Quarterback Matthew Stafford is an elite, high-volume passer in fantasy leagues. He seems to always put up big numbers but he's struggled mightily lately. He has one touchdown pass to go with five interceptions over the last three games. Fantasy owners have to take the good with the bad when it comes to performance. He's one interception away from tying his career high of 20. On the other hand, 67 more passing yards this week will get him at least 4,500 on the season for the third year in a row.
With the Lions officially eliminated from the playoff race, receiver Calvin Johnson (knee) will likely sit out this Sunday. That means Kris Durham might be worth starting against the Vikings as he'll see more action than normal. Durham only has six catches over the last four weeks, so he'd definitely fall in the category of potential surprise performer this week.
Much like the Lions, the Vikings are finishing the season looking towards next year. Even though there's nothing on the line for the team playoff-wise, franchise player Adrian Peterson (foot, groin) still hopes to play this week despite being listed as questionable. Even if he does suit up, he may not see a full workload. He's committed to a long-term contract so the Vikings don't want to risk his future for a meaningless game. That said, he did put together a career year coming off of ACL surgery last year so he should still produce this Sunday.
Speaking of the future, receiver Cordarrelle Patterson has a bright one for the Vikings. Patterson has a touchdown in four straight games. Two of them came on the ground and two through the air. He's probably the most versatile player on the team's roster and when the Vikings have a proven quarterback someday soon, Patterson will be a future fantasy star. Until then, he's worth a gamble this week in deeper leagues.