Carolina Panthers

Fantasy Football: Fitzpatrick, Hopkins could hit big numbers again

Week 14 is here – December football and fantasy playoffs for many leagues. In general, don’t get too cute, and start the guys that got you here (although injuries, weather, and teams looking to next year can have an impact).

You hate to chase last week’s points, but Ryan Fitzpatrick (Houston) and DeAndre Hopkins both look like strong plays at Jacksonville after Fitzpatrick’s six touchdowns last week and Hopkins’ career day. I spotlighted this last week. Hopkins now averages 139 yards in his past four games with Fitzpatrick under center.

I also mentioned that Tre Mason (St. Louis) was a good candidate to bust a long score and was due for a two-touchdown game last week – a FanDuel gem if you also played him. Mason is near impossible to bench this week, but Washington has given up the second fewest fantasy points to running backs over the last three weeks.

Over his past five games against Cincinnati, Ben Roethlisberger (Pittsburgh) averages just 227 yards and 1.2 touchdowns per game. Roethlisberger may be a sit this week if you have a better option.

Ryan Tannehill (Miami) is off a disappointing game against the Jets but keep him in the lineup. Tannehill is the seventh-best quarterback since Week 6 while Baltimore allows the most fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks since Week 8.

After zero catches last week, you have to think the Saints get Jimmy Graham going again this week (Graham averages seven receptions, 85 yards and one touchdown in his career against the Panthers).

My FanDuel Week 14 lineup is: QB Fitzpatrick ($8,300), RB Eddie Lacy ($8,500), RB Jonathan Stewart ($5,200), WR Odell Beckham Jr. ($8,200), WR Hopkins ($7,500), WR Kenny Stills ($6,400), TE Graham ($7,100), K Phil Dawson ($4,800), Minnesota Defense ($5,000).

Week 14 sleepers

Isaiah Crowell (hip) needs to be monitored but if he starts I would get him in your lineup. Cleveland will need to establish the run to try to keep Andrew Luck off the field, and over the past four weeks no team has given up more fantasy points to running backs than Indianapolis (including the Jonas Gray four-score game).

Jonathan Stewart (Carolina) has some sleeper potential this week. New Orleans has allowed the fifth-most fantasy points to running backs over the last five weeks while Stewart totaled 110 yards last week, plus DeAngelo Williams will be out.

If Rashad Jennings is out for the N.Y. Giants, Andre Williams is worth a start for teams needing a number two running back. Williams hasn’t done much as a starter, but over the last eight weeks no team allows more fantasy points to opposing backs than Tennessee and Williams should see easy sledding.