AJ Mast/Associated Press
Week 12 of the 2020 NFL season kicked off with a Thanksgiving doubleheader. As is tradition, the Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions hosted games on Thursday. As has been the case more often than not this season, both the Lions and Cowboys lost.
With the win over Dallas, the Washington Football Team moved temporarily into first place in the NFC East. Rookie running back Antonio Gibson helped deliver the win—likely for Washington and for many a fantasy manager—with a historical three-touchdown performance:
Washington is now back in the playoff mix, as are the Cleveland Browns, Tennessee Titans, Buffalo Bills, Miami Dolphins and New York Giants—all teams that won in the early afternoon on Sunday. The Giants and Washington are now tied atop the NFC East at 4-7. The Titans took the lead in the AFC South, while the Bills continue to hold a lead in the AFC East.
In the late afternoon, the New Orleans Saints strengthened their lead atop the NBC with a blowout win over an undermanned Denver Broncos team.
Denver was forced to start wide receiver Kendall Hinton after all quarterbacks on the roster landed on the reserve/COVID-19 list. Hinton was placed in an impossible situation, and unsurprisingly, the results were not pretty.
Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill had a far better afternoon, topping 200 receiving yards in the first quarter en route to a victory.
The San Francisco 49ers, meanwhile, upset the Los Angeles Rams to add a little more drama to a tight NFC West race. In the nightcap, the Green Bay Packers expanded their lead n the NFC North with a big win over the Chicago Bears.
Below, you’ll find results for Week 12, along with a look at some of the top fantasy performances of the week (point-per-reception scoring) and updated AFC and NFC standings.
NFL Week 12
Houston Texans 41, Detroit Lions 25
Deshaun Watson, QB, Houston Texans: 318 passing yards, 4 TDs, 24 rushing yards (33.12 points)
Will Fuller V, WR, Houston Texans: 6 receptions, 171 yards, 2 TDs (35.10 points)
Washington Football Team 41, Dallas Cowboys 16
Antonio Gibson, RB, Washington Football Team: 115 rushing yards, 3 TDs, 5 receptions, 21 receiving yards (36.60 points)
Amari Cooper, WR, Dallas Cowboys: 6 receptions, 112 yards, 1 TD (23.20 points)
Cleveland Browns 27, Jacksonville Jaguars 25
Nick Chubb, RB, Cleveland Browns: 144 rushing yards, 1 TD, 3 receptions, 32 receiving yards (26.60 points)
Jarvis Landry, WR, Cleveland Browns: 8 receptions, 143 receiving yards, 1 TD (28.30 points)
Tennessee Titans 45, Indianapolis Colts 26
Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans: 178 rushing yards, 3 TDs, 2 receptions, 7 receiving yards (38.50 points)
A.J. Brown, WR, Tennessee Titans: 4 receptions, 98 yards, 1 TD (19.80 points)
Atlanta Falcons 43, Las Vegas Raiders 6
Ito Smith, RB, Atlanta Falcons: 65 rushing yards, 1 TD, 4 receptions, 10 receiving yards (17.50 points)
Calvin Ridley, WR, Atlanta Falcons: 6 receptions, 50 yards, 1 TD (17.00 points)
Minnesota Vikings 28, Carolina Panthers 27
Kirk Cousins, QB, Minnesota Vikings: 307 passing yards, 3 TDs, 19 rushing yards (26.78 points)
Justin Jefferson, WR, Minnesota Vikings: 7 receptions, 70 yards, 2 TDs (26.00 points)
Buffalo Bills 27, Los Angeles Chargers 17
Josh Allen, QB, Buffalo Bills: 157 passing yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, 32 rushing yards, 1 rushing TD (17.52 points)
Hunter Henry, TE, Los Angeles Chargers: 7 receptions, 67 yards (13.70 points)
New York Giants 19, Cincinnati Bengals 17
Wayne Gallman, RB, New York Giants: 94 rushing yards, 1 TD, 3 receptions, -3 receiving yards (18.10 points)
Tee Higgins, WR, Cincinnati Bengals: 5 receptions, 44 yards, 1 TD (15.40 points)
New England Patriots 20, Arizona Cardinals 17
Kenyan Drake, RB, Arizona Cardinals: 78 rushing yards, 2 TDs, 3 receptions, 15 receiving yards (24.30 points)
