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Fantasy Football Week 14 Preview: D’Andre Swift, Garrett Wilson, Kenneth Walker (2022)

Dec 8, 2022

In addition to writing articles and appearing on podcasts, our internal analysts at FantasyPros also toss ideas back and forth in Slack throughout the week. Since these conversations would also be useful to fantasy managers, we decided to organize some of them and make them available to everyone.

Here is what Matthew Freedman, Pat Fitzmaurice, Derek Brown, Andrew Erickson and Joe Pisapia had to say in Slack this week as everyone prepared for Week 13 of the fantasy football season.

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Fantasy Football Week 14 Preview

Q1. What was your biggest takeaway or what surprised you the most from Week 13?

Pat: With Mike White at quarterback, the Jets’ offense is back to being a rich source of fantasy-viable players, just as it was early in the season when Joe Flacco was the QB. The Jets rolled up nearly 500 yards of total offense in their Week 13 loss to the Vikings and were effective everywhere but in the red zone. You can argue that the Vikings’ defense is trash — I wouldn’t disagree — but the Jets’ offensive performance was impressive nonetheless. Rookie RB Zonovan Knight had 118 yards from scrimmage, rookie WR Garrett Wilson had 8-162-0 receiving, White threw 57 times for 369 yards, and four different players had at least five catches. The Jets face the Bills this week but then have soft matchups against the Lions and Jaguars in Weeks 15-16. I think they’ll have eight fantasy-viable players those weeks: White, Knight, Wilson, Michael Carter, Corey Davis, Elijah Moore, Tyler Conklin and Greg Zuerlein.

Maher: Woah. Baker Mayfield released.

Maher: Do the 49ers dare make a waiver claim?

Pat: Interesting. Would not be shocking if the Niners claimed him.

DBro: If they are smart they will stay FAR FAR AWAY from Baker Mayfield. He’s been beyond dreadful this season ranking near the bottom in nearly every efficiency category. Brock Purdy isn’t great, but he knows the system and can at least play point guard. Mayfield can’t even deliver accurate passes. It’s like watching Jason Kidd with the yips.

Update: Baker Mayfield was ultimately claimed by the Los Angeles Rams and could start for them as early as Thursday Night Football against the Raiders.

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Q2. Week 13 was filled with injuries. What is one injury situation (and potential replacement) you are monitoring closely this week that could impact fantasy lineups this week or in the weeks to come? (Tyler Huntley? Travis Homer? Brock Purdy? Someone else?)

Pat: The Seattle RBs. Kenneth Walker has some sort of vague ankle injury, leaving his availability for Week 14 in doubt. The Seahawks have an appealing home matchup against the Panthers, but will Walker be able to answer the bell? If not, will the Seahawks feature Travis Homer or DeeJay Dallas (both dealing with injuries or their own), or perhaps Tony Jones? There’s fantasy goodness to be had here, but it’s not clear who’s going to provide it.

Erickson: I think Jerry Jeudy could have a very strong finish to the season with Courtland Sutton sidelined with the hamstring injury. Russ hyper-targeted him last week while he was playing on a limited snap share. KC has been beat by slot WRs all year long – hence why L’Jarius Sneed is so good in IDP leagues – so Jeudy has a chance to make a splash in Week 14.

DBro: Fantasy managers could be hurting after losing Jimmy Garoppolo, who has been a low-end QB1 numerous times over the last few weeks. Outside of the elites at the position, quarterback has been a rough landscape all season. Tyler Huntley should be a priority for these teams. While he was a steady QB2 for much of his starting tenure last season, his rushing upside offers him a weekly ceiling that many pocket passers can’t touch.

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Q3. Is D’Andre Swift back? Can fantasy managers trust him this week as they fight for a spot in their fantasy football playoffs?

Erickson: D’Andre Swift IS back. The Lions running back started Week 13 and led the team in carries (14 for 62 and 1 TD) over Jamaal Williams (11 for 35 and 1 TD).

He also was targeted 6 times catching 4 for 49 yards. 54% opportunity share. Swift out-touched Williams 18-to-11 and played the lion’s share of snaps (51%). Also saw 3 carries inside the 10-yard line to Williams’ 2. Swift’s 14 carries were the most he has had in a game since Week 1. He has also has a 19% target share in his last two games.

Wheels up.

And its gets better with a juicy matchup on deck:

The Vikings are a bottom-5 defense in catches, targets and receiving yards allowed to RBs.

Let’s Get Swifty.

Pat: Umm … maybe? I wish I were as certain as Erickson. Swift looked terrific in Week 13, rolling up 111 yards from scrimmage and a touchdown while playing 51% of Detroit’s offensive snaps, It was the first time he’d gotten at least a 50% snap share since Week 8.

It was also the first time Swift had gotten double-digit carries since Week 1. From Week 2 to Week 12, he averaged just five carries per game. Is it that Swift is healthier now after dealing with shoulder and ankle injuries earlier in the year? Or is the division of labor between Williams and Swift simply going to depend on game scripts?

I’m cautiously optimistic Swift will get another hearty workload Sunday against the Vikings, who have allowed the 13th-most fantasy points and sixth-most receiving yards to RBs. But Jamaal Williams isn’t going anywhere, and the Lions continue to annoy Swift and Williams shareholders by mixing in Justin Jackson, who’s played at least 16 snaps in each of the Lions’ last four games. There’s at least a small chance that Swift’s new-and-improved usage doesn’t stick.

DBro: I want to believe. I worry that Swift tweaked his ankle injury last week, which could lead to the same limited usage we have seen in previous weeks. After not showing up on the injury report in Week 13, he was limited on Wednesday. The good news for Swift is that the avenue to production against the Vikings’ defense for running backs is through the air, not on the ground. Even in a limited role, he could walk away from Week 14 with a standout day in the passing game.

Q4. Any final thoughts for the week? Any sleeper starts or popular players you’re fading in Week 13?

Pat: As if Week 14 weren’t tricky enough with six teams on bye and a bunch of injured players out of commission, we have to parse backfield usage for a handful of teams that upended their RB usage patterns in Week 13. (I’m looking at you, Dolphins Lions, Ravens and Rams.)

I’m eager to get another look at the Jets’ offense, this time in a more daunting matchup against the Bills. It’s amazing how much more fantasy-friendly that offense is with someone other than Zach Wilson at quarterback. The Jets were a source of fantasy goodness early in the season with Joe Flacco, and they’re trending that way late in the season with Mike White. Garrett Wilson is a must-start now, and 5-6 other Jets are potentially playable.

Sleeper start: Titans TE Chigoziem Okonkwo. He’s averaging 18.3 yards per catch and 11.0 yards per target this season. Granted, he’s only seen 25 targets, so the sample size isn’t substantial, but he could be in for an expanded role if Treylon Burks is out with a concussion.

DBro: My sleeper love list player for the week is Elijah Moore. The Bills’ pass defense strength is their outside corners, with Tre’Davious White back and Xavier Rhodes now inserted into the starting lineup. Taron Johnson has struggled all season to defend the slot. Moore’s playing time was increased last week as he was a full-time player. The easiest avenue for Mike White resides with targeting the slot this week. Moore could get peppered with targets.

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