NFL Week 14 Thursday Night Football Fantasy Football Breakdown

Rams

Quarterbacks

Cam Newton is struggling at being a dual threat QB this season. Week 13 against the Chargers showed that he can still get it done on the ground, rushing 14 times for 48 yards and two TDs, but his passing numbers weren’t great. 12/19, but only for 69 (nice) yards and a TD. His longest pass went 15 yards. Now he faces a Rams defense that is second in limiting opposing QBs, and I honestly don’t think that Cam’s legs are going to be able to save him in this one. With the fantasy playoffs on the line, look elsewhere.

Jared Goff finished as the QB7 last week, but this week faces a Patriots defense that just got finished shutting down Justin Herbert (QB8 in points averaged per week) and so I don’t think their fifth ranked defense is going to struggle to much at containing Goff. I think that his receivers still have good value this week, but I don’t see Goff lighting up the scoreboard on his own.

Plays: I’d avoid both to be honest. Play Goff in DEEP leagues and in DESPERATE situations.

Running Backs

The RB Committee is back in New England. Damien Harris had 16 carries for 80 yards, Sonly Michel had 10 carries for 35 yards, and as everyone expected the most productive member of this backfield was Cam Newton with 14 carries for 48 yards and two TDs. James White who had gone off in the receiving game a week prior pulled in three receptions for a total of one yard. The concerning part about this backfield is yes, its unpredictability, but also the fact that the Patriots won their game last week 45-0 so you would assume that they would have ran the ball more and would have gotten more production, but it didn’t happen. This week, they will have the best matchup for the Patriots offense as the Rams defense is giving up the seventh fewest points to RBs.

Speaking of RB Committees, the Los Angeles Rams have entered the chat. Henderson, Brown, and Akers all played a role last week, but Akers lead the way with 16 points with Henderson not far behind with 15. Brown has been this way for weeks, but we had another week securing that he is going to be TD dependent for any fantasy value so I would stay away from him. The Patriots are actually putting forth a middle of the road defense when it comes to stopping RBs in fantasy, so I think that you can trust Henderson and Akers a little bit in this matchup.

Plays: I would start Harris, Flex Michel. Start Henderson, Flex Akers. Sit White, Brown (ha).

Wide Receivers

This WR group for the Patriots is almost as jumbled a mess as their backfield. In a 45-0 win this week, the only receiver to account for a TD was N’Keal Harry, but he had two receptions for 15 yards. In fact, the leading receiver this week for this team was Damiere Byrd who had 16 receiving yards. Cam Newton’s struggles through the air directly impact the value of these receivers, and even though I would love to see future star Jakobi Myers get back into his weekly scheduled programming of ass kicking, I don’t have confidence that it happens against the best defense in fantasy at limiting WRs.

It’s the Robert Woods show. It has been for awhile, and then Cooper Kupp has some great games to keep in close. I’d rank Woods above Kupp, but he still has value. I think the ship has sailed on Josh Reynolds, so hopefully you don’t need to worry about a deep league fill-in or anything. The Patriots are eighth at limiting WRs in fantasy, but Woods and Kupp (especially Woods) seems to find a way to have fantasy value no matter what.

Plays: Flex Myers at your own risk. Start Woods and Kupp.

Tight Ends

Let’s keep this short and sweet. The Patriots haven’t had a TE worth a damn since Gronk left. Keep it moving.

It took until week 13 and Tyler Higbee finally put together a performance like we have been expecting from him all season. He and Gerald Everett still finished as TE 12 and TE 18 respectively. Again, with fantasy football playoffs on the line, don’t risk it for the biscuit with these two.

Plays: None.

As always, good luck with your matchups this week (unless you’re playing me).

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