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Inside the Matchup
Week 14
12/5/19; Updated: 12/6/19

By: Andy Swanson | Jason Katz | Nick Caron | HC Green



Sunday Early:



Sunday Late:

IND @ TB | LAC @ JAX | PIT @ ARI | TEN @ OAK | KC @ NE | SEA @ LAR



- Green highllight indicates plus matchup (top eight)
- Red highlight indicates negative matchup (bottom eight)

Cowboys @ Bears - (Swanson)
Line: DAL -3.0
Total: 43.5

Passing Game Thoughts: The Cowboys enter this week’s Thursday Night Football game with a disappointing 6-6 record after getting manhandled at home on Thanksgiving by the listing Buffalo Bills. Luckily for Cowboys fans, the Eagles said hold my beer and lost to a Miami Dolphins team that is in contention for the first overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Despite the poor overall record, Dak Prescott has been sensational for fantasy owners with 321.6 fantasy points on the year. Only Lamar Jackson has scored more fantasy points, and outside of tough matchups against the Saints and the Patriots, Dak has not given fantasy owners fewer than 20 points per game.

By reputation, the Bears are a tough matchup that is causing some Dak owners consternation when looking at their rosters this week. But in reality, Chicago is not the sort defense they were last season, with four players posting at least 20 fantasy points against the Bears in 2019, including David Blough last week at Ford Field.

It is not the greatest matchup for Dak, but he should provide enough of a floor to be a solid QB1. The bigger question surrounds Amari Cooper.

Cooper ranks fifth overall with 971 yards and seven touchdowns for 139.1 fantasy points, but he appears to be limited with knee and foot injuries despite his absence from the injury report and his insistence that he is ok.

His inconsistent play on the road has to give his owners pause, as only two of Coopers seven receiving touchdowns have come on the road, and he was terrible against the Lions and the Patriots on the road in Weeks 11 and 12.

You are starting Cooper, no doubt, but don’t be surprised to see Michael Gallup be the top-performing wide receiver for the Cowboys on Sunday. Gallup lit up the Lions for nine catches at 148 yards three weeks ago when Cooper struggled, and he will once again see the No.2 cornerback this week with Cooper seeing the No. 1 CB for the Bears.

Another player to consider is Jason Witten. The ageless one caught six passes for 42 yards and a score last week against the Bills, and the Bears give up the 11th-most points to tight ends.

CHI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.27
CHI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.15
CHI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.28
CHI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.12

Running Game Thoughts: The Bears have not been a great run defense since they lost Akiem Hicks to an injury earlier this year. The Bears rank 15th in points allowed to running backs, with 10 rushing touchdowns allowed and bit games by Todd Gurley, Jordan Howard, Latavius Murray, and Josh Jacobs.

The Cowboys made a huge mistake last week giving the ball to Zeke Elliott only 12 times on the ground against a Bills team that is better against the pass than the rush. Zeke was reportedly furious after the game and could be in line for squeaky wheel treatment.

The game plan for the Cowboys should be simple. Run the ball early and often, use play action passing to take advantage of aggressive linebacker play on run-stopping, and force Trubisky to make mistakes with the ball.

Zeke owners do not need me to tell them to start their first-round stud, but rather a confirmation that he is in line for a big day. Based on this matchup and how they got away from the run last week, I anticipate Zeke is in line for 25 carries with 100 yards and a touchdown well within reach.

Value Meter:
QB1: Dak Prescott (Low-End)
RB1: Ezekiel Elliott (High-End)
WR2: Amari Cooper (High-End)
WR2: Michael Gallup (Low-End)
WR3: Randall Cobb (Low-End)
T2: Jason Witten (High-End)

Passing Game Thoughts: Mitchell Trubisky enters the game against the Cowboys riding high, with his two best performances of the year, including 338 yards and three passing touchdowns last week against the Lions.

Trubisky took advantage of easy matchups against the Giants at home and the Lions on the road to post those solid games. It will be interesting to see how he does against a Cowboys defense that allows the eighth fewest points to opposing quarterbacks.

It is one thing to play well against the Lions and the G-men, but the pressure put on by the Cowboys is going to force Trubisky to make quick decisions and smart plays with the ball, which is something that he has struggled with this year.

Taylor Gabriel is out once again this week with a concussion, so look for Anthony Miller to be an active part of the passing offense. Miller is averaging 11 targets in each of his last two games and should come close to double digits again this game.

Allen Robinson has been amazing for fantasy owners with 217 yards and two touchdowns combined in Weeks 12 and 13. While I don’t think he is in line for a massive game against Byron Jones or Chidobe Auzie, I do think he is still worth a start as a low-end WR2.

No outside wide receiver has reached 100 yards this season against the Cowboys outside of Robby Anderson, who benefited from a fluke bomb when the Cowboys lost to the Jets Week 6. Most of the damage has been done in the slot.

DAL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.25
DAL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.14
DAL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.26
DAL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.13

Running Game Thoughts: The Bears running game has been a massive disappointment with David Montgomery and Tarik Cohen combining to score the seventh-fewest points on the year. Montgomery has just one 100-yard rushing game on the season, and his 3.5 yard per carry average has been shockingly bad for a guy who flashed amazing skills in the preseason and in college.

Cohen has not garnered enough volume in the passing game to be worthy of a start, and the diminutive running back has just one game of double-digit fantasy points this year.

With that said, Dallas is far easier to run on that they are to pass against with Leighton Vander Eshe out with a neck injury. Sean Lee is a stud for his age, but he is not the same quick, sideline to sideline linebacker he once was.

If head coach Matt Nagy is smart, he will try to get the running game going with Montgomery to limit the mistakes by Trubisky and keep the Dallas offense off the field. The last thing he wants is to try and get into a shootout with Dak and the Cowboys.

Look for Montgomery to get around 20 carries for 80 yards and a possible score. I would only start Cohen if I were very desperate.

Value Meter:
QB1: Mitchell Trubisky (Low-End)
RB2: David Montgomery (Low-End)
WR2: Allen Robinson (Low-End)
WR3: Anthony Miller (Low-End)

Prediction: Dallas 21, Chicago 10 ^ Top

Panthers @ Falcons - (Green)
Line: ATL -3.0
Total: 47.0

Passing Game Thoughts: It feels like a lifetime ago that Kyle Allen was racking up wins and having fans saying "Cam who?". Last Sunday, the Panthers suffered a fourth straight defeat that brought Ron Rivera's time in Charlotte to an end with Allen passing for 278 yards and two TDs to go with a pair of turnovers. This week brings a rematch with Atlanta, who blew out Carolina in Week 11, a game in which Allen threw for a career-high 325 yards but also tossed four picks and couldn't engineer a TD drive.

D.J. Moore (6-75-1 last Sunday) was again the team's top wideout, being targeted a dozen times, second only to Christian McCaffrey (7-58-0), who saw 13 looks. The passing game took a hit when Greg Olsen (concussion) bowed out with a concussion after three grabs for 22 yards against the 'Skins. He's currently in the NFL's protocol and will need to be cleared to play in Week 14. That could mean more action for Curtis Samuel (4-65-1), who was targeted seven times last week, his most since Nov. 10. If Olsen is out, the team could turn to Ian Thomas, though he'd hold no fantasy appeal.

Atlanta's defense was red hot back in Week 11, but after holding both New Orleans and Carolina without a touchdown, they've reverted closer to their pre-bye form. For the year, the Falcons are 26th against the pass (259.5 yards per game), even though they held Drew Brees to 181 yards on Thanksgiving night. Any hopes of a strong finish have gone up in smoke, and the Falcons are left to play out the string.

ATL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.7
ATL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.22
ATL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.7
ATL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.16

Running Game Thoughts: For the third time this season, someone held McCaffrey to fewer than 50 yards rushing, but unlike when the Buccaneers did it in two earlier games, the Redskins allowed Run CMC to top 100 total yards thanks to his receiving output. It was also his third game of the year without a TD, and one of the others came in the first meeting with Atlanta, which held him to 70 yards on 14 carries. McCaffrey dominated through the air, though, amassing 121 yards on 11 receptions.

The Falcons sit 17th against the run at 108.7 yards allowed per contest, and though they held the Saints to 95 in Week 13, New Orleans did average 5.3 yards per carry. Also of note, Jordan Scarlett (knee/ankle) was placed on IR, reaffirming Reggie Bonnafon as the handcuff of choice.

Value Meter:
RB1: Christian McCaffrey
WR1: D.J. Moore
WR3/Flex: Curtis Samuel
TE1: Greg Olsen (if healthy)
Bench: Kyle Allen

Passing Game Thoughts: Even with Devonta Freeman back, Matt Ryan attempted 50 passes on Turkey Day, his second-most of the year. He completed 35 for 312 yards, 2 TDs and 2 INTs while getting brutalized by the Saints' pass rush for nine sacks. Dan Quinn was asked in the aftermath if there was consideration to shutting down Ryan and Julio Jones (shoulder), who was inactive, but he dismissed that notion. Ryan threw for 311 yards and a score last time against Carolina, and he remains a solid QB1.

All eyes will be on Jones' status leading into Sunday, as his status will have a trickledown effect on everyone's fantasy value. If Jones is active, he's a must start, having caught six passes for 91 yards in Week 11. Calvin Ridley (8-91-0 on TNF) is another lock, though his value might vacillate between WR2 and WR3. The wild card for Week 14 is Russell Gage, who has 13 receptions, 128 yards and a touchdown over his last two games. If Jones is up, Gage isn't worth playing. If Jones can't go, however, Gage could be a flex option.

There's optimism that Austin Hooper (knee) can return after a three-game absence, and if he does that would be a major boon for the passing game. Hooper was a top-five tight end prior to suffering a knee injury. Carolina is 14th versus the pass for the year, but they're in freefall, and it'll be interesting to see how Rivera's dismissal affects the team's overall performance.

CAR FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.23
CAR FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.1
CAR FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.15
CAR FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.26

Running Game Thoughts: As noted, Freeman returned last week, carrying the ball 17 times for 51 yards. Only three teams average fewer yards per carry than Atlanta's 3.5, but if there was ever a week to get well, this is it. The Panthers have allowed 137.5 yards per game this year (29th) and looked disinterested in tackling against the Redskins, who averaged a whopping 8.3 yards per carry and scored three times on the ground. With that matchup, Freeman is worth rolling the dice on as an RB2.

