And just like that, it’s NFL Week 14 and we’re gearing up for the Thursday Night Football Showdown DFS slate. We’ve got Josh Jacobs leading a white-hot Las Vegas Raiders team into southern California to take on the Los Angeles Rams at So-Fi Stadium. These teams are clearly moving in different directions right now, so chances are, you are going to want to lean more towards Raiders players for your winning DFS lineups. That’s not to say the Rams aren’t going to score, but the big question on everyone’s minds right now is which quarterback – John Wolford or Baker Mayfield – will the Rams start. Obviously, that has a serious trickle-down effect and finding any Los Angeles players you feel comfortable with is going to be a daunting task. Still, we know there are fantasy football points to be had and we’re going to dig them up.
Now before we begin, for those who are new to the process, please take a moment to understand what exactly you are getting yourself into by playing single-game Showdown Slates. We love to have some skin in the game, for sure, but these slates are, for all intents and purposes, a lottery ticket. Sure, there are times when the chalk hits and everyone shares in the prizes, but, more often than not, you need to hit on that random dart-throw that differentiates your lineup from that of the herd in order to claim the top prize. As a result, we encourage you to play responsibly and not over-invest. Stick to the GPP contests (single-entry preferred), don’t blow your whole bankroll, and understand that, unless you are a max-entry player, you should prioritize having fun.
OK. Lecture over. Let’s get to tonight’s action.
Las Vegas Raiders at Los Angeles Rams
Spread: Raiders -6.5
Weather: clear skies w/ temperatures in the mid-50s; winds blowing W at 5 mph
Las Vegas Raiders
- Josh Jacobs, RB – calf/quad (questionable)
- Andrew Billings, NT – lower leg (out)
- Jayon Brown, LB – hand (out)
- Rock Ya-Sin, CB – knee (out)
- Tyler Hall, SB – back (questionable)
Los Angeles Rams
- John Wolford, QB – neck (questionable)
- Lance McCutcheon, WR – shoulder (questionable)
- Brandon Powell, WR – illness (questionable)
- Aaron Donald, DE – ankle (out)
- Terrell Lewis, LB – back (out)
- Troy Hill, CB – groin (questionable)
- David Long, CB – groin (out)
2022 DVOA Defensive Rankings
Las Vegas Raiders
- vs Pass: 31st
- vs Run: 13th
Los Angeles Rams
- vs Pass: 28th
- vs Run: 27th
**Please note that players not listed below are not necessarily a complete fade and any player listed can certainly be used as the MVP/Captain. These are merely suggestions for players to use when setting Showdown lineups.
Davante Adams, WR Las Vegas Raiders
The Adams versus Jalen Ramsey battle doesn’t have the sizzle it once had, but it’s always a show when these two square-off. Adams has gotten the best of him both times they’ve met during the regular season and Adams has 13 catches on 16 targets for 237 yards. He doesn’t have a touchdown, but given this current run where he has four 100-yard efforts and seven touchdowns over his last five games, he’s a pretty safe bet for one tonight even with Ramsey crawling all over him.
Josh Jacobs, RB Las Vegas Raiders
It should be interesting to see if the Raiders limit Jacobs workload given the calf/quad issues and the short week. He’s been questionable over the past two weeks, but has still maintained his usual workload. In fact, Jacobs, over his last three games, has averaged 28 carries per game and has amassed 482 yards and three touchdowns. In addition to that, he’s also caught 11-of-13 targets for another 131 yards. If he gets his full workload, then he’s a must-play, but keep an ear to the ground with what they’re saying about his workload coming into tonight.
Tyler Higbee, TE Los Angeles Rams
If we are looking for a key spot to attack the Raiders with a contrarian Captain pick, then their struggles against the tight end are where we would go. The Raiders rank 31st in DVOA against the tight end, they allow an average of 55.3 receiving yards to them and they allow the fourth-most fantasy points per game to the position. Whether it’s John Wolford or Baker Mayfield under center, chances are there will be a lean towards finding Higbee downfield.
Mid-Tier & DFS Value Plays
Derek Carr, QB Las Vegas Raiders
The Raiders will be able to attack the Rams in a variety of ways in this game and with no Aaron Donald tearing into the backfield, Carr should have ample time to find his pass-catchers downfield. While he’s thrown three picks in his last two games, he’s also thrown 11 touchdowns over his last five while averaging 271.8 passing yards per game in that span. If he can throw for 250 and two scores, it’s a great day for him and your DFS Showdown lineups.
Mack Hollins, WR Las Vegas Raiders
While Adams and Ramsey duke it out for much of the night, Hollins will get to work over Derion Kendrick who will fill in for the injured David Long. Hollins does a great job as the complementary receiver to Adams and is averaging close to eight targets per game. If you can get a look at him during warm-ups, it’s even better as Hollins seems to have better showings when he lets the hair fly out all over. When he’s all braided up, he plays a little tight.
