Koerner’s Fantasy Football Tiers: Week 14 Rankings for QB, RB, WR, TE & More

Koerner’s Fantasy Football Tiers: Week 14 Rankings for QB, RB, WR, TE & More article feature image
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USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Saints WR Michael Thomas (13), Packers QB Aaron Rodgers (12), Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey (22).

  • Sean Koerner sorts his Week 14 fantasy football rankings into tiers so you can kick playoffs off right.
  • Make all your start vs. sit decisions using his QB, RB, WR, TE, defense and kicker rankings below.

It’s Week 14, which means many fantasy football owners have reached the playoffs in their respective leagues. High-scoring games will be at a premium this week especially from some of the season’s best performers facing top-notch teams.

Consider these tiers a visualization of my early-week rankings. There will be a ton of volatility in how I adjust my rankings up until kickoff, so as always, be sure to check my updated rankings before making final sit/start decisions.

And if you’re looking for streaming advice, you can find my favorite streamers here.


Go To: QB | RB | WR | TE | K | DEF


Week 14 Fantasy Football Tiers & Rankings

Quarterbacks

Tier 1

Lamar Jackson (@ BUF)

Jackson returns to having Tier 1 all to himself this week. The Bills like to play a heavy zone defense to prevent big plays. However, it does expose them a bit against the running game as seen by their 26th rank in DVOA against the run (per Football Outsiders). Jackson is matchup proof, but this one helps boost his rushing outlook which is his most valuable asset for fantasy purposes.

Tier 2

Deshaun Watson (vs. DEN)
Aaron Rodgers (vs. WAS)
Carson Wentz (vs. NYG)
Russell Wilson (@ LAR)

Wentz predictably had a get-right game against the Dolphins last week. He should keep it rolling this week against the Giants and is a solid QB1.

Watson and Rogers are both massive favorites this week, so they might not have to keep their foot on the gas for all four quarters, but they have extremely high floors.

Tier 3

Jameis Winston (vs. IND)
Matt Ryan (vs. CAR)
Sam Darnold (vs. MIA)
Kirk Cousins (vs. DET)

I was a bit low on Darnold last week as it seemed like most experts had him inside the top-12. He had a letdown game against the Bengals last week, but has the ideal get-right matchup against the Dolphins.

Ryan Fitzpatrick is playing out of his mind right now, which has been helping opposing quarterbacks keep throwing against the porous Dolphins defense for all four quarters. Darnold is a low end QB1 for Week 14.

Tier 4

Dak Prescott (@ CHI)
Patrick Mahomes (@ NE)
Tom Brady (vs. KC)

While I think Darnold is an excellent play this week, if you don’t have a stud at quarterback you shouldn’t be starting him over Prescott/Mahomes.

fantasy qb rankings-week 6-2019
USA Today Sports. Pictured: Patrick Mahomes

I currently have their median projections a tad lower than Darnold’s, but we have to consider their floors to be much safer. If you are in the first round of the playoffs this week, you need to trust Prescott/Mahomes in your starting lineup and simply lower your expectations a bit.

Tier 5

Josh Allen (vs. BAL)
Jared Goff (vs. SEA)
Kyler Murray (vs. PIT)
Ryan Tannehill (@ OAK)

It’s much easier to trust Allen during the fantasy regular season, especially against softer opponents. But now with most leagues starting their playoffs this week, it’s much tougher to trust him in must-win situations. His rushing ability always helps raise his ceiling, but this week he faces his toughest test since Week 4.

The Ravens have been lights out defensively since they acquired Marcus Peters and have only allowed a multi-touchdown game to ONE quarterback this season (Mahomes). I would be making plans to sit Allen the rest of the season if you can help it — his next two matchups happen to be at Pittsburgh and New England. Hard pass.

Tier 6

Jacoby Brissett (@ TB)
Ryan Fitzpatrick (@ NYJ)
Baker Mayfield (vs. CIN)
Drew Brees (vs. SF)
Kyle Allen (@ ATL)

I would only want to be starting quarterbacks from this Tier in 2QB/Superflex leagues. Brees is a clear matchup based fade this week against the 49ers.

