ESPN secures rights to Monday night wild-card game

Wed Oct 13 5:18pm ET

NEW YORK (AP) ESPN has signed a five-year agreement with the NFL to broadcast the Monday night game during the first weekend of the playoffs, beginning this season.

The announcement was made by ESPN president Jimmy Pitaro at the CAA World Congress of Sport. The NFL announced last month that it was moving the Saturday early afternoon game on wild-card weekend to Monday night.

There will be two games on Saturday (4:35 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. ET), three on Sunday (1:05 p.m., 4:40 p.m., and 8:15 p.m. ET), and one on Monday (8:15 p.m. ET).

The Monday night game will also air on ABC while ESPN2 will feature an alternate feed with Peyton and Eli Manning.

CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus said before the season started that CBS will have the Sunday late afternoon game, which will again feature a kids-focused broadcast on Nickelodeon. NBC is expected to have the Sunday night game as one of its two that weekend.

CBS also has two games while Fox and ESPN/ABC have one apiece. ESPN and ABC will also have a Saturday doubleheader the final week of the regular season.

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Player Notes
Chris Carson Oct 24 11:30am ET
Chris Carson

Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said there is no ETA on when running back Chris Carson (neck) might return from Injured Reserve, but he said Carson is workout out hard and is conditioning to be ready if/when he can return. Carson remains on IR and isn't eligible to return until Week 10 against the Green Bay Packers, and there's nothing to currently suggest that he'll make that timetable. Alex Collins has operated as the team's primary back in the last two games with Carson sidelined, but Rashaad Penny (calf) is returning from IR this week and figures to have a role alongside DeeJay Dallas and Travis Homer. Collins remains the best bet for fantasy production as a touchdown-dependent RB2/3, but this backfield will be tougher to predict with Penny now in the fold.

From RotoBaller

D'Wayne Eskridge Oct 24 11:30am ET
D'Wayne Eskridge

Seattle Seahawks rookie wide receiver Dee Eskridge (concussion) was out of the area this week getting more tests done and currently has no timetable to return from his head injury, according to head coach Pete Carroll. Eskridge caught his only target for six yards and had two carries in the season opener for 22 yards before suffering a concussion, and he hasn't played since. The 24-year-old appears to have a pretty serious concussion and remains on Injured Reserve, so he doesn't appear close to returning anytime soon. D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett remain Seattle's dynamic one-two punch at receiver, with Freddie Swain serving as the No. 3. But until quarterback Russell Wilson (finger) returns (possibly in Week 10), Seattle's passing attack will be hindered with backup Geno Smith under center.

From RotoBaller

Alex Collins Oct 24 11:20am ET
Alex Collins

Seattle Seahawks running back Alex Collins (groin), who is listed as questionable for Week 7 against the New Orleans Saints, is expected to play on Monday night, according to head coach Pete Carroll. Collins returned to practice on Saturday after missing practice on Thursday and Friday and looked good. The 27-year-old has functioned as Seattle's primary early down back with Chris Carson (neck) on Injured Reserve the last two weeks, carrying the ball 35 times for 148 yards and one touchdown. DeeJay Dallas and Travis Homer have served in change-of-pace roles, but Rashaad Penny (calf) has returned from his own IR stint and is expected to play on Monday night, which will likely cut into Collins' workload a bit. The Saints have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points per game to RBs in the last three weeks, but they've only allowed 130 rushing yards in their last two games combined. Collins will be on the RB2/3 borderline and will probably need a touchdown to return solid value.

From RotoBaller

Deonte Harris Oct 24 11:20am ET
Deonte Harris

New Orleans Saints quarterback Taysom Hill (concussion) and wide receiver Deonte Harris (hamstring) have been ruled out for the Monday night game in Week 7 against the Seattle Seahawks. With Hill and Harris out, it will mean more red-zone opportunities for the likes of running back Alvin Kamara, wide receiver Marquez Callaway and tight end Juwan Johnson against Seattle. Hill has operated as the backup to Jameis Winston this year, but he's been a successful goal-line weapon for New Orleans with three rushing touchdowns on only 16 attempts through five games. Callaway will be the team's top receiving threat, while Kenny Stills should also have an expanded role in the passing attack with Harris sidelined after getting injured before the Week 6 bye.

