The Market Report is your one-stop Monday shop for all the movement from a big weekend of NFL football.
These are the players who stood out for fantasy-relevant reasons — the good reasons, the bad reasons, and the in-between.
This column will be posted every Monday afternoon.
Players about whom we’re feeling more optimistic based on recent play or news.
Justin Fields (Chi) — It wasn’t perfect against the Lions on Sunday — Fields’ pocket awareness on the game-sealing fumble safety was pitiful — but in a year that’s been as bad as we can remember for QB injuries, we’ll certainly take 16/23 for 169 yards and a touchdown passing… and more importantly, 18/104 rushing, his first 100-yard rushing game of the season. There was a point earlier this season when Fields looked completely helpless, but he’s done a much better job as a passer in his last few games, and seeing some of that progress in Week 11 after an extended layoff for his thumb injury was promising. Fields has a long way to go to convince the Bears that they shouldn’t use one of their projected top-5 draft picks on a quarterback, but he’s at least convinced us he’s a viable fantasy starter, with his legs and legit connection with WR DJ Moore. (Joe Dolan)
Kyren Williams (LAR) — Williams is expected to return to the top of Los Angeles’ backfield depth chart this week after a four-game stay on the injured reserve for an ankle injury. He leads all RBs in snap share (83%) and route share (70.6%), and he ranks sixth in carry share (63%) in six games of action. He averaged 16.2/76.0 rushing and 2.2/17.5 receiving per game with 7 total TDs before picking up his injury. The big question is will he return to his bell-cow role off of his injury, or will Sean McVay take some work off his plate by mixing in Ronnie Rivers, Royce Freeman, and/or Darrell Henderson. At the very least, Williams picked a great week to return against a Cardinals defense that’s been battered by opposing backs all season, including in Week 11 when Devin Singletary posted 22/112/1 rushing and 2/6 receiving for 19.8 FP against them. (Tom Brolley)
James Cook (Buf) — Cook didn’t play an abnormal snap share in Week 11, posting a 59% rate, but in his first game under new offensive coordinator Joe Brady, he tied a season-high with 21 opportunities. Cook carried 17 times for 73 yards and added 3/29/1 receiving on 4 targets, marking the second straight time and the third time in his last five games that he’s topped 100 yards from scrimmage. Cook has had a good year by almost all accounts, so the Bills’ refusal to truly commit to him is baffling, especially since he can help take some of the pressure off of Josh Allen, who has more on his shoulders than any quarterback in the NFL. Cook is a great RB2, and we hope the Bills start giving him more goal-line work. (JD)
I asked Sean McDermott what he thought of how Joe Brady called his first game since being promoted to interim OC: "Joe picked up where we needed him to right away. When we made the switch there was no hesitation. I saw a healthy dose of leadership from Joe." pic.twitter.com/QTfAu2InUQ— Heather Prusak (@haprusak) November 20, 2023
Jaylen Warren (Pit) — Warren has been Pittsburgh’s best back all season, and he provided the only spark for a lifeless offense in a loss to the Browns in Week 12. He exploded for a 74-yard touchdown early in the third quarter to help him total 9/129/1 rushing and 3/16 receiving on a 45% snap share. Meanwhile, Najee Harris was stuffed on 58.3% of his runs on his way to mustering just 12/35 rushing and a 1-yard catch on a 57% snap share. Warren has outscored Harris in 7-of-10 games and holds a strong advantage in FPG (12.5>9.9) despite Najee holding an advantage in snap share (55%>46%) and carry share (50%>31%). Warren has run for 88+ yards and totaled 110+ scrimmage yards in three consecutive games, and it’s clear Pittsburgh’s offense needs to run through him if this unit has any hope of turning a corner in the final six weeks of the fantasy season. (TB)
