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FFL: Playoff Week 1 | NFL: Week 14

Micthell Trubisky helps Bears beat Cowboys 31-24

Thu Dec 5 11:51pm ET
By ANDREW SELIGMAN
AP Sports Writer

Players: Brett Maher, Dak Prescott, Allen Robinson, Amari Cooper, Ben Braunecker, Mitch Trubisky, Ezekiel Elliott, Anthony Miller, Taylor Gabriel, Michael Gallup, Javon Wims

Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky and wide receiver Anthony Miller (17) react following an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. Chicago won 31-24. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)


Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (10) celebrates with Bradley Sowell (85) after Trubisky threw a touchdown pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)


Dallas Cowboys' Ezekiel Elliott (21) runs out of a tackle of Chicago Bears' Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (21) during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)


Chicago Bears' David Montgomery (32) is tackled by Dallas Cowboys' Xavier Woods (25) during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)


Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (10) looks to throw during the first half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)


Chicago Bears' David Montgomery (32) runs past Dallas Cowboys' Sean Lee (50) during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)


Chicago Bears' David Montgomery (32) is tackled by Dallas Cowboys' Xavier Woods (25) during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)


Chicago Bears' Allen Robinson (12) celebrates a touchdown reception during the first half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)


Chicago Bears' J.P. Holtz (81) is chased by Dallas Cowboys' Darian Thompson (23) during the first half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)


Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky (10) throws during the first half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)


CHICAGO (AP) Mitchell Trubisky threw three touchdown passes and ran for a score in the Chicago Bears' 31-24 victory over Dak Prescott and the slumping Dallas Cowboys on Thursday night.

In a matchup between disappointing teams that made the playoffs last season, the Bears (7-6) came away with their fourth win in five games. The Cowboys (6-7) have lost seven of 10 since a 3-0 start.

Trubisky shook off an early interception near the goal line to complete 23 of 31 passes for 244 yards. He matched a season high for touchdown passes and scored on a 23-yard run early in the fourth quarter, making it 31-14.

Allen Robinson caught two TD passes, and Anthony Miller hadone as Chicago tied a season scoring high. Khalil Mack had a sack. Linebacker Roquan Smith left the game with a pectoral injury on the opening drive. But the Bears took out the NFC East leaders after beating the struggling Detroit Lions twice and New York Giants in recent weeks.

Facing a top 10 defense for the third week in a row, the Cowboys once again couldn't get their high-powered offense going.

NFL passing leader Prescott was 27 of 49 for 334 yards and a touchdown. Ezekiel Elliott ran for 81 yards - his fifth straight game under 100 - and two scores.

Michael Gallup had 109 yards receiving. Amari Cooper caught six passes for 83 yards and a touchdown, but the Cowboys lost their third straight. They lead Philadelphia by a half-game in the division.

Kept out of the end zone in a 13-9 loss at New England two weeks ago and then held to two touchdowns in falling 26-15 to Buffalo on Thanksgiving, the Cowboys went 75 yards for a score on the game's opening possession. Elliott lunged in from the 2 to cap a 17-play drive.

Dallas' Jourdan Lewis then intercepted Trubisky's pass with a neat play near the left pylon, dragging his left foot. He was initially ruled out, but the call was overturned by a replay review.

But it was all Bears after that.

Chicago tied it early in the second quarter when Trubisky hit Robinson with a 5-yard pass and took a 10-7 lead on a 36-yard field goal by Eddy Pineiro. Dallas' Brett Maher then missed a 42-yarder wide right. Chicago added to the lead in the closing seconds of the half with Trubisky's 8-yard pass to Robinson, and Miller's 14-yarder on a screen in the third made it 24-7.

INJURIES

Cowboys: WR Cedric Wilson jammed his left leg trying to catch a long pass in the closing minute. ... LB Leighton Vander Esch (neck), NT Antwaun Woods (knee) and S Jeff Heath (shoulder) were inactive.

