Tue Oct 22 8:43am ET
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
Chase Edmonds is trending up
Here is a friendly reminder. You can’t expect a backup to perform like a starter, especially when that starter was a star player. There is going to be a drop off nearly every time. And we are saying this because of the injury to some star players this past week. Teams are going to be looking for a replacement, which is going to be hard. The good news is these elite players are mostly at the quarterback position, which is a little easier to replace than a starting running back when it comes to fantasy lineups. Hopefully, you can get by the next few weeks until these guys come back.
Ryan Tannehill, Titans. Tannehill had an impressive first start of the season for the Titans. He hit the 300-yard mark and scored two touchdowns. He missed on just six passes the entire games. He moved the offense and got many player involved in the passing game. He will continue to start for the Titans and has streaming value for fantasy teams. He is capable of the big game as evident by past seasons.
Teddy Bridgewater, Saints. Bridgewater seems to be getting more comfortable in the offense every week. He was very impressive his last time out against a good Bears defense. Bridgewater threw for 281 yards and two touchdowns without an interception in Week 7. Bridgewater has thrown for 240 or more passing yards three straight games and has seven touchdowns during that stretch. Bridgewater might only get one more start before Drew Brees returns to the lineup, but that doesn't mean you should ignore him for this week if you need quarterback help.
Matt Moore, Chiefs. Patrick Mahomes is out the next few weeks, leaving Moore to run the show in this high-powered offense. You can’t expect Moore to produce like Mahomes but he has some potential in this offense. Moore was 10-of-19 for 117 yards and a touchdown in relief of Mahomes last week. We wouldn’t count on Moore to be a top fantasy starter but he can be worth a spot start because of injury or bye weeks.
Chase Edmonds, Cardinals. David Johnson was active last week but Edmonds carried the load at running back because the Cardinals didn’t want to put Johnson at risk in poor field conditions. Edmonds responded with a career game, hitting the 100-yard mark while scoring three touchdowns. Edmonds has touchdowns three straight gams and 60-plus total yards all three games. He is getting a lot more consistent work in the offense even when Johnson is active and playing. His fantasy value is on the rise.
Mark Walton, Dolphins. Walton got most of the work at running back for the Dolphins last week and this could be a trend going forward with the team likely trading Kenyan Drake. Walton ran 14 times for 66 yards and caught a pass. He has 65-plus total yards two straight games. Walton isn’t the most dynamic back but any starter has fantasy value. He will get his touches and has some flex appeal.
Ty Johnson, Lions. Johnson is set to start for the Lions with Kerryon Johnson injured. Johnson hasn’t gotten a whole to of work to date, but has obvious potential in a starting role. He has some upside as a flex option for fantasy teams while starting, making him a top add at the running back spot for this coming week.
Alex Erickson, Bengals. Erickson is starting to get more and more chances in the Bengals offense, serving as the slot receiver for the team. He had his first 100-yard game last week, catching eight passes for 137 yards. He has 12 receptions his last two games and been targeted 20 times in those two games. He has some reception potential in his current role with the team.
Mohamed Sanu, Patriots. Sanu was traded to the Patriots, adding some much needed quality depth to the receiver corps for New England. It isn't certain the role Sanu will play for the Patriots, but he could end up getting a lot of work once he gets up to speed with the offense. Sanu is definitely worth a look for fantasy teams that need receiver help.
Zach Pascal, Colts. Pascal continues to emerge in the Colts offense, having his best game last week. He had six receptions for 106 yards and two touchdowns. Pascal has 50-plus yards three of his past four games. His role should continue to increase in this offense. The Colts really like his size and athletic ability.
Danny Amendola, Lions. Amendola had his second 100-yard game of the season last week, catching eight passes for 105 yards on 11 targets. He is up and down in this offense but is capable of the big game. If you want to take a chance on him in the right matchup, go for it.
Kenny Stills, Texans. Stills returned from his hamstring injury last week and had his best game of the season, catching four passes for 105 yards. This was his first 100-yard game of the year. Stills has 85-plus yards two of five games. Stills could have an even bigger role in the weeks ahead with Will Fuller hurt. Stills is our top receiver waiver wire target for the week.
Preston Williams, Dolphins. Williams had a season high in receptions (six) and yards (82) in Week 7. He has really emerged as a reliable target in the offense, having at least four receptions four of six games. And he looks like a better option with Ryan Fitzpatrick starting for the Dolphins.
Devante Parker, Dolphins. Parker found the end zone again last week, giving him scores in three straight games. He had a season-high 10 targets in Week 7. Parker is looking like a better fantasy option these days, finding the end zone while also getting some catches and yards. He has 50-plus yards three of four games and at least three receptions all of those games.
