THURSDAY’S DFS NEWS NUGGETS
1. Odell Beckham fighting hamstring issue yet again
One of the reasons Odell Beckham’s rookie campaign was so outrageous was because he missed the entire offseason program plus the first four weeks of the regular season due to a severe hamstring pull. Then he sat out some spring work ahead of this season with another hamstring issue. And now Beckham is questionable for Monday night’s Week 6 game after straining his hamstring in Week 5.
According to NJ.com, Beckham does have swelling in the area but an MRI showed no serious tears. He’s optimistic he’ll play in a tasty spot against the Eagles Sunday. The concern is similar to the one we have with Julio Jones (hamstring) tonight. When paying $8900 for a player, you better be damn sure he’s at or close to 100 percent. Given how easily aggravated soft-tissue injuries are, I can’t put Beckham into my lineups right now.
2. Ravens lose Lorenzo Taliaferro for season
This news will get swept under the rug because Taliaferro is merely a No. 2 back. But he was creeping hard on Justin Forsett until a foot injury ended his season. When Taliaferro was last healthy (Week 2), he played on 41.5 percent of the snaps and got 10 touches for 46 yards with a touchdown. Most importantly, he was acting as the Ravens’ red-zone back ahead of Forsett. So Forsett’s touchdown projection gets a little boost going forward, which is important because it’s not very high to begin with. The new backup is Buck Allen – who will be someone to keep an eye on if Forsett’s ankle sprain doesn’t heal up before Sunday’s game at San Francisco.
3. Hankerson and Julio both probable for Thursday night
The Thursday slate is tricky this week as we have a game with a total of 51.5, second-highest on the week. It’s not the kind of Thursday game we can fade. Wednesday’s injury report brought news that both Julio Jones (hamstring) and Leonard Hankerson (ribs) will play, but we still don’t have clarity on how close they are to 100 percent. In fact, NFL Network reported that Julio could be on a pitch count just four days after he labored through the narrow win over the Redskins. Not using any Falcons WRs is scary because the matchup is so ideal, but it’s hard to pull the trigger on either given the injuries and prices. Willie Snead and Devonta Freeman are by far the safest plays in this game.
4. Derek Carrier’s role gives him a ceiling in Week 6
Jordan Reed (concussion) is not expected back for Sunday’s game against the Jets. So it’ll be Derek Carrier once again. Although Carrier only saw three targets in Week 5, the underlying stats paint a far different picture. He played on 95.2 percent of the snaps and was only asked to pass-block five times. Carrier ran 30 routes, which makes sense because he’s a former wideout with a really, really strong athletic profile. The floor here is low in a tough matchup at the Jets. But Carrier’s ceiling at just $2500 is bigger than most realize.