Devin Singletary (Hou) — With each passing week, it looks more and more like the Texans have found their franchise QB for the next decade — CJ Stroud. While it’s far less important for their long-term future, their short-term outlook — including a 2023 playoff run — is improved by the fact that it also appears they’ve found their back. Dameon Pierce has missed the last three games with an ankle injury. While Singletary had a stinker in the first of those three games, he’s run for over 100 yards in each of the last two, including 22/112/1 against the Cardinals in Week 11. The fact that he’s also produced over 5.0 YPC in those two games is a great sign, because he’s getting it done with both efficiency and volume. Singletary’s snaps have gone from 75% to 81% to 85% in the last three games, and while a returning Pierce should be used to spell Singletary, it’d be coaching malpractice to make this a split backfield. This staff is sharp, so expect “Motor” to remain the top dog and a rock-solid fantasy RB2… if not RB1. (JD)
Brian Robinson (Was) — Antonio Gibson picked up a toe injury coming out of Week 10, which led to a bell-cow role for Robinson against the Giants. He logged season-highs in snap share (78%) and touches (24) on his way to recording 17/73 rushing and 7/58 receiving on 9 targets in a Week 11 loss. He’s posted 20+ FP in back-to-back games thanks to a ridiculous 13/177/1 receiving on 15 targets in that stretch. He previously turned in just 14/137/2 receiving in his first nine games. Robinson has a much tougher matchup against the Cowboys this week, but he’s locked in as an RB1 option with Gibson unlikely to be ready to play on Thanksgiving Day after logging three DNPs before Week 11. (TB)
A.J. Dillon (GB) — Aaron Jones picked up a knee injury early against the Chargers to continue his disappointing season. He avoided an ACL tear based on preliminary tests and HC Matt LaFleur said he avoided a “long-term injury”, but Jones could still be looking at another absence for his latest injury with just six games remaining in the fantasy season. Dillon compiled just 14/29 rushing and 4/32 receiving for 10.1 FP on a 72% snap share in Green Bay’s victory over the Chargers. Dillon is averaging career worsts in YPA (3.5) and success rate (50.4%), and he’s far from guaranteed to come through with a big workload as we saw earlier this season. He finished with fewer than 8 FP in three of his four games with Jones mostly out of the lineup in Weeks 2-5. Dillon will get at least one more crack at volume this week against the Lions with both Jones and Emanuel Wilson (shoulder) unlikely to play on Thanksgiving Day, and he could get multiple games with volume depending on the severity of Jones’ latest injury. (TB)
DJ Moore (Chi) — When Justin Fields plays, start DJM. It’s pretty simple. In Fields’ first game since Week 6 — and his first full game since Week 5 — Moore posted 7/96/1 on 9 targets against the Lions. That means that in Moore’s last three full games with Fields, he’s totaled 23/457/5 receiving. That’s insane! In the four full games Moore played with Tyson Bagent — who certainly held his own — Moore’s aDOT was at 10.0 yards, per Fantasy Points Data. It is almost 50% higher with Fields — 15.0 aDOT in Fields’ six full games. So the big plays are just part of what Moore has with Fields that he doesn’t have with Bagent, as are the touchdowns, as all of Moore’s 6 TD this year have come with Fields throwing the ball. It remains to be seen if Fields will be the Bears’ long-term starter after this year, but he certainly has a connection with Moore. (JD)
Puka Nacua (LAR) — Puka returned to his role as Matthew Stafford’s clear top option, with Cooper Kupp leaving Week 12 early with an ankle injury. He finished with 5/70/1 receiving on 7 targets (22.6%) for 18.7 FP in a victory over the Seahawks, and it was just his second game with more than 7.3 FP in his last five tries. It doesn’t look like Kupp should miss significant time for his injury but his body is clearly betraying him this season, which could elevate the rookie back into the go-to receiver role down the stretch. Nacua posted a ridiculous 39/501/1 receiving on 52 targets without Kupp in the first four weeks of the season, and he’d be locked into a WR1 if Kupp misses any time down the stretch and if Matthew Stafford remains in the lineup. (TB)
