Fantasy Football Week 14 Waiver Wire: Finding replacements for Rob Gronkowski, Zach Ertz, Joe Mixon and more as the Fantasy playoffs start

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Making it to the Fantasy playoffs should be something to celebrate, and for most of you, that's the scenario. You're likely dancing around your house, taunting your friends who missed the playoffs and already planning how you'll spend the league's prize money if you win the championship.

For others, however, Week 14 comes with mixed feelings. While you're excited to reach the postseason, you also might be concerned with some of your pending lineup decisions, especially at tight end. 

Two of the best tight ends, Rob Gronkowski (suspension) and Zach Ertz (concussion), could be out this week. Gronkowski has appealed his one-game suspension, and we don't know Ertz's status after he was injured at Seattle on Sunday night.

But you have to prepare to be without Gronkowski and Ertz this week. And we don't know if Jordan Reed (hamstring) or Greg Olsen (foot) will play either, but you have to plan as if they are out also.

Thankfully, there does appear to be some tight ends available on the waiver wire who can help, including Cameron Brate, Stephen Anderson, Ricky Seals-Jones, Trey Burton and David Njoku. We'll get into that below. 

There also are the usual allotment of injuries we're dealing with at running back, including Joe Mixon (concussion), Alex Collins (migraines), Adrian Peterson (neck), Ameer Abdullah (neck) and Doug Martin (concussion). We hope Mixon and Collins will play given their recent performances, but the absences for Martin, Peterson and Abdullah have left us with quality replacement options, as you'll read below. 

We also have to deal with the one-game suspension for Steelers receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster, Some of the top replacement options for this week are Mike Wallace, Marquise Goodwin and Martavis Bryant, who scored a touchdown in Week 12 when Smith-Schuster was out with a hamstring injury.

And we have quarterbacks, DSTs and kickers to stream who can help if you don't like the matchups for the players on your team. Remember, this is the time to win, so you can cut someone who you might have been stashing for down the road. The down the road time is now.

We hope you are the Fantasy owner who is only celebrating and not the one fretting about an injury situation. But if you're stuck, we're here to help. 

Quarterbacks

Injuries of note: Matthew Stafford (hand) and Tyrod Taylor (knee)

Add if available in shallow leagues: Andy Dalton (72 percent), Case Keenum (76 percent), Jameis Winston (81 percent) and Aaron Rodgers (73 percent)

* - Add these players in this order, and they are owned in 65 percent of leagues or less on CBS Sports.

Priority list
36%
Jimmy Garoppolo San Francisco 49ers QB
Garoppolo fared well in his first start for the 49ers at Chicago in Week 13. He passed for 293 yards and completed 70.3 percent of his passes. He also had an interception, although it wasn't on an errant throw since Kyle Fuller yanked the ball away from Louis Murphy. Garoppolo didn't score any touchdowns thanks to five field goals from Robbie Gould, but he has an excellent matchup in Week 14 at Houston. The Texans allow the most Fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks, and Garoppolo is worth using as a streaming option. For those of you looking ahead to Week 15, Garoppolo plays Tennessee at home in another favorable matchup.
56%
Josh McCown New York Jets QB
McCown has been fantastic all season, but he's been exceptional as a Fantasy quarterback in the past two games. He has 62 Fantasy points combined against Carolina and Kansas City, and this is now seven games this year with at least 18 points. He has a tough matchup in Week 14 at Denver, which is getting back Aqib Talib from his one-game suspension last week at Miami, but the Broncos have allowed four of the past five opposing quarterbacks to score at least 20 Fantasy points. McCown isn't a must-start quarterback this week, but he's still worth using as a streaming option given his recent level of play.
27%
Brett Hundley Green Bay Packers QB
Hundley let us down last week in a major way given his matchup with the Buccaneers at home, and he only scored seven Fantasy points. But he's still worth a look in two-quarterback leagues this week with the matchup at Cleveland. The Browns have allowed an average of 20.3 Fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this season, and only Marcus Mariota in Week 7 and Blake Bortles in Week 11 failed to score at least 17 points against Cleveland this year. This is likely Hundley's last start this season with Rodgers expected to return in Week 15.
9%
DeShone Kizer Cleveland Browns QB
It's a risk to trust Kizer even in two-quarterback leagues since he only has four games this season with at least 19 Fantasy points. But the matchup against the Packers is a good one, and Green Bay has allowed an average of 19.5 Fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this year. And we love Kiser's weapons this week now that Josh Gordon is back, along with Njoku, Corey Coleman and Duke Johnson. He's not a bad streaming option in two-quarterback leagues.
38%
Eli Manning New York Giants QB
After the questionable decision to bench Manning in Week 13 at Oakland for Geno Smith, he's expected to start in Week 14 against Dallas now that coach Ben McAdoo and general manager Jerry Reese have been fired. The expectation is interim coach Steve Spagnuolo will give Manning his job back, and he could be useful in two-quarterback leagues against the Cowboys. Dallas has allowed an average of 20.3 Fantasy points to opposing quarterbacks this year, and Manning should be able to lean on Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram this week.