James White, RB, New England Patriots: 18 rushing yards, 2 TDs, 1 reception, -1 receiving yards (14.70 points)
Miami Dolphins 20, New York Jets 3
Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB, Miami Dolphins: 257 passing yards, 2 TDs, 10 rushing yards (19.28 points)
Frank Gore, RB, New York Jets: 74 rushing yards, 3 receptions, 12 receiving yards (11.60 points)
New Orleans Saints 31, Denver Broncos 3
Taysom Hill, QB, New Orleans Saints: 78 passing yards, 1 INT, 44 rushing yards, 2 rushing TDs(18.56 points)
Latavius Murray, RB, New Orleans Saints: 124 rushing yards, 2 TDs, 1 reception, 2 receiving yards (25.60 points)
San Francisco 49ers 23, Los Angeles Rams 20
Cam Akers, RB, Los Angeles Rams: 84 rushing yards, 1 TD (14.40 points)
Deebo Samuel, WR, San Francisco 49ers: 17 receptions, 134 yards (24.40 points)
Kansas City Chiefs 27, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 24
Tyreek Hill, WR, Kansas City Chiefs: 13 receptions, 269 yards, 3 TDs
Patrick Mahomes, QB, Kansas City Chiefs: 462 passing yards, 3 TDs, 28 rushing yards (31.28 points)
Green Bay Packers 41, Chicago Bears 25
Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers: 211 passing yards, 4 TDs, 12 rushing yards (25.64 points)
Allen Robinson, WR, Chicago Bears: 8 receptions, 74 yards, 2 TDs (27.40 points)
Top Fantasy Stars
Antonio Gibson, RB, Washington Football Team
Roger Steinman/Associated Press
As mentioned above, Washington rookie running back Antonio Gibson went off on Thursday, nearly breaking Dallas’ will single-handedly. The third-round pick out of Memphis is proving to be one of the best young runners in the NFL, and he’s a big reason why the Football Team has a realistic shot at winning the NFC East.
In terms of fantasy, Gibson is approaching must-start status—though he isn’t quite there yet. He has topped 50 scrimmage yards in every game after Week 1 and not sits at 645 rushing yards, 233 receiving yards, 32 receptions and 11 touchdowns.
While Gibson isn’t a high-end RB1, he should be a quality RB2 or flex option on most rosters. However, managers should be wary of a tough Week 13 matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Pittsburgh ranks seventh in rushing yards allowed and isn’t likely to surrender the sort of game Gibson had on Thursday. Gibson’s workload will make him worth the start, but managers will want to consider their options.
Jarvis Landry, WR, Cleveland Browns
Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press
It was a pleasant return to fantasy stardom for Browns receiver Jarvis Landry on Sunday. While he has largely been quiet this season, the former PPR machine recently admitted that last season’s hip injury was partially responsible.
“Mentally, I was kind of overloaded as well, not just my body-wise,” Landry said, per Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com. “I was able to revamp, I guess you can say, a little bit with the bye and get my body into a better place, but I’m still not where I want to be.”
Landry had just five receptions and 52 yards in the two games after the Week 9 bye, but he exploded against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday. He caught eight passes for 143 yards and his first touchdown of the season. Hopefully, his breakout performance is a sign of things to come.
Is Landry back to being a must-start in PPR leagues? Not quite, but it’s worth calling him up off the bench for Week 13. The Browns face a very good Titans team next week, but Tennessee’s defense has been susceptible to the pass.
The Titans came into Week 12 ranked just 27th in passing yards allowed.
Derrick Henry, RB, Tennessee Titans
Tennessee Titans running back Derrick Henry matched Gibson’s three rushing touchdowns on Sunday while also racking up more than 180 scrimmage yards. The Indianapolis Colts had no answer for the NFL’s reigning rushing champion, who reminded everyone just how special he can be.
