Guest of the League
Appleton Papermakers Blue Est. 2004
FFL: Preseason | NFL: Week 1

Studs and Duds: Championship Weekend

1548086896
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer

Williams scores three times


Now that was a much better week of action. It was a shame to see some bad officiating impact the outcome of the games, but at least the games were highly entertaining. The games were really captivating. The fantasy performances were pretty good, but probably not as high scoring as most expected in these matchups. Here is to hoping you had some of those big performances in your fantasy lineup.

Rams 26, Saints 23

Fantasy Stud: Brandin Cooks. There were not a ton of big performances in a game expected to be a shootout. Cooks was one of the few bright spots offensively, catching seven passes for 107 yards. This was his first 100-yard game since Week 11. He had fewer than 70 yards six straight games before this big performance. The Rams will need Cooks to come up big in the Super Bowl if they hope to win.

Fantasy Dud: Michael Thomas. Thomas was really held in check for his standards, catching just four passes for 36 yards. You didn't expect this performance from Thomas, who had double-digit receptions and 171 yards the previous week. His yardage total was his second worst of the season. Thomas still had a tremendous season but fell flat in this one.

Game Notes: Todd Gurley struggled to do much, rushing four times for 10 yards and a touchdown. He caught a pass for three yards. C.J. Anderson got a lot more work than Gurley, rushing 16 times for 44 yards.

Alvin Kamara had double-digit receptions for the second time this season. He caught 11 passes for 96 yards. He found little room running the ball, though, rushing eight times for 15 yards.

Patriots 37, Chiefs 31

Fantasy Stud: Damien Williams. Williams continued his strong play as the lead back for the Chiefs. He had three touchdowns in this game. He ran 10 times for 30 yards and a score. Williams also caught five passes for 66 yards and two touchdowns. He had touchdowns six straight games to end his season. He made a strong case to be the lead back for the Chiefs next season. And if that is the case, he'll have high fantasy value in this offense.

Fantasy Dud: Tyreek Hill. The Patriots did a great job of limiting Hill, who had just a catch for 42 yards. It was a big surprise he had just a touch in the game. This game was his lowest yardage total of the entire season and only game he had just one touch. Hill is another player that had a monster season, but this dud will likely haunt him in the offseason.

Game Notes: Sony Michel had his second straight 100-yard game. He ran 29 times for 113 yards and two touchdowns. This was his sixth 100-yard game of the season.

Sammy Watkins hit the 100-yard mark, catching four passes for 114 yards. He had 10 catches for 176 yards in two playoff games, returning in a big way from his foot injury.

Player Notes
Frank Clark Apr 22 10:23am ET

Seattle Seahawks DE Frank Clark has had the Indianapolis Colts, Kansas City Chiefs and New York Jets call about acquiring him, according to sources. The Seahawks are believed to be seeking a first-round pick for Clark.

T.J. Yeldon Apr 22 8:33am ET

Free-agent RB T.J. Yeldon (Jaguars) signed a two-year deal with the Buffalo Bills Monday, April 22. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

Fantasy Spin: Yeldon has been a versatile, yet unspectacular, back in Jacksonville. He has spurts of usage, particularly when filling in for injuries, and it'll be much of the same in Buffalo. He posted 55 catches for 487 yards and four scores through the air last year, which will make him an RB4 option in PPR leagues.

Da'Norris Searcy Apr 22 3:03am ET

Carolina Panthers SS Da'Norris Searcy (concussion) will return in 2019 after spending most of the season on injured reserve, but it's unclear where he'll play with SS Eric Reid on the field.

Apr 22 3:03am ET

Carolina Panthers CBs Ross Cockrell (leg) and Kevon Seymour (shoulder) have each been cleared for phase one of the team's offseason workout program, according to the team.

Frank Clark Apr 21 12:23pm ET

Seattle Seahawks DE Frank Clark remains under consideration for a trade, and if a deal is struck before the start of the draft Thursday, April 25, Seattle would demand at least a first-round pick in return, according to a league source.

Kendell Beckwith Apr 20 9:43pm ET

Tampa Bay Buccaneers LB Kendell Beckwith (ankle) is still visiting with multiple specialists but is unlikely to be cleared to play in 2019, according to general manager Jason Licht.

Byron Jones Apr 20 9:33pm ET

Dallas Cowboys CB Byron Jones (hip) is 'looking good' during his rehab for hip surgery, according to Calvin Watkins of The Athletic.

Benjamin Watson Apr 20 7:53pm ET

Free-agent TE Benjamin Watson (Saints) is considering a return in 2019, according to sources, after previously stating 2018 would be his last year. Watson, whose wife is due to deliver twins next week, could return for his 16th NFL season 'under the right situation.'

Fantasy Spin: Watson isn't much of a fantasy asset at 38 years old, but a potential return to the Rob Gronkowski-less New England Patriots may give him matchup utility.

Jared Goff Apr 20 3:03pm ET

Los Angeles Rams QB Jared Goff said he is not worried about his contract situation and believes he will receive a lucrative contract if he continues to play well. The Rams are expected to exercise the fifth-year option in Goff's contract this offseason.

