Banking on boom or bust players can be a hard road to travel going into the postseason. Sometimes, you just must play the hand your dealt. With that comes making decisions on the well-known players that may have frightening matchups or statistical concerns. Do you start them based on their overall allure and stardom to make you look smart? Or do you take a risk and go for the less-known player for the chance to become your league’s legendary guru? These moves can be tough, so I am here for those needing some outside insight for making a courageous move. Here’s my big-name selections for Start ‘Em, Sit ‘Em, & Stream ‘Em for Week 14.
Two players you should start this week:
• Dak Prescott – For the Cowboys, this game could be testy. Washington’s defense has only allowed 17.5 points per game to opponents over their four-game winning streak. While they did beat Brady and the Buccaneers in Week 10, their next three games were against teams in the bottom half of offensive scoring in the NFL (Panthers, Seahawks, and Raiders). Dak and the Cowboys have the number two offense in the NFL for a reason: their offensive weapons. With Tony Pollard inactive and Ezekiel Elliott struggling on the ground, look for Dak to air it out extremely often in Week 14.
• Mark Andrews – There is no question the Ravens’ offense is struggling right now. Coach Roman’s squad has averaged less than 300 yards per game over their last four contests. This is the same team that put up 523 yards against the Colts back in Week 5. Despite their QB’s turnover troubles, Lamar Jackson has found no problem finding his tight end. Andrews has at least 4 catches and 50 yards in all but three games this season. While Cleveland is hungry for revenge, the Ravens’ consistent game plan brings confidence for starting Andrews as a TE1 in all formats Sunday.
Two players you should sit this week:
• Odell Beckham Jr. – Do I love Odell gets to play football with Matthew Stafford? Absolutely. Do I love his matchup against a top tier Arizona secondary? Absolutely not and ESPN Fantasy Football guru Matthew Berry agrees with me. According to Berry, the Cardinals have allowed the second-fewest deep completions per game this season. Considering that’s been OBJ’s primary role in LA so far, the game plan will likely sway away from his direction. Look for the Rams to use more speed on the perimeter with Cooper Kupp and Van Jefferson this week in the passing game.
• Saquon Barkley – I truly am having a hard time looking at Barkley’s name under the hate list. The former Penn State star has had a wonderful career through his first two seasons. After his ACL tear in 2020 and an ankle injury in Week 5, the Giants’ RB hasn’t looked as explosive in his first three games since the bye week. With a chance to get it back on track against the Chargers’ weak front seven, I still do not trust a New York offense that is still working out the kinks from their offensive coordinator change.
One player you could stream this week:
• Cam Newton – Okay, I’ll address it. My DeAndre Carter pick last week was a complete flop. Should that persuade me from not making another bold call for a Week 14 sleeper? Probably, but it’s not enough. Of all the bounce back candidates to select, why not pick the guy who had one of the best rebound stories this season. After coming back to Carolina, Newton had a spectacular fantasy performance against his former coach, “Riverboat Ron.” With a bye week to recuperate from the Miami disaster, I like Newton’s chances finding the endzone both in the air and on the ground this week against Atlanta.