NFL Week 14 Fantasy Football Recap: New England Patriots vs. Arizona Cardinals

Glendale, Arizona, USA; New England Patriots running back Kevin Harris (36) runs the ball against the Arizona Cardinals during the first half at State Farm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

  • Injuries headline Monday Night Football: The Arizona Cardinals lost Kyler Murray for the season and potentially longer while the New England Patriots lost Rhamondre Stevenson and DeVante Parker all in the first quarter.
  • The Cardinals are healthier at wide receiver: Arizona had five of its top six wide receivers available and found a different way to use its receivers than expected.
  • Running backs lead the fantasy scoring: All three offensive touchdowns were scored by different running backs while no receiver finished with more than 80 yards.
Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

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New England Patriots @ Arizona Cardinals

  • James Conner: 15 carries, 85 yards, 1 touchdown, 6 receptions, 29 receiving yards
  • Pierre Strong Jr.: 5 carries, 70 yards, 1 touchdown, 2 receptions, 20 receiving yards

Monitor Rhamondre Stevenson‘s health: Stevenson suffered an ankle injury in the first half and was ruled out for the game during the second half.

  • The injury occurred late in the first quarter. After a trip to the locker room, he attempted to return in the middle of the second quarter, but he lasted four plays before exiting the game again.
  • Sixth-round rookie Kevin Harris took over and played the rest of the first-half snaps.
  • Fourth-round rookie Pierre Strong Jr. ended up with more second-half snaps than Harris.
  • Damien Harris would be first in line if Stevenson ends up missing games. He typically rotates with Stevenson on first and second downs but was doubtful for Monday night due to a thigh injury.
  • Veteran running back J.J. Taylor is on the practice squad, and he would likely be activated and part of a rotation if both star running backs miss next week.
  • Taylor played 17 snaps this season prior to Monday night compared to Kevin Harris' 13 and Strong's 10.
  • The Patriots have a favorable matchup against the Las Vegas Raiders next week. It could be hard to trust anyone except a healthy Stevenson or Harris in redraft since anyone could lead the team in carries. They could be good risks in DFS.

Monitor DeVante Parker‘s health: Parker left Monday's game with a head injury and didn’t return.

  • The Patriots were already without Jakobi Meyers, who was inactive after suffering a concussion last week.
  • Nelson Agholor took Meyers’ spot in the Patriots' starting lineup as their primary slot receiver.
  • Tyquan Thornton started the game at the receiver spot opposite Parker, as he has the last few weeks. Kendrick Bourne rotated in for Thornton on the second drive, and it seemed like they would be continuing a rotation.
  • Once Parker left the game, Thornton and Bourne became mainstays on the outside rather than rotational players.
  • Thornton played more snaps due to joining Agholor in two receiver sets.
  • The Patriots spread the ball around enough and don’t have a strong enough passing attack to trust any of these backup receivers, even if the starters miss more time.

Monitor Kyler Murray‘s health: Murray suffered a non-contact injury on the Cardinals' first drive.

  • Initial results suggest he tore his ACL, but that won’t be confirmed until Tuesday. This would not only end his season but potentially prevent him from starting Week 1 of 2023, depending on his recovery time.
  • Colt McCoy took over as the Cardinals starting quarterback. He’s started five games for Arizona over the last two seasons.
  • He was QB23 in both starts last season but reached QB8 in one of his starts in 2021.
  • Arizona finishes the fantasy season against the Denver Broncos, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Atlanta Falcons.
  • McCoy probably isn’t worth considering in single quarterback leagues but is in superflex leagues, particularly for his Week 17 matchup.

Greg Dortchs return, which mostly occurred on special teams: Dortch missed Week 12 with a thumb injury but was active for this game.

  • The Cardinals were still without Rondale Moore, who is dealing with a groin injury.
  • Dortch has been the Cardinals' primary slot receiver in any game Moore has missed prior to tonight.
  • Moore was injured in Week 11, and Dortch not only took over in the slot but also as an outside receiver in two receiver sets over A.J. Green and Robbie Anderson. Dortch played in 13 of a possible 17 snaps in two receiver sets in that game.
  • It seemed reasonable to believe Dortch was ahead of Green and Anderson on the depth chart because of this.
  • Arizona opted to use Marquise Brown in the slot instead of Dortch for most of the game with Green on the outside for three-receiver sets. Dortch didn’t start playing on offense until the third quarter.
  • The Cardinals have yet to have DeAndre Hopkins, Brown and Moore healthy at the same time. It’s possible that Arizona plays Brown in the slot and Moore out wide, or Moore only plays part of the game when that happens. Either way, it would hurt Moore’s fantasy value.
  • This is enough uncertainty that it is probably safe to leave Moore on the bench whenever he’s healthy just to see what happens.

Table Notes

Snaps include plays called back due to penalties, including offensive holding or defensive pass interference. The other three stats have these plays removed.

Targets may differ from official NFL sources. The most likely discrepancy would be from a clear thrown-away pass, where the NFL may give the target to the nearest receiver, while this data will not.

Carries are only on designed plays. Quarterback scrambles won’t count for the total number of carries in the game.


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