Splash’s NFL Week 14 Team of the Week

Splash’s NFL Week 14 Team of the Week

by December 15, 2021 3 comments

With Week 14 of the NFL season in the books, it is time to look at the best performers at each position from last week. It should be a mix of usual suspects and random one-game wonders. If a player is not on the list, it does not mean that the individual did not have a great game. Not all positions are created equal. Prior performance has no bearing on this list. With that said, let’s look at the best 11 offensive players and best 11 defensive players from Week 14.

You can find the NFL Week 13 Team of the Week here.

An asterisk (*) indicates a player that would earn a spot on the All-Pro team through 13 weeks.

Quarterback: Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers*

Previously Appeared: Week 11, Week 12

Rodgers has made the Team of the Week in each of his last three games as he lays siege to what would be his fourth NFL MVP. Rodgers went off for 341 passing yards and a quartet of passing touchdowns, proving that he still owns the Chicago Bears. He earned a respectable 72.7 passing grade, and he did not have a turnover-worthy play on Sunday night.

If the season ended today, Rodgers would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Running Back: Dalvin Cook, Minnesota Vikings

Cook was on pace to break Adrian Peterson’s single-game rushing record by halftime. He had to settle for 205 yards as Kirk Cousins spontaneously combusted, but his 205 yards and two touchdowns were more than enough to secure the Team of the Week spot. He had 95 yards after contact, forcing five missed tackles. Cook had six 10-yard runs including five that went for at least 15 yards.

If the season ended today, Jonathan Taylor would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Wide Receiver: Cooper Kupp, Los Angeles Rams*

Previously Appeared: Week 2, Week 6, Week 7

Kupp had a monster Monday Night Football, turning 15 targets into 13 catches, 123 yards, and a touchdown. Kupp posted a solid 82.1 receiving grade. He had 51 yards after the catch, forcing a pair of missed tackles. He produced six first downs and a 123.1 rating when targeted. With each week, it seems that Kupp strengthens his grip on the receiving triple crown.

If the season ended today, Kupp would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Wide Receiver: Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers*

Previously Appeared: Week 3, Week 5, Week 11

The Rodgers-to-Adams connection was hot on Sunday Night Football. On 13 targets, Adams caught 10 passes for 121 yards and a pair of touchdowns. He had a strong 85.7 receiving grade, and he averaged 6.1 yards after the catch. He forced two missed tackles, and Rodgers had a 144.6 rating when targeting him. This was Adams’ sixth 100-yard game of the season and his third in three games.

If the season ended today, Adams would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Wide Receiver: Tyler Lockett, Seattle Seahawks

Previously Appeared: Week 2

Lockett ended as the highest-graded wide receiver, notching a 91.1 receiving grade. He caught five of nine targets for 142 yards and a touchdown. Lockett averaged 6.17 yards per route run, and his average depth of target was 25.9 yards downfield. Lockett hauled in his only contested catch, and he contributed to four first downs on the day. Russell Wilson had a 137.5 passer rating when targeting Lockett.

If the season ended today, Justin Jefferson would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Tight End: George Kittle, San Francisco 49ers

Previously Appeared: Week 9, Week 13

After a poor Week 12 performance against the Vikings, Kittle has returned to his throne as the NFL’s best tight end. Last week, he went for 181 yards and a pair of touchdowns. In Week 14, Kittle caught 13 of 15 targets for 151 yards and his sixth touchdown of the season. Sunday was Kittle’s fourth game with a receiving grade above 90. He is frantically chasing down Mark Andrews for the All-Pro spot.

If the season ended today, Andrews would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Left Tackle: Trent Williams, San Francisco 49ers*

Previously Appeared: Week 1

Williams was PFF’s third highest-graded offensive lineman in Week 14, helping him to an incomprehensible 99.0 overall grade on the season. Sunday was his seventh game with a run-blocking grade above 90.0 and his second consecutive game with a pass-blocking grade above 80.0. Williams allowed one pressure on 49 pass-blocking snaps, but his star power shone through in his 91.5 run-blocking grade on 22 snaps.

