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Fantasy Sports Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football 2012: Week 13 Surprise Performers

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2012 Fantasy Football Surprise Performances Week 13

Surprise
Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE

Week 13 of the 2012 NFL season featured quite a few surprises. From surprising wins to breakout performances from unlikely sources, this week provided plenty of suspense and intrigue for the fantasy football world.

In one of the more surprising victories, the Pittsburgh Steelers were able to defeat a division foe in the Baltimore Ravens despite seemingly having everything against them after their horrible offensive showing last week. The St. Louis Rams were able to stave off another tie game with the San Francisco 49ers and earn a hard-fought victory over their NFC West rival in overtime. Lastly, after what happened this weekend with Jovan Belcher, the Kansas City Chiefs were able to find a way to win over the Carolina Panthers bearing heavy hearts.

Star players like Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck (at Detroit Lions, 31.94 points), Philadelphia Eagles RB Bryce Brown (at Dallas Cowboys, 28.30 points), and Lions WR Calvin Johnson (vs. Colts, 23.10 points) had some of the top individual performances of the week. However, these elite fantasy options were obvious starts this week and weren’t necessarily surprises. Here’s a look at some surprising players at each position who had unexpected fantasy performances in Week 13.

* Fantasy points are determined by Yahoo! fantasy football default scoring settings. Players for this list are owned in less than 50% of Yahoo! fantasy football leagues and ownership numbers are up to date as of Sunday, December 2. Statistics listed for players are subject to change after the game. Players from the Monday night matchup between the New York Giants and Washington Redskins were not considered for this list.

Austin Chang is a featured columnist and fantasy sports expert at Rant Sports and you can follow him on Twitter @_austinchang.

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QB Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks

Wilson
Rob Grabowski-US PRESSWIRE

QB Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (at Chicago Bears, 22% owned)

Week 13 statistics: 293 passing yards, 71 rushing yards, 2 passing touchdowns

Fantasy points scored: 26.82 points

After putting up solid numbers against the Miami Dolphins last week, Wilson topped his own performances with an even better showing in Week 13 against a tough Bears defense. Leading his team to another all-important victory for the NFC Wild Card standings, he also added to his good day with 71 rushing yards on nine carries.

Honorable mentions: Buffalo Bills’ Ryan Fitzpatrick (vs. Jacksonville Jaguars, 43% owned, 19.28 points), Cleveland Browns’ Brandon Weeden (at Oakland Raiders, 12% owned, 17.66 points), Chiefs’ Brady Quinn (vs. Panthers, 1% owned, 17.24 points)

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RB James Starks, Green Bay Packers

Starks
Benny Sieu-US PRESSWIRE

RB James Starks, Green Bay Packers (vs. Minnesota Vikings, 22% owned)

Week 13 statistics: 66 rushing yards, 16 receiving yards, 1 touchdown

Fantasy points scored: 14.20 points

Despite sharing the workload with Alex Green, Starks led the Packers in rushing for the fourth straight game. Taking advantage of his situation by getting his first touchdown of the season, Starks has become a usable flex option in what is typically a weak fantasy position of Packers starting running back.

Honorable mentions: Colts’ Vick Ballard (at Lions, 37% owned, 12.20 points), Steelers’ Jonathan Dwyer (at Ravens, 46% owned, 11.70 points), Lions’ Joique Bell (vs. Colts, 26% owned, 10.20 points)

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WR Donnie Avery, Indianapolis Colts

Avery
Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE

WR Donnie Avery, Colts (at Lions, 20% owned)

Week 13 statistics: 91 receiving yards, two touchdowns

Fantasy points scored: 21.10 points

Targeted by Andrew Luck 14 times, which is more than what Reggie Wayne and T.Y. Hilton received, Avery was huge in the team’s victory over the Lions. Scoring his first touchdown since Week 1, this breakout performance comes after weeks of mediocre fantasy outings, thus making him an unreliable option.

Honorable mentions: Browns’ Josh Gordon (at Raiders, 34% owned, 17.60 points), Seahawks’ Golden Tate (at Bears, 29% owned, 15.60 points), Raiders’ Rod Streater (vs. Browns, 1% owned, 15.60 points)

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TE Tony Moeaki, Kansas City Chiefs

Moeaki
Denny Medley-US PRESSWIRE

TE Tony Moeaki, Chiefs (vs. Panthers, 2% owned)

Week 13 statistics: 54 receiving yards, 1 touchdown

Fantasy points scored: 11.40 points

Another player to grab his first touchdown of the season is Moeaki. Still trying to find his role after missing all of last season with an injury, he has started to show a little bit of consistency with at least 40 receiving yards in each of his last four outings. That being said, the Chiefs offense revolves around the running game, making Moeaki a weak fantasy option.

Honorable mentions: Denver Broncos’ Jacob Tamme (vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 34% owned, 8.90 points), Colts’ Coby Fleener (at Lions, 11% owned, 8.60 points), New York Jets’ Jeff Cumberland (vs. Arizona Cardinals, 0% owned, 8.50 points)

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K Connor Barth, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Barth
Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

K Connor Barth, Buccaneers (at Jaguars, 27% owned)

Week 13 statistics: 3-for-3 field goals made (31, 50, 55), 2 extra points made

Fantasy points scored: 15.00 points

Barth continued his streak of excellent fantasy performances with three more field goals in Week 13, including two from 50+ yards. This was his fourth consecutive game with multiple field goals made, making him a highly active and usable fantasy kicker.

Honorable mentions: Steelers’ Shaun Suisham (at Ravens, 36% owned, 14.00 points), Dolphins’ Dan Carpenter (vs. New England Patriots, 13% owned, 12.00 points), Bills’ Rian Lindell (vs. Jaguars, 3% owned, 12.00 points), Chiefs’ Ryan Succop (vs. Panthers, 3% owned, 12.00 points)

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St. Louis Rams team defense

Rams
Jeff Curry-US PRESSWIRE

Rams team defense (vs. 49ers, 20% owned)

Week 13 statistics: 13 points allowed, 3 sacks, 1 safety, 1 fumble recovery, 1 defensive touchdown

Fantasy points scored: 17.00 points

The Rams defense came up big once again, this time against a much tougher opponent in the 49ers. From a key fumble recovery by Janoris Jenkins to success in keeping the 49ers out of the end zone, the Rams defense has certainly played some of their best football against San Francisco this season.

Honorable mentions: San Diego Chargers team defense (vs. Cincinnati Bengals, 29% owned, 14.00 points), Bengals team defense (at Chargers, 49% owned, 12.00 points), Bills team defense (vs. Jaguars, 24% owned, 9.00 points)