We have approached the final week of the Fantasy Season and you likely fall into one of three categories. The first category, and also the best, is that you have clinched a playoff spot and are pursuing one of the few available first round byes. Hopefully your team is healthy and you may make an add/drop or two, but you are likely all in on your squad and looking toward the playoffs. The second category might be a bit more stressful, but it is the reason we all love fantasy football. This category covers all of the teams who are currently sitting on the playoff bubble. Whether you are sitting on the outside looking in or the inside looking out, you should consider yourself lucky to be playing meaningful football in early December. You’ve probably had some bad luck and injuries, but your squad likely has a serious shot at making some noise if they can just squeak into the playoffs. Lastly it brings me to the third category, and you can probably see where this is going. The third category is all of the teams that are playing for last place. You may have missed the playoffs a week or two ago, but now you are just trying to put some respect on your team and hopefully miss out on the leagues punishment for last place (which may even be more stressful than playing for first place). Regardless of what category you fall into, this week should be one of the most electric and entertaining weeks of the season and a reminder of why we love to play this game.
Key Waiver Pickups
Kirk Cousins – QB, MIN (20.4% Rostered)
If you are QB needy this late in the season, Cousins could turn out to be a great option for you. Cousins has been playing arguably the best football of his career and Jefferson has emerged as an elite NFL WR. With both Jefferson and Thielen emerging as top 15 plays, Cousins should continue to cook.
Latavius Murray – RB, NO (46.3% Rostered)
Murray emerged as the top RB for the Saints on Sunday as he took 19 carries for 124 yards and 2 TDs. It is unclear what this means for Alvin Kamara’s weekly value, but it does make it clear that Murray is well worthy of a roster spot.
Ito Smith – RB, ATL (0.8% Rostered)
Smith may be a stretch, but Brian Hill failed to put anything together while Smith made the most of his carries. He took his 12 carries for 65 yards and a TD, but also added 5 points through the air and caught 4 of his 5 targets. Smith is available in nearly every league and could be a fine play as long as Gurley is sidelined.
Gabriel Davis – WR, BUF (1.1% Rostered)
Davis has proven to be a great #2 WR in Buffalo and could emerge as the long term guy behind Diggs. The rookie once again filled in nicely for John Brown by catching 3 passes for 79 yards and a TD. With Brown on IR, Davis could be a great play down the stretch as he continues to get comfortable in the Bills offense. He has flashed his big play ability all season and has scored 4 TDs.
Robert Tonyan – TE, GB (46.1% Rostered)
Tonyan has rocked back and forth with consistency, but his highs are good enough to be kept on the roster. In a year filled with TE inconsistency, a guy who has scored 7 TDs should be on a roster in every league.
Curtis Samuel – WR, CAR (49% Rostered)
Not only should Samuel be rostered, he is a guy who can have high end flex value for the remainder of the year. With DJ Moore likely out for a few weeks, Samuel’s role will continue to grow. Samuel has done nothing but exceed expectations in 2020 and is a prime candidate to get paid in the offseason.
Fax or Fiction
Jalen Hurts is Worth a Roster Spot
Fiction. I do think at some point Wentz will be benched in favor of Hurts if the Ealges keep losing. I do not think that will in any way have any fantasy implications as the young 2nd round pick will be seeing his first real experience as any NFL starter. There are far too many better options available in many leagues before Hurts will have any fantasy relevance.
Austin Ekeler is back to RB1 Status for the Remainder of Year
Fax. Sunday made it very clear the the Chargers are going to give him the volume he deserves and he was also evident that he returned 100% healthy. Look for Ekeler to have a stranglehold on the Chargers backfield while he remains healthy.
Kamara is a Risky Start
Fiction. The Saints have adjusted their offense a bit with Taysom Hill leading the team, however, Kamara remains a must start RB1. What is eating him up the most is his lack of receptions (just 1 for -2 yards), but that was likely due to dominating the Broncos early and a lack of need to use the burnt out RB. The Saints will need everything from Kamara and should be in some closer games the Falcons, Eagles, Chiefs and Vikings to finish out the fantasy season.
