Guest of the League
One and Done - FFL: Week 3 | NFL: Championship

Bucs safety Winfield inactive for NFC championship game

Sun Jan 24 2:04pm ET
AP Sports Writer

New Orleans Saints tight end Jared Cook, center, fumbles the ball as he is hit by Tampa Bay Buccaneers strong safety Antoine Winfield Jr. during the second half of an NFL divisional round playoff football game, Sunday, Jan. 17, 2021, in New Orleans. The Buccaneers' Devin White recovered the ball. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) Tampa Bay Buccaneers safety Antoine Winfield Jr. won't play in Sunday's NFC championship game against the Green Bay Packers because of an ankle injury.

Winfield didn't practice Friday and had been listed as questionable on that day's injury report. This will be the first game the rookie second-round pick from Minnesota has missed all season.

While the Bucs (13-5) will be missing one of their starting defensive backs, the Packers (14-3) had better news regarding their secondary.

Green Bay starting cornerback Kevin King is active for Sunday's game after missing practice Friday with a back injury that had left him questionable.

The Packers had prepared for the possibility King might not be available by promoting cornerbacks Tramon Williams and KeiVarae Russell from the practice squad to the active roster for the NFC championship game.

Green Bay signed the 37-year-old Williams after the Baltimore Ravens released him on Monday. He previously played for the Packers from 2007-14 and 2018-19.

Other inactive players for the Bucs include quarterback Ryan Griffin, running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn, wide receiver Antonio Brown, tight end Anthony Auclair and defensive linemen Jeremiah Ledbetter ad Khalil Davis.

The Bucs had already announced Friday that Brown wouldn't be available because of a knee injury.

Inactive players for Green Bay include quarterback Jordan Love, cornerback Ka'Dar Hollman, safety Vernon Scott, cornerback Josh Jackson, outside linebacker Jonathan Garvin, tight end Jace Sternberger and defensive lineman Kingsley Keke.

Keke is missing his third straight game because of a concussion.

Top Headlines
The Paur Report

Interview with a Champ

Player Notes
Travis Kelce Jan 24 2:30pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce is significantly more expensive in DFS than the other tight ends on Sunday's slate, but with the Buffalo Bills allowing the eighth-most fantasy points in the regular season to the position, it makes sense to pay up for Kelce. That's not even factoring in his regular-season game against them in which Kelce caught five passes for 65 yards and two touchdowns. The veteran tight end had 11 regular season touchdown receptions plus another score in the playoff opener against Cleveland.

From RotoBaller

Tyreek Hill Jan 24 2:20pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill only had 20 receiving yards in the first meeting between the Chiefs and the Buffalo Bills, but his role has continued to expand since that game. He's been targeted 10 or more times in seven of the last 10 games and is the highest upside wide receiver play on Sunday's Championship Game slate. While the Bills Defense will offer a little more trouble for Kansas City than Cleveland did last week, Hill's connection with quarterback Patrick Mahomes is impossible to ignore when building a lineup.

From RotoBaller

Green Bay Packers Jan 24 2:00pm ET

Green Bay Packers cornerback Kevin King (back) will be active for the NFC Championship game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday despite being listed as questionable to play. King popped up on the injury report on Friday, which is usually never a good sign, but he will be active. The 25-year-old missed the team's Week 6 loss to these same Buccaneers. Top cornerback Jaire Alexander should be matched up with Tampa's No. 1 wideout in Mike Evans for most of the game, which could leave King left to defend Scotty Miller or rookie Tyler Johnson with Antonio Brown (knee) out. The Packers Defense allowed the fifth-fewest fantasy points per game to opposing receivers, so Tom Brady and the Bucs passing attack will have their work cut out for them minus Brown.

From RotoBaller

Aaron Jones Jan 24 1:50pm ET

Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones is a strong fantasy option most weeks, but Sunday's NFC Championship game against Tampa could be one of those games where you don't want Jones in your lineup. His worst game of the season came against Tampa when he was held to just 15 rushing yards on 10 carries. He found the end zone that week, but with Tampa allowing the second-fewest fantasy points per game this year to the position, you're probably going to be betting on a touchdown to get any value from Jones this week. There are better DFS plays, even on a two-game slate.

From RotoBaller

Davante Adams Jan 24 1:50pm ET

While the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Defense has been really good and even shut the Packers down earlier this season, Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams is simply too good to downgrade too much in this matchup. He was targeted 10 times the last time these teams faced, catching six passes for 61 yards. It was one of just three games this season where he didn't find the end zone. Adams is one of the NFL's most consistently good wideouts, and while his floor might be lower than normal this week, his ceiling remains very high. Don't be overexposed to him in DFS, but don't ignore Adams on this slate.

