Are you superstitious about the number 13? Apparently, the superstition that the number 13 is unlucky was due to a clerical error and the fear is completely unfounded. Maybe so, but week 13 was not a lucky one for my fantasy flex boomers. I completely missed on Devin Singletary and Marvin Jones/Laviska Shenault, and OBJ and Josh Reynolds landed right at projections but didn’t boom. OBJ and Reynolds didn’t hurt you, but they didn’t help you either, and that is the point of this article. I apologize and will try to do better this week.
As a reminder, for more details about my processes, check out this article. But starting this week. I’m switching to ESPN projections for .5ppr because more people probably use ESPN.
Let’s get into it.
Fantasy Football Flex Boomers Week 14
Javonte Williams, RB, Broncos v. Lions, 12 points
Williams is a borderline flex/starter for many teams, but I wanted to include him because I think his projections are low at 12 points against the Lions’ defense that’s ranked 30 against the run. Last week against the Chiefs, a much better run defense, Williams ran wild in Melvin Gordon’s absence, exploding for 23 carries, 6 catches, 178 total yards, 1 touchdown, and 26.8 fantasy points. The Broncos, over the last 2 weeks, average almost 30 running back rush attempts a game and against the Lions at home, I see no reason to change course. Launch the J-train for 17 fantasy points even with Gordon starting.
Ameer Abdullah, RB, Panthers v. Falcons, 8.8 points
As we enter the bold call territory and put on our big boy pants, I do believe that Adbullah can boom this week against the horrendous run defense of Atlanta at home. And head coach Matt Rhule does want to run the ball more, up to 30 rush attempts a game. The Panthers are rolling out Cam Newton as their starting quarterback who threw 21 passes in his last game against Miami for only 5 receptions and 2 interceptions. When your starting QB’s reception to interception ratio is almost 2:1, keeping the ball on the ground is a great idea and the Falcons provide the right environment for it. Why not employ the game strategy that the Pats used successfully against the Bills Monday night in the Buffalo blizzard with 46 rush attempts and 3 passes? Chuba Hubbard should get most of the RB work and Cam will certainly run his share, but when Cam does need to pass, Abdullah can catch. In 5 games with the Panthers, Abdullah has been targeted 20 times to Hubbard’s 5, and Ameer is also used as a kick returner in the event your league scores kick return yards and touchdowns.
K.J. Osborn, WR, Vikings v. Steelers, 8.5 points
An injury to starting wide receiver, Adam Thielen, early in the first quarter last week, forced Osborn into more playing time and he performed admirably. He turned 7 targets into 4 receptions for 47 yards, 1 TD, and 12.7 fantasy points. Osborn gets the start again this week as Thielen isn’t ready to return and surprisingly, he is only 23% owned in ESPN fantasy leagues. This is too low for Kirk Cousin’s #2 WR. Thielen averaged almost 8 targets a game from Cousins who has thrown 25 touchdown passes and only 3 interceptions on the year. Cousins is also 6th in the league in passing yards with 3353. With about 75% of the NFL teams better than the Steelers covering wide receivers, it seems like a fine time to bet on K.J. to boom against 8.5 projected points.
Julio Jones, WR, Titans v. Jaguars, 9 points (keep a check on his status to make sure he returns from IR and plays this week)
It seems blasphemous to consider Julio a flex player and barely even flexible. Almost 33 years old and oft-injured, the glory days of Jones are in his rearview mirror. What a ride, though. Julio currently sits at #17 on the all-time receiving yards list with 13,232 yards and only needs around 1100 more to climb into the top 10. But as for week 14, the Titans designated Julio to return from injured reserve and ESPN projected him for 9 points, so there is optimism he plays. The Jags offer Julio a good welcome back opportunity as they rank in the bottom third against wide receivers, but 10th against the run.
Alexander Mattison, RB, Vikings v. Steelers, 5.7 points
As I was writing this article, ESPN flipped its projections for Mattison from starting numbers to backup numbers on the news that Dalvin Cook is likely to play tonight. Cook is still a game-time decision, but ESPN must believe he’ll play as he’s projected for 16.9 points. The Steelers are 25th against the pass, but 29th against the run, and if the Vikings establish a lead, I can see Mattison stealing touches from Cook. Honestly, as great as Dalvin is, the Vikings don’t slow down a step with Mattison playing, so why not give Dalvin more time to recover? There’s always a chance (not that I’m hoping for it) that if Dalvin does start, he gets reinjured in the game. At 5.7 points, Mattison is probably my favorite flex boom play this week.
Good luck this week and I hope that your whole team booms into the fantasy playoffs that start next week!
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