By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
Amari Cooper comes up huge
This was a strange week of fantasy. We had some of our usual big performances but also some real duds from top fantasy players. So scores were down across the board in most leagues. The down games from elite players did in a lot of fantasy teams in a crucial week of games. Hopefully, you weren't impacted adversely from those down games.
Titans 30, Jaguars 9
Fantasy Stud: Derrick Henry. Henry had a career game and arguably the best fantasy game of any running back this season. He had 17 carries for 238 yards and four touchdowns. He averaged an impressive 14.0 yards per carry. This game really came out of nowhere for Henry. He had fewer than 60-rushing yards every game this season before this huge showing. We aren't sure this is going to be a trend for Henry the rest of the way, but this game certainly puts him back on fantasy radars.
Fantasy Dud: Leonard Fournette. Fournette returned from suspension and did next to nothing. He ran 14 times for just 36 yards and caught two passes for five yards. It was a really disappointing showing, something many of his fantasy owners have come to expect this year from Fournette. He has really been a bust because of missed games and some poor outings when playing.
Game Notes: Dede Westbrook was a bright spot for the Jaguars offense, having seven receptions for 88 yards and a touchdown. Westbrook has touchdowns two of three games.
Jonnu Smith injured his knee in the game and was unable to return. He has some sort of MCL injury and will miss the remainder of the season. Anthony Firkser should start for the Titans going forward.
Jets 27, Bills 23
Fantasy Stud: Elijah McGuire. McGuire ended up getting most of the work at running back because of an injury to Isaiah Crowell. He did well in an expanded role, rushing 17 times for 60 yards and a touchdown. He also caught three passes for 23 yards, giving him 83 total yards. McGuire could be the starter going forward and has some value in that role because of his total yardage potential.
Fantasy Dud: Zay Jones. Jones had a disappointing performance after torching this team just a few weeks back. He had just three receptions for 22 yards. Jones had scores two of three before this showing and at least four receptions four of five. He was just starting to gain traction but was a dud in this one.
Game Notes: Isaiah Crowell was injured early in the game with some sort of foot ailment. He was heading into the game already banged up, so this injury is a concern going forward. He could miss some time.
Josh Allen had another big rushing performance, hitting the 100-yard mark for the second straight game. He ran nine times for 101 yards and a touchdown. Allen has at least 99-rushing yards three straight games.
Browns 26, Panthers 20
Fantasy Stud: Jarvis Landry. Landry had another good performance, catching three passes for 57 yards and a touchdown. He also ran twice for 54 yards and another touchdown. He had 111 total yards and two scores. Landry has topped 100 total yards two straight games.
Fantasy Dud: Cam Newton. Newton had a rare down game for his standards, failing to score a touchdown. He was 26-of-42 for 265 yards with an interception. He also ran five times for 23 yards. This was the first time all season he failed to score a touchdown in a game. His rare poor showing came at a bad time for many fantasy teams.
Game Notes: Christian McCaffrey continued his red hot play, scoring two more touchdowns. He has multiple touchdowns two of three games and 13 total scores for the season.
Ian Thomas had a big game as the starting tight end for the Panthers. He caught nine passes for 77 yards. This was his first time all year with more than 50 yards. He has 14 receptions his last two games.
Packers 34, Falcons 20
Fantasy Stud: Julio Jones. Jones went from failing to scholarly in the year to scoring on a weekly basis late in the season. He had eight receptions for 106 yards and two touchdowns. Jones has touchdowns four of six games. He also has 100-yard games seven of his last eight. He is having another monster season.
Fantasy Dud: Tevin Coleman. Coleman continued his mediocre play. He ran 10 times for 45 yards and caught just a pass for negative four yards. Coleman has fewer than 50 total yards three straight games. He is becoming almost a nonfactor for fantasy teams despite starting in a high-powered offense.
Game Notes: Aaron Jones scored a touchdown for the fifth straight game. He ran 17 times for 78 yards and a touchdown. He also caught three passes for 28 yards, giving him 106 total yards.
Matt Ryan had his fifth three-touchdown game. He was 28-of-42 for 262 yards and three touchdowns with an interception. He has 30 total touchdowns this season.
Chiefs 27, Ravens 24
Fantasy Stud: Travis Kelce. Kelce had his usual big game, catching seven passes for 77 yards and a touchdown. Kelce has touchdowns three straight and five of six games. He has double-digit touchdowns and is over 1,100-receiving yards for the season. Kelce is having his best season to date and still has some games to pad his stats even more.
