Fantasy Football Week 14 Starts, Sits: Patriots Pass-Catcher Has Favorable Matchup

No defense is worse against tight ends than the Cardinals

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December 7, 2022

It’s time for one last push before the fantasy football playoffs, and many managers will have their postseason fate decided in Week 14 of the NFL campaign.

It makes getting the right players in the starting lineup all the more important.

With that, here are players to start and sit ahead of Week 14 in fantasy football:

Starts
Garrett Wilson, WR, New York Jets
The Jets rookie wideout has emerged with Mike White starting at quarterback — well, actually with anybody but Zach Wilson at quarterback. In five games without Zach Wilson this season, the first-round pick has finished as a top 10 receiver three times. He’s averaged 25 points in full-point leagues with White behind center the last two weeks. During that admittedly small sample size, Garrett Wilson ranks WR3 in average scoring and targets, being thrown the ball 23 times during those contests. The Buffalo Bills rank in the middle of the pack in points allowed to wideouts this season, but haven’t been great recently. Additionally, the Jets pass-catcher finished with 18 points when the two teams faced off in Week 9. He’s viewed as Yahoo’s WR14 entering the slate.

D?Andre Swift, RB, Detroit Lions
It’s time to get Swift back in starting lineups if you’ve been rolling without him. Swift played more than 50% of snaps in Week 13 for the first time since Week 8, only the second time since his return from a multi-week injury absence. Swift turned it into 18 touches for 111 yards and one touchdown, which was his best game since Detroit’s season opener. Swift and the Lions now get a favorable matchup against the Minnesota Vikings, who have allowed 400-plus yards in each of their last four games. Minnesota also allows the fifth-most receiving yards to running backs and sixth-most receptions to players at the position, a staple in Swift’s game. And this isn’t to say fantasy managers should sit fellow running back Jamaal Williams. Yahoo ranks Swift RB11 and Swift RB18 entering Week 14, and both should start.

Hunter Henry, TE, New England Patriots
If fantasy football owners don’t want to touch anyone on the Patriots offense — well, except for Rhamondre Stevenson — we can’t really blame them. New England, after all, has been horrendous lately with the Matt Patricia-called offense the ugliest part. But Henry still is worthy of consideration given the matchup against the Arizona Cardinals. No team has allowed more points to tight ends this season than Arizona. And it’s because the Cardinals have allowed more touchdowns (nine), receiving yards (880) and receptions (83) to tight ends than any other team. They’ve also allowed the second-most targets with 100 balls being thrown to tight ends in 12 games. So sure, the Patriots offense has been inept. But here’s to hoping Bill Belichick sees Arizona’s deficiency and exploits it on “Monday Night Football.”

Kirk Cousins, QB, Minnesota Vikings
Cousins will go up against a Detroit Lions defense that allows the most points to quarterbacks, and by a considerable margin. The Lions rank dead last in points and yards allowed this season with 400-plus yards allowed in three of their last four games. Cousins is viewed as QB9 on Yahoo entering the slate, and could be poised for a bounce back after struggling against a much better New York Jets defense last week. Of note, Cousins finished ninth in scoring in a Week 3 game against the Lions.

Sits
Brandon Aiyuk, WR, San Francisco 49ers
Seventh-round rookie quarterback Brock Purdy will make his first career start against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. And Purdy, who stepped in for the injured Jimmy Garoppolo in Week 13, is the biggest reason behind sitting Aiyuk. Simply, Aiyuk loses some of his luster in Week 14 given he’s set to play with a third-string quarterback. Aiyuk also will face a Buccaneers defense that has limited opposing offenses to less than 200 yards passing five times in the last eight games. He’s viewed as WR21 on Yahoo entering the slate.

Dameon Pierce, RB, Houston Texans
Pierce’s fantasy football stock has taken a massive hit during the second half of the fantasy football season, but especially in the previous three weeks. The Texans rookie, who was consistently finishing among the top 10 running backs during the first half, now ranks RB40 in average scoring since Week 11. His touches have dropped noticeably for the lowly Texans, who will go back to second-year quarterback Davis Mills in Week 14. And Houston will have a difficult matchup against the Dallas Cowboys, who have allowed the seventh-fewest points to running backs. The contest has the potential to get out of hand given Dallas’ defense, and those scripts tend to work against Pierce. It’s not an easy decision (Pierce is RB14 on Yahoo), but it might be the correct one.

Tom Brady, QB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The 49ers defense is buzzing entering Week 14. San Francisco owns the best defense with the fewest points and yards allowed per game. The 49ers also allow the fifth-fewest points to quarterbacks this season. Brady, on the other hand, ranks 15th in average scoring since Week 8 with 16.70 points in full-point leagues. All told, it’s a spot to avoid Brady, who hasn’t thrown for three or more touchdowns since Week 4. Brady is viewed as QB18 on Yahoo.

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Thumbnail photo via Jasen Vinlove/USA TODAY Sports Images

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