Sun Dec 5 5:21pm ET
By TIM REYNOLDS
AP Sports Writer
Miami Dolphins outside linebacker Jaelan Phillips (15) sacks New York Giants quarterback Mike Glennon (2) during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
Miami Dolphins outside linebacker Jaelan Phillips (15) sacks New York Giants quarterback Mike Glennon (2) during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
New York Giants linebacker Elerson Smith goes after Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jaylen Waddle (17) during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
New York Giants quarterback Mike Glennon (2) aims a pass during the second half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
New York Giants head coach Joe Judge fist bumps wide receiver Kenny Golladay (19) during the second half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores gestures during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
Miami Dolphins safety Jason McCourty (30) and wide receiver Jaylen Waddle (17) congratulate wide receiver Mack Hollins (86) after Hollins scored a touchdown during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
New York Giants cornerback James Bradberry (24) tackles Miami Dolphins wide receiver DeVante Parker (11) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
New York Giants outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari attempts to tackle Miami Dolphins wide receiver Albert Wilson (2) as running back Salvon Ahmed (26) pushes back, during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
New York Giants wide receiver Pharoh Cooper (83) evades a tackle by Miami Dolphins cornerback Noah Igbinoghene (9) during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) It was third-and-goal and Tua Tagovailoa was rolling left, waiting for someone to get open. The play looked as if it was falling apart, until he saw Isaiah Ford create a sliver of space for himself near the side of the end zone.
Tagovailoa watched Ford catch the ball and began jumping around in celebration, punching the air. He had made something out of nothing - just as the Miami Dolphins have out of what was once a train wreck of a season.
A team that was once 1-7 and falling apart is now 6-7 and brimming with confidence. Tagovailoa threw a pair of short touchdown passes, and the Dolphins extended their winning streak to five games by topping the New York Giants 20-9 on Sunday.
''I'm glad we won, but I think there's a lot of things that we left out there on the field, a lot of plays that we wish we'd have back,'' Tagovailoa said.
Mack Hollins had the other scoring grab for Miami. Jaylen Waddle had nine catches for 90 yards for the Dolphins, and rookie Jaelan Phillips had two more sacks - giving him five in his past two games.
Tagovailoa completed 30 of 41 passes for 244 yards and the two scores.
''We're just executing better,'' Miami linebacker Jerome Baker said.
Mike Glennon started at quarterback for the Giants in place of Daniel Jones, who was sidelined with a neck injury. Glennon completed 23 of 44 throws for 187 yards, and Saquon Barkley had 55 rushing yards on 11 carries.
Glennon finished the game, and the team said he was diagnosed postgame with a concussion.
''We've got to do a better job of taking advantage of all opportunities,'' Giants coach Joe Judge said. ''We have to understand the margin for error in this league is so small.''
New York never found the end zone against a defense that has yielded only 55 points during the five-game winning streak. Graham Gano had three field goals for the Giants, including a 51-yarder with 4:59 remaining to get New York within 17-9.
The Giants had a chance to force a three-and-out about a minute later, but Tagovailoa found DeVante Parker with a 16-yard pass that required an acrobatic sideline catch to keep the drive alive. And on another third down with 3:14 left, Tagovailoa lofted one perfectly for Mike Gesicki for a 17-yard gain.
New York was out of timeouts, unable to do anything but watch the Dolphins run the clock down to 1:16 before sending Jason Sanders on for a 48-yard field goal, pushing the lead to 11 and sealing the outcome.
''We talk a lot about those late-game situations, how important they are and finishing the game off the right way offensively, defensively and the kicking game,'' Dolphins coach Brian Flores said. ''I thought we did that across the board.''
The Dolphins took the lead late in the first half on a 5-yard pass from Tagovailoa to Hollins, the capper to a 14-play, 89-yard drive. It was quintessential Miami of late, the formula that has worked with Tagovailoa, relying on the short ball to chip, chip, chip away.
