Thu Nov 19 6:44pm ET
By JOE REEDY
AP Sports Writer
New England Patriots' Damien Harris, right, is pushed out of bounds by New York Jets' Ashtyn Davis (32) just before the end zone during the second half of an NFL football game, Monday, Nov. 9, 2020, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)
New York Jets head coach Adam Gase reacts during an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Oct. 11, 2020, in East Rutherford, N.J. From the unbeaten Steelers at the top to the winless Jets at the bottom, predictability has taken a hike halfway through NFL 2020. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)
In this Monday, Nov. 9, 2020, file photo, New York Jets head coach Adam Gase walks on the sideline during the first half of an NFL football game against the New England Patriots in East Rutherford, N.J. The Los Angeles Chargers host the winless Jets on Sunday, in a midseason matchup of struggling teams. (AP Photo/Corey Sipkin, File)
Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) stands on the sidelines, during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
Los Angeles Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn, center, talks to his staff on the sidelines during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Nov. 15, 2020, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
LOS ANGELES (AP) Joey Bosa remembers the last time the Los Angeles Chargers faced a winless team this far into a season. He's hoping history doesn't repeat itself Sunday when they host the winless New York Jets in a midseason matchup of struggling squads.
The Jets are the 27th team since the merger to go without a win in their first nine games. Meanwhile, the Chargers are on a three-game losing skid along with dropping seven of their past eight games.
''You can't take anyone lightly. I learned that because I've been in this situation before,'' Bosa said. ''I liked to think we have a talented team, but we are 2-7 right now. It is important for us to stay locked in.''
Bosa brought up the Chargers' Christmas Eve game at Cleveland four years ago, when the 0-14 Browns held on for a 20-17 victory after Josh Lambo's field goal attempt sailed wide right as time expired. That game sealed Mike McCoy's fate as coach and led to the hiring of Anthony Lynn.
New York will try to become the eighth team to get its first victory in its 10th game. The Jets come in rested off of their bye week and a narrow loss to New England on Nov. 9. They had a 10-point lead midway through the fourth quarter before the Patriots scored 13 points in the final 6:04 to emerge with a 30-27 victory.
The Jets have been shaking up their roster over the past several weeks and had 10 rookies see action against the Patriots. The secondary will have three rookie cornerbacks with the recent releases of Quincy Wilson and Pierre Desir. Those are the latest moves in a year that has seen the Jets also part with running back Le'Veon Bell along with trading Avery Williamson and Steve McLendon.
Coach Adam Gase has been on the defensive about getting younger and trying to dispel the perception the Jets are tanking to get the first pick in the draft.
''I think where we're at right now, we're really looking to play as many of these young guys as possible,'' Gase said. ''I mean, you watch these guys come off the field, whatever they have, they're giving it. We've just got to figure out a way to finish these games to where we're winning the game, we've got one more point than the other side.''
The Chargers are looking to bounce back after being outplayed in all three phases last week at Miami. All six of their losses have been by eight points or fewer. Despite the close margins, the frustration level continues to rise.
''At the end of the day, when we're presented opportunities to make plays, we have to,'' Bosa said. ''The difference in every one of our games is two or three plays. So if we turn the tide on two or three of those plays, I think every game could be different this year.''
FLYING WITH FLACCO
Joe Flacco threw three touchdown passes against New England in the Jets' last game - the same total Sam Darnold had in the six games he started. Flacco gets his fourth start of the season with Darnold still sidelined with a shoulder injury.
Gase's offense has struggled all year, ranking last in the NFL in several categories. They have just 10 TDs on offense this season. But with all three of the team's top wide receivers - Jamison Crowder, Breshad Perriman and Denzel Mims - playing together for the first time against New England, there's some new optimism the Jets and Flacco can continue getting on the scoreboard more frequently.
''We've definitely struggled to put the ball in the end zone for a lot of the year,'' Flacco said. ''Being able to put the ball in the end zone like we did last week, I think it got guys' confidence going again. It got guys believing we can do it.''
