Fantasy Football Studs and Duds: Week 14 (Playoff Edition)
Congratulations, you have made it your fantasy playoffs. Now is the time to either go big or go home. Here are a few Week 14 studs and duds to consider as you fight your way to fantasy victory.
Carson Palmer, QB vs.Miami:
- Last week against Washington, Palmer had one of his most efficient games of the year, throwing for 300 yards and three touchdowns without any interceptions. Miami was recently embarrassed by an underwhelming Joe Flacco and they show no signs of improvement. Might I also add that they allowed Colin Kaepernick and his 25th ranked offense to throw three touchdowns just two weeks ago. I would easily bet that Palmer’s hot streak will continue against this defense that has yielded 21 passing touchdowns on the year.
Lesean McCoy, RB vs. Pittsburgh:
- Not much needs to be said about this matchup. McCoy has been playing at a Pro Bowl caliber once again and this Bills’ rushing offense is booming. Tyrod Taylor has not been passing the ball well and the Steelers’ pass defense has been pretty impressive as of late, forcing Buffalo to run the ball even more. McCoy is a must start this playoff week.
Jordy Nelson, WR vs. Seattle:
- This season, Nelson has put himself back into the top tier of wide receivers in the league. Aaron Rodgers has also been playing extremely well, creating a surprisingly favorable matchup against the now Earl Thomas-lacking Seattle defense. Jordy Nelson will post very respectable numbers this week against the Seahawks.
Tyrod Taylor, QB vs. Pittsburgh:
- Taylor hasn’t thrown for 300 yards at all this season, and hasn’t topped 200 yards since Week 9. Pittsburgh has easily corralled the Giants’ and Colts’ passing attacks in the past two weeks and plan on doing the same against Taylor. With Lesean McCoy running as well as he is right now, the Bills’ coaching staff will opt to run much more than pass this game.
Carlos Hyde, RB vs. New York Jets:
- As terrible as the Jets have played this season, their defensive line still hold its own most games. The Jets’ run defense has respectably yielded about 90.3 rushing yards per game, which is ranked 4th in the league. The 49ers’ offense has been disappointing to say the least, and although Hyde seems to be one of their few bright spots, he hasn’t scored since Week 5, keeping him out of fantasy lineups this week.
Tyreek Hill, WR vs. Oakland:
- Hill has exploded onto the fantasy scene this year, being owned in now 63% of ESPN fantasy leagues. He has used his versatile playmaking ability to take full advantage of his uptick in playing time, due to Jeremy Maclin’s lingering groin injury. Unfortunately, Hill’s reign of terror should come to an end this week with Jeremy Maclin back at practice. Even if Maclin doesn’t produce high numbers this week, just his presence on the field will cut into Hill’s playing time, creating less big play opportunities.
Dion Lewis, RB: Lewis seems to have resumed his role of lead receiving back for the Pats. With Baltimore having such a strong run defense, Tom Brady may be forced to throw the ball more, resulting in more targets for Lewis.
Malcolm Mitchell, WR: After three productive weeks, Mitchell is barely a sleeper at this point. As previously stated, the Patriots may be forced to pass a little more than usual, creating more opportunities for Mitchell as well.
Colts, D/ST: No, you’re not crazy, I definitely AM talking about the Colts defense right now. Matching up against the awful Texans’ offense and coming off of a stellar win against NYJ, the Colts D/ST is a strong consideration if in a pinch.