Value Meter:
QB1: Matt Ryan
RB2: Devonta Freeman
WR1: Julio Jones (if healthy)
WR2/WR3: Calvin Ridley
Flex: Russell Gage (if Jones is inactive)
TE1: Austin Hooper (if healthy)

Prediction: Falcons 27, Panthers 21 ^ Top

Ravens at Bills - (Katz)
Line: BAL -5.5
Total: 43.5

Passing Game Thoughts: Quarterback doesn’t matter in fantasy football…except when your quarterback is Lamar Jackson. The man who may go down as the greatest rushing quarterback in NFL history is having a historic sophomore campaign. He has failed to finish as a QB1 just once all season and has eight top three finishes.

A road date to Buffalo will be one of his toughest tests yet. The Bills allow fewer than 200 passing yards per game and only they and the Patriots have yet to reach double digit touchdown passes allowed this season. With that being said, Jackson doesn’t butter his bread with his passing, which is why he’s the best quarterback in fantasy without anything resembling a useful receiver. Hollywood Brown just hasn’t been the same since his Week 5 ankle injury. He’s playing a little more than half the snaps and has surpassed four targets just once in his past five games. He cannot be started in a matchup against Tre’Davious White.

The remainder of Jackson’s receivers are on the waiver wire. Mark Andrews has one of the lowest snap shares and routes run rates amongst relevant tight ends, but he leads all tight ends in hog rate, keeping him a strong fantasy option. The Bills are stifling against the tight end, allowing just 6.0 fantasy points per game to the position, but it is difficult to imagine you can do better than Andrews.

BUF FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.30
BUF FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.17
BUF FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.27
BUF FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.32

Running Game Thoughts: The Bills are far more vulnerable on the ground than through the air. With Jackson freezing linebackers, Mark Ingram should bounce back after a lackluster effort against the 49ers. Ingram posted back to back top five finishes in the two previous weeks so there is no reason to worry. He continues to split snaps with Gus Edwards, but Edwards does not see remotely enough touches to be a fantasy option. Continue to treat Ingram as an every week starter.

Value Meter:
QB1: Lamar Jackson (high end)
RB2: Mark Ingram (high end)
TE1: Mark Andrews (mid-range)
Bench: Marquise Brown, Gus Edwards, Willie Snead

Passing Game Thoughts: Is it time to admit that Josh Allen is just good? Maybe. When it comes to fantasy, Allen has been a must start. He has only had one dreadful outing all season, which was against the Patriots. The Ravens are the second best defense he’s faced all season and it is entirely possible, if not likely, that his four week run of QB1 finishes comes to an end. Allen’s 35.8 rushing yards per game keep his floor high so it is doubtful he will be the reason you lose, but the spike week is probably not coming.

The situation is also poor for John Brown. While Brown’s floor remains intact, he struggled against Byron Jones and Chris Harris the last two weeks. Marlon Humphrey is just as difficult a matchup. You don’t need to fade Brown, but it is fair to consider alternatives if you have the depth. Cole Beasley took his sweet revenge on the Cowboys last week and is a sneaky smart play this week. If there is an area the Ravens are vulnerable, it’s the slot. They allow 12.8 fantasy points per game to the slot. Beasley is a legitimate option. Dawson Knox continues to see the vast majority of snaps and very few targets. He is far off the fantasy radar this week.

BAL FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.29
BAL FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.24
BAL FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.18
BAL FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.30

Running Game Thoughts: Devin Singletary was simply awesome against the Cowboys on Thanksgiving. The Ravens allow just 14.5 fantasy points per game to opposing RB1s and allow the third fewest receiving yards to running backs. It is unlikely you have a better option than Singletary, especially given his usage, but expectations should be tempered. Frank Gore’s sole job, at this point, is to aggravate fantasy owners by potentially vulturing a touchdown. He belongs on the waiver wire.

Value Meter:
QB2: Josh Allen (risky start)
RB2: Devin Singletary (low end)
WR3: Cole Beasley
WR3: John Brown
Bench: Dawson Knox, Frank Gore

Prediction: Ravens 27, Bills 23 ^ Top

Bengals @ Browns - (Swanson)
Line: CLE -7.5
Total: 41.0

Passing Game Thoughts: Head coach Zac Taylor benched rookie Ryan Finley in favor of Andy Dalton for the remainder of the season when it became clear that Finley is not a franchise quarterback of the future and the Bengals most certainly will use the first overall pick on a QB.

Dalton played well in his first of four final games as the QB of the Bengals, with 243 yards and a touchdown in a 22-6 win at home for against the Jets. It was the first win of the season for Cincinnati and the first for Taylor in the NFL.

The Red Rifle gets some reinforcements at wide receiver with the return of John Ross from IR. Although Taylor did say that he intends on easing Ross back into the game flow, another skill position player for Dalton will certainly help the passing offense, and Ross gives them a fast, outside deep threat that has been missing.

The Browns give up the 14th most points to opposing quarterbacks and the 23rd most points to wide receivers. On paper, it is not a great matchup for Dalton or the skill portion players, but both DaVante Parker and James Washington had solid games against Cleveland in the last two games, giving hope that Boyd can continue his solid play as of late.

Boyd has a touchdown in each of his last two games, highlighted by a 5/101/1 game two weeks ago against the Steelers. His matchup outside against Denzel Ward is going to be fun to watch.

The Browns rank fourth in touchdown receptions allowed to the tight end position. Noah Fant posted his best game of the season against the Browns, and Mike Gesicki also reached pay dirt two weeks ago against Cleveland.

C.J. Uzomah and Tyler Eifert combined for six catches for 63 yards on eight targets last week against the Jets. Starting either one of them in the fantasy playoffs is going to take some intestinal fortitude, but don’t be surprised if one of them scores this week.

CLE FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.14
CLE FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.16
CLE FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.23
CLE FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.10

Running Game Thoughts: Joe Mixon was unquestionably a monster bust for most of the season after earning a top-15 ADP in most drafts this summer. He scored a combined 4.4 points in his first two games and failed to top two yards per carry in four of his first seven weeks of action.

Flash forward to the second half of the season, and you will find a much more productive Joe Mixon. With at least 13 fantasy points in four of his last five games, Mixon ranks 10th in fantasy points per game since Week 8, just behind Zeke Elliott and ahead of Chris Carson, Leonard Fournette, Nick Chubb, and Todd Gurley.

The Browns rank 16th in fantasy points allowed to running backs but have only given up six rushing touchdowns on the season and two since Week 6. You are going to likely stick with Mixon based on his recent play, just don’t be surprised if the Browns keep him out of the end zone.

Value Meter:
QB2: Andy Dalton (High-End)
RB1: Joe Mixon (Low-End)
WR2: Tyler Boyd (Low-End)
WR4: John Ross (Low-End)
TE2: C.J. Uzomah (High-End)

Passing Game Thoughts: Baker Mayfield enters Week 14 as the No. 25 ranked quarterback in fantasy points per game (minimum of seven games played), behind Kyle Allen, Daniel Jones, Andy Dalton, and Ryan Tannehill. Not exactly the breakout season many fantasy writers and analysts predicted based on how Mayfield played last season and the addition of Odell Beckham Jr.

Mayfield has been a bust. No doubt about it. But even busts can come through with monster games for fantasy owners in need of a streaming option, and this week at home against the Bengals could be a week in which the second-year former first overall pick comes through with fantasy gold.

Six opposing quarterbacks have managed to score at least 25 fantasy points against the Bengals in 2019, including Jimmy Garoppolo with 28 points Week 2 and Lamar Jackson topping 30 fantasy points in each of his games against his divisional foe.

Although Sam Darnold was held to just 13 points last week, you can throw on the Bengals, and Mayfield should air it out to his wide receivers a ton this week, assuming his bruised hand will not limit his play.

Ten different wide receivers have topped double digits in fantasy points against Cincinnati, with Robby Anderson posting a sold 7/101/0 line last week at Paul Brown Stadium.

Like his quarterback, Odell Beckham Jr. has been a massive bust this season as the No. 43-ranked WR in average points per game. He has just two 100-yard games on the season and two receiving touchdowns. If you are somehow still alive and made the playoffs with ODB on your roster, this is the week in which he could come through with a week-winning performance.

CIN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.9
CIN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.7
CIN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.20
CIN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.15

Running Game Thoughts: The tandem of Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt have combined for the 9th-most fantasy points over the past three weeks. Although his volume and yardage totals have been pedestrian, Hunt has a touchdown in each of his last two games and is in line for another touchdown this week against a Bengals team that ranks seventh in points allowed to running backs.

As expected against a stout Pittsburgh run defense, Chubb had his worst game of the season last week with 58 yards on 16 carries and no touchdowns. It came at a terrible time for his owners, but look for him to bounce back this week.

You can run on the Bengals, a team that has allowed the fourth-most yards on the ground this year. If game flow works out well for the Browns and they build an early lead that is beneficial for a positive running game script, Chubb could be in line for a 100-yard game on Sunday.

Value Meter:
QB1: Baker Mayfield (Low-End)
RB1: Nick Chubb (High-End)
RB3: Kareem Hunt (High-End)
WR2: Odell Beckham Jr. (High-End)
WR2: Jarvis Landry (Low-End)
TE2: Demetrius Harris (High-End)

Prediction: Cleveland 28, Cincinnati 21 ^ Top

Redskins @ Packers - (Swanson)
Line: GB -12.5
Total: 42.0

Passing Game Thoughts: The Redskins head into Green Bay to take on the Packers riding a two-game win streak after beating the Lions at home Week 12 and the Panthers on the road in Carolina last Sunday.

Rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins now has two victories on his resume, although he has not been the reason for the recent success for the team. The common denominator for the Lions and Panthers is an inability to stop the run, and the Redskins rank seventh in the league over the past three games in combined points scored by running backs.

Haskins has done a much better job of protecting the ball by making smart decisions and not throwing into coverage. From a fantasy perspective, he continues to be un-ownable in anything other than the deepest of two quarterbacks leagues, as he did not throw a touchdown pass in either of the team’s two victories.

Leading receiver Terry McLaurin was held to two catches for eight yards on four targets last week with the offense focusing on running the ball. The breakout rookie of the year candidate has not scored a touchdown or topped 100 receiving yards since Week 6 at Miami and will be a tough start once again this week against a Packers team that is far easier to run on than pass.

