San Francisco 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa (97) reacts to a play against the Detroit Lions in the second half of an NFL football game in Detroit, Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo throws against the Detroit Lions in the second half of an NFL football game in Detroit, Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts (1) runs put of the pocket against the Atlanta Falcons during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
Philadelphia Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni speaks to an offical during the first half of an NFL football game between the Atlanta Falcons and the Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday, Sept. 12, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
Jalen Hurts won over the city of Philadelphia with one outstanding performance.
Now he gets to play in front of a packed stadium at home for the first time knowing how well he played last week won't matter. As he says often, ''Rent is due every day.''
''A game with electric fans, passionate fans, I'm looking forward to it,'' Hurts said. ''Anywhere you go, you want to play at a high level.''
Hurts completed 77.1% of his passes for 264 yards and three touchdowns last week in a 32-6 win at Atlanta. He leads the Eagles (1-0) against the San Francisco 49ers (1-0) on Sunday, looking to help the team start 2-0 for the first time since 2017, when it went on to win the Super Bowl.
Eagles coach Nick Sirianni was impressive in his NFL coaching debut. The 49ers present a tougher challenge. They'll know more about Sirianni's scheme than the Falcons did because the Eagles didn't show much in the preseason.
''Practices were crisp last week, and we stepped on the field and were ready to play that game,'' Sirianni said. ''If we don't have good practices this week, we're not going to be ready. It's being in that mindset, that dog mentality to put yourself in position to go out and win the game on Sunday.''
The Niners are coming off a 41-33 win at Detroit in which they had a 28-point lead in the third quarter. They were missing quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo in a 25-20 home loss to Philadelphia last October. George Kittle had a career-best 15 catches for 183 yards in that game.
The 49ers have rotated backs throughout coach Kyle Shanahan's tenure with a different player leading the team in rushing each year. With Raheem Mostert out with a season-ending knee injury, that streak will increase to five straight years. Sixth-round rookie Elijah Mitchell stepped in for Mostert last week and became the first rookie not drafted in the first three rounds since Ronnie Coleman in 1974 to rush for at least 100 yards in a season opener with 104 yards on 19 carries. Third-rounder Trey Sermon should be active this week and Jamycal Hasty is also an option.
''They're a good group,'' Garoppolo said. ''They really are. They complement each other really well. It's a little bit of different tastes with each one of them. They each have their own style of doing it, but it's all effective. And I think with the O-line we've got, tight ends, fullbacks, even receivers blocking it. It makes for a good group.''
CONTROLLING THE LINE
The Eagles dominated the line of scrimmage against the Falcons as their offensive line was exceptional despite seven penalties. Left tackle Jordan Mailata had a crunching, highlight-reel block on a TD pass. Center Jason Kelce shoved aside two defenders on the same run play several yards downfield. Nick Bosa, Fred Warner and the rest of San Francisco's defense won't be so easy to push around. On the defensive side, tackle Javon Hargrave had two sacks and the entire unit put pressure on Matt Ryan.
The Niners once again opted to stay on the East Coast between games to cut down on the cross-country travel. They practiced all week at The Greenbrier resort in West Virginia, where they spent a week last September between games. San Francisco also stayed on the road twice in 2019 and has won the second game on all three of those trips, averaging 41.7 points in those games. The Niners are glad to be back at a facility they've spent time at before.
''Any time you know what you're getting into, I think it always helps,'' Shanahan said. ''The unknown to me when you get off your routine is what messes guys up a little bit, but that's why we like coming here. They do it awesome, but we also know exactly what we're getting into.''
Brandon Aiyuk wasn't targeted once in 27 snaps in the opener despite coming off a promising rookie year when he led the Niners with 60 catches for 748 yards. Aiyuk was slowed by a hamstring injury in training camp and fell behind Trent Sherfield, who had two catches for 23 yards in the opener.
''Aiyuk's been a little inconsistent because he's been in and out with his injury,'' Shanahan said. ''That's what we felt was the best chance for us last week. Aiyuk's still got a chance to get that spot up and not rotate as much.''
WELCOME TO THE NFL
Eagles rookie receiver DeVonta Smith caught a TD pass and had a team-high 71 yards receiving on six catches in the opener. Fellow rookie back Kenneth Gainwell also scored a TD and added 43 yards from scrimmage.
New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson (knee) was forced to exit early during the Week 7 matchup with the New England Patriots. The rookie quarterback was originally expected to miss some time, but the organization didn't have a timetable until they could do an MRI. Now, it has been announced that Wilson is going to miss two-to-four weeks of action. The Jets offense was already struggling heavily, but things are likely only to get worse now. It's assumed that backup quarterback Mike White will take over the starting duties until Wilson returns. That means, basically all Jets players are going to be avoidable in fantasy formats without Wilson available.
