Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans
Vegas Insight: Texans 27, Colts 22.75
Quarterback: This games features one of the best O/U’s on the slate at 50, and despite it being a divisional contest I do think this is a great spot for fantasy points. Andrew Luck is coming off his first dud in what feels like three months, but he still threw the ball 52 times and I expect the Colts to put up a much better effort in this game than they did in Jacksonville. Deshaun Watson has been a victim of the Texans easily winning games on their nine game win streak, topping out at 31 pass attempts since October 7th. He will absolutely need to throw more in this spot, should the Colts be able to put up points, and I like both of these quarterbacks in tournaments this week.
Running Back: Marlon Mack has been one of my go-to backs most weeks this season, but this doesn’t profile as an above-average matchup given the fierce Houston front. On the other side, you can definitely look at Lamar Miller in GPPs who has quietly topped 100 yards in four of his last six games, but given the ever-growing presence of Alfred Blue and my assumption that Watson will need to be involved more heavily this week, I’ll most likely pass.
Pass Catchers: Given my interest in the quarterbacks, I’m going to have interest in the pass catchers and I’m tagging three of them as cash game playable. Eric Ebron is set up to be one of the highest owned players on the slate after his 15+ targets a week ago, and Jack Doyle still on IR. TY Hilton looks good to go for this game after missing some practice time this week, and I don’t see any of the Texans corners being able to keep pace with him. Given this price, he is cash playable as well as Hopkins who is somehow under $8,000. He, like Watson, has been hurt by the lack of passing volume, but if this game goes over like I anticipate I’m expecting Nuk to drop the bomb on this Colts secondary.
Cash Game Outlook: DeAndre Hopkins, Eric Ebron, TY Hilton
GPP Outlook: Deshaun Watson, Andrew Luck
New England Patriots @ Miami Dolphins
Vegas Insight: Patriots 27.75, Dolphins 20
Quarterback: This is a relatively boring fantasy game, with the Patriots over a touchdown favorite, but there are a few targets that I love looking at in tournaments. Brady continues to be banged up, but not enough to cause him to miss a game, but I fully expect the Patriots to control the pace of this game on the ground and that’s going to cap Brady’s ceiling and ultimately remove him from my Week 14 player pool.
Running Back: Sony Michel is my big target in this game, and I’m tagging him as cash playable even though I don’t think he is going to be very highly-owned. Ultimately, Michel and Aaron Jones are going to fly under the radar this week, and given how concentrated ownership is going to be on the value options I LOVE THEM in tournaments. Michel posted a solid 25-112-1 line against the Dolphins in their first meeting this season, and the Dolphins run defense has been even worse over the last month than they were earlier on this season. The Patriots are going to want to pound the ball, especially if winning, and it won’t shock me to see Michel rack up another 20+ carries in this game.
Pass Catchers: As you can tell, I’m really not on the Dolphins side of this game, and outside of Michel my interest is pretty thin. Even though I think the game plan will be run-heavy here, the Patriots are still going to score points and we can definitely look at both Edelman and Gordon. Gordon gets a bump up with Xavien Howard set to miss this game, and we have attacked the Dolphins in the slot all season which bodes well for Edelman…who is under-owned weekly.
Cash Game Outlook: Sony Michel
GPP Outlook: Julian Edelman, Josh Gordon
Baltimore Ravens @ Kansas City Chiefs
Vegas Insight: Chiefs 28.75, Ravens 22.25
Quarterback: This is going to be one of the biggest focuses of the slate, as we have the best overall pass defense squaring off with the best overall offense. Lamar Jackson is set to start again for the Ravens, but I want no parts of him in cash games traveling into Arrowhead. Given his massive floor due to his rushing ability, we can comfortably put him in our GPP pool but I will most likely shy away from him in this spot. Patrick Mahomes continues to amaze, and I’m going to continue to list him as the top overall QB option. I won’t be using him in cash in this matchup, but he will once again be on my main GPP team.
Running Back: Gus Edwards will continue to head work for the Ravens, but we could see some more Ty Montgomery with Alex Collins on IR. This matchup is great on the ground against Kansas City, and I could see the Ravens taking a run the ball and play defense approach here to try and control the clock and keep the ball out of Mahomes hands, Edwards makes for a strong tourney target again this week. Spencer Ware is coming off a 90% owned week, and while I’m not listing him in my pool you can easily take a dart on him playing in this offense again this week.
