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Footballguys #253 - 12/30 - News And Notes From Around The League

Volume 20, #253 -- Sunday Night, December 30th, 2018

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Howdy Folks,

Good Monday to you. We're onto the Post Season.

We've got some News and Notes for you so let's get to it.

J

INSIDE THIS ISSUE

1. DAL - RB Rod Smith totals 14 touches

2. DAL - TE Blake Jarwin bursts onto the scene

3. DAL - QB Dak Prescott tosses four touchdowns

4. CAR - Ron Rivera will remain as head coach

5. TB - Dirk Koetter fired in Tampa Bay

6. NO - RB Dwayne Washington hits triple digits

7. NO - QB Teddy Bridgewater tosses TD in start

8. CAR - TE Ian Thomas scores in finale

9. LAR - Andrew Whitworth injured

10. CAR - Kyle Allen shows well in first NFL start

11. HOU - WR DeAndre Hopkins has outstanding game

12. GB - Just one grab for WR Randall Cobb

13. HOU - RB Lamar Miller reaches end zone

14. GB - TE Jimmy Graham wraps up poor season

15. HOU - QB Deshaun Watson throws for 234 yards

16. GB - Disappointing day for RB Jamaal Williams

17. DET - Two scores for WR T.J. Jones

18. JAX - QB Blake Bortles struggles in season finale

19. DET - Brandon Powell erupts for 103 yards

20. DET - RB Zach Zenner totals 123 yards, TD

21. DET - QB Matthew Stafford tosses two touchdowns

22. BUF - WR Zay Jones finishes up strong

23. NE - WR Julian Edelman catches five passes

24. BUF - QB Josh Allen finishes 2018 up strong

25. NE - RB James White plays well in Week 17

26. NE - RB Sony Michel finishes with 50 yards

27. NE - Four Touchdowns for QB Tom Brady

28. MIA - Ugly finish for WR DeVante Parker

29. NYJ - WR Robby Anderson held in check

30. MIA - WR Kenny Stills tosses TD pass in loss

31. MIA - RB Kenyan Drake posts 95 total yards

32. NYJ - RB Elijah McGuire rushes for 41 yards

33. MIA - QB Ryan Tannehill poor in season finale

34. NYJ - QB Sam Darnold quiet in Week 17


1. DAL - RB Rod Smith totals 14 touches

Source: 1 No Source

Dallas Cowboys RB Rod Smith rushed 12 times for 35 yards with a touchdown in Week 17 against the New York Giants and he added two grabs for 14 yards.

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Smith didn't do a lot to up his free agent profile in this one. He'll go back to the bench for the playoffs.

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2. DAL - TE Blake Jarwin bursts onto the scene

Source: NFL Network - Rich Eisen

Dallas Cowboys TE Blake Jarwin registered seven receptions for career highs of 119 yards and three touchdowns in Week 17 against the New York Giants on eight targets. Former TE Jason Witten never had three TDs in a game for the Cowboys.

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Jarwin will be a fashionable sleeper tight end next year on this performance alone. He's emerging for the right time as the Cowboys are looking make a run in the playoffs.

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3. DAL - QB Dak Prescott tosses four touchdowns

Source: 1 No Source

Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott completed 27-of-44 passes for 387 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions in the Week 17 game against the New York Giants.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

The Cowboys surprisingly played Prescott for the entire game, and he responded with a monster fantasy performance and last second victory. They'll need him at the top of his game against the Seahawks next week.

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4. CAR - Ron Rivera will remain as head coach

Source: NFL Network - Michael Silver

Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera will return to the team as head coach for the 2019 season, a source familiar with the situation said Sunday, Dec. 30.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

The Panthers had an epic collapse after starting the season 6-2 and then bad went to worse when Cam Newton's shoulder troubles surfaced again. The team basically had two seasons, one that pointed to better times ahead and one that pointed to a dark time for the franchise. Rivera will get another chance, but getting Newton's shoulder right will be the biggest story of the offseason.