Drop list

* - If you need to make a move, here is a player you can drop for this week.

  • Tyrod Taylor (68 percent): He's dealing with a knee injury, and we don't know how long he will be out. Even when he returns, it will be hard to trust him in the Fantasy playoffs if he's less than 100 percent.

Running backs

Injuries of note: Joe Mixon (concussion), Alex Collins (migraines), Adrian Peterson (neck), Ameer Abdullah (neck), Doug Martin (concussion) and Damien Williams (shoulder)

Add if available in shallow leagues (in this order): Jamaal Williams (82 percent), Bilal Powell (78 percent), Theo Riddick (66 percent) and Danny Woodhead (70 percent)

* - Add these players in this order, and they are owned in 65 percent of leagues or less on CBS Sports.

Priority list
4%
Peyton Barber Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB
We'll see if Martin is able to play in Week 14 against Detroit, but it might not matter. The Buccaneers might make Barber the starter after his performance in Week 13 at Green Bay when he had 23 carries for 102 yards and four catches for 41 yards on four targets. It was the first 100-yard rushing game for Tampa Bay this year, and he has a tremendous matchup against the Lions, who have allowed a running back to score in 10 games in a row. If Martin is out, Barber could be a stud this week.
19%
Giovani Bernard Cincinnati Bengals RB
You can make a strong argument for Bernard being the No. 1 running back to add this week if Mixon is out, but I like the matchup for Barber vs. Detroit better than Bernard vs. Chicago. That said, I like Bernard a lot. We saw him play great in Week 13 against Pittsburgh after Mixon got hurt with 13 carries for 77 yards and two catches for 19 yards on three targets. He should get plenty of work against the Bears, but they have allowed just seven running backs to score double digits in Fantasy points in standard leagues this year. Still, Bernard is a solid No. 2 running back in all formats in Week 14 if Mixon is out.
10%
Mike Davis Seattle Seahawks RB
Davis came back from his one-game absence with a groin injury in Week 13 against Philadelphia and looked good with 16 carries for 64 yards and four catches for 37 yards on four targets. Davis is Seattle's guy, clearly ahead of J.D. McKissic, Thomas Rawls and Eddie Lacy, and the only thing that could potentially hurt Davis is Chris Carson (12 percent) coming back from his broken leg. We don't expect that to happen in Week 14 at Jacksonville, and Davis should be considered a potential starting running back or flex option given his recent level of play.
65%
Matt Forte New York Jets RB
Forte is part of a three-headed backfield with Bilal Powell and Elijah McGuire, and I like Powell better than Forte this week. But Forte still has the chance to be a flex option against the Broncos, who have been awful against running backs of late with 10 touchdowns allowed in their past five games. If Derek Wolfe (neck) and Domata Peko (knee) are out then the Jets running game should be great, making Powell a potential starter and Forte a strong flex option.
3%
Kerwynn Williams Arizona Cardinals RB
Williams played great in Week 13 against the Rams with Peterson out with 16 carries for 97 yards. We don't know if Peterson will return this week, but Williams could be a flex option against the Titans in Week 14. Tennessee has a good run defense and allows the seventh-fewest Fantasy points to opposing running backs this year, but Williams would be looking at a heavy workload if Peterson can't play. That's makes him worth adding in the majority of leagues.
0%
Tion Green Detroit Lions RB
Green and Riddick played well with Abdullah out last week at Baltimore with 11 carries for 51 yards and a touchdown. Riddick added nine carries for 21 yards and a touchdown and five catches for 41 yards on five targets. It's not a bad matchup for the Lions at Tampa Bay since the Buccaneers allow the fifth-most Fantasy points to opposing running backs, but Detroit could be without Stafford, which would likely impact the running game in a negative way. Still, if Abdullah is out again then I would consider Green as a flex option in Week 14 given the matchup with Tampa Bay.