Bears: WR Javon Wims (knee) walked off gingerly in the closing seconds of the first half after an awkward landing as he tried to make a leaping catch in the end zone. ... CB Prince Amukamara (hamstring) was inactive after being listed as doubtful. ... WR Taylor Gabriel (concussion), TE Ben Braunecker (concussion) and RT Bobby Massie (ankle) all missed their second straight game.

UP NEXT

Cowboys: Host Los Angeles Rams on Dec. 15.

Bears: At Green Bay on Dec. 15.

Player Notes
David Njoku Dec 6 1:40pm ET

Cleveland Browns tight end David Njoku (wrist) told reporters on Friday that he expects to be activated from the injured reserve for Sunday's game against the Cincinnati Bengals. Njoku has been sidelined since he fractured his wrist during Week 2's win over the New York Jets. He told reporters that he felt ready to play two weeks ago, but it is apparent that the team did not want to rush him back into action. It remains to be seen whether he will see a full complement of snaps in his first game back against Cincy. That being said, Njoku's Week 15 matchup against the Arizona Cardinals makes him a priority waiver add for any forward-thinking fantasy GM hurting at the tight end position. Arizona has been one of the worst defenses in the league when it comes to defending enemy tight ends.

From RotoBaller

Dwayne Haskins Dec 6 1:40pm ET

Washington Redskins quarterback Dwayne Haskins will go for his third straight victory in Green Bay on Sunday. Whether the Redskins pull off the upset or not, their two-game winning streak is in spite of their quarterback--not because of him. Haskins has just two touchdowns in six appearances this year, and hasn't eclipsed 215 passing yards in any of his starts. This is arguably the least interesting pass offense in the NFL, with both Haskins and his pass-catchers shouldering the blame for that distinction. The rookie's only upside for Week 14 comes in the form of potential garbage-time chances at production, as the Packers could reasonably be expected to win this one going away.

From RotoBaller

Derrius Guice Dec 6 1:40pm ET

Washington Redskins running back Derrius Guice couldn't have many better matchups in which to follow up on his excellent Week 13 outing. The Packers are allowing the sixth-most yards per game to running backs, and their 13 rushing touchdowns surrendered to RBs is the second-most. We know the Redskins would run the ball on every single play if they could, so look for Guice to once again be a focal point of his team's offensive game plan. Continuing to cap his upside is the presence of Adrian Peterson, but Guice proved last week that a backfield split isn't enough to totally neutralize him when the matchup is right. Guice should be viewed as a fantasy starter in all formats for Week 14.

From RotoBaller

Raheem Mostert Dec 6 1:20pm ET

San Francisco 49ers running back Raheem Mostert erupted for 154 scrimmage yards and a touchdown in Week 12, rendering starter Tevin Coleman obsolete. The fifth-year back has been explosive in limited opportunities this season, averaging 5.9 yards per tote, but it may not translate into increased usage in Week 13 against the New Orleans Saints. With Matt Breida (ankle) returning and Coleman inevitably in the mix, Mostert will likely revert to his standard change-of-pace role. Against a tough Saints rush defense, the Niners may play the hot hand, giving Mostert an upside of double-digit touches. But due to the high backfield uncertainty, fantasy managers should prudently view him as a flex option.

From RotoBaller

Evan Engram Dec 6 12:43pm ET

New York Giants TE Evan Engram (foot) is expected to play in Week 14 after missing the previous three games with a foot injury. 'All indications are he'll be ready to go,' Giants head coach Pat Shurmur said before practice Friday, Dec. 6.

Fantasy Spin: A return for Engram, who ranks sixth among tight ends with an average of 13.7 PPR points per game, would be a welcome sight for his fantasy teams who have had to make do without him for the last month. We'll, of course, check the practice and injury reports leading up to Monday night's game in Philly, but the light appears green at the moment.

