Fri Nov 26 6:43pm ET
By DENNIS WASZAK Jr.
AP Pro Football Writer
New York Jets' Quincy Williams during the first half of an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, on Oct. 31, 2021, in East Rutherford, N.J. Quincy is making a name for himself as a raw, but fierce tackler in his third NFL season. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File)
New York Jets' Quincy Williams, left, tries to take down Miami Dolphins' Myles Gaskin during the second half of an NFL football game, on Nov. 21, 2021, in East Rutherford, N.J. Quincy is making a name for himself as a raw, but fierce tackler in his third NFL season. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun, File)
New York Jets' Quincy Williams, left, and Quinnen Williams celebrate after an NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans, on Oct. 3, 2021, in East Rutherford, N.J. Quincy is making a name for himself as a raw, but fierce tackler in his third NFL season. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) Quincy Williams has been tackling his way out of his younger brother's massive shadow for years.
The New York Jets linebacker, who's almost 16 months older than teammate and sibling Quinnen, was the ''other'' Williams brother through high school and college. And then in the biggest moments of their football careers.
Quinnen was the first-round pick of the Jets in 2019 out of Alabama, the third overall selection. He was a 6-foot-3, 300-pound national champion considered one of the premier defensive lineman in the country.
Meanwhile, Quincy waited until the next night when he went in the third round to Jacksonville. He was a 5-11, 230-pound lesser-known linebacker at Murray State.
''When I first got drafted, the thing was, who is Quincy Williams?'' he recalled Friday. ''And everybody was like, 'Oh, that's Quinnen who played for Alabama's brother. So most people would take it as like, `I'm a person, I'm a person,' and just be mad about it. But then I just put that as a chip on my shoulder like I had to make a name for myself.
''That's the realest thing, so I use it as like ammunition, for real.''
It certainly shows in his play.
While Quinnen is a space-eating run stuffer who shoves offensive linemen aside on his way to taking down quarterbacks, Quincy is a heat-seeking missile who slams into anyone trying to get past him.
''My No. 1 thing is just running through people,'' said a smiling Quincy Williams, who ranks second to C.J. Mosley with a career-high 51 tackles. ''So that's the main thing. And at first, it's like the crowd `ooohs.' I love that. It feeds me. Then all of a sudden, it's my teammates that get hyped about it. ...
''So it's basically like me setting the tone for my teammates and my teammates rallying behind it. And I love that part of it.''
He started in place of Jarrad Davis last week and had 15 total tackles in New York's 24-17 loss to Miami, the most for a Jets player since David Harris had 17 in 2009.
''One of his superpowers is speed,'' coach Robert Saleh said. ''He's one of the faster linebackers in football, if you just look at his GPS numbers. He has the luxury of taking a step before triggering because whatever he lost at the snap, he can regain because he's so fast and long.''
Jets defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich remembers scouting Williams at Murray State leading up to the draft and loving what he saw.
''I fought hard to try to get him in Atlanta and for us to draft him,'' Ulbrich recalled. ''Obviously, it didn't work out. Spent a day with him, worked him out, the whole deal. He's got that stuff you can't coach. He's got obviously the athleticism, the explosiveness, the speed and all of that. He's also got instincts that are really rare.
''He can't always articulate what he sees, but he sees it and he reacts. At the same time, he's a hitter.''
Williams spent his first two NFL seasons mostly as a backup linebacker who started eight games as a rookie, and as a core special teams player. He also dealt with a few injuries, and was waived by the Jaguars when the team made its final cuts.
The Jets swooped in and claimed him the next day, reuniting him with his brother. Williams worked his way into the starting lineup at inside linebacker opposite Mosley for five straight games after the season opener as Davis recovered from an ankle injury suffered during New York's preseason game at Green Bay.
''He's got some stuff,'' Ulbrich said. ''He's a guy that is so far from what he will become. Not even close to being a finished product. He's got a long way to go and we're excited about him.''
Davis returned to his starting role last month, with Williams going back to playing mostly special teams. But Davis still isn't 100% healthy, so the Jets put Williams back in the starting lineup last Sunday - and he was all over the field.
''My first two years, I was playing on raw talent: I'm faster than you,'' he said. ''My eyes would be in the wrong spot, but I'd still make the play and maybe a good play, but if I was technical, I could've made it a lot faster if I had been looking at the right keys and stuff.''
That's what has been improving drastically, through picking the brains of Mosley and Davis and devouring the playbook. Williams knows exactly where plays are heading now, and takes even quicker first steps.
''The play just looks so much easier, and most people are like, it's natural to him, it was a natural thing,'' Williams said. ''And it really does just because the preparation I did, and that's what they harp on here at the Jets.''
Williams called stepping back and watching how Davis prepares ''a wonderful experience'' and insisted he didn't feel he was ''downgraded'' because he learned how to better prepare from a veteran. Williams incorporated some of the things he picked up from Davis and added them to his approach.
''You have like your way, then you have the professional way,'' Williams said. ''So I want to be a pro in this league a long time.''
And with each fierce tackle, force everyone to know his name.