Fantasy Dud: Gus Edwards. Edwards had a favorable matchup and got his work but wasn't much of a help to fantasy teams. He ran 16 times for 67 yard and failed to catch a pass. It was a really poor showing for all his fantasy owners. Edwards is a hard fantasy player to trust because of his lack of work in the passing game, having just one catch all season.
Game Notes: Tyreek Hill had a 100-yard game for the fifth time this season. He caught eight passes for 139 yards. He has 100-yard games three of four.
Spencer Ware had a much better second start of the season, showing his total yardage potential. He had 15 carries for 75 yards and caught five passes for 54 yards. He finished with 129 total yards.
Dolphins 34, Patriots 33
Fantasy Stud: Tom Brady. Brady finally had a big showing, looking like the Brady of old. He was 27-of-43 for 358 yards and three touchdowns without a turnover. This was his first three-touchdown game since Week 7. Maybe this will be the game to get Brady going.
Fantasy Dud: James White. White had a rare game with few passing targets. He had just two catches for 15 yards and four rushes for 13 yards. He had at least five receptions nine games before this dud of a game. You expected much better from White based on his track record throughout the season in this offense.
Game Notes: Rob Gronkowski had his first 100-yard game since Week 1. He caught eight passes for 107 yards and a touchdown. He has touchdowns two of three games.
Ryan Tannehill made the most of his pass attempts. He was 14-of-19 for 265 yards and three touchdowns without a turnover. Tannehill has two straight three-touchdown games and multiple scores three straight.
Saints 28, Bucs 14
Fantasy Stud: Michael Thomas. Thomas had a couple down showings but returned to his big ways this week. He caught 11 passes for 98 yards. This was his fifth game with double-digit receptions. He is now over 100 catches for the year. Thomas had fewer than 45 yards two straight games before this one.
Fantasy Dud: Chris Godwin. Godwin was a big surprise dud, getting just a catch for 13 yards despite a favorable matchup and recent good play. Godwin had hit the 100-yard mark two of his previous four games. He also was expected to get more work with DeSean Jackson out of action. Godwin was targeted 10 times in the game, though. He just failed to connect throughout the game.
Game Notes: Drew Brees had some struggles for the second consecutive game. He was 24-of-31 for 201 yards and a touchdown with an interception. He did run in a score to give him two total scores.
Mark Ingram found the end zone, rushing 13 times for 52 yards and a score. he has touchdowns three of five games.
Giants 40, Redskins 16
Fantasy Stud: Saquon Barkley. Barkley just continues to amaze every week. He ran 14 times for 170 yards and a touchdown. He also caught four passes for 27 yard, giving him 197 total yards. Barkley has four straight 100-yard games. Barkley could have done even more damage if the game wasn't such a blowout. He is up to 1,753 total yards for the season and 13 touchdowns.
Fantasy Dud: Adrian Peterson. Peterson continued his late-season slide. He rushed 10 times for 16 yards and caught a pass for three yards. Peterson has fewer than 55-rushing yards three of four and four of six games. The lack of top quarterback play has really impacted Peterson late in the year.
Game Notes: Mark Sanchez was benched in this one, going 6-of-14 or 38 yards and two interceptions. Newly signed Josh Johnson entered and actually played pretty well. He was 11-of-16 for 195 yards and a touchdown with an interception. He also ran seven times for 45 yards and a touchdown. Johnson could get the start next week for the Redskins.
Eli Manning had his second three-touchdown game of the year. He was 14-of-22 for 197 yards and three touchdowns without a turnover.
Colts 24, Texans 21
Fantasy Stud: T.Y. Hilton. Hilton continued his late-season surge. He had nine receptions for 199 yards. Hilton has 100-yard games three of four and at least 77 yards five straight. He has been heavily targeted lately, having double-digit targets three straight. Hilton is 14 yards shy of a 1,000-yard season.
Fantasy Dud: Deshaun Watson. Watson had a pretty quiet game, going 27-of-38 for 267 yards and a touchdown without a turnover. Watson has been just alright late in the year, having one touchdown three of four games. He has cooled a little at a bad time for all his fantasy owners.
Game Notes: Lamar Miller found the end zone for the second time in three games. He has scores four of six games. He wasn't much a factor rushing the ball, though, running 14 times for 33 yards and a score.