From TheHuddle

Golden Tate Dec 6 12:43pm ET

New York Giants WR Golden Tate (concussion) is expected to play in Week 14, head coach Pat Shurmur said prior to practice Friday, Dec. 6.

Fantasy Spin: Tate has been the Giants' most productive pass-catcher, averaging 15.2 PPR points per game since making his season debut in Week 5, and would be a high-end flex, low-end WR2 play in a great matchup Monday if he indeed returns after sitting out Week 12. Stay tuned ...

From TheHuddle

Sterling Shepard Dec 6 12:40pm ET

New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard will see a downtick in value with both Golden Tate (concussion) and Evan Engram (foot) returning on Monday night. Shepard will move to the boundary receiver role with Tate back, which is actually a boost to his value, but there just simply might not be enough targets to go around. Eli Manning is also not able to buy time in the pocket for deep passes like Daniel Jones was, so Shepard may be less likely to hit on the big play. He's still viable as a WR4 or WR3 in deeper leagues, but he's far less reliable than he had been.

From RotoBaller

Darius Slayton Dec 6 12:40pm ET

New York Giants wide receiver Darius Slayton is off the fantasy radar with Eli Manning back under center and Evan Engram (foot) and Golden Tate (concussion) back on the field. Slayton will now be the 4th option in the passing game (perhaps 5th behind Saquon Barkley) with a quarterback who hasn't played many games with him and isn't as prone to taking deep shots down the field. It all makes Slayton way too risky for fantasy lineups.

From RotoBaller

Ryan Tannehill Dec 6 12:40pm ET

Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill has quietly been producing consistent QB1 numbers since his insertion in the starting lineup six weeks ago. Tannehill has the Titans 5-1 since that time and firmly in the playoff picture, but Week 14 represents a crucial matchup. Tannehill and the Titans will face an exploitable Oakland Raiders Defense this week, where he can safely be counted on for the first round of the fantasy playoffs. Tannehill is the QB6 overall since becoming the starter, and it would not be surprising to see him flirt with that status this week as well.

From RotoBaller

T.J. Logan Dec 6 12:33pm ET

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB/KR T.J. Logan suffered a broken thumb in practice Friday, Dec. 6, and is expected to miss the rest of the season. Logan has been the Buccaneers' primary kickoff and punt returner, and RB Dare Ogunbowale (kickoffs) and WR Justin Watson (punts) are now expected to handle those duties.

From TheHuddle

Austin Hooper Dec 6 12:03pm ET

Atlanta Falcons TE Austin Hooper (knee) is practicing Friday, Dec. 6.

Fantasy Spin: It's unknown if it was a full practice, but he's trending toward returning after a month-long absence against the Carolina Panthers. It's an uninspiring matchup, but he'll be a low-end TE1 option.

From TheHuddle

Baker Mayfield Dec 6 12:00pm ET

Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (hand) threw without a wrap on his hand at Friday's practice and "looked good" according to beat reporters covering the session. It was also reported that there is no visible bruise on the back of the quarterback's hand after he dinged it on a defender's facemask during Week 13's loss. Mayfield has ramped up his activity as the week has gone on, a good sign for his availability for Sunday's matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals. If Mayfield does suit up, which looks likely, he can be treated as a high-upside QB2 for the first week of the fantasy playoffs.

From RotoBaller

Julio Jones Dec 6 11:53am ET

Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (shoulder) is practicing Friday, Dec. 6.

Fantasy Spin: It's unknown if it was a full practice, but Jones looks to be good to go this week against the Carolina Panthers. He caught six balls for 97 yards against them a few weeks ago. It's a midrange matchup, and he's a great WR2 this week.