The Packers rank 6th in fantasy points allowed to running backs and 24th to wide receivers, which tells you everything you need to know about the game plan Bill Callahan will use this week. It will be a heavy dose of Derrius Guice and Adrian Peterson, followed by even more runs by Guice and Peterson.

The Packers are an aggressive team that can be beaten with screen passes and play action when the opposition is running well. Haskins may be able to find McLaurin on a few big pass plays, but the risk of a two catch game is high, making the rookie WR a questionable start.

GB FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.24
GB FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.5
GB FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.24
GB FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.3

Running Game Thoughts: Head Coach Bill Callahan is a throwback to a different time in the NFL where smash-mouth football and running the ball 60% of the time was the norm. If he had his way, he would run the ball nearly every down, with a few play action passes sprinkled in to keep the defense honest.

Callahan got his way last week against an injury-riddled Panthers team that could not stop the run. Guice and Peterson combined to rush for 238 yards and three touchdowns, with Chris Thompson adding 14 yards on three carries for good measure.

Look for a similar game plan this week against the Packers, a team that is far worse against the run than the pass. Not only does running the ball take advantage of a weakness on the Packers defense, but it also limits the number of pass attempts for Dwayne Haskins and keeps the ball out of Aaron Rodgers’ hands.

Both Guice and Peterson are worthy of starts this week, as both players could get upwards of 15 rushes each. The biggest worry is game script and the possibility of the Redskins falling behind early and needing to pas more than they would like.

Value Meter:
QB2: Dwayne Haskins (Low-End)
RB2: Derrius Guice (High-End)
RB3: Adrian Peterson (Low-End)
WR3: Terry McLaurin (Low-End)

Passing Game Thoughts: As expected, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers passing offense enjoyed a get-well game against the Giants last week. Rodgers finished as the No.1 QB for the week with 243 yards and four passing touchdowns for 30.6 fantasy points. Rodgers also added 24 yards rushing, including a season-high 15-yard scramble in the second half.

Prior to the 30-point showing against the Giants, Rodgers had been struggling with three games of 13 or fewer fantasy points against the Chargers, Panthers, and 49ers.

The future first ballot hall of fame quarterback has four games this year of over 30 fantasy points, with all four opponents ranked in the bottom 12 in pass defense and points allowed to quarterbacks. Washington ranks 11th in fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks, with five games allowed of over 28 points this season. Unless the Packers defense has a monster game and creates a negative game script for Rodgers, he should once again post a solid game for fantasy owners.

Davante Adams has not lived up to his first-round ADP as injuries and subpar play has limited him to just three receiving touchdowns in eight games. Although Adams’ 10.3 fantasy points per game place him as the No.17 wide receiver in fantasy, it is over four points per game fewer than last season, and he failed to reach six fantasy points three times in eight games. By comparison, Adams failed to score 10 points in just one game last year.

On a positive note, all three of Adams’ touchdowns have come in the last two games as he appears to be heating up just in time for the fantasy playoffs. I just wonder how many of his owners were able to weather his slow start and still make the playoffs this year.

Geronimo Allison and Allen Lazard continue to be the other two wide receivers who have some fantasy value in Green Bay, with Marquez Valdes-Scantling posting a season-worst 27% of the snaps last week against the Giants. Lazard had a monster game last week with 103 yards and a score against the G-men, with a second week in a row of over 55% of the offensive snaps. Owners looking for a sneaky deep flex option may want to consider the lizard king.

WAS FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.11
WAS FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.11
WAS FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.13
WAS FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.9

Running Game Thoughts: Aaron Jones is one of the most frustrating players this season when it comes to predicting fantasy production. The second-year back from UTEP scored four rushing touchdowns against the Cowboys in Week 4, only to follow up with six fantasy points at home against a Lions defense that has been one of the worst in limiting fantasy production for running backs all year.

Jones has four games of over 21 fantasy points, including three of 27 fantasy points or more sandwiched between four games of fewer than four fantasy points. He either comes through with a monster game or burns you with almost zero production.

It was not a surprise to see him post 13/38/0 against the 49ers two weeks ago, but his 11/18/0 line last week against the Giants was shocking. Washington ranks 11th in fantasy points allowed to running backs, making this matchup a nice one to target for Jones and the Packers run game. But Washington is just as bad against the pass, which could make this another Aaron Rodgers to Davante Adams game.

With 14 total touchdowns on the year, you cannot bench Jones when he is playing at home to a team like the Redskins. But as I pointed out in this review, he has not always taken advantage of excellent matchups in the past and could burn you again this week.

Value Meter:
QB1: Aaron Rodgers (Elite)
RB1; Aaron Jones (Low-End)
RB3: Jamaal Williams (Low-End)
WR1: Davante Adams (Elite)
WR3: Allen Lazard (Low-End)
TE2: Jimmy Graham (High-End)

Prediction: Green Bay 34, Washington 10 ^ Top

Broncos @ Texans - (Green)
Line: HOU -9.0
Total: 42.0

Passing Game Thoughts: Denver started its third different quarterback of 2019 this past Sunday, turning the keys over to second-round pick Drew Lock, who was activated off of IR earlier in the week. Lock started quickly, firing a pair of early TDs to Courtland Sutton before switching into game manager mode. His final line was modest at best, going 18-for-28 with 134 yards, two TDs and a pick. Lock also drew a late, highly debatable pass interference call that led to the win. It was a solid debut, but Lock still looks to be miles from fantasy relevance.

For a short while you could've made a case for Noah Fant to join Sutton as a possible fantasy starter, but that ship has sailed for now. Last week, Sutton caught four passes for 74 yards and two scores. The rest of the team gained 60 yards on 14 receptions as Lock tossed a series of check downs and screen passes -- Fant's contribution was a five-yard grab. Heading into Week 14, I could see Sutton as a WR2, and that's it.

Houston still sits near the bottom of the NFL in passing yardage allowed (262.9 per game/28th), but they've looked better recently. Getting Vernon Hargreaves off waivers seems to have helped stabilize things, and they locked down Jacoby Brissett and Tom Brady in successive weeks; don't be fooled by Brady's final numbers, he did little when the outcome was in doubt.

HOU FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.5
HOU FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.8
HOU FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.12
HOU FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.20

Running Game Thoughts: What began as a pretty even split between Phillip Lindsay and Royce Freeman has turned into a clear starter/backup dynamic. Lindsay turned his 20 touches into 62 yards against the Chargers last week, while Freeman had nine touches for 24 yards. While I'm sure the Broncos will try to pound the ball, I don't think Freeman offers enough upside to play him, even as a flex. As for Lindsay, he's a low-end RB2 against the NFL's 19th-ranked run defense.

Value Meter:
RB2: Phillip Lindsay
WR2: Courtland Sutton
Bench: Drew Lock, Royce Freeman, Noah Fant

Passing Game Thoughts: Facing the NFL's top defense last Sunday night, Deshaun Watson was equal to the challenge, passing for 234 yards, three touchdowns and no picks against the Patriots. It was just more evidence of how much things open up for the Texans passing game when Will Fuller is active. Even when he isn't getting the ball, his deep speed creates space for everyone else to operate. With a full complement of receivers at his disposal, Watson is once again a solid QB1.

Despite Stephen Gilmore often shadowing him in coverage, DeAndre Hopkins led the team in receptions (five) and receiving yards (64). The touchdowns went elsewhere, however, with Kenny Stills (3-61-1), Duke Johnson (5-54-1) and Darren Fells (2-23-1) finding pay dirt against New England. Fuller, meanwhile, was targeted just twice, catching one for eight yards. It was a disappointing follow up for Fuller, who'd tallied 140 yards in his return, but he still offers WR3 value to Hopkins' WR1.

Although they may not carry the cache of a Bill Belichick-led unit, Denver's defense is no joke, sitting fifth in the NFL against the pass (210.6 yards allowed per game). The loss of Derek Wolfe (elbow) is a blow to the pass rush, especially if Von Miller (knee) is unable to return from a knee injury after sitting out last Sunday. Chris Harris is healthy, though, and he'll present a tough matchup for Hopkins and/or Fuller.
DEN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.28
DEN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.19
DEN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.25
DEN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.19

Running Game Thoughts: Carlos Hyde (10 carries, 17 yards) endured his worst game in a Texans uniform in prime time. At the same time, Johnson (9-36-0) continued to look more and more effective as Bill O'Brien figures out ways to better utilize him. Hyde is still the primary runner, but Johnson continues to make things happen whenever he gets the ball. I'd favor Hyde slightly ahead of Johnson this week against a Denver D that has surrendered 113.7 rushing yards per game (20th).

Value Meter:
QB1: Deshaun Watson
RB3: Carlos Hyde
RB3: Duke Johnson (low-end)
WR1: DeAndre Hopkins
WR3: Will Fuller
Bench: Kenny Stills

Prediction: Texans 24, Broncos 16 ^ Top

Lions @ Vikings - (Swanson)
Line: MIN -13.0
Total: 43.5

Passing Game Thoughts: Rookie David Blough provided one of the most impressive performances of the year with 280 yards and two touchdowns against the Bears on Thanksgiving Day. The undrafted rookie from Purdue made a last-minute start for the Lions with Jeff Driskel suffering a hamstring strain at practice on the Monday leading up to the game.

The unknowns surrounding Blough and how well he would do in his debut brought massive question marks to the skill position players for Detroit, especially Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones.

Blough put those concerns to rest as both Golladay and Jones scored receiving touchdowns against the Bears, with Golladay trailing only DeVante Parker in fantasy points on the week with 4/158/1.

There may be a bit of regression with a whole week of preparation for Mike Zimmer to study film on Blough, but one thing we know for sure is the skill position players for Detroit are still in play and can always be difference makers.

The Vikings defense that has been dominant for so many years under Zimmer is no longer great. Minnesota ranks 19th in fantasy points to quarterbacks with a whopping 21 passing touchdowns allowed in 12 games. By comparison, that is the same number of passing touchdowns allowed by the 49ers and Bills combined.

Perhaps even more shocking is how bad the Vikings have been against wide receivers. Xavier Rhodes has been a turnstile for fantasy production, and five wide receivers in the past seven weeks have topped 100 receiving yards.

Look for the Lions to use a pass-heavy approach against the Vikings for a few reasons. First, the Vikings have struggled against the pass far more than against the run. And second, the game script in this matchup could be a big early lead for Minnesota with the Lions chasing points in the second half.

