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As NFL trade deadline looms, Dolphins say Tua is 'our QB'

Fri Oct 22 1:02pm ET
AP Sports Writer

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) The story line has not changed over the last couple of months, nor did Miami coach Brian Flores' answer on Friday from when he was first asked about the future of quarterback Tua Tagovailoa months ago.

''Tua's our quarterback,'' Flores said.

That's not in dispute - for now, at least.

The NFL trade deadline is about a week and a half away. And the calendar getting closer to Nov. 2 combined with Miami on a five-game losing streak means it was inevitable that the buzz suggesting that the Dolphins may be looking to acquire embattled Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson - who has been accused of sexual assault and harassment in lawsuits filed by 22 women, but not charged - would get louder.

The Houston Chronicle reported Wednesday, citing unnamed sources, that the Texans and Dolphins ''have intensified their efforts to consummate'' a deal for Watson, who has been seeking a trade since at least January. The lawsuits prompted investigations from the NFL and, according to an attorney representing the women suing Watson, the FBI, among others.

''We're happy with the quarterback, our quarterback situation, and I'll leave it at that,'' Flores said. ''Which is what I've said multiple times.''

Tagovailoa - who missed nearly four full games this season with fractured ribs, a problem he's still playing through - is 7-5 as a starter in parts of two seasons in Miami, completing 64% of his passes with 14 touchdowns and seven interceptions. Among all quarterbacks since the start of last season, with at least five starts, Tagovailoa ranks 31st in passer rating (87.0) and 39th in yards per game (181.4).

''I think his preparation, the way he practices and the way he performs has been good,'' Flores said. ''I thought he played very well last week. He was out for a couple of games, for a few games, and he came back and played, I thought, very well last week. I think his psyche is in a good place. He's a confident kid. He's a tough kid.''

Watson, who signed a $156 million, four-year extension that is scheduled to begin next season, averaged 301.4 yards per game last season with a 112.4 rating and led the NFL with 4,823 yards passing. He has not played this season following the trade demand and the unresolved legal issues.

Flores said the ongoing trade chatter, on top of a five-game slide, isn't affecting the Dolphins at practice or meetings. The Dolphins (1-5) host Atlanta (2-3) on Sunday.

''Our focus is on Atlanta,'' Flores said. ''And that's really where our focus should be.''

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Player Notes
Dallas Goedert Oct 22 1:40pm ET
Dallas Goedert

Philadelphia Eagles tight end Dallas Goedert will play without restrictions in Week 7 against the Las Vegas Raiders after returning from the Reserve/COVID-19 list this week, according to head coach Nick Sirianni. Goedert tested positive for the virus and missed the Week 6 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but he's back and ready to roll as the team's top pass-catching tight end. And now that Zach Ertz has been traded to the Arizona Cardinals, Goedert has even more fantasy appeal as a locked-in TE1, beginning this weekend against a Raiders squad that has allowed 24 receptions and four touchdowns to opposing tight ends in the last three weeks. Return Goedert to all starting fantasy lineups for Week 7.

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Justin Fields Oct 22 1:40pm ET
Justin Fields

Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields will take on a Buccaneers defense that is allowing the fourth most fantasy points to opposing passers this season. The Bears have deployed a run-heavy outfit with Fields under center and the results offensively have been mixed at best. Chicago wants to be a run-first team but may struggle to maintain that discipline against an explosive Tampa Bay offense. The Bears are 12.5-point underdog's and will need to score points in this game to compete. The Buccaneers secondary this season has allowed 16 total touchdowns to quarterbacks this season, including 19 or more fantasy points to four different passers. Fields is progressing each week and this could be a breakout performance. The rookie will be a low-floor/high-ceiling fantasy option heading into a week with plenty of teams on Bye Week.

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Nick Chubb Oct 22 1:40pm ET
Nick Chubb

Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said he's "hopeful" that running back Nick Chubb (calf) and right tackle Jack Conklin (knee) can return for a Week 8 showdown with the division-rival Pittsburgh Steelers on Oct. 31. Chubb has missed the last two games with injury, but with an extra 10 days of rest before their next game, he has a good chance of being ready to go as the team's lead back. Backup D'Ernest Johnson put the league on notice by gaining 146 yards on the ground and a touchdown on 22 carries in the Thursday night win over the Denver Broncos, but he'll likely serve in a change-of-pace role once Chubb is back. Kareem Hunt (calf) will miss at least two more games while on Injured Reserve. Chubb will be a must-start RB1 in Cleveland's No. 1 rushing offense when he returns to action.

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Darnell Mooney Oct 22 1:30pm ET
Darnell Mooney

Chicago Bears wide receiver Darnell Mooney will go up against a Buccaneers defense in Week 7 that is allowing the seventh most fantasy points to opposing wide receivers. Mooney, once again, was limited in practice on Thursday with a groin injury but that designation has become a weekly occurrence. The 23-year-old's season is off to a disappointing start, totaling only 306 yards through the first six games. Mooney's targets are on the rise and is averaging 6.66 targets a game over his last three played. Tampa Bay's secondary has allowed 10 different receivers to post seven or more fantasy points against them but Mooney's floor should make fantasy teams hesitant in Week 7.

