Fix My Flex: Amari Cooper stepping it up in fantasy

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You've figured out most of your starting lineup. Quarterback? Check. Running backs? Check. Receivers, tight ends, kicker and defense? Check, check, check and check. But there's still that pesky flex spot. Do you go with that mid-round running back you drafted for this exact purpose? What about that wide receiver that has a favorable matchup this week? Then there are you masochists who play in superflex leagues. Godspeed to all of you.

If you're looking for help, you've come to the right place. Every week in this space I'll do my best to help you #FixMyFlex. Well, actually I'll try to fix YOUR flex. But that's not how the hashtag goes. I guess it just wasn't quite as catchy. Anyway, you've got problems, I've got answers. Here we go.

I think you answered your own question with the included gif. John Brown has a fantastic matchup, but the uncertainty at quarterback makes him a tough start in a key fantasy week. The last time Josh Reynolds entered our fantasy lives in a meaningful way, he had a pair of touchdown catches against the Packers but in general, his target volume has been too low to truly count on. Not to mention that Cooper Kupp's absence could mean a greater reliance on the tight ends. When Coutee was healthy (and not contending with Will Fuller), he was a big part of Houston's passing game. He should return to that status against a faulty Washington secondary.

Reynolds has a better matchup on paper ... though it's only marginally better when you start to look at recent performances from the Chiefs defense. The idea of starting a receiver against the Vikings secondary won't excite a lot of people but the Bears have been a quality offense in recent weeks. Miller's role is growing and he owns a larger target share than Reynolds right now, making the rookie a better option.

Don't look now, but Dak Prescott has quietly been pretty good for the past month notching 20-plus points in three of his last four games. That's helped ease Amari Cooper's transition to the Cowboys offense. Well, that ... and 18 targets in the past two weeks. Expect Cooper to see plenty more balls thrown his direction this week against a bad Atlanta secondary. We like the idea of Tyler Boyd because A.J. Green is gone but there are now so few fearsome targets in Cincinnati's passing game that Boyd will be easier for Baltimore to check this week.

This is a ceiling versus a floor play. Diggs has a tough matchup but always has the potential to explode in any given week. He's also likely to put up a bigger number than Cooper when all things are equal. If you are certain you can find big numbers from other players in your lineup, roll with Diggs and see if he can turn it into a super big week for you. If you think your matchup this week could be close, Cooper is the safer play, even if his totals end up being fairly muted.

I'm going to roll with Alshon here. His last couple of games have been underwhelming but this should be a week for him to rebound. The Saints secondary has struggled all season long, in part because New Orleans' run defense has been good. Also because teams have been forced to play from behind against them and spend a lot of time throwing. Either way, Jeffery should see plenty of chances to make plays downfield this week in your lineup.

The knee-jerk reaction is to say "Fitz. Raiders. Duh." That's understandable considering how accommodating the Silver and Black have been to opposing offenses lately. But Arizona's passing game has been far from efficient. Josh Rosen is completing just 55.8 percent of his passes and is continually under assault behind a bad offensive line. Combine that with a need to feed David Johnson and it might not be quite as profitable a day for Larry Fitzgerald. The Panthers have given up some big days to receivers in their own right and with Marvin Jones possibly missing this week's game, the pass-happy Lions could feature Kenny Golladay pretty heavily.

Fitz wins here because of target volume. The Cardinals are getting the ball to their veteran star, even while getting David Johnson more touches. The same can't be said of the Panthers offense. With increased work for Christian McCaffrey, Funchess isn't seeing the same level of opportunity. That could be the case again this week with the Panthers facing the Lions' terrible run defense.

When in doubt, go with the guy playing in the best offense. In this case, that's Mark Ingram. New Orleans' matchup with the Eagles could turn out to be a pretty high-scoring affair. That bodes well for Ingram's prospects of getting the ball -- especially if the Saints can grab a lead late in the game. Joe Mixon's matchup against the Ravens isn't very appealing and Lindsay could end up back in a three-way timeshare if Royce Freeman remains on track to play this week.

Tevin Coleman has been very good in a primary role but Dallas' defense has been a bright spot for the team this season. The Chargers are just an average defense against the run but the prospect of Lindsay splitting touches with Royce Freeman and Devontae Booker is worrisome. Meanwhile, Watkins has been a consistent flex option all season long. That shouldn't change in a game that is very likely to be the highest-scoring contest of the week.

Marcas Grant is a fantasy editor for NFL.com and a man who is happy to have his feet on solid ground. Send him your current states of being via Twitter @MarcasG. If you read all of that, congrats. Follow him on Facebook and Instagram.

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