He was 11 for 12 on the drive for 77 yards, only one of those throws going for more than 10 yards, six of them going for no more than 6 yards. The only true deep shot in the series came after the Giants jumped offside; Tagovailoa knew he had a free play and let fly with an incompletion that didn't count anyway.
Ford's TD catch capped a seven-play, 61-yard drive with 11:13 left, and that's what Tagovailoa saw reason to celebrate.
''I think Tua does a good job of reading it and he's also a very accurate passer,'' Giants cornerback James Bradberry. ''He has a quick release, too. That's what makes it tough to defend it.''
Giants: WR Kenny Golladay (ribs) left the game in the first half, then returned to the game after halftime. Judge said Jones will be evaluated again Monday, like all players are, before the Giants make a determination on his status for the coming week.
Dolphins: Waddle was shaken up in the fourth quarter, pointing to his left knee after a catch. He limped off the field as fans chanted his name, and as he waved his arm to encourage more volume he started walking more briskly and then began to jog. The Dolphins said he was cramping. ... RB Patrick Laird (knee) was lost in the first quarter, on a day when RB Phillip Lindsay was unavailable because of an ankle issue.
The first penalty of the game came with 1:55 left in the first half, when the Giants' Leonard Williams jumped offside. The second penalty, and first on the Dolphins, happened with 7:18 left in the third quarter when left tackle Liam Eichenberg was guilty of a false start.
Giants: visit the Los Angeles Chargers on Dec. 12.
Dolphins: bye week, then host the New York Jets on Dec. 19.
Houston Texans quarterback Tyrod Taylor (wrist) suffered a hyperextended wrist in the Week 13 loss to the Colts and couldn't continue in the game. Taylor only managed five completions on 19 attempts for 45 yards and one interception before his injury. He also had three rushing attempts for 15 yards. The Colts were all over Taylor, picking him off on the first offensive snap of the game and sacking him twice. Taylor was replaced by rookie Davis Mills. It's unknown if Taylor will be able to play next week with his wrist injury, but if he can't, Mills will be a bottom-of-the barrel QB2 in superflex leagues.
New York Jets running back Tevin Coleman surprisingly put together another decent performance this week. He rushed 11 times for 58 yards and added three receptions for 19 yards through the air in the Week 13 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Coleman remained as the lead back with Michael Carter (ankle) still sidelined. He was the primary back in this one and that will likely remain the same next week. There's not a ton of upside here, but Coleman could be a low-end flex option in deep leagues versus the New Orleans Saints next week. There is a good chance he'll get 10-plus carries as the lead back each week until Carter returns.
Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen (ankle) suffered a sprained ankle, according to head coach Mike Zimmer, in his Week 13 matchup against the Detroit Lions. Thielen will most likely miss at least one week, especially now that the Vikings are falling out of playoff contention. In Thielen's absence, wide receiver Justin Jefferson surged for 11 catches for 182 yards, so if Thielen misses time, Jefferson locks himself in as a top-three wide receiver. Furthermore, thanks to Jefferson, quarterback Kirk Cousins wouldn't receive a major downgrade, as the young superstar can compensate for most of Thielen's production. K.J. Osborn will be a worthy waiver-wire addition this week.
New York Jets wide receiver Elijah Moore has been the focal point of the passing attack for this offense lately. In Week 13, Moore hauled in six of his 12 targets for 77 yards and one touchdown in the loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Those 12 targets was a season-high for Moore who has seen double digit targets in two of his last three games. Moore has become the No. 1 option for this offense with Corey Davis (groin) struggling to stay on the field. Fantasy managers should continue to expect Moore to succeed going forward. He'll be a WR2 option in PPR formats for the Week 14 matchup with the New Orleans Saints.
Las Vegas Raiders running back Kenyan Drake (leg) was carted off of the field after his leg was folded beneath a defender. This injury did not look good, and Drake could be out for an extended period. If Drake is out for a while, Josh Jacobs would receive a sizable upgrade as he would collect a lot more receiving work. However, for his entire tenure with the team, the Raiders have been hesitant to give Jacobs opportunities through the air. Therefore, perhaps once Jalen Richard returns, he could play a role in the offense; still, he's not worth a pickup in standard leagues. As for Drake himself, if he's set to miss time, it's okay to drop him.
