Leading up to gameday each week Aaron Larson (@aalarson) examines the hottest NFL rumors and offers insights for potential fantasy football implications they might have heading into the weekend. So, grab your beverage or snack of choice and get ready for the weekend with some good old-fashioned fantasy football speculation.
Rumor: Leonard Fournette is finally back for the Jaguars and carries no injury designation headed into the week ten matchup with the Colts.
Fantasy Fallout: Fournette has been a massive disappointment for fantasy owners that spent a high draft pick on the talented young running back, but he appears to finally be back this week. If he’s able to produce the top-tier fantasy performances that were expected he could pay off for owners that held onto him, but the presence of Carlos Hyde makes it a murky situation until we see how it actually shakes out.
Rumor: Dez Bryant signed with the Saints, then saw his season end immediately with a torn Achilles.
Fantasy Fallout: It’s been a wild week for Bryant, as he signed with the Super Bowl contender Saints, was unsure of his status for Sunday, then suffered what appears to be a season-ending injury in just his second practice. The biggest takeaway from a fantasy perspective is that the Saints will now have to lean on Tre’Quan Smith as their number two receiver after Cameron Meredith was placed on injured reserve earlier in the week,
Rumor: Chris Carson is a game-time decision for the Seahawks when they take on the Rams this week.
Fantasy Fallout: The Seahawks have been committed to running the ball this season, so if Carson is unable to go Sunday his backup Mike Davis becomes a startable fantasy asset. It’s never fun having a game-time decision in the late start Sunday games, so you need to have a backup plan if you’re a Carson or Davis owner. Even Rashaad Penny could play a role in the offense this week. Whoever starts will be worth a shot in fantasy lineups, but may see tough sledding against the Rams tough interior defensive line.
Fantasy Fallout: Derek Anderson is concussed. Josh Allen is listed as questionable as he works his way back from an elbow injury, Matt Barkley is still acclimating to the team. Nathan Peterman is a turnover machine. Unless you are in a two-quarterback league and extremely desperate, avoid the Bills quarterback situation at all costs.
Rumor: After missing practice early in the week, Sammy Watkins was limited in Friday’s practice and is listed as questionable for Sunday’s matchup with the Cardinals.
Fantasy Fallout: Watkins is having a solid season in the Chiefs high powered offense. Still, it’s tough to trust the injury-prone wideout. It’s probably best to avoid Watkins this week if you have other options.
Rumor: Joe Flacco may not be able to suit up in week 11 for the Ravens due to a hip injury.
Fantasy Fallout: Flacco appears to have suffered the injury in the week nine loss to the Steelers, even though he was able to finish out the game. If he sits in week 11 rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson becomes the starter and would be a very intriguing fantasy start in the matchup with Cincinnati. Any fantasy owner with a questionable quarterback play next week should add Jackson in the hopes that the athletic rookie sees his first start.
Rumor: Le’Veon Bell might finally show up next week for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Fantasy Fallout: It’s been a long waiting game for any fantasy owners that are still hanging on to Bell, but it might finally pay off. James Conner has been beyond capable filling in for Bell this season, but he’s currently in the concussion protocol after Thursday’s game. If nothing else, Bell’s return will completely muddy the waters when it comes to Pittsburgh’s backfield.