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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.
None of note.
Joe Mixon (Cin) — The Bengals entered their Week 10 bye with a pair of ugly losses to the Jets (34-31) and Browns (41-16), but they emerged on the other side with a pair of resounding victories over AFC playoff contenders in the Raiders (32-13) and Steelers (41-10). Cincinnati has largely done it by feeding the rock to Mixon, who has rolled up 58/288/4 rushing on 5.0 YPC in his first two games since their bye. Mixon now has 24+ FP in four consecutive games and in five of his last six games, and he’s scored in each of his last eight games with 12 TDs overall in that span. He’s emerged as one of the top weekly options at the position, and he’ll be contending with Jonathan Taylor for the top spot this week against a Chargers’ defense that’s giving up a league-high 119.9 rushing yards per game to RBs. (Tom Brolley)
Cordarrelle Patterson (Atl) — Patterson came into last week as a true game-time decision with an ankle injury that forced him to miss in Week 11, and he left Week 12 as the RB4 with 27.5 FP. He gave the Falcons’ offense a much-needed shot in the arm with 16/108/2 rushing and 2/27 receiving on three targets, which gives him 14+ FP in his last eight full contests. He started his current run and his fantasy breakout in Week 2 against this week’s opponent, the Buccaneers, by posting 5/58/1 receiving and 7/11/1 rushing. Patterson is back to being a locked-in RB1 moving forward, and he’s Atlanta’s only prayer to move the ball right now with Kyle Pitts and this backfield wilting away. (TB)
Josh Jacobs (LV) — The Raiders went out of their way to feature Jacobs more in Week 12 and it resulted in season-highs in carries (22), rushing yards (87), and FP (19.2). He finished with 22/87/1 rushing and 2/25 receiving on four targets in an overtime victory over the Cowboys on Thanksgiving Day. Jacobs had seen fewer than 10 carries in three of his last four games, and he could also play a bigger role in the offense if Darren Waller (knee) misses time. Jacobs has been a boring RB2 for most of the season, but he has more potential down the stretch if he’s actually going to be a featured player in this offense. (TB)
Tony Pollard (Dal) — Ezekiel Elliott has been battling through a knee injury since he showed up on Dallas’ injury report with the issue before Week 10, and the issue came to a head in Week 12. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported after Dallas’ Thanksgiving game that the Cowboys could lighten his workload while giving Pollard more work while he plays through his bruised knee, or they could go as far as sitting Zeke this week to give him time to heal (per ESPN’s Ed Werder). Zeke still came through for fantasy with 9/25/1 rushing and 6/24 receiving on eight targets and a 64% snap share against the Raiders, but he’s averaging just 3.1 YPC on 32 carries and 5.0 YPR on 15 catches over his last three games. Meanwhile, Pollard sparked the Cowboys with a kick-return TD in Week 12, and he’s averaging 4.6 YPC on 28 carries and 9.0 YPR on 12 catches over the same three-week span. Pollard has objectively been the more dynamic playmaker for this offense for all of 2021, and he could actually have the chance to produce like a consistent RB2 down the home stretch with a few more weekly touches. (TB)
AJ Dillon (GB) — Even with Aaron Jones back in the fold in Week 12 prior to the Packers’ bye (somewhat surprisingly), Dillon continued to impress, especially as a receiver. In a win over the Rams, Dillon posted 20/69 rushing and 5/21/1 receiving on 5 targets… while playing just 51% of the snaps. He was much more effective than Jones (10/27 rushing) despite playing a near-equal snap share, and it’s beginning to become obvious that Dillon’s production as a receiver is simply not a fluke. He wasn’t asked to do it in college, but he’s clearly capable of doing it in the NFL, as our John Hansen was told all off-season by Packers beat reporters and those who are in Green Bay every day. The fact of the matter is Dillon is playing high-level football, and his production as a receiver is both a boon for fantasy and a huge hindrance on Jones’ ability to produce. (JD)