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5. TB - Dirk Koetter fired in Tampa Bay

Source: NFL Network - Ian Rapoport

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers fired head coach Dirk Koetter after the team's Week 17 game against the Atlanta Falcons, a source said Sunday, Dec. 30. The Bucs ended up 5-11 in the 2018 regular season.

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The Bucs appeared to be turning the corner two years ago and they've spent a lot of money to upgrade the team, without any better results. It's time for a change at head coach, although recent news makes it sound like they won't have a change at quarterback.

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6. NO - RB Dwayne Washington hits triple digits

Source: 1 No Source

New Orleans Saints RB Dwayne Washington rushed 11 times for 108 yards in Week 17 against the Carolina Panthers.

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Washington got extended action with Alvin Kamara scratched and Mark Ingram rested for part of the game. His size/speed combination could earn him a larger role next year if the Saints let Ingram walk in free agency.

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7. NO - QB Teddy Bridgewater tosses TD in start

Source: 1 No Source

New Orleans Saints QB Teddy Bridgewater completed 14-of-22 passes for 118 yards, one touchdown and one interception in a Week 17 start against the Carolina Panthers.

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Bridgewater was playing with backups at many positions, but didn't do anything to increase excitement about making him a starter in free agency on a lackluster afternoon for the Saints.

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8. CAR - TE Ian Thomas scores in finale

Source: 1 No Source

Carolina Panthers TE Ian Thomas posted five grabs for 61 yards and a touchdown in the Week 17 game against the New Orleans Saints on seven targets.

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Thomas has shown that the Panthers are in good hands at tight end if Greg Olsen hangs up his cleats this offseason. He has been part of a rookie tight end class with some surprising early contributors.

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9. LAR - Andrew Whitworth injured

Source: TheRams.com - Myles Simmons

Los Angeles Rams OT Andrew Whitworth (knee) suffered a knee injury during the Week 17 game and is considered questionable to return.

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The Rams needed this game to secure the #2 seed and a bye, but it might have come at a great cost.

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10. CAR - Kyle Allen shows well in first NFL start

Source: 1 No Source

Carolina Panthers QB Kyle Allen completed 16-of-27 passes for 228 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions in the Week 17 game against the New Orleans Saints in his first NFL start.

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Allen was forced into duty, but showed enough to have some potential as a backup down the line. Week 17 can be a career-maker for players on the fringe of a roster like Allen.

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11. HOU - WR DeAndre Hopkins has outstanding game

Source: NFL.com

Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins caught 12 passes for 147 yards against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 17.

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Hopkins has been playing hurt lately, but you wouldn't know it from his box scores. He'll be a candidate to be the first wide receiver off of the board and #1 pick in PPR fantasy drafts next year.

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12. GB - Just one grab for WR Randall Cobb

Source: 1 No Source

Green Bay Packers WR Randall Cobb posted just one catch for 27 yards on five targets in Week 17 against the Detroit Lions.

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Cobb will be a free agent next year. Aaron Rodgers might lobby the team to bring him back, but no matter where he lands, he'll be a role player and non-factor for fantasy.

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13. HOU - RB Lamar Miller reaches end zone

Source: NFL.com

Houston Texans RB Lamar Miller rushed for 56 yards and one touchdown on 17 carries against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 17.

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Miller and the Texans running game continued to tread water heading into the playoffs. They could look to sign or draft a big name at the position next year.

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14. GB - TE Jimmy Graham wraps up poor season

Source: 1 No Source

Green Bay Packers TE Jimmy Graham registered three grabs for 21 yards on five targets in Week 17 against the Detroit Lions, finishing with 55 grabs, 636 yards and only two scores.

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Graham was a free agent and fantasy bust for the Packers this year. They are on the hook for more dead cap than they would save if they release him, so he'll probably remain a Packer in 2019.

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15. HOU - QB Deshaun Watson throws for 234 yards

Source: NFL.com

Houston Texans QB Deshaun Watson went 25-for-35 for 234 yards against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 17. He also rushed for 66 yards and one touchdown on 13 carries during the game.