DeAndre Hopkins had just four catches for 36 yards but scored a touchdown. He has touchdowns six of eight games.
Chargers 26, Bengals 21
Fantasy Stud: Joe Mixon. Mixon had another strong game, rushing 26 times for 111 yards and a touchdown. He also caught a team-high five receptions for 27 yards. This was his second 100-yard rushing game of the year. Despite missing a few games, Mixon is over 1,100 total yards for the season and has seven touchdowns.
Fantasy Dud: Philip Rivers. Rivers didn't play bad but wasn't a help to fantasy teams. He had his worst game of the year, failing to have multiple touchdowns for the first time all season. He was 19-of-29 for 220 yards and a touchdown without a turnover. You expected better from Rivers in this prime matchup.
Game Notes: Justin Jackson was not a factor after showing pretty well the last two games. He ran seven times for 12 yards and caught two passes for 23 yards.
Keenan Allen scored a touchdown for the fifth straight game. He had five receptions for 79 yards and a touchdown.
49ers 20, Broncos 14
Fantasy Stud: George Kittle. Kittle had a career game, topping the 200-yard mark. He caught seven passes for 210 yards and a touchdown. He has at least six receptions four straight games. Kittle is over 1,000 yards for the season for the first time in his career. He has emerged as an elite fantasy tight end.
Fantasy Dud: Courtland Sutton. Sutton was a bust in his first game as the clear top target in this offense. He caught just two passes for 14 yards. You expected much better in a favorable matchup and as the top target int his passing game. Sutton has been up and down, having fewer than 15 yards two of three games.
Game Notes: Tim Patrick led the Broncos in receiver, catching seven passes for 85 yards. Patrick had not topped 30 yards in a game before this big showing.
Dante Pettis found the end zone for the third straight game. He had three receptions for 49 yards and a touchdown. Pettis has at least three receptions four straight games.
Cowboys 29, Eagles 23
Fantasy Stud: Amari Cooper. Cooper had maybe the best game of his career, continuing his great play with the Cowboys. He had 10 receptions for 217 yards and three touchdowns. Cooper has 180 or more yards two of three games. He also has at least eight receptions three straight. He has become an elite receiver in this offense.
Fantasy Dud: Josh Adams. Adams had his first really poor showing in a starting role for the Eagles. He ran seven times for 36 yards and didn't catch a pass. Adams had 84 or more rushing yards two straight before this dud of a game. He has just four catches all season, making him a bit of a risk for fantasy teams. If he doesn't run the ball well, he can post really poor fantasy numbers.
Game Notes: Dak Prescott had a huge performance, throwing for nearly 500 yards. He was 42-of-54 for 455 yards and three touchdowns with two interceptions. Prescott has multiple touchdowns three straight.
Ezekiel Elliott got his usual huge workload. He rushed 28 times for 114 yards and caught 12 passes for 79 yards. His reception total was a season high, having double-digit catches for the first time all season.
Raiders 24, Steelers 21
Fantasy Stud: JuJu Smith-Schuster. Smith-Schuster led the way for the Steelers at receiver, catching eight passes for 130 yards and two touchdowns. This was his first multiple touchdown game of the year for Smith-Schuster. He does have 100-yard games three of four. He is having a breakout season and producing elite receiver numbers despite playing alongside Antonio Brown.
Fantasy Dud: Antonio Brown. Brown picked a bad week to have his worst game of the fantasy season. He failed to hit double-digit fantasy points for the first time all year. Brown had just five receptions for 35 yards. He got his catches but his yardage numbers were way down. This was just the second time all year he had fewer than 50 yards.
Game Notes: Jaylen Samuels struggled to run the ball in his first NFL start but did well in the passing game. He ran 11 time for just 28 yards, but caught seven passes for 64 yards.
Jared Cook had his second consecutive 100-yard game. He had seven receptions for 116 yards. Cook is nearing a 1,000-yard season, being 175 yards shy with three games to play.
Lions 17, Cardinals 3
Fantasy Stud: Zach Zenner. Zenner was the surprise leading rusher for the Lions. He made the most of his work, running 12 times for 54 yards and a touchdown. He had just four carries all season before this big game. His good game went to waste, though, because Zenner was not started in a single league on our site.