Your top 10 RBs by Yards per Target: pic.twitter.com/1vZfkKfFlu— BadgerNoonan (@BadgerNoonan) November 29, 2021
Leonard Fournette (TB) — Week 12 Lenny exploded against the Colts for a week-winning 4 TD effort that further cemented him as the Bucs’ bell cow. While Gio Bernard only played one snap and Ronald Jones mixed in as Fournette’s backup, Lenny went off for 17/100/3 on the ground and added 7/31/1 through the air. After Fournette saw just 11 touches back in Week 8 before the Bucs’ bye, HC Bruce Arians has effectively benched Gio and is only using RoJo sparingly. As a result, Fournette has seen a big increase in activity on passing downs since their bye. Fournette was averaging a respectable 4.9 targets, 3.8 receptions, and 29.9 yards per game while running a route on 54% of passing downs in Weeks 1-8. Since then, Fournette has been involved on 66% of the Bucs’ passing plays and caught 8, 6, and 7 balls in his last three outings. Fournette’s boost in the passing game combined with his role as the Bucs’ primary ball carrier gives him league-winning upside for the stretch run, especially with a date against the Jets on tap in Championship Week. (Graham Barfield)
Eli Mitchell (SF) — After missing Week 11 with a broken finger, Eli Mitchell got back this week and HC Kyle Shanhan immediately used him as a true bell cow. Mitchell set season-highs in snaps (70%) and touches (32) en route to putting up a 27.8 FP as the 49ers cruised to their third-straight game with over 30 points scored. We now have a huge sample of games that points to Mitchell being the 49ers clear cut lead back whenever he’s healthy. In his eight full games this year, Mitchell has played at least 60% of the team’s snaps in every outing and has handled 18 or more touches six times. At this point, Mitchell is a set-and-forget RB2 every week and he has a gorgeous playoff schedule to boot (vs. Seahawks / Bengals / Falcons / Titans / Texans in Weeks 13-17). (GB)
Odell Beckham (LAR) — While there is a lot to be worried about with the Rams right now, at least if you picked up OBJ, you’re getting what you bargained for. He played all but 1 offensive snap for the Rams in their Week 12 loss to the Packers, and put up 5/81/1 on a team-high (well, tie for a team high) 10 targets. With Matthew Stafford apparently dealing with a litany of injuries and now inconsistent play, it appears unlikely that OBJ will return to his heights from his days with the Giants. But what we did need to see if we wanted to put Beckham into fantasy lineups is a significant increase in role from his Ram debut before the bye, and we got that. Given the state of this offense, he’s more of a volatile WR3, but he’s certainly usable. (JD)
Darnell Mooney (Chi) — Mooney is the clear #1 option in Chicago’s passing game as we head into December with Allen Robinson (hamstring) vanishing from the face of the earth. Mooney posted 120+ receiving yards for the second straight week with A-Rob out of the lineup, as he finished with 5/123 receiving on eight targets in Chicago’s victory over the Lions on Thanksgiving Day. The speedy second-year WR has strung together four straight games with 12+ FP after doing it just three times in his first seven games. He will take small hits if Robinson and rookie Justin Fields (ribs) return to the lineup in Week 13, but Mooney is playing too well to take out of fantasy lineups until further notice. (TB)
Jaylen Waddle (Mia) — Ja’Marr Chase and DeVonta Smith have received most of the talk in this year’s rookie WR class, but Waddle is quietly surging ever since Tua Tagovailoa initially returned to the lineup from his rib injury in Week 6. He’s hung 15+ FP in five of his last seven games and he has double-digit FP six times in that span after posting a season-high 28.7 FP against a stout Panthers’ secondary. He finished with 9/137/1 receiving on 10 targets (32% share), which was his first 100-yard game of his career. He’s now seen 8+ targets in six of his last seven games with 7+ catches in five of those contests. He’s seeing more than enough volume to stick as a WR2 moving forward, especially if DeVante Parker (hamstring, IR) and Will Fuller (finger, IR) continue to stay out of the mix. (TB)