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Watson took a lot of punishment and amassed a lot of fantasy points as a runner today. He has proven that 2017 wasn't a fluke for fantasy or "real" football, as he's leading his team to a division title and home playoff game next week.

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16. GB - Disappointing day for RB Jamaal Williams

Source: 1 No Source

Green Bay Packers RB Jamaal Williams ran eight times for just four yards in Week 17 against the Detroit Lions while adding three grabs for 16 yards.

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Williams had been a good fantasy play since Aaron Jones went down, but he did very little in this one that was marred by an Aaron Rodgers concussion. He'll go back to backup status next year.

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17. DET - Two scores for WR T.J. Jones

Source: 1 No Source

Detroit Lions WR T.J. Jones finished with three grabs for 40 yards and two touchdowns in Week 17 against the Green Bay Packers.

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Jones has hovered on the bottom of the depth chart for a while in Detroit and finally came through with an extended opportunity. He'll try to turn this performance into another contract as a free agent next year.

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18. JAX - QB Blake Bortles struggles in season finale

Source: NFL.com

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles 15-for-28 for 107 yards, zero touchdowns and one interception against the Houston Texans in Week 17. He also rushed for 15 yards on four carries during the game.

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Bortles will be a backup somewhere next year, and almost certainly not Jacksonville despite carrying 16.5 million dollars of dead cap in 2019.

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19. DET - Brandon Powell erupts for 103 yards

Source: 1 No Source

Detroit Lions WR Brandon Powell posted six grabs for a career-high 103 yards on nine targets in the Week 17 game against the Green Bay Packers.

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Powell was touted as Golden Tate's possible heir after the trade, in part due to Tate's recommendation. He'll be a player to monitor in the offseason for value growth in dynasty PPR leagues.

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20. DET - RB Zach Zenner totals 123 yards, TD

Source: 1 No Source

Detroit Lions RB Zach Zenner ran 21 times for 93 yards and a touchdown in Week 17 against the Green Bay Packers while posting a 30-yard reception on his two targets.

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It took an injury to Kerryon Johnson for Zenner to see the field, but he came through with a solid game late in the season for the second time in three years. He'll try to catch on in Detroit again or elsewhere as a free agent next year.

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21. DET - QB Matthew Stafford tosses two touchdowns

Source: 1 No Source

Detroit Lions QB Matthew Stafford completed 20-of-32 passes for 266 yards and two touchdowns in Week 17 against the Green Bay Packers. It was his first multi-TD game since Nov. 11 in Chicago.

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Stafford came alive without Kenny Golladay. He finished on a high note with murmurs about his future in Detroit being uncertain. The team is still very very likely to keep him, but that buzz is an indication of just how underwhelming he and the team has been in Matt Patricia's first year as a head coach.

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22. BUF - WR Zay Jones finishes up strong

Source: NFL

Buffalo Bills WR Zay Jones finished with six receptions, 93 yards and two touchdowns on nine targets in the Week 17 game against the Miami Dolphins. He ended up with five touchdowns over his final five outings.

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Jones disappeared some weeks, but also looked like Josh Allen's favorite target against the Dolphins. He'll be a late round flier next year with some upside if Allen progresses in his first full offseason.

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23. NE - WR Julian Edelman catches five passes

Source: NFL.com

New England Patriots WR Julian Edelman caught five passes for 69 yards and one touchdown against the New York Jets in Week 17.

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Edelman has emerged as the clear #1 in the New England passing game after Josh Gordon left with another suspension. He'll be a strong playoff fantasy commodity.

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24. BUF - QB Josh Allen finishes 2018 up strong

Source: 1 No Source

Buffalo Bills QB Josh Allen completed 17-of-26 passes for 224 yards, three touchdowns and an interceptions in Week 17 against the Miami Dolphins and he rushed for 95 yards and a pair of scores.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Allen displayed as a high a weekly fantasy ceiling as any quarterback during his best games, and saved his strongest game for last. He'll be a polarizing player in drafts next year, but one that carries week-winning potential.