Fantasy Dud: Kenny Golladay. Golladay was held in check, catching two passes for five yards. Golladay had his lowest yardage total of the season in this game despite being the top target in the offense. He had at least 50 yards four straight before this one. Golladay has big weekly potential but has been a dud some weeks because of the struggles the Lions are having throwing the ball down the stretch.
Game Notes: Trent Sherfield was the surprise leading receiver for the Cardinals, catching five passes for 77 yards. Sherfield had just a catch all year before this game.
Matthew Stafford was able to play with his back injury, but his numbers weren't nearly as good as usual for him. He was 15-of-23 for 101 yards without a touchdown or an interception. This was his lowest yardage game of the year.
Bears 15, Rams 6
Fantasy Stud: Bears defense. This unit was completely dominating against maybe the best offense in football. The Bears held the Rams to just six points and 214 total yards. Chicago also had four interceptions and three sacks. It was quite the performance on the big stage against a top offense.
Fantasy Dud: Jared Goff. Goff looked more like the Goff from his rookie season, getting picked off four times while failing to score a touchdown. He was just 20-of-44 for 180 yards. This was just the second time all year Goff failed to score a touchdown. He is on a bit of a cold streak, having one touchdown his last two games.
Game Notes: Jordan Howard was one of the few bright offensive spots in this game. He hit the 100-yard mark for the first time all year. He ran 19 times for 101 yards.
Todd Gurley had his worst game of the year. He ran 11 times for 28 yards and caught three passes for 30 yards. His 58 total yards was a season low.
The Detroit Lions signed free-agent cornerback Rashaan Melvin to a one-year, $3.5 million deal on Friday, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter. Melvin played for the Patriots in 2015 when head coach Matt Patricia was the defensive coordinator. The 29-year-old has been mostly a starter the last three seasons with the Colts and Raiders and had a career-high three interceptions with the Colts in 2017. He could be the replacement for Nevin Lawson, who signed with the Raiders earlier this week.
The Oakland Raiders signed free-agent quarterback Mike Glennon to a one-year, $2 million deal on Friday, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. The 29-year-old will be with his fourth different team in the last four seasons and will serve as Derek Carr's backup in silver and black. Glennon has played in 27 games (22 starts) and is 6-16 as a starter in his five seasons in the NFL. He has 35 touchdown passes, 20 interceptions and an 84.0 quarterback rating. Glennon won't be fantasy relevant.
The Pittsburgh Steelers informed safety Morgan Burnett that they will release him by April 1 per the player's request, according to his agent, Kevin Conner. Both parties discussed trade possibilities before the release, according to a source. Pittsburgh signed the safety to a three-year, $14.25 million contract last season that included a $4.25 million signing bonus. Burnett missed four of the first six games of 2018 due to injury and recorded 30 tackles and six pass deflections in a sub-package role in 11 games. The 30-year-old had previously played eight seasons with the Packers.
The Los Angeles Rams are matching the Detroit Lions offer sheet for restricted free-agent running back Malcolm Brown on Friday. Brown's deal with the Rams is for two years with a $3.3 million base salary, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. He'll receive $2.1 million in practice guarantees ($1 million base guaranteed and a $1.1 million roster bonus to be issued April 15). Brown landed on Injured Reserve in Week 13 with a clavicle injury. He played just 15 percent of the offensive snaps and had 264 yards from scrimmage and one receiving touchdown. He's merely depth behind Todd Gurley.
The New York Giants re-signed wide receiver Cody Latimer to an undisclosed deal on Friday. Latimer played in the first three games and the last two games of the 2018 season but just one of the 11 games in between in his first season in New York because of injuries. He battled a knee injury and also spent two months on Injured Reserve with a pulled hamstring. Latimer finished with only 11 receptions for 190 yards and one touchdown and also averaged 24.6 yards on five kickoff returns. He might have more opportunities to make noise in 2019 with Odell Beckham Jr. out of the picture, but Latimer still doesn't have much fantasy upside.
The New York Jets agreed to terms with free-agent quarterback Trevor Siemian on a one-year, $2 million deal on Wednesday, a source told NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Siemian can make up to $3 million in incentives. The 27-year-old former Bronco didn't play at all with the Vikings last year while backing up Kirk Cousins. He was the starter in Denver in 2016 and 2017, completing 59.3 percent of his passes for 30 touchdowns and 24 interceptions. New York's addition of Siemian likely means that veteran Josh McCown, a 40-year-old journeyman quarterback, will leave in free agency or retire. Siemian won't have any fantasy appeal in his new digs while backing up Sam Darnold.