Hunter Renfrow (LV) — Renfrow has already been one of the best WR waiver wire pickups of the season, and he has the chance for some higher ceiling games if Darren Waller misses action after picking up a knee injury last week. Renfrow stepped up as Derek Carr’s clear top option against the Cowboys, posting season-highs in catches (8), receiving yards (134), and FP (21.6). He has been incredibly consistent with 5+ catches in nine of his 11 games, but he hadn’t topped 60+ yards in a game since Week 3 until he exploded for his first 100-yard since the end of 2019. Renfrow was already a set-and-forget WR3, and he has the chance to do even more if Waller and his 8.4 targets per game are out of the lineup. (TB)
Jarvis Landry (Cle) — Landry was the only guy on the Browns with any semblance of life on SNF against the Ravens as he set season-highs across the board in targets (10), receptions (6), and yards (111). Landry hasn’t been close to 100% healthy all year, so it is at least good to see him near his best for the first time this season. This past week was Landry’s first game above 15 FP since Week 1 and while he still hasn’t scored a receiving TD yet this year, he will get another chance to shred the Ravens here shortly. In a bit of a scheduling oddity, the Browns have their bye in Week 13 and then face Baltimore again in Week 14. (GB)
Rob Gronkowski (TB) — While the Colts (very surprisingly) shut down Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, at least we know for sure that Gronk is back! Rob Gronkowski absolutely obliterated the Colts defense for a monster 7/123 receiving line while looking like his 25-year-old self. Gronk is clearly over the ribs / back injury that caused him to miss Weeks 4-9 and he now has seen at least eight targets in four of his 5 healthy games. In fact, Gronk is averaging 18.2 FPG in his five full games – which would make him the TE1 over Travis Kelce (16.9 FPG) this season. Whew. Gronk is a set-and-forget guy for the rest of this season. (GB)
Players about whom we’re feeling less optimistic based on recent play or news.
Cam Newton (Car) — Cam sucked everyone in with his 26.2 FP performance in his first start of 2021 before he pulled the rug out on everyone who started him in Week 12. He completed a truly horrific 5/21 passes (23.8%) for 92 yards (4.4 YPA) and two INTs before HC Matt Rhule mercifully pulled the plug on him with a quarter to play. His one-yard TD plunge kept him from being a complete fantasy abomination, and his 15 rushing TDs since the start of 2020 are the only thing keeping him afloat for our game. He’s now averaging just 172.8 passing yards per game and 7.0 YPA with just 10 passing TDs in 17 starts over the last two seasons — he’s scored 20+ FP just four times in his last 15 starts. The NFL has told us the last two years that he’s no longer a viable starting quarterback based on the limited interest he’s received as a free agent. Don’t be surprised if he posts more duds after Carolina’s Week 13 bye, especially with his top weapon Christian McCaffrey (ankle, IR) done for the year. (TB)
Christian McCaffrey (Car) — McCaffrey’s season is officially over after the Panthers placed him on the injured reserve for the second time this season, this time for an ankle injury. CMC has been consensus top overall pick in fantasy drafts in each of the last two seasons, but an ever-growing list of injuries (ankle x2, hamstring, shoulder, thigh) limited him to just 10 of a possible 33 games in 2020-21. McCaffrey will likely still be a top-five pick next season, but he’s lost his firm grip on the top overall pick heading into 2022 with his durability concerns piling up. The Panthers will move forward with a split backfield when they come out of their Week 13 bye, with Chuba Hubbard working as the lead runner and Ameer Abdullah playing in passing situations. (TB)