MIN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.19
MIN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.23
MIN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.5
MIN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.25

Running Game Thoughts: Bo Scarbrough continues to be the lead running back on first and second down for the Lions with 83 yards on 21 carries against Chicago. He now has 236 yards on 53 carries over the past three games, with one rushing touchdown and a 4.5 yard per carry average. Not amazing, but solid production on early downs for head coach Matt Patricia.

J.D. McKissic is the passing down running back of choice and could get more action than normal based on the matchup. If the Lions are down early and are forced to pass more than they would like, McKissic will be the guy in on those downs and should garner some flex appeal in deeper PPR formats.
I also like McKissic based on the assumption the Zimmer will utilize far more blitzes than the Bears did last week to put pressure on the rookie. One way to combat that pressure is with screen passes and quick dump-offs out of the backfield.

Value Meter:
QB2: David Blough (High-End)
RB3: Bo Scarbrough (High-End)
WR2: Kenny Golladay (High-End)
WR3: Marvin Jones (Low-End)
TE2: Jesse James (Low-End)

Passing Game Thoughts: Kirk Cousins became the only player in NFL history to lose all eight of his Monday Night Football games after falling to the Seahawks 30-37 at the Link on Monday.

Despite completing just 57% of his passes for 276 yards and two touchdowns, Cousins continues to be a viable fantasy option in one-quarterback leagues. His 254.6 fantasy points rank him tied with Tom Brady for the 10th most in fantasy football, ahead of Carson Wentz, Philip Rivers, and Jared Goff, three quarterbacks who had a higher ADP in drafts this summer.

Cousins has at least two passing touchdowns in each of his last four games, with just four total interceptions on the year. In games against bad teams like the Lions, Cousins has fared quite well, with an average of 320 yards and three touchdowns against the Giants, Eagles, and Lions from Weeks 6 through 9.

With four passing touchdowns and 338 passing yards against Detroit when the two teams faced off in Detroit Week7, Cousins finished as the No.4 ranked quarterback that week. He could be in line for a similar monster game, especially if Adam Thielen can finally return to the field after missing multiple games with a hamstring injury.

Stefon Diggs scorched the Lions for 143 yards and seven catches on eight targets Week 7 and should be in for a big game once again this week.

You also have to love playing Kyle Rudolph this week against a Lions team that gives up the ninth-most points to opposing tight ends. No tight end has averaged more points in the last five games the Rudolph, so staying in the flames again this week is a must.

DET FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.8
DET FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.3
DET FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.10
DET FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.8

Running Game Thoughts: Dalvin Cook suffered a shoulder injury against the Seahawks. Cook has also claimed that he first suffered the injury against the Broncos the previous week, and he aggravated it again on MNF.

Cook owners will be in for a massive dilemma on Sunday if he is active, as it is possible that the Vikings will limit his carries with Alexander Mattison. It is also possible that Cook could aggravate the injury again and sit most of the game, like what happened the James Conner a few weeks ago.

The timing of the injury could not be worse for Cook owners. Keep a close eye in practice reports as we get closer to Sunday. Hopefully, many of the Cook owners who read this article were smart and added Mattison as a handcuff earlier in the season.

Value Meter:
QB1: Kirk Cousins (Low-End)
RB1: Dalvin Cook/Alexander Mattison (High-End)
WR1: Stefon Diggs (Low-End)
WR2: Adam Thielen (Low-End)
TE1: Kyle Rudolph (High-End)

Prediction: Minnesota 30, Detroit 17 ^ Top

49ers @ Saints - (Green)
Line: NO -2.5
Total: 44.0

Passing Game Thoughts: After thumping the Packers in Phase I of their three-week run of facing top teams, the 49ers found the going much tougher in Baltimore, losing for just the second time this season. Jimmy Garoppolo was decent, completing 15 of 21 passes for 165 yards and a touchdown in tough conditions, but he hasn't ascended the way some thought he would. In two games against Arizona this season, Jimmy G passed for 741 yards and 8 TDs; in his other 10, he's averaged 215.5 passing yards and 1.3 TDs per game. Those simply aren't QB1 numbers.

Despite being shut down by the Ravens, George Kittle remains one of the game's elite fantasy tight ends, catching six or more passes in six of his previous seven matchups. He'll doubtless be a focal point for New Orleans' defense, but he's a must-start. There's far less transparency at receiver. Emmanuel Sanders scored in his first two games after being acquired from Denver, but he has slowed considerably in the wake of a rib injury. Deebo Samuel has made an impact recently, though he caught just two passes in Weeks 12 and 13, leaving a razor-thin margin for error.

New Orleans ranks 17th against the pass this season, yielding 234.9 yards per game. While the 49ers are obviously a run-first team that plays to the Saints' strength, so I think we'll see Kyle Shanahan ask more of Garoppolo. Whether or not he can deliver under pressure from Cam Jordan remains to be seen. Kittle is the only slam dunk here. I'd keep Garoppolo on the bench and consider Sanders and Samuel shaky flex plays against the Saints.

NO FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.10
NO FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.29
NO FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.8
NO FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.24

Running Game Thoughts: For as great as the 49ers' running game is, the ability to slot in different players seemingly every week has made it rough on fantasy owners. On the season, San Francisco has three backs with between 450 and 550 rushing yards: Tevin Coleman (120 carries, 454 yards, 6 TDs), Raheem Mostert (92-539-3) and Matt Breida (109-542-1). I think when all three are healthy, Breida is the top option, followed closely by Coleman and then Mostert.

Breida (ankle) isn't healthy, though, having not played since Nov. 11 due to an ankle injury, and it's unclear if he'll return in Week 14… and if he does return how much he'll play. It just further muddies the waters against the NFL's third-ranked run defense. This is strength on strength here, and with so much uncertainty it's hard to advocate playing any of the Niners' backs as more than a flex.

Value Meter:
RB3: Tevin Coleman
Flex: Matt Breida (if active)
Flex: Emmanuel Sanders
Flex: Deebo Samuel
TE1: George Kittle
Bench: Jimmy Garoppolo, Raheem Mostert

Passing Game Thoughts: New Orleans hasn't been overly impressive of late, eking out a win over Carolina in Week 12 and leaning on its defense and special teams Thanksgiving night to topple the Falcons. Drew Brees completed 18 passes for a 184 yards, his lowest in a full game, and one TD -- it marked the first time in his six starts that he threw for fewer than 225 yards (I'm not counting an injury-shortened Week 2). He'll have his work cut out for him against the Niners.

Michael Thomas has been nearly bulletproof this season, having entered last Thursday with five straight games of 100-plus yards receiving and seven for the year. He tallied a season-low 48 yards on six grabs against the Falcons, but the Saints will be counting on him to live up his unguardable moniker. That task may be a bit easier with Richard Sherman (knee) dealing with a sprained knee; his status for Sunday is up in the air. No matter who takes the field, though, Thomas is a must-start WR1.

As usual, Alvin Kamara (4-23-0 in Week 13) and Jared Cook (3-85-0) are the other notable options in the passing game. The two of them, along with Thomas, accounted for 22 of Brees' 30 targets against the Falcons. Cook led the team in receiving yardage but definitely left some plays on the field, including dropping a sure touchdown. He's a low-end TE1 against San Francisco's top-ranked pass defense (134.2 yards allowed per game). As for Brees, I'd be tempted to leave him out of my starting lineup if I had a solid second choice as the 49ers' pass rush could be death on a stationary target.

SF FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.31
SF FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.30
SF FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.31
SF FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.31

Running Game Thoughts: I keep thinking Sean Payton is eventually going to find a sweet spot with the usage between Kamara and Latavius Murray, but it doesn't look like it's going to happen. Kamara carried 11 times for 61 yards against the Falcons last week while Murray got four rushes for two. With the 49ers down at 22nd in run defense (116.7 yards per game) I'd expect Payton to feature Kamara extensively this week. I still think it makes sense to pound away with Murray as well, but given that the team has shown no inclination to do that I'd keep him out of my lineup.

Value Meter:
QB2: Drew Brees
RB1: Alvin Kamara
WR1: Michael Thomas
TE1: Jared Cook
Bench: Latavius Murray

Prediction: Saints 24, 49ers 20 ^ Top

Dolphins at Jets - (Katz)
Line: NYJ -5.5
Total: 45.0

Passing Game Thoughts: Ryan Fitzpatrick continues to impress. He’s posted back to back QB1 finishes and now gets a Jets defense he lit up for 288 yards and three touchdowns in Week 9. Fitzpatrick has somehow managed to make DeVante Parker the first ever first round pick fifth year wide receiver breakout. Parker was the overall WR1 last week as he extended his double digit streak to nine games. The Jets are a pass funnel defense that struggles mightily against wide receivers making Parker a must start. The Dolphins don’t really have a WR2. It’s technically Allen Hurns, but you are not even considering him. TE Mike Gesicki is next up in the passing game. The Jets allow just 8.0 fantasy points per game to tight ends, but Gesicki has been the overall TE3 and TE5 the past two weeks. I would view him more as their WR2 than tight end and consider him a strong streaming option.

NYJ FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.18
NYJ FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.25
NYJ FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.9
NYJ FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.29

Running Game Thoughts: With Kalen Ballage done for the season, the Dolphins can no longer force feed their least talented player. That leaves Patrick Laird and Myles Gaskin to form some sort of committee. Laird appeared to have the upper hand last week as he played 58.3% of the snaps and saw five targets. Laird can contribute in all facets of the game. Jets’ opponents target running backs 22.25% of the time so Laird actually has somewhat of a floor. With that being said, he is a committee back on the Dolphins so we can only get so excited. Gaskin should be rostered, but he cannot be started.

Value Meter:
QB2: Ryan Fitzpatrick (high end)
WR2: DeVante Parker (high end)
TE1: Mike Gesicki (low end)
Flex: Patrick Laird
Bench: Myles Gaskin, Allen Hurns

Passing Game Thoughts: Just when you think good Sam Darnold might be here to stay, bad Sam Darnold rears his ugly head. This may just be who Darnold is. Either way, the matchup this week couldn’t be better, but that was true the first time these teams faced where Darnold could only muster an overall QB21 finish. We know the matchup is great so it comes down to whether you think you can trust Darnold.