Tank Dell (Hou) — Dell had a three-game stretch from Weeks 4 through 8 — he missed one game and parts of another because of injury in that span — where he didn’t do a whole lot for fantasy, totaling 7 catches for 89 yards on 11 targets. But since then, he’s been on yet another heater. He set new career highs with 8 catches and 149 yards against the Cardinals in Week 11, scoring his 6th receiving touchdown of the season (on a spectacular, acrobatic catch). It was Dell’s third straight game with at least 6 catches and a receiving touchdown, and it’s becoming clear that he is a bonafide star in the making. Not only does Dell play bigger than his size — which was really the only concern about him — but he’s also incredibly polished for a rookie. He’s CJ Stroud’s version of DeSean Jackson… and is a more complete receiver than DJax was as a rookie. This a potentially special player who is an every-week WR2 the rest of the way. (JD)
Tank Dell showed why he’s special in a couple big plays v ARI— Mark Dulgerian (@MarkDulgerian) November 20, 2023
Clip 1: Full sprint out of deep in-break & has awareness & control to elude big hit mid-catch
Clip 2: Shows it all. Expert utilization of suddenness & leverage, instincts to open up on scramble drill, acrobatic finish pic.twitter.com/0I2qjkqDA5
Calvin Ridley (Jax) — It may seem a little counterintuitive but Ridley’s three best fantasy performances have come in the four games when Zay Jones was in the lineup. Ridley erupted for a season-best 31.1 FP in Week 11 by posting 7/103/2 receiving on 9 targets, adding an 18-yard carry in a trouncing of the Titans. Ridley has three performances with 100+ receiving yards, 7+ catches, and 20+ FP and they’ve all come with Jones on the field. Zay has battled through a knee injury for most of the season, missing six games overall, but when he’s on the field Ridley is optimally used all over the formation. Ridley has struggled to maintain any positive momentum in his first season with the Jaguars, but a healthy Jones could be what he needs to end the campaign with a flourish. (TB)
David Njoku (Cle) — Njoku is coming off season-highs in targets (15) and receptions (7) in his first game since Dorian Thompson-Robinson became Cleveland’s new starting quarterback with Deshaun Watson done for the season. He previously posted 6/46 receiving on 7 targets in DTR’s first start of the season in Week 4 when no other Browns receiver topped 2 catches or 20 receiving yards. He’s the preferred underneath receiver for Cleveland’s backup QBs as he’s reached 4+ catches and 46+ receiving yards in four of his five games without Watson out of the lineup. Njoku has settled into a solid low-end TE1 after falling below 8 FP in each of his first three games, and he has an extremely friendly TE schedule in Weeks 12-17 (@Den, @LAR, Jax, Chi, @Hou, NYJ). (TB)
Players about whom we’re feeling less optimistic based on recent play or news.
Joe Burrow (Cin) — Burrow left Week 11 in the second quarter with what HC Zac Taylor called a sprained throwing wrist after the game, but it was revealed to be a season-ending torn ligament in his wrist the next day. He injured his wrist trying to catch himself after a hit from a Ravens defender, and he grimaced in pain on a clean touchdown pass to Joe Mixon. The big question coming out of the game was if he aggravated an existing injury after a deleted Bengals social media video showed him with a brace on the same hand before the game. Plenty of fantasy owners and bettors (myself included) were upset about the development since the Bengals failed to list Burrow on the injury report. Burrow had strung together five straight games with 2+ TD passes before Week 11, but his 2023 is going to go down as a lost campaign because of the two major injuries that bookended his season. (TB)
