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Week 14 Flex Rankings: Miles and Myles Apart

Myles Gaskin and Miles Sanders currently rank in the top 25 among running backs in fantasy points per game. They are also both 23 years old and in their second NFL seasons. But that is about where the similarities end for the pair of running backs. The paths they have taken to their current rankings are quite different, and they are trending in opposite directions as Week 14 approaches. If you had told me three months ago that Gaskin would be listed ahead of Sanders in my Week 14 Flex rankings, I would not have believed you. Hell, if you had told me that three weeks ago, I probably would not have bought it.

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Miles Sanders Output and Week 14 Outlook

Miles Sanders was a hot commodity during 2020 fantasy football drafts. Sanders eclipsed 1,300 total yards in his rookie season and seemed to have little competition for touches in the Eagles backfield. Even when a hamstring injury put his availability for Week 1 in doubt, fantasy managers were targeting Sanders at the 1-2 turn in most leagues. Sanders did indeed miss Week 1 but quickly made up for it upon his return. He averaged over 100 yards from scrimmage over his first five games. However, a 74-yard run in Week 6 resulted in an injury to his knee that cost him two more games. Sanders returned in Week 10 and seemed to reestablish himself rather quickly. Though he failed to hit paydirt, he averaged 88 total yards in his first two games back. His role seemed secure in the Eagles backfield. That has not been the case of late, however.

Sanders carried the ball just six times in a Week 12 loss against Seattle, netting a mere 15 rushing yards. Last week’s effort against Green Bay was arguably more disturbing. Facing a very weak Packers run defense, Sanders mustered just 31 yards on 10 carries. He has now gone four consecutive games without a single 15-yard run since his return from injury. His recent usage is even more alarming than his production. During Weeks 2-5, Sanders was on the field for 79.2 percent of offensive snaps and averaged 18.3 touches per game. Over the last four weeks, Sanders has seen action on just 59.3 percent of plays and has averaged 13.5 touches. Even if his usage increases to previous levels this week, his upcoming matchup is generally one that fantasy managers should attempt to avoid.

The New Orleans Saints allow the fewest fantasy points to running backs of any team in the NFL. New Orleans has been even more stingy than usual of late. Over the last month, they have allowed just 319 scoreless yards from scrimmage to opposing running backs. That includes a league-low eight receptions for a mere 45 yards. Perhaps the insertion of Jalen Hurts into the starting lineup will jumpstart Philadelphia’s slumping offense. However, given Sanders’ recent struggles and the Saints’ defense, it is difficult for fantasy managers to have a ton of faith in Sanders this week. He is currently a Flex play according to my Week 14 Flex rankings and maybe worth benching depending on the other options available on your roster.

Myles Gaskin Output and Week 14 Outlook

Myles Gaskin played just seven games in 2019. He ran for only 133 yards and seemingly entered the 2020 season a distant third on Miami’s depth chart, behind both Jordan Howard and Matt Breida. To say he was an afterthought during fantasy draft season would be putting it mildly. Or should I say, “myldly”. Summertime chatter that Gaskin had impressed the coaching staff went largely ignored, and Gaskin went undrafted in most fantasy leagues. It was a surprise when he led the Dolphins in carries (16) and targets (11) over Miami’s first two games, but many fantasy managers remained skeptical. Chan Gailey continued to put more trust in Gaskin, and the second-year pro answered the bell. Over the next five games, Gaskin averaged nearly 21 touches per game and was the RB15 over that stretch despite Miami’s bye week taking place in Week 7.

Gaskin suffered a knee injury in Week 8 and the team soon put the running back on injured reserve. The Cinderella story seemed like it could be ending. Salvon Ahmed took over and was a reasonable facsimile of Gaskin. Ahmed was the RB21 from Weeks 9-11, but a shoulder injury has forced him to miss the last two games. When Gaskin returned to action last week, he stepped right back into his workhorse role. Gaskin had a career-high 141 scrimmage yards on 23 touches. He did lose his second fumble of the year, so that could be an issue to keep an eye on. For now, though, it certainly appears that Gaskin is back atop the pecking order. He should be in line for another 20-plus touches this week when the Dolphins host the Kansas City Chiefs.

