By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
Michel posts huge numbers
Well, the games this past weekend weren't the best once again. Two were blowouts and the two other were competitive but not all that compelling. This has been a theme in the playoffs after two weeks. And the fantasy output in these games has not been of the charts. There were some bigger performances this weekend, though. A few players really carried fantasy teams to victories.
Chiefs 31, Colts 13
Fantasy Stud: Damien Williams. Williams continued his great play as the lead back for the Chiefs. He ran 25 times for 129 yards and a touchdown. He also caught five passes for 25 yards, giving him 154 total yards and s score. Williams has 100-yard games two of his last three and touchdowns five straight. Williams could be playing himself into a prominent role with the team going forward. He has been great in a starting role for the Chiefs.
Fantasy Dud: Andrew Luck. Luck seemed primed for a big game against a defense that struggled much of the year. Well, it didn't play out that way with Luck struggling much of the game until finding the end zone late with the game out of hand. Luck was 19-of-36 for 203 yards and a touchdowns without an interception. Luck still had a great rebound season and seems back to his old self, which is really encouraging going forward.
Game Notes: Tyreek Hill had his usual big showing. He had eight receptions for 72 yards and ran once for a 36-yard score. He had 108 total yards and a score in the game.
Travis Kelce hit the 100-yard mark for the sixth time this season. He caught seven passes for 108 yards on 10 targets.
Rams 30, Cowboys 22
Fantasy Stud: C.J. Anderson. Despite Todd Gurley back and healthy, Anderson led the way for the Rams rushing attack. He had 23 carries for 123 yards and two touchdowns. Anderson had three straight 100-yard games and is clearly a big part of this offense even with Gurley back. Anderson is going to get his chances as long as the Rams keep dominating running the ball.
Fantasy Dud: Jared Goff. With the Rams having so much success running the ball, Goff didn't have to do much in this one. He was a bust for fantasy teams, going 15-of-28 for 186 yards without a touchdown or an interception. Goff has cooled some down the stretch, though, having one or no scores four of his last six games. He also has fewer than 200-passing yards three of those games.
Game Notes: Todd Gurley returned from his knee injury and looked near full strength. He ran 16 times for 115 yards and a touchdown, averaging 7.2 yards per carry.
Michael Gallup had six receptions for 119 yards. This was the first time in his career he hit the 100-yard mark. Gallup scored touchdowns two of the last four games.
Patriots 41, Chargers 28
Fantasy Stud: Sony Michel. Michel dominated carries for the Patriots and ran all over the Chargers with his big workload. He ran 24 times for 129 yards and three touchdowns. This was his first three-touchdown game of his career. It was the fifth time he hit the 100-yard mark, though. Michel gets few catches but continues to have big rushing yardage and touchdown potential in this offense.
Fantasy Dud: Rob Gronkowski. The Patriots had a ton of success offensively, but Gronk wasn't part of the fun. He had just a catch in the game, finishing with a catch for 25 yards. This game shouldn't come as a huge shock, though, because his production has been and up and down this year. Gronk has just four games all season with more than 60 yards. He has not been the Rob Gronkowski of past seasons.
Game Notes: James White did not have a carry in the game, but led the team in receptions. He got a workout in the passing game, catching 15 passes for 97 yards. This was his third double-digit reception game of the season.
Hunter Henry made his season debut, returning from a torn ACL, but was held without a catch. He was targeted just once in the game. Antonio Gates got much of the work at tight end, catching five passes for 41 yards and a touchdown in what might have been his last game.
Saints 20, Eagles 14
Fantasy Stud: Michael Thomas. Thomas had another one of his monster games, catching 12 passes for 171 yards and a touchdown. He was the focal point of the passing game and produced huge numbers once again. This was the seventh time this season he had double-digit receptions. Thomas is proving he is one of the elite receivers in all of football.
Fantasy Dud: Nick Foles. Foles was pretty quiet in what seemed a favorable matchup for him. He was 18-of-31 for 201 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions. Foles had multiple touchdowns three straight games before this dud. He has put himself in prime position to land another starter's job going forward, though, because of his strong play down the stretch. Expect Foles to be starting for some team in 2019.
Game Notes: Ted Ginn had three receptions for 44 yards on seven targets. In two games since returning from injury, Ginn has eight receptions for 118 yards on 15 targets.