Drop list

* - If you need to make a move, these are players you can drop for this week.

  • Ameer Abdullah (94 percent): Even if he does return in Week 14 it will be hard to trust him, and the Lions should give more work to Green and Riddick after how they played in Week 13 against the Ravens. 
  • Doug Martin (87 percent): Like I said about Barber, the Buccaneers should lean on him more than Martin even if he's back in Week 14. Barber was able to outperform a mediocre offensive line for Tampa Bay in Week 13 at Green Bay, and Martin has struggled for consistent production all season. 
  • Devontae Booker (74 percent): It seems that barring an injury to C.J. Anderson, Booker will never become a player Fantasy owners can rely on this year. Anderson continues to get the majority of touches, and this Broncos offense has been atrocious of late, making it hard to trust a backup running back like Booker. 

Wide receivers

Injuries of note: Devin Funchess (shoulder), Rishard Matthews (hamstring), Amari Cooper (concussion/ankle), Robert Woods (shoulder), Kelvin Benjamin (knee), Will Fuller (ribs), Chris Hogan (shoulder), Allen Hurns (ankle), John Brown (toe), Mike Williams (knee), Braxton Miller (concussion) and Bruce Ellington (hamstring)

Add if available in shallow leagues (in this order): Nelson Agholor (78 percent), Kenny Stills (70 percent), Robert Woods (73 percent) and Rishard Matthews (73 percent)

* - Add these players in this order, and they are owned in 65 percent of leagues or less on CBS Sports.

