Sat Sep 21 5:19pm ET
Chicago Bears kicker Eddy Pineiro (15) kicks the game-winning field goal as punter Pat O'Donnell (16) holds during the second half of an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2019, in Denver. The Bears won 16-14. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Chicago Bears kicker Eddy Pineiro (15) celebrates his game-winning field goal after an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2019, in Denver. The Bears won 16-14. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) The Chicago Bears thought their kicking problems had finally ended when Eddy Pineiro made a 53-yard field goal to beat Denver last week.
No such luck.
Pineiro will go into Monday night's game in Washington questionable on the injury report because of right knee trouble.
Pineiro was hurt Friday, with coach Matt Nagy saying it happened during weight lifting. Pineiro didn't practice Friday, but did kick on a limited basis at Saturday's practice.
''Especially after what just happened with us and what we've been through (with kickers), and what he just did this past weekend, it's like we're on a roll here and then all of a sudden something crazy like this happens,'' Nagy said. ''But I try to stay positive with it and I think we'll be OK. We've just got to see how it goes the next couple days.''
The Bears had one other player who was a surprise on the injury report. Safety Eddie Jackson came up with a knee injury in Friday's practice and was able to go Saturday only on a limited basis. He also is questionable.
The Bears conducted a massive offseason kicking search after Cody Parkey double-doinked a 43-yard field goal miss to end the 16-15 playoff loss to Philadelphia. Parkey was waived.
Chicago brought in nine kickers at one point in the spring, traded a seventh-round draft pick for Pineiro, and then he beat out Elliott Fry to win the kicking job. Pineiro is 4 for 4, including last week's winner and another 52-yarder against Denver.
''I'm going to be on the cautious side with him and we'll just kind of feel out the pain part and if it's something that's going to affect him, then we'll have a decision to make,'' Nagy said. ''If not . hopefully he'll be OK.''
Pineiro didn't think it was serious at first, according to Nagy.
''Just thought that it was something that was minor and I think as the time has gone by and then going out there today he just felt it a little bit,'' Nagy said. ''So we're just going to pull back and see where it's at and be optimistic and try to do everything we can to make sure that we're taking care of it, the pain.''
And if Pineiro can't kick?
''That's a good question,'' Nagy said. ''We've got to work through that. I know (punter) Pat O'Donnell has some experience. But we'll see how this thing goes. I don't want to rush to judgment yet. That's not where we're at.''
At least the Bears know a lot about some of the potential emergency kickers available.
''There are a lot of different scenarios that could happen, but I'm not going down that route,'' Nagy said. ''I feel good that things will be OK. If they're not, then we just have to have a contingency plan when that time comes, and if that's something that we've got to do something different, then we'll do that.''
Jackson's injury is different than the one he had earlier in the week to go on the injury report. He had a shoulder problem then, but went through a full practice on Friday and then suffered knee soreness afterward. He practiced only on a limited basis Saturday.
Defensive end Bilal Nichols is out for the game due to the broken hand suffered last week.
Also questionable for Monday are guard Kyle Long (hip) and tight end Trey Burton (groin). Long was held out of Saturday's practice and Burton participated on a limited basis.
Five Hot Starts: Week 4
Carolina Panthers running back Mike Davis will take on the Arizona Cardinals in Week 4. Carolina had no qualms about Davis as their lead back, considering he handled 21 touches in his first game as the starter. While it's foolish to count on McCaffrey-like production from Davis, he can certainly deliver strong fantasy numbers with this kind of volume. The Cardinals' defense ranks 20th in fantasy points allowed to halfbacks, so it's a matchup where the 27-year-old can do some damage. Davis may have slightly more value in PPR formats, as the Panthers may be playing catch-up against the Cardinals, lending him more work in the passing game. Still, he can be played as a high-end RB2/low-end RB1 in Week 4 across all formats.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Leonard Fournette (ankle) and wide receiver Scotty Miller (groin, hip) are both missing practice on Thursday for the second straight day. Fournette suffered a minor ankle injury in the Week 3 win over the Broncos, but he'll need to get in at least a limited practice on Friday to have a shot at facing the Chargers in Week 4, where he's be an RB3/flex for fantasy managers. If he can't go, Ronald Jones II would become more intriguing as a flex play in deeper leagues. If healthy, Miller will be Tampa's No. 2 wideout with Chris Godwin (hamstring) out again. But even if Miller suits up, it's worth noting that he played just 43 percent of the snaps last weekend, making him a WR4/5, even if he plays. Justin Watson or rookie Tyler Johnson would be the Bucs No. 2 wideout against the Bolts if Miller is inactive.
