Top 10 sleepers for Week 13
In case top fantasy starters like Kurt Warner, Michael Turner and DeSean Jackson are unable to play, some owners may need contingency plans to keep their playoff hopes alive.
Check out these top 10 sleepers for emerging players and overlooked veterans who can serve as emergency fantasy starters.
10. Carolina D/ST
Tampa Bay ranks among the bottom 10 in allowing turnovers (21), while Carolina ranks in the top 11 for creating turnovers (20). Tampa Bay also ranks as the NFL’s fifth-worst scoring offense (16.5). In the Week 6 meeting with the Buccaneers, Carolina had four sacks, and forced two turnovers.
9. Michael Crabtree, WR, San Francisco
Seattle ranks in the bottom quarter for pass defenses (238) and has allowed the league’s fifth-most passing scores (20).
It has permitted big games to No. 1 wide receivers recently, including Sidney Rice’s six catches for 89 yards and two scores in Week 11, Larry Fitzgerald’s seven catches for 73 yards and a score in Week 10, and Miles Austin’s five catches for 61 yards and a score in Week 8. Of note, St. Louis’ No. 1 receiver Donnie Avery had four catches for 48 yards and a score last game.
Crabtree has been consistent recently, catching four passes in each of the last three contests. He posted his best fantasy game as a pro at Green Bay in Week 11, recording 77 yards and a score. He’ll be aiming to score his second career touchdown when he travels to Seattle. Crabtree has posted his best fantasy results on the road as a rookie. He’s registered five catches for 56 yards at Houston in Week 7, and six catches for 81 yards at Indianapolis in Week 8.
8. Matt Prater, K, Denver
Kansas City has allowed the league’s fourth-most field-goal attempts (25) this season. Prater has attempted the NFL’s sixth-most field goals (23), including four last game. He converted kicks of 23, 32, 47 and 24 yards, along with two extra points.
7. Kyle Orton, QB, Denver
Kansas City has yielded the NFL’s third-most passing yards (258.4) and ranks in the bottom 10 for allowing passing scores (19). It permitted Philip Rivers to pass for 317 yards and two scores last game.
Orton threw for 193 yards and two scores for Denver’s last road game against Washington in Week 10. He’ll be aiming for his fifth contest of multiple passing scores when the Broncos travel to Kansas City.
6. Jonathan Stewart, RB, Carolina
Tampa Bay ranks as the NFL’s third-worst run defense (160) and ranks in the bottom 10 for allowing rushing scores (12).
In the first meeting (Week 6), Stewart ran for 110 yards and one score. He averaged 6.5 yards from 17 carries.
5. Visanthe Shiancoe, TE, Minnesota
Arizona ranks as the league’s fourth-worst pass defense (258) and ranks in the bottom half for allowing passing scores (16).
It has permitted big fantasy games this season, including Marcedes Lewis (three catches for 62 yards and a score) in Week 2, Dallas Clark (seven catches for 62 yards and a score) in Week 3, Owen Daniels (eight catches for 94 yards) in Week 5, Greg Olsen (five catches for 71 yards and three scores) in Week 9 and John Carlson (31 yards and a score) in Week 10.
Shiancoe has scored eight touchdowns this season, including one in each of the last two contests and three of the last four games. He also posted season-highs of eight catches and 78 yards with a touchdown recently against Seattle in Week 10.
4. Kevin Walter, WR, Houston
He recorded his season’s best fantasy game when he caught seven passes for 96 yards and one score in Houston’s Week 2 meeting against Jacksonville.
The Jaguars rank as the league’s seventh-worst pass defense (242.9) and rate in the bottom 10 for allowing passing scores (19).
3. Jeremy Maclin, WR, Philadelphia
DeSean Jackson is expected to miss Sunday’s game with a concussion. This leaves Maclin as Philadelphia’s likely No. 1 wideout with Jason Avant and Reggie Brown playing secondary roles. Maclin recorded his best pro game when he caught six passes for 142 yards and two scores against Tampa Bay in Week 5.
Atlanta’s pass defense has struggled this season, allowing the sixth-most yards (252) and ranking in the bottom 10 for touchdowns (18).
2. Carson Palmer, QB, Cincinnati
Detroit has allowed the NFL’s most passing yards (281) and touchdowns (27) this season. It’s permitted a quarterback to throw for at least 300 yards in each of the past four games. In fact, Brady Quinn threw for 304 yards and four scores in Week 11, and Aaron Rodgers passed for 348 yards and three scores last contest.
Palmer has also demonstrated that he can produce a big fantasy day this season. He threw for 233 yards and five touchdowns against Chicago in Week 7.
1. LeSean McCoy, RB, Philadelphia
Brian Westbrook is expected to miss his third straight game with a concussion. McCoy has replaced Westbrook for five of Philadelphia’s games. He compiled these total yards in those games: 93 yards and a score in Week 3, 92 yards and a score in Week 8, 115 yards in Week 9, 99 yards in Week 11 and 101 yards last game.
Atlanta ranks as the league’s 10th-worst run defense (121). It recently allowed DeAngelo Williams to total 122 yards, and Stewart to rush for 82 yards and two scores in Week 10.