3 Daily Fantasy Football Players to Avoid in Week 12

We have loads of pieces on numberFire dedicated to helping you figure out which plays you should target in your daily fantasy football contests on FanDuel and DraftKings. And you should definitely check them all out!

But an underrated aspect of the DFS process is figuring out who you shouldn't play. Narrowing down your short list of potential plays by avoiding those who are overpriced and/or in tough matchups goes a long way towards ensuring that you create optimal lineups.

Let's go through three guys to consider fading on this week's DFS main slates.

Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints

FanDuel Price: $8,500
DraftKings Price: $6,600

A week ago, we were all over recommending Drew Brees as a top-flight option for the Week 11 slate. And while Brees certainly enjoys the friendly confines of home, where he's racked up a Passing Net Expected Points (NEP) per drop back mark of 0.21 this season against bottom-half defenses, including 1,030 passing yards in only three games, he killed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the road last week.

This week? It may be time to jump out on Brees. He will stay within the NFC South division, but for as porous as the Bucs were, the Carolina Panthers are the inverse against the pass -- they rank fifth via our schedule-adjusted metrics.

With so many outstanding quarterback options available -- led by Matt Ryan, Russell Wilson, and Josh Allen -- it's just not worth spending up at the slot for Brees this week.

Saquon Barkley, RB, New York Giants

FanDuel Price: $7,900
DraftKings Price: $7,900

I hate to break to you all -- but it may not be Saquon Barkley season after all.

While the stud runner has dealt with a variety of maladies this year, the fact of the matter is that if you spent some serious draft equity on the back, you didn't hit pay dirt.

And pay dirt likely ain't coming in Week 12, either. While Mitchell Trubisky and the Chicago Bears' offense has struggled mightily, this defense is nasty. They clock in fourth overall and seventh against the run by our metrics, and they've limited opposing runners like Dalvin Cook (14 carries, 35 rushing yards) and Aaron Jones (13-39) to less than watershed performances.

Spending up for Barkley does not seem like a smart move, at least in Week 12.

Amari Cooper, WR, Dallas Cowboys

FanDuel Price: $7,700
DraftKings Price: $6,600

This isn't exactly going out on a limb, but playing Amari Cooper of the Dallas Cowboys this weekend could be a disaster.

The New England Patriots, the Cowboys' Week 12 foe, has been an impenetrable force on defense. They rank first overall and against the pass, and they've eviscerated opposing passing attacks -- they've actually allowed a Defensive Passing NEP per drop back mark of -0.25 per play. That's right, every time you drop back, you lose a quarter of a point against the Pats.

While Dak Prescott has certainly been outstanding with a personal mark of 0.37 Passing NEP per drop back, that's sure to be tested this weekend. The high-water mark for passing yards allow by this defense is 214 by Carson Wentz last week. And they've certainly been a house of horrors to young quarterbacks, with a four-interception effort against Sam Darnold and three picks off Josh Allen.

If the Pats utilize Stephen Gilmore in shadow coverage on Cooper this weekend, good luck to him and the Cowboys finding their way for a big passing day.

Matt Kupferle is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Matt Kupferle also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username MKupferle. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.