We have seen mobile quarterbacks give their defense some fits so I suspect we could see more Taysom Hill packages this week, especially in the red zone. That would be a huge hit to Brees this week.

Brissett, Fitzpatrick, and Allen make for matchup based fliers this week that are all great deep-league streamers this week.

Tier 7

Gardner Minshew (vs. LAC)
Philip Rivers (@ JAX)

Nick Foles played poorly enough to get rookie Gardner Minshew re-inserted as the starter. This is likely a permanent move for the last several games and they are probably regretting their $88-million deal for Foles just about as much as those who took David Johnson in the first round in drafts this year.

It’s not a great matchup against a Chargers defense that recently held Rodgers and Mahomes in check. They welcomed back their stud safety Derwin James from IR last week and will be a defense I try to avoid if I can help it.

Rivers is at risk of an in-game benching, so he should only be started in desperate situations this week. It might be worth stashing Tyrod Taylor in deeper 2QB leagues if he ends up starting for them down the stretch.

Tier 8

Derek Carr (vs. TEN)
Daniel Jones (@ PHI)
Devlin Hodges (@ ARI)
Jimmy Garoppolo (@ NO)
Mitchell Trubisky (vs. DAL)

Jones was a popular quarterback stash to take advantage of his fantasy playoff schedule. However, his poor play of late and now dealing with an ankle injury makes him hard to trust this week.

Hodges is a matchup based streamer in 2QB leagues this week. The Cardinals have allowed back-to-back 400-yard passing games and 300-yard performances in five straight games.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Devlin Hodges (6).

He doesn’t have that level of upside, but with James Washington in the midst of a break out and Juju Smith-Schuster potentially returning this week he could end up sneaking into the top 15 this week in a high tempo game.

Tier 9

Andy Dalton (@ CLE)

Dalton was given his starting job back last week after rookie Ryan Finley flopped in his first three starts. He came through with a solid game and led the Bengals to their first win and helped them avoid going 0-16 this year. I consider his presence to help boost the fantasy value of the Bengals skill players as opposed to being a stand alone play himself.

Tier 10

David Blough (@ MIN)
Drew Lock (@ HOU)
Dwayne Haskins (@ GB)

Blough was an emergency starter in Week 13 with both Matthew Stafford and Jeff Driskel ruled out. He came out in the first half firing and connected with Kenny Golladay for a 75-yard touchdown on his first completion.

He fizzled out a bit in the second half and I think the Vikings will have enough tape on him to shut him down this week. The only reason he is a potential emergency flier this week is because of his solid receiving corps. They alone can help elevate him to top 15 status this week, but it’s unlikely.


Running Backs

Tier 1

Christian McCaffrey (@ ATL)

There’s not much left to say about CMC other than he has Tier 1 all to himself again this week. He should bounce back from his poor 10.2 fantasy points last week with a big game here.

Tier 2

Dalvin Cook (vs. DET)
Ezekiel Elliott (@ CHI)
Derrick Henry (@ OAK)

Cook has a dream matchup this week as a 13-point home favorite against the Lions. However, he suffered a shoulder injury on Monday night and at the time of writing we have no idea what his status is this week.

This is a placeholder rank for him but I have been claiming all year long that Alexander Mattison as the top backup to own. He will be a top-10 (even potentially a top-five play) this week if Cook were to miss.

Tier 3

Le’Veon Bell (vs. MIA)
Leonard Fournette (vs. LAC)
Alvin Kamara (vs. SF)
Saquon Barkley (@ PHI)
Nick Chubb (vs. CIN)

Bell has been a bit of a disappointment this year, but has a premier matchup this week against the Dolphins. He can reward owners for sticking with him all year with a big game this week.

giants-vs-jets-betting-odds-picks-week-9-2019
USA Today Sports. Pictured: Le’Veon Bell

Chubb is also in an ideal spot. The Browns are 9-point favorites this week against the Bengals. I anticipate them to lean on Chubb heavily this week and feed him 20-25 carries to lock in what should be an easy win.

