Mon Oct 2 3:39pm ET
Field Level Media
The first quarter of the NFL season wraps up when the New York Giants play host to the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night.
It's a big game for the injury-riddled Giants (1-2), who face road games at Miami and Buffalo the next two weeks. For the Seahawks (2-1), it's an opportunity to continue to build momentum with a third consecutive victory after dropping their season opener.
Seattle opened as a 1.5-point favorite and the line had moved to 2.5 by Monday afternoon with the Seahawks backed by 79 percent of the spread-line bets and 75 percent of the money at BetMGM. Their -125 moneyline has also been popular, drawing 61 and 70 percent of the action, respectively.
The same line at BetRivers has seen Seattle supported by 75 percent of the spread-line bets and 61 percent of the money.
This is almost a must-win game for the Giants considering their record and upcoming schedule. It's also a tough matchup minus arguably their best two offensive players in running back Saquon Barkley (ankle) and left tackle Andrew Thomas (hamstring).
The Seahawks have their own injury concerns along the offensive line, which could leave them exposed in pass protection, but look for the backfield duo of Kenneth Walker and Zach Charbonnet to help control field position.
Prediction: Seahawks 23, Giants 20
Walker scoring a touchdown at any point during Monday night's game (-110) has been the most popular player prop at BetMGM, behind only Walker at +600 to score the first touchdown. The second-year back has reached the end zone twice in consecutive games.
The Giants' ground game has been gashed for an average of 138 yards per game on 4.2 yards per carry, with opponents already racking up six rushing touchdowns.
The Giants have had 10 days off following a 30-12 loss at San Francisco in which they had just 150 yards of total offense.
The Seahawks have won their past two games, including a 37-27 decision against visiting Carolina last week. Walker III was named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week after rushing for 97 yards and two touchdowns and adding 59 yards on three receptions.
"Ken is out there just juking guys and making guys miss left and right," Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith said.
The Seahawks are 28-12 on Monday nights, the highest winning percentage (.700) in the league. They're 33-14-1 in prime-time games under coach Pete Carroll and also 5-0 at MetLife Stadium, including their only Super Bowl title in franchise history a decade ago.
The Seahawks and Giants met last season, with Seattle winning 27-13 at home on Oct. 30.
The Giants have yet to score a touchdown in the first half this season and have been outscored 63-6 before the intermission.
"I'd say we have a lot of improvement to do and that's what we're going to do. Try to improve," Giants coach Brian Daboll said.
In addition to Barkley (doubtful) and Thomas (out), Giants left guard Ben Bredeson (concussion) was cleared from the league's protocol. Outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari (hamstring), tight end Daniel Bellinger (neck) and defensive tackle D.J. Davidson (elbow) are also expected to play.
The Seahawks could get a boost from the return of safety Jamal Adams, who hasn't played since tearing his quadriceps in the 2022 season opener. It seems appropriate Adams would make his comeback in New York, where he started his career with the Jets.
"Judging from the practices that he's had the last couple of weeks, he's ready to go," Carroll said.
Seahawks cornerbacks Artie Burns (hamstring) and Tre Brown (concussion) were ruled out. Fellow corner Coby Bryant (toe) and tackle Charles Cross (toe) were listed as doubtful, but cornerback Riq Woolen (chest) is off the injury report after missing Week 3.
Tight ends Will Dissly (shoulder) and Noah Fant (knee) were among those listed as questionable.
Daboll said Barkley was expected to be a game-time decision, but he was officially listed as doubtful Saturday. Should Barkley sit, the Giants will lean on running backs Matt Brieda and Gary Brightwell.
Meanwhile, Thomas will miss his third straight game due to a hamstring injury and will be replaced by Josh Ezeudu.
Daboll said left guard Ben Bredeson (concussion) is in the final stages of the league's protocol. Outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari (hamstring), tight end Daniel Bellinger (neck) and defensive tackle D.J. Davidson (elbow) have been limited in practice.