The New Orleans Saints are expected to sign free-agent tight end Jared Cook, sources told NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Cook, who turns 32 next month, had a career year with the Raiders in 2018, catching 68 passes for 896 yards and six touchdowns. The veteran can stretch opposing defenses down the seam and should open up more space for star receiver Michael Thomas on the outside. While it would be foolish to expect Cook to put up better numbers than he did in Oakland, he should remain a strong TE1 option in the high-flying offense of the Saints.
Updating previous reports, Los Angeles Rams LB Clay Matthews' two-year deal has a $9.25 million base value with $5.5 million guaranteed.
Pittsburgh Steelers FS Morgan Burnett will be released by April 1, per the player's request, according to his agent, Kevin Conner.
Free-agent QB Robert Griffin III (Ravens) re-signed with the Baltimore Ravens Friday, March 22, on a two-year deal. Financial terms weren't disclosed, and the deal is pending a physical.
The New Orleans Saints signed long-time Minnesota Vikings punt returner Marcus Sherels to an undisclosed one-year deal on Thursday, according to a source. The 31-year-old was the Vikings primary punt returner for the last eight years and averaged 12.0 yards per punt return in 2018 to finish in the league's top five for the third time in the last six seasons. He was also used occasionally as a kickoff returner and was a backup cornerback. New Orleans ranked in the league's bottom 10 teams in punt return yardage the last two years. Sherels won't be an option in most fantasy leagues with his move to the Saints.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers TE O.J. Howard (ankle) spent time running routes and catching passes from Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes Thursday, March 21.
Fantasy Spin: Howard was having a TE1 campaign in 2018 before an injury ended his season early, but he should be back at full strength well before the start of next season. He is a big-play weapon from the tight end spot and could finish as a top-five fantasy option at his position.
The Baltimore Ravens re-signed backup quarterback Robert Griffin III on Thursday to an undisclosed two-year deal. The 29-year-old will continue to back up starter Lamar Jackson in 2019. The former first-round pick can be an invaluable source for Jackson as he matures heading into his second season, but RG3 will continue to have no fantasy value.
Chicago Bears RB Jordan Howard is unlikely to have a role in the offense if he remains with the team in 2019, in the opinion of Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune.
Fantasy Spin: Howard has always struggled to make an impact in the passing game, and after regressing as a between-the-tackles runner last year, the Bears don't have much incentive to feature him in the offense. Feel free to take a flier on him in the final rounds of drafts, but don't count on him to be a contributor for your fantasy squad.
The Indianapolis Colts signed free-agent outside linebacker Justin Houston to a two-year deal worth $24 million on Thursday, a source told NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Houston had nine sacks for the Chiefs last year, but he was cut with the team trying to get younger and defense while transitioning from a 3-4 base defense to a 4-3 scheme. The Colts also run a 4-3, but they project to use him as a defensive end for the first time in his career. The 30-year-old has dealt with a nagging knee injury in recent years but still has 18.5 sacks in the last two years. The veteran will certainly help boost a weak Indy pass rush from a season ago.
Washington Redskins TE Jordan Reed (toe) has been working out with teammates this offseason, according to RB Adrian Peterson.
Fantasy Spin: Reed managed to play in 13 games last season, but it didn't translate into much production on the field. Between constant health issues and slipping per-game numbers, Reed is no more than a late-round lottery ticket heading into 2019.
Los Angeles Rams WR Cooper Kupp (knee) said his recovery is where it is 'supposed to be' at this point in the process.
Fantasy Spin: Kupp is expected to be ready for the start of the 2019 season. He was Jared Goff's go-to target on third downs and in the red zone prior to the injury, and Kupp should be able to deliver WR2 numbers, especially in PPR formats.
Los Angeles Chargers TE Hunter Henry (knee) is expected to be ready for the start of OTAs, according to general manager Tom Telesco.
Fantasy Spin: Assuming he doesn't suffer any setbacks, Henry should open the year as the starting tight end for the Chargers and a low-end TE1 candidate for fantasy owners.
Free-agent PK Stephen Gostkowski (Patriots) is making progress in contract talks with the New England Patriots. Gostkowski has also received interest from other teams.
Fantasy Spin: Gostkowski struggled at times this past season but still can be a weekly starting option in all fantasy leagues.
Free-agent DT Al Woods (Colts) met with the Detroit Lions Thursday, March 21.