If the season ended today, Williams would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

The Joel Bitonio Award for Best Left Guard: Joel Bitonio, Cleveland Browns*

Previously Appeared: Week 1, Week 7, Week 10, Week 11, Week 12

Bitonio’s fourth straight game with a Team of the Week selection was perhaps his best of the season. In Week 14, he was PFF’s highest-graded lineman with an astonishing 91.8 grade. He earned a 90.5 run-blocking grade that led all guards, and he was no slouch in pass protection. He allowed one pressure across 35 pass-blocking snaps, good for a pass-blocking efficiency of 98.6.

If the season ended today, Bitonio would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Center: Erik McCoy, New Orleans Saints

Center was a tight race between McCoy, Billy Price, Mason Cole, and Ben Jones. McCoy had the lowest run-blocking grade of the quartet, but his pass-blocking was exceptional while the other three had average performances. McCoy was the only center to be in the top five in both run-blocking and pass-blocking. On 28 pass-blocking snaps, he did not allow a pressure. All told, McCoy posted an 84.0 overall grade.

If the season ended today, Creed Humphrey would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

The Zack Martin Award for Best Right Guard: Kevin Zeitler, Baltimore Ravens

Zeitler was PFF’s best right guard of the week, edging out Martin. He had a flawless day in pass protection, not allowing Lamar Jackson or Tyler Huntley to be pressured on 51 pass-blocking reps. As a run blocker, Zeitler performed admirably, posting a 77.1 run-blocking grade. With his 51 clean reps on Sunday, Zeitler has not allowed Jackson or Huntley to be hit on 553 reps this season. He has allowed just 11 pressures, good for a 99.0 pass-blocking efficiency.

If the season ended today, Martin would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Right Tackle: Penei Sewell, Detroit Lions

Previously Appeared: Week 11

Sewell was the top-graded tackle, and he narrowly edged out Tristan Wirfs off the strength of his run-blocking. Sewell was PFF’s top run blocker regardless of position, and his 80.1 pass-blocking mark was among the best of the week. He is beginning to settle in nicely at right tackle for the Lions. The Lions may be terrible, but they seemed to have nailed the Sewell pick.

If the season ended today, Wirfs would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Interior Defensive Line: Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams*

Previously Appeared: Week 2Week 3Week 8, Week 12, Week 13

Donald had a season-high 14 pressures on Monday Night Football including a trio of sacks. It is one of the most dominant performances in his career, high praise for a six-time All-Pro and three-time Defensive Player of the Year. He even added a batted pass for good measure. Donald posted an 89.6 overall grade and a 90.1 pass-rushing grade. It is his fourth game with a pass-rushing grade above 90.0 this season.

If the season ended today, Donald would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Interior Defensive Line: Chris Jones, Kansas City Chiefs

Previously Appeared: Week 10 (as an EDGE), Week 11

Perhaps no player is hotter than Jones right now. In his last five games, he has accumulated 35 pressures including 10 against the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday. His 91.5 overall grade and 91.4 pass-rushing grades were the best of Jones’ season and the best of any interior player in Week 14. Since moving back to the interior, Jones has been unblockable.

If the season ended today, Cameron Heyward would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Edge Defender: Myles Garrett, Cleveland Browns*

Previously Appeared: Week 3, Week 4

Garrett is having an All-Pro season, but it had been a while since he had a statement performance. It only took one whack of Huntley’s arm for Garrett’s Defensive Player of the Year odds to jump. Garrett posted three pressures against the Ravens, turning one of them into a strip-sack, fumble recovery, and return touchdown. It was one of the highlights of the week, and it proved to be the game-winning touchdown as the Ravens fell short in their comeback effort.