THEY SAID IT
"I think it's just locking in from the get-go. It's not as easy as just getting points on the board as quickly as the other team does. We want to do that, we want to get that quick start, but even when we don't, it's like what we've been talking about, just staying the course and believing in the next play and taking advantage of every opportunity." - Giants inside linebacker Micah McFadden on what the Giants need to do differently.
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins (ribs) exited the Week 4 game against the Tennessee Titans with a rib injury. He suffered a rib fracture and early reports suggested he could be out for a few weeks. However, the 24-year-old said he does not think his injury will keep him out for an extended period of time, and he could potentially be back this week. According to Paul Dehner Jr. of The Athletic, it all depends on Higgins' soreness and pain tolerance. All that said, the Bengals will likely want to be careful with the young wideout, so it won't be surprising if he misses the Week 5 game against the Arizona Cardinals.
Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor (ankle) is expected to practice on Wednesday. The former rushing champion began the 2023 season on the PUP list after an offseason full of drama, including a public dispute with team owner Jim Irsay and a trade request. However, it appears Taylor is going to return and play for the Colts. If he is activated off the PUP list for the game against the Tennessee Titans in Week 4, he'll face a tough matchup with a defense that has not allowed a running back to surpass 67 rushing yards through four weeks. He also could be eased back into action and begin the season on a snap limit. Ultimately, some fantasy managers will still want to roll the dice on him, as running back production is often scarce in fantasy football.
Philadelphia Eagles offensive lineman Cam Jurgens (foot) is being considered week to week after leaving the Week 4 game against the Washington Commanders early with a foot injury. The second-year guard is the only new starter on the team's offensive line from last year's NFC Championship run. In his absence, 27-year-old Sua Opeta will fill in at right guard. This development shouldn't affect Jalen Hurts, D'Andre Swift, A.J. Brown, and DeVonta Smith too much, but it could weaken the overall offensive line just a bit.
Atlanta Falcons quarterback Desmond Ridder struggled mightily in the loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars in London. The second-year Cincinnati product completed 19 of his 31 passing attempts for 191 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. Atlanta scored just one touchdown and lost the game 23-7. Many have speculated that Taylor Heinicke could be given the keys to the offense after Ridder's early-season struggles, but head coach Arthur Smith said Ridder will remain the starter heading into Week 5. The Falcons host the Houston Texans in Week 5, so hopefully, Ridder can bounce back. Heinicke might be worth stashing in two-QB and superflex leagues. He could eventually be named the starter if Ridder can't turn things around.
Dynasty | Bears wide receiver Chase Claypool will remain away from the team this week after expressing displeasure in regards to his role in the offense. Dynasty Analysis: After showing a ton of promise in his first two years with the Steelers, the wheels have fallen off the proverbial cart. Claypool was traded at last year's deadline but was only able to muster 14 catches for 140 scoreless yards in seven games with the Bears last year. Through three games this season, he has four catches for 51 yards and a score. This relationship seems fractured beyond repair as Head Coach Matt Eberflus is basically keeping him home instead of even being around the team. Expect a trade or release in the coming days. Claypool's ranking of WR81 has nowhere to go but up at this point.
Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (concussion) is still in concussion protocol after missing Sunday's Week 4 game against the Los Angeles Chargers. He has now been in the protocol for a week. Head coach Josh McDaniels said the veteran signal-caller is still the team's starting quarterback when he returns from the injury. Rookie Aidan O'Connell threw for 238 yards and an interception in the Week 4 loss, but he did score a rushing touchdown on a QB sneak. Garoppolo's eventual return to the lineup should help Davante Adams and Jakobi Meyers get back on track.
Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Jalen Tolbert had his best game of the young season in the 38-3 shellacking of the New England Patriots on Sunday in Week 4. Tolbert hauled in all four of his targets for 53 yards, which was third on the team in this one behind tight end Jake Ferguson and receiver Michael Gallup. Both the catches and receiving yards were career-highs for the 24-year-old Tolbert, and he also made a big special-teams tackle early in the game. Fantasy managers can continue to ignore Tolbert, even in deeper formats, as he's currently behind CeeDee Lamb, Brandin Cooks and Gallup on the receiver depth chart in Dallas.
Chicago Bears head coach Matt Eberflus told ESPN1000 in Chicago that wide receiver Chase Claypool will remain away from the team this week as they prepare for their Week 5 matchup against the Washington Commanders on Thursday Night Football. The Bears made some changes to their offense heading into the Week 4 loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday, the biggest of which was making the struggling Claypool a healthy scratch. A report on Sunday also surfaced that the Bears are seeking to trade the 25-year-old wideout to a team that is in need of receiver depth. In the first three weeks this year, Claypool has just four catches for 51 yards and a touchdown on 14 targets. His fantasy value has hit rock bottom at this point, but a change of scenery could do him some good.
It wasn't much, but Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Brandin Cooks caught a season-high four passes on four targets for 27 receiving yards in the team's 38-3 blowout win over the New England Patriots in Week 4 on Sunday in Dallas. Cooks returned in Week 3 from a knee injury after missing one game and he has six receptions for 44 yards on 11 targets the last two weeks. The Cowboys really haven't had to throw the ball all that much early on this year, which has hurt Cooks in his first year with the team. That won't remain the a case all year, but the 30-year-old veteran wideout probably isn't going to have a very dynamic role in this offense unless CeeDee Lamb or Michael Gallup miss time with an injury.
Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Pat Freiermuth (hamstring) is getting his injured hamstring scanned on Monday. It's not just a tweak, reports the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Gerry Dulac. We'll have to wait to see what the tests show on his hamstring, but at this point, he seems pretty questionable to play in Week 5 against the division-rival Baltimore Ravens. Before leaving Sunday's loss to the Houston Texans, the 24-year-old had three catches on four targets for just seven yards. If you've been rolling with Freiermuth as your TE1, you'd be wise to start making backup plans for Week 5 now. If he's unable to play against Baltimore, Darnell Washington and Connor Heyward would both be in line for bigger pass-catching roles for the Steelers.
New England Patriots wide receiver Demario Douglas hauled in two of three targets for 45 yards against the Cowboys in Week 4. The Patriots lost by a score of 38-3, falling to 1-3 on the season. Douglas seemed to impress the Patriots' coaching staff throughout training camp and the first four weeks of the regular season, with the exception of his Week 2 fumble. The Patriots have a somewhat deep but not very top-heavy receiving corps, creating the possibility for Douglas to earn more targets if he keeps playing well. Dynasty managers would be wise to stash the Liberty product.
New England Patriots wide receiver Kendrick Bourne hauled in two of three targets for 36 yards in Week 4 versus the Cowboys. The Patriots lost by a score of 38-3, falling to 1-3 on the season. This was the Bourne's worst game of the season in terms of both statistics and fantasy production. The 28-year-old had a big Week 1, playing 91 percent of snaps and scoring two touchdowns, but has come back down to earth since then. Notably, he has yet to log more than 56 percent of snaps in a single game since the opener. He has lost playing time to DeVante Parker and Demario Douglas and isn't an appealing fantasy option for the time being.
Cleveland Browns All-Pro pass-rusher Myles Garrett (ankle) rolled his ankle in the Week 4 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday and was seen in a walking boot after the game, but it doesn't seem to be a major injury. The Browns are heading into their bye in Week 5, and Garrett assured reporters on Sunday that he's not going to miss any time with his ankle injury. It's great timing for the 27-year-old, the Browns defense and fantasy managers that have Garrett rostered in IDP leagues, as he should be back and ready to rock in Week 6 at home against the San Francisco 49ers. Garrett is one of the best pass-rushers in football and has nine tackles (eight solo) and 5.5 sacks through the first four weeks of the 2023 season.