Kirk Cousins vs Jacksonville
Cam Newton @ LAC
Derek Carr @ NYJ
Running Backs – (If they play)
J.K. Dobbins vs Dallas
Jonathan Taylor at Texans
Myles Gaskin vs Cincinnati
Michael Thomas at Atlanta
Jarvis Landry @ Tennessee
Allen Robinson vs Detroit
Big Ben vs WSH
Kyler Murray vs LAR
Deshaun Watson vs IND
Todd Gurley vs NO
Wayne Gallman @ SEA
Carlos Hyde vs NYG
Juju Smith-Schuster vs WSH
Cole Beasley @ SF
Brandin Cooks vs IND
Christian McCaffrey – RB, CAR (Ankle)
McCaffrey missed another game Sunday and it became more evident how the Panthers need their franchise RB as they lost by 1 to the Vikings. The Panthers head into the bye week and McCaffrey likely could return in Week 14, but also could sit for the remainder of the season as the Panthers are close to being mathematically ineligible.
Chris Carson – RB, SEA (Foot)
Carson made his return to the Seahawks offense Monday night after missing 4 games. His usage was limited, but he was able to find the end zone and salvage his performance. He should be used as a high end RB2 for the remainder of the season as his volume should return to normal.
Joe Mixon – RB, CIN (Foot) IR
Mixon will be out for at least one more before being eligible to make his return from IR.
Kenny Golladay – WR, DET (Hip)
Golladay missed another game on Thanksgiving and it is looking possible that the squandering Lions are going to shut him down for the season.
Drew Brees – QB, NO (Ribs, Lung) IR
Brees will be out at least one more week, but likely could miss a few more than that. With the Saints seeming to have no trouble winning with Hill, they will in no way rush back the 41 year old signal caller.
Daniel Jones – QB, NYG (Hamstring)
Jones seemed to be playing some of the best football of his young career when he injured his right hamstring in the win against the Bengals. Jones was 16/27 for 213 yards along with 19 carries just minutes into the 3rd Qtr. There are conflicting reports revolving the injury, as ESPN team report Jordan Ranaan claims it was “serious”, however, Jones and Giants Coach Joe Judge both seemed to be optimistic about his availability against the Seahawks next week. After an MRI revealed that there is no significant damage to his hamstring Jones could be back as early as Sunday, however, he likely will be out.
DJ Moore – WR, CAR (Ankle/Achilles)
DJ Moore injured his right ankle late in the loss Sunday. To add frustration to the injury, it was the second time that Teddy Bridgewater had missed the wide open Moore in the end zone. X-Ray’s revealed no structural damage and it is possible that Moore will return following the bye week.
Josh Jacobs – RB, LV (Ankle)
Jacobs had one of his worst NFL performances on Sunday, but was limited to just 10 touches before injuring his ankle. Early indications pointed towards it being much worse than originally assumed and Jacobs could miss significant time, however, there have been rumors that Jacobs could even play on Sunday. Follow Jacobs closely this week to judge his availability.
Julio Jones – WR, ATL (Hamstring)
Jones missed Sunday’s blowout win for the Falcons and likely will not be rushed back.
D’Andre Swift – RB, DET (Concussion)
Swift missed his second straight game after the short week, but seems to be progressing well. He was questionable for Thursdays game, so he likely will be ready to go after 10 days off before facing the division rival Bears.
Myles Gaskin – RB, MIA (Knee)
Gaskin was designated to return from IR and practiced during the back half of the week, but ultimately was not activated for the game. He will likely play this week, but is a name to monitor, especially as Salvon Ahmed (Shoulder) also could potentially return and steal carries.
David Johnson – RB, HOU (Concussion)
Johnson is eligible to return, but should be monitored. He likely will move to a low end flex start since Duke Johnson has made the most of his carries and could become a more featured back.
Kyler Murray – QB, ARI (Shoulder)
Murray played Sunday, but struggled as he wasn’t involved in a single TD. He clearly is hurting, but it is questionable if this will be a lingering injury or possibly shut him down for the season if they continue to fall from playoff contention.
How’d We Do Last Week?
Cam Newton vs ARI – 3 pts
Derek Carr @ ATL – 0 pts
Tom Brady vs KC – 24 pts
Kareem Hunt @ JAX – 6 pts
Mike Davis @ MIN – 10 pts
D’Andre Swift vs HOU – 0 pts (out)
Tyler Boyd vs NYG – 4 pts
Justin Jefferson vs CAR – 26 pts
DJ Moore @ MIN – 10 pts
Taysom Hill @ DEN – 17 pts
Ryan Tannehill @ IND – 18 pts
Jared Goff vs SF – 2 pts
Chris Carson @ PHI – 0 pts (out)
Miles Sanders vs SEA –
Ronald Jones II vs KC – 16 pts
CeeDee Lamb vs WAS – 7 pts
Marquise Brown @ PIT –
Curtis Samuel @ MIN – 12 pts