Having a consistent quarterback is nice, but not necessary, as evidenced by Week 13's fantasy scoring. Here are just some of the names in the top 12 of scoring among QBs for Week 13 — Josh Allen, Nick Mullens, Derek Carr and Lamar Jackson. I'm sure everyone had these guys high on their draft boards entering this season.
The point is quarterbacks can be found, but with the fantasy playoffs upon us you need to make sure you start the right one.
Before diving into the Week 14 start/sit advice for quarterbacks (and don't forget defense/special teams), let's see how the Week 13 suggestions turned out.
Good Calls for Week 13...
Start Jameis Winston (22.76 fantasy points) – Winston is asserting himself and playing like his career depends on it, which it kind of does.
Start Lamar Jackson (16.5 FP) – Jackson continues to reach value with his rushing ability, thanks to another 75 yards and touchdown on the ground.
Bad Calls for Week 13...
Sit Carson Wentz (19.84 FP) – Wentz rebounded after two bad games and now the Eagles' offense is showing signs of life.
START THESE QBs...
Baker Mayfield, CLE (vs. CAR)
Mayfield is coming off a game against the Texans where he threw three interceptions. However, he did put up 397 yards and a touchdown, so for fantasy purposes, it was a 20-point week in most scoring systems. Things get easier for Mayfield in Week 14. He faces a struggling Panthers defense that entered last week sixth in terms of fantasy points allowed to quarterbacks. Mayfield has thrown multiple touchdown passes in five of eight games this season. He's a QB1 for the first week of the fantasy playoffs.
Mitchell Trubisky, CHI (vs. LAR)
Trubisky has been held to one touchdown and no more than 165 passing yards or less in two of his last three starts and will need to show that his shoulder his fully healed if he's going to return for the Sunday night showdown with the Rams. If he does play, this game could feature plenty of points and he'll get a shot against a Los Angeles defense that can be scored upon (14 TD passes allowed in last four games).
Lamar Jackson, BAL (at KC)
Despite missing a chunk of the second half due to a concussion check, Jackson was still the No. 12 fantasy scoring quarterback last week thanks in large part to 75 rushing yards and a touchdown. Even though he’s routinely missing throws and probably angering his wideouts (averaging 13 completions and 150 passing yards per start), the fantasy production is there — as are the wins. He’s gone 3-0 as a starter and the Chiefs' defense just let Derek Carr and the Raiders put up 33 points. So there’s potential here.
MIGHT BE WORTH THE RISK...
Case Keenum, DEN (at SF)
Keenum hasn't thrown for more than 205 yards during the Broncos' three-game winning streak, and while his volume will likely remain low in Week 14, he could be surprisingly productive against a 49ers defense that ranks 29th in QB rating against and has given up the eighth-most fantasy points to quarterbacks this season.
SIT THESE QBs...
Matt Ryan, ATL (at GB)
Ryan was held in check by Baltimore’s defense at home last week, finishing with just 131 passing yards and a touchdown. He and the Falcons will hope to rebound in Green Bay against a Packers defense that just let the Cardinals win in Lambeau, so there could be cause for optimism. That said, Vegas still has the Falcons as six-point underdogs traveling far from their warm dome to the almost-winter wonderland of Green Bay. This is more about liking other signal-callers such as Mitchell Trubisky and Dak Prescott rather than hating Ryan, but you don’t think you need to tangle with cold/road Ryan. His completion rate drops roughly 7.5 percentage points and his yards per pass attempt falls nearly two yards away from home.
Carson Wentz, PHI (at DAL)
The Cowboys have been the eighth-best fantasy defense against QBs this year, and they just limited Drew Brees and the Saints' offense to 10 points. Wentz has been up and down recently, so the tough matchup on the road doesn't exactly portend big numbers.
Matthew Stafford, DET (at ARI)
The Cardinals have their issues, but their defense is good enough to beat a Lions team incapable of being consistent on offense. Stafford hasn't had a 20-point fantasy effort since Week 4. He hasn't even eclipsed the 17-point mark since Week 9. So even in a game that the Lions should win, don’t bet on Stafford. Detroit's offense just doesn't have the weapons to merit much trust in fantasy.
YOU’VE BEEN WARNED...
Russell Wilson, SEA (vs. MIN, Mon.)
Wilson took his touchdown efficiency to new heights last week throwing four scoring strikes on just 11 completions (out of 17 attempts) against a hapless 49ers defense. The Vikings should offer considerably stiffer competition in a game that has seen the Vegas total slip from 45.5 to 45 already. Seattle remains the only team in the NFL that runs the ball more often than throwing it (51/49 split), which decreases Wilson's chances of putting together a big night. This has all the makings of a low-scoring game, meaning Wilson will finish outside the top 12 fantasy QBs this week.
Defense/Special Teams (DSTs)
START THESE DSTs...
Buffalo Bills (vs. NYJ)
The Bills DST has managed just 12 fantasy points in the last two games, but this is all about the matchup. The Jets have averaged two turnovers per game and opposing DSTs have averaged more than nine fantasy points against them. Looking for a streaming option this week? Go get the Bills DST.
New Orleans Saints (at TB)
The Saints have the hottest DST in fantasy, scoring 13 or more points in each of its last three games while allowing fewer than 14 points in that time. You can expect their recent streak of success to continue versus the Buccaneers this week, especially if Jameis Winston's interception issues arise again.
SIT THESE DSTs...
Minnesota Vikings (at SEA, Mon.)
It's always tough to play in Seattle, and Russell Wilson has been playing very well as of late. If the Vikings can't get pressure on him, they will struggle to generate any sort of points, as Wilson has only thrown two interceptions since Week 3.
Baltimore Ravens (at KC)
The Ravens DST has proven to be a front-runner this year, and even though the unit came through in a fairly tough matchup last week in Atlanta, there’s no way you can trust this DST in Kansas City. Aside from the Week 11 anomaly when the Chiefs turned it over five times and allowed two defensive TDs to the Rams, Kansas City has been downright Grinch-like to opposing DSTs, allowing only one other to manage even five fantasy points.
— Written by Michael Horvath, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Horvath is a Canadian who also happens to be a fantasy football (not to be confused with CFL) and fitness nut. Follow him on Twitter @realmikehorvath.