Ezekiel Elliott (Dal) — Zeke has been battling through a knee injury since he showed up on Dallas’ injury report with the issue before Week 10, and the issue came to a head in Week 12. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported after Dallas’ Thanksgiving game that the Cowboys could lighten his workload while giving Tony Pollard more work while he plays through his bruised knee, or they could go as far as sitting Zeke this week to give him time to heal (per ESPN’s Ed Werder). Zeke still came through for fantasy with 9/25/1 rushing and 6/24 receiving on eight targets and a 64% snap share against the Raiders, but he’s averaging just 3.1 YPC on 32 carries and 5.0 YPR on 15 catches over his last three games. Meanwhile, Pollard sparked the Cowboys with a kick-return TD in Week 12, and he’s averaging 4.6 YPC on 28 carries and 9.0 YPR on 12 catches over the same three-week span. Zeke will need to continue to pile up catches — he has 3+ catches in six straight games — and finish at the goal line to continue to come through as a low-end RB1. (TB)
Saquon Barkley (NYG) — Lost in the Giants’ win over the Eagles on Sunday is that they managed just 13 points despite winning the turnover battle 4 to 0. And though Barkley played 87% of the offensive snaps, he posted just 13/40 rushing and 4/13 receiving on 5 targets… including a 32-yard run. The Giants aren’t blocking for him (they have the NFL’s third-worst run-blocking OL, per FootballOutsiders), Saquon might not be hitting holes when they are there, and the team just doesn’t move the ball well enough for him to have significant touchdown upside. The usage was promising, everything else was not. (JD)
Myles Gaskin (Mia) — Gaskin owners have to be feeling pretty good after he scored a season-best 19.2 FP against the Panthers in Week 12, but there are plenty of signs the bottom could fall out on him in the final six weeks. The Texans released Phillip Lindsay before Week 12 and he landed on his feet with the Dolphins claiming him and getting him into the lineup immediately. Gaskin paced the backfield 18/52/2 scrimmage but he saw a six-week low 50% snap share with the Dolphins using four different RBs. Lindsay played just 15 snaps (20%) in the four-man backfield, but he saw a healthy 12 carries for 42 yards against the Panthers, with much of his work coming as the team’s closer in a lopsided victory. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Lindsay eventually become the primary runner for the Dolphins since Gaskin has been mostly ineffective with his 3.5 YPC average. Gaskin is clearly a player to sell high on this week, especially with Miami’s bye coming in Week 14. (TB)
Miles Sanders (Phi) — What a buzzkill. Sanders had a strong game in Week 12 by the numbers, posting 9/64 rushing against the Giants, but he appeared to tweak the ankle injury that landed him on IR a few weeks back, and though he came back into the game, he split work with Kenny Gainwell and Boston Scott. Despite the Eagles’ awful performance offensively with four turnovers, they still ran the living hell out of the ball, grinding up the Giants for 208 yards on the ground, and if Sanders didn’t get a little dinged, he had a shot to go for over 100 yards. Sanders played just 33% of the snaps offensively compared to 51% for Scott and 16% for Gainwell, and it appears the Eagles trust Scott most of the trio at the goal line. Given QB Jalen Hurts also has massive TD equity in goal-line situations, Sanders is likely going to need a bigger share of the pie to be a true fantasy asset. It just doesn’t look like he’s going to get it. (JD)
Zack Moss (Buf) — The Bills pulled the plug on second-year RB Moss on Thanksgiving Day, electing to make him a healthy scratch in favor of veteran Matt Breida. Devin Singletary led the backfield with a 68% snap share against the Saints, turning his 16 opportunities into 48 scrimmage yards. Meanwhile, Breida continued to make the most plays in the backfield, catching both of his targets for 29 yards and a touchdown while posting 9/26 rushing on a 32% snap share. Moss has been trending in the wrong direction for over last month with fewer than nine FP in four of his last five games. With Breida playing fairly well once again, Moss can be dropped in all but the deepest formats since he should stay in the Sean McDermott’s doghouse for the near future. (TB)