For three weeks, it looked like we could trust Jamison Crowder. Then he posted a total of 6.4 points against the Raiders and Bengals combined. The Dolphins allow 13.1 fantasy points per game to the slot. Crowder is once again setup to smash. TE Ryan Griffin ran a season high 35 routes last week and saw seven targets. He caught six passes for 50 yards against the Dolphins in Week 9. Robby Anderson has come on strong recently with consecutive WR2 finishes. He flopped against the Dolphins in the first go round, but comes with touchdown upside against a defense that gives up the most touchdowns to wide receivers.

MIA FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.4
MIA FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.4
MIA FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.3
MIA FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.14

Running Game Thoughts: Le’Veon Bell flopped in a dream matchup against the Bengals last week. It’s hard to imagine that happening again. Bell was the RB9 against the Dolphins the first time around and fantasy owners can expect similar production this week. Bell caught eight passes in that first game, but Dolphins’ opponents target the running back just 17.14% of the time, making that first performance somewhat of an outlier. Either way, Bell is a no question starter against a defense allowing 143.5 rushing yards per game.

Value Meter:
QB1: Sam Darnold (low end)
RB1: Le’Veon Bell (low end)
WR3: Jamison Crowder
TE1: Ryan Griffin (low end)
Bench: Demaryius Thomas

Prediction: Jets 30, Dolphins 20 ^ Top

Colts @ Buccaneers - (Green)
Line: TB -3.0
Total: 47.5

Passing Game Thoughts: Indy's once-promising season has begun circling the drain, and Jacoby Brissett's play has followed suit. After passing for 16 TDs in his first six games, the NC State alum has thrown for just two over his last four-plus matchups. He did throw for 319 yards last Sunday, marking the third time he's topped the 300-yard mark, but it was largely an empty gesture as it accompanied multiple INTs for the first time all year.

A distinct lack of weapons is also an ongoing issue. Eric Ebron (ankle) is done for the year, and T.Y. Hilton (calf) suffered a setback with his calf before last week's game and it's unclear when/if he'll return. Making things even worse, Chester Rogers (knee) was lost last week to a knee injury, and Devin Funchess (collarbone) won't return from IR. That leaves Zach Pascal, who had seven catches for 109 yards last week, and Jack Doyle (6-73-1) to hold down the fort, though the Colts are hopeful Parris Campbell (hand) will return from injury in Week 14.

Only Arizona has allowed more passing yards per game this season than the Bucs, who have surrendered 281.8 per game. The best hope for Tampa's maligned secondary is the presence of Shaq Barrett, who has 14.5 sacks on the year. If he can heat up Brissett it should help cover up some deficiencies on the backend. I don't particularly like anyone in Indy's passing attack, but Pascal could hold low-end WR3 value and Doyle has TE1 potential with a positive matchup.

TB FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.2
TB FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.32
TB FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.1
TB FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.2

Running Game Thoughts: Reinforcements may be en route in the backfield as Marlon Mack (hand) eyes a return after breaking his hand on Nov. 17. If Mack is back he should be a full go; prior to injury, Mack averaged 86.2 rushing yards per game and would make a solid RB2. Indy looked to have found something in Jonathan Williams, who ran for 220 yards in Weeks 11 and 12, but he never got going and watched Jordan Wilkins step in this past weekend. There's zero clarity if Mack is inactive, but Wilkins seems the likeliest bet to deliver some return on investment.

Then again, the Bucs don't allow running backs in general to do much damage against them, sitting second in the NFL with 76.2 yards per game allowed in 2019. No matter who's in/out this Sunday, playing a Colts back carries some risk.

Value Meter:
QB2: Jacoby Brissett
RB2: Marlon Mack (if healthy)
Flex: Jordan Wilkins (if Mack is inactive)
WR3/Flex: Zach Pascal
TE1: Jack Doyle
Bench: T.Y. Hilton (calf), Parris Campbell (hand), Nyheim Hines, Jonathan Williams

Passing Game Thoughts: For the first time this season, Jameis Winston didn't pass for a touchdown last Sunday, throwing for 268 yards on 21 completions. He also didn't throw an interception for the fourth time in 2019. It was an odd game that saw the team jump out to a 25-0 lead on the strength of two rushing TDs and a fumble return for a score, and that changed the play calling. A desperate Colts team will try to harass Winston into rediscovering his turnover-prone ways, but I'd keep him as a low-end QB1 this week.

Even stranger than Winston not throwing a TD was the fact that Breshad Perriman (5-87-0) and O.J. Howard (5-61-0) were the team's top receivers in Week 13, while Mike Evans (4-53-0) and Chris Godwin (4-50-0) having forgettable performances. Don't read anything into it. The game situation dictated a lot of it, and Evans was still targeted 11 times against the Jags. Don't be tempted by Howard, either, as he has teased fantasy owners a couple of times this year. It's still Evans and Godwin as WR1s, and stay away from everyone else.

Indy sits 12th against the pass, allowing 226.9 yards per game, and they did a nice job against Ryan Tannehill (182 yards, 2 TDs) last week, including sacking him six times. They have the players to get after Winston and put pressure on his decision making. Given their own deficiencies offensively, the Colts will be hunting for takeaways.

IND FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.21
IND FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.28
IND FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.14
IND FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.18

Running Game Thoughts: About that whole Ronald Jones is the starter thing... yeah, obviously that was a ceremonial proclamation by Bruce Arians, as last Sunday Jones carried all of six times (for eight yards) while Peyton Barber logged 17 carries, 44 yards and both offensive TDs. After a dozen games there's still no clarity here; I do believe that Jones is more talented and thus a better gamble each week, but to be clear he is exactly that, a gamble. They're probably both best suited as flex options.

As for the Colts D, they've held their opponents to 101.8 yards rushing per game this season, which is ninth-best in the NFL. They couldn't stop Derrick Henry last week, but no one has recently, and neither Jones nor Barber is on Henry's level.

Value Meter:
QB1: Jameis Winston
RB3/Flex: Ronald Jones
Flex: Peyton Barber
WR1: Mike Evans
WR1: Chris Godwin
Bench: O.J. Howard

Prediction: Buccaneers 24, Colts 20 ^ Top

Chargers @ Jaguars - (Green)
Line: LAC -3.0
Total: 43.0

Passing Game Thoughts: Nobody finds more creative ways to lose football games than the Chargers, who have suffered ALL EIGHT of their defeats by seven points or less. The culprit in many has been the shaky play of Philip Rivers, and he wasn't great last week, either: 265 passing yards, 2 TDs and an INT. He managed to lead them to a tying score with less than 20 seconds left, but they still lost in regulation. The once-steady Rivers has become a turnover machine this season, and the team could look to feature the run game against the Jags in Week 14.

LA features dynamic players in the passing game: Keenan Allen (6-68-1 last week), Hunter Henry (2-10-0), Mike Williams (5-117-0) and Austin Ekeler (4-51-1). It hasn't been a great season for Allen, who last topped 100 yards in Week 3, but he's been better recently, scoring in each of the last two games. That's something Williams can't relate to. After logging 10 TDs last year, Williams has been inexplicably shut out in 2019, trailing only Robert Woods for most yards without a TD (778). Allen is a midrange WR2, while Williams is a fringe WR3/Flex.

Despite his poor showing last week, Henry might be the most reliable option from a fantasy perspective, returning TE1 value most weeks. Ekeler, too, could be the top pass-catching back this side of Christian McCaffrey. While he doesn't get the number of touches that Melvin Gordon does, Ekeler is nearly on par with him as an RB2, especially in PPR formats. While J-Ville is better against the pass (223.8 yards per game; 11th), the Chargers have too much talent to shy away from airing it out.

JAC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.15
JAC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.6
JAC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.22
JAC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.17

Running Game Thoughts: It took a couple of weeks after he ended his holdout, but Gordon has emerged as the clear No. 1 rushing option for the Bolts. Over his last four games, the former Badger has averaged 110.5 total yards and 0.75 TDs per. Ekeler has done little on the ground recently, failing to crack 25 rushing yards in three straight. On the other side, the Jaguars had been largely abysmal against the run before last week, currently sitting 28th in the NFL at 136.6 yards allowed per contest. Make sure you find room for Gordon in your lineup.

Value Meter:
RB2: Melvin Gordon
RB2: Austin Ekeler
WR2: Keenan Allen
WR3/Flex: Mike Williams
TE1: Hunter Henry
Bench: Philip Rivers

Passing Game Thoughts: Remember when all the Jaguars needed to contend was a decent QB? And then that decent QB was gonna be Nick Foles? Oops. After just three games the team pulled the plug on Foles and inserted Gardner Minshew back into the starting lineup, theoretically for the rest of 2019. Minshew was mostly ineffective last week in relief of Foles, but he played some nice ball earlier in the season. Considering the Chargers have already lost to Drew Lock and Devlin Hodges, it wouldn't be a shock to see Minshew play well in his return.

One thing Minshew and Foles have in common is D.J. Chark as the receiver of choice. He's been quiet the last two weeks, but for the season he's averaging better than 70 yards per game and has eight TDs. I've seen him rated as a WR1 in some places, but I'm more comfortable with him as a WR2. After Chark it's Dede Westbrook, who had 60 yards and a TD on five grabs last Sunday. He's more of a flex candidate that could be slotted in as a No. 3 fantasy wideout as needed. Chris Conley has done some good things, too, but he's no more than a desperation play with the others healthy.

Los Angeles got some reinforcements in Week 13 as Derwin James (foot) made his debut and Adrian Phillips (forearm) returned from IR. On the year, the Chargers rank fourth in pass defense (199.3 yards per game), and they owe much of that to the pass rushing tandem of Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram. This should be a test for Minshew, who is better off left on your bench.

LAC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No26.
LAC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.9
LAC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.29
LAC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.21

Running Game Thoughts: While LA isn't nearly as stout against the run (109.9 yards per game allowed; 18th), I'd expect them to stack the box and dare Minshew to beat them instead of allowing bowling ball Leonard Fournette (91 total yards last week) to run over them. It's possible, though, that the Jags mimic what Pittsburgh did with Hodges and do lots of short throws to their back(s) in the flat. However the Jags get Fournette the ball, I like him as an RB1 for Week 14.

