In this make-or-break Week 14 of fantasy football — the playoffs for many of you reading this — exploiting match ups and pulling the trigger on the right players is everything.
For example, if you had Derrick Henry on your bench this week, you might be feeling the heat to make up for the lost 49 fantasy points and, well, tough luck, you missed your chance at glory. No one listed below will break out for 40-plus points.
But, we can give you some guidance on some players we think should sit or start this week. Take a look:
Start: Baker Mayfield, QB, Browns
Why start Mayfield? Well for one, it’s fun. He’s a joy to watch as he tries to make Rookie of the Year a two or three-man race behind Saquan Barkley. Before struggling against the Texans last week Mayfield was coming on strong, and is a good candidate for a bounce-back performance against the Panthers — whose pass defense leaves much to be desired of late. Take a chance, let the dice roll on the No. 1 overall pick.
Sit: Jared Goff, QB, Rams
Goff has been, well, off — at least when he’s when on the road, which is just where he’ll be Sunday facing one of the NFL’s top defenses in the Bears. If you have another option, go with it, as Goff averages under 18 fantasy points per game away from L.A. (as compared to over 32 points per home game).
Start: Gus Edwards, RB, Ravens
The Chiefs’ run defense is really bad, and Edwards has gotten 20-plus carries in his last two games. This is a safe start for Week 14.
Sit: Marlon Mack, RB, Colts
The Texans run defense allows 3.4 runs per carry — which won’t help the fact that Mack has been subpar with the ball lately. Against Houston, a pass-catching back is a better play, a guy like say Nyheim Hines. Keep Mack as a bench warmer if you have the luxury.
Start: Courtland Sutton, WR, Broncos
Demaryius Thomas is a Texan and Emmanual Sanders is on the IR. Which means Sutton is the No. 1 in Denver — on a team that has a path to an improbable playoff run ahead of them. The 49ers do boast Richard Sherman, but Sutton will see several different looks and won’t be shadowed, in all likelihood, by the star corner and is a candidate for a breakout day Sunday.
Sit: Mike Williams, WR, Chargers
Williams has had four or fewer targets in each of his last nine games, and has had more than four only twice. He is an end zone or bust start against the Bengals.
Start: C.J. Uzomah, TE, Bengals
The Bengals are reeling from injury, and with A.J. Green and Andy Dalton out, back up QB Jeff Driskel will look to his safety valve at tight end quite a bit. Uzomah has had 19 targets in his last two games combined and that trend will continue.
Sit: Kyle Rudolph, TE, Vikings
He’s been almost a non factor all season in the Minnesota vertical offense which is a shame. Rudolph caught just three passes for 39 yards last week on three targets. He won’t be much better against the Seahawks, statistics suggest.
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