benny-snell-2-1400.jpg

Waivers are set to run tonight for most leagues, so before we get to anything else today, here are Jamey Eisenberg's top targets on the waiver wire for each position for Week 13

QB: Ryan Fitzpatrick (37%), Mitchell Trubisky (10%), Baker Mayfield (45%)
RB: Devontae Booker (34%), Benny Snell (48%), Cam Akers (47%)
WR: Deebo Samuel (59%), Tim Patrick (52%), Keke Coutee (0%)
TE: Kyle Rudolph (22%), Austin Hooper (62%), Logan Thomas (45%)

For the rest of Jamey's top adds, head here for more. And if you can still make trades in your league, Dave Richard's trade values chart can help you find the right deal. Plus, don't miss Heath Cummings' preview for quarterback, running back, wide receiver, and tight end for Week 13 here.

For the rest of today's Fantasy Football Today Newsletter -- subscribe here to get it in your inbox every morning! -- I've got the latest news from around the NFL you need to know about plus some of your biggest questions for Week 13 and beyond. There's a lot to keep up with around the NFL right now, so let's get going. And, as always, hit me up at Chris.Towers@CBSInteractive.com with the subject line "#AskFFT" with your toughest questions for tomorrow's newsletter.

More Week 13 help: Start 'Em & Sit 'Em: RBTrade Values Chart | FFT Newsletter | RB Preview | QB Preview | WR Preview | TE Preview | Waiver Wire | Panic About Struggling Stars? | Winners and Losers | Believe It Or Not   

Injuries, News and Notes

  • Ravens-Steelers is set to kick off at 3:40 p.m. -- The Ravens did have a couple of positive tests come up Tuesday, one with a player and one with a coach, but apparently both had previously been isolated as high-risk contacts, so there seems to be confidence that the Ravens have the spread of the virus under control. That's the key factor here -- not how many players the Ravens are missing or whether they were able to get a practice in, but whether the NFL believes they can travel and play without risking further spread. It's impossible to eliminate all risk, but there seems to be confidence this game is going to be played as scheduled this afternoon. Mark Ingram and J.K. Dobbins are eligible to be activated from the Reserve/COVID-19 list but won't be active, according to reports. Lamar Jackson, Willie Snead, and Mark Andrews are all out as well, along with several defenders and offensive linemen. The Steelers are also playing without James Conner, so Benny Snell and Gus Edwards will lead their respective backfields. Given the Ravens absences, the 10-0 Steelers shouldn't have much trouble with this one, which could lead to a conservative game plan featuring more of Snell and Anthony McFarland and less of Ben Roethlisberger, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Diontae Johnson, and Chase Claypool. Of course, given the unusual nature of this game, it's hard to say exactly what to expect -- the Steelers could decide to pass all over them and the shorthanded Ravens may not have much they can do about it. 
  • Dalvin Cook is "just kind of beat up" -- He left Sunday's game with an ankle injury, but was able to play through it and it isn't considered serious. However, it's worth wondering if the Vikings usage of Cook is sustainable; he's averaging nearly 30 touches per game since returning from a groin injury five games ago. Cook is expected to be good to go for Week 13 against the Jaguars, and he'll remain a must-start option, but it's not what you want to hear. If Alexander Mattison is out there, consider adding him as a high-upside stash for the playoffs. 
  • The Texans are "hopeful" David Johnson (concussion) will be able to return in Week 13 -- It couldn't come soon enough -- literally, he could not have been activated from IR any earlier than this, though the Texans could also surely use him. With Will Fuller suspended, Randall Cobb on IR, and Kenny Stills released, the Texans suddenly find themselves short on pass catchers. If Johnson is back in Week 13 against the Colts, he should return to being the No. 1 back, and the potential for a larger role in the passing game makes him a viable No. 2 option if healthy. 
  • George Kittle (foot) thinks he can return this season -- Kittle has always been more optimistic than the official timetable, telling reporters Tuesday he believes he can return a few weeks earlier than the eight-week timetable. He's made progress in recent days, and it at least sounds possible he could be back for Week 15 against the Cowboys or Week 16 against the Cardinals. It makes hanging on to him a little easier to stomach. 
  • Brandon Aiyuk will be activated from the Reserve/COVID-19 list -- That comes after Deebo Samuel made his successful return from a hamstring injury, and would give the 49ers their top two wide receivers for Week 13. Aiyuk should return to significant role and figures to be the primary option in the intermediate and downfield passing game, while Samuel continues to operate as an extension of the running game as much as anything. 
  • Drew Lock will return for Week 13 -- Lock and the rest of the Broncos quarterbacks were high-risk close contacts last week, but all tested negative Monday and will be back. That should help the likes of Jerry Jeudy, Noah Fant, and Tim Patrick, though none of them are must-start options against the Chiefs
  • Tua Tagovailoa (thumb) could play this week -- It isn't a sure thing yet, but the Dolphins seem to believe there's a chance Tagovailoa will be back in Week 13 against the Bengals. That would be a great place for him to make his return, though I would selfishly prefer to have Ryan Fitzpatrick available as a streamer this week. I had to start Andy Dalton in 14-team league last week, so sue me. 

