The 7 Most Effective Offensive Players From Week 14
Amongst the dud minefield that cost many people their fantasy playoff matchups, there were some great performances that propelled others. Included in them is a player who seems to make the list every week and others who are making their first appearance on the All-Net Expected Points (NEP) squad. So let’s find out who the most effective players from Week 14 were.
Matt Ryan, Quarterback, Atlanta Falcons
After the first half of the Falcons’ Monday night game, it looked like Matt Ryan was due for another dud game. He didn’t throw a single touchdown in the first half, and the Falcons entered half time with a 24-point deficit to the Green Bay Packers. Well, whatever Mike Smith told Ryan in the locker room seemed to have worked as the quarterback came out roaring in the second half.
Ryan ended up throwing four touchdowns in the eventual loss, and they all came in the second half. More so, Ryan spread the wealth with each of his touchdown passes going different receivers. Most of Ryan’s touchdowns were inside the five-yard line, including his final one to Harry Douglas to make it a six-point game with about two minutes remaining. His touchdown would however prove to be too little too late, as the Packers were able to run out the clock on the ensuing drive.
Ryan added 375 passing yards and an interception to his four-touchdown game. He also finished with a Passing NEP of 22.53 and is now seventh among quarterbacks in the category.
Le’Veon Bell, Running Back, Pittsburgh Steelers
Color me shocked! Le’Veon Bell made the All-NEP team again? Yes. Yes he did. And I’ll spare you the fluff, as you can go read about him in the 100 other All-NEP articles he’s been in so far this season.
Bell ended his day rushing 26 times for 185 yards and two scores, adding 6 catches, 50 yards, and another touchdown through the air. His day was good enough for a 8.48 Rushing NEP and a 16.27 Total NEP.
It was a great day to watch Le’Veon because each of his three touchdowns showcased a different - yet elite - ability. On his first he showed great route-running and catching, beating a linebacker on an out route and scoring from 10 yards out.
On his second he displayed his great patience as he waited for a hole to open. When it finally did he exploded through and trucked multiple defenders to get into the end zone.
And finally, his third showed his speed. From the 22-yard line, Bell took the handoff, found the corner, and raced down the side line to score.
Bell still sits at the top of the list in Total NEP among all running backs.
DeMarco Murray, Running Back, Dallas Cowboys
DeMarco Murray is having an amazing year. In fact, Murray leads the league in rushing with 1,606 yards. He’s also tied for the league lead in rushing touchdowns, has the second most runs of 20 or more yards, and is tied for first in runs of 40 or more yards.
Murray continued his hot season Thursday night versus the Chicago Bears rushing 32 times for 179 yards and a touchdown. Murray also added 9 receptions for 49 yards. All of this was good enough for a Rushing NEP of 6.43 and a Total NEP of 8.99.
A big reason, other than his gaudy stats, for his high NEP is the fact that he had 11 rushes of 7 or more yards and converted once on each third and fourth down.
Murray now ranks sixth in Rushing NEP among running backs and is 11th in Total NEP.
Julio Jones, Wide Receiver, Atlanta Falcons
Matt Ryan’s running mate joins him on this week’s list, and why shouldn’t he? I mean, Julio Jones is a big reason Ryan is on the list since he accounted for almost 70 percent of his passing yards. Julio left Lambeau Field with 11 catches, 259 yards, a touchdown and a Reception NEP of 24.33.
Jones’ touchdown was Ryan’s second of the night and sparked a fourth quarter comeback that would eventually fall short. Julio’s touchdown was a great display of athleticism as he made a leaping back shoulder catch in the front corner of the end zone.
Jones has been on a tear lately and is now the league leader in receiving yards with 1,428. Another statistic he now also leads: our Reception NEP. His big primetime night boosted him to the top spot with a mark of 128.33 on receptions this year.
A.J. Green, Wide Receiver, Cincinnati Bengals
A.J. Green, like his All-NEP counterpart Jones, also accounted for a high percentage of his quarterback’s yardage - 74 percent to be exact. Green had a phenomenal day catching 11 balls for 224 yards and a touchdown.
His touchdown came with the third quarter seconds from ending and his team down by three. On 2nd-and-7 Green caught the deep bomb, cut to make a man miss and sped away into the end zone for the 81-yard touchdown as time expired in the quarter.
He finished Sunday afternoon with a Reception NEP of 16.91, the second highest behind Julio Jones. Green is making up for lost time after misses multiple games this year with foot problems.
Mychal Rivera, Tight End, Oakland Raiders
Mychal Rivera makes his inaugural appearance on the weekly All-NEP team. He certainly earned his spot this week facing some tough competition from other tight ends. Rivera posted a line of 7 receptions, 109 yards, and a score.
With the Raiders only up by four early in the fourth quarter, Rivera made a great contested catch for the five-yard touchdown. That touchdown came on a third down to go along with two other third-down conversions on the day for the tight end.
All of that, and the fact that four of his seven receptions went for 15 or more yards, lent to his 11.91 Reception NEP. Rivera has shown flashes of his talent but has been inconsistent this season. He’s got the talent to be a solid tight end, as evidenced by his day Sunday.
Calvin Johnson, Wide Receiver, Detroit Lions
Calvin Johnson had a fairly easy matchup on Sunday, but he didn’t miss the opportunity to capitalize. Johnson finished with a Reception NEP of 16.04 on 8 catches, 158 yards, and a touchdown.
On 2nd-and-goal with three minutes left in the first quarter, Johnson made a toe-tapping catch on a fade route for the first touchdown of the game. Nothing special for him - but a fantastic catch nonetheless.
Even with his missed time, he ranks 12th among all wide receivers in Reception NEP with a score of 86.27.