From The Godfather: Week 13

Fri Nov 29 11:14pm ET
By CHARLIE WIEGERT
Contributing Writer

Hooray, no more byes!  For many leagues, this week is the last of the fantasy regular season. The push to make your playoffs is on.  Do what you can this week to make it So if you have to drop an injured player to get someone that might help you win this week, do it.

There are some interesting matchups this Sunday with three good team versus bad team games: Philadelphia at Miami, Green Bay at New York Giants, and Carolina at Washington.  If you’re looking for a defense to steam this week, those three good teams are at the top of the list.  The other possible defense is the New York Jets playing at winless Cincinnati although with Andy Dalton being reinstated as the Bengals quarterback, this could be the Bengals first win of the year.

The highlight game of the week is the 49ers traveling to Baltimore in what some think could be a Super Bowl preview.  Expect both teams to try and run the ball. The Ravens should be the more successful of the two, mainly because of Lamar Jackson.

Two high scoring games should be Oakland at Kansas City and Minnesota at Seattle.  Both are projected to be over 50 points, so offensive players on both teams are safe plays.

Quarterbacks: The top three are Lamar Jackson, Patrick Mahomes and Russell Wilson, but some others should have big days.  Aaron Rodgers has a date with a really bad Giants secondary. Jacksonville and Nick Foles play a Tampa Bay defense that have given up the most yards to wide receivers this year. Sam Darnold gets the winless Cincinnati defense. Carson Wentz plays a Miami defense that’s allowed two-plus passing touchdowns in nine of their last 12 games. Patrick Mahomes is licking his chops to get a Raiders defense that’s allowed three 400-plus passing yard games this year, one being the last time these two teams met.

Running Backs: The top three are Christian McCaffrey, Dalvin Cook and Leonard Fournette, but some others that should have big days are Jonathan Williams, who is coming off back-to-back 100-yard rushing games. Mark Ingram hopes to expose the 49ers rushing defense and keep some pressure off Jackson. Josh Jacobs should have a big day running through a less than stoppable Chief's defense, a team that has given up the most fantasy points to running backs this year.  And Miles Sanders runs against a Dolphin defense that’s given up the fifth most points to running backs.

Wide Receivers: The top three are Tyreek Hill, Davante Adams and Chris Godwin, but others that should have big days are D.K. Metcalf against a Vikings defense that’s given up the fourth most points to receivers and most to perimeter receivers. D.J. Chark gets a Bucs defense that’s given up the most points to wide receivers this year.  Julian Edelman will be the main receiver for Tom Brady against a weak Houston secondary. And D.J. Moore gets a sad Washington secondary to expose. A sleeper pick could be A.J. Brown at Indy.

Tight Ends: The top two are Travis Kelce and George Kittle, but some others that should have big days are Zach Ertz at Miami.  With all the injuries to the Eagles receivers and running Backs, Ertz is the main player in their offense.  Darren Waller will have a big day against the Chiefs. And my sleeper pick is Tyler Higbee, playing for the injured Gerald Everett against the team that gives up the most fantasy points to tight ends, Arizona.

Charlie Wiegert was the sixth person to be inducted in the Fantasy Sports Hall Of Fame in 2001. He is a founder of CDM Fantasy Sports and Fantasy Sports Trade Association. He has been playing and winning fantasy baseball leagues since 1984. If you have any questions for Charlie, email them to cwiegert@cdmsports.com. Follow him on Twitter @GFFantasySports.

Player Notes
Denzel Mims Aug 15 4:10pm ET

New York Jets wide receiver Denzel Mims missed practice on Friday due to a hamstring issue. The second-round rookie pick out of Baylor injured the hamstring while making a catch in drills earlier in the week. Head coach Adam Gase explained after Friday's practice, We were just running routes on air. It was a low throw. He just kind of took a weird step and really stretched himself out. He felt something. Were just going to have to see how long it takes. Fortunately, reports indicate that Mims is not expected to miss much practice time with the injury. Fantasy gamers who are rostering Mims certainly hope so, as the rookie will miss valuable practice reps while he is on the sidelines. Like all rookies, Mims lost out on valuable practice time, including rookie minicamps, this offseason due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

From RotoBaller

Julio Jones Aug 15 3:50pm ET

Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones has been working to stay in shape this offseason and has not undergone any surgeries, per The Atlanta Journal Constitution. The 31-year-old is still one of the best receivers in the game and going through the offseason without major injury concerns is a bright sign for the Alabama product's fantasy value heading into this season. Still firmly entrenched as the WR1 for Atlanta and coming off a 1,394 yard season, Jones stands firmly as a top-five fantasy receiver.