New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson put together a lackluster performance during his first game back last week. However, he looked better during the Week 13 matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles. Wilson completed 23-of-38 passing attempts for 226 yards and two touchdowns with one interception in the loss. His two scores came early in the game, but Wilson didn't do much after that. He fell apart in the second half and only surpassed the 200-yard mark because of some garbage time plays. Wilson will remain a desperation deep league option versus the New Orleans Saints next week.
Philadelphia Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni said that quarterback Jalen Hurts (ankle) will remain the team's starter, but that he's not necessarily sure when that will be. After backup Gardner Minshew went 20-for-25 for 242 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions, Hurts' role could have been in jeopardy. However, despite Sirianni's confidence boost, Minshew's strong performance doesn't really endanger Hurts' job security. If Hurts struggles for a prolonged period after missing Week 13 with an ankle injury, the Eagles may be willing to replace him with Minshew after seeing what he's capable of. With all of that said, none of this affects Hurts' fantasy value, it just contributes to his downside a little. Continue starting Hurts once he's healthy.
The Houston Texans defense wasn't a recommended play this week, and they proved everyone right. They gave up 143 rushing yards to Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor and were no match for a Colts team that put up 31 points. Furthermore, the Texans managed only one forced fumble and one sack. They are unlikely to have any fantasy value heading into a Week 14 matchup with the Seattle Seahawks.
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Jalen Guyton put together his best game of the season in a victory versus the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 13. The speedy receiver entered the game with a no more than three receptions in a game this season, but he finished Sunday afternoon with four receptions for 90 yards and a touchdown. The touchdown would be his first of the season and came on a 44-yard pass by Justin Herbert that was wrestled away by Guyton for the score. Despite the nice effort on Sunday, Guyton remains more valuable to the Chargers and can be avoided in most leagues moving. Next up for Guyton will be a matchup versus the New York Giants in Week 14.
Philadelphia Eagles rookie wide receiver DeVonta Smith was targeted four times, only making two catches for 15 yards in a Week 13 win over the New York Jets. Even with Gardner Minshew in at quarterback for the injured Jalen Hurts (ankle), Smith was still not utilized in the way his talent suggests he should be. The Eagles offense ran through Miles Sanders on the ground and Dallas Goedert through the air. They will have their bye week in Week 14, and perhaps will work on ways to get the ball into the former Heisman winner's hands once they return to the field.
Los Angeles Chargers tight end Jared Cook saw four targets in a Week 13 victory against the Cincinnati Bengals. The veteran was able to convert those targets into three receptions for 29 yards. Despite the Chargers passing the ball plenty of times on a weekly basis, Cook hasn't been putting up strong enough numbers to trust in fantasy circles and has been more value to his actual team. Moving forward, Cook will face the New York Giants in Week 14 and shouldn't be trusted as more than in a TE2 in all formats.
San Francisco 49ers running back Trenton Cannon (head/neck) was taken off the field by an ambulance. In the grand scheme of things, Cannon's fantasy impact means nothing relative to his health; this looked like a severe injury and hopefully he's okay. However, in terms of fantasy, this ensures a roster spot for running back Trey Sermon if he returns from his injury in time. Cannon has only had one rushing attempt with the 49ers, so Sermon's roster spot will mostly be for his skills on special teams, but it's something to note nevertheless. Still, by far the most significant aspect of this news is keeping Cannon's safety in mind.
Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jalen Reagor had another rough performance in a Week 13 win against the New York Jets. Reagor was targeted once, making the catch for a seven yard gain and ran the ball once for no gain, fumbling the ball. The Eagles looked like they tried to force the ball to Reagor in Week 12, but that pattern disappeared in this game, as Reagor went back to looking helpless on the NFL field. He cannot be started in any format and shouldn't even be rostered in the majority of fantasy leagues.