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Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jalen Reagor is not a starting fantasy option in any format in a Week 12 game against the New York Giants. Reagor has put up a top-50 fantasy wide receiver performance only twice this season, and has scored under five fantasy points eight times. It's been a disaster of a season for the former first-round pick, and he cannot be relied on in any format at this point. There are few, if any, fantasy leagues where he should even be on a roster.
Philadelphia Eagles tight end Dallas Goedert will look for another TE1 week in a Week 12 game against the New York Giants. Goedert has seen an enormous 30% target share over the past four games, but with the Eagles only throwing on one of every three offensive plays, that's translated to just 7.8 fantasy points per game. Still, while the range of outcomes for Goedert is larger than others ranked around him, his upside is also much higher. He's a fairly safe mid-range TE1 with top-tier upside every week.
Philadelphia Eagles kicker Jake Elliott will look for another strong performance in a Week 12 contest against the New York Giants. Elliott has been extremely consistent this season, making 18 of his 20 field goal attempts and all 29 of his extra point tries. Despite the consistency, Elliott has finished outside of the top-20 fantasy kickers six times due to low volume and the lack of long-yardage opportunities. He's a decent option against the Giants, since the Eagles should be able to move the ball fairly well.
The Philadelphia Eagles defense has had an up-and-down fantasy season, but they've been a top-six fantasy option in three of the past four weeks. A Week 12 matchup against Daniel Jones and the New York Giants shouldn't be too tough of a test for the unit that came up with a fumble recovery, two interceptions, and a defensive touchdown in Week 11. While there's always risk with the Eagles defense, there's some nice upside to go with it in Week 12.
Philadelphia Eagles rookie running back Kenneth Gainwell is unlikely to have a big role in a Week 12 game against the New York Giants. Gainwell was a healthy scratch in Week 11, and even with Jordan Howard (knee) already ruled out, the rookie likely won't be much more than a change of pace option behind Miles Sanders and Boston Scott. Gainwell is nothing more than a desperation play in the deepest fantasy formats this week.
Philadelphia Eagles rookie wide receiver DeVonta Smith is a risky but potentially strong option in a Week 12 matchup against the New York Giants. Smith has put up a 14-258-3 line over the past four weeks, good for the overall WR16 performance in that time. All that despite seeing just 21 targets, as the Eagles have only attempted a pass play on one-third of their offensive plays. Smith has a low floor because of his limited opportunities, but he's the lead receiver on a team that has shown the ability to score points. He'll come in as a WR2 but with a wider range of outcomes than others ranked around him.
Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Quez Watkins is almost guaranteed to have a better game in Week 12 than he did in Week 11. Week 11 was the first time Watkins was held without a catch this season, putting up zero fantasy points and only being targeted once. He hasn't shown much upside this season, but had been a solid floor play in PPR formats in previous weeks. He'll continue to operate in a much more real-life-relevant role as the WR2 on the Eagles offense.
Philadelphia Eagles running back Miles Sanders could be a solid fantasy option in a Week 12 matchup against the New York Giants. Sanders will remain the starter and should be the lead back in the backfield, but quarterback Jalen Hurts will likely continue to operate as the team's first rushing option. Still, Eagles running backs have averaged over 30 carries a game since Week 8, and Sanders picked up 5.9 yards per run on 16 touches in Week 11. With Jordan Howard (knee) not expected to play, it'll be a lot of Sanders with some Boston Scott mixed in, making Sanders a solid RB2 with upside this week.
Philadelphia Eagles running back Boston Scott could find his way into some fantasy value in a Week 12 matchup against the New York Giants. With Jordan Howard (knee) not expected to play, the Eagles backfield will be made up of Miles Sanders and Scott. Sanders will be the starter, and quarterback Jalen Hurts could end up with more rushing attempts than either running back, but with Eagles running backs averaging almost 31 carries per game since Week 8, there should be some touches for Scott against a Giants defense that hasn't been great against running backs. Scott is looking like a decent floor RB3/FLEX play, with some possible upside.
Tennessee Titans wide receiver Chester Rogers will see an increased opportunity with star A.J. Brown (chest) ruled out for Sunday's game against the New England Patriots. The 27-year-old recorded four receptions on six targets for 41 yards in the Week 11 loss to the Houston Texans. Rogers will have an increased role in Week 12; unfortunately, it's against a tough Patriots defense which ranks number one against the pass. New England ranks 22nd in DVOA against WR2s; Rogers cold see some open looks but is not on the fantasy radar in Week 12.
Tennessee Titans wide receiver Nick Westbrook-Ikhine becomes the team's de facto number one wide receiver after star WR A.J. Brown (chest) was ruled out for Sunday's game against the New England Patriots. He led the Titans with seven receptions on eight targets for 107 yards in the Week 11 loss to the Texans. The Patriots rank number one in DVOA against the pass and second against the opposing team's top targets. Westbrook-Ikhine could see an uptick in targets, but the Titans' offense could have trouble moving the ball on Sunday against a surging Patriots defense. Fantasy managers in deep-league formats can use the 24-year-old as a streaming option, but even with the increased role, Westbrook-Ikhine is a boom-or-bust flex option in Week 12.
