The final week with byes is here! It might as well not exist with Washington and Arizona getting a breather.
Week 14 is a teaser of a full complement of games in the season’s final month. It is also the last week before Saturday games return to the NFL schedule.
Injuries continue to mount across the league, and as always, keep an eye out for updates to this piece leading up to each slate.
Do not forget to check out all of The Game Day’s Week 14 fantasy football content. There’s a lot of great analysis from the crew as we approach the fantasy playoffs.
Reminder: Use the Table of Contents to the right to easily navigate each section of the weekly DFS article.
Week 14 Thursday Night Football DFS: Patriots @ Steelers
The NFL lines used for TNF are current as of Thursday, Dec. 7, at 12:00 p.m. ET., courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook:
- Spread: Steelers -6
- Total: 30 Points
The Patriots injury report is the Ben Affleck smoking GIF of injury reports.
Out are OT Riley Reiff (knee), CB Shaun Wade (illness), WRs Kayshon Boutte (shoulder), Demario Douglas (concussion), and Rhamondre Stevenson (ankle).
WRs DeVante Parker (knee, $5,600 on DraftKings) and JuJu Smith-Schuster (ankle, $3,800) are questionable, as well as OT Trent Brown (ankle/hand) and DT Christian Barmore (shoulder).
The Steelers have fewer injuries. Kenny Pickett (ankle) and CB James Pierre (shoulder) are out. OLB Elandon Roberts (groin), OG Isaac Seumalo (shoulder), C Mason Cole (neck), and Najee Harris (knee, $8,400) are questionable.
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This game presents one of the lowest implied game totals in history. 30 points is less than what Dallas and Miami average per game!
Both teams are also playing with their backup QBs under center, which means a heavy dose of running the ball. This is well-known with New England, but the recent firing of Steelers OC Matt Canada has led to a stronger push towards the run for Pittsburgh.
The pass offense has only been used in 46% of neutral plays in two games with new playcallers. Considering how useful Harris and Jaylen Warren ($8,000) have been of late, the game script is not expected to change much.
It also does not help that the Patriots pass defense has somehow remained in the top 10 in 4for4’s schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed (aFPA) metric with rookie CB Christian Gonzalez.
One matchup that Pitt needs to exploit is George Pickens ($10,000) against Pats CB J.C. Jackson. Jackson has been horrendous since leaving New England (and returning). He ranks 117th out of 119 corners in PFF grading. The biggest problem with doing the simple and proper thing is Mitch Trubisky‘s ($9,200) willingness to ignore Pickens for Diontae Johnson ($9,800).
The Pats need to survive this game. Bailey Zappe ($9,000) isn’t it, and there is no price difference between him and Mac Jones ($9,000) if he gets benched. Aside from handing the ball off to Ezekiel Elliott ($9,400), Zappe will need to focus his attention to Smith-Schuster, who has a juicy slot matchup against CB Chandon Sullivan.
Sullivan is trying to take Jackson’s WOAT title, ranking 108th in PFF grading.
Favorite Thursday Night DraftKings Showdown Plays
Captain Jaylen Warren with Steelers DST and JuJu Smith-Schuster
This is going to be the chalk stack because of Warren’s big play ability and Pitt’s ability to get to the QB. New England is 32nd in ESPN’s Pass-Rush Win Rate metric.
Captain Ezekiel Elliott with Patriots DST and Diontae Johnson
Elliott is the only RB for New England that can carry a full workload and was utilized sans Stevenson in Week 13. A 25/75/2 line could, sadly, be the best tonight.
Captain George Pickens with Mitch Trubisky and JaMycal Hasty
Can we get a Pickens game to make TNF interesting, please? A few darts downfield from vintage Trubisky could flip the slate and bury the Patriots.
* Dart Throws/Cheap Options
RB JaMycal Hasty ($200)
The journeyman RB is the anticipated RB2 as he is utilized in two-minute and long down and distance plays.
TE Connor Heyward ($200)
Heyward still sees multiple targets per game; it’s just whether he can convert them. The TE2 for the Steelers has two or more targets in all but one game since Week 5.
WR Allen Robinson ($3,000)
Trubisky and Robinson played together in Chicago. This game has little to get excited about; at least hope for a one-time vintage A-Rob performance with his old QB1.