Cincinnati Bengals running back Samaje Perine rushed for 52 yards on 11 carries and a touchdown in Sunday's 41-17 win over the Baltimore Ravens. The 26-year-old had one less carry than starter Joe Mixon (12) and churned out his best performance of the season. In the fourth quarter, he busted out a 46-yard touchdown run to give the Bengals a 41-17 lead. Perine was activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list earlier in the week and is expected to serve as Mixon's backup over the rookie Chris Evans. The veteran is a boom-or-bust flex against the New York Jets in Week 8.
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins caught 7-of-15 targets for 62 yards in Sunday's 41-17 win over the Baltimore Ravens. He led the team in targets (15) but was only able to haul in seven of them on Sunday. Bengals QB Joe Burrow looks Higgins way in most games, but it hasn't generated much fantasy success. The 22-year-old has a catch rate of 41.9% on 43 targets in 2021. Higgins hasn't found the end zone since Week 2 and has only eclipsed 50 yards receiving just three times this season. The Clemson product is a boom-or-bust WR3 against the New York Jets in Week 8.
New York Jets running back Ty Johnson put together arguably his best game of the season against the New England Patriots in Week 7. He rushed five times for six yards, but also hauled in six of his seven targets for 65 yards in the loss. It was an active day for the Jets running backs in this game. Both Johnson and Michael Carter were the two leading receivers for New York on Sunday. However, neither player carries much fantasy value through the rest of the season. Carter has a bit more upside because he gets a significant amount of carries. Johnson can remain on the waiver wire for their battle with the Cincinnati Bengals next week.
New York Jets wide receiver Corey Davis has been starting to heat up with his new team. Sadly, most of his momentum is gone with rookie quarterback Zach Wilson (knee) expected to miss some time. In Week 7, Davis hauled in four of his six targets for 47 yards and one touchdown in the blowout loss to the New England Patriots. Fantasy managers can usually count on Davis as a solid WR3, but those days might be numbered. Backup quarterback Mike White is likely to take over, which means Davis could see his value take a significant hit.
Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon rushed for 59 yards on 12 attempts and a touchdown in Sunday's 41-17 win over the Baltimore Ravens. He salvaged his fantasy day by busting out a 21-yard rushing touchdown in the fourth quarter. The 25-year-old has rushed for 539 yards and four touchdowns while catching 13 passes for 90 yards and over seven games in 2021. Mixon continues to lead the Bengals backfield and is a solid fantasy option against the New York Jets in Week 8.
Cincinnati Bengals tight end C.J. Uzomah caught all three targets for 92 yards and two touchdowns in Sunday's 41-17 win over the Baltimore Ravens. The 28-year-old exploded for two scores, including a 52-yard touchdown reception. He has now hit pay dirt in three of his last four games. The Bengals' tight end has reeled in 17 catches for 256 yards and five touchdowns across seven games in 2021. Uzomah is a boom-or-bust low-end TE1 against the New York Jets in Week 8.
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase caught eight passes on 10 targets for 201 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 41-17 rout of the Ravens. He led the team in catches and receiving yards in Week 7. Bengals QB Joe Burrow and Chase showed great chemistry on Sunday, connecting for an 82-yard touchdown in the third quarter. The 21-year-old has had an impressive rookie campaign, hauling in 35 receptions, 754 yards, and six touchdowns over seven games. Chase is a borderline WR1 against the New York Jets in Week 8.
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow completed 23-of-38 pass attempts for 416 yards, three touchdowns, and an interception in Sunday's 41-17 win over the Baltimore Ravens. He connected with tight end C.J. Uzomah for two touchdowns and fired an 82-yard score to wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase. In his sophomore campaign, the 24-year-old has been excellent, throwing for 1.956 yards and a 17:8 TD: INT ratio over seven games in 2021. Burrow is a borderline QB1 against the New York Jets in Week 8.
The Philadelphia Eagles defense struggled again in a Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. In a 33-22 loss, the Eagles defensive unit allowed Derek Carr to throw for 323 yards and let multiple Raiders runners combine for over 100 yards on the ground. They did not record a sack or force a fumble, but they did end up with one interception. All of that made for a fantasy score of -2.0 in standard scoring, the fourth time this season where they've scored one point or less. This is not a defense worth starting in fantasy, regardless of their opponent. They can be left alone on the waiver wire.
Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Quez Watkins made two catches in a Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. Watkins saw four targets, catching half of them for 37 yards. Watkins is playing an important role on the Eagles offense, but this is not a passing game that can support multiple fantasy-relevant wide receivers. With tight end Dallas Goedert and rookie wide receiver DeVonta Smith ahead of Watkins on the passing tree, Watkins is not much more than a hold-and-hope asset in most fantasy formats.
