MIAMI, Dec. 7 (UPI) -- A huge week from your kicker and defense could make the difference between advancing in the playoffs or getting knocked out before you can even start your run.
Fantasy football's forgotten positions at the bottom of your lineup often give teams an edge. By selecting the right defense/special teams unit and kicker, you can find those points from an unlikely source, sometimes even with a last minute pickup in free agency. One of the most important tips at this time of year for kickers is to make sure that weather conditions don't hamper their production. Oftentimes an average player kicking in a dome is a better option than a stud kicking in a blizzard.
To help you figure out who to sit or start at the position, take a look at my top 20 defense/special teams units and top 15 kickers for Week 14. You can also view my add/drops for the week and more positional rankings in the links below.
The Minnesota Vikings travel south to face the Jacksonville Jaguars and are my top defense/special teams unit this weekend. After holding the prolific Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions defenses to fewer than 17 points in consecutive weeks, this defense is primed for another stingy showing.
Matt Bryant is my top kicker for Week 14. The Atlanta Falcons veteran knocked through three field goals last week and has 10 successful attempts in his last four games. He can be booked for double-digit fantasy points against the Los Angeles Rams.
The Detroit Lions battle Matt Barkley and the Chicago Bears Sunday. Any defense facing Barkley is a decent option, but the Lions have not allowed more than 19 points since Week 8. The Lions have also been getting turnovers, with seven in its last three games and have scored twice in that timeframe.
Stephen Hauschka should stay busy as the Seattle Seahawks battle the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Hauschka had a huge Week 13 against the Carolina Panthers, knocking through four successful field goal attempts and four extra points. He has 11 successful field goal attempts in his last four games. I expect plenty of scoring in this Sunday matchup.
|1||Matt Bryant||Atlanta Falcons||at Los Angeles|
|2||Cairo Santos||Kansas City Chiefs||vs. Oakland|
|3||Stephen Hauschka||Seattle Seahawks||at Green Bay|
|4||Dan Bailey||Dallas Cowboys||at New York Giants|
|5||Matt Prater||Detroit Lions||vs. Chicago|
|6||Justin Tucker||Baltimore Ravens||at New England|
|7||Stephen Gostkowski||New England Patriots||vs. Baltimore|
|8||Brandon McManus||Denver Broncos||at Tennessee|
|9||Sebastian Janikowski||Oakland Raiders||at Kansas City|
|10||Adam Vinatieri||Indianapolis Colts||vs. Houston|
|11||Dustin Hopkins||Washington Redskins||at Philadelphia|
|12||Will Lutz||New Orleans Saints||at Tampa Bay|
|13||Josh Lambo||San Diego Chargers||at Carolina|
|14||Caleb Sturgis||Philadelphia Eagles||vs. Washington|
|15||Mason Crosby||Green Bay Packers||vs. Seattle|
The Kansas City Chiefs are an interesting defensive option this weekend. This exciting unit shutdown Derek Carr in its last matchup against the Oakland Raiders. This time the game is at Arrowhead Stadium. In Week 6, the Raiders managed just 10 points at home against the Chiefs. With the importance of this contest, as far as playoff implications, I expect a strong showing from the Chiefs' stellar secondary.
Matt Prater has been scorching the uprights lately. The Detroit Lions kicker has made multiple field goal attempts in six consecutive contests. He has 10 successful attempts in the last three games and hasn't missed an attempt since Week 8. Prater, who plays indoors, won't be worried by weather and should see plenty of action against the Chicago Bears this week.
|1||Minnesota Vikings||at Jacksonville|
|2||Cincinnati Bengals||at Cleveland|
|3||Detroit Lions||at Chicago|
|4||Denver Broncos||at Tennessee|
|5||Arizona Cardinals||at Miami|
|6||Kansas City Chiefs||vs. Oakland|
|7||Seattle Seahawks||at Green Bay|
|8||New England Patriots||vs. Baltimore|
|9||San Diego Chargers||at Carolina|
|10||Miami Dolphins||vs. Arizona|
|11||Buffalo Bills||vs. Pittsburgh|
|12||Pittsburgh Steelers||at Buffalo|
|13||Green Bay Packers||vs. Seattle|
|14||Philadelphia Eagles||vs. Washington|
|15||Dallas Cowboys||at New York Giants|
|16||Indianapolis Colts||vs. Houston|
|17||Atlanta Falcons||at Los Angeles|
|18||New York Giants||vs. Dallas|
|19||Houston Texans||at Indianapolis|
|20||San Francisco 49ers||vs. New York Jets|