Dalvin Cook (Min) — Right now, we are awaiting official word for how long Dalvin Cook is going to miss. Cook re-injured his chronically bad left shoulder on Sunday against the 49ers and was immediately ruled out of the game, which isn’t a great sign at all. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that Cook tore his labrum and dislocated the shoulder, but called the injury “not season-ending.” I’m not so sure. According to our Edwin Porras, this is now the fourth time Cook has re-injured this shoulder and surgery has to be on the table as an option to solve this nagging issue. Even if Cook decides not to opt for surgery, the best-case scenario is that he misses 2-3 weeks – putting him on track for a Week 15-16 return. In the meantime, Alexander Mattison is a bonafide RB1 with Cook sidelined. In four career starts, Mattison has averaged 24.8 touches, 124.8 scrimmage yards, and 22.1 FPG. (GB)
Reports via @RapSheet is Dalvin Cook suffered a shoulder dislocation— Edwin Porras, DPT (@FBInjuryDoc) November 29, 2021
Dislocation- total dislocation
*0 weeks median if subluxation
*3 weeks median if dislocation
*Median = 39.3 weeks
High volatility ROS https://t.co/zGUCbuTAdK pic.twitter.com/KdOAmuNmoH
Aaron Jones (GB) — Somewhat surprisingly, Jones was available in Week 12 despite suffering an MCL sprain in Week 10. Given the Packers are on a Week 13 bye, we figured it would be prudent if they held him out. Well, Jones managed to get through their win over the Rams unscathed, but his fantasy value might have taken a huge hit. On a 49% snap share, he posted 10/23 rushing and didn’t catch his only target. Meanwhile, on a 51% snap share, AJ Dillon posted 90 yards from scrimmage and a TD, and continues to be one of the most efficient receivers at the RB position on the season. One area we thought Jones would at least dominate Dillon in a backfield rotation would be as a receiver… or at least that was common wisdom (we heard all off-season Dillon was making massive strides in the passing game). But now, both backs can handle any kind of work, and Dillon is now becoming harder to take off the field, which means a “hot hand” approach is the most likely in Green Bay once they come out of the bye. (JD)
Ja’Marr Chase (Cin) — Chase ran hot early in the season thanks to his 68.6% catch rate, his 21.5 YPR average, and his six touchdowns through the first seven of the weeks, but regression has set in hard since Week 8. He’s catching just 48.4% of his passes for 10.1 YPR over his last four contests, and his two touchdowns in that span have kept him from bottoming out too much. He posted season-lows in FP (6.9) and targets (3) in Week 12 with Joe Mixon and Tee Higgins dominating the Steelers. The Bengals have been committed to running the ball out of their Week 10 bye with Mixon toting the rock 58 times in Weeks 11-12, which has resulted in just nine targets in that same span. Chase is better than his numbers suggest since Week 8, and he’s not the all-time best WR (just yet) like his numbers would tell you from the first seven weeks of the season. Chase may not be the locked-in WR1 we thought from early in the season, but he’s still the top option in a passing game that’s going to be needed in the future with some tougher matchups looming (LAC, SF, @Den, Bal, KC). (TB)
AJ Brown (Ten) — The Titans have been snakebitten all year with injuries, and the latest is for one of the biggest buzzkills in all of fantasy football, Brown. The Titans placed him on IR before Week 12, with a chest injury. He’ll be out through at least Week 14, though the injury isn’t expected to be season-ending. Still, it’ll be hard to trust him when he does come back, so for now he’s merely a stash in the event he can contribute to your playoff teams (which is, essentially, what he is for the Titans right now). (JD)
DeVonta Smith (Phi) — Don’t worry, those of you who have Smith rostered for fantasy. He’s mad too. Smith caught just 2 passes for 22 yards on 4 targets from an extremely erratic Jalen Hurts in Week 12, and he had to watch as teammate Jalen Reagor dropped — ironically — maybe Hurts’ two best throws of the day on what would have been potential game-winning TDs. Smith was visibly frustrated on the field, and one thing that we have learned this year is that the “squeaky wheel” narrative is sometimes worth chasing. But it’s also worth noting that Hurts can be erratic as a passer, and with the Eagles still possessing one of the NFL’s most lethal ground games, there will be days like this for Smith. It’s good to see him running wide-ass open, but he needs to get the ball. Fortunately, this game completely disincentivizes the Eagles from trying to get it to Reagor. (JD)