Biggest Questions for Week 13 

We'll start the Week 13 questions by focusing, yet again, on Alvin Kamara. Kamara, who has been the No. 1 RB most of the season has 99 rushing yards and one touchdown, with one catch for -2 yards on three targets in two games with Taysom Hill at QB. Kamara has played a season-low in snap share in each game, and Fantasy payers are starting to panic. So, we'll start with two Kamara questions: 

  • Paulius: How would you rank Austin Ekeler, Nick Chubb, and Kamara rest of season? Do I do the unthinkable and drop Kamara? 

I don't know if you're in a six-team league, or something, but unburden yourself from the thought of dropping Kamara. That's not on the table, because Drew Brees will be back and the Saints offense should go back to operating much as it had before. And, it's worth noting that Kamara's struggles aren't necessarily all tied to Hill's move to the starting job. The Saints have been involved in two absolute blowouts so far, and you just can't learn much about a team by how they play in a blowout. 

Perhaps just as importantly, the last two games coincided with a flareup of Kamara's lingering foot issue, as FFT reader Steve reminded me Tuesday. He's been limited in practice over the last two weeks, and with the blowout  nature of both games, his limited usage -- and the corresponding increase in Latavius Murray's usage -- could just be the Saints playing it safe. We'll hopefully get a real look in Week 13, if the Falcons can at least keep this one close. 

That being said ... yeah, I would rank Ekeler over Kamara right now, and potentially for the rest of the season. If Brees returns from IR in Week 14, the first week he is eligible, that would change things. It's closer with Chubb, given his basically nonexistent role in the passing game, but I would be fine starting him over Kamara in Week 13. Kamara is more like a mid-range RB2 for me right now, with the biggest concern being the lack of usage in the passing game with Hill. 

And this is the kind of situation where it becomes more interesting. Mostert returned to the lineup in Week 12 and played 40% of the snaps, rushing 16 times for 43 yards and a touchdown, while catching both of his targets. I think you should expect the usage for both to be about the same, perhaps even with an edge to Mostert, and it seems reasonable to have pretty comparable expectations for them in the running game. It comes down to whether the Saints get him more involved in the passing game, and I have to think they will to at least some extent. Is he likely to get double-digit targets like he did three times in the seven games before Brees' injury? Almost certainly not! But Mostert isn't a slam dunk either, so I would probably still side with Kamara and the upside here. 

  • @podchamp_69: How would you rank the rookie running backs for the playoffs? 

Let's put them in tiers, because simple sequential rankings don't capture the picture very well.

  • Tier 1: The Must-Starts -- James RobinsonD'Andre Swift, Antonio Gibson -- Swift is less of a sure thing than Gibson, but he had 29 carries and eight catches in his last two games before his concussion, including his first start in Week 10. Both guys seem to have healthy roles locked in. Robinson is obviously the star of this rookie class. 
  • Tier 2: The Probably-Start -- Clyde Edwards-Helaire -- Edwards-Helaire has a role locked in, but that role has led to just 25 carries and two catches over the last two games. He hasn't played more than 59% of the snaps or had more than 14 carries in a game since Week 6. He's a fine low-end RB2, but the upside we were hoping for never materialized, and may never as long as Le'Veon Bell is around. 
  • Tier 3: The Hopeful Starts -- Jonathan Taylor, J.K. Dobbins -- Either of these guys could be in Tier 1 by next week, we just don't have certainty about their roles. Dobbins finally seemed to have claimed the majority of the work in the Ravens last game, but we haven't seen them play since. Taylor similarly showed out in Week 11, but his situation seems similarly fraught -- the Colts have refused to settle on any one back, and Taylor could be one bad first quarter away from being frozen out again.
  • Tier 4: The Lotto Ticket -- Cam Akers -- Akers is basically in the same spot Taylor and Dobbins are, just with even more uncertainty. He's seen an uptick in usage lately, but he's still very much in a three-way split backfield, and he isn't the snap leader yet either. There's huge upside here, but you should be treating him like a high-end handcuff -- Alexander Mattison, Le'Veon Bell, Tony Pollard, Jamaal Williams, Leonard Fournette, Latavius Murray, etc. If he gets the chance through injury or otherwise, he could be a must-start guy. 
  • Tier 5: The Depth Guys: Joshua Kelley, Zack Moss -- You can't say they haven't gotten the opportunity, they just haven't done enough with it to be much more than a flex option for Fantasy unless something happens to the other guys on the depth chart. 
  • @ethanrothstein: If I have Fuller, should I roll the dice with Keke Coutee or pick up an Allen Lazard type waiver guy for the stretch run?

