TUESDAY’S DFS NEWS NUGGETS
1. Karlos Williams sustained a concussion Sunday
Williams did play deep into the fourth quarter against the Giants, so he either went undiagnosed or suffered the head injury on the final drive. Either way, he’ll have to get through the concussion protocol quickly (a la DeAndre Hopkins last week) if he wants to suit up against the Titans Sunday. Meanwhile, LeSean McCoy (hamstring) remains questionable at best. That leaves Anthony “Boobie” Dixon and Cierre Wood as the only healthy backs on the Bills roster. Sammy Watkins (calf) is also questionable again and the Bills are on the road against a team coming off a bye. Although Dixon and Wood are min-priced, and Tyrod Taylor is still underpriced at 5800, this is a scary spot. The Bills’ implied team total is just 22.25 points.
2. Cecil Shorts to miss golden chance to exploit Colts
In yesterday’s News and Notes, I highlighted the Colts’ struggles against slot receivers. Cecil Shorts had run 84.9 percent of his routes out of the slot this season, so this would have been his best matchup of the season. Instead, Shorts hurt his shoulder on the final play of the 48-21 loss at Atlanta and won’t play Thursday night. Nate Washington (hamstring) is questionable. It’s looking like fifth-round rookie Keith Mumphrey will have to take on a big role, including operating out of the slot (third-round rookie Jaelen Strong has been a healthy scratch the last three games). Vontae Davis will likely follow DeAndre Hopkins all over the outside parts of the field. Still, given the Texans’ quarterback inefficiency and Mumphrey’s uninspiring skill set, this is a situation I’m passing on.
3. Martavis Bryant and Antonio hath been freed
The four-game suspensions of both Antonio Gates and Ladarius Green are over. Gates enters the player pool in a nice spot as he gets the Steelers with Stevie Johnson (hamstring) and Malcom Floyd (concussion) in doubt. Although Ladarius is better than Gates at this point, we know the comfort level Philip Rivers has with Gates in the red zone. At $4200 and in this plus matchup, he’s certainly in play.
Martavis is even cheaper at $3800 and if Ben Roethlisberger (knee) were healthy, it would be a bonanza. But Big Ben is not healthy and Michael Vick is a shaky game-manager at this point in his career. Although Vick has the arm to hit Bryant with some deep bombs and the matchup is right for this ascending talent, Le’Veon Bell is the one I want. There’s just not enough confidence in Vick right now to open up the offense, which means a 25-touch floor for Bell.
4. Broncos confirm they’ll ride with RBBC
A much-improved Ronnie Hillman has been outplaying C.J. Anderson since camp started. At this point, the Broncos don’t have a choice but to give him his fair share of work. Coach Gary Kubiak confirmed as much Monday, saying he considers both backs “starters” and adding that they’ll continue to split carries. Given Peyton Manning’s hard-to-watch declined state, a sub-par offensive line and a slowed-down pace, this offense is not one I’ve been investing in and not one I will be anytime soon. Most of the players are priced like the Broncos of 2013 and early 2014 – not this version.