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Patrick Mahomes Oct 22 1:10pm ET
Patrick Mahomes

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes has struggled with turnovers this season, but he will draw a favorable matchup versus the Tennessee Titans defense in Week 7. For the season, Mahomes has passed for 1,887 yards with 18 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He also has scored one touchdown on the ground. Despite the uptick in interceptions this season, Mahomes faces a Titans defense that is allowing close to 292 yards through the air per game and 12 touchdowns versus four interceptions on the season to QBs. This matchup is projected to be an offensive battle, and there should be plenty of opportunities for Mahomes to put up big numbers. Fantasy managers should continue to roll with Mahomes as a QB1 on Sunday.

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Jonnu Smith Oct 22 1:10pm ET
Jonnu Smith

New England Patriots tight end Jonnu Smith has been a dud basically all season long. In fact, Smith has 16 receptions through the first six games of the regular season. Over the last two contests, Smith has three total receptions. Fellow tight end Hunter Henry is getting a majority of the red zone chances right now. Although, Smith does have a favorable matchup against the New York Jets in Week 7. Sadly, it's tough for fantasy managers to believe he'll actually be trustworthy. He'll be a desperation option for this week and should be avoided in most formats right now.

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Darrel Williams Oct 22 1:10pm ET
Darrel Williams

Kansas City Chiefs running back Darrel Williams rushed for 62 yards with a pair of touchdowns in his first start of the season in Week 6 and will look to carry that momentum into a Week 7 matchup versus the Tennessee Titans. Williams played 72% of the backfield snaps last week with Clyde Edwards-Helaire (knee) on injured reserve. The Titans defense has allowed around 88 yards per game on the ground to opposing running backs this season and given up five touchdowns on the year. Williams should remain the workhorse for the Chiefs backfield and should have some opportunities in the red zone with this matchup looking like an offensive shootout on Sunday. Managers should feel confident with Williams as their RB2.

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Tyreek Hill Oct 22 1:10pm ET
Tyreek Hill

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill (quadriceps) hasn't practiced this week with a quad injury, but he also sat out of practice several times before Week 6 and suited up and had nine receptions for 76 yards and a touchdown. Hill has proven that he doesn't need to practice to play on Sundays, and fantasy managers shouldn't have much fear at the moment of his upcoming status. As long as Hill is in uniform, he will be one of the top options at wide receiver this week against a vulnerable Titans defense. The Titans are allowing 236 yards per game to opposing wide receivers, and Hill should be able to take advantage against a weak secondary for a big day on Sunday. Both the Chiefs and Titans have had poor play from their defenses, and Hill should have plenty of opportunities to do damage in Week 7. If Hill were to miss the contest, wide receivers Byron Pringle, Demarcus Robinson and Josh Gordon would all see an uptick in playing time, but tight end Travis Kelce and wide receiver Mecole Hardman would be the top options in the passing game.

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Mecole Hardman Oct 22 1:10pm ET
Mecole Hardman

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Mecole Hardman has quietly carved out a nice role as the No. 2 wide receiver for the team and faces a juicy matchup in Week 7 versus the Tennessee Titans. The speedster will face a Titans pass defense that is allowing 236 yards per game to wide receivers this season and that should allow Hardman to have plenty of opportunities to make an impact on Sunday. For the season, Hardman has been serviceable with 26 catches for 261 yards and a touchdown. Star wide receiver Tyreek Hill (quad) has missed practice all week and if he were to miss Sunday's contest, Hardman's stock would rise significantly. Even with Hill on the field, Hardman should be considered a WR3 with upside in Week 7.

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Travis Kelce Oct 22 1:10pm ET
Travis Kelce

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce (neck) has been a limited participant in practice this week, but is fully expected to suit up for Sunday's matchup versus the Tennessee Titans. The Titans defense has been dismal as a whole this year, but their lone bright spot has been defending the tight end position. Defending against the tight end position, the Titans have only allowed 17 catches for 139 yards and two touchdowns through six weeks. Despite their success against the position, Kelce is a different animal and managers should expect another TE1 performance. The Titans defense as a whole is allowing just under 300 yards per game through the air and Kelce should play a big role in what should be one of the higher scoring contests in Week 7.