Philadelphia Eagles running back Miles Sanders (ankle) is undergoing X-rays on his injured ankle, but head coach Nick Sirianni doesn't think Sanders suffered a broken ankle in the Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday. Sanders was carted off the field and was quickly ruled out with his ankle injury. While he may have avoided a broken ankle, it doesn't mean that he won't be forced to miss time moving forward. The 24-year-old has been a huge disappointment so far this year and had six carries for 30 yards before his injury, adding one catch for minus-three yards. Quarterback Jalen Hurts led the team with 13 carries for 61 yards, but Boston Scott had seven carries (two more than rookie Kenneth Gainwell) for 24 yards and a rushing score after Sanders left the contest. Gainwell was second on the team with eight targets, catching four of them for 41 yards and a touchdown. If Sanders misses time, Scott and Gainwell figure to share the backfield, with Scott being the early down back and Gainwell playing in passing situations.
Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Jalen Reagor finally did something useful in a Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. Reagor was targeted twice, catching both for 25 yards and a touchdown. His touchdown came on a 17-yard catch in the fourth quarter to bring the Eagles within two scores. Last year's first round pick has two touchdowns on the year and hasn't totaled more than 25 yards since Week 3. He's been jumped on the receiver hierarchy by Quez Watkins and does not need to be rostered in most formats.
Philadelphia Eagles kicker Jake Elliott attempted and made two extra points in a Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. Elliott did not get a chance to attempt a field goal, leaving him with just two fantasy points in most scoring formats. Elliott is a decent enough NFL kicker, but he's kicking at a very low volume in this offense and doesn't have the big leg upside to make him worth starting in any formats. He can be left alone on the waiver wire.
Philadelphia Eagles rookie running back Kenneth Gainwell scored a touchdown in a Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. With starter Miles Sanders (ankle) forced to leave the game early, Gainwell and Boston Scott took over in the Eagles backfield. Both of them worked behind quarterback Jalen Hurts, however, who once again led the Eagles in rushing yards and attempts. Gainwell ran the ball five times for 20 yards and added four catches for 41 yards and a touchdown. He saw eight targets and scored on a 13 yard catch in the first quarter. If Sanders is forced to miss time, Gainwell should get the first crack at leading the Eagles running back room with Scott working behind him. Gainwell is likely to be one of the top waiver wire adds heading into Week 8.
Philadelphia Eagles tight end Dallas Goedert led the Eagles in receiving yards in a Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. After the Eagles traded Zach Ertz to the Arizona Cardinals, Goedert worked in an alpha-TE1 role in this one. He was the only Eagles tight end to see a target. He was thrown to five times, catching three for 70 yards. It was a decent game for Goedert, but more importantly it was a sign of things to come. Without Ertz around, Goedert should be an easy TE1 every week.
Philadelphia Eagles rookie wide receiver DeVonta Smith caught five passes in a Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. Smith led the Eagles in targets, seeing nine balls thrown his way. He came down with five, gaining 61 yards. Smith continues to see WR1 usage but just hasn't done much with his plentiful targets of late. He gained 122 yards in Week 4 but has gained just 169 total since then. He may be a decent buy-low target in redraft leagues right now, there should be big weeks ahead for the rookie.
The Las Vegas Raiders ruled running back Josh Jacobs (chest) out of the Week 7 game against the Philadelphia Eagles after he was injured during the game, but early indications are that he avoided a major injury, according to a source. The Raiders are on bye next week as well, so Jacobs will have extra time to recover and may not have to miss a game. The 23-year-old had six carries for 29 yards and managed to find the end zone before leaving the game, so at least it wasn't all bad for his fantasy managers on Sunday. He also caught all three of his targets for 39 yards. Jacobs has scored in three straight games after a rough start to the season, and it sounds like he won't have to miss much time, if any. With Peyton Barber a healthy scratch, Kenyan Drake led the team with 14 carries for 69 yards and a touchdown with Jacobs leaving the game against Philly.
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts had another solid fantasy performance in a Week 7 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. Hurts attempted 34 passes, completing 18 of them for 236 yards and two touchdowns. On the ground, he led the team in rushes and yards, running 13 times for 61 yards. It was another up-and-down performance on the field for Hurts, but he's the only quarterback in fantasy to score 20 points or more every week of the season (in standard scoring formats). Hurts has shown that he's probably not the long-term answer on the NFL field for the Eagles, but he's a valuable QB1 in all formats as long as he keeps running the ball.
Philadelphia Eagles running back Boston Scott shows up on offense in Week 7 and scored a touchdown, his first of the season. Starting running back Miles Sanders (ankle) was forced to leave with an injury, leaving backfield duties to rookie Kenneth Gainwell and Scott. Scott had been playing exclusively on special teams this season, but ran the ball seven times in this game, gaining 24 yards and scoring a touchdown. His score came on a one-yard plunge at the end of the third quarter. If Sanders is forced to miss time, Scott will likely find his way into a role on offense, but he's unlikely to develop much if any fantasy value.