Philadelphia Eagles kicker Jake Elliott had another huge game in Week 13, helping the Eagles to a 33-18 win over the New York Jets. Elliott made all four of his field goal attempts as well as all three of his extra point tries. Elliott's field goals came from 31, 32, 43, and 46 yards out. In fantasy football's least projectable position, Elliott has become a boom-or-bust option, consistently finishing as either a top-three or bottom-10 option.
Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen continued his consistent season with another strong performance in a Week 13 victory versus the Cincinnati Bengals. The veteran only picked up 34 yards on the afternoon, but recorded five receptions and scored two touchdowns. He also converted a pass to quarterback Justin Herbert for a two-point conversion. Allen's first touchdown down came on a four-yard fastball thrown by Herbert on fourth down in the first quarter and he followed that up with a seven-yard touchdown near the end of the opening frame. Despite his consistency this season, Allen only had two touchdowns entering the afternoon and it was good to see him targeted near the end zone on Sunday. Moving forward, Allen remains a must-start on a weekly basis and he will look to keep up the impressive results against the New York Giants in Week 14.
Philadelphia Eagles rookie running back Kenneth Gainwell touched the ball 17 times in a Week 13 win over the New York Jets. With Gardner Minshew in at quarterback for an injured Jalen Hurts (ankle), there were more carries to go around for Eagles running backs. Miles Sanders (ankle) ended up with 27 touches before being forced to leave with an injury, and Boston Scott (illness) was active but did not play, making Gainwell the only running back in the game behind Sanders. The rookie ran the ball 12 times for 54 yards and a touchdown and added five catches for 33 yards on five targets. It was easily the most touches of his career so far, and he showed that he can handle a role in an NFL backfield. The Eagles have a bye week in Week 14, but will return to take on Washington in Week 15.
Despite struggling in the second half of the season, Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams came alive versus the Cincinnati Bengals in a Week 13 victory. The big receiver had a big 47-yard grab in the first quarter that would lead to a Chargers touchdown by wide receiver Keenan Allen and he would finish his day targeted seven times with five receptions for 110 yards. It was the first time since Week 5 that Williams has reached the century mark through the air. In his contract year, Williams has been the true definition of a boom or bust option and that makes for a frustrating situation for managers, but when Williams shows up, it can be the difference in a win or loss for managers. Moving forward, Williams should be treated as a WR3 with upside versus the New York Giants in Week 14.
Philadelphia Eagles tight end Dallas Goedert had a huge game in a Week 13 win over the New York Jets, leading the team in all receiving categories. Goedert caught all six of his targets for 105 yards, scoring two touchdowns. His scores came from 36 and 25 yards out, both in the first quarter. The Jets defense seemed to have no interest in covering Goedert, and fill-in quarterback Gardner Minshew made sure to take advantage of that choice. The Eagles will head into their bye week before returning to take on the Washington Football Team in Week 15.
Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Quez Watkins was targeted three times in the Eagles 33-18 win over the New York Jets in Week 13. He caught all three for 60 yards. Watkins gained the second most yards on the team through the air, behind only tight end Dallas Goedert. Watkins has continued to operate in a solid floor role in the Eagles offense but has yet to show any kind of ceiling. He's an end-of-bench option in deeper leagues that you only start as an emergency option.
Sometimes fantasy managers are better off not watching the game and just being happy with the points their players provide. Such was the case for Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins' managers in their Week 13 unfathomable loss to the previously winless Detroit Lions. It was an ugly game that will surely have organizational ramifications for the Vikings, but one in which Cousins threw for 340 yards and two touchdowns. Minnesota continues to be a high-volume passing team and Cousins, despite some head-scratching decisions at times, is having one of the best statistical seasons of his career. The potential loss of Adam Thielen could hurt Cousins' overall value, but he will continue to be a low-end QB1 as long as the Vikings stay committed to the passing game.