Tier 4

Aaron Jones (vs. WAS)
Melvin Gordon (@ JAX)

The Jaguars defense continues to cough up huge games to opposing running backs. Last week it was Peyton Barber putting up top-10 numbers. The main factor that appeared to start this run funnel defense was when Marcel Dareus suffered his season ending injury back in Week 8. I expect the Chargers to lean on Gordon/Austin Ekeler heavily this week with Rivers struggling as much as he has.

Tier 5

Todd Gurley (vs. SEA)
Josh Jacobs (vs. TEN)
Miles Sanders (vs. NYG)
Mark Ingram (@ BUF)

Sanders has been cashing in on Jordan Howard’s injury the last three games. Jay Ajayi has been nothing more than a change of pace back who may siphon about four carries a game.

Continue to roll him out as a high end RB2 in the meantime. There’s a slight chance Howard could return this week, so it’s something we will need to monitor. I would likely only drop Sanders to Tier 6 if Howard is good to go this week.

Tier 6

Devonta Freeman (vs. CAR)
Chris Carson (@ LAR)
James White (vs. KC)
Austin Ekeler (@ JAX)
Phillip Lindsay (@ HOU)
Benny Snell (@ ARI)
David Montgomery (vs. DAL)

Freeman needs to be treated as a solid RB2 this week. With so many backfields in flux and multiple backs involved in a committee, Freeman is one of the few backs in this range we can bank on about 20 touches.

The Falcons are 3-point favorites at home against a Panthers defense that just coughed up top 10 finishes to Derrius Guice and Adrian Peterson last week. Despite Rashaad Penny putting up RB3 overall numbers last week, Carson managed to put up the RB7 score on 24 touches.

The Seahawks run the ball enough to support two fantasy backs, so I would treat Carson as a solid RB2 while Penny should be viewed as a solid Flex option this week.

Tier 7

Devin Singletary (vs. BAL)
Joe Mixon (@ CLE)
Sony Michel (vs. KC)
Jamaal Williams (vs. WAS)
Kenyan Drake (vs. PIT)
Kareem Hunt (vs. CIN)
Rashaad Penny (@ LAR)

I mentioned earlier how tough the Ravens’ pass defense has been since acquiring Peters. It would be wise for them to give Singletary a massive workload this week, especially in the passing game. He ran a route on 88% of Allen’s drop backs last week.

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Buffalo Bills running back Devin Singletary (26).

For reference, CMC led all backs in Week 13 with 91% routes run and James White was third with 78%. The only thing that would prevent him from seeing five or more targets per game with that usage is the tendency for Allen to pull the ball down and run with it. But the potential for a ceiling game in PPR formats is certainly there this week.

Mixon also saw a spark in passing game usage last week with a 56% routes run per drop back rate, good for a 4/26/0 game receiving to go along with 19/44/1 on the ground. This type of usage will come in handy this week in a game the Bengals are expected to trail. He’s squarely in the low end RB2/Flex range for me.

Tier 8

Tarik Cohen (vs. DAL)
Patrick Laird (@ NYJ)
Duke Johnson Jr. (vs. DEN)
Jaylen Samuels (@ ARI)
LeSean McCoy (@ NE)
Carlos Hyde (vs. DEN)
Ronald Jones (vs. IND)
Jordan Wilkins (@ TB)
Derrius Guice (@ GB)
Jonathan Williams (@ TB)

Week 14 is littered with multiple RBBC type situations that will to create some tough sit/start calls. I am going to be pouring through news/film/data all week to ensure I’m giving you the best possible rankings to work with come sit/start decision time, so make sure you check my updated rankings before making those calls this week.

Tier 9

Jordan Howard (vs. NYG)
Royce Freeman (@ HOU)
Bo Scarbrough (@ MIN)
Damien Williams (@ NE)
Nyheim Hines (@ TB)
David Johnson (vs. PIT)
Adrian Peterson (@ GB)

Raheem Mostert (@ NO)
Peyton Barber (vs. IND)
Tevin Coleman (@ NO)
Alexander Mattison (vs. DET)
Matt Breida (@ NO)

Mattison would shoot up to Tier 4-5 range if Dalvin Cook is ruled out this week.


