2023 Fantasy Football Week 14 Start Sit

by Mark Strausberg
2023 Fantasy Football Start-Sit

Welcome Fantasy friends and foes to my weekly Start and Sit advice column with the 2023 Fantasy Football Week 14 Start Sit.

No, wait. That's not right. That's how Dennis starts his columns. And I'm not Dennis. Because once again Dennis had to tag out and bring in a heavyweight. Or not, as Dennis might weigh more than I do. Whatever. The point is you are getting me, Mark, this week once again.

Did you miss me?

Frankly, I don't care. And Dennis doesn't either. We both agree on that. And while Dennis and I often both respect one another's opinions and fantasy expertise, my focus is a bit different for this article than his. I tend to drill a little deeper. So you might easily see a "start" recommendation for example for a player that a ten-team leaguer might ignore.

Bottom line, consider the context of your team and league situation while absorbing my 2023 Fantasy Football Week 14 Start Sit recommendations.

2023 Fantasy Football Week 14 Start Sit

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Start - Jake Browning, Cincinnati Bengals

I saw it. You saw it. We all saw it. Jake Browning looked spectacular on Monday Night Football. He showed he could throw the long bomb, the quick dart, and the touch pass. Burrow's understudy looked unphased by the pass rush. He ran when he needed to and turned potential sacks into positive yards. Browning even did all the little things right. He didn't look like a backup quarterback at all.

I could go on and on. I won't, but consider me a believer. Do I think he is suddenly Patrick Mahomes, or even in the same league as Joe Burrow? No. But he has legitimate QB1 upside.

I don't even care that Indy D has been pretty tough against quarterbacks this season. If Mother Nature doesn't act like a woman scorned this weekend, Browning could finish as a top-ten quarterback this week.

Other Deep QB Options to Start: Joshua Dobbs, Minnesota Vikings; Jared Goff, Detroit Lions

Sit - Geno Smith, Seattle Seahawks

I've been saying all year that the Dallas defense is one of the most overrated defenses in the league. So forgive me if I'm not impressed with Geno's 3-TD, 334-yards-passing performance last week. Let's see how he does against this San Francisco defense.

Oh, that's right, we already have. Two weeks ago, Smith faced the 49ers in Seattle and couldn't even muster 200 passing yards or a single touchdown. Do you think things will go much better for him this time, especially now going into San Fran?

Me neither.

Other Top 20 QBs to Consider Sitting: C.J. Stroud, Houston Texans; Jameis Winston, New Orleans Saints; Matthew Stafford, Los Angles Rams

Running Backs

Start - AJ Dillon, Green Bay Packers

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I was shocked and aghast to see Dillon ranked outside the Top 25 this week. Did the Giants' defense suddenly become a force over their bye? I don't think so. And I confirmed that, as yup, they are currently the 9th most generous team in giving up RB fantasy points.

Dillon has not been as efficient this season as he has in the past. However, he saw nearly 20 carries last week and had a respectable 4.1 yards per carry. He finished within the top 20 fantasy RBs last week and that was against a decent Kansas City Defense.

Expect him to better that mark this week against a Giants team that might have a new coach soon.

Other RBs Outside the Top 20 to Consider Starting: D'Andre Swift, Philadelphia Eagles; Tyjae Spears, Tennessee Titans 

Sit - Tony Pollard, Dallas Cowboys

If you think Pollard can do enough with less than 20 carries, go ahead and start him. Because I don't see the Cowboys giving Pollard a lot of action. The number one reason is the best way to beat the Eagles is through the air. Presuming the Cowboys take control of this game, they will do so by doing it with Prescott's arm.

The touchdown in three straight weeks was a nice little revitalization for his fantasy owners. Yet Pollard still hasn't cracked the century mark in rushing yards in over two months. Don't expect that trend to reverse against the Eagles, who have been the second-best team against fantasy RBs this season.

Other RBs to Avoid: Pittsburgh Steeler RBs; Chicago Bears RBs

Wide Receivers

Start - Rashee Rice, Kansas City Chiefs

When I saw that these two teams were playing each other this week, I couldn't help but think of their 42-36 playoff game nearly two years ago. If you like offensive fireworks, it's hard to picture a more exciting one in recent playoff history.

But unlike Buffalo, Kansas City's current WR corps has been almost completely overhauled since that game. And that includes the emergence of Rashee Rice. It hasn't been overnight, but Rice has steadily played more and more snaps each week, culminating with a season-high 69% last week. We know that Patrick Mahomes loves to spread the ball around, but Rice should continue to be the Chiefs' top WR this week.