From RotoBaller

DeVante Parker Oct 24 10:33am ET
DeVante Parker

Miami Dolphins WR DeVante Parker (shoulder, hamstring) appears to be facing an uphill battle to play in Week 7's game against the Atlanta Falcons, according to a source.

Fantasy Spin: Parker had been listed as questionable on the injury report after being a limited participant in all three of the team's practice sessions throughout the week. If he is declared active for the game, he could be viewed as a flex option in fantasy leagues, although owners should have alternatives available in the event that he misses this afternoon's contest.

From TheHuddle

Jared Goff Oct 24 10:13am ET
Jared Goff

Detroit Lions QB Jared Goff is not in danger of losing his job as the team's starting quarterback to QB David Blough, according to multiple sources.

Fantasy Spin: Goff has only thrown two touchdown passes in his last four games and has not reached the 300-yard passing mark since the season opener. With few offensive playmakers on the roster, he should be avoided in most fantasy leagues.

From TheHuddle

John Ross Oct 24 10:10am ET
John Ross

New York Giants wide receiver John Ross (hamstring) is likely to suit up for Sunday's outing against the Panthers. Ross has been dealing with a hamstring issue, although he managed to practice sparingly on Thursday and Friday, which is always a good sign regarding a player's anticipated availability. The former Bengal received an uptick in snaps over the last few weeks. However, with Darius Slayton (hamstring) andEvan Engram (calf) expected to play, andSterling Shepard (hamstring) labeled as a game-time call, Ross should be avoided in all fantasy formats in Week 8.

From RotoBaller

Xavien Howard Oct 24 10:03am ET
Xavien Howard

Miami Dolphins CB Xavien Howard (shoulder, groin) is expected to play in Week 7's game against the Atlanta Falcons. He was listed as questionable on the injury report after being a limited practice participant throughout the week.

From TheHuddle

Dak Prescott Oct 24 9:53am ET
Dak Prescott

Although Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott (calf) is unlikely to participate in a light practice session when the team returns from their bye Monday, Oct. 25, he could resume practicing Wednesday, Oct. 27, according to multiple sources. The team is optimistic that he will be able to start Week 8's game against the Minnesota Vikings.

Fantasy Spin: Although Prescott should be started in all fantasy formats when healthy, he makes a somewhat risky option for Week 8 because the Dallas-Minnesota contest will be the Sunday Night Football matchup, which would leave many owners in a bind if he is declared inactive at the last minute. Fantasy owners should check back for frequent updates throughout the week on Prescott's status at practice.

From TheHuddle

Dak Prescott Oct 24 9:50am ET
Dak Prescott

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (calf) has been progressing in the right direction after being injured during the Week 6 matchup against the New England Patriots. Prescott spent most of his bye week in the pool, and he should be ready to practice by Wednesday. Nonetheless, fantasy managers should continue to monitor his status and await his official designation ahead of the Week 8 outing in Minnesota.

From RotoBaller

Saquon Barkley Oct 24 9:40am ET
Saquon Barkley

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (ankle) is out for Week 7 versus the Panthers. However, while he has a slight chance to make it back for Monday Night Football against the Kansas City Chiefs, fantasy managers realistically shouldn't expect him back until Week 9 versus the Oakland Raiders. Nonetheless, until Barkley is ready to return, Devontae Booker will likely continue to handle duties out of the backfield and has plenty of appeal in all formats.

From RotoBaller

Ryan Fitzpatrick Oct 24 9:23am ET
Ryan Fitzpatrick

Washington Football Team QB Ryan Fitzpatrick (hip) is still relying on crutches to get around and is not close to returning to action, according to multiple sources. He is expected to undergo an MRI exam in the next few weeks and appears unlikely to return before the team's Week 9 bye on Nov. 7.

