The fantasy football regular season is winding down. Our focus will then shift toward the playoffs, making every snap and every point worth that much more to your squad.
And if you were relying on the fantasy production of Kareem Hunt of the Kansas City Chiefs, who was recently cut from the team, it’s time to scramble and get as many high-quality backups as you can before you make a run at this year’s championship trophy.
Ty Montgomery, RB, Baltimore Ravens (87 percent)
Montgomery saw 11 touches between Weeks 12 and 13, confirming he is getting a larger share of the offense going forward. His ability to catch passes out of the backfield is key in a Week 14 matchup against a Kansas City Chiefs team that yields a 111.9 passer rating against opposing quarterbacks targeting running backs in 2018, per TruMedia. League average passer rating in these circumstances is 99.4.
Lions Defense (92 percent)
Detroit wasn’t impressive against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday but its next two opponents, the Arizona Cardinals and Buffalo Bills, won’t need them to be. The Cardinals entered Week 13 scoring a league-low 1.1 points per drive and the Bills are right behind them with just 1.2 points per drive. Hard to ask for easier opponents as you gear up for your fantasy football playoffs.
Jeff Wilson Jr., RB, San Francisco 49ers (99 percent)
An nagging injury to starting running back Matt Breida allowed Wilson to step in and make a name for himself. The undrafted free agent only had seven NFL carries before getting 15 and gaining 61 yards in Sunday’s loss to the Seahawks. Breida, by comparison, had five carries for six yards.
Ryan Tannehill, QB, Miami Dolphins (96 percent)
The veteran quarterback performed well in his return from injury in Week 12 — he threw a pair of touchdowns against the Indianapolis Colts — and followed that up with a three-touchdown outing against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. Next week he will face a New England Patriots defense that is allowing almost 20 fantasy points per game to passers this season despite the second-best secondary, per Pro Football Focus.
Chris Godwin, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (55 percent)
An injury to DeSean Jackson (thumb) ruled him out for Sunday’s game against the Carolina Panthers, resulting in Godwin catching 5 of 6 targets for 101 yards and a touchdown in that game. Even before that he was worthy of a spot on your roster. Heading into this week, Godwin and whoever has been under center for the Bucs have produced a team-high 124.7 passer rating in 2018.
Rashaad Penny, RB, Seattle Seahawks (79 percent)
Seahawks Offensive Coordinator Brian Schottenheimer told reporters he was giving Penny a larger role in the offense for Sunday’s matchup with the 49ers. Heading into the game, Penny had carried the ball 66 times for 304 yards and a touchdown, averaging over 3.3 yards per carry after contact. Five of those carries went for 15 yards or more, giving him a higher breakaway rate (44 percent) than either of the two players with whom he is sharing time, Chris Carson (25 percent) and Mike Davis (19 percent). Penny wound up with 65 yards and a touchdown on seven carries in Seattle’s 43-16 win.
Zay Jones, WR, Buffalo Bills (99 percent)
An off day in Week 12 against the Jacksonville Jaguars (one target) might have scared some owners, but Jones remains the team’s most-targeted receiver (69 targets in 2018). He caught four passes on Sunday against the Dolphins for 67 yards and two touchdowns, and is one of the league’s most potent deep threats, reeling in 7 of 8 catchable passes thrown 20 or more yards for 193 yards and three touchdowns this season. He gets more than a third of the team’s red-zone targets as well — only three wideouts see a larger share in 2018.
Courtland Sutton, WR, Denver Broncos (47 percent)
Sutton gets a steady diet of targets and his latest effort, a four-catch performance in Sunday’s win over the Cincinnati Bengals, netted him 85 yards and his third touchdown of the season. Next week’s opponent, the San Francisco 49ers, has the worst secondary in the league, per Pro Football Focus.
Curtis Samuel, WR, Carolina Panthers (87 percent)
Quarterback Cam Newton threw the ball to Samuel a season-high 11 times for six catches and 88 yards on Sunday, improving on the duo’s 106.7 passer rating they had as a unit heading into the loss at Tampa Bay. One reason Newton trusts him so much is his ability to run crisp routes — Samuel is averaging almost two yards per route run in 2018, second-best on the team after DJ Moore (2.3).
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