LOTS OF GORE
Rookie running back La'Mical Perine has gotten more snaps lately, but 37-year-old Frank Gore continues to see lots of action despite the focus on young players getting on the field.
Gore has run for 182 yards on 44 carries - averaging 4.1 yards per attempt - over his last four games. In that same span, Perine has 113 yards on 32 attempts - 3.5 yards -- and one of the Jets' three TD runs this year.
Despite Gore getting more work, including playing 23 snaps compared to Perine's 21, Gase anticipates that changing in the second half of the season.
HERBERT NEAR MILESTONE
Los Angeles QB Justin Herbert is the first rookie to throw multiple touchdowns in six straight games. A TD pass on Sunday would tie him with George Ratterman as the fourth-fastest player to throw 20 TD passes in NFL history. Patrick Mahomes, Deshaun Watson and Kurt Warner did it in eight games.
Herbert struggled last week against Miami, throwing for a season-low 187 yards. The Jets defense is ranked 29th against the pass, but is similar to the Dolphins because coordinator Gregg Williams likes bringing plenty of pressure packages. New York rushes five or more on 36.6% of its defensive snaps, which is eighth in the league.
NOT SO SPECIAL
If the Chargers have any hopes of winning, they will need to turn things around on special teams. Los Angeles has had a punt blocked in two of its last three games, is near the bottom of the league in return and coverage averages and has committed a league-high 14 penalties.
AP Pro Football Writer Dennis Waszak Jr. contributed.
Five Waiver Wire Adds: Week 13
The New York Giants placed starting outside linebacker Kyle Fackrell (calf) on Injured Reserve on Tuesday with a calf injury. Fackrell will miss at least the next three games, leaving the Giants very short-handed at the position. He was tied for second on the team with three sacks and was playing close to 100 percent of the defensive snaps before suffering the injury in the Week 12 win over the Bengals. No outside linebacker on the active roster has more than one sack this year. Linebackers Lorenzo Carter and Oshane Ximines are also on IR. Jamaal Sheard and rookies Carter Coughlin and Cam Brown could start in Week 13 against the Seahawks, making the New York defense one to avoid for fantasy managers after they were a popular streaming defense against Cincy.
The Denver Broncos activated quarterbacks Drew Lock, Brett Rypien and Blake Bortles from the Reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday after all three had PCR tests come back negative on Monday. They will all be eligible to play in Week 13 against the Chiefs. So barring additional team discipline, the Broncos won't be forced to use a practice-squad wide receiver under center against their division rivals. If Lock returns as the starter for this offense, it'll be excellent news for receivers Jerry Jeudy, Tim Patrick and K.J. Hamler and tight end Noah Fant. Denver will likely be forced to throw often to keep up with the Chiefs high-octane offense, too, but Lock's inconsistency this season keeps him as a low-end QB2. The 24-year-old was 24-for-40 for 254 yards and two interceptions in the first meeting against KC back in Week 7.
The Atlanta Falcons placed wide receiver Olamide Zaccheaus (toe) on Injured Reserve on Tuesday after he left the Week 12 win over the Raiders with a toe injury. In a corresponding move, the team activated receiver Laquon Treadwell from the Reserve/COVID-19 list and added him to the 53-man roster. Zaccheaus popped up for a couple decent games this year, but it his production was inconsistent on a weekly basis and he was too far down the team's receiving depth chart to be a viable fantasy option in most leagues. The second-year wideout's best game came in Week 9 against the Broncos when he had four receptions for 103 yards and his first touchdown of the season. If he doesn't make it back this year, he'll finish with 20 receptions (32 targets) for 274 yards and the one touchdown. Christian Blake and Brandon Powell could see some more playing time as the No. 4 wideout with Zaccheaus out.
