A look back at Week 12’s Surprise Performances. Highlighting key performances that could pay dividends as you set your lineups for Week 13.
Desean Jackson (Washington Redskins, WR): It looks like Jackson took a play out of Hip-Hop artist’s Drake’s playbook going “Back-to-Back”, “Back-to-Back” weeks of playing his old deep threat self. After suffering a hamstring injury Week 1, Desean Jackson aka “D-Jax” was sidelined for 8 weeks. Therefore, he’s been a stash play for the majority of the season, but it appears it was well worth the wait. Prior to Week 11’s matchup with the Panthers, Jackson indicated to reporters that he was 100% recovered from the hamstring injury he had suffered earlier in the season. Within the last two weeks, Jackson has resumed his play making abilities on the field. In his last two matchups, Jackson’s ability to stretch the field has appeared evident. When healthy, “D-Jax” is one of the premier deep threat specialists in the NFL. It is rare to find a player with the type of speed he has at his disposal. Over the past two games, Jackson has accumulated seven receptions for 152 yards and two touchdowns. Both of his scoring plays have come off of plays with yardage of forty or more. Therefore, moving forward as long as D-Jax is playing those types of plays he warrants at best as a flex play in most leagues.
Spencer Ware (Kansas City Chiefs, RB): Perhaps no team has been hit harder by the injury bug at the running back position than the Kansas City Chiefs. First arguably losing the best running back in Jamaal Charles. Fantasy owners were left scrambling to find a replacement, which enabled Charcandrick West to rise to the challenge. West arose to the challenge and had established himself as a viable fantasy option. During their matchup against the Chargers, the injury buy reared its menacing vengeance once again. Taking West out of the game with a hamstring injury leaving a void in the Chiefs backfield once again. Enter, Spencer Ware, the Chiefs third different staring running back of the season. Against a stout Bills defense, Ware emerged and made the most out of this opportunity. He finished the day with 19 carries for 114 yards and a touchdown. In football, depth is one of the most vital components of the game. That bodes evident for both reality and in the realm of fantasy. The Chiefs have bred three different 100 yards rushers in the same season, an accolade that is hard to accomplish. The Chiefs have epitomized the importance of depth at the running back position. Moving forward, if West were to miss another game, Ware is a viable RB2 candidate.
CJ Anderson (Denver Broncos, RB): Welcome back, Mr. Anderson! Entering the 2015 fantasy season, Anderson was viewed as a top 10 player at the running back position. Finishing the 2014 season on a high note led to the expectation that he would pick up where he left off. Drafted to be an RB1 for fantasy owners, Anderson started off the season slow. In the ensuing weeks, Anderson’s performances became worse and worse, failing to score a touchdown in the first six weeks of the season. The explosiveness we had seen the previous season was non-existent. Owners could point to the play of the offense line, Manning’s struggles, or play calling, but at the end of the day Anderson was simply not getting it done. Following the bye week, Anderson seemed to be returning to fighting form and looking like his old power back self. Each game under his belt and a change at the quarterback position has paid dividends for Anderson. Going up against the Patriots in harsh, wintery conditions appeared to play to Anderson’s strengths. He exploded back onto the scene with 15 carries for 113 yards and two touchdowns. This kind of performance is what owners have been waiting for all season. For those who have kept Anderson stashed on their bench or picked him off the waiver wire, kudos to you. Moving forward, with the running game intact in Denver, Anderson’s return to fantasy relevance makes him a viable flex play option.
Source: ESPN Fantasy Football Now