From RotoBaller

Jarvis Landry Aug 15 1:10pm ET

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry (hip) looked good in Friday's practice, according to head coach Kevin Stefanski. Landry had hip surgery on February 4 but he was able to participate in team drills on Friday and even found the end zone during 11-on-11 drill where he beat safety Andrew Sendejo deep and connected with Baker Mayfield for about a 50-yard score. Stefanski said of Landry, Ive been able to watch him progress here over the last couple of weeks. Hes doing a nice job. Hes not afraid to work. I enjoy watching him out on the practice field. I enjoy having him around the meeting rooms. Hes progressing nicely. All signs point toward Landry being ready for Week 1 when Cleveland faces off against the Baltimore Ravens.

From RotoBaller

Christian McCaffrey Aug 14 11:20pm ET

Elite Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey didn't hesitate to say his own name when it came to selecting the first pick in fantasy drafts, per ESPN. The 24-year-old's claim is backed up by an incredible 2019 season which saw him garner 1,387 rush yards, 4.8 rush yards per carry, 15 rush touchdowns, 116 receptions, 1,005 receiving yards, and four receiving touchdowns. The Panther also finished with the second most fantasy football points in the history of the game at 471 points. It should be no shock that the RB would consider himself the top pick for 2020 and with a role as the focal point of the Carolina offense, along with coming off an astounding fantasy season, there is no disputing that.

From RotoBaller

Antonio Gibson Aug 14 10:50pm ET

Washington Football Team running back/wide receiver could fill the role planned for recently-released running back Derrius Guice. Gibson has been practicing as both a running back and a wide receiver, but with Guice no longer in the backfield, Gibson could be the best bet in a still-crowded running back room. Adrian Peterson, Bryce Love, Peyton Barber, and J.D. McKissic will also be battling for playing time. Gibson is a huge upside/gadget player floor choice right now.

From RotoBaller

Dak Prescott Aug 14 10:50pm ET

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott said that he is "optimistic" about coming to an agreement with the team on a long-term contract extension after this season. It seems the two sides never got too close to a deal in the offseason, as Prescott wanted more money and fewer years than the Cowboys were offering. He'll play under the franchise tag this year and could be tagged again next year if the two sides still can't agree, although next year's tag would cost the team $38 million.

From RotoBaller

Baker Mayfield Aug 14 5:10pm ET

Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield said he's "finding out how to get back to the basics" after a disappointing sophomore campaign in 2019. "I lost myself in that and I wasn't able to be who I am for these guys on the team. I told them that," Mayfield continued. "I told them that if I'm not doing that, hold me accountable." Head coach Kevin Stefanski's zone-run and play-action scheme should fit Mayfield better, but some fantasy owners may still be skeptical. Mayfield was being taken as a top-five fantasy signal-caller in 2019. That won't happen in 2020 drafts, but the 25-year-old from Oklahoma could surprise some as a QB1 with an improved supporting cast.

From RotoBaller

Dalvin Cook Aug 14 5:00pm ET

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook plans to be a full participant at training camp while he seeks a long-term contract extension. "I'm out there full go, 1,000 percent," Cook said. The RB1 in fantasy should be present for workouts on Monday for the start of camp. The 25-year-old second-rounder was a top-five running back last year despite missing two games due to injury. With the Vikings passing game less of a certainty now that Stefon Diggs is in Buffalo, Minnesota could lean even more on Cook, both on the ground and through the air. Fantasy managers probably won't view the former Florida State running back as elite because of injury concerns, but he's been pretty money in his short career when he's on the field.