From RotoBaller

Tampa Bay Buccaneers Jan 24 1:50pm ET

There was early optimism that Tampa Bay Buccaneers rookie safety Antoine Winfield Jr. (ankle) would play in the NFC Championship against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, but he has been ruled out, according to sources. Winfield suffered an ankle injury in practice late in the week and wasn't able to overcome it. A key playmaker in Tampa's secondary, his absence is a clear downgrade to the Buccaneers Defense as they look to slow down quarterback Aaron Rodgers for the second time this season. Rodgers went just 16-for-35 for 160 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions in the 38-10 loss to the Bucs back in Week 6. It'll be tough for Tampa to hold him down like that again on Sunday, especially with the talented rookie safety not in the fold.

From RotoBaller

Aaron Rodgers Jan 24 1:40pm ET

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers doesn't have an easy matchup in the NFC Championship Game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but his performance this season makes him a solid fantasy play still on this week's two-game slate. Rodgers threw multiple touchdown passes in all but two regular-season games, though one of those games was against Tampa. In that Week 6 meeting, Rodgers completed a season-low 45.71 percent of his passes with no touchdowns and two interceptions. It was by far the worst Rodgers has played. But that memory might make DFS players pivot off of him more than usual, which could pay dividends for those who do play the veteran passer.

From RotoBaller

Kenny Moore Jan 24 1:20pm ET

The Philadelphia Eagles have agreed to terms with Indianapolis Colts defensive backs coach Jonathan Gannon to be their next defensive coordinator, according to sources. Gannon worked with new Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni in Indianapolis. Gannon was with the Colts as their defensive backs coach since 2018, so he worked with Sirianni for the last three seasons. Under Gannon's help in 2020, Indianapolis' defense had the No. 8 defense in the NFL, and he played a huge role in developing young defensive backs such as Xavier Rhodes, Rock Ya-Sin, Kenny Moore, Khari Willis and Julian Blackmon. Gannon was an assistant defensive backs coach for the Vikings for four seasons prior to joining the Colts. His first job in the NFL was in 2007 as a defensive assistant with the Falcons.

From RotoBaller

Deshaun Watson Jan 24 1:20pm ET

The Houston Texans head-coaching hire is not expected to change quarterback Deshaun Watson's thinking and he is still expected to want out of Houston, according to sources. The rift started last year when Houston dealt All-Pro wideout DeAndre Hopkins to the Cardinals for running back David Johnson, and the gap widened early this offseason when the Texans didn't consult Watson before hiring general manager Nick Caserio, as they said they would. The 25-year-old signal-caller has a full no-trade clause in his contract and is reportedly interested in playing for the Dolphins, but it's unclear if Houston as any interest in actually dealing him. This storyline surrounding Watson will be one to watch this offseason, as the top-five fantasy QB could even increase in value heading into 2021 if he lands in a better situation.

From RotoBaller

Aaron Rodgers Jan 24 1:10pm ET

Tampa Bay Buccaneers stud rookie safety Antoine Winfield Jr. (ankle) suffered an ankle injury in practice late in the week and is questionable to play on Sunday against the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship game, but right now he's leaning toward being active. Winfield is a true game-time decision and will be tested in pre-game workouts. The 22-year-old has been a big part of Tampa's rise defensively in 2020, so losing him for this big game against Aaron Rodgers and company would be a big downgrade to the Buccaneers Defense if you were planning on running with them in fantasy lineups this weekend. Winfield had a big forced fumble in the Divisional Round win over the Saints and recorded 94 combined tackles, one interception, six passes defensed, two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and three sacks during the regular season.

From RotoBaller

Antonio Brown Jan 24 1:00pm ET

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers would like to bring wide receiver Antonio Brown back for the 2021 season after taking a chance on him with a one-year contract this season, according to a source. Brown won't play in the NFC Championship against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday, but the 32-year-old managed 45 catches for 483 yards and four touchdowns in eight regular season games in 2020. He's also had three receptions for 59 yards and a touchdown in two playoff games this year. Both Brown and Chris Godwin are set to become unrestricted free-agents this offseason. Brown could be even more attractive to fantasy managers next year if he re-signs with the Bucs and Godwin goes elsewhere, as he'd be the No. 2 behind Mike Evans, and quarterback Tom Brady has already shown that Brown has been one of his favorite targets in the passing game.

From RotoBaller

Sammy Watkins Jan 24 12:50pm ET

The Kansas City Chiefs will test wide receiver Sammy Watkins (calf) in pre-game workouts, but the team doesn't sound optimistic that he'll be able to play against the Buffalo Bills in the AFC Championship game on Sunday. He'll be a true game-time decision and is extremely hard to trust for fantasy managers, even if he's active. Watkins was limited in practice this week, but he hasn't played since Week 16 and was already an extremely inconsistent fantasy option in a loaded Chiefs offense. The 27-year-old will be an unattractive boom/bust fantasy wideout if he's able to play against Buffalo. If he misses another game, pass-catchers Mecole Hardman and Demarcus Robinson will have more big-play appeal down the field, with Hardman being the preferred DFS play.

