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Players to Drop in Fantasy Football After Week 12

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The fantasy playoffs are on the horizon, and it’s time to start setting up your roster for a championship run or overhaul your bench to make that last push for a playoff spot. Week 12 provided a reprieve from bye weeks, but they will be back again in both Weeks 13 and 14.

This article will be published bi-weekly throughout the 2022 season. As always, recommendations in this article should be looked at through the lens of the fantasy manager’s starting lineup requirements, scoring settings and roster size.

 

Leagues with deeper benches may want to hold onto some players listed in this article since those leagues won’t have the waiver wire depth of others.

Quarterback

Russell Wilson, Denver Broncos

Whether it’s a scheme problem or an ability problem, the Broncos offense is an absolute mess. Denver has scored over 20 points just twice this season, which means that Russell Wilson has not been cooking.

Russell Wilson QB Denver Broncos

Wilson has just two games with more than 17 fantasy points this season and none since Week 4. Wilson has nine games with one or fewer touchdown passes this season and has exceeded 275 passing yards just twice. He came into Week 11 as QB22, averaging 14.56 fantasy points per game. That will go down after an 8.48-point performance against the Panthers in a surprising Week 12 loss.

Matthew Stafford, Los Angeles Rams

Fantasy managers weren’t surprised to find out that Matthew Stafford would be missing Week 12 after he entered the concussion protocol for a second time in a week (and suffered a strained neck) during Week 11’s game. They were likely surprised when rumors surfaced on Sunday that Stafford may not suit up again this season.

Stafford had some numbness in his legs after Week 11’s game against the Saints. With the Rams sitting at 3-8 after a loss to the Chiefs in Week 12, the team has little incentive to rush the quarterback back under center. The Rams have a porous offensive line and are missing several offensive weapons, so they may just decide to rest their veterans and extend their championship window one more year with a healthy roster in 2023.

Regardless, Stafford is droppable in fantasy this season.

Running Back

Chase Edmonds, Denver Broncos

Chase Edmonds has been one of the colossal disappointments of the 2022 fantasy season. Edmonds was traded off the explosive Miami offense to a sputtering Denver offense and then promptly suffered a high-ankle sprain in Week 11.

Edmonds will need at least four weeks to ramp back up and will likely not be the same once he returns. He’s safely droppable for someone who can provide fantasy production down the stretch.

AJ Dillon, Green Bay Packers

Coming into the season, many expected the Packers offense to rely on a two-headed backfield to propel the offense, leaving both Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon with a massive fantasy ceiling. However, the Packers offense (especially along the offensive line) has struggled, which has led to a disappointing fantasy season for Dillon.

Dillon has surpassed 60 rushing yards just four times this season, including just twice since Week 5. During that eight-game stretch, the veteran running back has not had a single game with more than 15 touches on offense. He is averaging just 4.0 yards per carry this season and has found the end zone just twice.

Fantasy managers likely spent a premium mid-round pick on Dillon during their fantasy drafts. At this point, it is time to cut bait for a player who is getting a more consistent workload on offense to make that last push into the fantasy playoffs.

Nyheim Hines, Buffalo Bills

There was some excitement when Nyheim Hines got traded to the Buffalo Bills offense at the trade deadline. However, a role on offense hasn’t materialized over the last four weeks.

Hines has two carries for -5 yards and one reception (on three targets) for nine yards since joining the Bills. He has just one game with a 15% snap share on offense. Hines has slotted into a special teams role with his new team, which makes him irrelevant for fantasy purposes.

 

Wide Receiver

Jahan Dotson, Washington Commanders

Jahan Dotson began his career with the Commanders with four touchdowns in his first four games operating as Carson Wentz’s primary deep target. Unfortunately, an injury in Week 4 cost Dotson five games. In that time, Wentz was injured and replaced by Taylor Heinicke, who did enough to win the job from him.

That’s bad news for Dotson given Heinicke’s preference to throw short and intermediate routes. In his three games back, Dotson has two receptions on four targets for 27 yards. The Commanders are content utilizing a run-first offense and operating the passing game through Terry McLaurin. That leaves the rookie wide receiver with an inconsistent role that is touchdown-dependent on a team that isn’t trying to throw for touchdowns.

Cooper Kupp, Los Angeles Rams

The same logic we applied to Matthew Stafford also applies to Cooper Kupp. Kupp suffered a high ankle sprain in Week 10 that is expected to sideline him for 6-8 weeks. That makes Kupp unlikely to return during the fantasy playoffs.

The Rams continue to struggle and could shut down Kupp to have him healthy for next year after a lost season. He’s droppable in any league that doesn’t have an IR positional spot.

Tight End

Isaiah Likely, Baltimore Ravens

Isaiah Likely missed Week 12 thanks to an ankle injury, but his role in the Ravens offense will be ambiguous with Mark Andrews back in the lineup.

Likely’s most productive game (six receptions for 77 yards and a touchdown) came when Andrews was knocked out early. The Ravens will continue to be a run-heavy offense with a passing game that runs through Andrews. It’s difficult to see a clear, fantasy-relevant role for Likely going forward.

Kyle Pitts, Atlanta Falcons

Fantasy managers who drafted Kyle Pitts were likely trapped in a weekly conundrum. Pitts was routinely drafted in the third round of fantasy drafts but was rarely providing fantasy value. Pitts had just three games with double-digit fantasy points this season.

Pitts suffered an MCL injury that will need surgery in Week 11 against the Chicago Bears and is now on injured reserve. Even if Pitts does return in his four-week timeline, he will likely need time to get back up to speed in Atlanta’s run-heavy offense.

It’s hard to imagine a scenario where Pitts becomes a league-winner down the stretch, making him droppable in all fantasy formats.

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