Wide Receivers

Tier 1

Michael Thomas (vs. SF)

Tier 2

DeAndre Hopkins (vs. DEN)
Davante Adams (vs. WAS)
Mike Evans (vs. IND)
Chris Godwin (vs. IND)
Julian Edelman (vs. KC)

Tier 3

Stefon Diggs (vs. DET)
D.J. Moore (@ ATL)
Tyler Lockett (@ LAR)
Tyreek Hill (@ NE)
Cooper Kupp (vs. SEA)
Julio Jones (vs. CAR)
Keenan Allen (@ JAX)
DeVante Parker (@ NYJ)

Tier 4

Amari Cooper (@ CHI)
Jarvis Landry (vs. CIN)
D.J. Chark (vs. LAC)
Calvin Ridley (vs. CAR)
Odell Beckham (vs. CIN)
Robert Woods (vs. SEA)
Allen Robinson (vs. DAL)
Alshon Jeffery (vs. NYG)
Courtland Sutton (@ HOU)

Tier 5

Will Fuller (vs. DEN)
Robby Anderson (vs. MIA)
Adam Thielen (vs. DET)
Christian Kirk (vs. PIT)
Kenny Golladay (@ MIN)

This time of year is when three things are inevitable: The days become shorter, people start adding pumpkin spice to their everything and Anderson starts dropping WR1 numbers.

nfl-week-6-betting-odds-spread-public-sharp-darren-rovell-vegas
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Robby Anderson

It has already begun with Robby dropping lines of 4/86/1 and 7/101/0 the past two games. He now draws the Dolphins in Week 14 and needs to be in everyone’s lineup.

Thielen should be able to return from his hamstring injury this week. He stated that he won’t return until he is 100%. I’m sure his owners appreciate that considering he tried to gut it out in Week 9 and bowed out after going catch-less in seven snaps. He will have a great matchup if he does return and should be treated as a WR2/3 this week.

Tier 6

D.K. Metcalf (@ LAR)
Michael Gallup (@ CHI)
Jamison Crowder (vs. MIA)
John Brown (vs. BAL)
Zach Pascal (@ TB)
Tyler Boyd (@ CLE)
Curtis Samuel (@ ATL)
Juju Smith-Schuster (@ ARI)
Tyrell Williams (vs. TEN)
Mike Williams (@ JAX)

Pascal has become the No. 1 weapon for the Colts passing game with Hilton/Ebron on the shelf. They face an extreme pass funnel defense in the Bucs this week, so expect the solid production from him to continue.

Brown has a brutal enough matchup this week to send him down to WR3 range for me. It’s worth noting that this is a #RevengeGame spot for him. Revenge game truthers scored a massive win last week when Brown’s teammate, Cole Beasley dropped 6/110/1 on his former team. This week could be Brown’s turn.

Smith-Schuster could return this week and has a juicy matchup against the up-tempo Cardinals. We will want to monitor his health closely and I would lean towards playing him only if you are desperate.

Washington has been showing huge improvements the past couple games and could be the  No. 1 option in the passing game this week even if Smith-Schuster returns.

This is such a critical range in my rankings that I can’t stress enough to use my updated rankings later in the week before making any final sit/start decisions.

Tier 7

Terry McLaurin (@ GB)+
Deebo Samuel (@ NO)
Marquise Brown (@ BUF)+
Marvin Jones (@ MIN)
James Washington (@ ARI)+
Dede Westbrook (vs. LAC)-
Larry Fitzgerald (vs. PIT)-
Brandin Cooks (vs. SEA)
Anthony Miller (vs. DAL)
Emmanuel Sanders (@ NO)
A.J. Brown (@ OAK)
Darius Slayton (@ PHI)+
Cole Beasley (vs. BAL)-

(+ High ceiling | – High floor)

There is a ton of upside in this tier for your WR3/Flex slot. As always, I think you should make your decisions in this range based on if you are a favorite/underdog. The idea behind going for high floor if you are a favorite is simply to avoid a dud (think of an NFL team up big switching to a conservative run-first game plan).

