizona running back if you're desperate.
Chris Carson, Seattle Seahawks vs. Minnesota Vikings (Mon.)
Carson has fumbled the ball in the past three consecutive games, and in Week 12, Rashaad Penny made the most of increased opportunities. The Seahawks have said they want to get Penny more involved, and that doesn't bode well for Carson. The Seahawks also play the Vikings on Monday night, which is a tough matchup. Carson had eight carries for 26 yards in Week 12. He still may have a role in the passing game, but sharing carries with Penny is going to hurt his value. Carson is a low RB2 this week but may end up in the flex territory.
SIT These Wide Receivers
DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans vs. New England Patriots
The Texans face the Patriots, who have shut down opposing wide receivers. The Patriots' defensive strategy is usually to take out the best player on the opposing team. While it might be Deshaun Watson, it also is Hopkins. All of the Texans' pass catchers take a hit, but the biggest drop in rankings goes to Hopkins. He has put together a nice season, although the touchdowns are lower than they have in the past. Hopkins has been a solid WR1, but for this week, he's a WR2.
Deebo Samuel, San Francisco 49ers at Baltimore Ravens
In what may be a preview of the Super Bowl, the 49ers face the Baltimore Ravens in Week 13. The Ravens have a good defense and this should be a good football game. However, good games do not necessarily translate into fantasy points. Samuel was limited in practice on Wednesday with a shoulder injury, and this will be something to monitor, but it seems that he will play. This matchup is something to be aware of and Samuel, who has at either a touchdown or 100 yards in the past three games, is a WR3 this week.
— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.