Cam Akers, RB Los Angeles Rams
Akers saw a season-high 17 carries last week and seems to have the lead in this backfield, so we expect him to be the guy once again. While the Raiders rank 13th in DVOA against the run, they are still allowing an average of 113.8 rushing yards per game and have given up 13 rushing touchdowns this season. If the Rams try a more conventional, run-first approach, Akers could get some decent work in tonight.
Kyren Williams, RB Los Angeles Rams
While the Raiders rank 14th in DVOA against running back pass-plays, we’ve seen them really struggle to contain some of the good ones. Williams is not Austin Ekeler or Travis Etienne, but he does bring a speed element to the game and if he gets the ball out in space, he could do a little damage. He didn’t see much action last week as Akers took center-stage, but maybe they were looking to use him a little heavier in this match-up.
Foster Moreau, TE Las Vegas Raiders
And you though the Raiders were bad against the tight end? How about the Rams? Whoa. Los Angeles ranks dead-last in DVOA against the tight end, allowing an average of almost 60 receiving yards per game to them. They are only allowing the 13th-most fantasy points per game to the position, but Moreau is averaging 34.6 receiving yards per game over his last seven and has two touchdowns over his last four.
Ameer Abdullah, RB Las Vegas Raiders
Using Abdullah makes sense if you believe the Raiders will need to limit Jacobs’ workload here on a short week. He was used more back in Week 12 when he caught a pass from Carr and carried it into the end zone, but last week was hindered by a hamstring issue. He is off the injury report and should be utilized some should Jacobs need a rest. Pass-catching is his specialty, so maybe he works a little better on Draft Kings than he does FanDuel.
John Wolford/Baker Mayfield, QB Los Angeles Rams
If you’re into contrarian quarterbacks, then maybe this is the play for you. Maybe not. It depends. First off, we aren’t sure who will be quarterbacking the Rams and it could actually be both. Wolford is dealing with a neck issue and is expected to test things out in pre-game warm-ups. If he is unable to go, word is that Mayfield, who was just claimed off waivers, would get the nod over Bryce Perkins. If you are a max-lineup player then maybe this is for you, but if you play one or two lineups, you may want to steer clear of this situation entirely.
Van Jefferson, WR Los Angeles Rams
He’s the new No. 1 receiver in this offense now that both Cooper Kupp and Allen Robinson are done for the season. It’s a tougher-than-expected match-up with Raiders corner Nate Hobbs, but the Rams move Jefferson around and should be able to get him up against Sam Webb with Rock Ya-Sin out. It really just comes down to who the quarterback is when figuring out if you want Jefferson in your lineup.
Ben Skowronek, WR Los Angeles Rams
He’s in the same boat as Jefferson is regarding how much people want to use him in their lineups. The match-up on paper is okay, but the problem is going to be the quarterback. We can’t even say if we like Wolford over Mayfield or vice versa because both are mediocre, at best. If you are using Rams receivers, Skowronek is your second-best option probably.
Keelan Cole, WR Las Vegas Raiders
While there isn’t much of a need for a third wideout in this offensive scheme, we could see Cole get a few extra snaps and targets if the Raiders play a strong game and stifle what’s left of this Rams offense. He hasn’t seen much action lately, but was running a two-targets per game average from Week 10 through 12.
Lance McCutcheon, WR Los Angeles Rams
We’ll see if he’s healthy enough to play. If he is then maybe a few targets come his way should the Rams be playing from behind. He’s more of a deep-threat type of receiver, if that helps in your decisions.
Brandon Powell, WR Los Angeles Rams
Another guy we have to see if he’s even going to play, Powell landed on the injury report with an illness on Wednesday, so if it is COVID-related, he could sit. If not, he’s got just as good a chance to score some fantasy points as any of the other Rams wideouts.
**Both kickers are very much in-play for tonight’s action. The lean is probably Matt Gay of the Rams as their offense could stall out plenty given the team’s quarterback situation. Daniel Carlson is always money-in-the-bank, so expect field goal attempts and extra-points made.
Dart-Throw DFS Bargains
Tutu Atwell, WR Los Angeles Rams
We’ve actually seen Atwell flash his speed on offense and we’ll look to him as our favorite Rams dart-throw. If Powell is out then he could see extra snaps both as a return man and a receiver, so if you need to save salary, this isn’t too bad of a play.
Zamir White, RB Las Vegas Raiders
Again, this comes down to whether or not you believe the Raiders will limit Jacobs’ workload. If they do, then White should see some carries and maybe, if the game turns out to be a bit of a blow-out, maybe he gets mop-up duty. We’ve seen guys find the end zone that way before.
For additional fantasy football insights and NFL Week 14 best bets, check out the latest episode of the Cash It podcast with Howard Bender and Adam Ronis:
Related NFL Articles & Tools:
- NFL Week 14 Injury Report
- NFL Week 14 Projections
- NFL DFS Lineup Generator
- NFL DFS Compare Tool
- NFL Week 14 Position Coaches