Sink or Swim: Week 14
Jared Goff (Los Angeles Rams):
This game has shootout written all over it, which is good news for both QB’s fantasy potential, with Goff looking at a potential negative game script for once. The Eagles pass defense isn’t as great as the numbers show, as they have struggled against capable QB’s this season. As long as he can keep the turnovers in check, as he has done all season, Goff should be looking at his 4th 300+ yard game of the season.
Jameis Winston (Tampa Bay Buccaneers):
Winston was predictably conservative in his first game back last week from a shoulder injury, but was still able to put together a solid fantasy day with 270 yards and 2 TD’s. Expect him to take some more chances this weekend in a potential high scoring game against a Lions defense that’s been picked apart by opposing QB’s as of late.
Jimmy Garoppolo (San Francisco 49ers):
Jimmy G was pretty darn good in his first start as a 49er last week, playing well enough to get his team a win on the road at least. It didn’t produce great fantasy numbers, but he should be in for a bigger day this week going against a Texans defense that has produced some good outings for QB’s this season.
Marcus Mariota (Tennessee Titans):
He still isn’t putting up the numbers you’d like to see throwing the ball, but has buoyed his fantasy value with his rushing numbers. It’s tough to depend on that on a week to week basis, and with the Cardinals pass defense playing better as a unit of late, Mariota is at best a low-end QB1 option this week.
Derek Carr (Oakland Raiders):
Carr just hasn’t been able to post QB1 numbers this season, and despite his best game of the season coming against the Chiefs (and Marcus Peters suspension), I’m not buying him this week at Arrowhead. The Chiefs will focus on taking away Michael Crabtree at all costs with Amari Cooper still sidelined, leaving Carr to utilize the rest of his lackluster supporting cast.
Jamaal Williams (Green Bay Packers):
Despite the return of Aaron Jones last week, Williams continued to work as the bell cow back for the Packers, receiving all but the final carry of the game. Jones role will likely expand a bit this week, but Williams is still locked in as the top early down option here and should be able to total 100+ yards against the Browns on Sunday.
Kenyan Drake (Miami Dolphins):
Drake should be in for another high volume game Monday night, although I’d expect more work in the passing game while seeing less carries. It gives him a boost in PPR leagues but his floor should stay steady in standard leagues as well with him seeing another 20+ touches.
Alex Collins (Baltimore Ravens):
Collins is finally being used in an every down role, which has taken him from a flex play to RB1 status over the past 3 weeks. The yardage may leave something to be desired, but I expect the Ravens to look to pound the ball on the ground and they should have success with Pittsburgh missing Ryan Shazier.
Deep Dives–Giovanni Bernard, Peyton Barber
Leonard Fournette (Jacksonville Jaguars):
Fournette has struggled to do much since returning from injury, and its fair to wonder just how much that ankle is still bothering him. Factor in that he’s going up against a Seahawks defense that has been stout against the run the past 2 months and it’s hard to envision Fournette topping 50 yards on the ground in this game.
Demarco Murray (Tennessee Titans):
As Derrick Henry’s touches increase, Demarco Murray’s continue to decrease, making him really only an option as a flex play in PPR leagues right now. Henry is being used as the “closer” back, and should be the better play this week with the Titans as favorites against the Cardinals.
Josh Gordon (Cleveland Browns):
Gordon lived up to expectation in his return to football last week, as he looked more or less like his old self in his first game in close to 3 years. He was targeted early and often, and we should see that be a weekly trend with Deshone Kizer looking to lock on to his best receiving option in an effort to salvage his terrible rookie season. If Gordon gets another 10+ targets this Sunday against the Packers, there is truly an unlimited ceiling for him. Of course, it all comes with some risk with Kizer under center. Still, the upside is worth playing him.
Jamison Crowder (Washington Redskins):
Crowder is looking like Kirk Cousins only real option in the passing game this week, with Josh Doctson likely up against Casey Hayward and Vernon Davis disappearing over the past two games. He’s put up at least 12 points in PPR formats since week 8 and will have the easiest match up in the offense running his routes out of the slot.
Sterling Sheppard (New York Giants):
With Eli Manning back under center, it’s safe again to fire up Sheppard as a WR2 option as he had been targeted a bunch by Eli the last two games they played together, totaling 16 catches and 212 yards in those weeks. It’s a good match up as well, with the Cowboys struggling to defend the position most of the season.
Deep Dives–Marquise Goodwin, Kenny Stills, Dede Westbrook
DeVante Parker (Miami Dolphins):
Already losing snaps to Kenny Stills, Parker will likely be matched up with Stephen Gilmore again in this game, who limited Parker to just 1 catch and 5 yards when these teams met 2 weeks ago. It’s looking like another disappointing season for the talented receiver.
Jordy Nelson (Green Bay Packers):
He hasn’t been playable for quite some time now (week 6 to be exact), but this is more of a reminder that this should be the last time that is true, as Aaron Rodgers is due back next week. Hopefully you earned yourself a bye and can wait a week, but if you are in a must win situation, you should look elsewhere this week.
Hunter Henry (Los Angeles Chargers):
Hopefully Henry is here to stay as an every week TE1 as he continues to be a match up nightmare for opposing defenses when he is actually out there running routes. The match up again works in his favor as well, with the Redskins ranking in the bottom 5 in term of defending opponents tight ends.
Jack Doyle (Indianapolis Colts):
T.Y. Hilton has been better as of late, but Doyle is still there most reliable pass catcher and gets a great match up in this one as the Bills are one of the worst in the league at defending the tight end position.
Cameron Brate (Tampa Bay Buccaneers):
Brate disappeared for a while there while Ryan Fitzpatrick was filling in for Jameis Winston, but with Winston back, he is back on the TE1 map. His two TD’s saved his value last week, but prior to Winston’s injury, Brate had put up at least 4 catches and 60 yards in 5 straight games.
Deep Dives–Ricky Seals-Jones
Charles Clay (Buffalo Bills):
Even if Tyrod Taylor starts this game, Clay has been mostly a non-factor since returning from injury and with Kelvin Benjamin back, don’t expect him to see an uptick in targets.
Kyle Rudolph (Minnesota Vikings):
He’s an ok floor play given his targets/receptions per game, but the Panthers are currently the toughest team against opposing tight ends in the league, leaving him as a low-end TE1 option at best.