Good morning, Fools. It's the last week of the regular season for most of us, and playoff berths and/or seeding on the line.
I have the 2nd and 3rd seeds right now in my two leagues, with a first-round bye at stake in both. It's gonna be tense around the Chief Fool's house today...
Let's take a spin around the league for the news we can use to dominate in Week 13...
Big Ben has cleared the concussion protocol and will play today. He'll also have Martavis Bryant, who was something of a concern during the week due to a hip problem. I'm expecting a big game from Roethlisberger tonight, and Bryant should play an important role in that, along with (obviously) the great Antonio. He'll probably be without trusty TE Heath Miller, though.
With both Chris Johnson and Andre Ellington already ruled out, David Johnson will be the workhorse in Arizona's backfield. I like the fact that he's a good receiver out of the backfield as well as a goal-line threat. HC Bruce Arians said he's in line for 25 touches against the Rams. That's a lot of confidence placed on a rookie in his first start.
Things are not as clear cut in the Chicago, Atlanta and Kansas City backfields, where injured starters are returning to a potential committee scenario. Matt Forte and Jeremy Langford had a near-even split last week, and are expected to do so again. I sat them both in Week 12 but plan to roll with Forte today, simply due to the great home matchup with the sorry 49ers. He also has something to prove, as he heads into an offseason as a free agent looking for a big contract. Frankly, both are good starting options and either could break a big one today.
Devonta Freeman should be a safe play despite surrendering some carries to Tevin Coleman, who was solid last week in relief, but fumbled (again). And Charcandrick West returns from his concussion after watching Spencer Ware perform very well in his absence. West is the safer play of the two.
And what do we make of the C.J. Anderson/Ronnie Hillman conundrum? Fortunately, I don't own either. But if I had to make a choice, I'd roll with Anderson this week.
Danny Amendola is expected to return today, which makes Brandon LaFell a more unappetizing start, given how disappointing he's been in recent weeks.
Despite earlier reports that Michael Floyd (hamstring) would not play today, he is active. I'm not taking any chances and will be sitting him, but his presence makes starting John Brown a little dicier.
I snagged DeVante Parker off waivers in one of my leagues as a potential late-season stud, with Rishard Matthews out due to broken ribs. I made him my "flier" in Friday's column, but that doesn't mean I'd start him over more-established options; especially now that Kenny Stills is active despite an ankle issue. Parker will be riding my bench, but I won't be surprised if he has another nice outing against the soft Ravens secondary. There's plenty of upside there, but he's a rookie WR in his first start. Getting cute and starting him could easily backfire.
We'll finally get another look at Austin Seferian-Jenkins today, though he'll play against a tough Falcons pass defense.
Tyler Eifert will not play today due to his neck injury. Should mean more red zone looks for AJ Green and Marvin Jones.
Also ruled out: Peyton Manning, Andrew Luck, Ryan Mathews, Carlos Hyde, Karlos Williams, Allen Hurns, Julian Edelman, Leonard Hankerson, Marquess Wilson, Andrew Hawkins, Taylor Gabriel, Rob Gronkowski, Larry Donnell, Matt Bryant and Greg Zuerlein.
Inactives coming up next via Twitter. Good luck today, Fools.