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Fantasy: Soar with the Seahawks in Fantasy Playoffs
Week 14 of the NFL season marks the beginning of the Fantasy Football playoffs for many participants. It’s also a very critical stretch for the Seahawks, and with so much on the line for them, Fantasy players can lean on the ‘Hawks for quality production, especially this week against the struggling Arizona Cardinals.
Of course, Marshawn Lynch is a must-start for the Fantasy playoffs, and should post very good numbers at home against the Cards this week. Lynch rushed for 85 yards on 21 carries in the first meeting with Arizona this season, and while he has averaged 67.7 yards per game in his career against them, Arizona ranks 24th against the run and Lynch should certainly perform well at home vs. Arizona with the Seahawks looking to bolster their NFC playoff positioning.
The recent strong play of Russell Wilson has boosted his top wide receivers as Fantasy players. Sidney Rice has been avoiding major injuries and producing well, and Golden Tate is enjoying a breakthrough campaign. Rice suffered a head injury on his game-winning TD catch at Chicago, but all signs point to him playing against the Cardinals, and he is looking like a very strong WR3 for Fantasy purposes again. Rice has caught five TD passes in his past five games and also scored in his first meeting with the Cardinals this year.
This was noted as a pivotal season in Tate’s career progression in the preseason, and he has admirably accepted the challenge and performed very well, making many key catches while displaying highlight reel athleticism. His improved and tenacious play has made him a popular Fantasy pickup in recent weeks. Tate has caught four TD passes in his past four games. He has joined Rice as a quality WR3 option for the Fantasy playoffs.
Wilson has gained much more Fantasy notice himself recently, and was a very popular free agent addition this past week. Wilson has nine TD passes and zero interceptions in his past four games and rushed for a career-best 71 yards at Chicago. Wilson provides excellent depth at QB for the Fantasy playoff run and is a must-start in two-QB leagues.
Of course, this is a very promising matchup for the Seahawks defensive unit. The Cardinals have the lowest-ranked offense in the NFC, and John Skelton returns as the starter, as the Cards continue to wallow through major QB issues. Skelton has two TD passes and five interceptions in six starts, and because of the passing issues, Larry Fitzgerald has been rendered a non-factor by many opponents this year. Widely regarded as a top Fantasy WR in seasons past, Fitzgerald is suffering through the most frustrating season of his career, with only one 100-yard game and four TD receptions.
The Seahawks will be without Brandon Browner this week, but still retain three quarters of their impressive starting secondary against a divisional opponent that has not won a game or scored 20 points since Week 4. Arizona’s offensive line has been a big issue this year, as they have allowed 48 sacks, so Chris Clemons and Bruce Irvin have much to look forward to, as do fortunate owners of the Seahawks defense in Week 14.
As you look around the league for other options this week, lock in Cam Newton at quarterback, as he has been performing at a very high level recently and looks like a must-start again. Tony Romo should stay hot in what could be a high-scoring game against the Bengals. Rookie Andrew Luck has exceeded some expectations this year and is a very good start as he faces Tennessee.
At running back, Bryce Brown has quickly become matchup-proof and should be locked into lineups for Week 14. Chris Johnson should perform very well for yardage purposes against the Colts. Keep rolling with BenJarvus Green-Ellis against a Dallas front seven that is looking less formidable recently.
Andre Johnson is a top WR start in a marquee Monday Night matchup with the Patriots. Pierre Garcon has been hot, but could disappoint as the Ravens take away the slant patterns he has been very successful on recently. Danario Alexander has become a must-start as a WR2, and Josh Gordon is a very good start as he faces Kansas City.
Marcedes Lewis has re-emerged as a quality TE since Chad Henne took over, and with Percy Harvin out, Kyle Rudolph has become a prime target for Minnesota and a very good start. If you are not lucky enough to have the Seattle defense this week, grab Buffalo, as they are looking very good, and the Browns are another high-quality option against the Chiefs.
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