Fantasy Spin: Goff is coming off a very successful 2019 season with 4,688 yards and 32 touchdowns in the regular season. He should have most of his receiving corps back next season and can be a solid No. 1 fantasy quarterback.

Jon Gruden Apr 20 11:33am ET

Updating a previous report, other teams have been told that the Oakland Raiders will have head coach Jon Gruden, general manager Mike Mayock, assistant director of player personnel Trey Scott, director of football administration Tom Delaney and executive vice president/general counsel Dan Ventrelle available in their draft room next week as points of contact, according to multiple sources.

Jon Gruden Apr 20 11:23am ET

The Oakland Raiders sent their scouts home for the weekend Friday, April 19, and they are not expected to return by draft time because head coach Jon Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock reportedly didn't know who could be trusted, according to multiple sources.

Jalen Ramsey Apr 20 10:43am ET

Jacksonville Jaguars executive vice president Tom Coughlin may have violated NFL offseason rules when he criticized CB Jalen Ramsey and LB Telvin Smith for not attending a voluntary workout earlier this week. 'We're close to 100 percent attendance - and quite frankly, all of our players should be here,' Coughlin said in a comment posted on the team's official website. The league's collective bargaining agreement states that club officials are not permitted to make players feel like they have to attend any specific workout. If the NFL decides to investigate and determines that Coughlin violated any rules, the Jaguars could be fined, forfeit future offseason workout sessions or even lose a draft pick.

Frank Clark Apr 20 1:43am ET

Seattle Seahawks DE Frank Clark could be traded in the lead up to next week's NFL Draft, according to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport, who indicates that several teams are interested if the Seahawks decide to move on from Clark, who was given the franchise tag earlier this offseason.

Dalvin Cook Apr 19 11:03pm ET

Minnesota Vikings RB Dalvin Cook said he hasn't 'scratched the surface' of his potential yet. 'I'm getting back to how I used to feel,' Cook said. 'My confidence is out the roof. I feel great. I've had a great offseason.'

Fantasy Spin: After a knee injury cut his rookie year short, Cook battled a hamstring issue last year. Still, he has flashed his upside when healthy, and he should enter 2019 as the lead back for the Vikings. He's a RB2 with a lot of upside.

Doug Baldwin Apr 19 6:03pm ET

Seattle Seahawks WR Doug Baldwin (hernia, knee, shoulder) is recovering from multiple surgeries, and there is no timetable for his return, according to general manager John Schneider.

Fantasy Spin: Baldwin probably will not be on a practice field until training camp, but owners should monitor his progress over the next few months. He will continue to be the main option in the Seahawks passing game and can be a No. 2 or No. 3 receiver in fantasy leagues.

Quinten Rollins Apr 19 5:13pm ET

Free-agent OT Jake Rodgers (Ravens), DT Marcus Hardison (Chargers), DT Mike Purcell (Chiefs) and CB Quinten Rollins (Cardinals) participated in the Denver Broncos minicamp this week on a tryout basis.

Marquise Brown Apr 19 3:00pm ET

Oklahoma wide receiver Marquise Brown is in the mix to be the first receiver selected in next week's draft, and his draft stock hasn't been hurt by a Lisfranc foot injury that kept him from performing at the combine. D.K. Metcalf, another player viewed as a first-round talent, is no longer a lock to be taken in the first round.

From RotoBaller

Cameron Brate Apr 19 2:03pm ET

Tampa Bay Buccaneers TE Cameron Brate (hip) says he is back running and catching passes without pain after undergoing surgery to repair a torn hip labrum earlier this offseason. Brate said the injury originally occurred in 2017, but he decided to play though the pain in the 2018 season instead of cutting his campaign short to have surgery.

Fantasy Spin: Even though he played in all 16 games, Brate finished with three-year lows in targets (49), receptions (30) and yards (289). Brate did haul in six TD passes, and his 20 scoring receptions over the last three seasons trails only Travis Kelce (22) among tight ends. Fellow T.B. TE O.J. Howard, though, is back after an ankle injury cut short his breakout 2018 season, and that relegates Brate to low-end TE2 status entering fantasy drafts this summer.

Tom Brady Apr 19 1:33pm ET

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady tied Kansas City Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes with nine big-time throws on third-and-long situations in 2018, according to Pro Football Focus.

Fantasy Spin: Not too shabby for age 41, but on the flip side, Brady has finished as a top-12 fantasy quarterback in only one of the last three seasons and should be valued as a high-end QB2 entering drafts this summer.

Jordan Lasley Apr 19 12:20pm ET

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Jordan Lasley spent the offseason training with quarterback Lamar Jackson. Jackson's quarterbacks coach, Josh Harris, had nothing but good things to say about Lasley. The 22-year-old wasn't active for a single game in his rookie season, but with Baltimore's receiver depth chart barren as it stands right now, he'll have plenty of opportunity to carve out a role in 2019. Consider him a deep sleeper heading into the summer.

From RotoBaller