Andy Dalton (DAL): When we look at the quarterback options available to us here in Week 14, the list of names is not a promising one. However, Andy Dalton, the red rifle, returns to where he started his career in Cincinnati. The Bengals have the 26th ranked pass DVOA, and 29th ranked overall DVOA this season. Over the last two weeks, Dalton has been a top 12 fantasy quarterback. This upcoming week, he has a revenge game in a great matchup.
Philip Rivers (IND): I was originally going to list one name here, but I felt like that would be letting you guys down. Truth is, I really don’t see a ton of options at QB for you guys this week. However, I’ll toss out the name Rivers if you’re desperate. Phil draws a matchup against the Las Vegas Raiders. The Raiders allow 263 passing yards per game and are currently ranked as the 20th overall DVOA. If you really need a QB, Rivers is a decent option to turn to this week. Again, I’d advise sticking with what you have though.
Cam Akers (LAR): Chances are, Akers has been owned in your league for quite a while now. If you are one of the lucky people where he’s still out there in your league, add him now. This is more likely in a 10-team league. He shouldn’t be on waivers at this point.
Top Backup RBs: This is the time of year where we want to invest in backup running backs (also known as handcuffs) if we have not done so already. When you handcuff your RBs prior to a big-name starter going down, you don’t need to worry about blowing nearly all of your much-needed remaining FAAB late in the season. If you add priority backups before a starter goes down (which hopefully does not happen, for everyone’s sake) you save quite a bit of FAAB that you might need at another position. Players like Alexander Mattison, Tony Pollard, Jordan Wilkins, Carlos Hyde, Jeremy McNichols, Mike Boone, Ty Johnson, etc should all be on your radar moving forward. Nobody really stands out in particular this week, but we want to be ahead of the curve acquiring these guys before everyone else wants them. Johnson is listed here because Frank Gore went down and he actually had a solid performance while filling in for Gore, but keep in mind he’s still a Jets RB, technically was fourth string at that (on the worst team in the league) heading into the season, so I really can’t advocate picking him up at this point. In terms of best schedules against the run remaining (out of the teams listed above) I’d have to give the edge to Tennessee, and Indianapolis. My advice would be to find a true backup RB on a team with either a winning record, or that is dedicated to running the football, and add them to your squad at a low price if you need an RB. Preferably, if you have a bell-cow RB on your fantasy roster, and his backup is available, add that player now. You never know what can happen in the NFL.
Keke Coutee (HOU): With the Will Fuller injury, someone needed to step up for the Texans in the receiver department, and that was Coutee this week. If you did not own him previously, you likely missed his best performance of the season. However, that doesn’t mean he can’t be usable to us for fantasy. I think Coutee is a low-end flex play with some upside for the foreseeable future. Using him in your starting lineup will likely come down to the matchup he is in for that week, but he’s a solid add for now.
Collin Johnson (JAC): The Jaguars seem to have found something in this fifth-round rookie draft receiver. Johnson has come along nicely with Mike Glennon at QB. Over the last two weeks, as his playing time has risen, he hauled in 96 yards and a touchdown, and 66 receiving yards last week. This is all coming with horrific QB play. Time will tell if he can keep this going, he’s got a solid matchup against the Titans coming up.
Denzel Mims (NYJ): Speaking of rookie receivers with awful QB play, we should take a look at Denzel Mims for the Jets. Mims has been really producing over the last month. He’s scored 10 or more fantasy points in four of the last five weeks, with some combination of Joe Flacco or Sam Darnold as his quarterback. The Jets are trying to see what they have in the rookie, and so far, he’s been impressive when given the opportunity. They still have veterans like Crowder and Perriman there, but Mims has been on the rise for playing time as of late. A fine back end of the bench add, if he’s available. On top of that, he faces the Seahawks in what is a fantastic matchup in Week 14.
Cole Kmet (CHI): Here are three reasons to consider Cole Kmet as a waiver option for Week 14. One, he faces the Houston Texans, who allow 57.7 receiving yards to tight ends. Two, Kmet has seemingly taken over the lead tight end role in Chicago. He’s played more snaps each and every week. I really don’t think Kmet is startable in fantasy just yet, but with the state of tight end as it stands right now, literally, we have Kelce (82 receptions) Waller (77 receptions) and the rest of the pack at tight end this year. The third highest reception leader is T.J. Hockenson with just 52 receptions, and then there’s a whole slew of players in that 50-35 reception range. The whole position is pretty terrible, outside of a select handful of names. Perhaps the rookie who caught five receptions for 37 yards and a touchdown last week, is starting to come on towards the end of the season.
Dalton Schultz (DAL): On paper, one of the best matchups on the board for tight ends this week is Cowboys’ tight end Dalton Schultz. The Bengals are allowing the most receiving yards to tight ends, fourth most receptions per game, third most fantasy points to the position. We mentioned earlier that this is an Andy Dalton revenge game, so his QB will have extra motive to perform well. Perhaps the Cowboys can take advantage of the plus matchup for Schultz here.
Seattle Seahawks (SEA): Just add players playing against teams that are trying to lose. That list is highlighted by the Jets (@ SEA) and Jaguars (vs. TEN). Both of these teams have abysmal offenses, offensive lines, and are playing to get the highest possible draft pick to get the quarterback of their future in the upcoming draft. Just pick on the bad teams when you can.
Tennessee Titans (TEN): The Titans face the Jaguars on the road in a divisional matchup this week. After allowing 41 points to Cleveland, look for Tennessee to right the ship against the 1-10 Jaguars in a divisional matchup. Dallas defense is even a fine pickup if you’re in a pinch.
Stephen Gostkowski (TEN): This Titans game features a Titans’ team fighting for their playoff lives in a divisional matchup against the Jaguars. Tennessee opened up as 7.0-point favorites in a game with a 53-point total. Gostkowski is a fine place to look this week if you need a kicker.
Rodrigo Blankenship (IND): One game environment I like for this upcoming week is the Colts vs the Raiders. Both of these teams are fighting for a wild card spot this year and need to win. Indianapolis are 3.0-point favorites in this contest. I’m expecting a competitive, high scoring (total at 50.5 as of this writing) contest.
Brandon Allen (Chest)
Daniel Jones (Hamstring)
Clyde Edwards-Helaire (Illness)
Frank Gore (Concussion)
Darrell Henderson (Knee)
Joshua Kelley (Ankle)
Salvon Ahmed (Shoulder)
Matt Breida (Illness)
James Conner (COVID)
Josh Jacobs (Ankle)
Alexander Mattison (Illness)
D’Andre Swift (Illness)
DeAndre Washington (Hamstring)
Tee Higgins (Hamstring)
Kenny Golladay (Hip)
Jace Sternberger (Concussion)
Mark Andrews (COVID)
Irv Smith Jr (Back)
Jonnu Smith (Knee)
(Cover Photo: Rey Del Rio/Getty Images)