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First Look: Week 7 NFL DFS Injury News and Notes

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First Look: Week 7 NFL DFS Injury News and Notes
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Week 6 brought us less injuries and COVID situations, but there are still a few stragglers that will end up providing value in both the Thursday Night Football game between the New York Giants and the Philadelphia Eagles as well as the Main Slate. Let’s discuss these below. 

Thursday Night Football

Miles Sanders – OUT

Boston Scott

Corey Clement

Zach Ertz – OUT 

Dallas Goedert

Richard Rodgers

In week 1 of this season, Miles Sanders was out and Boston Scott out-snapped Corey Clement 38-25 while and out-carried him 9-6. The target share was dead even between the two, as they both saw two targets in that game. Neither player has been relevant in Fantasy with Miles Sanders in the lineup and they weren’t productive either when they got bigger opportunities in week 1, but you shouldn’t ignore them in showdown despite all of this. DK priced Scott a bit more efficiently for his role, but FD didn’t ($6,500) and it will result in one of the more valuable price tags in this game. Clement is minimum priced on FD as well and he’s $3,200 cheaper than Scott on DK. If this RB situation for the Eagles turns out to be more of a hot hand approach between the two, owning a bit more of Clement makes sense given the price disparity. If you wanted to be different, building lineups that use one of these two at Captain while rostering the other at FLEX makes some sense in this specific scenario though keep in mind that you’re giving up some expected value by doing so. That’s the price you pay for uniques. Ultimately, we’ll have to check in on ownership later in the week to see how the industry is approaching this situation. 

As far as Ertz is concerned, he goes into the IR after turning 45 targets into a putrid 24-178-1 receiving line through 6 games this season. Ertz was still acting as the primary tight end in this offense, but given the lack of production, it’s fair to say that Dallas Goedert would’ve likely made a bigger impact. Goedert, who’s 25, will get that opportunity now IF he can be activated from the IR ahead of this game. Travis Fulgham has emerged as the most dependable receiver in this Eagles offense and the expectation is that DeSean Jackson will be ready to play in this game, but Goedert will establish himself as a primary target in this offense regardless. Richard Rodgers could have some appeal as a contrarian play but frankly his main path towards legitimate value would be Goedert being ruled out as well. 

Main Slate

Diontae Johnson – Questionable with a back injury

Chase Claypool ($5,800 DK/$6,400 FD)

James Washington ($4,100 DK/$5,100 FD)

This is what I said last week with Johnson iffy to play in week 6 and he ended up not playing:

Johnson was cleared from concussion protocol for week 5 and he ended up sustaining a back injury early against the Philadelphia Eagles. The injury didn’t look substantial but it ended his day. Enter Chase Claypool, who dominated this game to the tune of a 7-110-3 line and added a rushing touchdown as well. Claypool played nearly 70% of the snaps and generated a team high 11 targets. In the offseason, I thought there was a legitimate possibility that the Pittsburgh Steelers would let Juju Smith-Schuster walk in free agency, which would give Claypool a straightforward opportunity at becoming the number one receiver in this offense. There’s a chance that I was wrong – Claypool could very well be ready to be atop the Steelers’ wide receiver depth chart. The only thing that would hold him back is lack of experience/familiarity at this level. From a physical standpoint, there’s nothing that holds him back from being a huge red zone threat. Claypool’s DFS stock will likely be on the rise regardless, but a more realistic path for significant volume would be Diontae Johnson being ruled out. Even James Washington could have some sneaky appeal as a deep threat though keep in mind that Ben Roethlisberger has looked quite bad this year when throwing deep. If Johnson is out, there’s a chance that Claypool ends up being one of the highest owned players as long as his price is reasonable. 

This is what happened in week 6:

Chase Claypool (4 targets; 4-74-1 receiving line, 2-7-1 rushing line)

James Washington (7 targets; 4-78-1 receiving line)

Juju Smith-Schuster (4 targets; 2-6-0 receiving line)

James Washington was the most targeted Steeler in a blowout this past Sunday while Claypool continued to be the most productive receiver and was once again active in the red zone area as the Steelers designed jet sweeps for him. Washington’s price tags remain down around the industry and while Claypool’s are on the rise, they’re still too cheap IF Diontae Johnson remains out.

Raheem Mostert – Placed on IR With A High Ankle Sprain

Jerick McKinnon ($5,800 DK/$5,500 FD)

JaMycal Hasty ($4,200 DK/$4,600 FD) 

The 49ers and Raheem Mostert can’t catch a break this season, as he lands on the IR for the second time this season, this time with a high ankle sprain. Tevin Coleman is also on the IR and Jeff Wilson Jr. was out last week due to a calf injury. If Wilson Jr. is unable to play this week as well, the 49ers will lean on McKinnon as the lead running back and Hasty playing some backup snaps. McKinnon has been the lead back for the 49ers in two different occasions this season, with both Mostert and Coleman inactive. McKinnon was able to turn in 14-54-1 and 14-38-1 rushing lines in those games and saw a combined 12 targets (!). I’ts unlikely that he’ll be targeted that much with both George Kittle and Deebo Samuel healthy, but 3-5 targets along with a lead rushing role still leaves plenty of value on the bone. The matchup against the New England Patriots is a concern but the opportunity should overwhelm the matchup concerns. 

Jonnu Smith – Questionable With An Ankle Injury

Anthony Firkser ($3,000 DK/$5,000 FD)

Jonnu Smith is dealing with a minor ankle injury that is unlikely to keep him out for longer than a couple of games. However, in the event that he misses any time, Anthony Firkser would enter the conversation as a strong DFS play. Firkser typically doesn’t have a significant role as a receiving tight end because Jonnu Smith is simply better and more athletic, but if the latter isn’t healthy, he’ll immediately enter into a bigger role as a receiver as we saw this past Sunday. Firkser saw a team high 9 targets against the Houston Texans on Sunday and turned that into a 8-113-1 receiving line. A matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers should keep the Titans throwing throughout this game, which is great news for Firkser’s value. Ultimately, Firkser doesn’t need to do much to beat his near minimum price tags around the industry. My guess is that he ends up being one of the higher owned players on the board regardless of position IF Smith is ruled out this week. 

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