Start 'Em & Sit 'Em is the ultimate look at the weekly NFL matchups and how they'll affect your fantasy football team. Sleeper alert features an under-the-radar player who could produce good numbers. Owners beware features a regular fantasy starter who could fail to meet expectations based on the strength of his opponent. Obvious fantasy starters like Aaron Rodgers and Adrian Peterson will not be featured. For your final lineup decisions, check our lineup rankings.
Start of the week
Matthew Stafford vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Stafford is on fire, throwing 13 touchdown passes while scoring 18-plus fantasy points in his last five games. An even more dangerous passer at home, he should feast on the Buccaneers -- their defense has allowed the fourth-most fantasy points (21.8 PPG) to quarterbacks since Week 8. (Maximum value: High QB1)
Targets/Touches: Oh boy-naya!
Colin Kaepernick at Washington Redskins (Mon.): Kaepernick has posted two straight poor stat lines for fantasy owners, but should bounce back against the Redskins. Their defense has struggled to stop the pass all season, surrendering 20.2 fantasy points per game to QBs at FedEx Field. (Maximum value: Mid QB1)
Eli Manning vs. Dallas Cowboys: Manning has been tough to trust on the field and in fantasy land, but owners who need a one-week quarterback fix should consider him. The Cowboys have had serious problems on defense, surrendering the second-most fantasy points (22.3 PPG) to opposing quarterbacks on the road. (Maximum value: Low QB1)
Joe Flacco vs. New York Jets: Like Manning, Flacco has been no walk in the park for owners. He ranks a mediocre 18th in fantasy points among quarterbacks. Still, keep in mind this week's matchup is favorable -- the Jets have given up the third-most fantasy points (21.8 PPG) to opposing quarterbacks on the road. (Maximum value: Low QB1)
Sleeper alert - Case Keenum vs. Jacksonville Jaguars: Keenum has been named the starter for coach Gary Kubiak this week, and a matchup against the Jaguars is favorable enough to make him worth a roll of the dice. Jacksonville's swiss cheese defense has allowed the fourth-most fantasy points (20.8 PPG) to signal-callers on the road. (Maximum value: Low QB1)
Sit of the week
Philip Rivers at Kansas City Chiefs: Rivers has recorded 15-plus fantasy points in just two of his last five games, and Kansas City has been very tough on quarterbacks -- their defense has allowed an average of 13.6 fantasy points per game to the position. Rivers has also thrown at least one pick in five straight games against them. (Maximum value: Low QB1)
Ben Roethlisberger at Cleveland Browns: Roethlisberger went off in the stat sheets last week at home against the Detroit Lions, but can you trust him to do it again in Cleveland? He's recorded just three touchdown passes in his last four road games against the Browns, and their defense is tough against quarterbacks at home. (Maximum value: Low QB1)
Alex Smith vs. San Diego Chargers: Smith has a favorable matchup on paper, but he's been the anti-matchup quarterback of the 2013 season. In fact, he seems to put up mediocre or worse totals when the opponent is favorable -- check out his poor numbers in games against the Philadelphia Eagles, Oakland Raiders and Buffalo Bills. (Maximum value: High QB2)
Carson Palmer vs. Indianapolis Colts: Palmer was a fantasy beast last week, scoring 24.5 points against the Jaguars. However, that was the first time he recorded 17-plus points since Week 1. The Colts have given up the third-fewest fantasy points (12.7 PPG) to quarterbacks on the road, so don't expect a repeat performance. (Maximum value: Mid QB2)
Owners beware - Robert Griffin III vs. San Francisco 49ers (Mon.): It's pretty tough to bench a solid player like RG3 when he's hot, and you shouldn't do it unless you have a viable replacement. Just keep in mind that the Niners have surrendered the fifth-fewest fantasy points (13.6 PPG) to opposing quarterbacks on the road in 2013. (Maximum value: Low QB1)