Week 13 Lames: The gravy train derails for Brees, Julio and Evans

Roto Arcade

Each week the Noise highlights 10 somewhat un-obvious names whom he believes are destined to implode leave egg on his face. To qualify, each player must be started in at least 50 percent of Yahoo leagues. Speaking as an accountability advocate, I will post results, whether genius or moronic, the following week using the scoring system shown here. If you're a member of TEAM HUEVOS, reveal your Week 13 Lames in the comments section below.

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See Also: Week 13 Flames

Drew Brees, NO, QB (92 percent started)
Matchup: at Pit
Whether it's the long flight, hard hotel beds or Nyquil hangovers, something has transformed Brees into a road wimp in recent years. Away from the creature comforts of the Superdome, the passer has regressed. In his past 17 road contests, a span stretching back to 2012 and including the playoffs, he's failed to eclipse the 20-fantasy-point mark in Yahoo default leagues an astonishing 11 times. No matter the venue, Brees hasn't measured up this season. Drafted closely behind Peyton Manning, he ranks just outside the top-five on a per-game basis and is on pace for his lowest TD output since 2007 (32). He obviously isn't a Matthew Stafford-level bust, but many novices and experts alike expected more. The Steelers aren't the invincible Steel Curtain of years past. Injuries and advanced age have made them vulnerable in certain areas, particularly containing the run. Still, the Pittsburgh D, like its ageless leader Dick LeBeau, has proved resilient as the season has worn on, excelling at times defending the pass. Only five quarterbacks have crossed the 20-point threshold against it. Credit William Gay. The corner has allowed a 51.5 catch rate to his assignments and ranks No. 19 in pass coverage per Pro Football Focus. It's rare for Brees to finish outside the top-10 any given week, but considering the circumstances the fantasy Saint could turn sinner. It would be no surprise if Ryan Tannehill (at NYJ), Mark Sanchez (at Dal) and on-field counterpart, Ben Roethlisberger (vs. NO), outscore him. 

Fearless Forecast: 26-41, 289 passing yards, 1 passing touchdown, 1 interception, 17.4 fantasy points

[Join FanDuel.com's $1.75M Week 13 fantasy league: $25 to enter; top 14,530 teams paid]

Frank Gore, SF, RB (66 percent started)
Matchup: vs. Sea
Gather around friends. Gore's virtual game self will soon be laid to rest. In a vegetable state since Week 6, San Fran's trusty rock is declining rapidly. At times, he's resembled the tackle-breaking beast of yesteryear. However, his 3.39 yards per carry and drudging RB39 rank in his past six games doesn't have his owners dancing in the streets. Despite his precipitous drop-off, it's bewildering why he's continuously counted on. When it comes to run-blocking, the Niners O-line is still one of the league's best (Ranked No. 3 according to PFF), but Colin Kaepernick's glaring inconsistencies have stalled the offense, leading defenses to stack the box. Gore will flash vintage form on occasion, but, if I were Jim Harbaugh, Carlos Hyde would be my featured runner moving forward. The rookie, who's gained an impressive 67 percent of his yards after contact, is more explosive, more powerful and more versatile than his venerated teammate. Because of Harbaugh's stubbornness, it's doubtful the torch will be passed anytime soon. However, if Gore plods his way to minimal gains this week against Seattle, Hyde could start chipping away at his workload. The 'Hawks have given up 4.59 yards per carry since losing premier run-stopper Brandon Membane to injury in Week 10. Still, only three RBs have achieved "Flame" status against them this year (DeMarco Murray, Tre Mason and Jamaal Charles). In a game sure to be dominated by defense and kickers, Gore "The Snore" sleepwalks his way through another week. 

