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What to do with Marlon Mack, Jonathan Williams in Week 14 fantasy football

Marlon Mack will return from a two-game absence when the Colts meet the Buccaneers this weekend. Can you insert him directly back into your lineups?

Indianapolis Colts running back Marlon Mack rushes the ball against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the fourth quarter at Heinz Field. Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Wally Pipp might not be the most famous Yankee in the history of the world, but his name is now synonymous with a scenario that sometimes plays out when a back-up steps into a large injury-induced void. Pipp, of course, is best remembered for having to sit out a game in 1925 due to illness and opening the door for Lou Gehrig to start the first of what would become 2,130 consecutive contests. Pipp is also a World Series champion and a two-time American League home run leader, but, well, those things sort of pale in comparison to your name becoming a verb.

Marlon Mack did not get Wally Pipped. After missing the Colts past two games because of a fractured hand, Mack returned to practice on Wednesday and was given the all clear to suit up this Sunday against the Buccaneers. More importantly, head coach Frank Reich revealed that he would not be putting his running back on a “pitch count” in Week 14, all but eliminating the possibility of Jonathan Williams having a fantasy impact. Heck, Williams was already losing snaps and carries to Jordan Wilkins in last weekend’s 31-17 loss to Tennessee, so its hard to even have certainty that he’s the handcuff RB to own should mack go down again. In any case, Mack had seen more than 60% of Indianapolis’ offensive snaps in six of the nine starts he made prior to his ailment in Week 11. I’d anticipate a similar workload with Nyheim Hynes spelling the South Florida product on passing downs.

Fantasy Football Analysis, Indianapolis Colts RBs Marlon Mack and Jonathan Williams

Though Mack will likely see his normal allotment of volume, his efficiency is a question mark against a stout Tampa Bay run defense. In fact, the Buccaneers come into Week 14 having surrendered just a single individual rushing performance of over 80 yards, due in large part to the team allowing an NFC-low 3.28 adjusted line yards per carry. Mack should see enough touches to be considered a low-end RB in all formats - while Hines is a FLEX option in PPR leagues - but this is not an ideal matchup.

Start/Sit Recommendation

Start Mack. Sit Williams.