RB1: Leonard Fournette
WR2: D.J. Chark
Flex: Dede Westbrook
Bench: Gardner Minshew, Chris Conley

Prediction: Chargers 27, Jaguars 17 ^ Top

Steelers @ Cardinals - (Caron)
Line: PIT -2.5
Total: 43.0

Passing Game Thoughts: In a week where the Steelers were using their third starting quarterback of the season, their third starting running back and were without their top wide receiver, it was hard to believe that anything positive would happen, but Pittsburgh was able to keep their playoff hopes alive with a big division win over the Browns in Week 13. Perhaps not all hope is lost for this offense to produce some quality fantasy numbers down the stretch.

While quarterback Devlin Hodges is too inexperienced and hasn’t produced enough to be trusted as a QB1 for fantasy, he does have the best possible matchup on paper this week as he and the Steelers head on the road to face the Cardinals’ league-worst fantasy defense against opposing quarterbacks. The Cardinals have already given up 31 passing touchdowns (most in the league) and nearly 3,900 passing yards (also most in the league) this season. Not a single opposing starting quarterback has been held to fewer than 16 fantasy points in a start against the Arizona this season. Hodges might not be a QB1, but he’s absolutely a viable QB2 due to the matchup and the hope that wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster could be back on the field this week.

Smith-Schuster continues to battle a knee injury that has held him out of each of the past two Steelers games but he’d immediately become a WR2 again if he’s able to get back into the lineup. If he’s not out there, though, the Steelers will again turn to the duo of Diontae Johnson and James Washington.

While Johnson was the better player earlier this season, he’s fallen behind in recent weeks as he’s been held out of the end zone in five straight contests. He’s produced just 31.5 yards per game over his past eight contests, making him someone who should probably be on your bench this week, even in what is a great on-paper matchup.

Washington is a player who should absolutely be in the discussion for a Flex starter at this point, however. He started off slow this season, but Washington has really broken out over his past five games, averaging 83.4 yards per game over that stretch while scoring a total of three touchdowns. He’s not seeing a huge target volume, but he’s been targeted at least four times in seven straight games, making him Pittsburgh’s top receiving weapon over that stretch.

The under-the-radar start of the week at tight end both from a seasonal and DFS standpoint has to be tight end Vance McDonald. McDonald has been a disappointment for those who had hoped he’d become this season’s breakout fantasy tight end, but this week he gets an unbelievably juicy matchup against an Arizona defense that has been comically bad against opposing tight ends this season. The Cardinals have given up by far the most fantasy points to tight ends in 2019, including a ridiculous 13 touchdowns to the position - five more than any other team. Not only that, but they’ve given up four touchdowns to the position over their past three games alone, to the likes of Tyler Higbee, Ross Dwelley and O.J. Howard. McDonald can pretty much be written off as a fantasy asset in any other matchup, but this one is just too good to look past. If you’re not rostering an elite TE already, look at McDonald to be your plug-and-play option here in Week 14.

ARI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.1
ARI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.10
ARI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.6
ARI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.1

Running Game Thoughts: The Pittsburgh running game has mostly been a major disappointment this season and usual starter James Conner has been ruled out. A shoulder injury has kept him out in two straight weeks. It appears as though the Steelers have made the commitment to give Benny Snell the majority of the touches out of the backfield. From a fantasy standpoint, this is probably the best situation we can hope for as Snell would likely see at least 15 touches against a middle-of-the-road-at-best Arizona run defense. The Cardinals got trampled this past week by Todd Gurley for nearly 100 rushing yards and there’s a strong likelihood that Snell would see some goal line touches as the Cardinals defense has been terrible all season. Conner missing his third straight game would make Snell a low-end RB2 option.

Jaylen Samuels continues to be more of a jack-of-all-trades/master-of-none type player who simply isn’t seeing enough touches to be viable most weeks from a fantasy standpoint. He’s the best pass catcher of the bunch and has caught at least two passes in all but his upside is very limited and he should be on your bench or on waivers.

Value Meter:
QB2: Devlin Hodges
RB2: Benny Snell
WR2: JuJu Smith-Schuster
TE1: Vance McDonald (low end)
Flex: James Washington
Bench: Jaylen Samuels, Diontae Johnson, Tevin Jones

Passing Game Thoughts: Kyler Murray had really been putting together a strong second half of his rookie season prior to his disappointing performance against the struggling Rams this past weekend. Even in a game where threw failed to throw for 200 yards or a single touchdown pass, however, Murray wasn’t a complete disaster from a fantasy standpoint as he got into the end zone as a runner, again proving the point that rushing quarterbacks are significantly better floor plays than their pocket-passing counterparts. Murray is now second in the league behind only Lamar Jackson (although admittedly far behind him) in rushing yardage from the quarterback position, which has helped make him a solid QB1 this season.

He doesn’t have a particularly great matchup this week, however, as he faces a Pittsburgh secondary that has been borderline elite since the acquisition of Minkah Fitzpatrick. They’ve given up just two 200-yard passers since Week 3 and they’ve only given up four passing touchdowns over their past four games. Still, Murray remains a borderline QB1 due to his rushing floor. He’s exceeded 15 fantasy points in all but three games this season while reaching at least 20 points in six games.

Wide receiver Christian Kirk has been hit or miss lately, having been held to fewer than 11 PPR fantasy points in three of his past four games along with a massive 37.8 point game mixed in. It’s difficult to be excited about him in this difficult matchup but the positive is that Kirk is still seeing a very high target share. He’s been targeted at least five times in every game he’s played this season, including double-digit targets in four of his nine starts. That type of volume is very difficult to come across in today’s NFL and it proves that his upside for another huge game is still there. Feel free to put him in your lineup as a low-end WR2.

The only other pass catching weapon who’s producing with any sort of consistency in this offense continues to be veteran Larry Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald has caught at least four passes in each of his past four games and while his upside has been pretty much nonexistent, he’s still producing viable PPR Flex numbers for those who are in deep leagues and are just looking for a decently high floor.

PIT FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.22
PIT FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.27
PIT FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.17
PIT FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.11

Running Game Thoughts: A split backfield behind a terrible offense line is just not conducive to fantasy production but that seems to be what we’re getting in Arizona. Both David Johnson and Chase Edmonds returned to the active roster this past week and while Edmonds didn’t play a snap, it appears as though this backfield might be headed for at least a two-headed, if not three-headed approach.

Kenyan Drake is now the front-runner to lead the team in touches down the stretch but even he is far from a sure thing, especially if Johnson or Edmonds gets back to near full speed in practice.

The Steelers have given up the sixth-fewest fantasy points to opposing running backs this season so this isn’t a good spot to trust any of these players. Even if it was a good matchup, however, this rushing offense simply hasn’t been good enough to produce usable fantasy numbers most weeks even in good matchups, so do your best to avoid the situation entirely if you can.

Value Meter:
QB1: Kyler Murray
WR2: Christian Kirk
Flex: Kenyan Drake, Larry Fitzgerald
Bench: Chase Edmonds, KeeSean Johnson, Andy Isabella, Charles Clay

Prediction: Steelers 24, Cardinals 20 ^ Top

Titans @ Raiders - (Caron)
Line: TEN -2.5
Total: 47.0

Passing Game Thoughts: The Titans offense has been a boring, uninventive, fantasy production sieve for the better part of the past handful of years. Whether it’s been coaching, personal, situation or a combination of many factors, the reality is that other than a few short stretches here and there, we really haven’t seen much to be excited about from this offense from a fantasy standpoint.

That has all changed over the past six weeks, however, since veteran took over as the starting quarterback in Tennessee. Tannehill has quietly been one of the league’s best fantasy players at the quarterback position since getting the job, having scored multiple touchdowns in every game he’s started. Advanced analytics are showing that this recent surge might actually be legitimate and not some sort of fluke.

Despite this impressive run, however, the Titans have still not seen consistent production from any of their pass catching weapons. The most reliable option continues to be rookie wide receiver A.J. Brown, who leads the team in targets, receiving yards and touchdowns this season, however, he's still only seeing an average of just over five targets per game since Tannehill took over, which is only a slight uptick from what he saw with Marcus Mariota under center. While he’s been a bit more productive with those targets than he was with Mariota, that type of volume is just not enough to trust as anything other than a deep Flex option in PPR formats.

Things aren’t any better for fellow wide receivers Corey Davis and Adam Humphries or tight end Jonnu Smith, either. All three players have had moments of fantasy production this season, but none of them are reliable enough to be in your starting lineup in these always important late-season fantasy games.

Tannehill will face an Oakland defense that has been an absolute disaster in stopping opposing passing games this season. The Raiders have given up the third-most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks and they’ve held just two quarterbacks - Cincinnati's Ryan Finley and Minnesota’s Kirk Cousins - to fewer than 17 fantasy points in a game this season, while having conceded six different 25-plus fantasy point days to the position. While they did hold Patrick Mahomes to just 175 yards and one passing touchdown (along with a rushing touchdown) this past week, it’s also worth noting that the Chiefs were up multiple scores for almost the entire game and were not really in a situation where they needed to risk anything by passing the ball.

It sounds crazy to say, but Tannehill is a fantasy QB1 this week and should probably be in most lineups for teams that don’t already have the luxury of an elite quarterback.

OAK FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.3
OAK FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.12
OAK FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.11
OAK FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.5

Running Game Thoughts: It shouldn’t be all that surprising to find out that with an improved passing game, the Titans running game has also seen a nice jump in production since Tannehill took over behind center. In the six games that Tannehill has started, Titans running back Derrick Henry has averaged over 120 rushing yards per game while scoring a total of seven touchdowns. He’s also ripped off three straight huge games of 149, 159 and 188 rushing yards.

He’s still not producing much as a pass catcher, but Henry is an absolutely elite fantasy option right now due to the Titans’ willingness to feed him carries all game long. With the Raiders reeling after back-to-back losses, Henry might just be one of the absolute best plays in all of fantasy football this week. Oakland has only given up two 100-yard rushers so far this season, but there’s a pretty fair chance that they give up their third this week.

Value Meter:
QB1: Ryan Tannehill
RB1: Derrick Henry (high-end)
Flex: A.J. Brown
Bench: Dion Lewis, Adam Humphries, Corey Davis, Jonnu Smith

Passing Game Thoughts: Derek Carr has long been a low-end QB2 fantasy option who can typically support only one, maybe two viable fantasy options at a time and that still hasn’t changed. With only one game of 20 or more fantasy points so far this season, Carr just lacks the upside to be anything other than a floor play as a low-end QB2. That’s not particularly interesting from a fantasy standpoint, so let’s move on to his pass catching weapons.