I'm surprised Rice is not 100% owned. My guess is that will change after this week. The Bills’ defense has allowed at least two receiving touchdowns in three of their last four games. My brain agrees with my gut, which is telling me that Rice finds paydirt this week.

Start - Drake London, Atlanta Falcons

Yeah, this is admittedly, a bold pick. But I know many of you are on the playoff bubble and don't have the aerial weapons that your opponent has. And is this really so bold? I know the Atlanta passing attack hasn't exactly been all fireworks, but I suspect London ends his seven-game TD drought.

The last time London faced the Bucs, he caught six passes and I think he can do that again. And speaking of facing Tampa Bay, they are the fifth most generous team when it comes to giving up WR fantasy points. It might be scary to do so, but I wouldn't be scared to leap off that bridge with London this week.

Other WRs to Start: Courtland Sutton, Denver Broncos; Jayden Reed, Green Bay Packers; Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 

Sit-Calvin Ridley, Jacksonville Jaguars

No, this has nothing to do with the emergence of Parker Washington, although that is not hurting the sit argument either. But I am far more concerned about the Jaguars offense, especially the loss of Trevor Lawrence. I think Beathard is better than people realize, but he's still a step down from Lawrence. So first and foremost we will likely see far fewer quality targets going Ridley's way and that would be against any team.

Now add in the fact that Jacksonville will be traveling into Cleveland this week, and there's even more reason to leave Ridley on your bench. Cleveland is allowing the second fewest fantasy points to WRs. Ugh.

But we're not done. There are concerns that the Great Lakes region could see an "atmospheric river storm", making passing conditions in Cleveland literally going against the stream. So even if Ridley had peak Kurt Warner throwing to him and was playing a JV high school team, it still could be a very quiet game for him.

Sit - Noah Brown, Houston Texans

I know Tank Dell is out. And yes, I know that Noah Brown was one of the hotter pick-ups on the waiver wire this week. But even in a 16-team league, if you are considering starting him, your season is probably over already.

Nico Collins is clearly CJ Stroud's top target now and should be at a maximum for the duration of Dell's injury. But are we so sure Brown is suddenly the second option? The Texans still have Robert Woods who has had some pretty strong seasons. And certainly better seasons and more of them than Brown. But even if we ignore Bobby Trees, I'm not sure that youngsters John Metchie or Xavier Hutchinson don't see as many targets as Brown.

Even if Brown does see the second most targets, do you really like his chances against the Jets? They have one of the best secondaries in the league. No team is allowing fewer fantasy points to WRs this season.  I get the temptation to start Brown, but don't give into it.

Other WRs to Avoid: Alec Pierce, Indianapolis Colts; Rashod Bateman, Baltimore Ravens; nearly any WR playing this Thursday

Tight Ends

Start - Cole Kmet

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Kmet has very quietly had a very solid year. I didn't even realize how solid it was. He has 56 receptions for 482 yards and five TDs so far this season. That makes him the TE6 overall in PPR formats. Not too shabby.

He didn't do much against the Lions when he faced them earlier this year, but the Lions have become more susceptible to TEs lately. The Lions defense has allowed three touchdowns to opposing tight ends over the last two games. Not that they have been particularly strong previously, as Detroit is 24th in preventing fantasy points to TEs this season. That includes TEs of all shapes and sizes, including the 37-year old Jimmy Graham.

Let's just say I think Kmet is a much stronger option than Graham

Other TEs to Start: Chigo Okonkwo, Tennessee Titans; Gerald Everett, Los Angeles Chargers 

Sit - Taysom Hill, New Orleans Saints

Hill does a little bit of everything. But if he doesn't score, Hill will give you a whole lot of nothing. He's accounted for six TDs, which is nice. However, we are in week 14 so that's not even a TD every two games. That would be fine for a regular player, but Hill has all of 346 rushing yards through 13 games, even less receiving, and not even 100 yards passing this season.

That's simply not good enough to be TE1-worthy and certainly not top five TE this week like I've seen him in multiple places. And the Panthers are pretty good at shutting down TEs as they are the seventh stingiest team versus fantasy TEs. And that includes earlier this season when they kept him out of the end zone.

Just not worth it.

Other TEs to Avoid: Tyler Higbee, Los Angeles Rams; Tucker Kraft, Green Bay Packers

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