Fantasy Football 2019: Players You Can Drop Before Week 13

Here is a list of players you can safely cut ties with ahead of Week 13.
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I can’t believe it, but Week 13 is finally upon us. In all high stakes leagues, like those offered at the SI Fantasy Football World Championships, this is the last week to make any roster moves. The players you decide to roster are the ones who will either carry you to victory or crush your dreams over Weeks 14-16. Choose wisely and best of luck to every fantasy owner out there who is beginning the journey towards fantasy glory (and the big pay day that comes with it).

Get ready fantasy owners, as there are some big names to drop with the fantasy playoffs just one week away. It is now time for fantasy owners to drop certain underperforming or injured fantasy stars as well as players who have seen their roles change drastically. With twelve weeks of data, fantasy owners have a large enough sample size to make informed decisions about which rostered players should be worthy of your trust.

The difference between winning a championship or not could be as small as a decision to drop a player that you thought was a sleeper, but turned out to be a bust. It’s been proven that the most dominant fantasy owners understand the importance of foresight. Sometimes, you simply have to move on, just as NFL teams move on from players throughout the season.

However, at the same time, don’t hold onto a player just because you are afraid to let go. Of course, fantasy owners also have to manage injuries and drop players who may not return in time to contribute to your postseason run. So without further ado, here are some players fantasy owners should not hesitate to drop after twelve weeks of NFL action.

Running Backs

RB Brian Hill, Atlanta Falcons

Hill, owned in 84% of leagues, was the target of every fantasy owner a few weeks back after starting Falcons RB Devonta Freeman went down with a foot injury. However, the promising third-year player has been a huge bust since taking over lead duties in the Atlanta backfield. Hill has proven to be incapable of offering fantasy value with only 65 total yards combined on 28 touches with no touchdowns over his last two games. Hill should no longer be rostered with a brutal matchup on Thanksgiving night against New Orleans, followed by tough meetings with Carolina in Week 14 and at San Francisco in Week 15.

Wide Receivers

WR Kenny Stills, Houston Texans

The veteran, owned in 59% of leagues, offers virtually no upside with the return of fellow wideout Will Fuller to the Houston lineup. Stills, who saw 94% of the snaps while Fuller was out over the previous four games, was only on the field for 63% of the plays in Week 12 against the Colts. In conjunction, his production fell off the cliff with only one reception of six yards. It is obvious that he is a distant third on the Texans route tree behind both DeAndre Hopkins and Fuller. Stills has a brutal matchup with the Patriots in Week 13 followed by the Broncos in Week 14 making it difficult to roster a player who has posted 27 or fewer receiving yards in three of his last four games.

WR Josh Gordon, Seattle Seahawks

The love affair between fantasy owners and the underachieving wide receiver is well documented by his 74% ownership in leagues. However, since joining Seattle following his dismissal from New England, the veteran has failed to make any impact running routes for Russell Wilson. In two games as a Seahawk, he has produced a meager three receptions for 37 yards with no touchdowns. With upcoming games against the Vikings in Week 13, Rams in Week 14 and Carolina in Week 15, it’s hard to see any matchup where he can be afforded the opportunity to make the impact needed to be worthy of a roster spot in the fantasy postseason.

As previously mentioned….

WR JuJu Smith-Schuster, Pittsburgh Steelers

This was easily the biggest name in Week 11 and a player I know fantasy owners did not want to see make this list. Smith-Schuster, who missed Week 12 while in the NFL’s concussion protocol, is easily among the biggest busts in fantasy football this year. The star wide receiver, owned in 96% of leagues, has less than 44 receiving yards in four of his last five games. Even if he is able to get back on the field for the fantasy playoffs do you really want to trust a player who has only produced 81 yards receiving and no touchdowns over his last three games? The Steelers offense as a whole is one my model says to avoid down the stretch with an unsettled quarterback situation, injuries to RB James Conner and the suspension of Pro Bowl OL Maurkice Pouncey.

QB Tom Brady, New England Patriots

We recommended last week dropping the Hall of Fame quarterback that is owned in 99% of leagues and is piloting a team that is tied for the best record (10-1) in the NFL. Brady, who was started in 65% of leagues in Week 12 against the Cowboys,

had another abysmal fantasy performance throwing for a season-low 190 yards. The six-time Super Bowl Champion has been a fantasy bust in his 20th season throwing one or fewer touchdown passes in five of his last six games. Brady does have some plus-matchups over the next few weeks, but the Patriots offense just isn’t playing at a level where fantasy owners should be trusting arguably the best signal-caller to ever play the game when your fantasy life is on the line.

WR Antonio Brown, Free Agent

So let me get this straight, Brown apologizing to the Patriots on social media was enough for more fantasy owners to blow valuable roster spots by adding him this past week? Brown’s ownership actually climbed this past week to 39% of leagues? Really? No organization wants the drama and the circus he would bring into the locker room. Give it up already.

RB Marlon Mack, Indianapolis Colts

Mack, owned in 98% of leagues, has been lost indefinitely after undergoing hand surgery. Fantasy football’s overall RB15 needs to be dropped and possibly replaced with backfield teammate Jonathan Williams who has rushed for 100-plus yards in back-to-back weeks since Mack went down.

WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Green Bay Packers

The second-year wideout out of South Florida was a recommended cut back in the Week 11 edition of this feature. Despite 20-plus PPR fantasy point performances in Week 3 against Denver and Week 7 versus Oakland, Valdes-Scantling has been a big disappointment. Over the last four games, the wideout still owned in over 49% of leagues, has just two receptions for eleven yards. Despite playing in a prolific offense with favorable matchups against the Giants in Week 13 and Washington in Week 14, MVS is not a player fantasy owners should continue to roster.

More Advice From SI Fantasy

—Our early rankings give the Top 10 at every position for Week 13

—Jaime Eisner’s waiver wire pickups: Ryan Tannehill, Rashaad Penny and more

—Bill Enright’s injury report takes a look at who is out how long

—Frankie Taddeo’s Week 12 Superlatives dish out awards for last week