Pass Catchers: This is obviously going to be the hot topic of this game, deciding who to stack with Patrick Mahomes. The Baltimore Ravens have been significantly more vulnerable to tight ends than wide receivers this season, making Kelce the easy top targte. However, he will be much higher-owned than Tyreek Hill, so I’m going to side with Hill in GPPs. I’m listing Kelce as cash playable, because he isn’t THAT much more than Ebron and I could see the case for trying to get up to him.
Cash Game Outlook: Travis Kelce
GPP Outlook: Patrick Mahomes, Tyreek Hill, Lamar Jackson, Gus Edwards
Atlanta Falcons @ Green Bay Packers
Vegas Insight: Packers 27.5, Falcons 23.5
Quarterback: This is my favorite overall game of the week, and I’m fully expecting a full-on F you game from Aaron Rodgers. I WISH this game was in Atlanta in the dome, but for ownership it’s probably better that it’s not. The total has steadily increased on this game throughout the week, and while I really don’t want Matt Ryan outside on the road, I want ALLLLLL of the Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers should have the game plan tailored to what he wants this week with Mike McCarthy finally out of the picture, and he is my top overall quarterback on this slate as a home favorite.
Running Back: As I mentioned with Sony Michel, I expect Aaron Jones to also fly under the radar given that he is locked into the $7,000 tier at running back, and he had a “down game” in Week 13. He actually didn’t have a down game, he just didn’t dominate the touches, but we can’t break our rule of always targeting Atlanta on the ground. I want all of the Jones in GPPs, and even pairing him with Rodgers is in play for me as well.
Pass Catchers: Davante Adams has seen 7+ targets in every game this season, and if Aaron Rodgers is tailoring a game plan to what he wants to do…don’t you think he would want to pepper his favorite target? The matchup and usage are elite, and Adams may very well be my top overall WR this week. Julio Jones missed some practice time this week, but he looks good to go for this game and he makes for the clear run-back candidate in a stack especially with the total rising.
Cash Game Outlook: Aaron Rodgers, Davante Adams
GPP Outlook: Julio Jones, Aaron Jones
New Orleans Saints @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Vegas Insight: Saints 32.5, Bucs 22.5
Quarterback: This game is one of the most interesting topics of this entire Week 14 main slate, there’s massive money on the under, sketchy weather potentially and the Saints who want to be a run-first team. I think both quarterbacks are definitely in play here, and I’m probably not as “off” this game as some, but I don’t think I want either of them in cash games. As you will read in my cash game article, I think QB is very direct this week and you can tag both Brees and Winston as GPP-only for me.
Running Back: I don’t want any Peyton Barber action against this Saints run-defense, despite the volume he has been receiving, but I think both of the Saints running backs are strong plays. We have attacked this Buccaneers run-defense at will over the course of the season, and as I mentioned with Brees the Saints want to run the ball first and foremost, with both Kamara and Ingram. Kamara sets up as a cash option for me given his price, and Ingram makes for a fantastic GPP pivot who will get overlooked due to Kamara and some of the value we have at running back this week.
Pass Catchers: The clear play here, first and foremost, is Chris Godwin with DeSean Jackson already ruled out for this game. Godwin has smashed in pretty much every game DJax has missed during his short career, and the one thing the Saints defense has struggled with has been allowing long pass plays…which fits with Godwin’s strength as a dominant talent. Adam Humphries in the slot makes for a fantastic tourney play again this week, and Michael Thomas is always in play for the Saints, though I would rather play both Kamara and Ingram in this spot for their prices.
Cash Game Outlook: Alvin Kamara, Chris Godwin
GPP Outlook: Adam Humphries, Drew Brees, Mark Ingram, Michael Thomas
Carolina Panthers @ Cleveland Browns
Vegas Insight: Panthers 24, Browns 23
Quarterback: This isn’t the best game for DFS, but I do believe there are some viable tournament plays…and of course our man Christian McCaffrey. Cam Newton is good to go after missing some practice time this week, and I really don’t expect him to be a very popular option. He still seems hurt to me, but if he is going to be low-owned we can definitely take a dart on him in tourneys especially with Denzel Ward out for the Browns. Baker Mayfield continues to thrive under new OC Freddie Kitchens, and he touched 19 DK points last week after having his worst half of football in the first half of that game. At home, as an underdog, he is at the top of my GPP list again this week.