Kenneth Walker (Sea) — Walker has been trending in the wrong direction with Zach Charbonnet’s role expanding for the last month. He needed a 64-yard touchdown reception in Week 10 to keep himself from falling below double-digit FP in three straight games in Week 8-10. The bottom fell out in unfortunate fashion in Week 11 when he picked up an oblique strain that Positive Pete Carroll called a “legit” injury after the game. KWIII is highly unlikely to play on Thanksgiving Day against the 49ers, and he could be looking at a multi-week injury. Charbonnet racked 15/47 rushing while catching all 6 of his targets (15%) for 22 yards on an 85% snap share with Walker leaving in the first quarter of Week 11. Charbonnet was gaining ground in this backfield even before Walker’s injury, as the rookie had seen more than half of the snaps in three straight games in Weeks 8-10. Charbonnet is set up to see 15+ carries and a handful of catches with Walker unlikely to play on Thanksgiving Day, but the downside is that he’ll be a bell-cow option against a stout 49ers defense. In fact, the Seahawks have an absolute gauntlet coming up (SF, @Dal, @SF, Phi) if Charbonnet would get multiple games as the top option. (TB)
Aaron Jones (GB) — Jones’ time as one of the NFL’s better RBs is starting to look complete with a new injury derailing him in Week 11. He appeared in just two of Green Bay’s first five games because of a hamstring injury, and he’s underwhelmed since he returned to the lineup in Week 7. Jones picked up a knee injury early against the Chargers to continue his disappointing season. He avoided an ACL tear based on preliminary tests and HC Matt LaFleur said he avoided a “long-term injury”, but Jones could still be looking at another absence for his latest injury with just six games remaining in the fantasy season. Jones has finished with just two performances with double-digit FP in seven appearances this season. (TB)
Derrick Henry (Ten) — Henry never had a chance to rack up volume in Week 11 with the Titans squeezing off just 38 plays in a 20-point loss to the Jaguars. He posted just 10/38 rushing with a 6-yard catch on 2 targets, which was his second consecutive game with fewer than 6 FP — he has three games with fewer than 6 FP in 10 tries. Will Levis gave the Titans some hope with his 4-TD performance in Week 8, but he’s been unable to elevate this offense in the last three weeks playing behind the league’s second-worst offensive line with limited weapons. Henry ideally needs positive game scripts and plenty of carries to come through for fantasy, which isn’t happening right now. His last chances to get said volume might be coming in the next two weeks in great matchups against the Panthers and Colts, but his overall outlook is looking grim the rest of the way. (TB)
Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins (Cin) — Joe Burrow’s 2023 campaign came to a frustrating end because of a torn ligament in his throwing wrist. Cincinnati’s playoff hopes have quickly been dashed and this offense is on life support moving forward with Jake Browning running the show the rest of the way. Chase scored a late touchdown to salvage some production in their Week 11 loss — he finished with just 2/12/1 receiving — but his days as an elite WR1 are over with the inexperienced Browning running the show. Higgins’ season from hell will continue, and he’ll make sure his hamstring is completely healed before he takes the field again in his final games before hitting free agency. Cincinnati’s entire offense is a major downgrade for the rest of the season. (TB)
Cooper Kupp (LAR) — Kupp’s August hamstring injury may have been the beginning of the end of Kupp’s reign as an elite receiver. He threw everyone off the scent when he posted 15/266/1 receiving on 21 targets in his first two games back from the injured reserve, but he mustered just 9/109 receiving on 25 targets over the last four games. He caught his only target for 11 yards against the Seahawks before succumbing to a new injury to his ankle. Kupp had his helmet on and was angling to get back into the game in the second half, but the Rams held him out for the rest of the game. Our Edwin Porras believes Kupp suffered a low-ankle injury so he should avoid another trip to the injured reserve, but it’s still concerning that Kupp’s body is seemingly breaking down. Expectations for Kupp need to be lowered for the rest of the season while he battles through different ailments. (TB)
