Cannon is officially active for Saturday’s matchup against the Houston Texans after previously being listed as questionable on the Jets’ injury report due to a toe injury. With Isaiah Crowell on injured reserve, Cannon will work behind Elijah McGuire as the change of pace running back following McGuire’s 20-touch performance in Week 14 where he saw 74 percent of the team’s snaps. The Texans defense ranks second in rush DVOA, so McGuire is a pure volume play on the abbreviated two-game slate, but he’s one that can still pay off his affordable salary given his ability to catch passed out of the backfield
Conner is technically still listed as questionable, but according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport, he is unlikely to play in Sunday’s matchup against the New England Patriots due to a knee injury that’s now forced him to miss two consecutive games. However, Conner should be fully ready to go for Week 16 after returning to practice on Friday afternoon. The game script against the Raiders last week was firmly in the favor of Jaylen Samuels, and he out-snapped Stevan Ridley 48-8, putting him firmly at the forefront of the Steelers backfield committee with Conner sidelined. Fortunately, Samuels should be able to rely on his receiving prowess as a solid floor once again in a game that Pittsburgh is unlikely to get out to a big lead.
Breida was limited in practice this week and is officially questionable for Sunday’s matchup against the Seattle Seahawks due to an ankle injury, while Goodwin and Pettis were mid-week additions to the Niners’ injury report and are also listed as questionable with their respective ailments. Goodwin only played on 33% of snaps in Week 14, which leaves some additional uncertainty surrounding his role if he’s able to suit up. However, Pettis has become the clear number one wide receiver on the outside, so his status will be some of the key news to monitor as Sunday approaches, and he remains firmly in play at his low salary across the industry, if healthy.
Baldwin was limited in practice and has officially been listed as questionable for Sunday’s matchup against the San Francisco 49ers due to a hip injury, while Penny has been ruled out with a knee injury after not practicing throughout the entire week. The absence of Penny should provide some clarity on the Seahawks running back situation with Chris Carson being the clear lead back and Mike Davis mixing in on passing downs. Tyler Lockett continues to lead the team in targets, but he saw at least six targets for just the second time in the last nine games with Baldwin sidelined for Monday night’s win. Since the Seahawks are such a run-heavy offense, Lockett can’t really be projected for a much higher target share than that even in a plus matchup versus the 49ers leaky secondary.
Wentz isn’t expected to suit up for Sunday night’s matchup against the Los Angeles Rams and has officially been listed as doubtful on the Eagles’ injury report due to a fractured vertebra in his back. In his likely absence, Nick Foles will draw the start under center and has obviously proven in the past that he can excel in this offense, though he’s definitely been inconsistent at times. Even with the Eagles currently projected as the largest underdogs of the week, Foles will be an intriguing salary saver on the Thursday-Monday slates or for those dabbling in Yahoo’s one million dollar contest, as they include the Sunday Night Football game as part of their main slate.
Stafford was limited in practice and is officially questionable for Sunday’s matchup against the Buffalo Bills due to a back issue, while Johnson and Ellington have been ruled out, as expected, after not participating in any practices throughout the entire week. The continued absence of Johnson will enable the committee of LeGarrette Blount, Theo Riddick, and Zach Zenner to continue handling all of the backfield touches, though given the Bills low implied team total and projected game flow, Riddick appears to be the “best” running back option as he’ll likely also see a bump in snaps in the slot with Ellington sidelined. Buffalo ranks ninth in rush DVOA, so this certainly isn’t the spot to target Blount and his 2.9 YPC average, especially with Zenner seeing an uptick in snaps in the Lions’ Week 14 win.
It was a limited practice and Conner’s first since suffering the ankle sprain. He’s still probably closer to doubtful for Sunday’s showdown with the Patriots, but his status will likely need to be confirmed on Sunday now. Jaylen Samuels saw 80% of the snaps in Week 14 including a goal line carry and is still very viable, despite the price increase, in a game with the highest total on the slate.
Johnson will play on Sunday, where a mouthwatering matchup awaits against a Falcons defense that is ranked nearly dead last in rush defense and has allowed the most receptions and receiving yards to running backs this season. With the Cardinals being large underdogs, look for their bell-cow to be heavily utilized in the passing game.
The Bears receiver was a full participant in practice Friday and Wednesday’s absence was simply a maintenance day. He’ll be out there for his normal allotment of snaps on Sunday against Green Bay, where he’s likely to lead the Bears wideouts in targets again.
The Falcons passing game will be at full strength in a game where they come in as home favorites and have a healthy implied team total of 27. Julio will certainly be capable of another dominating performance after going for over 100 yards and 2 touchdowns in last week’s loss at Green Bay. It’s also a solid bounce back spot for Hooper, though his floor remains low and he hasn’t reached 50 yards in a game over the past month.
Vernon Davis will be elevated to a near every-down role, one where the veteran tight end has excelled in the past. Given his $3,200 price on DraftKings, Davis should be a punt consideration. Thompson has been underwhelming and used sparingly since returning from his lengthy mid-season absence. He’s now dealing with an illness but can probably be ignored whether he plays or not, with Josh Johnson now under center for the Redskins. The same can be said for Josh Doctson who’s trying to clear the concussion protocol in time for Sunday.
It’s also being reported that the Colts wideout’s status may be decided in the next 24 hours after the team sees how his ankle responds tomorrow. After amassing nearly 200 receiving yards in last week’s upset win against the Texans, Hilton’s absence would leave the Colts passing offense with quite the challenge against an elite Cowboys secondary that has severely limited outside receivers of late. Ryan Grant, Zach Pascal, and Chester Rogers would pick up Hilton’s snaps with TE Eric Ebron being the team’s top passing option.
The veteran wideout will miss his third game in a row leaving his snaps to Chris Godwin and Adam Humphries who will both look to bounce back on the road against a tough Baltimore secondary in Week 15.
The Giants’ stud wideout regressed from his limited practice to a couple of DNP’s later in the week which will keep him sidelined a second straight week. Sterling Shepard should see a slight bump in targets and Corey Coleman should see a good portion of snaps again. However, the Titans boast a respectable pass defense and the Giants are likely to install a run-heavy game plan on the back of Saquon Barkley, similar to last week’s blowout of the Redskins.