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Things I Learned in Fantasy Football: Week 12

Takeaways from Week 12 as told by the tweets of the Fantasy Stronghold.

In some respects, Kamara was expected to have a pretty good day against a Rams defese that has struggled to corral running backs all season. But 188 total yards and two touchdowns?! Nah dawg, I didn't see that coming. The rookie has seen the end zone seven times in the past five weeks and keeps climing the ranks among fantasy running backs. His schedule the rest of the way is pretty reasonable with two games against the Falcons and one against the Jets on tap. At this point, I wouldn't even be too worried about starting Kamara versus the Panthers next week.

Kareem Hunt is the headliner here but the Chiefs offense as a whole has gone into witness protection since their hot start to the season. The reasons why are probably too numerous to get into in this space but the bottomline is that you're really walking a tightrope with some of their more valuable fantasy players. It's easy to avoid starting Alex Smith or even Tyreek Hill. But what about Hunt or Travis Kelce? Both of those players are still seeing plenty of opportunity and have the ability to break out any given week. That makes it really hard to sit them. But the team's anemic offensive attack over the past six weeks makes them scary start propositions. We've been trying to exert patience waiting for the revival but with big matchups coming, it's understandable if you're fading your Chiefs.

Yep. It finally happened. After waiting all season long and getting to the point where nearly everyone had given up on it, Joe Mixon posted a big number. Even stranger, it came versus a Browns defense that had been pretty stout against the run this year. Sure, plenty of members of The Joe Mixon Truther Committee would liek to take this moment to gloat but Sunday's explosion feels like an outlier to the rest of the season. The rookie's usage wasn't much greater than any other week this season and Cincinnati still has problems along the offensive line. It's hard to remain optimistic with the Steelers next up on the slate for the Bengals. If you took advantage of this blowup, good for you. Don't expect it to continue.

Do not read this unless your name is Mike Mularkey

Okay Mike, now that it's just the two of us, let's talk. I know DeMarco Murray is a veteran who has put in a lot of years of faithful NFL service. I'm also aware that you're paying him a decent chunk of money over the next couple of years. But there's really no good explanation for why Murray is getting so many touches and clogging up your offense. Selfishly, those of us who love Derrick Henry would like to see what the young back could do with an RB1's workload. He had 79 yards on 13 carries while Murray had nine yards on 12 attempts. In limited opportunities, Henry has proven that he is more effective than Murray. Why not give him a shot to carry the load? And if you won't do it for us, do it for yourself. With Marcus Mariota struggling (that's something we need to address another time), the Exotic part of your offense isn't working. At least get the Smashmouth part going.

The past few weeks in the fantasy football world have involved plenty of self-flagellation over the Bucs offense's failure to launch despite our breathless wishes that the opposite would be the case in 2017. Doug Martin is as guilty of it anyone. The whole thing is a mess and there is no story you can tell yourself that would make sense for having him in your lineup. The dream is dead for this year. Pick up the pieces and rebuild your life.

If Joe Mixon was Mr. This Is The Week, then DeVante Parker is Mr. This Is The Year. Except for it's not the year. It hasn't ever been the year. This can't fully be blamed on the quarterback situation. After all, we've seen big games from Jarvis Landry and Kenny Stills. Even Julius Thomas posted a 6/84/1 game a few weeks back. Meanwhile we're still waiting on that Parker train to reach the station. I, for one, am done waiting this season. The Dolphins offense is a soul-sucking entity and apparently it has used Parker's young NFL career as the totem to animate its undead football corpse into some twisted semblance of life.

In case you don't remember, the hype for Christian McCaffrey was deafening from the moment he was drafted. So when he didn't put up video game numbers from the start there was some talk in the interwebs that maybe he was overrated. Much like we can be too quick to crown players, we're also a little too quick to bury guys. In the case of McCaffrey, the ability always seemed to be there. The Panthers even did a lot of new things to get him the ball in space, even if it hadn't translated to a ton of production. Yet like plenty of other rookies before him, it takes time for the game to slow down a little bit. In McCaffrey's case, that process looks like it's starting to take effect. That doesn't mean he's going to start putting up Kamara-type numbers going forward but he should start to be a more productive part of your fantasy roster. And just in time for the playoffs, too.

Remember that talk I wanted to have about Marcus Mariota? Yeah, I think it's time. Through 10 games now, Mariota has nine touchdown passes and 12 interceptions while averaging 227.3 passing yards per game. The Titans passing game doesn't scare anyone and Mariota still doesn't really look for anyone besides Delanie Walker when things break down. Corey Davis is a great talent. Doesn't matter if you can't actually get him the ball.

We've pointed and laughed all the Giants this season when it comes to covering tight ends. That has distracted us from the other teams that are bad against the position -- namely the Broncos and Browns. It's time to shine the light on some of the other weak links in this chain so that we may exploit them for our own fantasy game. Cleveland Browns ... you're on notice! They entered Week 12 having allowed the most receptions to the position. That was before Tyler Kroft caught three passes. Next week, the Browns visit the Chargers. Hunter Henry, come on down!

I don't want to have to pay attention to Ricky Seals-Jones. I don't want to have to pay attention to Ricky Seals-Jones. I don't want to have to pay attention to Ricky Seals-Jones. I don't want to have to pay attention to Ricky Seals-Jones. I don't want to have to pay attention to Ricky Seals-Jones. I don't want to have to pay attention to Ricky Seals-Jones.


  • Robby Anderson has six touchdowns in the last five games. My Jets apology tour continues.
  • Julio Jones had two touchdowns in a regular season game for the first time since Week 3 of 2015.
  • The Raiders defense finally got an interception.
  • Eddie Lacy had a season-high 17 carries. He ran for 46 yards.
  • Defenses that scored as many or fewer points than you this week (heading into SNF): Browns and Cowboys. That's it. Good job, guys.
  • TE Watch: You know what? The top 10 tight ends this week looked pretty much as expected. Good job, guys.

And one for the road...

Marcas Grant is a fantasy editor for and a man who is giddy over the fact that he has a fridge full of Thanksgiving leftover. Though he's pretty sure he'll be over it by Tuesday. Tweet him your dinner plans for this week or ask fantasy questions on Twitter @MarcasG. If you read all of that, congrats. He also dishes out (get it?) fantasy advice -- and life shenanigans -- on Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat (marcasg9)

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