From RotoBaller

Marcus Mariota Aug 14 4:50pm ET

Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden said that quarterback Marcus Mariota "really fired me up today" at training camp on Friday. He has turned a corner with his ankle (injury) and he is a dazzling playmaker. He had a very nice day. It might just be coach speak, and we all know that Gruden typically loves almost every player he's laid eyes on in the NFL, but it's worth noting nonetheless. Incumbent Derek Carr could easily be on the hot seat early in 2020 if he doesn't impress the coaching staff with his production, and Mariota, despite his failures in Tennessee, remains athletic and is one of the highest-paid backup QBs in the league. If Mariota winds up making starts this year, he'd be a low-ceiling, low-end QB2.

From RotoBaller

Trevor Siemian Aug 14 4:43pm ET

Free-agent QB Trevor Siemian (Jets) worked out for the Detroit Lions Friday, Aug. 14.

From TheHuddle

Bronson Kaufusi Aug 14 4:33pm ET

New York Jets RB Kenneth Dixon (hip), DE Bronson Kaufusi (hamstring) and LB Jabari Zuniga (quadriceps) did not participate in practice Friday, Aug. 14.

From TheHuddle

Cordarrelle Patterson Aug 14 4:30pm ET

Chicago Bears wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson has been meeting with the running backs at camp, instead of the wide receivers. This could be an indication that head coach Matt Nagy is planning to use the speedy receiver out of the backfield more this year. This is Patterson's second year with the Bears. Last year, he caught 11 passes for 83 yards while adding 17 rushes for 103 yards. It's certainly an intriguing development, but we'll need to see it play out quite a bit more before we start to get excited about Patterson for fantasy purposes.

From RotoBaller

Mychal Kendricks Aug 14 4:03pm ET

Free-agent LB Mychal Kendricks (Seahawks) received interest from the Las Vegas Raiders, but the two sides were not able to reach a contract agreement, according to a source.

From TheHuddle

Romeo Okwara Aug 14 4:03pm ET

Detroit Lions DE Romeo Okwara (undisclosed) was activated from the Active/Non-Football Injury list Friday, Aug. 14. The team also waived S Jeremiah Dinson.

From TheHuddle

Jahleel Addae Aug 14 3:53pm ET

Free-agent S Jahleel Addae (Texans) is scheduled to work out for the Minnesota Vikings, according to a source.

From TheHuddle

Kevin Stefanski Aug 14 3:50pm ET

Cleveland Browns center JC Tretter underwent knee surgery on Thursday according to head coach Kevin Stefanski. The veteran lineman reportedly had the surgery to remove loose bodies from the knee. Stefanski would not elaborate on how long Tretter would be out but the NFL Network reported that he will probably only miss a couple weeks. In Tretters absence, rookie center Nick Harris will get a chance to show what he can do. Tretter is a key piece to a revamped Cleveland offensive line this year.

From RotoBaller

Leonard Williams Aug 14 3:33pm ET

New York Giants DT Leonard Williams (undisclosed) was activated from the Active/Non-Football Injury list Friday, Aug. 14.

From TheHuddle

Frank Gore Aug 14 3:23pm ET

New York Jets RB Frank Gore (hamstring) did not participate in practice Friday, Aug. 14, because of a hamstring injury. Head coach Adam Gase said Gore was held out as a precaution.

Fantasy Spin: Gore likely will be the No. 2 running back for the Jets and see a handful of carries each game. He could be a handcuff to Le'Veon Bell in fantasy leagues but probably will not have a big fantasy impact.

From TheHuddle

Pierre Desir Aug 14 3:23pm ET

New York Jets CB Pierre Desir (hamstring) did not participate in practice Friday, Aug. 14.

From TheHuddle

Baker Mayfield Aug 14 3:13pm ET

Cleveland Browns QB Baker Mayfield said Friday, Aug. 14, he 'lost myself' in 2019 and started doubting himself after a couple of sub-par performances. Mayfield, though, said Friday that's in the past. 'In a much better state, mentally, physically. Just ready to roll,' Mayfield told reporters at training camp. 'Back to where I need to be to be the leader.'

Fantasy Spin: Drafted as a breakout No. 1 QB last season, Mayfield stumbled badly, throwing for five fewer touchdowns and seven more interceptions than he did as a rookie in 2018. He should bounce back the other way some in 2020, but he's still figures to wind up as a QB2 when all's said and done.

From TheHuddle