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Four-Down Duel: Green Means Go

Kevin Payne

Kevin has worked for Rotowire just under a decade and has covered basketball, baseball and football. A glutton for punishment, he roots for his hometown Bills, Sabres and the New York Yankees. He hosts the RotoWire SiriusXM show every Wednesday and Friday and you can follow him on Twitter @KCPayne26.

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Here’s a look at some recommended plays on FanDuel for Week 14:


Matt Ryan, ATL, $8500 – Believe it or not there are eight quarterbacks with a higher price tag than Ryan this week, likely the result of a poor fantasy day against the Saints and a 2:6 TD:INT ratio in his last three games. Heading into this week there are a lot of factors in his favor. Both he and the Falcons have had 10 days to prepare for the Panthers who will be playing their third game in 20 days. The first time around Ryan had the Panthers figured out, as he threw for 369 yards and three touchdowns. Carolina is 18th in the league giving up 7.0 YPA, but over their last four games they have given up 27 (KC), 22 (PHI), 27 (KC) and 36 (DEN) points. At 11-1, the Falcons will play with a lot of motivation as they fight for a first-round bye and home field advantage during the playoffs.

Brandon Weeden, CLE, $6000 – Weeden appeared to be over any concussion injury last week as he threw for 364 yards and a touchdown. While that was against a lowly defense in the Raiders, the value in Weeden here lies in the price tag. He’ll go up against a Kansas City defense that could be in for a letdown after an emotional win. While last weekend’s performance from KC was uplifting, this defense giving up a league-worst mark of 8.3 YPA this season. Josh Gordon has come on strong as a deep threat while Greg Little can make the occasional tough catch. Again, this recommendation is if you’re looking to save money at the quarterback spot or if you’re playing in an expert league that gives you $5000 less to spend on your lineup.

Running Backs

Jonathan Dwyer, PIT, $5900 – The running back carousel in Pittsburgh has seemingly come to a halt after a committee of four different running backs were used in Cleveland. Dwyer has caught eight passes out of the backfield over the last three games and should get 15-20 carries against the Chargers. While it’s kind of surprising that Dwyer only scored his first touchdown last week, the good news here is that he’s not going to lose the goal line work to someone else. Ben Roethlisberger is expected to be back which will help keep the defenses more honest and use fewer players in the box in an attempt to slow down the running game.

Vick Ballard, IND, $5600 – It looks as if there was a week to throw Ballard into your lineup, this would be it, as Donald Brown has been ruled out for the game against Tennessee. Delone Carter may vulture some touches, but it should be Ballard with the lion’s share of work. Ballard is coming off his best fantasy game of the season in which he had 13.6 FanDuel points and is now going up against a defense that has given up 11 rushing touchdowns and 129.4 rushing yards per game this season.

Alex Green, GB, $5000 – With the news that the Packers signed free agent Ryan Grant off the street, it’s likely James Starks season is over. That means Green should get the biggest workload out of the Packers’ backfield this week. Green hasn’t been overly impressive on the season, but he was praised by Packers coach Mike McCarthy as having his “best game of the season” last week. Green and Starks combined for 30 touches last week, meaning it wouldn’t be surprising if Green got around 20 touches this week against the Lions.

Wide Receivers

Chris Givens, STL, $5500 – Givens turned in his second straight solid fantasy performance last week and has now totaled 16 catches for 207 yards and a touchdown over his last two contests. The rookie speedster has emerged as Sam Bradford’s top target while Danny Amendola has been on the mend. Amendola is not expected to play again this weekend meaning that Givens could be in for another big game. At $5500, Givens is 49th ranked wide receiver as far as price goes, so the potential return on Givens could be immense.

Michael Floyd, ARI, $4700 – I’m sure highlighting this guy is going to sound strange, but I have hit on some long shots this season, so stick with me. First, the news breaking Wednesday that there’s been a switch from rookie Ryan Lindley to John Skelton can only help the Cardinals’ receiving corps. Next, it doesn’t appear that Andre Roberts will suit up again which will give Floyd another start. Floyd got 10 targets last week against the Jets and should see softer coverage with the Seahawks missing Brandon Browner to suspension and the defense collectively looking to stop Larry Fitzgerald. Floyd is a gamble, but he could pay off big especially given his cost.

Tight End

Tony Scheffler, DET, $4700 – Scheffler should be in for a bigger role this week now that both Ryan Broyles and Titus Young have been placed on IR with knee injuries. As a result, the Lions should use Scheffler a lot more, especially out of the slot where Broyles had played a lot. The Lions have played in plenty of high-scoring games lately with their last six games totaling at least 44 points. That indicates there’s potentially a lot of fantasy value in the Lions’ offense this week against Green Bay. Of course, much of the coverage will focus on stopping Calvin Johnson, giving Scheffler plenty of room to work over the middle.