Dynasty | Embattled Jets quarterback Zach Wilson completed 28-of-39 passes for 245 yards and two interceptions in the Jets close loss on SNF to the Chiefs. Dynasty Analysis: The Jets decided to stop playing it safe with Wilson and just let him loose in prime time. The results were shocking as he made difficult throws throughout the night and genuinely looked like a player who should have been taken in the top five of an NFL Draft. This is a small sample size and Wilson still made a critical mistake on a late fumble but the talk of Trevor Siemian taking over will be extinguished for now. Wilson is still off the dynasty radar but he at least has a pulse.
Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (finger) suffered a fractured finger on his left, non-throwing hand in the Week 4 win over the division-rival Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday, according to sources. Herbert's finger also suffered a gruesome nail injury, but he somehow finished the game and with the team's bye coming in Week 5, Herbert shouldn't miss any time. Once he returned to the game after having a split put on his fractured finger, he didn't take any snaps under center, except for a fourth-down sneak late in the game. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport said he doesn't see this being a major issue for Herbert moving forward. The 25-year-old saved his fantasy day on Sunday with two rushing touchdowns, but he should remain a strong QB1 option coming off the bye for a Week 6 matchup against the Dallas Cowboys on Monday, Oct. 16.
New England Patriots running back Rhamondre Stevenson rushed for just 30 yards on 14 carries against the Cowboys on Sunday evening. He also hauled in two of three targets for an additional 10 yards through the air. The Patriots lost by a score of 38-3, falling to 1-3 on the season. Stevenson's relative struggles were the product of an ugly game that saw Mac Jones get benched in the second half. With that said, the Patriots face the Saints next week, which could be a bit more favorable. Stevenson should be treated as a low-end fantasy RB2.
Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver George Pickens caught just three of his seven targets for 25 yards in the team's 30-6 blowout loss to the Houston Texans. Still, outside of running backs, the second-year pro led the team in receiving yards. The entire Pittsburgh offense sputtered against a beatable Houston defense. They also lost quarterback Kenny Pickett (knee) and tight end Pat Freiermuth (hamstring) to injuries. It appears as though Mitch Trubisky could get the start against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 5. The passing game can't get much worse, so Pickens will still be viewed as a flex option next week.
Pittsburgh Steelers running back Jaylen Warren received 14 opportunities out of the backfield in the team's 30-6 loss to the Houston Texans. The second-year pro turned eight carries and six catches into 55 total yards. Warren and Najee Harris nearly split the touches 50/50. The starter ran the ball 14 times and caught one pass on two targets. Both backs saw 49% of the snaps in the blowout loss. Warren and the Steelers face the Baltimore Ravens in Week 5. An already struggling offense could have a new quarterback in Mitch Trubisky, who is likely to start in place of Kenny Pickett (knee).
New England Patriots running back Ezekiel Elliott rushed just six times for 16 yards against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday afternoon. He added six receiving yards on two catches. The Patriots lost by a score of 38-3, falling to 1-3 on the season. Elliott was reportedly expected to handle the workload of an RB1 on Sunday, but that certainly did not happen. Not only did he and the offense struggle, but he was out-touched by Rhamondre Stevenson, 16 to eight. Elliott should not be started in fantasy football, and he can be dropped in leagues with 10 or fewer teams.
Pittsburgh Steelers running back Najee Harris cobbled together a fantasy-relevant performance for the Steelers in their 30-6 loss to the Houston Texans. The third-year pro ran the ball 14 times for 71 yards and caught one pass for 32 yards. His 100-yard performance was his first of the young season, despite his lowest snap percentage of the campaign. Backup running back Jaylen Warren received 14 touches in the game. The Steelers scored just six points on the afternoon as the offense continued to sputter. Harris and the Steelers face the Baltimore Ravens in Week 5, where quarterback Mitch Trubisky may start in place of Kenny Pickett (knee).