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Fantasy football waiver wire, Week 14: 5 quarterbacks to target

We're into the stretch run of the fantasy season. You probably aren't in the fantasy playoffs if you're still dealing with a QB issue, but here are five guys who can possibly help owners in deeper leagues or owners who lost Aaron Rodgers.

Last week was all about the haves and have-nots for quarterbacks. Cam Newton, Matthew Stafford and Peyton Manning owners were likely laughing all the way to a W. Although, there were guys like Brandon Weeden and Josh McCown who had nice games. Here are a handful of quarterbacks who could have similar fates to Mr. McCown and Mr. Weeden.

Alex Smith (owned in 62 percent of leagues)

What is going on here? Alex Smith has put the ball up an average of 41.7 times per game over the last three outings. Of course, that has a lot to do with the fact the Chiefs lost those three games. Still, they weren't blowouts and were close down the stretch.

The Chiefs should be able to pull out a win against the Washington Redskins, but at least it's at FedEx Field to keep it close. This is one of the better matchups of Smith's season because the Skins can't defend the pass at all. They rank 31st in total points, 32nd in yards per attempt, 27th in passing yards allowed and 30th in passer rating allowed.

Smith should be a low-upside play for owners who don't need to take any chances this week. Preferably in a two-QB league or 14-team or deeper.

Jay Cutler (owned in 31 percent of leagues)

He has a goal to play in Week 14 after missing four of the last five games. The Chicago Bears have been able to move the ball fairly well in his absence, but not winning games in three of the last four suggests they're dying to get their starting quarterback in the lineup.

In case you missed Sunday's game in Minnesota, the Bears have some pretty awesome receivers. Everyone knows that Brandon Marshall might be the best possession receiver, but Alshon Jeffery became the eighth player in NFL history to put up two different 200-yard games in one season.

The point is that Cutler has a few ridiculous options. Plus, Matt Forte may be the best pass-catching running back in the NFL -- Darren Sproles is obviously in the mix.

The Bears get the Cowboys on Monday Night Football. That makes it tough on fantasy owners who don't have Josh McCown on their roster because if Cutler isn't announced as a "go," then a game-time call could really put them in a tight spot. It's a nice matchup, though. The Cowboys haven't been able to stop many teams with linebacker Sean Lee going down to an injury and Morris Claiborne also banged up.

Joe Flacco (owned in 52 percent of leagues)

This one is all matchup. The Baltimore Ravens get the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday. Minnesota allows the most points in the NFL, the third-most passing yards and the most passing touchdowns.

The Ravens have a terrible running game this year and it might be pointless to even try to establish that in this week's game. The Vikings are very vulnerable to the deep ball, which is an area of strength for the Ravens. Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones are fly-route specialists and they will be doing plenty of that on Sunday.

Flacco is putting the ball up a lot this year with 438 attempts -- ranking 10th in the league -- but his completion percentage just hasn't been there. That should be different against a weak opponent at home. He has a lot of upside this week, so if you're feeling frisky, Flacco could be your guy. That's assuming you don't have a stud at QB. As an aside, he ranks 28th in passer rating. Didn't he just get paid big dough over the summer?

E.J. Manuel (owned in 9 percent of leagues)

He turned in a solid game last week against the Atlanta Falcons with 210 passing yards, one passing score and a rushing TD. The Bills probably should have won the game, but a couple costly fumbles were the difference.

Speaking of receivers, he does have a few downfield options. Robert Woods, Stevie Johnson and especially Marquise Goodwin are all capable of breaking loose and making big plays. That could help the Bills this week.

A lot of people were comparing Manuel to Cam Newton during the draft season. Despite that being a ridiculous statement, Manuel does have the size and ability to make plays outside of the pocket. Cam is going off a huge week against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Manuel could have some success against them, as well. Plus, Darrelle Revis is hurt and their secondary could be in even worse shape.

Ryan Fitzpatrick (owned in 11 percent of leagues)

He had a bad game against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday. Fitzpatrick threw the ball 37 times, but could only muster 201 passing yards and one passing TD with three picks. On the bright side, he racked up 54 rushing yards and a score. That's been a trend. This is the third week in a row in which Fitzpatrick had at least 25 rushing yards, and he has two scores on the ground over the past four weeks with significant playing time.

One big problem was that he couldn't get the ball to Justin Hunter. The 6'4 receiver is his big-play guy, but he really could only get on the same page after a 109-yard day in Week 12.

He gets the Denver Broncos this week. The Broncos are obviously going to get their points at home, so Fitzpatrick should be looking at another day in which he'll have to throw the ball 40-plus times. He has big upside, and is a decent play in two-QB leagues.

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