Fearless Forecast: 13 carries, 50 rushing yards, 0 receptions, 0 touchdowns, 5.0 fantasy points 

[Week 13 rankings: Quarterback | Running Back | Receiver | Tight End | Kicker | DST]

Trent Richardson, Ind, RB (55 percent started)
Matchup: vs. Was
T-Pain, presumably afflicted with a nasty case of suckitis, surrendered the start last week to up-and-comer Boom Herron. Though out-snapped 42-33, the ex-Buckeye was far more effective than the veteran, topping Richardson 96-to-42 in total yardage. Richardson, once dubbed a "rolling ball of butcher knives" by Chuck Pagano, couldn't cut through a stick of room-temperature butter. To his credit, the former Alabama slammer has gained 70.6 percent of his yards after contact, but he's looked to truck defenders, which has rarely happened, instead of eluding them. It's no wonder why he's registered 1-yard or less on exactly one-third of his carries. Point blank, my cataract-laden terrier has better vision than Richardson. He is expected to trot out with the first team this week against Washington, but he would need to find the end zone multiple times to warrant serious RB2 consideration, an unlikely outcome. The 'Skins have conceded just 3.64 yards per carry to RBs. Yes, Washington's horrendous pass coverage should allow the Colts to set up shop often inside the red zone, but there's no guarantee Richardson will tote the rock in those situations. I would rather camp outside Wal-Mart in freezing temperatures for a $2 waffle iron than put my playoff hopes on the line with him. Recent waiver sensations C.J. Anderson (at KC), Latavius Murray (at StL) and LeGarrette Blount (at GB) are better options. 

Fearless Forecast: 15 carries, 52 rushing yards, 3 receptions, 14 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 8.8 fantasy points  

Julio Jones, Atl, WR (93 percent started)
Matchup: vs. Ari
Watching Matt Ryan zero in on Roddy White often this season has likely made Jones owners' stomachs churn. The prized receiver, drafted well-inside the position's top-10, hasn't profited. Though he tallied a tidy line in Week 12 (5-68-1), his seven-game touchdown drought leading up to last week explains why he's been more high-end WR2 than sure-fire WR1. His eight dropped passes, the fourth most in the league, along with Ryan's inefficiencies, especially on the road, are also to blame. Arizona was a highly beatable defense over the season's first half. From Weeks 1-8, only Tampa offered a better matchup to wide receivers. However, since then, the Desert Birds have blanketed the competition. Antonio Cromartie and Patrick Peterson have yielded a combined 41.2 catch percentage and 29.2 QB rating to their assignments. Lock. Down. Collectively, the Cards have allowed the fewest fantasy points to WRs in their last four. Jones is a special talent, but against a white-hot secondary, I'm betting he backtracks. 

Fearless Forecast: 4 receptions, 64 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 9.4 fantasy points 

Mike Evans, TB, WR (77 percent started)
Matchup: vs. Cin
My distant cousin has thrown supporters on his shoulders and willed them to the fantasy playoffs. A bulletproof late-season monster, he's established a seemingly unbreakable bond with Josh McCown. Since Week 9, he's connected with the QB 24 times for 505 yards and six touchdowns. His resulting 21.6 points per game average has outpaced second-best WR, Dez Bryant, by a full three points per game during that stretch. Mike, we peons aren't worthy. No doubt, his lengthy frame, deceptive speed and refined route-running have launched him into the stratosphere. However, he accomplished those numbers against largely soft secondaries (Cle, Atl, Was and Chi). Against a more formidable foe, a brief lapse is possible. It's uncommon for Cincinnati to surrender big gainers downfield. On the year, the Bengals have given up the fourth-fewest pass plays of 20-plus yards. Terrance Newman, once a highly torchable DB in Dallas, has allowed just 8.7 yards per catch this season. Meanwhile, his tag-team partners, Adam Jones and Leon Hall, have yielded a combined 11.5 yards per catch. Evans is on a legendary run, but this week, a healthy serving of stuffing could be on the menu. 

Fearless Forecast: 4 receptions, 75 receiving yards, 0 touchdowns, 10.5 fantasy points 



Each week one fortunate guest prognosticator will have a chance to silence the Noise. Following the rules stated above, participants are asked to submit their "Flames" (1 QB, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, 1 TE, 1 D/ST) by midnight PT Tuesdays via Twitter @YahooNoise. How large are your stones?

Reader Record: 36-42, 46.1%

Want to bull rush Brad? Find him on Twitter. Also, check out the Yahoo! Fantasy and Rotoworld crew every Tuesday-Thursday on 'Fantasy Football Live' starting at 6:30 PM ET on NBC Sports Network (Find channel here). Additionally, tune into 'FFL' radio on Yahoo! Sports Radio Sundays at 9 AM ET. 

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