The Chiefs have allowed just eight touchdowns to enemy running backs this season, and Gaskin has only scored twice himself. Based on that, he is not likely to have the type of ceiling that elite running backs possess. However, Kansas City’s rushing defense is less than stellar. They have permitted the sixth-most rushing yards to opposing backs this year. Even if Miami falls behind and cannot commit to the running game, Gaskin’s workload should be stable. Gaskin is one of the most efficient pass-catching backs in the NFL. He has 32 receptions on just 37 targets this year. His four receptions per game are fifth among running backs who have played at least four games. Gaskin is one of the few backs in the league who is essentially game script proof. Because of this, he sits as a solid RB2 in my Week 14 Flex rankings.

Carolina Question Marks

The Carolina Panthers have had several positive Covid-19 tests over the past few days. Carolina put seven players on the reserve/Covid list on Monday, including wide receivers D.J. Moore and Curtis Samuel. The pair have combined for over 1,400 receiving yards so far this season. Their status for Sunday’s game has yet to be determined, so for now, they sit in rankings purgatory along with the likes of D’Andre Swift, Antonio Gibson, and Kenny Golladay, to name a few. If they can clear protocol before Sunday, they should be in most starting lineups. From Week 7 through Week 12, Moore and Samuel were top-12 fantasy wide receivers. Keep in mind that Moore is also dealing with an ankle injury, so he is no sure bet to suit up Sunday even if he can clear Covid protocol.

If Moore, Samuel, or both miss Carolina’s contest against Denver, the return of Christian McCaffrey should cushion the blow for the Panthers. The star running back is expected back from his shoulder injury in time to face his father’s former team. McCaffrey reportedly tweaked a quad during a recent personal workout and has been limited in practice thus far this week. Provided he is good to go on Sunday, he would immediately resume his lead back role and elite usage and fantasy production along with it. The return of McCaffrey would also spell the beginning of the end for the fantasy relevance of Mike Davis. Davis has a total of two rushing attempts in the three games McCaffrey has played this season.