If you are an underdog, you want to take on more high risk/reward type players to give yourself a better chance (think of a no huddle offense throwing it deep). We are always at the mercy of variance, but these are strategies we can use it to our advantage.

Tier 8

Sterling Shepard (@ PHI)-
Golden Tate (@ PHI)-
Randall Cobb (@ CHI)-
Allen Hurns (@ NYJ)
Auden Tate (@ CLE)+
Kenny Stills (vs. DEN)
Sammy Watkins (@ NE)+
Corey Davis (@ OAK)
Mohamed Sanu (vs. KC)
Chris Conley (vs. LAC)+
Russell Gage (vs. CAR)-

Diontae Johnson (@ ARI)-
John Ross (@ CLE)+
Josh Gordon (@ LAR)+
Zay Jones (vs. TEN)
Demaryius Thomas (vs. MIA)


Tight Ends

Tier 1

George Kittle (@ NO)
Travis Kelce (@ NE)
Zach Ertz (vs. NYG)

It seems fitting that heading into the fantasy playoffs, the Big 3 that everyone targeted in Rounds 2-3 share Tier 1 this week. It’s been an up-and-down year for all three, but they are exactly the type of tight ends we want to have in must-win games.

Travis-Kelce
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Travis Kelce

Kelce faces the Patriots this week and there is some speculation that he will draw Stefon Gilmore coverage this week (not Hill). Either way, he has the talent to overcome any matchup, but we do need to lower our expectations in this spot.

Tier 2

Hunter Henry (@ JAX)
Darren Waller (vs. TEN)
Austin Hooper (vs. CAR)

Hooper is expected to return this week, which should be music to his owners ears. In what is a lost season for the Falcons, I would be shocked if they were rushing Hooper back at anything less than 100%.

If he suits up this week I would assume he isn’t going to be limited in any way. Henry put up in a dud in Week 13, but we can expect him to bounce back this week.

Tier 3

Evan Engram (@ PHI)
Mark Andrews (@ BUF)

Engram’s Week 14 availability is a bit unknown at the moment so he is a player I will be following closely this week to get a sense of what we can expect from him. I would still have backup plans ready to go just in case he’s held out again.

Tier 4

Dallas Goedert (vs. NYG)
Jared Cook (vs. SF)
Greg Olsen (@ ATL)
Ryan Griffin (vs. MIA)
Jack Doyle (@ TB)

Olsen suffered a pretty scary hit to the head last week. If he is unable to go this week, Ian Thomas would be an interesting streamer. I would likely slot him in Tier 7 and he would be more of a DFS flier this week than someone I would want to trust in the fantasy playoffs.

Doyle cashed in on the first game since Ebron’s season ending injury. Doyle ran a route on 91% of Brissett’s drop backs (tied for the highest rate last week). He should be a target monster going forward and is up against a pass funnel defense in the Bucs this week. Fire him up as a low end TE1.

Tier 5

Tyler Higbee (vs. SEA)
Michael Gesicki (@ NYJ)
Vance McDonald (@ ARI)

Higbee is another committee who benefited from his counterpart being out this week. He erupted for a 7-101-1 game against the porous Cardinals defense and will be in the streamer mix again this week if Gerald Everett is ruled out for Week 14.

McDonald was the other tight end who tied Doyle for routes run last week at a 91% rate. His recent box scores haven’t reflected just how high his usage has been lately. We could see him have a break out game this week against a Cardinals defense that has coughed up the most points to tight ends this year.

Tier 6

Jacob Hollister (@ LAR)
Kyle Rudolph (vs. DET)
David Njoku (vs. CIN)
Noah Fant (@ HOU)
Jimmy Graham (vs. WAS)
Jason Witten (@ CHI)
Irv Smith (vs. DET)

Njoku is set to return from IR this week. While there is no way you can trust him in your lineups this week, he makes an interesting bench stash if you are hurting at tight end. If he returns to his normal role this week he could pop up as a top-12 play next week when the Browns visit the Cardinals.