The Cleveland Browns Defense draws a tough road matchup against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 4. Despite the unit coming off an excellent outing against Washington in Week 3, the Browns are not a recommended fantasy option vs. Dallas this weekend. The Cowboys sport an explosive offense and are installed as 4.5-point favorites for Week 4. This game has a high over/under set at 55.5 points and many expect it to develop into a shootout. Fantasy managers who have been counting on the Browns defense will want to look elsewhere for production this week.
Carolina Panthers quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is a sleeper in Week 4 despite a tough matchup against the Cardinals. Arizona has allowed the eighth-fewest fantasy points to opposing signal-callers, though they've surrendered two passing touchdowns in two of three contests this season. Bridgewater quietly ranks in the top-10 in passing yards, completion percentage and yards per attempt. He's had to throw the ball at least 34 times in two games this year because his defense has struggled- and he could be forced to sling it against a Cardinals' team scoring 25.7 points per game. Bridgewater is a good play this week in 2-QB or DFS formats and could also be a nice pivot for those who have Ben Roethlisberger or Ryan Tannehill as their starting quarterbacks in redraft leagues.
The Atlanta Falcons signed kicker Elliott Fry to their practice squad on Thursday with Younghoe Koo (groin) expected to miss time with a groin strain. There's a chance that Fry is elevated to the active roster in time to make his NFL debut on Monday night against the Packers. The Falcons have no other place kicker on their roster, so we'd expect Fry to get the nod this week unless they bring in another kicker between now and Monday. The Falcons have scored plenty of points through three weeks, making Koo fantasy relevant in the majority of leagues, but Fry should be avoided if he gets a shot because of his lack of experience.
Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins (ankle) missed his second straight day of practice on Thursday, and it's unclear when the issue arose for Hopkins. Nuk leads the league in catches (32) and yards (356) through the first three weeks, so his status should be monitored closely as we approach their Week 4 game against the Panthers. The All-Pro receiver is obviously a must-start if he's active, but his fantasy managers need to keep a close eye on his status heading into the weekend. If Hopkins needs to sit out, Larry Fitzgerald, Christian Kirk and Andy Isabella could be quarterback Kyler Murray's top three wideouts.
Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said that running back Kareem Hunt (groin) will not practice on Thursday. This is one to watch, as Hunt also missed practice on Wednesday. Even though Nick Chubb is the team's lead running back, Hunt has been involved enough in this offense to warrant weekly RB2 consideration. That would continue in Week 4 against the Cowboys if Hunt is healthy enough to play, but his fantasy managers need to monitor his status heading into the weekend. If Hunt cannot play, Chubb will be a no-doubt RB1, while receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry could see more aerial targets. D'Ernest Johnson would be next up as Chubb's direct backup.
Tennessee Titans star wide receiver A.J. Brown (knee) had a chance to play in Week 4, but he's instead expected to return in Week 5 after the team had their Week 4 contest against the Steelers pushed back due to COVID-19 concerns. Brown has been dealing with a bone bruise and has missed the last two games. He should be at or close to full strength next week against the Bills. The 23-year-old had a quiet Week 1 against the Broncos, but it could've been due to the fact that he injured his knee in that contest. If Brown is back against Buffalo next weekend, he'll have a tough matchup on his hands in All-Pro cornerback Tre'Davious White, so fantasy managers may want to temper expectations a bit.
Denver Broncos running back Phillip Lindsay (toe) is now considered unlikely to play on Thursday night against the Jets, according to a source. Lindsay practiced this week and is on the trip and is feeling better, but the Broncos could play it safe and hold him out for another week. A final decision will likely come closer to game time, so check back then if you were considering starting him as an RB4/flex in much deeper leagues. It'd be wise to avoid him altogether if he's active, since he'd be unlikely to see a big enough workload behind Melvin Gordon III. Royce Freeman is on track to serve as Gordon's backup yet again, but he's unlikely to see more than a handful of touches.