I don't want to go all Regina George -- "Stop trying to make [Keke Coutee] happen. It's not going to happen." -- but it's hard to be too optimistic. He's played at least 60% of the snaps in eight career games and he has 37 catches on 55 targets for 395 yards and one touchdown. He has a legitimate opportunity here, but he's also a former fourth-rounder with two and a half uninspiring years under his belt. I would rather have Lazard, but I would also rather have Tim Patrick, Jalen Reagor, Breshad Perriman, Denzel Mims, or Gabriel Davis, all of whom are rostered in 52% or fewer of CBS Fantasy leagues. 

Hill and Diggs are obvious must-start players, so it comes down to Lockett or Jefferson. Lockett ranks eighth in Fantasy scoring per game while Jefferson is 15th, so it seems like an easy call, but that overstates the gap between the two of them, which is just 1.7 points per game. It also undersells just how good Jefferson has been, with a per-16-game pace of 84 catches, 1,508 yards, and 11 touchdowns since breaking into the starting lineup. There's a lot about that that is unsustainable -- most notably the 12.9 yards per target -- but he's also managed to be more consistent than Lockett, topping 60 yards in seven of nine games as a starter, compared to six of 11 for Lockett. The Seahawks aren't throwing as much as they did early in the season, so I think it all adds up to Jefferson being the better option, all other things being equal. 

Greg: Who are the three best Week 13 streamers at QB?

It's not a great week for streamers, especially if Ryan Fitzpatrick (37% rostered vs. CIN) doesn't start for the Dolphins. Your best bets are probably Philip Rivers (54% @HOU) or Baker Mayfield (45% @TEN), unless Kirk Cousins is available in your league. Tagovailoa would also be a fine option against the Bengals if he gets that shot. 

  • Richard: Who are some streamable playoff tight ends based on usage and matchups?

I don't think matchups matter all that much for tight end. A good matchup isn't going to get the Patriots to throw it to Ryan Izzo more, you know? The truth is, the position is a disaster right now, and there isn't a single player likely on waivers right now who is worth stashing just for a matchup. However, looking at the schedule Dalton Schultz gets the Bengals in Week 14, Tyler Higbee has the Jets and Eric Ebron has the Bengals in Week 15. Maybe you'll get lucky, but I'd rather see if Logan Thomas or Jordan Akins can close the season out strong. Both have the potential to do so. 

And a couple of keeper questions … 

  • @Spoodler69: #AskFFT which player holds the most keeper value for next season: A.J. Brown, Chris Godwin, Jonathan Taylor?

I have a lot of questions about how effective the Buccaneers offense can be in 2021 with a 44-year-old Tom Brady, and even more questions about what it would look like without a 44-year-old Tom Brady, so that knocks Godwin down a peg for me. Taylor could absolutely be the league-winning breakout RB next season -- he's an incredible athlete who could have a more secure role in Year Two. But that's no guarantee yet. What is guaranteed is that A.J. Brown is one of the most talented wide receivers in football with a ton of continuity in his offense heading into 2021. He might be a second-round pick next season. 

  • Dave: Who do you like more for this season and next: Jerry Jeudy or Brandon Aiyuk?

Jeudy seems like the better pure talent, though Aiyuk was a first-round pick himself, so there's no doubting his skills either. So, what is more valuable: A role as probably No. 2 WR for Drew Lock or the 2b for Jimmy Garoppolo? Kittle will be the focal point and Aiyuk will have to compete with Deebo Samuel for targets, but both have been used so differently this season that I'm not sure they are really in competition. I think Jeudy gets the edge for now, but if Aiyuk gets healthy and closes the season strong, he's close enough to easily flip it his direction.