After the Houston Texans managed just 89 rush yards against the team with the league’s worst rush defense, the Denver Broncos, how much can fantasy football managers expect from RBs Devin Singletary and Dameon Pierce? We’ll let you know which running back is a better choice to start in your fantasy lineup for Week 14.
Should You Start Devin Singletary or Dameon Pierce This Week?
In the Pro Football Network Start/Sit Optimizer, our Consensus Rankings say Singletary is the player to start. His projected 8.6 points include 33 rushing yards, two receptions, and 16 receiving yards. That projected stat line narrowly outperforms Pierce’s projected 7.7 points.
My ranking for these two running backs aligns with the consensus. While Singletary hasn’t been great lately, the struggles of Pierce in recent weeks make it difficult to start him ahead of Singletary.
Fantasy Outlook for Singletary This Week
About three weeks ago, this was a no-brainer of a decision. Singletary had back-to-back 100-yard rushing games in Weeks 10 and 11, thanks to a combined 52 carries over that stretch.
But over the last two weeks, Singletary has just 14 combined rush attempts and has 54 total rush yards in Weeks 12 and 13. One of the concerning parts of Singletary’s production last week was the fact that in the previous week against the Jacksonville Jaguars, despite only 18 yards on the ground, he caught six passes for 54 yards.
But last week, he was targeted just once, finishing with one reception for four yards.
The Texans do have a good opportunity against one of the worst rush defenses in the league, the New York Jets, who rank 29th in rush defense and are allowing 136.1 rush yards per game. But fantasy managers are no doubt saying, “Big deal. Last week Houston faced the NFL’s worst rush defense, and that didn’t work out.”
It seems as if the best option of these two is to start Singletary and hope the Texans come around to giving him the ball a little more. The former Buffalo Bill has only carried the ball 15 or more times twice this season, and both times resulted in his only 100-yard rushing games.
Fantasy Outlook for Pierce This Week
In his first seven games before being sidelined for three games with an ankle injury, Pierce’s numbers weren’t exactly Pro Bowl-caliber. He averaged only 46.7 rush yards per game on 15.6 carries a game and 3.0 yards per carry.
However, in the two games since he returned from injury, his numbers have gotten worse. Pierce has carried the ball 20 times total for 55 rush yards combined, an average of 2.8 yards a carry.
It’s simply hard to get behind a player who has been held under four yards a carry in all nine games this season. Until he demonstrates he can put up even halfway decent numbers, he should be a pass in fantasy lineups going forward.
The PFN Optimizer projects Pierce to finish with 38 rushing yards, two receptions, and nine receiving yards.
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