Sneaky Starts: Week 14

Sneaky Starts: Week 14

By John Paulsen (Senior Editor), last update Dec 5, 2014

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John was named the Most Accurate Fantasy Football Expert by FantasyPros for the 2010 and 2014 seasons, finished as runner-up in 2011 and 4th in both 2012 and 2015 for a total of five Top 5 seasons in the last six years. Cumulatively, John was the most accurate expert from 2010-15 while also winning the 2011 Fantasy Sports Trade Association award for the most accurate draft rankings. 

Follow John Paulsen on Twitter: @4for4_John.

All but the luckiest fantasy owners at some point need to find the proverbial diamond in the rough -- a waiver wire or bench player who is capable of putting up some points in a pinch. This weekly feature is dedicated to that part of fantasy football. It's not pretty, but it's part of the game.

How did our Sneaky Starts fare last week? There are always a few duds, but Mark Sanchez (QB11), Drew Stanton (QB18), Dan Herron (RB9), Roy Helu (RB11), Jonathan Stewart (RB19), LeGarrette Blount (RB30), Theo Riddick (RB35), Kenny Stills (WR6), Kendall Wright (WR8), Malcom Floyd (WR33), Marques Colston (WR36), Coby Fleener (TE1) and Kyle Rudolph (TE15) all posted flex- to starter-caliber numbers in Week 13.

It’s important not to get too cute at this point in the fantasy postseason, but injuries may force owners to think outside of the box when setting their lineups. Let’s take a look at the top Sneaky Starts for Week 14:



Eli Manning, Giants (@ TEN)
I was expecting more in Week 13 against the Jaguars (247 yards, TD), but Jacksonville has actually become pretty stingy against the pass in recent weeks (#5 in QB aFPA). Manning has been quiet of late, but that’s largely due to bad matchups against the Seahawks and 49ers. The Titans just gave up six touchdowns to Ryan Fitzpatrick, so the opportunity for a good fantasy line is there for Eli.

Colin Kaepernick, 49ers (@ OAK)
The Raiders held Philip Rivers in check in Week 11, but they have given up 183 yards and two touchdowns to Shaun Hill, 234 yards and two touchdowns to Alex Smith and 340 yards and five touchdowns to Peyton Manning. This has resulted in a #26 QB aFPA over the past 10 weeks. Kaepernick has not had a great fantasy line since Week 6, but this should be a fiercely competitive game and the 49ers need a win.

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