It was the usual cast of characters atop the fantasy leaderboards at the running back position in Week 12. Leonard Fournette actually reached the end zone (twice!), Christian McCaffrey posted another 30+ DKFP day and Derrick Henry did his thing against the Jaguars. With those performances in the books, what can we expect out of this position in Week 13? I look at two mid-tier options to consider and how they can help you save some salary during your roster construction. Salaries via DraftKings.
Jonathan Williams ($5,300) vs. Titans
The new shiny toy in the Colts offense is here because of the injury to Marlon Mack, who is dealing with a fractured hand. To Williams’ credit, he’s helped ease the burden of the loss of Mack by playing very well over the last two weeks. After coming in against the Jaguars in Week 11 in which he rushed for 116 yards on 13 carries, Williams followed that up with 104 yards, a touchdown on 26 carries against the Texans in Week 12. So, in essentially a week and a half, Williams has logged 39 carries, 220 yards and a touchdown for a total of 42.8 DKFP. Not too shabby for someone who hardly took the field at any point during the season prior to the injury.
Williams will once again draw the start in Week 13 against a Titans defense that’s hovered around league-average against the run. After running with a bare minimum salary of $3,000 in Week 12, Williams takes a massive jump of $2,300 to $5,300 in Week 13. It’s hard to imagine that Williams can keep up this pace that he’s on since taking over the starters role but he continues to be gifted with good spots to do so. The Titans have faced some big time names over the past three weeks in Christian McCaffrey, Damien Williams and Leonard Fournette. They haven’t responded well, allowing an average of 110 rushing yards and 32 DKFP. While I can’t realistically say that Williams can keep on pace with those averages, he certainly has shown that in his limited appearances.
Phillip Lindsay ($5,000) vs. Chargers
Lindsay was named the “starter” for the Broncos after essentially splitting carries each and every week with Royce Freeman. Well, in his second week in the new role, Lindsay was a non-factor in the 20-3 loss to the Bills, scoring just 7.8 DKFP. He carried the ball 13 times, which was 11 times more than Freeman but only managed 57 yards. So sure, it’s nice being the “starter” but we need more than that when using him on a weekly basis.
Luckily for Lindsay, he has a great matchup in Week 13 against the Chargers, who have been one of the worst run defenses in the league. Opposing receivers are averaging 20.8 DKFP per week, 97 rushing and 45 receiving yards. While the Chargers have held opposing backs to an average of 60 rushing yards over the last three weeks, they have given up three rushing touchdowns in that same span. Lindsay sees a salary $5,000 and will likely be shunned by people who he burned last week. Again, if Lindsay is going to handle the lion share of the carries, he’s simply too cheap to ignore against a Chargers defense that has struggled all season long. Don’t be afraid to go back here, especially when you consider he has a $200 discount from where he was in Week 12.