Fantasy Spin: Fitzpatrick's rehab process has not moved as quickly as initially hoped and there is a possibility that he won't return to the field this season. Taylor Heinicke will continue to serve as Washington's No. 1 quarterback in the interim and can be a starting option in two-quarterback fantasy leagues.

From TheHuddle

Jimmy Garoppolo Oct 24 9:13am ET
Jimmy Garoppolo

San Francisco 49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo will start Week 7's game against the Indianapolis Colts.

Fantasy Spin: Garoppolo had been sidelined recently because of a calf injury but is no longer listed on the team's injury report after logging two limited practice sessions and one full session during the week. Although he won't have to worry about sharing offensive snaps with injured QB Trey Lance (knee) this weekend, Garoppolo is only worthy of being a starting option in two-quarterback fantasy leagues.

From TheHuddle

Evan Engram Oct 24 9:03am ET
Evan Engram

New York Giants TE Evan Engram (calf) is expected to play in Week 7's game against the Carolina Panthers, according to a source.

Fantasy Spin: Engram had been listed as questionable on the injury report after missing practice Thursday, Oct. 21, and participating in a limited practice session Friday, Oct. 22. If he is declared active for the game, he should be viewed as a low-end TE1 option in deeper fantasy leagues.

From TheHuddle

Sterling Shepard Oct 24 9:03am ET
Sterling Shepard

New York Giants WR Sterling Shepard (hamstring) is considered a game-time decision for Week 7's game against the Carolina Panthers, according to a source.

Fantasy Spin: Shepard sustained a hamstring injury during practice Thursday, Oct. 21, and was officially designated as questionable after participating in the following day's practice session on a limited basis. If he is declared active, he should be viewed as a WR3 or flex option for fantasy leagues.

From TheHuddle

Darius Slayton Oct 24 9:00am ET
Darius Slayton

New York Giants tight end Evan Engram (calf) and wide receiver Darius Slayton (hamstring) are likely to play Sunday against the Panthers. ESPN's Adam Schefter notes that the two should be good to go unless they suffer a setback in pre-game warmups. Engram and Slayton have had limited roles so far- but could be pivotal players against Carolina with the Giants already down Saquon Barkley (ankle), Kenny Golladay (knee), and Kadarius Toney (ankle). The Panthers have a stingy pass defense, ranking seventh in pass DVOA, though Engram and Slayton could see enough volume to make an impact this week.

From RotoBaller

DeVante Parker Oct 24 9:00am ET
DeVante Parker

Miami Dolphins wide receiver DeVante Parker (shoulder, hamstring), listed as questionable, is looking iffy for Sunday's game against the Falcons. Parker seemed to take a step in the right direction, as he was a limited participant at practice after not taking the field for any sessions the previous week. Fellow wideout Preston Williams (groin) is also questionable for the contest. If Parker misses another game, look for rookie Jaylen Waddle, coming off of a 10-catch, 70-yard, two-touchdown game, to command a large number of targets once again in an excellent matchup against Atlanta. Mike Gesicki should also continue to see his fair share of work in the passing game. Both are strong plays Sunday.

From RotoBaller

Antonio Gibson Oct 24 8:50am ET
Antonio Gibson

Washington Football Team running back Antonio Gibson (shin), dealing with a nagging injury, is expected to suit up Sunday against the Packers. ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that Gibson was dealing with a hairline fracture in his shin earlier in the year, an injury that seemed to pop back up during last week's contest. Bothered by the injury, the star halfback has yet to exceed the 100-yard scrimmage mark since Week 3- though he does have three touchdowns in his last three games played. Gibson remains in starting territory thanks to his talent and a favorable matchup against a Packers defense that ranks 30th in rush DVOA. He will likely continue to be more touchdown-dependent than usual.

From RotoBaller

Genard Avery Oct 24 8:43am ET
Genard Avery

Philadelphia Eagles LB Genard Avery was fined $5,111 by the National Football League for getting in the face of Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Leonard Fournette late in Week 6's game and taking a critical penalty.

From TheHuddle