TEs Mike Gesicki and Pharaoh Brown ($1,000)
The seldom-targeted duo has shown up here and there this season, making them ideal Showdown plays and goose-egg candidates.
*Thursday Night Captain Picks
Jaylen Warren ($12,000)
I lean on Warren this week only because Harris has been battling a knee injury on a short week. Both will get work, but I doubt Mike Tomlin will push Harris unless the Steelers find themselves losing in the second half.
Ezekiel Elliott ($14,100)
I can argue that Zeke is the only trustworthy Patriot tonight. That’s how dire it is offensively for New England.
Mitch Trubisky ($13,800)
Being six-point favorites leads me to want to roster Trubisky at CPT. It is easy to forget that he is no stranger to rushing points and could be down two offensive linemen.
JuJu Smith-Schuster ($5,700)
I promise this is not a revenge game play. There is no guarantee that DeVante Parker will not see CB Joey Porter Jr., considering the lack of talent N.E. has at WR, which opens JJSS for more targets. His low aDOT also lends him to being a first-read target when trying to keep Zappe upright in the pocket.
Week 14 Main Slate DFS Showdown
DraftKings chose not to have a featured Showdown game from the Main Slate. We still have SNF and MNF coming!
Week 14 DFS Sunday Main Slate
Here are a few takeaways from Friday injuries and such before I get to names. The biggest news to pay attention to starting Saturday evening is the weather. Unseasonably warm weather, as well as precipitation, could affect the East Coast games. Wind may also change the outlook on a few games.
Remember, most wind and rain have little to no effect on gameplay; it’s the fire and brimstone weather that changes outcomes.
Numerous useful and bigger names have already been ruled out for Week 14, including Isiah Pacheco (shoulder), Christian Kirk (abdomen, IR), and, more than likely, Tyler Higbee (doubtful, neck). Expect more on Sunday.
Week 14 Quarterbacks to Target
Russell Wilson (@ LAC), Justin Fields (vs DET), and Baker Mayfield (@ ATL)
According to Brandon Thorn of Establish the Run, Tampa’s offensive line has one of the best matchups, thanks to the loss of DL Grady Jarrett. No A.J. Terrell in the secondary and a plus matchup against Falcons linebackers puts Mayfield in an ideal spot to save salary and target one of the best WR duos in the NFL.
Week 14 Quarterbacks to Consider
Brock Purdy (vs SF), Patrick Mahomes (vs BUF), and Josh Allen (@ KC)
Be careful with Purdy stacks this week, as it should go without saying that Purdy plus two pass catchers/Christian McCaffrey will be one of, if not the most popular stack. It could be a naked Purdy week.
Week 14 Running Backs to Target
Austin Ekeler (vs DEN), Bijan Robinson (vs TB), and Christian McCaffrey (vs SEA)
The last time Robinson was supposed to face the Bucs, he was ill and had one carry. With so many injuries and inconsistency for the Falcons, a double-digit target day in the passing game is very live for the rookie.
Week 14 Running Backs to Consider
Zack Moss (@ CIN), Kyren Williams (@ BAL), and Keaton Mitchell (vs LAR)
Moss is priced correctly after being the obvious chalk in Week 13, and the correct price increase may keep DFS players off him. The Bengals defense allows 106 rushing yards and another 35 passing yards PER GAME to the RB position, so there’s reason for hope of a bounceback.
Week 14 Wide Receivers to Target
Drake London (vs TB), Josh Downs (@ IND), and Mike Evans (@ ATL)
Downs is not the easy click, with Michael Pittman Jr. crushing the past three games, but Downs is only one game removed from 13 targets himself and could be in one of the few games that put up five-plus total touchdowns. Some of the big-name players need a salary saver to fit in lineups, and Downs is only $4,900.
Week 14 Wide Receivers to Consider
D.J. Moore (vs DET), Amon-Ra St. Brown (@ CHI), and Brandon Aiyuk (vs SEA)
According to Pro Football Focus, ARSB will likely see a lot of CB Jaylon Johnson, who has been a top-three corner. The problem for Johnson is he has been so good lately that he may be “due" for a rug pull with a double-move or sluggo route. St. Brown is as clean a route runner as there is, and if the weather is not as bad as expected, it should be one of your pay-up considerations.