From RotoBaller

Curtis Samuel Oct 22 1:00pm ET
Curtis Samuel

Washington Football Team wide receivers Curtis Samuel (groin) and Cam Sims (hamstring) have been ruled out for Week 7 against the Green Bay Packers. Right guard Brandon Scherff (knee) will also miss another game. Samuel has been dealing with the same groin issue since June. He made his season debut in Week 4 but aggravated the injury in Week 5 and will now miss his second straight game. Fantasy managers were expecting Samuel to have a big role in Washington's offense in his first year in D.C., but he just hasn't been able to stay healthy. Terry McLaurin and Adam Humphries should continue to serve as the team's top two receivers, with rookie Dyami Brown and DeAndre Carter battling for targets as the No. 3 against Green Bay.

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Hunter Henry Oct 22 1:00pm ET
Hunter Henry

New England Patriots tight end Hunter Henry is finally coming around and putting together some successful games. He has found the end zone in three straight games heading into this favorable matchup against the New York Jets. A defense that has allowed the tenth-most fantasy points to tight ends this season. Henry isn't the most reliable option, but is certainly trending in the right direction. Fantasy managers should consider Henry on the low-end TE1 radar for this Week 7 matchup.

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Jakobi Meyers Oct 22 12:50pm ET
Jakobi Meyers

New England Patriots wide receiver Jakobi Meyers has seen 52 targets over the first six games of the season. Rookie quarterback Mac Jones appears to have found a favorite target in Meyers. Thus far, Meyers has hauled in at least four receptions in every game this season. He'll head into a plus matchup against the New York Jets defense in Week 7. A defense that ranks 23rd in pass DVOA so far in 2021. The targets should be there, so Meyers should be a high-end WR3 for this game.

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Antonio Gibson Oct 22 12:50pm ET
Antonio Gibson

Washington Football Team running back Antonio Gibson (shin) is listed as questionable for Week 7 against the Green Bay Packers on the final injury report. Gibson missed Wednesday's practice but has gotten in work the last two days, making it likely that he suits up as Washington's primary running back this Sunday. However, it's understandable to be skeptical about his workload after he carried the ball a season-low 10 times for 44 yards in the Week 6 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. The 23-year-old should be considered more of an RB2 this weekend, with pass-catching back J.D. McKissic potentially seeing a healthy amount of touches to spell Gibson in a game where Washington could be forced to play catch-up.

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Kendrick Bourne Oct 22 12:50pm ET
Kendrick Bourne

New England Patriots wide receiver Kendrick Bourne salvaged his fantasy value last week with a 75-yard touchdown. Sadly, fantasy managers cannot expect Bourne to do this on weekly basis. His fantasy value has been inconsistent this season and that's unlikely to change. Luckily for him, Bourne heads into a favorable matchup against the New York Jets in Week 7. A defense that has struggled to contain anyone this season. Fantasy managers shouldn't get too excited as Bourne is a boom-or-bust deep league option for this contest.

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Rob Gronkowski Oct 22 12:43pm ET
Rob Gronkowski

Tampa Bay Buccaneers TE Rob Gronkowski (ribs) has been ruled out for Week 7.

Fantasy Spin: O.J. Howard had a 6-49-1 breakout last week and could expound upon that as a midrange TE1. The Bucs move the ball around so much, he's going to be a risk.

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Lavonte David Oct 22 12:43pm ET
Lavonte David

Tampa Bay Buccaneers LB Lavonte David (ankle) and CB Richard Sherman (hamstring) have been ruled out for Week 7.

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Sammy Watkins Oct 22 12:40pm ET
Sammy Watkins

Baltimore Ravens running back Latavius Murray (ankle) and wide receiver Sammy Watkins (thigh) didn't practice again on Friday and are unlikely to be available in Week 7 against the Cincinnati Bengals. Watkins is set to miss his second straight game. With Murray likely sidelined, the Ravens will likely split the running back touches between veterans Devonta Freeman and Le'Veon Bell, with Ty'Son Williams serving as the No. 3. Freeman and Bell both found the end zone last week, but they will be low-ceiling RB3/flex options in deeper leagues against Cincy. First-round rookie receiver Rashod Bateman caught four of six targets for 29 yards in his season debut in Week 6 and should slowly see his role increase behind Marquise Brown, especially now that Watkins is injured.

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Antonio Brown Oct 22 12:33pm ET
Antonio Brown

Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Antonio Brown (ankle) has been ruled out for Week 7.

Fantasy Spin: The Bucs move the ball around a lot, and it's hard to see another receiver making a big enough impact to play in fantasy. O.J. Howard had a 6-49-1 line last week and could expound upon that as a midrange TE1.

From TheHuddle

Nelson Agholor Oct 22 12:30pm ET
Nelson Agholor

New England Patriots wide receiver Nelson Agholor has struggled to do much damage since the season opener. In fact, Agholor has three receptions or less in every game since Week 1. He'll get a Jets defense that ranks 23rd in pass DVOA so far in 2021. Despite a favorable matchup, it's unlikely that Agholor succeeds here. He was expected to be the deep threat for this offense, but quarterback Mac Jones rarely takes deep shots. Agholor should be on the bench for this game even with a plus matchup.

From RotoBaller