If the season ended today, Garrett would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Edge Defender: Preston Smith, Green Bay Packers

Both Joey Bosa and Nick Bosa had sensational games. The Rams’ duo of Von Miller and Leonard Floyd combined for 17 pressures. However, the nod goes to Smith and his ridiculous 11 pressures of Justin Fields on Sunday Night Football. Smith had an 89.9 overall grade, and an 81.4 pass-rush grade. He forced a fumble, and he was responsible for three stops.

If the season ended today, T.J. Watt would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Linebacker: Cole Holcomb, Washington Football Team

With all due respect to Mykal Walker, he only played five snaps. While he earned a 99.3 overall grade and 95.6 coverage grade, playing just five snaps will not cut despite the pick-six. On the other hand, Holcomb played 85 snaps and nabbed a pick-six of his own. He had an 82.4 grade, the fourth-best among linebackers to have at least 25 snaps.

If the season ended today, De’Vondre Campbell would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Linebacker: Micah Parsons, Dallas Cowboys*

Previously Appeared: Week 2 (as an EDGE), Week 11, Week 12, Week 13

Parsons may not win the Defensive Player of the Year like media pundits are saying, but he is having a spectacular season. Week 14 was much of the same as he recorded five pressures. He notched a pair of sacks, turning one into a strip-sack. He had two defensive stops, and he did not allow a catch on 19 coverage snaps.

If the season ended today, Parsons would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Cornerback: Rasul Douglas, Green Bay Packers

Previously Appeared: Week 7, Week 12

Not only did Douglas post the highest cornerback grade of Week 14 (tied with Kendall Fuller), but he also victimized Fields on a pick-six. Fuller edged Douglas by 0.1 coverage grade points, but Douglas did not allow a catch while Fuller allowed four for 15 yards. When targeted, Douglas surrendered a 0.0 passer rating. Douglas now has back-to-back games with a 90.0 or better grade.

If the season ended today, Jalen Ramsey would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Cornerback: Ahkello Witherspoon, Pittsburgh Steelers

While 21 defenders had an interception in Week 14, Witherspoon was the only one to nab a pair. In coverage, Witherspoon allowed a 19.4 passer rating, surrendering a 44.4% completion rate and under five yards per target. Witherspoon earned an 89.6 overall grade and a 90.5 grade in coverage. He was also effective as a tackler, successfully executing four tackles without missing one.

If the season ended today, AJ Terrell would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Safety: Justin Simmons, Denver Broncos

Previously Appeared: Week 3, Week 8

Simmons was the top-graded safety of Week 14, earning an 89.9 overall grade. He excelled in coverage, and he was the only safety to have a coverage grade above 80.5 (he earned an 88.4). Simmons recorded three defensive stops, and he allowed an 18.8 rating when targeted. Perhaps the most touching moment of the week was when Simmons made a diving interception and placed the ball on the Demaryius Thomas decal on the sideline.

If the season ended today, Kevin Byard would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Safety: Kamren Curl, Washington Football Team

In a strong collective effort by the Washington defense, Curl was perhaps the most impactful player. He had an 82.0 overall grade, an 82.0 grade as a run defender, and a 74.4 grade in coverage. On five targets, Curl allowed just one catch: a two-yarder. Curl allowed a 39.6 rating when in coverage. He was eight-for-nine on tackle attempts, and he contributed to three defensive stops.

If the season ended today, Marcus Williams would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Defensive Back: Mike Hughes, Kansas City Chiefs

Hughes had a unique day for the Chiefs. He had a pair of forced fumbles, and he also had a scoop-and-score on the first play of the game. Hughes was flawless as a tackler, notching nine solo tackles. He had a 90.5 overall grade, but he had a rare all-around day at the cornerback position. Hughes earned a 76.0 grade in run defense, an 81.8 grade as a tackler, and a 90.4 grade in coverage.

If the season ended today, Darius Slay would earn the author’s All-Pro vote.

Be sure to check out our NFL Team of the Week every week for the remainder of the season.

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I’m Ryan Potts. Some people affectionately call me Splash. I am renowned for being a misplaced Ravens, Cavs, Wings & Braves fan. Twitter: MrSplashMan19

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