Henry doesn’t carry much PPR value—he has just 14 catches on the season—but that doesn’t matter. Henry has the role and the rushing production needed to be a must-start in all scoring formats.
Through 11 games, Henry has already racked up 1,257 rushing yards with 12 rushing touchdowns. He has not dipped below 60 scrimmage yards in a game this season.
Even against a Cleveland defense that came into Week 12 ranked eighth against the run, Henry should be in store for another strong outing. He isn’t the only offensive weapon on Tennessee’s roster, but he’s the one the Titans are hoping to ride into the postseason.
Tyreek Hill, WR, Kansas City Chiefs
Gibson made a little bit of history on Thursday night. Hill did the same on Sunday. Only two other players have amassed 200 receiving yards in a single quarter since 1980.
With 203 receiving yards in the 1st quarter, @Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill (@cheetah) is the 3rd player since 1980 with 200+ receiving yards in a single quarter.
He joins Qadry Ismail (210 in 3rd quarter on Dec. 12, 1999) and Lee Evans (205 in 1st quarter on Nov. 19, 2006). https://t.co/X8oJs2GrSg
Hill has established himself as an elite wide receiver and Patrick Mahomes’ preferred deep threat. He’s also a player Mahomes trusts in critical situations When the Chiefs needed a late first down to put the game away, Hill was there with an eight-yard reception on 3rd-and-7.
In all, Hill racked up 269 yards and three touchdowns on 13 receptions. Most likely, he won a lot of fantasy games in Week 12.
Hill now has 1,021 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns on the season to go with 60 rushing yards and another score. While he’ll have a tough matchup against Denver in Week 13—the Broncos came into Week 12 ranked ninth in passing yards allowed and gave up less than 100 on Sunday—there’s no reason to pull him from the starting lineup.
The last time Hill faced the Broncos, he caught six passes for 55 yards and a touchdown. While that pales when compared to what Hill did on Sunday, it’s still a solid fantasy stat line.
Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers
A historical Week 12 continued in the night game, as Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers reached another career milestone. He is now a member of the 50,000-yard passing club.
We’ve become used to seeing Rodgers make the remarkable look routine, of course. He turned in another amazing performance against the rival Bears, finishing with 211 passing yards, 12 rushing yards and four passing touchdowns. This came against a Bears defense that came in ranked 10th against the pass and sixth in points allowed.
Rodgers now has 3,100 passing yards, 31 touchdowns and just four interceptions on the season.
Up next for Rodgers and the Packers are the Philadelphia Eagles. On paper, Philadelphia should present a tough challenge—they rank sixth against the pass—but there is little reason to pull Rodgers from the starting lineup.
As he proved against Chicago, Rodgers doesn’t need to have outlandish yardage numbers to put together a strong fantasy performance. The Eagles rank 16th in points allowed and have just three interceptions on the season. Rodgers managers should expect another efficient and effective performance.
AFC, NFC Standings
New Orleans Saints 9-2
Green Bay Packers 8-3
Seattle Seahawks 7-3
Los Angeles Rams 7-4
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 7-5
Arizona Cardinals 5-5
Chicago Bears 5-6
Minnesota Vikings 5-6
San Francisco 49ers 5-6
Washington Football Team 4-7
Atlanta Falcons 4-7
Detroit Lions 4-7
New York Giants 4-7
Carolina Panthers 4-8
Philadelphia Eagles 3-6-1
Dallas Cowboys 3-8
Pittsburgh Steelers 10-0
Kansas City Chiefs 10-1
Cleveland Browns 8-3
Tennessee Titans 8-3
Buffalo Bills 8-3
Indianapolis Colts 7-4
Miami Dolphins 7-4
Baltimore Ravens 6-4
Las Vegas Raiders 6-5
New England Patriots 5-6
Denver Broncos 4-7
Houston Texans 4-7
Los Angeles Chargers 3-8
Cincinnati Bengals 2-7-1
Jacksonville Jaguars 1-10
New York Jets 0-11
Fantasy scoring and roster data via Fantasy Pros for PPR scoring