Garrett Wilson (NYJ) — Despite Zach Wilson’s generational suckitude, the WR Wilson managed to build a boat with bricks… for most of the season. But his level of play was going to be hard to keep up eventually, and it came to a head in Week 11 against the Bills, when he caught just 2 of his 8 targets for 9 yards. Zach has now been benched for Tim Boyle, and it speaks to how unserious a franchise the Jets are that this is the player they finally decided to sit Wilson for — Boyle might be the worst backup quarterback in the NFL. The fact that this team did nothing at the trade deadline is going to cost people jobs… but ownership had to be on board with it. Right? Right?? Meanwhile, Wilson is a WR3, and only because he’s so talented. (JD)
Tim Boyle (NCAA Career): 12-26 TD:INT ratio, 5.6 YPA— Scott Barrett (@ScottBarrettDFB) November 20, 2023
Tim Boyle (NFL Career): 3-9 TD:INT ratio, 5.1 YPA
Congrats Jets fans. Your team found the only QB in the league worse than Zach Wilson https://t.co/aUhQ9qPj4W
Diontae Johnson and George Pickens (Pit) — The Steelers ran into Cleveland’s buzzsaw of a defense in Week 12, but Kenny Pickett’s pathetic recent play didn’t help matters. Pittsburgh’s quarterback has regressed as his second season has moved along, and he bottomed out with 106 scoreless yards on 28 attempts (3.8 YPA). Needless to say, Johnson and Pickens had no chance for production with a combined 6/54 receiving on 14 targets (3.9 YPT). Pickett has thrown for 160 or fewer yards in four straight games, and he’s mustered just 1 TD pass in his last five contests. Johnson has just 3/33 receiving on 12 targets the last two weeks after posting 5+ catches and 79+ receiving yards in three straight games in Weeks 7-9. Pickens has been completely unusable over the last month, failing to reach double-digit FP in four straight games with a combined 10/104/1 receiving on 20 targets in that span. The only silver lining is that Pittsburgh’s schedule will lighten up some over the next month (@Cin, Ari, NE, @Ind), but these WRs have low fantasy floors with limited ceilings in this broken passing attack. (TB)
Marquise Brown (Ari) — It’s possible Brown’s two-game slump with Kyler Murray at QB is just matchup-driven — he has only 3 catches for 46 yards on 9 targets with Murray back in the lineup, but he drew the Falcons’ AJ Terrell and the Texans’ Derek Stingley in those matchups. But it has to be at least of some concern that he’s topped 10 FP in a PPR in just one of his last six games and has been essentially useless for fantasy. Again, if you think the matchups were just uniquely bad and his production with Murray last year should be more indicative of what we should expect, his rest-of-season schedule is at least up-and-down — vs. LAR, @Pit, vs. SF, @Chi, @Phi has some good and bad matchups mixed in. But it’s hard to get excited about starting him right now. (JD)
Mark Andrews (Bal) — Andrews is likely set to miss the remainder of the fantasy season with an ankle injury on a dirty hip-drop tackle from Logan Wilson. HC John Harbaugh kept open the possibility that Andrews could return later this season by saying he has an “outside chance” to play again. Andrews entered Week 11 ranking sixth in route share (79.1%), third in target share (22.1%), and third in FPG (14.6) among TEs. Isaiah Likely has disappointed in his two opportunities as Andrew’s fill-in this season, but he succeeded in the role as a rookie and he’s a talent to bet on with few good remaining options on the waiver wire. (TB)
Sam LaPorta (Det) — With the Lions at full strength (both healthy RBs, WR Jameson Williams back), somebody has had to take a hit, and over the last two weeks, that’s been LaPorta, who has combined for 58 yards on 7 catches on 10 targets over the last two weeks. He’s failed to reach 9.0 PPR FP in back-to-back weeks after doing so just twice in his first eight games of the season. He was still third on the Lions in targets in Week 11 against the Bears, but with David Montgomery and Jahmyr Gibbs soaking up so much work, plus Amon-Ra St. Brown needing his massive target share, LaPorta has become the victim of the old-but-true adage: “there’s only one football.” Most fantasy teams don’t have a better option, but LaPorta isn’t looking like the league-winner he potentially was going to be three weeks ago. (JD)
Players whom we’re not ready to upgrade or downgrade, but their situations demand monitoring based on recent play, injuries, or news.