Baltimore Ravens running backs J.K. Dobbins and Mark Ingram II are both eligible to be activated from the Reserve/COVID-19 list prior to the Week 12 game against the Steelers on Wednesday, but it's not a given that either will play. Both players have been isolated since testing positive for the virus on Nov. 22 and aren't allowed to fly on the team plane on Tuesday night. At this point, if you have Dobbins or Ingram on your roster, you've likely benched them for other running backs that already played in Week 12. Even if they both play, Gus Edwards could see the majority of backfield touches and will be the best fantasy play of the trio. Those that picked up Edwards in order to start him this week are hoping that neither Dobbins nor Ingram suit up in the tough matchup against the undefeated Steelers.
The Baltimore Ravens activated defensive tackle Brandon Williams, quarterback Trace McSorley, nickelback Tavon Young and cornerback Khalil Dorsey from the Reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday. They could activate more players from the list before kickoff against the Steelers on Wednesday. McSorley should be the backup to Robert Griffin III on Wednesday with Lamar Jackson testing positive for COVID-19 and being unavailable this week. The return of Williams will be good news for Baltimore's defensive line, who will again be without Pro Bowl defensive lineman Calais Campbell. The Ravens Defense is more of a gamble in DFS and season-long leagues against the undefeated Steelers, but inclement weather is expected and could make things tougher on both offenses.
Minnesota Vikings RB Dalvin Cook (ankle) is 'just kind of beat up,' according to offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Fantasy Spin: Cook briefly left the Week 12 game against the Carolina Panthers but returned to finish with 83 total yards and 22 touches. He leads the league with 1,385 yards from scrimmage and 14 total touchdowns on the season. The Vikings' schedule gets much tougher following the Week 13 home date against the Jacksonville Jaguars, but he'll remain a matchup-proof RB1 due to his heavy usage.
San Francisco 49ers DT D.J. Jones, DE Jordan Willis and practice squad TE Daniel Helm will be activated from the Reserve/COVID-19 list and practice Thursday, Dec. 3, according to head coach Kyle Shanahan Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Los Angeles Chargers TE Matt Sokol and DB Jaylen Watkins were designated as protected practice squad players for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Las Vegas Raiders LB Vic Beasley, PK Dominik Eberle, DE David Irving and DE Chris Smith were designated as protected practice squad players for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Houston Texans WR Chad Hansen, DT Corey Liuget, WR Steven Mitchell Jr. and WR Damion Ratley were designated as protected practice squad players for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Jacksonville Jaguars WR Terry Godwin, DB Josh Nurse, DT Caraun Reid and PK Aldrick Rosas were designated as protected practice squad players for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Dallas Cowboys DB Deante Burton, OT Jordan Mills, DB Rashard Robinson and OT William Sweet were named protected practice squad players for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Denver Broncos RB LeVante Bellamy, TE Troy Fumagalli, DB Alijah Holder and LB Josh Watson were made protected practice squad players for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Cleveland Browns OT Michael Dunn, QB Kyle Lauletta, PK Matthew McCrane and OT Alex Taylor were designated as protected practice squad players for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Free-agent WR Joe Webb (Lions) is visiting the New York Giants Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Chicago Bears QB Tyler Bray was designated as a protected practice squad player for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Cincinnati Bengals QB Kevin Hogan, WR Stanley Morgan, RB Jacques Patrick and TE Mitchell Wilcox were named as protected practice squad players for Week 13 Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Buffalo Bills DE Bryan Cox Jr., C Jordan Devey, C Jonotthan Harrison and LB Darron Lee were chosen as protected practice squad players for Week 13 on Tuesday, Dec. 1.
Houston Texans WR Will Fuller and CB Bradley Roby were officially placed on the Reserve/Suspended list Tuesday, Dec. 1. The Texans also activated DT Andrew Brown from the Exempt/Commissioner Permission list.
Arizona Cardinals TE Seth DeValve, DE Michael Dogbe, RB D.J. Foster and WR A.J. Richardson were chosen as protected practice squad players for Week 13 on Tuesday, Dec. 1.