DeVonta Smith livid as he came off the field. Threw his helmet to the bench. Wanted the ball. Was open. Never saw a target on the #Eagles' final two drives.— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) November 28, 2021
Have yourself a day, Jalen Reagor!pic.twitter.com/vPzjuRXBlE— Barstool Philly (@BarstoolPhilly) November 28, 2021
Elijah Moore (NYJ) — While Moore continued his upward trend of usage in Week 12 — his 88% snap share marked a season-high — the fact of the matter is that the Jets’ passing game has been low-volume when Zach Wilson has been at quarterback — Wilson is averaging 32.5 pass attempts per game in his six full games, while the Jets have averaged 45.8 in the games he hasn’t played. Moore did at least pace the Jets in targets (8) and catches (4) in Week 12 against the Texans, adding 48 yards receiving as well, but the floor is just so much lower with Wilson at QB. Keep in mind Wilson is also taking sacks at a prodigious rate, 10.1% of his dropbacks, which certainly affects this passing game as well. Moore’s usage is a positive, but everything else was a step in the wrong direction in this game. (JD)
Courtland Sutton (Den) — Even on a day where Jerry Jeudy was shut down by Chris Harris (for 2/23 receiving), Courtland Sutton was an afterthought in the Broncos passing attack. Sutton caught 2 balls for 17 yards against the Chargers and now has just 7 receptions for 95 yards over the last month. In the five full games Sutton and Jeudy have played together this year, Sutton has managed to earn just 15 targets total. Yikes. He’s completely unusable in fantasy at this point. (GB)
Kyle Pitts (Atl) — Pitts has hit a major rough patch with 10 or fewer FP in five straight games, which includes three performances with 30 or fewer yards. The Jaguars were the latest defense focused on limiting Pitts’ contributions against the Calvin Ridley-less Falcons, holding him to just 2/26 receiving on six targets (21% share). Pitts has scored just one touchdown this season despite seeing the fifth-most red-zone targets at the position with 16 — just four of those targets have come in the end zone. Pitts looked poised for an incredible run after he posted 16/282/1 receiving in consecutive games in Weeks 5-7, but he’s now finished with 10 or fewer FP in 8-of-11 contests this season. Pitts is the type of player who could snap out of a funk at any moment, but he’s shown the last couple of weeks that he’s not quite ready to be the alpha in an otherwise terrible passing game. (TB)
Dallas Goedert (Phi) — Goedert had just a single catch for zero yards against the Giants in Week 12, as QB Jalen Hurts had his worst game passing as an NFL QB. Goedert, like Kyle Pitts, is probably someone you just have to suck it up with because of his upside, but watching Hurts forcefeed Jalen Reagor targets of all people while Goedert is doing nothing for fantasy was beyond frustrating. This performance wasn’t on Goedert. (JD)
Players whom we’re not ready to upgrade or downgrade, but their situations demand monitoring based on recent play, injuries, or news.
Matthew Stafford (LAR) — Stafford’s now in the midst of a three-game losing streak in which he’s thrown a pick-six in each, and it comes amidst a troubling Sunday morning report from ESPN that his body is basically Baker Mayfield-like right now — riddled with all kinds of injuries. Stafford, of course, has enough ability and enough talent around him that, unlike Mayfield, he’s capable of putting up numbers regardless. Though much came with a big deficit late, Stafford finished 21/38 for 302 yards and 3 TDs, with the aforementioned pick-six. That’s certainly good enough for your fantasy team even if it isn’t pretty the whole way, but the fact that Stafford’s body may be breaking down and is affecting his decision-making (of course, he’s always been aggressive, often to a fault). The Rams have no choice right now but to hope Stafford turns things around. There’s just no other option for them. If you have Stafford for fantasy, well, you hope he doesn’t collapse. (JD)
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford, has been dealing with pain in his throwing arm, his elbow, a sore ankle, and chronic back pain, per sources.— Dianna Russini (@diannaESPN) November 28, 2021
He will play today.