Lamar Jackson (Bal) — Jackson likely lost his top receiver Mark Andrews for the season to a broken ankle on a dirty hip-drop tackle from Logan Wilson, and Lamar had to survive another questionable tackle from Wilson later in the first half. He needed his ankle checked out after the hit but he remained in the game and posted his 264/2 passing and 9/54 rushing for 24.0 FP. He previously finished with 15 or fewer FP in three straight games. Jackson is averaging a career-high 8.1 YPA, but he’s run a little cold with a career-low 4.0% TD rate thanks to Gus Edwards stealing 9 rushing TDs in the last five games. Lamar finally saw some TD regression last week and he gets an extremely friendly matchup against the Chargers, but he’ll have to lean on his WRs without Andrews in the picture. At least Odell Beckham and Rashod Bateman have started to show signs of life to potentially prevent a significant drop-off for this passing attack. (TB)
Geno Smith (Sea) — The Seahawks are in a tough spot with a quick turnaround to play on Thanksgiving after Geno picked up a throwing elbow injury on a big hit from Aaron Donald in the third quarter. Smith sat out multiple series before returning for an unsuccessful final drive after Drew Lock threw for just 3 yards on 6 attempts in relief. Smith is extremely questionable to play in Week 12 and, if he does go, he shouldn’t be expected to be close to 100%, which is bad news going against a 49ers team that’s humming again after their Week 9 bye. Smith has registered 16+ FP just once in his last seven games, and he’s now dealing with a throwing elbow injury heading into a gauntlet of games (SF, @Dal, @SF) over the next three games. (TB)
De’Von Achane (Mia) — Achane’s much-anticipated return to the Dolphins couldn’t have gone any worse for those who waited five weeks to plug him back into lineups. He lasted just 2 touches in his first game back from a four-game stay on the injured reserve, and he left early after aggravating the same knee against the Raiders. HC Mike McDaniel downplayed the injury after the game, stating that they held him out for the rest of the game after getting “positive feedback” from the team’s medical staff. The problem is the Dolphins have a quick turnaround to play the Jets on Friday in Week 12, which means Achane could miss at least one game since they played it cautiously with him against the Raiders. Achane posted 22.5+ FP and 120+ scrimmage yards in three straight games with 7 total TDs in Weeks 3-5 before hitting the injured reserve. Achane has massive weekly upside but that potential is only theoretical if he can’t stay healthy. (TB)
D’Onta Foreman (Chi) — Foreman played just 18 snaps against the Lions in Week 11, leaving after 6/14/1 rushing with an ankle injury. It was an aggravation of an ankle injury he suffered in Week 10 against Carolina, and we would have to imagine that puts him at high risk of missing Week 12’s contest with the Vikings, though he does have an extra day to get ready for Monday Night Football. With Foreman out, Khalil Herbert had 16 carries in his return to the lineup, but for just 35 yards, while Roschon Johnson ran for 30 yards on his 6 carries. We’ll have to monitor this situation throughout the week, but if Foreman misses, Herbert is almost certainly the biggest beneficiary for fantasy. (JD)
Alexander Mattison (Min) — Mattison is coming off his first best rushing performance since Weeks 3-4, and he didn’t even have the best performance in his own backfield with new backup Ty Chandler out-shining him in a loss to the Broncos. Mattison finished with 18/81 rushing with a lost fumble on a 65% snap share while Chandler turned in 10/73 rushing and 4/37 receiving on a 31% snap share. Mattison has mustered 8 or fewer FP in four of his last five games despite his healthy weekly role. Chandler did get blown up in pass protection, which led to Josh Dobbs’ interception, but the second-year RB clearly needs a bigger role as a change-of-pace option moving forward. (TB)
Justin Jefferson (Min) — Jefferson is likely to return to the lineup for the first time since injuring his hamstring in Week 5. He’s logged six straight limited practices since the Vikings opened his practice window before Week 10. Jefferson is still playing under his rookie contract after failing to reach an extension this off-season, and he told reporters in early November that he won’t play until his hamstring is fully healed. Jefferson scored between 24.0 and 27.9 FP in each of his first four healthy contests, which all came with Kirk Cousins at quarterback. He won’t have the same fantasy potential with the passing volume decreasing with Josh Dobbs at quarterback, but he’s still a no-doubt WR1 option when he’s on the field. (TB)
Stefon Diggs (Buf) — It’s possible that Diggs is in just a two-game slump, in which he saw two of the toughest matchups in the NFL — Denver’s Patrick Surtain in Week 10 and the Jets’ elite secondary in Week 11 — but he does still have just 7 catches for 61 yards on 13 targets in those two weeks, including a bad drop against the Jets. Things should pick up starting next week against the Eagles, but we’ll have to keep an eye on Diggs to make sure this doesn’t become a winter of discontent as the Bills look to put a Super Bowl run together. (JD)
None of note.
Joe Dolan (JD), Graham Barfield (GB), and Tom Brolley (TB) contributed to this article