At this point, Tyrell Williams has become a fantasy afterthought. Following an impressive start to the season wherein he scored a touchdown in each of his first five starts, Williams has since failed to get into the end zone a single time while producing an average of just 2.6 receptions per game and 36.4 yards per game. In short, he’s been completely useless from a fantasy standpoint - and he’s still by far the team’s best weapon out wide. That should go to show just how bad this situation is and Williams shouldn’t be in your lineup as anything more than a low-end WR3 in standard-scoring leagues as a touchdown-or-bust option.

The only player we should continue to care about in this passing game is tight end Darren Waller. Following his 100-yard performance in Week 13, his third such performance this season, Waller is now the No. 3-scoring tight end in standard scoring fantasy football this season. He’s doing so while having only scored three total touchdowns this season, as well, so if anything he’s under-performed in one of the key areas for fantasy production, but he’s still an elite producer at an otherwise brutal position. The Titans have mostly been solid against opposing wide receivers, but one area where they’ve struggled is defending tight ends. They’ve given up six touchdowns to the position on the year along and they’ve given up 70-plus receiving yard days to four different tight ends over their past nine games. Waller makes for a great start again this week.

TEN FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.17
TEN FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.13
TEN FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.16
TEN FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.6

Running Game Thoughts: It’s hard to pull much positive information out of the Raiders’ discouraging blowout loss to the Chiefs this past week, but if you’re looking for a silver lining from a fantasy standpoint, it should be that rookie running back Josh Jacobs was still productive even in a terrible game script. Jacobs still got 17 carries in the loss, which he turned into 104 rushing yards - his fifth 100-yard rushing day of the season - and he’s now reached at least 10 PPR fantasy points in all but three starts this season.

On the flipside, however, it should also be noted that Jacobs has essentially been a ghost in the passing game, even in these past two losses blowout Raiders losses to the Jets and Chiefs. Often times we’ll see that a running back becomes more involved in the passing game when his team is behind multiple scores because opposing defenses will play softer coverage, allowing more underneath passes which are often funneled to running backs who are more reliable with YAC production than most receivers and tight ends. That simply hasn’t happened for Jacobs, however, as he’s caught only one pass over these past two games. It seems to be a trend, too, as he’s only caught 18 total passes on the season which puts him on a pace for 24 catches for the entire season, which would be one of, if not the fewest total for any “bell cow” running back in the league this season.

Sure, Jacobs’ rushing totals are good enough that he’s been able to sustain borderline RB1 production this season even in PPR formats, but his lack of pass catching prowess has really limited his upside as a fantasy producer. Unless he scores a touchdown, he’s often outside the RB1 range and while his floor makes him a quality start still, he’s not particularly exciting as week-winning option.

Value Meter:
QB2: Derek Carr (low end)
RB2: Josh Jacobs (high end)
WR3: Tyrell Williams (low end)
TE1: Darren Waller
Bench: Jalen Richard, DeAndre Washington, Zay Jones, Foster Moreau

Prediction: Titans 27, Raiders 20 ^ Top

Chiefs at Patriots - (Katz)
Line: NE -3.0
Total: 49.0

Passing Game Thoughts: Patrick Mahomes is still the best quarterback in the NFL. He just hasn’t been a true difference maker in fantasy football. Since Week 4, Mahomes has just one finish higher than QB10. The Patriots are the league’s best pass defense with 20 interceptions against eight touchdowns allowed. Opponents throw for just 163.5 yards against them. With that being said, Mahomes is still a must start. As we saw when the Patriots played the Ravens, elite offenses can move the ball and the Chiefs qualify as an elite offense.

Tyreek Hill has completely torched the Patriots in the past. He’s also been shut down by them. You are never benching Hill, but he should see a lot of Stephon Gilmore, which is less than ideal. Gilmore is third in fantasy points per target allowed and first in catch rate allowed. He’s a true shutdown corner. If Hill is double teamed, that could open things up for Travis Kelce, who has just one 100 yard receiving game this season. This could be a big Kelce game, especially given the lack of passing game options outside of Hill. Sammy Watkins, Mecole Hardman and Demarcus Robinson could randomly pop a big play, but they’re not legitimate options.

NE FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.32
NE FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.31
NE FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.32
NE FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.27

Running Game Thoughts: Damien Williams is not yet recovered from his rib injury and Darrel Williams strained his hamstring last week. Neither Williams is going to play. That leaves LeSean McCoy to presumably split the work with rookie, Darwin Thompson. Andy Reid seems intent on keeping McCoy fresh so it does not matter who the other back is, McCoy is not seeing more than 40-50% of the snaps. Against the Patriots, you simply cannot start him. Thompson is preferable to McCoy, but I can’t shake this feeling that Spencer Ware is going to get some burn this week. He’s healthy, knows the system and he’s excelled in this offense before. The Chiefs will likely go very pass heavy and teams don’t target the running back particularly often against the Patriots, doing so just 17.72% of the time. I don’t see how you can feel confident with any Chiefs running back.

Value Meter:
QB1: Patrick Mahomes (high end)
WR1: Tyreek Hill (low end)
TE1: Travis Kelce (high end)
Bench: LeSean McCoy, Darwin Thompson, Damien Williams (ribs), Darrel Williams (hamstring), Sammy Watkins, Mecole Hardman

Passing Game Thoughts: Week 6 against the Giants was the last time Brady surpassed 20 fantasy points prior to last week. Brady did much of his work in garbage time last week when it looked like the Texans truly did not care about playing defense since they knew the game was over. Brady should have to throw a bunch against the Chiefs, which is great news for Julian Edelman. Brady’s top receiver has seen double digit targets in seven straight games. Expect that streak to extend to eight.

Mohamed Sanu has become an afterthought, playing just 26.3% of the snaps last week. You can probably drop him. Phillip Dorsett played well ahead of Sanu last week, but has proven to be nothing more than a random touchdown hopeful. Ben Watson and Matt LaCosse are splitting snaps and seldom targeted. They can be safely ignored. When Brady isn’t throwing to Edelman, he will probably be throwing to James White, who had his best game of the season last week. This game projects similar in terms of game script. White’s 80% snap count last week was by far a season high (his previous high was 50%). Don’t expect 80% again, but do expect another number over 50%, especially given how well he played.

KC FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.13
KC FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.2
KC FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.30
KC FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.7

Running Game Thoughts: With White likely to dominate snaps again, Sony Michel and Rex Burkhead are off the table. Since returning from injury, Burkhead hasn’t played more than 35% of the snaps. Throwing out last week’s 3.9% outlier, Burkhead has typically been around 20%. He just cuts into White’s upside more than anything. As for Michel, he’s coming off his fifth straight single digit outing, which marks his eighth of the season. His 19.7% snap rate was a season low. Michel truly has no redeeming qualities. He is a bad runner. He is a bad receiver. He doesn’t have the volume. There is simply no reason to start him. The Chiefs allow the highest percentage of passing yardage to running backs. You can bet that Bill Belichick knows this and will look to exploit it. That means more White and less Michel.

Value Meter:
QB1: Tom Brady (low end)
RB2: James White (mid-range)
WR1: Julian Edelman (low end)
Bench: Mohamed Sanu, Phillip Dorsett, Sony Michel, Ben Watson

Prediction: Patriots 30, Chiefs 27 ^ Top

Seahawks @ Rams - (Caron)
Line: SEA -1.0
Total: 47.0

Passing Game Thoughts: The NFL MVP conversation is really coming down to just a few players and Russell Wilson is absolutely on that list, but it’s worth noting that his fantasy production has really taken a big step back in the second half of the 2019 season. Wilson has been held to fewer than 17 fantasy points in all but one of his past six starts. He mixed in his second 50-yard rushing day of the season during that stretch, but Wilson has now thrown four interceptions over that stretch after starting the season with six straight games without a pick. We shouldn’t be concerned about his sudden increase in interceptions as the number is still very low but it does show us that Wilson is beginning to regress to the league mean a bit more than it appeared he would earlier this season.

The biggest concern that we had about this passing game heading into the season was simply that they wouldn’t pass enough. We’ve now seen Wilson throw the ball 32 or fewer times in six starts. Not surprisingly, he failed to reach even 17 fantasy points in all but one of those games. The one exception came back in Week 5 when the Seahawks hosted the Rams and Wilson completed 17 of 23 passes for 268 yards and four touchdowns, while adding 32 rushing yards. He’ll face that same Rams defense again here in Week 14, but this time they’re coming off of a dominant division win over the Cardinals and the game won’t be played in Seattle. Wilson is still a good enough passer that he has to be considered a mid-level QB1 in this matchup even if he and the Seahawks have been struggling through the air as of late, but there is reason to be a little more skeptical about this matchup given that he’s not likely to repeat the same type of efficiency that we saw from him back in Week 5.

Seattle’s top pass catching weapon, Tyler Lockett, has really been disappointing as of late, having been held to just four total catches over his past three games since his monstrous Week 9 blowup game against the Buccaneers. In fact, he was held without a catch for the first time since 2017 this past week in Seattle’s victory over Minnesota on Monday night. Lockett suffered a shin injury back in Week 10 and it’s beginning to look possible that he might be bothered by that injury enough that it’s keeping him from making plays on the field. He hasn’t been on the injury report, but this sudden drop off in production is certainly concerning. Still, he’s Wilson’s most-trusted go-to weapon and has to be in most lineups here against a bad Rams defense that he scored against back in Week 5.

Rookie D.K. Metcalf continues to turn in a strong rookie season and he has now averaged over 75 receiving yards per game over his past four games. Metcalf also scored against the Rams back in Week 5 and can be considered a WR3 with upside in this matchup.

Tight end Jacob Hollister is now averaging six targets per game since becoming the team’s top tight end option. Wilson loves to throw to his tight ends in the end zone, which gives him plenty of upside on any given week, but his high target share also gives him the nice floor that makes him a quality TE1. Hollister didn’t play in the Week 5 matchup these teams had, but fellow tight ends Will Dissly and Luke Willson combined for 91 receiving yards in that contest, so he’s an even stronger play in this matchup than most.

