It’s Week 14, which means in the majority of non-MFL leagues, it’s playoff time. For some, it’s been a must-win week for awhile now, but now, everyone can relate. With no hesitation, let’s get to this week’s starts and sits.
Kenny Stills, New Orleans: When Brandin Cooks went down, owners gravitated toward veteran Marques Colston to fill the void in the struggling New Orleans offense. What happens when you count on Colston, class? Correct, he lets you down. It has been Kenny Stills, the second-year receiver out of Oklahoma, who has benefited with an increase of targets and production with Cooks out of the picture. He burnt a horrible Pittsburgh secondary last year to the tune of five catches, 162 yards and a score. Against an equally poor Carolina secondary, expect Stills to put up a big day again on Sunday, as he’s our start of the week.
Ryan Tannehill, Miami: He had an off-week last week, but Tannehill has quietly been one of the better and more consistent quarterbacks this year in fantasy, in part to his running ability. Tannehill faces a banged up Ravens secondary in Miami, where the Dolphins have played better. Expect Tannehill to put up top-12 numbers at the position this week.
Rashad Jennings, New York Giants: What a boost Jennings has given to this offense, eh? NFL.com doesn’t expect Jennings to miss anytime with an ankle injury suffered during last week’s game, so he’s an automatic start against a poor Tennessee run defense. Jennings, who scored twice last week, should find the end zone again this week and, as always, will contribute in the passing game, too.
Kyle Rudolph, Minnesota: Rudolph seems to still have the training wheels on since his return from injury. A week after putting up a zero, he managed to find the end zone last week. This week, the matchup is great, as he faces a Jets’ defense that has struggled against the tight end all year, allowing 12 touchdowns to the opposition. At this point, you start the tight end that gives you the best chance to score. This week, it’s Rudolph.
Philip Rivers, San Diego: I think I just like typing his name in this section because he’s such an easy guy to root against. For real, though, putting bias aside, it’s a bad matchup for Rivers, as he’ll take on New England. The Patriots have been relatively tough on quarterbacks this season, and while you may not have better options at this point in the season, temper your expectations after Rivers’ big game last week.
Fred Jackson, Buffalo: It was nice to see Jackson lead the Buffalo rushing attack in its win over Cleveland, however, he hasn’t been too productive since returning to the lineup from injury. Add to the fact that the Bills face Denver’s stingy run defense this week, Jackson should be considered as no more than a low-end RB2 or flex play.
Brandon LaFell, New England: LaFell has been one of the better values this year in fantasy, as he’s enjoyed a breakout year (finally) with Tom Brady and Co. This week, however, he will square off against Brandon Flowers of San Diego, who has held No. 1 receivers in check this season. LaFell should be considered a WR3 or flex play this week, at best.
Greg Olsen, Carolina: You’re not benching Olsen. Chances are, if a tight end on your roster can catch a ball, you’re playing him. Olsen is here — like others in the past — to tell you to temper your expectations for his matchup against the Saints. Olsen has struggled against them throughout his career, and New Orleans is one of the better defenses against the tight end this season. You’re starting him, but count on production from your other positions.