Week 14 Flex Rankings

1Davante Adams (GB)at DETWR1
2Derrick Henry (TEN)at JACRB1
3Tyreek Hill (KC)at MIAWR2
4Dalvin Cook (MIN)at TBRB2
5James Robinson (JAC)vs. TENRB3
6Aaron Jones (GB)at DETRB4
7Austin Ekeler (LAC)vs. ATLRB5
8DK Metcalf (SEA)vs. NYJWR3
9Mike Davis (CAR)vs. DENRB6
10Keenan Allen (LAC)vs. ATLWR4
11Calvin Ridley (ATL)at LACWR5
12Travis Kelce (KC)at MIATE1
13Adam Thielen (MIN)at TBWR6
14A.J. Brown (TEN)at JACWR7
15Ezekiel Elliott (DAL)at CINRB7
16Alvin Kamara (NO)at PHIRB8
17Justin Jefferson (MIN)at TBWR8
18David Montgomery (CHI)vs. HOURB9
19DeAndre Hopkins (ARI)at NYGWR9
20Nick Chubb (CLE)vs. BALRB10
21Michael Thomas (NO)at PHIWR10
22Allen Robinson (CHI)vs. HOUWR11
23Chris Carson (SEA)vs. NYJRB11
24Stefon Diggs (BUF)vs. PITWR12
25Darren Waller (LV)vs. INDTE2
26Terry McLaurin (WAS)at SFWR13
27Tyler Lockett (SEA)vs. NYJWR14
28Robby Anderson (CAR)vs. DENWR15
29Robert Woods (LAR)vs. NEWR16
30Ronald Jones (TB)vs. MINRB12
31Amari Cooper (DAL)at CINWR17
32Chris Godwin (TB)vs. MINWR18
33Jonathan Taylor (IND)at LVRB13
34DeVante Parker (MIA)vs. KCWR19
35J.K. Dobbins (BAL)at CLERB14
36Cooper Kupp (LAR)vs. NEWR20
37James Conner (PIT)at BUFRB15
38Kenyan Drake (ARI)at NYGRB16
39Brandin Cooks (HOU)at CHIWR21
40Wayne Gallman (NYG)vs. ARIRB17
41Melvin Gordon (DEN)at CARRB18
42Jarvis Landry (CLE)vs. BALWR22
43Diontae Johnson (PIT)at BUFWR23
44Raheem Mostert (SF)vs. WASRB19
45Giovani Bernard (CIN)vs. DALRB20
46Mike Evans (TB)vs. MINWR24
47D'Andre Swift (DET)vs. GBRB21
48Corey Davis (TEN)at JACWR25
49Curtis Samuel (CAR)vs. DENWR26
50Josh Jacobs (LV)at INDRB22
51D.J. Chark (JAC)vs. TENWR27
52Marvin Jones (DET)vs. GBWR28
53Cam Akers (LAR)vs. NERB23
54Duke Johnson (HOU)at CHIRB24
55Deebo Samuel (SF)vs. WASWR29
56Jamison Crowder (NYJ)at SEAWR30
57Mark Andrews (BAL)at CLETE3
58Clyde Edwards-Helaire (KC)at MIARB25
59T.J. Hockenson (DET)vs. GBTE4
60JuJu Smith-Schuster (PIT)at BUFWR31
61Kareem Hunt (CLE)vs. BALRB26
62Tyler Boyd (CIN)vs. DALWR32
63Miles Sanders (PHI)vs. NORB27
64Brandon Aiyuk (SF)vs. WASWR33
65Antonio Brown (TB)vs. MINWR34
66Cole Beasley (BUF)vs. PITWR35
67J.D. McKissic (WAS)at SFRB28
68T.Y. Hilton (IND)at LVWR36
69CeeDee Lamb (DAL)at CINWR37
70Sterling Shepard (NYG)vs. ARIWR38
71Chase Claypool (PIT)at BUFWR39
72Marquise Brown (BAL)at CLEWR40
73Todd Gurley (ATL)at LACRB29
74Tee Higgins (CIN)vs. DALWR41
75Allen Lazard (GB)at DETWR42
76Breshad Perriman (NYJ)at SEAWR43
77Nelson Agholor (LV)vs. INDWR44
78Tim Patrick (DEN)at CARWR45
79Mike Williams (LAC)vs. ATLWR46
80Robert Tonyan (GB)at DETTE5
81Michael Pittman (IND)at LVWR47
82Jakobi Meyers (NE)at LARWR48
83Jamaal Williams (GB)at DETRB30
84Hunter Henry (LAC)vs. ATLTE6
85Nyheim Hines (IND)at LVRB31
86Devin Singletary (BUF)vs. PITRB32
87Evan Engram (NYG)vs. ARITE7
88Sammy Watkins (KC)at MIAWR49
89Keke Coutee (HOU)at CHIWR50
90Mike Gesicki (MIA)vs. KCTE8
91Russell Gage (ATL)at LACWR51
92Darius Slayton (NYG)vs. ARIWR52
93Jerry Jeudy (DEN)at CARWR53
94Chase Edmonds (ARI)at NYGRB33
95Michael Gallup (DAL)at CINWR54
96DeAndre Washington (MIA)vs. KCRB34
97Latavius Murray (NO)at PHIRB35
98Noah Fant (DEN)at CARTE9
99Leviska Shenault (JAC)vs. TENWR55
100Leonard Fournette (TB)vs. MINRB36
101Eric Ebron (PIT)at BUFTE10
102Rob Gronkowski (TB)vs. MINTE11
