Cam Newton (CAR QB) @ SD 13
Midway through the season, Cam was looking like a genuine bust. But over the past 3 weeks, he’s put up 40, 30, and 40 points, enough to catapult him to the #4 Fantasy QB on the year, ahead of Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning, and Matt Ryan. Something is clicking for Cam right now, so be sure to keep him rolling.
Andy Dalton (CIN QB) @ PHI 5
Dalton hasn’t eclipsed 300 passing yards since Week 6, but should be able to pick apart the Eagles defense on Thursday Night. You can bet that the Bengals will win handedly, so you just have to hope that they build that lead through the air, rather than letting BJGE poach the scores.
Eli Manning (NYG QB) @ ATL 21
During the 3 week stretch before the Giants bye, Eli averaged 6 fantasy points per game. In the 3 weeks since their bye, Eli is averaging 22 points per game. Eli’s “tired arm” is feeling better, Hakeem Nicks is finally healthy, and the Bennett connection is clicking again. So start Eli with confidence, even in a below average matchup.
Carson Palmer (OAK QB) vs. KC 8
Garbage time is Carson time! Those last-minute TDs are meaningless in the Raiders’ NFL games, but are gold for your fantasy team. Don’t hesitate to start this schmuck in your fantasy semi-finals.
Colin Kaepernick (SF QB) @ NE 6
Kaepernick is averaging almost 20 points since taking over 4 weeks ago. Granted, he would have been worthless last week if not for the 50 yard TD run, but rushing TDs are no fluke when it comes to Kaepernick. After watching the Patriots on Monday Night Football, I’m a little worried for my 49ers, but I’m not worried about Kaepernick, because God knows he’ll have to chuck that ball.
Josh Freeman (TB QB) @ NO 1
This is a sweet matchup for Freeman to utilize Vincent Jackson, Mike Williams, and yes, even Dallas Clark in.
Knowshon Moreno (DEN RB) @ BAL 10
Moreno is a beast – he’s probably the reason you made it into the semi-finals. You can expect another very heavy workload for the fresh RB against a beatable Ravens D.
David Wilson (NYG RB) @ ATL 8
This call is entirely predicated on Ahmad Bradshaw not playing, which is very possible. If Bradshaw is active, Wilson could still see 10+ touches and have value in deep leagues. But you don’t want to start anyone who isn’t a leadback in the playoffs. As great as the Falcons have been this year, they’ve been surprisingly easy to run on. Coming off a 3 TD performance, Wilson owners are licking their chops at the potential that Bradshaw sits out. The Falcons have the better record, but the Giants have been playing better football than the Falcons over the past month, so this will be a close one.
Darren McFadden (OAK RB) vs. KC 9
If DMC is fully healthy, you gotta start him, as he’ll run all over these pathetic Chiefs.
Josh Gordon (CLE WR) vs. WAS 2
Gordon is coming off of an 8 catch 86 yard effort, so he’s established himself as the go-to target in this offense. That’s a reasonably enviable position when facing the Redskins secondary. Start Josh Gordon over Larry Fitzgerald – I’m telling you.
Cecil Shorts (JAC WR) @ MIA 19
Shorts was on an absolute tear before his concussion. He should be back this week, and unlike a knee or hamstring injury, the concussion won’t “flare up” to inhibit him. Shorts is a high-end WR2 this week.
Lance Moore / Marques Colston (NO WRs) vs. TB 1
Both guys sucked it up big time last week, but this matchup is too good. Expect Drew to get his groove back, and make stars out of both Lance and Colston.
Pierre Garcon (WAS WR) @ CLE 10
It’s looking like RG3 should play Sunday, in which case Garcon is an absolute must-start. But even if Cousins is in at QB, Garcon is still good enough to start. Much of Garcon’s production comes from screens, not deep perfectly timed bombs anyway.
Martellus Bennett (NYG TE) @ ATL 11
Bennett started the year with three consecutive games with a TD, and then faced a draught, and now is back. He might not get 100+ yards, but he’s a decent bet for another redzone score this week.
Tony Romo (DAL QB) vs. PIT 32
Romo has had a rough year. If Dez Bryant is out, then he’s an even clearer sit, largely because of this nasty matchup.
Nick Foles (PHI QB) vs. CIN 26
Last week, Foles put together a big game, as the Eagles won for the first time since October. But that was against the #2 most generous defense in the Bucs. This week, by contrast, he faces the #26 Bengals on Thursday Night. Don’t get cute – you can’t trust Foles.
Beanie Wells (ARZ RB) vs. DET 22
This is probably a no-brainer, but I dislike Wells so much that I would start guys in committees over him – like Joique Bell or Pierre Thomas.
DeAngelo Williams (CAR RB) @ SD 26
Williams put together a deceptively great fantasy day last week, but without the last-minute 50 yard receiving TD, he would have had a paltry 56 yards on the ground. Maybe he’ll get lucky again, but I can’t trust him in this tough matchup.
Alex Green (GB RB) @ CHI 28
Green is looking like the featureback, but that doesn’t mean much against the Bears. Expect a similar output as last week, rushing for 60-70 yards and that’s it.
Larry Fitzgerald (ARZ WR) vs. DET 13
Through no fault of his own, Fitz has been horrible for the last several weeks. You must bench him. Even if he finally scores, it will have been the right decision. Bench him. I’m benching him for Josh Gordon, Cecil Shorts, and even Jeremy Kerley.
Jermichael Finley (GB TE) @ CHI 27
Finley had solid Weeks 12 and 13, giving the false hope that he might be “back.” He’s not back. Keep him benched, or unclaimed on waivers.