Matthew Stafford says there is nothing that is affecting his play. “I’m going to look in the mirror and make the corrections”— Dianna Russini (@diannaESPN) November 29, 2021
Lamar Jackson (Bal) — After missing Week 12 with an illness, Lamar looked rusty as he struggled to read the field and missed throws en route to a 4 INT night against the Browns on SNF. Lamar saved his day for fantasy on an improvised TD to Mark Andrews, but otherwise bottomed out to his worst game of the year. After a consistent start to the season scoring wise, Lamar has been very boom-or-bust as of late and has now been held under 16 FP in three of his last five outings with games of 23.1 FP (vs. Bengals) and 30.6 FP (vs. Vikings) mixed in. Lamar’s remaining schedule – vs. Steelers, Browns, Packers, Bengals, and Rams in Weeks 13-17 – isn’t exactly easy, but the Ravens have no other choice but to rely on his arm with their run game floundering. (GB)
Alvin Kamara (NO) — The Saints’ offense desperately needs Kamara back on the field on Thursday night against the Cowboys. The Saints have dropped all four games since they replaced Jameis Winston (ACL, IR) with Trevor Siemian at quarterback, and the last three losses have come with Kamara nursing a knee injury. New Orleans looked completely hopeless in a 31-6 defeat to the Bills, with the offense averaging just 3.3 yards per play and a pathetic 1.8 YPC with Kamara and Mark Ingram both out with knee injuries. Kamara didn’t practice leading up to their Thanksgiving Day game, but both Kamara and Ingram were on the practice field over the weekend in preparation for their matchup with the Cowboys. Kamara will immediately jump back into the elite tier of RBs as soon as he is back in the lineup. (TB)
D’Andre Swift (Det) — Swift suffered what HC Dan Campbell called a sprained shoulder in the second quarter Detroit’s Thanksgiving Day game, which knocked him out after just six touches for nine yards against the Bears. Swift will be in a race to play against the Vikings, but he luckily has three extra days to get healthy for Week 13. The problem is the Lions are playing only for pride at this stage of the season so they could elect to take a conservative approach with their franchise RB, who has battled through a groin injury all season. It also doesn’t help that shoulder injuries are more difficult for running backs to come back from since they invite more contact than other positions. There’s a chance Swift could miss a game or two, which would elevate Jamaal Williams into a workhorse role after he played 63% of the snaps against the Bears. (TB)
Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt (Cle) — The Browns running game was stuck in mud all game long against the Ravens as Chubb ended up with more receiving yards (23) than rushing yards (16) for only the third time in his career. Meanwhile, Kareem Hunt might have aggravated his calf injury that caused him to miss Weeks 7-12. Hunt played on a season-low 38% of the snaps and was off of the field on the Browns final drive in crunch time. Luckily, the ailing Browns have their bye in Week 13 to get a bit healthier but they will be without stud T Jack Conklin (knee) for the remainder of this season. Cleveland’s offense has simply fallen apart recently as they’ve been held to 17 or fewer points six times in their last 7 games. (GB)
Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb (Dal) — Both Cooper (COVID) and Lamb (concussion) are expected to return to action in Week 13 against the Saints. The unvaccinated Cooper tested positive for COVID-19 before Week 11, which forced him to miss the last two games as he had to be sidelined for 10 days. Lamb suffered a concussion late in the first half against the Chiefs in Week 11, and he nearly passed through the concussion protocol to play on Thanksgiving Day. The Cowboys’ passing game should finally be back to full strength with the Cowboys’ big three WRs ready to go against the Saints. (TB)
Deebo Samuel (SF) — This has been an absolutely awful week of injuries, so set up a prayer vigil and light some candles in the hopes that the fantasy gods don’t take Deebo too. Samuel came up lame on an awkward tackle late in the third quarter on Sunday and never returned to the game after tweaking his groin. The good news is that Deebo avoided serious injury, but he seems likely to miss some time. After rushing for 6/66/2 against the Vikings, Deebo is now the WR2 in FPG (21.5) over Tyreek Hill (21.3). (GB)
Darren Waller (LV) — Waller is having a season from hell after picking up a knee injury early in the second quarter of their Thanksgiving Day game, which eventually turned into a fantasy bonanza against the Cowboys — he managed 2/33 receiving on five targets through 18 minutes of action. Waller was just starting to heat up after posting 90+ yards twice in Weeks 9-11, but he could now be looking at a potential absence for his knee injury. Waller has had some rotten touchdown luck with just two TDs in 2021 after scoring nine times last season, and he’s quickly going down as a mini-bust after being drafted around 25 picks into fantasy drafts this summer. (TB)