I have been banging the table for Noah Fant for the past few weeks not only because of his talent, but also because of my speculation that Brandon Allen would lean on his tight ends more, and that Jeff Heurman was out of the mix. With Drew Lock taking over as the starter and Jeff Heurman back in action it’s lowered my outlook for Fant this week.

Tier 7

OJ Howard (vs. IND)
Darren Fells (vs. DEN)
Jonnu Smith (@ OAK)
Dawson Knox (vs. BAL)
Anthony Firkser (@ OAK)
Jeremy Sprinkle (@ GB)
Nick O’Leary (vs. LAC)


This is the DFS-only tier. I would not want to be forced to start any of these TEs outside of extremely deep leagues that starts two tight ends. Having said that, my “who the hell is that?” dart throw of the week at tight end is Firkser.

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Tennessee Titans tight end Anthony Firkser (86).

Smith has been struggling of late and only ran a route on 52% of dropbacks with Firkser running at a 41% clip. There’s a chance the Titans increase Firkser’s role this week against a Raiders defense that has allowed the 5th most points at the position this year.

He is a GPP dart throw only, but one who will be 0.5% owned or less at a position where it really doesn’t take much to crush value.


Kickers

Tier 1

Dan Bailey (vs. DET)
Mason Crosby (vs. WAS)
Ka’imi Fairbairn (vs. DEN)
Justin Tucker (@ BUF)
Jake Elliott (vs. NYG)

Tier 2

Matt Gay (vs. IND)
Ryan Succop (@ OAK)
Wil Lutz (vs. SF)
Younghoe Koo (vs. CAR)
Jason Myers (@ LAR)

Tier 3

Austin Seibert (vs. CIN)
Sam Ficken (vs. MIA)
Chris Boswell (@ ARI)
Kai Forbath (vs. KC)
Harrison Butker (@ NE)
Greg Zuerlein (vs. SEA)
Adam Vinatieri (@ TB)
Daniel Carlson (vs. TEN)
Michael Badgley (@ JAX)
Joey Slye (@ ATL)
Zane Gonzalez (vs. PIT)

Tier 4

Brett Maher (@ CHI)
Josh Lambo (vs. LAC)
Robbie Gould (@ NO)

Tier 5

Eddy Pineiro (vs. DAL)
Jason Sanders (@ NYJ)
Steven Hauschka (vs. BAL)
Aldrick Rosas (@ PHI)

Tier 6

Brandon McManus (@ HOU)
Matt Prater (@ MIN)
Randy Bullock (@ CLE)
Dustin Hopkins (@ GB)


Defenses

Tier 1

Green Bay Packers (vs. WAS)
Minnesota Vikings (vs. DET)
Cleveland Browns (vs. CIN)
Houston Texans (vs. DEN)
Philadelphia Eagles (vs. NYG)

Tier 2

New York Jets (vs. MIA)
Pittsburgh Steelers (@ ARI)
Dallas Cowboys (@ CHI)
Baltimore Ravens (@ BUF)
Los Angeles Chargers (@ JAX)
Jacksonville Jaguars (vs. LAC)
Atlanta Falcons (vs. CAR)
New Orleans Saints (vs. SF)

Tier 3

Indianapolis Colts (@ TB)
Carolina Panthers (@ ATL)
Arizona Cardinals (vs. PIT)
Tennessee Titans (@ OAK)
Chicago Bears (vs. DAL)
Cincinnati Bengals (@ CLE)
New England Patriots (vs. KC)

Tier 4

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (vs. IND)
Los Angeles Rams (vs. SEA)
San Francisco 49ers (@ NO)
Denver Broncos (@ HOU)
Oakland Raiders (vs. TEN)
Seattle Seahawks (@ LAR)

Tier 5

Miami Dolphins (@ NYJ)
Buffalo Bills (vs. BAL)
Kansas City Chiefs (@ NE)
New York Giants (@ PHI)
Washington Redskins (@ GB)
Detroit Lions (@ MIN)

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