Week 14 Tight Ends to Target
George Kittle (vs SEA), David Njoku (vs JAC), and Kylen Granson (@ CIN)
The Indy tight end situation is infuriating, but at $100 over minimum, Granson is a cheap TE with some history of fantasy production. He earned a rush attempt in Week 13, too. Playing more than 33% of snaps would also make this pick less shaky, but that’s what you get for the price.
Week 14 Tight Ends to Consider
Travis Kelce (vs BUF), Kyle Pitts (vs TB), and Gerald Everett (vs DEN)
Pitts has been the top TE for Atlanta in five of the past six games but trails Jonnu Smith and MyCole Pruitt in red zone targets. If you roster Pitts this week, know the risk once (if) the Falcons are inside Tampa’s 20-yard lines.
Week 14 DST to Target
Browns (vs JAC), Vikings (@ LV), and Jets (vs HOU)
All three have defensive line mismatches, according to Thorn, and weather could be in play for two games. While that may limit passing attempts, it also means turnovers if conditions are poor.
Week 14 DST to Consider
Ravens (vs LAR), Texans (@ NYJ), and Saints (vs CAR)
Only three teams allow more schedule-adjusted fantasy points to opposing defenses than the Panthers, according to 4for4. The game is in New Orleans, which is one of the tougher places to play.
Favorite Week 14 Dart Throws
QB: Desmond Ridder (vs TB)
RB: Clyde Edwards-Helaire (vs BUF)
WR: Marquez Valdes-Scantling (vs BUF)
TE: Stephen Sullivan (@ NO)
DST: Chiefs (vs BUF)
Week 14 Sunday Night Football DFS Showdown: Eagles @ Cowboys
- Spread: Cowboys -3.5
- Total: 51.5 Points
We have a great injury report for this game. Only Cowboys OT Matt Waletzko (shoulder) is out.
Dreams are made of a 51.5-point implied game total for Showdown, especially when one of the teams in this game has an offense on an absolute tear. Dallas averages 41.0 points per game at home and 39.7 ppg over their last three. Thank you for your service.
The Eagles are fourth in ppg to their credit but have run into issues with injuries (thankfully not this week) and a swiss cheese defense allowing opponents to stay in and, at times, dominate games. The Cowboys may be the last team they want to see after the 49ers came to Philly and took their lunch money.
It’s lame, but the Eagles have to win the ground battle with D’Andre Swift ($7,400 on DraftKings), who has had more unspectacular games than spectacular ones over the past two months. The former Lion only has two games averaging 5.0 yards per carry or more since his Week 2 and 3 outbursts, and his passing work has added value inconsistently.
Keeping the Cowboys offense off the field prevents a negative game script for Philly.
The Dallas passing attack is humming. It’s the running game that needed a jolt. Tony Pollard ($8,000) continues to plod more than dominate, which probably says more about his long-term usage. According to 4for4’s schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed (aFPA) metric, Pollard also faces the top run defense.
His usage may not matter as much this week, but his continued use in the passing game (50 targets, 42 receptions) at least leaves a fantasy floor.
Favorite Sunday Night DraftKings Showdown Plays
Captain CeeDee Lamb with Dak Prescott and Dallas Goedert
Obvious stack, especially with Dallas susceptible to tight ends.
Jalen Hurts with Two Pass Catchers
Hurts stacks will be popular, but Hurts with two will be one of the easier ways to get different, especially in positive Eagles game script builds.
Captain Tony Pollard with Cowboys DST and DeVonta Smith
Zig when others zag. Few will expect Pollard and the Cowboys to dominate together, and it has been clear that Smith can be the guy at receiver for the Eagles for single games.
* Dart Throws/Cheap Options
TE Peyton Hendershot ($200)
It’s a poor slate for cheap options, but Hendershot is ready to go after three straight weeks of practice after being designated to return from I.R.
TE Jack Stoll ($200)
Despite Goedert being active, Stoll should see enough snaps to have a glimmer of fantasy hope.
WR Quez Watkins ($2,400)
Watkins has speed to burn and should see a couple of deep targets to keep the Cowboy secondary honest. Don’t discredit his usage in the screen game, too.
RB Rico Dowdle ($3,000)
Dowdle’s salary is down $1,200 from Week 13’s Thursday night game, which makes him much more interesting despite a shift in work back to Pollard. Dowdle is as likely to run the ball as be targeted, much like his RB1 teammate.