103Rashard Higgins (CLE)vs. BALWR56
104Hayden Hurst (ATL)at LACTE12
105Damien Harris (NE)at LARRB37
106Christian Kirk (ARI)at NYGWR57
107Danny Amendola (DET)vs. GBWR58
108Dallas Goedert (PHI)vs. NOTE13
109Logan Thomas (WAS)at SFTE14
110Frank Gore (NYJ)at SEARB38
111Damiere Byrd (NE)at LARWR59
112Zack Moss (BUF)vs. PITRB39
113James White (NE)at LARRB40
114Hunter Renfrow (LV)vs. INDWR60
115Gabriel Davis (BUF)vs. PITWR61
116Henry Ruggs (LV)vs. INDWR62
117Dalton Schultz (DAL)at CINTE15
118Lynn Bowden (MIA)vs. KCRB41
119Peyton Barber (WAS)at SFRB42
120Josh Reynolds (LAR)vs. NEWR63
121Jonnu Smith (TEN)at JACTE16
122Marquez Valdes-Scantling (GB)at DETWR64
123Christian Blake (ATL)at LACWR65
124Cordarrelle Patterson (CHI)vs. HOUWR66
125Golden Tate (NYG)vs. ARIWR67
126Anthony Miller (CHI)vs. HOUWR68
127Keelan Cole (JAC)at TENWR69
128Austin Hooper (CLE)vs. BALTE17
129Carlos Hyde (SEA)vs. NYJRB43
130Emmanuel Sanders (NO)at PHIWR70
131Phillip Lindsay (DEN)at CARRB44
132Jakeem Grant (MIA)vs. KCWR71
133Darnell Mooney (CHI)vs. HOUWR72
134Tony Pollard (DAL)at CINRB45
135Jordan Akins (HOU)at CHITE18
136Ty Johnson (NYJ)at SEARB46
137Demarcus Robinson (KC)at MIAWR73
138Willie Snead (BAL)at CLEWR74
139Chad Hansen (HOU)at CHIWR75
140Jalen Reagor (PHI)vs. NOWR76
141Jordan Reed (SF)vs. WASTE19
142K.J. Hamler (DEN)at CARWR77
143A.J. Green (CIN)vs. DALWR78
144Cole Kmet (CHI)vs. HOUTE20
145Kendrick Bourne (SF)vs. WASWR79
146Trey Burton (IND)at LVTE21
147Tyler Higbee (LAR)vs. NETE22
148Zach Ertz (PHI)vs. NOTE23
149Quintez Cephus (DET)vs. GBWR80
150Le'Veon Bell (KC)at MIARB47
151David Moore (SEA)vs. NYJWR81
152Irv Smith (MIN)at TBTE24
153Darrell Henderson (LAR)vs. NERB48
154Kalen Ballage (LAC)vs. ATLRB49
155Tyler Eifert (JAC)vs. TENTE25
156Zach Pascal (IND)at LVWR82
157N'Keal Harry (NE)at LARWR83
158Jared Cook (NO)at PHITE26
159Adrian Peterson (DET)vs. GBRB50
160Travis Fulgham (PHI)vs. NOWR84
161Mecole Hardman (KC)at MIAWR85
162Brandon Zylstra (CAR)vs. DENWR86
163Braxton Berrios (NYJ)at SEAWR87
164Devontae Booker (LV)at INDRB51
165Ito Smith (ATL)at LACRB52
166Collin Johnson (JAC)vs. TENWR88
167Mohamed Sanu (DET)vs. GBWR89
168Anthony Firkser (TEN)at JACTE27
169James Washington (PIT)at BUFWR90
170Gerald Everett (LAR)vs. NETE28
171Larry Fitzgerald (ARI)at NYGWR91
172C.J. Prosise (HOU)at CHIRB53
173Mo Alie-Cox (IND)at LVTE29
174Brian Hill (ATL)at LACRB54
175Samaje Perine (CIN)vs. DALRB55
176Greg Ward (PHI)vs. NOWR92
177Cam Sims (WAS)at SFWR93
178Cameron Batson (TEN)at JACWR94
179Gus Edwards (BAL)at CLERB56
180Jacob Hollister (SEA)vs. NYJTE30
181Drew Sample (CIN)vs. DALTE31
182Jerick McKinnon (SF)vs. WASRB57
183Malcolm Brown (LAR)vs. NERB58
184Steven Sims (WAS)at SFWR95
185Boston Scott (PHI)vs. NORB59
186Jordan Wilkins (IND)at LVRB60
187Will Dissly (SEA)vs. NYJTE32
188Tre'Quan Smith (NO)at PHIWR96
189Jalen Guyton (LAC)vs. ATLWR97
190Dan Arnold (ARI)at NYGTE33
191Jeff Wilson (SF)vs. WASRB61
192Alfred Morris (NYG)vs. ARIRB62
193Sony Michel (NE)at LARRB63
194Kerryon Johnson (DET)vs. GBRB64
195Mark Ingram (BAL)at CLERB65
196Devin Duvernay (BAL)at CLEWR98
197Cameron Brate (TB)vs. MINTE34
198Darren Fells (HOU)vs. CHITE35
199Benny Snell (PIT)at BUFRB66
200Dawson Knox (BUF)vs. PITTE36

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