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AP source: NFL fines Saints $500,000, Patriots $350,000

Sun Nov 29 10:53am ET
AP Pro Football Writer

New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton watches from the sideline in the second half of an NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers in New Orleans, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

The NFL has fined the New Orleans Saints $500,000 and stripped them of a 2021 seventh-round draft pick for violating league COVID-19 protocols, a person with direct knowledge of the discipline told The Associated Press on Sunday.

The New England Patriots were fined $350,000 for similar violations, the person said, speaking to the AP on condition of anonymity because neither the league nor the teams have announced the fines or loss of draft pick.

New Orleans was fined as a repeat offender; Sean Payton previously was docked $150,000 and the team $250,000 because the head coach failed to properly wear a face covering against the Raiders in Week 2. The more recent issue with the Saints came after a win against Tampa Bay when the team's celebrations included players not wearing masks while in close proximity to each other. The celebrations were captured on video by some players and posted to social media.

The Saints are expected to appeal the discipline that ESPN first reported Sunday morning.

New England, which had a mini-outbreak of COVID-19 earlier this season that included positive tests for quarterback Cam Newton and cornerback Stephon Gilmore, was fined for not following protocols at that time.

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Sunday Morning Update: Week 12

The Paur Report
Player Notes
Giovani Bernard Nov 29 12:03pm ET

Cincinnati Bengals RB Giovani Bernard (concussion) is officially active for the Week 12 game.

Fantasy Spin: Bernard should be able to handle his normal workload this week and can be a No. 2 running back or flex option in fantasy leagues.

From TheHuddle

Philip Rivers Nov 29 12:03pm ET

Indianapolis Colts QB Philip Rivers (toe) is officially active for the Week 12 game.

Fantasy Spin: Rivers has thrown at least three touchdowns in three of the last five games and should have some success against the Tennessee Titans. He can be considered a low-end No. 1 quarterback in leagues.

From TheHuddle

Julio Jones Nov 29 12:03pm ET

Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hamstring) is not active for Week 12's game versus the Las Vegas Raiders.

Fantasy Spin: Even though Jones was a limited practice participant Wednesday, Nov. 25, he was unable to practice Friday, Nov. 27, so it is not surprising that the Falcons have decided to hold him out of this week's game. Expect WRs Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage and TE Hayden Hurst to see additional targets in Jones' absence.

From TheHuddle

Irv Smith Jr. Nov 29 12:00pm ET

Minnesota Vikings tight end Irv Smith Jr. (groin) and wide receiver Adam Thielen (COVID-19) are both out for Minnesota's Week 12 contest against the Carolina Panthers. The Vikings will have to rely more on rookie wide receiver Justin Jefferson in this one, who's a low-end WR2 play. Tight end Kyle Rudolph has some streaming or DFS potential as well.

From RotoBaller

Sony Michel Nov 29 12:00pm ET

New England Patriots running back Sony Michel was apparently a healthy scratch in Week 11 after coming off the Injured Reserve, but he's active for Week 12 against the Panthers. This is likely just the result of Rex Burkhead (knee) being out, and Michel won't see much work. It's possible his return cuts a little into Damien Harris's workload, but Harris should still be a solid RB3 option, as will James White.

From RotoBaller

Sam Darnold Nov 29 12:00pm ET

With New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold back at quarterback this week, the team will also see head coach Adam Gase take back over playcalling duties. It'll be interesting to see if Gase changes anything for the Jets. Considering his reputation as kryptonite to offensive players, we wouldn't be staking our fantasy hopes on Darnold or any of the Jets players this week, though rookie wide receiver Denzel Mims has FLEX appeal based on his increasing usage lately.

From RotoBaller

Kalen Ballage Nov 29 11:53am ET

Los Angeles Chargers RB Kalen Ballage (ankle, calf) has been declared inactive for the Week 12 game.

Fantasy Spin: Austin Ekeler is back in the lineup and should receive most of the work at running back moving forward. Ekeler should be a starting option in all fantasy leagues, while Ballage could be cut if a player needs roster space.

From TheHuddle

Hayden Hurst Nov 29 11:53am ET

Atlanta Falcons TE Hayden Hurst (ankle) is active for Week 12's game against the Las Vegas Raiders.

Fantasy Spin: Hurst had been listed as questionable on the injury report after participating in just one practice session during the week on a limited basis. However, he can be viewed as a low-end TE1 in all fantasy formats based on his performance over the last month, as well as the fact that he should see additional targets this afternoon with WR Julio Jones (hamstring) sitting this game out.

