Fabiano’s Fantasy Focus: Week 14, Volume I

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Every week during the season NFL Network and NFL.com Senior Fantasy Analyst Michael Fabiano joins Sports360AZ.com’s Brad Cesmat to share his insight on building and developing your fantasy team for success.

Here are some hi-lights from our most recent conversation (December 4th) with the Fantasy Sports Writer’s Association Hall of Famer.

Taking a look back to Week 13, what caught your fantasy attention from the weekend? “You know it’s funny, in a week that Aaron Rodgers put up another stinker and you had at least four other stud quarterbacks including Tom Brady, Cam Newton and Drew Brees who also might have cost their fantasy owners a chance to make the playoffs.”

It also seemed like an expect-the-unexpected week for running backs, right? “It’s been the sudden absence of star running backs. Melvin Gordon missed last week and all of a sudden Austin Ekeler was thrust into a more important role. Leonard Fournette was suspended and people were trying to replace him and now you’ve got James Conner who’s going to be out this week and you have to replace, so Jaylen Samuels will be the hottest name off the waiver wire. Matt Breita also going to miss a game. I get, Breita has been injury-prone all season long but his last two games he’s been very good and now you’re looking at Jeff Wilson, Jr. and he will be a hot pickup, too. He’s like the new Gus Edwards. We are craving volume at positions of need. If the touches are there, they’re going to have value.” 

Are you surprised at the fantasy success of Russell Wilson? “He’s started off slowly but he’s always been a second-half star and he was my Starter of the Week at quarterback last week. He put up a very nice stat line against the Niners.”

If you owned Kareem Hunt, who are some options to pick up some of that slack heading into the playoffs? “It’s trivial to even talk about fantasy football considering what was on that video but unfortunately, in this case, that’s what I have to do. Anyone who saw the news likely went out on their waiver wire and picked up Spencer Ware. Spencer Ware’s not nearly as good as Kareem Hunt as an all-around back but he’s going to see volume in a high-scoring offense which means he’s going to get you value down the stretch in your fantasy playoffs. To get a running back that can produce at a pretty high level in Week 13…it’s an early Christmas gift. I’ll tell you that.”

Josh Allen or Baker Mayfield this week? “Two rookie quarterbacks! Josh Allen has given you 26-plus in two-straight weeks. He’s not a good passer in terms of his production. It’s all on the ground. It’s funny because we all talked about Lamar Jackson being that rookie running quarterback who can help you, Josh Allen’s been better. With that being said, I’m starting Baker Mayfield but Josh Allen has been a streamable option in fantasy. Baker almost threw for 400 yards last week. He did not put up a good stat line but I expect him to rebound against Carolina. Their defense has been bad lately.”

Can play two: Tariq Cohen, Alvin Kamara, Christian McCaffrey? “Cohen sits. I get it, Cohen is coming off a monster game but you do not start Cohen, regardless of what he’s done, over Christian McCaffrey and Alvin Kamara. You just do not do it.” 

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