Priority list
47%
Mike Wallace Baltimore Ravens WR
Wallace has emerged as the No. 1 receiver for the Ravens, and he's playing well of late with either a touchdown or 100 receiving yards in three of his past four games. He's facing a Steelers defense that has struggled with receivers of late, with nine guys either gaining 80 receiving yards or scoring a touchdown in the past five games. And Wallace, a former Steelers standout, had six catches for 55 yards and a touchdown on 10 targets against Pittsburgh in Week 4. He's worth starting in the majority of leagues in Week 14.
36%
Marquise Goodwin San Francisco 49ers WR
Goodwin was excellent in his first game with Garoppolo in Week 13 at Chicago. He had eight catches for 99 yards on eight targets, and he has a great matchup in Week 14 at Houston since the Texans allow the eighth-most Fantasy points to opposing receivers. Goodwin has at least seven Fantasy points in a standard league in each of his past three games, and he's worth trusting as a high-end No. 3 receiver in the majority of leagues in Week 14.
56%
Martavis Bryant Pittsburgh Steelers WR
Bryant gets a big boost this week with Smith-Schuster suspended. We already saw Bryant play well when Smith-Schuster was out in Week 12 against Green Bay with a hamstring injury, and he had four catches for 40 yards and a touchdown on six targets against the Packers. I expect Ben Roethlisberger to play well against the Ravens this week with cornerback Jimmy Smith (Achilles) out, and Bryant had three catches for 44 yards and two touchdowns against Baltimore in 2014 in another game Smith missed. Bryant has the chance to be a top-20 Fantasy receiver this week.
63%
Jermaine Kearse New York Jets WR
Kearse has played great of late, and hopefully he will keep it going for another week at Denver. Just keep in mind the Broncos will be getting Talib back from suspension. But Kearse comes into Week 14 with 16 catches for 262 yards and a touchdown on 21 targets in his past two games against Carolina and Kansas City, and he and Robby Anderson have formed a formidable tandem. Kearse is worth using as a No. 3 Fantasy receiver this week.
36%
Dede Westbrook Jacksonville Jaguars WR
Westbrook is still looking for his first NFL touchdown, but he's played well of late prior to Week 14 against Seattle. It's a tough matchup against the Seahawks, but Westbrook has 12 catches for 119 yards on 19 targets in his past two games against Arizona and Indianapolis. He closes the season with strong matchups against Houston in Week 15 and at San Francisco in Week 16, so he could be a difference maker in those two games. For this week, Westbrook is just a No. 3 Fantasy receiver against Seattle at home.
11%
Dontrelle Inman Chicago Bears WR
Inman finally scored his first touchdown of the season in Week 13 against San Francisco, but he only had two catches for 21 yards on two targets. Still, he now has at least eight Fantasy points in a standard league in two of four games since joining the Bears. He would only be a No. 3 Fantasy receiver at best in Week 14 at Cincinnati, but in deeper leagues he should be added if you're stuck this week.
2%
Ryan Grant Washington Redskins WR
Grant was Washington's best receiver in Week 9 at Dallas with five catches for 76 yards and a touchdown on nine targets, and he's now scored at least 11 Fantasy points in a standard league in two of his past three games. I still consider Jamison Crowder as the No. 1 option in this passing game, but Grant is likely the second-best receiver, ahead of Josh Doctson . He doesn't have a great matchup in Week 14 at the Chargers, but Grant could be useful in Week 15 against Arizona.
1%
Trent Taylor San Francisco 49ers WR
Taylor is someone to keep an eye on given his performance with Garoppolo in Week 13 at Chicago. Taylor had six targets and finished with six catches for 92 yards, and he has a great matchup in Week 14 at Houston. He follows that up with another strong matchup in Week 15 against Tennessee, and we could see Taylor emerge as a No. 3 Fantasy receiver down the stretch.
5%
Cordarrelle Patterson Oakland Raiders WR
Patterson is only worth a look if Cooper remains out in Week 14 at Kansas City. He played well in Week 13 against the Giants with Cooper and Michael Crabtree (suspension) out, and Patterson finished with four catches for 97 yards on four targets. His value will be minimal if Cooper plays, but he's worth a flier in deeper leagues since Kansas City is tied with Tampa Bay for the most Fantasy points allowed to opposing receivers this year.

Drop list

* - If you need to make a move, these are players you can drop for this week. 

  • Emmanuel Sanders (94 percent): The Broncos are bad on offense, and even a good matchup at home against the Jets isn't enough to make me trust Sanders. He has two games this season with double digits in Fantasy points and has combined for three points in his past three games. 
  • DeVante Parker (85 percent): Parker is clearly behind Jarvis Landry and Stills, and he's been awful of late. Parker has two Fantasy points combined in his past three games, and he hasn't scored a touchdown since Week 3. His third-year breakout has been a third-year disaster. 
  • Kelvin Benjamin (73 percent): Benjamin will try to return this week from his two-game absence with a knee injury, but he might not have Taylor throwing him the ball, which could be a struggle. Nathan Peterman is not going to inspire confidence in starting Benjamin, and we don't know when he will be healthy.

Tight ends

Injuries of note: Zach Ertz (concussion), Jordan Reed (hamstring), Greg Olsen (foot) and C.J. Fiedorowicz (concussion)

Add if available in shallow leagues (in this order): Hunter Henry (83 percent), Austin Seferian-Jenkins (77 percent), Jason Witten (81 percent) and Jack Doyle (83 percent)

* - Add these players in this order, and they are owned in 65 percent of leagues or less on CBS Sports.