From TheHuddle

Gardner Minshew II Nov 29 11:50am ET

Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew II (thumb) will miss his fourth consecutive game on Sunday when the Jags face the Cleveland Browns. Mike Glennon will start while Jake Luton, who started the past three games, will back Glennon up. Minshew was struggling when healthy, but it's become clear that this passing offense barely functions with Luton under center. Glennon is unlikely to change that.

From RotoBaller

Philip Rivers Nov 29 11:50am ET

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Philip Rivers (toe) is active for Sunday's game against the Tennessee Titans. After missing practice time during the week, there was some concern for Rivers, but he'll be good to go. The Titans Defense has had some issues this season and Rivers already had a 300-yard game against them, so if you're in need of a streamer at the quarterback position or an affordable DFS play, Rivers is interesting.

From RotoBaller

Giovani Bernard Nov 29 11:50am ET

Cincinnati Bengals running back Giovani Bernard (concussion) has been cleared to play against the Giants in Week 12 and is officially active. With Brandon Allen starting at quarterback, Bernard should see plenty of work, though Samaje Perine will likely siphon off some of his usage. Bernard's a low-end RB2 play this week.

From RotoBaller

Kalen Ballage Nov 29 11:43am ET

The Los Angeles Chargers have declared OT Storm Norton, QB Easton Stick, CB Casey Hayward, OG Tyree St. Louis, LB Uchenna Nwosu, RB Kalen Ballage and DL Cortez Broughton inactive for Week 12.

From TheHuddle

Isaiah Ford Nov 29 11:43am ET

The New England Patriots have declared QB Brian Hoyer, DL Byron Cowart, WR Isaiah Ford, DE Tashawn Bower and RB J.J. Taylor inactive for Week 12.

From TheHuddle

Christian McCaffrey Nov 29 11:43am ET

The Carolina Panthers have declared OT Dennis Daley, CB Donte Jackson, OT Greg Little, QB Will Grier, RB Christian McCaffrey and LB Sam Franklin inactive for Week 12.

From TheHuddle

Julio Jones Nov 29 11:40am ET

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (hamstring) is inactive for his team's Week 12 contest against the Las Vegas Raiders. Jones was slowed down last week with the hamstring issue and ended up playing just 35 percent of Atlanta's snaps. Calvin Ridley (foot) won't be at 100 percent, but should see plenty of targets in this matchup and is a strong WR2 play. Russell Gage will also see more work and is a potential FLEX play.

From RotoBaller

Tua Tagovailoa Nov 29 11:40am ET

As expected, Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (thumb) is inactive for Sunday's game against the Jets and will potentially miss more time as well. Tagovailoa is 3-1 as a starter, but has struggled at times to move the ball. Ryan Fitzpatrick slides into the starting role this week and should upgrade this offense's fantasy upside a little bit. Consider Fitzpatrick a strong streaming option against a porous Jets Defense.

From RotoBaller

Adam Thielen Nov 29 11:33am ET

Minnesota Vikings WR Adam Thielen has been ruled out for Week 12's game versus the Carolina Panthers. He is still on the Reserve/COVID-19 list but it remains uncertain whether he actually had the virus. Thielen initially received a positive test, followed by a negative test, a second positive test and a second negative test.

Fantasy Spin: Justin Jefferson will serve as Minnesota's top receiver this afternoon, with Olabisi Johnson expected to start across from him. Jefferson can be viewed as a low-end WR2 or high-end WR3 option in fantasy leagues, while Johnson is a desperation play at best.

From TheHuddle

Sony Michel Nov 29 11:33am ET

New England Patriots RB Sony Michel is expected to split carries with RB Damien Harris in Week 12's game versus the Arizona Cardinals.

Fantasy Spin: Harris is expected to remain the Patriots' bell cow and remains worthy of consideration as an RB2 option in most fantasy leagues, although Michel's presence could reduce the number of offensive snaps he sees. Michel, who is seeing his first game action since Week 3, can be viewed as a flex option in many formats.

From TheHuddle

Julio Jones Nov 29 11:33am ET

The Atlanta Falcons have declared DT Deadrin Senat, OT John Wetzel, RB Todd Gurley, WR Julio Jones, DB Tyler Hall and RB Qadree Ollison inactive for Week 12.

From TheHuddle