From TheHuddle

Saquon Barkley Dec 6 11:50am ET

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley figures to see a boost playing alongside former, and new, starter Eli Manning. It's not because Manning will make the Giants offense more effective, but because he's essentially a statue in the pocket. The Eagles run defense is 9th in PPR-points allowed to running backs, so Barkley isn't likely to carve them up on the ground, but Manning's lack of mobility has historically lead to more dump-off passes to running backs. While Daniel Jones would use his legs to create yardage, Manning will likely use Saquon Barkley more. Barkley's lack of receiving game usage has lowered his fantasy ceiling, but its return may now bump up his fantasy floor. You're starting him in season-long leagues, and he might be a sneaky captain for DFS tournaments in a showdown slate with the Giants figuring to be trailing often in this game.

From RotoBaller

Cleveland Browns Dec 6 11:50am ET

The Cleveland Browns Defense draws an excellent Week 14 matchup at home against the Cincinnati Bengals. Cleveland comes into the game installed as seven-point favorites in a game with a low 41.5-point over/under. The Bengals have not been very effective on offense, while their leaky offensive line has allowed 40 sacks this season, seventh-most in the league. Cleveland is without the suspended Myles Garrett but Olivier Vernon is plenty capable of taking advantage of Cincy's QB protection issues. Treat Cleveland as a top-five fantasy defense in Week 14.

From RotoBaller

Golden Tate Dec 6 11:50am ET

New York Giants wide receiver Golden Tate (concussion) figures to be back in the lineup just in time for a juicy matchup against an Eagles secondary that has been susceptible to big plays to slot wide receivers. However, Tate has never played a game with Eli Manning under center since Manning was benched before Tate was activated from suspension. Eli likes to throw the ball underneath and over the middle, so Tate figures to be a good security blanket, but their lack of comfort with one another, and the return of Evan Engram (foot), may cap Tate's upside. He's more of a low-end WR3 in PPR and half-PPR leagues.

From RotoBaller

Odell Beckham Jr. Dec 6 11:40am ET

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. draws an excellent Week 14 matchup against a weak Cincinnati Bengals secondary. Cincinnati's pass defense ranks 31st in DVOA while allowing the 18th-most fantasy points per game to the wide receiver position. Beckham draws an excellent matchup as he will see primary coverage from Cincy cornerback B.W. Webb. Webb has struggled in coverage this season, giving Beckham a decided advantage on Sunday. Treat Beckham as a high-upside WR2 for Week 14.

From RotoBaller

Daniel Jones Dec 6 11:40am ET

New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones was seen at practice on Friday no longer wearing a boot on his injured ankle. However, he is still not participating but is on the bike and doing strength work. This provides even further confirmation that Eli Manning will likely be under center for the Giants this week. However, with the game on Monday night, Jones could still play if he is able to return to full practice tomorrow. It just seems unlikely.

From RotoBaller

Jarvis Landry Dec 6 11:40am ET

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry has been on quite the hot streak over his past six games, having hauled in 40 catches and five touchdowns over that span. Landry has overtaken Odell Beckham Jr. as the team's No. 1 wide receiver and should see a healthy target share against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 14. Cincinnati doesn't allow many points to opposing wideouts but their pass defense ranks just 31st in the league in DVOA. This is most likely a result of teams building big leads and running the ball heavily in the second half of games. Landry can be trusted as a rock-solid WR2 in all formats for the first week of the fantasy playoffs.

From RotoBaller

Eli Manning Dec 6 11:40am ET

New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning will likely be under center when the Giants take on the Eagles on Monday night. Manning was not particularly good when he played early in the season and lacks Daniel Jones' mobility. He's also playing against an Eagles team looking to make up for an embarrassing loss to the Dolphins and still fighting for the playoffs after the Cowboys loss on Thursday. All logic suggests that Manning will not be fantasy relevant. However, a fading star given one last chance against a rival on primetime TV has all the makings of fantasy and Hollywood drama, so Eli could simply torch the Eagles' suspect secondary. He's not a recommended play in one QB leagues or DFS cash games, but if you wanted to throw him in a GPP lineup or slide him into the starting spot in a two-quarterback league, it might be a fun night.

From RotoBaller