From RotoBaller

Patrick Mahomes Jan 24 12:50pm ET

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (toe) was diagnosed with turf toe on his left foot, according to sources. It's an injury that affected his preparation for the AFC Championship game against the Buffalo Bills more than his time in the concussion protocol. Mahomes was cleared from his concussion and will play against the Bills, but his toe limited his effectiveness on the field last week against Cleveland and in practice this week. He'll be re-evaluated after the season by a foot specialist to determine if he'll need surgery on his toe. The 25-year-old All-Pro will be much more risky based on his DFS price this weekend if he's not 100 percent healthy because of his injured toe, especially if he isn't able to scramble as much and create off-script plays with his legs.

From RotoBaller

Matthew Stafford Jan 24 12:40pm ET

The Detroit Lions will be hiring former Los Angeles Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn as their next offensive coordinator, according to sources. Lynn had other options, but he wanted to work with new head coach Dan Campbell and defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn, who played for the Cowboys when Lynn coached in Dallas. The 52-year-old Lynn was with the Chargers from 2017 to 2020 and went 33-31. Prior to that, he was the offensive coordinator in Buffalo in 2016. Lynn was the running backs coach in Dallas in 2005 when Campbell was a tight end. Lynn had the best rushing offense in Buffalo in 2016, as the team averaged 164.4 yards per game and 5.35 yards per carry. With the Lions moving on from Matthew Stafford this offseason, Lynn will likely be working with a new QB, but second-year back D'Andre Swift will be in good hands in an offense that will likely lean heavily on the ground attack.

From RotoBaller

Le'Veon Bell Jan 24 12:40pm ET

The Kansas City Chiefs will likely be without running back Le'Veon Bell (knee) in the AFC Championship against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday, according to a source. Bell wasn't able to practice this week and should not be in any fantasy lineups for championship weekend. The good news for the Chiefs is that they are expected to be getting rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire (ankle, hip) back in the fold. The impressive rookie hasn't played since Week 15 against the Saints, but he did have a season-high 26 carries for 161 yards rushing in the Week 6 win over the Bills, so he should be heavily involved in the game plan if he's active. However, Darrel Williams should also be involved and will be a nice low-cost DFS sleeper against Buffalo on Sunday. Make sure to remove Bell from any of your lineups.

From RotoBaller

Clyde Edwards-Helaire Jan 24 11:00am ET

The Kansas City Chiefs expect to have running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (ankle) for Sunday's AFC Championship Game against the Buffalo Bills, though backup running Le'Veon Bell (knee) isn't expected to play. Edwards-Helaire should see the highest share of touches out of this backfield, but we could see head coach Andy Reid using Darrel Williams more in this game. CEH had 161 rushing yards in the first meeting of these teams, while Williams found the end zone on one of his six carries. The Chiefs running game isn't likely to be as effective Sunday, but both players have some solid DFS upside.

From RotoBaller

Le'Veon Bell Jan 24 8:43am ET

Kansas City Chiefs RB Le'Veon Bell (knee) is not expected to play in the AFC Championship Game against the Buffalo Bills Sunday, Jan. 24.

Fantasy Spin: Bell had been listed as questionable on the injury report after sitting out the final two days of practice during the week. Assuming he is declared inactive for this game, RBs Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Darrel Williams will likely share playing time in the Kansas City backfield this evening.

From TheHuddle

Sammy Watkins Jan 24 8:43am ET

Kansas City Chiefs WR Sammy Watkins (calf) will be a game-time decision for the AFC Championship Game against the Buffalo Bills Sunday, Jan. 24.

Fantasy Spin: Watkins had been listed as questionable on the injury report after participating in all three practice sessions during the week on a limited basis. He makes a very risky fantasy play this weekend since he would not be competing at 100 percent if he is declared active, in addition to the fact that he hasn't recorded more than 62 receiving yards in a game since the season opener.

From TheHuddle

Matthew Stafford Jan 24 12:20am ET

The Detroit Lions and quarterback Matthew Stafford will reportedly part ways this offseason, with Detroit exploring trade options for the former No. 1 overall pick. The Lions will likely look to take a rookie quarterback early in April's draft, something that will likely limit the overall effectiveness of their passing attack. As for Stafford, teams like the 49ers and Colts could be interesting landing spots that would see Stafford's fantasy arrow trending up.

From RotoBaller

Calvin Ridley Jan 23 11:33pm ET

Atlanta Falcons WR Calvin Ridley's 23 receptions of 20-plus yards in 2020 were tied for the league lead.

Fantasy Spin: Ridley's 90 receptions, 143 targets and 1,374 yards all shattered his previous career highs, and while injuries to Julio Jones created more opportunities, credit Ridley for being able to take advantage. Barring a major overhaul of Atlanta's offense, he should be no worse than a WR2 in 2021.

From TheHuddle