Eric Ebron, Colts. Ebron scored a touchdown last week and had a season high in yards with 70. He has touchdowns three of his last five games. Enron remains kind of a touchdown dependent player but that doesn't mean you should shy away from him. He has been dropped in some leagues, being available in 31 percent of leagues.
Irv Smith, Vikings. Smith had a career high five receptions last week and tied a high with 60 yards. He had double-digit fantasy points for the first time all season in Week 7. Kyle Rudolph is still around, but it seems a matter of time before Smith emerges as the top pass-catching tight end in this offense. Smith just brings a lot more to the table, making him worth a speculative add for fantasy teams.
Jimmy Graham, Packers. Graham has been a disappointment much of the season, not living up to some preseason hype. He has shown well at times, though. He scored his third touchdown of the season last week and topped 60 yards for the second time this season. Graham can produce the big game in this offense, so he is worth a look if you need tight end help. Graham was dropped in some leagues, being available in 25 percent of leagues.
Jeff Paur is a two-time finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and won the FSWA award for Best Fantasy Football Article on the Web in 2011. He also was the most accurate expert in 2012, winning the FSTA Fantasy Football Accuracy Award. If you have any questions for Jeff, email him at email@example.com. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.
Indianapolis Colts running back Jordan Wilkins (ankle) and rookie wide receiver Parris Campbell (hand) were both listed as limited participants in Tuesday's estimation of their walkthrough practice. Wilkins was inactive in Week 11 but looks to be on track to play in Week 12 on Thursday against the Texans. It's notable with Marlon Mack (hand) out up to a month, but Jonathan Williams remains the more likely candidate for early down work on Thursday with Mack sidelined. Nyheim Hines should maintain his role as a third-down pass-catcher. Williams is the running back to target off waivers if you're in need, although both Williams and Wilkins could wind up sharing touches. Campbell is making progress but isn't expected to return until next month. He's a fine dynasty stash, but we wouldn't expect much fantasy production from him in redraft leagues the rest of the way.
Indianapolis Colts wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (calf) and tight end Eric Ebron (ankle) both remained sidelined for Tuesday's estimation of their practice report. The Colts aren't ruling Hilton out for a return on Thursday night against the Texans, but fantasy owners would like to see him at least get in a limited session on Wednesday. While he's been out since Week 8, Hilton would have high-end WR2 upside against a weak Texans secondary if he were to return this week. He's been notorious for having huge games against Houston in the past. Ebron looks to be in danger of sitting out on the short week. If that were to happen, Jack Doyle would have low-end TE1 appeal after throwing up a donut in Week 11. Zach Pascal has been the team's primary receiver in Hilton's absence, but he's a low-upside flex in this run-first offense.
Dallas Cowboys WR Noah Brown (knee) recently underwent a second surgery on his knee and is not expected to play this season. Brown is expected to be ready for the start of the offseason program, however.
Pittsburgh Steelers WR JuJu Smith-Schuster (concussion, knee), WR DIontae Johnson (concussion) and DE Olasunkanmi Adeniyi (concussion) were officially placed in the league's concussion protocol Tuesday, Nov. 19.
Los Angeles Rams WR Brandin Cooks (concussion) is expected to return from a two-game absence and play in Week 12 versus the Baltimore Ravens.
Fantasy Spin: Such news in previous years would have been cause for celebration, but Cooks' poor production this season - mostly due to the regression Jared Goff has experienced - makes the 26-year-old receiver a risky fantasy starter, especially given the matchup. There's also the matter of Cooks' troubling history with concussions, and the fact one more in 2019 could put his season - if not his career - in some jeopardy.
Arizona Cardinals RB Chase Edmonds (hamstring) was held out of practice again Tuesday, Nov. 19.
Fantasy Spin: It was likely a light session with the upcoming bye week, suggesting Edmonds isn't anywhere close to a return. Kenyan Drake appears to have taken control of the backfield for now, but we'll see if David Johnson can use the time off to close the gap and earn back some touches.
Indianapolis Colts CB Pierre Desir (hamstring) is expected to be a game-time decision for Week 12 against the Houston Texans on Thursday, Nov. 21.
Kansas City Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill (hamstring) will have an MRI on his hamstring in the next day or so, and there will be a better timetable after that.
Fantasy Spin: The Chiefs are on a bye in Week 12, and it's possible that he could avoid missing time. However, hamstrings are usually multiple-week issues.
Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill (hamstring) will undergo an MRI exam on his hamstring in the next day or so, according to a source. At that point they'll have a better idea for a timeline. Hill missed both of his targets on Monday night against the Chargers before leaving the game and never returning, so it was a tough pill to swallow for his fantasy owners. The good news is that the Chiefs are on their bye in Week 12, so Hill may not end up missing any games as long as his MRI yields positive results. If he's forced to miss time, Mecole Hardman and Demarcus Robinson would once again be attractive flexes in deeper leagues behind Travis Kelce and Sammy Watkins.
Arizona Cardinals running back Chase Edmonds (hamstring) was not seen at the portion of practice open to the media on Tuesday. The Cardinals are going on their bye in Week 12, so Edmonds will have another week to rest up. He's been out since Oct. 27 against the Saints. In the meantime, the Cardinals signed Kenyan Drake, and he has now leaped an injured David Johnson on the running back depth chart. Edmonds could get some run in Week 13 if he's ready and DJ is still slowed by his injuries, but Edmonds is still unlikely to have any standalone value the rest of the way. He can be left to the waiver wire in most leagues.
Free-agent TE Orson Charles (Broncos) re-signed with the Denver Broncos on an undisclosed deal Tuesday, Nov. 19. FB Andy Janovich (arm) was placed on the Reserve/Injured list.
Indianapolis Colts WR T.Y. Hilton (calf) can play Thursday, Nov. 21, if he receives medical clearance from doctors and clearance from the team, according to head coach Frank Reich.
Fantasy Spin: It's still pretty questionable with the short week. Hilton would be a WR2 against the Houston Texans.
Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said he's "excited about the potential return" of rookie running back Benny Snell Jr. (knee) for Week 12 against the Bengals. Snell has missed the last two games and will be evaluated in practice this week. The 21-year-old has 28 rushing attempts for 118 yards in five games this season. He could have a role in the team's backfield if he returns this weekend if James Conner (shoulder) remains sidelined, but Jaylen Samuels would still likely see most of the touches as Pittsburgh's lead back. Snell is only worth stashing in deeper leagues if you own either Conner or Samuels.
Retired tight end Rob Gronkowski won't rule out a return to football in the future, but he has no plans to come back in 2019. If he had planned to return to football this season, Gronk would have to do so by Nov. 30, per league rules. The Patriots offense could surely use Gronkowski on the field this year, as they predictably haven't gotten much production from the tight end position without him. The combination of Matt LaCosse, Ryan Izzo and Benjamin Watson has left a lot to be desired. The veteran Watson has become the primary pass-catching tight end of late, but he's a low-end TE2 for fantasy purposes. It looks like the Pats will continue to roll with Watson for the foreseeable future.
Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper (knee) is expected to play in Week 12 against the New England Patriots. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones himself is the source here, who said he expects his top wide receiver to play in a huge game against the 9-1 Patriots. Cooper played on just 55 percent of offensive snaps in Week 11, but Jones stating this early in the week that Cooper will play could be good news. Fantasy owners should keep a close eye on practice reports this week to see how limited Cooper is leading up to Sunday.
The Miami Dolphins waived running back Mark Walton on Tuesday morning. Walton was already suspended for violating the league's personal conduct policy, but the Dolphins were, "made aware of a police matter earlier this morning regarding Walton" according to Dolphins General Manager Chris Grier. Kalen Ballage will continue as the lead back for the Dolphins presumably for the rest of the season. Walton, still only 22 years old, may already be running out of chances in the NFL.
Cleveland Browns FS Morgan Burnett (Achilles') was placed on the Reserve/Injured list Tuesday, Nov. 19.
Los Angeles Chargers kicker Michael Badgley took advantage of the thin air in Mexico City and drilled a 49-yarder, the second longest good kick of his career. While Badgley did barely miss a 40-yard shot in the first quarter, he was able to make kicks from 27, 26, and 49 yards on the night. Badgley's leg kept LA in the game since their offense sputtered terribly once they were staring down the goal line, but unfortunately, the Chargers fell to the Chiefs anyway. Badgley has made 80% of his field goal tries and all of his extra points since he returned from a severe groin injury. He's not a superstar or Mr. Dependable, but he's getting the job done well enough for an LA franchise that struggled with kicking woes for years.
Los Angeles Chargers safety Rayshawn Jenkins made a slashing leap in front of a Chiefs receiver to snag his third interception of the year on Monday night. The pick was just the second one of the season for quarterback Patrick Mahomes, and LA is the first defense this season to hold Mahomes under 200 yards passing when he played a full game. Unfortunately, failures on the offensive side of the ball cost the Chargers the game even though the defense held KC to just 24 total points. While it looks like the season is a wash for LA, their defense can still be useful if they can play like that more often.