Alshon Jeffery led the Eagles in receiving, catching five passes for 63 yards, but had a costly drop late in the game with the Eagles driving for a possible game-winning score. The ball went right through his hands and to a Saint for an interception. Jeffery finished the season with at least five receptions five of his last six games.
Jeff Paur is a two-time finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and won the FSWA award for Best Fantasy Football Article on the Web in 2011. He also was the most accurate expert in 2012, winning the FSTA Fantasy Football Accuracy Award. If you have any questions for Jeff, email him at email@example.com. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.
Green Bay Packers WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling created at least one step of separation on 70.3 percent of his targets (excluding screens), ranking third among the 72 receivers with at least 50 targets in 2018, according to Pro Football Focus.
Chicago Bears RB Tarik Cohen is expecting to maintain his role as the team's change-of-pace back this season despite an overhaul with the rest of the Bears' backfield. 'I feel like I'm going to be doing the same things I was doing last year,' Cohen told SiriusXM NFL Radio on Thursday, June 20. 'My role is not going to change. I still have to be the receiving back, come in be the change of pace back, running the ball, be that speedy guy. I'm just prepared for anything however I get the ball.'
Fantasy Spin: Cohen totaled 1,169 yards and eight TDs on 170 touches last season which ranked 11th among backs in PPR scoring and 17th in standard. He has RB2 PPR value if your league mates are too high on rookie David Montgomery.
Indianapolis Colts QB Andrew Luck's strong red-zone play is a key to the Colts continuing their success inside the opponents' 20-yard line, head coach Frank Reich said earlier in June at the team's minicamp. 'You need really good quarterback play,' Reich said. 'We got that last year. If you look at Andrew's (Luck) career -- that was one of the things I looked at when I got here. I looked at what Andrew's career was on third down and red zone. He's been good at third down and red zone his whole career. We saw that last year.'
Fantasy Spin: Luck completed 67 percent of his red-zone passes in 2018 with 33 TDs and one interception -- a big reason why he finished fifth among fantasy QBs overall and is ranked as one of the top handful of available QBs this summer.
Philadelphia Eagles WR DeSean Jackson, according to Pro Football Focus, had at least one step of separation on 67.6 percent of his targets in 2018, which ranked fifth among the 72 wideouts with at least 50 targets.
Fantasy Spin: Jackson is going from one crowded pass-catching corps (Buccaneers) to another, and he remains a boom-or-bust WR4/5 pick.
Washington Redskins QB Colt McCoy (leg) isn't being counted out of the battle for starting quarterback by the team. 'We would love for him to take some reps, but obviously his health is more important right now than anything, and that is the most important thing for him,' head coach Jay Gruden said about McCoy on the first day of minicamp. 'When his time comes it will come quickly. He will be ready.'
Green Bay Packers WRs Davante Adams, Geronimo Allison, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Equanimeous St. Brown, Jake Kumerow, J'Mon Moore and Trevor Davis could all make the 53-man roster, in the opinion of Packers Wire's Zach Kruse, with Adams, Allison, Valdes-Scantling and St. Brown viewed as locks.
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady posted a video on his Instagram of him throwing to suspended wide receiver Josh Gordon. He has been suspended indefinitely by the league for multiple violations of the substance-abuse policy, but there is a "chance" that Gordon could be reinstated by training camp next month. This is further proof that the Patriots think Gordon will become eligible to play at some point in 2019. With New England's lack of receiver depth, they really hope he's available to them eventually. If active, Gordon is a fantasy relevant receiver with big upside after he caught 40 passes for 720 yards and three touchdowns in 11 games for the Pats in his first season with them last year.
The Green Bay Packers waived tight end Michael Roberts (shoulder) with a failed physical on Wednesday less than a week after he was cut by the Lions following a voided trade to the Patriots. The 25-year-old landed on Injured Reserve last year with the shoulder injury and has appeared in 23 games for the Lions with 13 catches for 146 yards and three touchdowns after being a fourth-round pick in 2017. He can go on being ignored in fantasy leagues even if he latches on for good with another squad.
Free-agent WR Jalin Marshall (Raiders) has been suspended by the NFL for the first four games of the 2019 season.
