Troy Reeder, LB, Rams
Rams leader in ILB playing time Micah Kiser landed on IR last week. Reeder got his 2nd start in Kiser's place and delivered big numbers for the 2nd time. He posted 15 tackles in Sunday's loss to San Francisco. Back in Week 5, it was 11 tackles and 3 sacks at Washington. Reeder looks like a high-ceiling starter for at least 2 more games. We'll see if Kiser is ready to return once he's eligible.
A.J. Klein, LB, Bills
A current 3-game hot streak might not leave him available in most IDP leagues. But coming out of the bye likely counteracted that some, and Klein just deserves to be picked up pretty much anywhere right now. He racked up 14 tackles (10 solo), 1.5 sacks and a pass breakup in Sunday’s win over the Chargers. That followed an 11-tackle, 1-sack outing at Arizona and a 2-sack, multiple big-play line vs. Seattle the previous 2 games. With LB Matt Milano still out of action, Klein continues to see elevated playing time and is converting it into fantasy points.
Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Cowboys
Vander Esch saw his playing time grow from 70% in Week 11 to 87% on Thanksgiving against Washington. He also followed 12 tackles against the Vikings with a decent 7 (including 1 for loss). LVE now faces Baltimore, which hit Week 12 providing the 3rd most fantasy points per game to LBs.
Ja’Whaun Bentley, LB, Patriots
Bentley has had more forgettable weeks than useful ones on the stat sheet. But he delivered a season-high 13 tackles (6 solos) in Sunday’s win over the Cardinals. That came on a busy day for the defense: 74 total tackles. But Week 13 brings another upside spot. New England gets the Chargers, who hit Sunday providing the 5th most fantasy points and 2nd most tackles per game to LBs (just 0.1 tackles behind the leader). And Buffalo had 2 LBs rack up 11+ tackles against the Chargers on Sunday.
Jeff Heath, S, Raiders
Heath racked up 10 tackles (9 solo) in his 2nd start since stepping in for Erik Harris. And he did so on a day that saw Vegas tally just 55 total tackles, giving Heath 18.2% of the team total. We’ll be interested to check his playing time after Heath played just 64% of the snaps in his 1st start. But an upside matchup with the Jets in Week 13 makes that matter less -- as long as he’s in the lineup.
Donovan Wilson, S, Cowboys
Wilson has played every snap in 2 straight games, the first 2 times he has done so this season. Those 2 contests have produced 9 and 10 tackles, plus a pair of forced fumbles. Next comes a Baltimore offense that should have him working in the box plenty again, followed by a Cincinnati offense that entered Week 12 as a top-2 scoring matchup for DBs.