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25. NE - RB James White plays well in Week 17

Source: NFL.com

New England Patriots RB James White caught four passes for 39 yards and one touchdown against the New York Jets in Week 17. He also rushed for 30 yards on four carries during the game.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

White had a fantasy breakout season for a stretch when injuries put more on his plate. He still showed he has flex value when all hands are on deck in this backfield and he's likely to have more value in playoff leagues than he showed in December.

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26. NE - RB Sony Michel finishes with 50 yards

Source: NFL.com

New England Patriots RB Sony Michel rushed for 50 yards on 14 carries against the New York Jets in Week 17.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Michel was kept out of the end zone as two Patriots running backs scored on passes instead this week. He was still a strong runner in his rookie year and should carry matchup RB2 value into 2019.

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27. NE - Four Touchdowns for QB Tom Brady

Source: NFL.com

New England Patriots QB Tom Brady went 24-for-33 for 250 yards and four touchdowns against the New York Jets in Week 17.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Brady had been a fantasy non-factor in recent weeks, but he put up big Week 17 numbers with efficient passing, especially in the red zone. He'll get a week off with the victory before hosting a divisional round game.

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28. MIA - Ugly finish for WR DeVante Parker

Source: 1 No Source

Miami Dolphins WR DeVante Parker was blanked on three targets in Week 17 against the Buffalo Bills.

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Here's hoping Parker stays healthy and finds a new team that wants to play him next year.

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29. NYJ - WR Robby Anderson held in check

Source: NFL.com

New York Jets WR Robby Anderson caught three passes for 24 yards against the New England Patriots in Week 17.

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Anderson was as hot as any receiver in the league coming into this week, but the Patriots shut him down. He'll still be a popular player to target in the mid-rounds next year as a rising talent with a young quarterback whose best football is ahead of him.

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30. MIA - WR Kenny Stills tosses TD pass in loss

Source: 1 No Source

Miami Dolphins WR Kenny Stills had three grabs for 27 yards on seven targets in Week 17 against the Buffalo Bills and he tossed a three-yard touchdown back to QB Ryan Tannehill.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Stills was a huge disappointment this year. He'll be a bounceback candidate next year, especially if the Dolphins can improve their quarterback situation.

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31. MIA - RB Kenyan Drake posts 95 total yards

Source: 1 No Source

Miami Dolphins RB Kenyan Drake ran 11 times for 43 yards in Week 17 against the Buffalo Bills and he added five grabs for 52 yards on five targets.

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Drake's usage was one of the most frustrating things in fantasy football this year, but he did give us an all-time memorable play. Hopefully the Dolphins have a new coach next year that uses Drake in a way more befitting of his talent.

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32. NYJ - RB Elijah McGuire rushes for 41 yards

Source: NFL.com

New York Jets RB Elijah McGuire rushed for 41 yards on 18 carries against the New England Patriots in Week 17. He also caught two passes for 24 yards during the game.

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McGuire was productive the last two weeks, but languished with the Jets offense this week. He didn't do much to stake a claim to the starting running back job in the future. The Jets should be players in the LeVeon Bell sweepstakes this offseason.

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33. MIA - QB Ryan Tannehill poor in season finale

Source: 1 No Source

Miami Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill completed 18-of-31 passes for 147 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions in the Week 17 game against the Buffalo Bills.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

The Dolphins should have a new quarterback and head coach next year. We'll see if the management decides to find a new direction after the Dolphins collapsed over the last three weeks.

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34. NYJ - QB Sam Darnold quiet in Week 17

Source: NFL.com

New York Jets QB Sam Darnold went 16-for-28 for 167 yards against the New England Patriots in Week 17. He also rushed for 28 yards on one carry during the game.

[ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ FOOTBALLGUYS VIEW ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ] ]

Darnold's late season hot streak came to a screeching halt in Foxboro. It was still enough to give Jets fans hope, but maybe not 2019 fantasy drafters at the deep position of quarterback.

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That'll do it for today, Folks. Thanks for reading and thanks for being part of Footballguys. We'll see you tomorrow with the Update.

Peace,

J