Tennessee Titans running back Dontrell Hilliard led the team's backfield with 63% of snaps and was targeted 10 times in the Week 11 loss to the Houston Texans. He was signed to the Titans 53-man roster earlier in the week. Tennessee waived veteran running back Adrian Peterson in a corresponding move. Hilliard had a massive role last Sunday, rushing for 35 yards on seven carries and catching eight passes for 47 yards. The Titans will be without star wide receiver A.J. Brown (chest); Hilliard could lead Tennessee in targets in Week 12 against the Patriots. The Titans backfield will be tough to trust, but the 26-year-old should have a vital role in the passing game and is a solid option in deep-league formats this Sunday.
Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill will be without one of his top weapons as A.J. Brown (chest) was ruled against the New England Patriots for Sunday's game. The 33-year-old struggled mightily last Sunday against the Texans, throwing one touchdown and four interceptions in the Week 11 loss. He faces a surging Patriots defense in Week 12 that just shut out QB Matt Ryan and the Falcons offense. Tannehill has been mediocre in 2021 and has failed to throw multiple touchdowns in nine of 11 games this year. The veteran will be without his top pass-catchers and mainly an option in Superflex leagues in Week 12.
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (pectoral/shoulder) got in a full practice on Friday and is without an injury designation heading into a Week 12 matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals. Cincinnati has been tough on opposing quarterbacks in 2021, allowing the ninth-fewest fantasy points per game. Roethlisberger has been pedestrian for much of the season but he's been trending up of late, having thrown five touchdowns over his past two games. The veteran signal-caller threw for 318 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions back when these two teams met in Week 3. Treat him as a low-end QB2 for Week 12.
Cleveland Browns running back Kareem Hunt (calf) is expected to be activated and on the field when his team takes on the Baltimore Ravens in Week 12. Hunt has been sidelined since injuring his calf during a Week 6 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. The veteran running back will take on a Baltimore defense that is allowing the 17th-fewest fantasy points per game to opposing running backs. If Hunt is active, look for him to slot in for the majority of the work in the passing game plus his usual 12-14 carries on the ground. That will be enough to treat him as a low-end RB2 in fantasy for Week 12.
New York Giants wide receiver Darius Slayton should have an expanded role on Sunday as the team will be without WR Sterling Shepard (quad) and most likely Kadarius Toney (quad) for Sunday's game against the Philadelphia Eagles. The 24-year-old has caught 16 passes for 227 yards and touchdown over seven games in 2021. Slayton is the Giants' top downfield threat and faces an Eagles that has been tough against WR2s and ranks sixth versus the opposing team's secondary targets. Even with the expanded role, the Giants offense has struggled most of the season, and Slayton is a boom-or-bust flex option in Week 12.
Cleveland Browns tight end Austin Hooper has been trending up in recent weeks, having caught eight balls for 78 yards and a touchdown over his past two games. Hooper will take on the Baltimore Ravens on the road in a Week 12 divisional matchup. Baltimore has been generous to opposing tight ends this season as they are allowing the fifth-most fantasy points per game. Hooper still carries some risk as a fantasy option but he has become a bit more reliable of late. Treat him as a mid-range TE2 in Week 12.
Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry (knee) got in a limited practice session on Friday and will head into his team's Week 12 matchup against the Baltimore Ravens without an injury designation. Landry has been playing through a knee injury for much of the season, which has limited his mobility on the field. The Ravens represent a neutral matchup for Landry as they are allowing the 14th-most fantasy points per game to wide receivers in 2021. Landry and the Cleveland passing game has been struggling over the past few contests, which makes the veteran wideout a risky option in fantasy in Week 12. Treat him as a low-end WR3 this weekend.
Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield (groin, shoulder, foot) got in full practices on Thursday and Friday and is listed without an injury designation as he gears up to take on the Baltimore Ravens on the road in Week 12. Mayfield is playing through an assortment of injuries that have affected him on the field, but he continues to suit up and play through a variety of ailments. Baltimore sets up as a plus matchup for Mayfield in Week 12 as they are allowing the ninth-most fantasy points per game to the quarterback position in 2021. That being said, Mayfield has not played well over the past month and will be tough to trust against Baltimore. Treat him as a low-end QB2 for Week 12.
New York Giants wide receiver Kenny Golladay has had a forgettable season in 2021. He's caught 20 passes for 322 yards and has yet to find the end zone. The 28-year-old is averaging 4.0 YAC per reception and 15% of the team's target share, ranked 61st among all wideouts this season. Golladay will try to turn things around against a Philadelphia Eagles defense that ranks 26th in DVOA against wide receivers on the year. The Giants will be without wide receivers Sterling Shepard (quad) and most likely Kadarius Toney (quad) for Sunday's game. Golladay should see an uptick in targets while both receivers are sidelined. The former Detroit Lion hasn't produced in fantasy this year and can't be trusted as anything more than a boom-or-bust flex option in Week 12.