Baltimore Ravens All-Pro cornerback Marlon Humphrey is signing a five-year, $98.75 million contract extension on Thursday, according to a source. The deal comes with $66 million in guarantees. Humphrey is one of the best corners in the league and had the best year of his career in 2019, racking up 65 tackles, three interceptions and two defensive touchdowns. The 24-year-old former first-rounder has 14 combined tackles, two QB hits, one interception, four passes defensed and one forced fumble in three games so far in 2020. Humphrey is exceptional for the Ravens Defense, but he's not really in play for fantasy managers in IDP leagues.
Baltimore Ravens CB Marlon Humphrey agreed to a five-year, $98.75 million extension Thursday, Oct. 1.
Free-agent S T.J. Ward (Buccaneers) signed an undisclosed deal with the Arizona Cardinals Thursday, Oct. 1.
Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry heads to Dallas to take on the Cowboys in Week 4. Landry is off to a quiet start, averaging just 4.0 catches per game through the first three weeks of the season. While he has descended to WR3 status in fantasy, Landry does have the potential for a big game in Week 4. The Cowboys have an explosive offense and a shaky pass defense that ranks just 24th in DVOA. Those two factors could combine to turn this game into a shootout, which would benefit Landry greatly. Fantasy managers can treat Landry as an upside WR3 in Week 4.
Cleveland Browns tight end Austin Hooper is off to a slow start with his new team. Through three games, Hooper has just seven receptions for 62 scoreless yards and hasn't drawn more than four targets in a game. He does have the potential to break out in Week 4 as the Browns travel to Dallas to face the Cowboys. Dallas has a high-scoring offense and a shaky defense, which could turn this game into a blowout. That would benefit Hooper as he could see an uptick in usage in the passing game. That being said, it will be hard to trust him as anything more than a TE2 until he proves it on the field.
Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. is off to a modest start in 2020. Through three games has hauled in 11 passes for 155 yards and a touchdown on 22 targets. He has the potential for a big game in Week 4 against the Dallas Cowboys as Dallas has an explosive offense and a shaky pass defense. Those two factors could combine to force Cleveland to throw more passes than they have attempted over the past two games. Fantasy gamers can start Beckham as a solid WR2 for Week 4's matchup with Dallas.
New York Jets WR Jamison Crowder (hamstring) will play in Week 4 Thursday, Oct. 1, against the Denver Broncos.
Fantasy Spin: The tweet ended with "he's not 100 percent, but he'll give it a go." That doesn't exude confidence in your WR3 on a Thursday night. Keep that in mind.
Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb travels to Dallas to take on the Cowboys in Week 4. Chubb could see an increased workload as Kareem Hunt's status for Week 4 is in question after he missed Wednesday's practice with a groin injury. If Hunt is unable to suit up, Chubb can be treated as a solid RB1 in Week 4 and a lock-button building block in DFS contests. Even if Hunt does play, fantasy gamers can still lean on Chubb as a quality RB2 in fantasy. The Cowboys run defense ranks 15th in DVOA through three games. Their pass defense has been even worse, which sets this contest up as a potential shootout. The Browns should make plenty of trips to the red zone, so Chubb has a good shot at finding the end zone this weekend.
Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield heads to Dallas to take on the Cowboys in Week 4. The Browns have leaned heavily on the run through the first three games of the season, which has capped Mayfield's weekly upside. The third-year quarterback is averaging just 28.3 pass attempts per game and only topped 23 attempts once, in a Week 1 blowout against the Baltimore Ravens. Sunday's game against an explosive Dallas offense could force the Browns to throw with more frequency as there is potential for a shootout considering the Cowboys' shaky defense. Mayfield remains a QB2 in fantasy but he does have high upside, especially in DFS tournaments, for Week 4.
New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas (ankle) returned to practice on Wednesday. Thomas has been out the past two weeks while nursing an ankle sprain. In Wednesday's practice, Thomas was reportedly moving well and showing good signs of progress. He's currently questionable for Week 4 against the Detroit Lions. If he's able to go, Drew Brees will see a boost in his value, while Tre'Quan Smith and Emmanuel Sanders become more risky plays. Make sure to monitor the situation closely over the next few days if you're a Thomas owner.
New York Jets wide receiver Jamison Crowder (hamstring) is expected to play in the team's Week 4 game on Thursday night against the Denver Broncos. Crowder missed the team's previous two games while dealing with a hamstring injury. It doesn't sound as if Crowder will be 100% for the Thursday's game, but he is still worth starting as a WR3 in all fantasy formats, especially in PPR. In his only game this year, Crowder caught seven passes for 115 yards and a touchdown. The Jets have been sorely missing him in their passing game the previous two weeks.