Green Bay Packers TE Michael Roberts (undisclosed) was waived Wednesday, June 19, with a failed physical designation, according to a source.
Carolina Panthers tight end Ian Thomas (leg) was seen riding the stationary bike on the sidelines during offseason practices, and his left leg was wrapped in a sleeve. Head coach Ron Rivera said he is hopeful Thomas will be ready to go for training camp and the preseason. Thomas figured to have a large role heading into 2019, but veteran Greg Olsen is back. As long as Olsen (foot) can remain healthy, Thomas will likely see sporadic playing time. However, Olsen's health has been a major concern over the past two seasons, and Thomas could be just one play away from a big role. He is one to remember for waiver wire purposes during the season.
Free-agent DT Domata Peko (Broncos) said he would be interested in signing with the Los Angeles Rams or Los Angeles Chargers.
Arizona Cardinals rookie wide receiver Keesean Johnson is one of the three rookie receivers the team brought in during the draft, along with Hakeem Butler and Andy Isabella. Johnson didn't run the quickest 40-yard dash of the trio at the NFL Scouting Combine, but wide receivers coach David Raih likes Johnson's game. "You could put a glass of water on his head and he could run 80 yards without spilling a drop," Raih said. "He's like a motorcycle. It's all one piece." The trio of rookies will have a fierce battle for targets behind future Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald and second-year wideout Christian Kirk. One rookie will likely have a larger role, while one might be the fourth or fifth receiver and fighting for crumbs. It's a battle to watch in training camp and the preseason before investing too much.
The Arizona Cardinals released veteran cornerback David Amerson, meaning Robert Alford will either remain at right cornerback during the absence of Patrick Peterson (six-game suspension), or move left during his suspension. If he moves, Byron Murphy and Tramaine Brock would compete for the starting job at right cornerback for the first six games. The team also has Nate Brooks, Chris Jones, Deatrick Nichols and Brandon Williams jockeying for position. It's going to be a spirited battle in training camp and the preseason, and the Cardinals defense should be improved heading into 2019, but not necessarily enough to warrant fantasy consideration outside of the deepest leagues.
Arizona Cardinals tight end Ricky Seals-Jones (neck) has been able to participate in organized team activities (OTAs), but he and fellow tight ends Charles Clay and Maxx Williams are finding the looks rather scarce in head coach Kliff Kingsbury's new spread offense. Early on in offseason practices the Cardinals have used a 10 Personnel package frequently, featuring four wide receivers, one running back and no tight ends on the field. RSJ, Clay and Williams might be fighting for scraps in the offense, and their fantasy outlooks are rather bleak at the moment.
Arizona Cardinals running back Chase Edmonds is making adjustments on the field and trying to put himself in better shape for a larger role in 2019. "I come on that field every day a lot more confident in my abilities," Edmonds said. "Last year was kind of walking on eggshells, and my mentality was more like to not mess up, as opposed to just make big plays." He played the spread offense in college, and is excited by head coach Kliff Kingsbury's new scheme, too. David Johnson will be the bellcow in Arizona, as long as he is healthy, but Edmonds is a player to watch in deeper fantasy leagues, particularly in PPR formats.
New Orleans Saints WR Michael Thomas and the team remain far apart in contract talks, and nothing is imminent. However, both sides are motivated to get a deal done.
Fantasy Spin: Thomas is an elite WR1 whether he has a new deal in place or not.
New England Patriots WR Josh Gordon, who is on the Reserve/Commissioner Suspended list, posted a video of him working out with Patriots QB Tom Brady Wednesday, June 19.
Fantasy Spin: There has been speculation that Gordon could be reinstated again, and he's still such a tease of a fantasy asset. Keep tabs on his situation.
Seattle Seahawks RB C.J. Prosise could be cut in order to keep RBs J.D. McKissic and Travis Homer, in the opinion of the Seattle Times' Bob Condotta, who believes the team may not be able to sneak Homer onto the practice squad and that McKissic's dependability gives him an edge over Prosise.
Seattle Seahawks TE Will Dissly (knee) is the only lock to make the 53-man roster among its tight ends, in the opinion of the Seattle Times' Bob Condotta, who gives the edge to TEs Nick Vannett and Jacob Hollister for the other two spots.