Dak Prescott ($15,900)
Despite taking a blow torch to opposing defenses, Prescott is priced lower than Hurts because of rushing stats. Fine by me.
Jalen Hurts ($16,500)
Hurts CPT is an option, but it’s far from optimal aside from getting unique. These high-priced plays are a knock on builds.
Brandin Cooks ($10,500)
Cooks isn’t CeeDee Lamb, but in an effort to be different while attacking a terrible secondary, saving salary with Cooks makes a ton of sense.
Dallas Goedert ($8,100)
Rightfully priced down because of his forearm injury, there is little known how Goedert will hold up in a game. That doesn’t mean he won’t hit as the best play for Philadelphia. TE CPT has been a good play throughout the season, including this past Thursday night.
Week 14 Monday Night Football DFS
Before looking at the two games tonight, a few injuries to list that will matter for lineup construction:
- Titans - Out: DT Jeffrey Simmons, CB Kristian Fulton, and TE Josh Whyle
- Dolphins - Out: OG Robert Hunt
- Packers - Out: CB Jaire Alexander, Doubtful: LB Quay Walker
- Giants - Out: OT Evan Neal
A lot of players are questionable, so I will touch on some throughout.
Tua Tagovailoa (vs TEN) and Jordan Love (@ NYG)
I don’t see a situation I play either cheaper QB because Tommy DeVito takes too many sacks and Will Levis has the same pocket presence under pressure as me.
Tua gets a slight boost as the Dolphins offense is clearly pushing to get Tyreek Hill to 2,000 receiving yards. No Kristian Fulton also means plenty of targets for Jaylen Waddle.
Raheem Mostert and De’Von Achane (vs TEN), Tyjae Spears (@ MIA), and Saquon Barkley (vs GB)
The Dolphins offense can support a QB, two RBs, and two WRs nearly every game. I expect a lot of 1 Dolphins RB-Barkley builds with Spears as a salary-saver. Playing both MIA backs is the easiest way to get different.
Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle (vs TEN), DeAndre Hopkins (@ MIA), Dontayvion Wicks and Jayden Reed (@ NYG), and Jalin Hyatt and Wan’Dale Robinson (vs GB)
Your leverage spots come with Hopkins and Robinson. Hopkins has 20 more targets than any other Titans pass catcher with Levis under center. Robinson is $300 more than Hyatt on DraftKings and won’t get rostered as much with a low aDOT.
The slot receiver makes a ton of sense with the Packers expected to get after DeVito and Parris Campbell (knee) a late addition to the Giants injury report.
Chig Okonkwo (@ MIA), Daniel Bellinger (vs GB), and Tucker Kraft (@ NYG)
None of these options stick out as ideal. Kraft faces a top-10 defense in schedule-adjusted fantasy points allowed to TEs according to 4for4, Okonkwo has been a colossal disappointment, and Bellinger (illness) may not play. LB Quay Walker not playing is a boost to Bellinger if he is active. If not, Lawrence Cager is the punt TE.
Dolphins (vs TEN) and Packers (@ NYG)
Give me the sack upside in each game. Miami has been particularly impressive of late with a 9.28% sack rate on the season and 10.53% over their last three contests.
Monday Night Showdown Stacks
Instead of breaking down each game, below is stacks I am targeting for each Showdown slate.
Captain Tyreek Hill with Tua Tagovailoa and Tyjae Spears
The Hill receiving yard narrative is real, and the Titans secondary cupboard is barren of talent. Spears is a game script plug-and-play as a 14-point underdog.
Captain DeAndre Hopkins with Will Levis and De’Von Achane
Hopkins CPT is the only Titans leverage spot I’ll play. As much as keeping an open mind is necessary for Showdown, I cannot shake the lopsided talent levels of these two teams.
Captain Saquon Barkley with Jayden Reed and Jordan Love
Barkley does not need DeVito to get his 20-plus touches, and I expect to build Giants 2-4 lineups without the QB. DeVito is a 3-3 build play because Jaire Alexander is out for the Packers.
Captain Jordan Love with Two Pass Catchers
Love CPT and Reed CPT are my Packers leans. Green Bay’s passing offense has been one of the biggest changes this season, and if Aaron Jones (knee) is out, I would not expect a lot of progress to be made on the ground.
I could lean A.J. Dillon CPT is DTs Dexter Lawrence (hamstring) and A’Shawn Robinson (hamstring) are inactive.