LAR FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.20
LAR FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.20
LAR FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.19
LAR FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.23

Running Game Thoughts: The Seahawks duo of Chris Carson and Rashaad Penny ran the ball 38 times in their close Week 13 victory over the Vikings while quarterback Russell Wilson attempted just 31 passes. That number alone should show exactly why this running game has such a huge upside on a weekly basis, but it’s also noteworthy that the backfield is absolutely becoming more of a split than it was throughout most of the season.

Carson took 23 of those 38 carries for 102 yards and he’s now seen at least 20 carries in seven of his past nine games. His passing game production has fallen back closer to his 2018 numbers, but 20 carries per game is elite territory in today’s game. Whether or not he has elite skill really isn’t as important as the fact that the Seahawks coaches seem to believe strongly enough in him that they’re willing to feed him a back-breaking numbers of carries almost every single week. That’s been key to Carson’s production this season as he’s only been held below 10 PPR fantasy points once during this nine game stretch.

While Carson is still the lead back, things seem to be getting a lot more competitive with second-year back and former first round NFL Draft pick Rashaad Penny. Penny has now seen 29 carries over his past two games, including out-touching Carson in Seattle’s Week 12 victory over the Eagles. He’s been more productive on a per-touch basis than Carson over these past two games and he also showed some receiving game ability this past week as he caught four passes for 33 yards, including a nice touchdown on a screen pass.

There was some question as to whether or not Penny had overtaken Carson in the Seattle backfield and that appears to not be the case, but it does seem as though we’re going to see more of a 60/40 split going forward.

Carson smashed the Rams for 118 yards on 27 carries when these teams played back in Week 5, so he’s still going to be a high-end RB2 in this game, but keep an eye out for Penny who himself could be Flexed.

Value Meter:
QB1: Russell Wilson
RB2: Chris Carson (high end)
WR2: Tyler Lockett
WR3: D.K. Metcalf
TE1: Jacob Hollister
Flex: Rashaad Penny
Bench: C.J. Prosise, David Moore, Jaron Brown

Passing Game Thoughts: Jared Goff and the Rams passing game had been on an absolutely horrible stretch and was probably on most fantasy benches in Week 13, but we did mention that there was a fair chance of a big bounce-back week for the Rams as they were facing the horrible Cardinals secondary. Goff showed up in a big way, reaching 424 passing yards along with two touchdowns, while wide receiver Robert Woods led all pass catchers for the week with 13 catches for 172 yards. Tyler Higbee and Cooper Kupp both got into the end zone as well, so it was a great game for pretty much everyone in the passing game other than Brandin Cooks.

Unfortunately, we’re at the point with Cooks where we have to stop trusting him in our lineups. Maybe it’s the concussions, maybe it’s coaching, maybe it’s miscommunication with his quarterback - we just don’t know. But what we do know is that Cooks hasn’t produced a double-digit PPR fantasy day since all the way back in Week 4 and he’s been targeted more than four times in a game just once over that stretch. There just aren’t enough balls coming his way for him to do anything from a fantasy standpoint, so this week - against a pretty good Seattle defense against opposing WRs - we’re going to bench Cooks.

The positive thing is that the lack of targets coming Cooks’ way means an increase in looks for wide receivers Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods. Woods is without a touchdown this season but he’s now seen a ridiculous 39 targets over his past three games, which he’s turned into 26 catches for 364 yards. He’s playing at a WR1 level and he’s now seen seven or more targets come his way in all but three games. If he was producing touchdowns at even a league average rate, Woods would be a WR1 for fantasy this season. But since he’s been unlucky in that area, he’s barely a WR2. Still, fantasy owners need to continue to trust that he’s going to see enough targets to give you productive fantasy days even without the touchdowns. And when those touchdowns eventually come, it’ll just be the icing on the cake.

Kupp’s touchdown this past week earned him his first double-digit fantasy day since Week 8, but his targets have been much less consistent than Woods’ as of late. Still, he’s produced a ton of WR1 games this season and remains a major part of the Rams’ passing game, so don’t avoid him now.

Tight end Gerald Everett missed what could’ve been a huge game for him this past week as a knee injury kept him out against the Rams and it’s possible that he’ll again be out here in Week 14. The Seahawks aren’t quite as bad as the Cardinals are against tight ends, but they’re still firmly in the top five worst defenses against the position, so it’ll be interesting to see if he’s able to get on the field. If he is, we’ll rank him as a borderline TE1. If he’s not, however, Tyler Higbee should again be in consideration as a low-end TE1 himself, as he produced nice numbers against the Cardinals this past week and would see increased playing time again if Everett is indeed out.

SEA FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.12
SEA FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.21
SEA FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.21
SEA FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.4

Running Game Thoughts: Todd Gurley continues to mostly be a touchdown-or-bust fantasy option, but the nice thing is that he’s continuing to score on a fairly regular basis. Gurley has not scored nine total touchdowns this season and the Rams seem to be confident in giving him plenty of carries when the game situation calls for it as it did this past week in their blowout win over the Cardinals.

Unfortunately, there appears to be no real interest in getting Gurley the ball in the passing game as he’s caught more than three passes in a game just once this season after being one of the league’s best pass catching backs over the past few seasons. Still, Gurley is producing good enough numbers to be a good RB2 even in what is only a middle-of-the-road matchup against the Seahawks.

Value Meter:
QB2: Jared Goff
RB2: Todd Gurley
WR1: Cooper Kupp
WR2: Robert Woods
TE1: Gerald Everett, Tyler Higbee (if Everett is out)
Bench: Malcolm Brown, Darrell Henderson, Brandin Cooks, Josh Reynolds

Prediction: Seahawks 24, Rams 23 ^ Top

Giants at Eagles - (Katz)
Line: PHI -9.0
Total: 47.0

Passing Game Thoughts: Two words I never thought I’d write again: Eli Manning. The greatest mediocre quarterback of all time is back for a retirement tour. Daniel Jones is dealing with a high ankle sprain that Pat Shurmur described as similar to the one Saquon Barkley had. Barkley missed three games and is also an alien. It is entirely possible that Jones, who has shown enough to be the unquestioned starter in 2020, will be shut down in a lost season. Manning may get the benefit of a fully healthy supporting cast for the first time all season.

The Eagles have allowed 16 touchdowns to wide receivers this season. Sterling Shepard is a strong play here as he has a rapport with Manning and has a proven target floor of at least seven. Darius Slayton has played well and been a usable fantasy asset, but it’s unclear what his role will be with everyone healthy and whether Manning has any interest in throwing to him. He’s an avoid if possible. Evan Engram appears ready to return. He hasn’t played since Week 9. Just 17.17% of passing yards given up by the Eagles have gone to tight ends. We also can’t assume a full complement of snaps for Engram. You are still starting Engram if you have him, but make sure he’s definitely returning as this game is on Monday night and you don’t want to be caught without a replacement. Golden Tate is also working through the concussion protocol. He is expected to be cleared by Monday and will be an excellent checkdown option for a quarterback that can’t throw downfield anymore. Just make sure he’s playing as concussions are notoriously tricky. It is worth nothing that the Eagles allow just 9.0 fantasy points per game to the slot.

PHI FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.16
PHI FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.26
PHI FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.4
PHI FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.22

Running Game Thoughts: Saquon Barkley hasn’t finished higher than RB16 in a month. His 19 carries last week tied his season high. Over the first two weeks with Eli Manning under center, Barkley saw a total of 13 targets. Manning’s presence is likely a boon for Barkley’s passing game usage. The Eagles have only allowed one receiving touchdown to running backs, but opponents target the running back often against them, 23.63% of the time. Barkley will need to get it done with volume as the Eagles allow the fourth fewest rushing yards per game at just 91. Barkley is undoubtedly a bust on the level of 2018 David Johnson, but unlike DJ, there is still hope for a Barkley splash game. I think we may get it this week, which will swing matchups on Monday night.

Value Meter:
RB1: Saquon Barkley (mid-range)
WR3: Sterling Shepard
WR3: Golden Tate (if he plays)
TE1: Evan Engram (mid-range, if he plays)
Bench: Eli Manning, Darius Slayton

Passing Game Thoughts: Carson Wentz is another quarterback that played much worse than the box score indicated. After all, when you lose to the Dolphins, how well could you have actually played? Despite Wentz doing a poor job for the Eagles, he did a great job for fantasy owners. His 22.4 fantasy points were his most since Week 1 and resulted in his highest weekly finish of the season at QB7.

The Giants are a gift to opposing passing games, allowing 22.5 fantasy points per game to quarterbacks. It helped Wentz to get Alshon Jeffery back healthy last week as Jeffery had by far his best game of the season and is setup nicely to excel once again. The Giants allow a laughable 21.5 fantasy points per game to opposing WR1s. Zach Ertz was able to talk his way into playing through a hamstring injury and while the result was lackluster, he played his usual complement of snaps and actually ran the most routes since Week 2. Ertz emerged from the game no worse for wear so if you have him, you’re starting him. It is interesting to note that teams target tight ends against the Giants less than any other team at just 12.76% of the time.

Dallas Goedert is essentially the Eagles’ WR3, but he played just 52.3% of the snaps last week, his second lowest total of the season. This game after three straight games over 80%. The good news is Goedert was targeted seven times. He remains a TE1. Nelson Agholor didn’t practice Thursday. Even if he plays, he is a desperation flex play if you need someone in a good matchup that sees the field, but nothing more.

NYG FPts Allowed vs. QBs: No.6
NYG FPts Allowed vs. RBs: No.18
NYG FPts Allowed vs. WRs: No.2
NYG FPts Allowed vs. TEs: No.28

Running Game Thoughts: Jordan Howard continues to be limited in practice and continues to not play. There is nothing to indicate this week will be any different and with the game on Monday night, Howard simply isn’t good enough to roll the dice on him getting cleared for contact. Miles Sanders is averaging a 90% snap share since Howard went down. The Giants have yet to allow a touchdown pass to a running back this season, but that shouldn’t keep you from believing in Sanders, who has seen 14 targets over the past three weeks. The Giants have also allowed 13 rushing scores this season. Fire up Sanders with confidence.

Value Meter:
QB1: Carson Wentz (mid-range)
RB2: Miles Sanders (high end)
WR2: Alshon Jeffery (mid-range)
TE1: Zach Ertz (high end)
TE1: Dallas Goedert (low end)
Bench: Nelson Agholor, Jordan Howard (stinger)

Prediction: Eagles 31, Giants 21 ^ Top