Running Back: The running backs are certainly going to be in play, CMC for cash games and Nick Chubb for tournaments. McCaffrey is all the way up to $9,300 on DraftKings, but given what he has done this season it is well warranted. It comes down to McCaffrey, Barkley or Elliott as your RB1 this week and I have no issues with anyone choosing CMC especially factoring in his floor in this matchup. Chubb has scored in four straight weeks, and while I don’t love the matchup he is right there with Mark Ingram as a tournament option for me, I’m expecting him to be well under 8-10% owned this week.
Pass Catchers: If I’m using Cam, I would just stack him with CMC or run him our naked, per usual, but I do expect Curtis Samuel to get some traction in tournaments this week. Mayfield spreads the ball around enough to make it tough to guess, but I love the individual matchup for David Njoku and his price, so I’ll side with him in Week 14 over Jarvis Landry and Antonio Callaway.
Cash Game Outlook: Christian McCaffrey
GPP Outlook: Baker Mayfield, Nick Chubb, Cam Newton, David Njoku
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Oakland Raiders
Vegas Insight: Steelers 31, Raiders 20.5
Quarterback: This is one of my absolute favorite spots on this slate, despite the Steelers being huge 10.5 point favorites. Ben Roethlisberger is throwing the ball the most per game in the NFL right now, and I’m fully expecting the game plan to be even more pass-heavy with James Conner ruled out. This Raiders secondary is not going to be able to keep up with AB/JuJu and even though Ben is almost $7,000 on DraftKings I’m tagging him as a cash game option in Week 14.
Running Back: As just noted, James Conner is out for this game which is going to give us Jaylen Samuels and Stevan Ridley in the Steelers backfield. Samuels is who we want, he was a hybrid RB/TE in college and is exceptional at catching the football. He is set-up to be one of the highest owned players on the slate, and is pretty much a lock in cash games for me at his price.
Pass Catchers: As you can tell, I’m really not on the Raiders whatsoever in this spot, but a GPP dart mention of Marcell Ateman is warranted. I don’t think I will be able to get up to Antonio Brown in cash games, but I love both him and JuJu Smith-Schuster in GPPs. As of now, I’m planning on having Aaron Rodgers in cash games and then my main tournament team will be a Ben-AB-JuJu stack without Samuels for leverage.
Cash Game Outlook: Ben Roethlisberger, Jaylen Samuels
GPP Outlook: Antonio Brown, JuJu Smith-Schuster
Cincinnati Bengals @ Los Angeles Chargers
Vegas Insight: Chargers 31, Bengals 17
Quarterback: This is obviously a big game we want to attack for DFS given the Chargers monster 31 implied team total, but then again 14 point spread it’s going to be hard to trust someone like Philip Rivers in cash games. He has topped 2+ touchdown passes in every game which speaks to his floor, but I don’t really see the Chargers needing to keep their foot on the gas in the second half of this one. Given the Bengals being implied for just 17 points, I won’t be really have any Bengals exposure in tournaments.
Running Back: If you absolutely need to feed your Bengals fix, you can take a flier on Joe Mixon in this matchup, but the focus here will be on the Chargers backfield situation. With Melvin Gordon out again for this game, that leaves us with Austin Ekeler and Justin Jackson, both of which I’m interested in for tournaments. There have been some concerns with Ekeler’s workload management, which certainly bumps up Jackson given that he is under $4,000 on DraftKings. To me, it would make sense to plug Jackson into a mini version of the Gordon role and keep Ekeler in his usual role, but they probably won’t do that which muddies the situation as a whole. I like both in tournaments, but given the presence of both I can’t go there in cash games.
Pass Catchers: The main target here is going to be Keenan Allen, he’s coming off a 19 target game, yes you read that right, and the matchup is even better this week against the Bengals than it was the Steelers. He’s seen 7 or more targets in every game since complaining about his usage, and it’s hard to imagine him not easily beating value in this matchup against a depleted defense.
Cash Game Outlook: Keenan Allen
GPP Outlook: Austin Ekeler, Justin Jackson, Philip Rivers
Written by Ben Hossler (Follow @BenHossler on Twitter)