Priority list
55%
Cameron Brate Tampa Bay Buccaneers TE
It seems to be simple enough that Winston comes back for the Buccaneers and all of the sudden Brate is good again. In three starts with Ryan Fitzpatrick, Brate combined for two Fantasy points on eight targets. But with Winston at Green Bay in Week 13, Brate had six targets for two catches, 39 yards and a touchdown. He faces the Lions this week, and Detroit has allowed four touchdowns to tight ends in the past three games. Brate is a must-start tight end in Week 14 and a great replacement for Gronkowski or Ertz.
0%
Stephen Anderson Houston Texans TE
The Texans might not have a choice but to lean on Anderson as the No. 2 option in the passing game behind DeAndre Hopkins since Fuller, Ellington, Miller and Fiedorowicz are all hurt. Anderson had a great game against the Titans in Week 13 with five catches for 79 yards and a touchdown, and he has a good matchup against the 49ers, who have allowed four touchdowns to tight ends in their past four games.
44%
Ricky Seals-Jones Arizona Cardinals TE
Seals-Jones saw his two-game scoring streak end in Week 13 against the Rams when he finished with just two catches for 44 yards on five targets. But he still got at least five targets for the third game in a row, and he has a favorable matchup in Week 14 against Tennessee. The Titans have allowed a tight end to score or gain 90 receiving yards in three games in a row, and you can feel confident starting Seals-Jones in the majority of leagues this week.
1%
Trey Burton Philadelphia Eagles TE
Ertz could be out this week at the Rams, and that would make Burton a solid streaming option in most formats. Ertz was out in Week 9 against Denver with a hamstring injury, and Burton had two catches for 41 yards and a touchdown on four targets. He had four catches for 42 yards on seven targets against Seattle after Ertz got hurt, and it's clear Carson Wentz will continue to feature his best pass-catching tight end no matter who is there.
7%
David Njoku Cleveland Browns TE
Njoku had a great game in Week 13 at the Chargers with four catches for 74 yards and a touchdown on six targets, and he now has eight catches for 121 yards and a touchdown on 10 targets in his past two games. I hope the return of Gordon helps to open things up for Njoku, although he has a tough matchup in Week 14 against Green Bay. Only two tight ends have scored against the Packers this year, but both of them happened in the past two games with Jesse James and Brate. Njoku is a low-end starting option this week.

Drop list

* - If you need to make a move, here are some players you can drop for this week.

  • Vernon Davis (79 percent): Even if Reed is out this week at the Chargers, you can't start Davis in the majority of leagues. He had two amazing matchups the past two games against the Giants and Cowboys, and Davis combined for one Fantasy point. It's easy to drop him in the Fantasy playoffs. 
  • Austin Hooper (71 percent): Hooper has fallen off the past three games with five Fantasy points combined against Seattle, Tampa Bay and Minnesota. He also has just 11 targets over that span after he had 18 targets in the three games prior. Hooper isn't worth trusting in Week 14 against the Saints. 
  • Tyler Kroft (63 percent): Kroft has two touchdowns in his past three games, but he only has seven catches for 56 yards on nine targets over that span. So if you take away the touchdowns then his Fantasy production has been awful. He's not worth starting in Week 14 against Chicago.

DST streamers

  • Bengals (54 percent) vs. CHI 
  • Jets (13 percent) at DEN 
  • Colts (4 percent) at BUF 
  • Packers (30 percent) at CLE 
  • Bills (26 percent) vs. IND 
  • Buccaneers (36 percent) vs. DET

K streamers

Senior Fantasy Writer

Jamey Eisenberg has been a Senior Fantasy Writer for CBS Sports since 2006 with a focus on Fantasy Football. A University of Florida grad (class of '98), Jamey got his start in the newspaper business and... Full Bio

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