Taylor, Williams injuries mar Week 4


Read ESPN’s fantasy football Daily Notes every weekday to stay caught up on the news you need to know and get a head start on the fantasy football content coming Monday and Tuesday to ESPN.com and the ESPN Fantasy App.

The news: Colts RB Jonathan Taylor suffered a high ankle sprain in the loss to the Titans.

What it means in fantasy: Taylor may not be able to join the team for Thursday night’s game against the Broncos because of a quick turnaround. Taylor will have further testing to determine the severity of the injury, according to coach Frank Reich. Whether Taylor will miss the Denver game is unclear. Taylor’s absence would be filled by Nyheim Hines and Deon Jackson.

Going deeper: Taylor has averaged 20.3 touches per game since 2020.


The news: Saints RB Alvin Kamara missed Sunday’s game against the Vikings with a rib injury.

What it means in fantasy: Kamara has been either limited or out of practice for each of the past three weeks with this rib injury. Latavius ​​Murray was activated from the Saints’ practice squad Saturday. He and Mark Ingram II formed the Saints’ running back by committee. Ingram missed a portion of the second half and spent time in the injury tent, but he returned to force Murray to split carries evenly with him. The Saints appear hesitant to turn the backfield over entirely to Ingram, so barring an injury, he will remain a fantasy RB3 until Kamara returns.


The news: Broncos RB Javonte Williams suffered what appeared to be a serious knee injury against the Raiders.

What it means in fantasy: After spending time in the medical tent, Williams headed to the locker room and was ruled out of the game. Broncos coach Nathaniel Hackett said he had no update on Williams’ status following the game. The second-year running back will have an MRI on Monday. There’s a possibility Williams will miss the majority of the season. Both Melvin Gordon and Mike Boone would see increased runs if Williams misses significant time, and fantasy managers should be planning alternatives.


The news: Chargers QB Justin Herbert completed 27 passes on 39 attempts for 340 yards and two touchdowns against the Texans.

What it means in fantasy: Herbert looks to be fully healthy after dealing with a rib injury over the past two weeks. His 19th 300-yard passing game tied the record for such games in a player’s first three seasons. It was Herbert’s seventh consecutive 300-plus-yard game on the road. Herbert should remain a solid QB1 against the Browns, even if Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney return healthy.


The news: Falcons TE Kyle Pitts was held to one reception and 25 yards.

What it means in fantasy: Pitts has been a frustrating player for fantasy managers to have on their rosters, especially considering he was the TE3 in our drafts trend this summer. Managers were at ease last week against the Seahawks when Pitts caught five of his eight targets for 87 receiving yards after he’d recorded only 10 targets, four receptions and 38 yards in Weeks 1 and 2. But against the Browns on Sunday, Pitts was targeted only four times. Parker Hesse played more snaps than Pitts against Cleveland and ran a similar number of routes. It is truly shocking that Pitts is not the focal point of the Falcons’ passing game, considering the team selected him ahead of Ja’Marr Chase in the 2021 draft. The problem with Pitts is that he’s difficult to trade and not someone you would drop. Streaming tight ends is an alternative until he gets things going.


The news: Packers WR Allen Lazard caught six of eight targets for 116 yards against the Patriots.

What it means in fantasy: Lazard led the Packers in receptions and receiving yards. By doing so, he established season highs in targets, receptions and receiving yards. As Aaron Rodgers’ top receiver, Lazard’s value continues to improve and should rank as a high end flex in Week 5 against the Giants in London.


The news: Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey finished with 108 total yards on 17 touches against the Cardinals.

What it means in fantasy: McCaffrey has surpassed 100 total yards in three consecutive games. Despite playing through quad and thigh injuries over the past three games, he averaged 21 touches per game. McCaffrey’s value is at its peak right now, so trading him away would maximize his value. The Panthers’ offense is painful, last in the league with 262.3 total yards per game.


The news: Vikings RB Dalvin Cook finished with 86 total yards on 22 touches against the Saints.

What it means in fantasy: Cook was the focal point of Minnesota’s offense against New Orleans on Sunday after a shoulder injury prevented him from practicing earlier in the week. However, Cook played fewer snaps than usual, 45 to Alexander Mattison’s 27. Look at the injury report this week to see if Cook is listed and if he is limited in practice. As I watched the game, it didn’t appear that his shoulder issue bothered him. Cook can be viewed as an RB1 against the Bears in Week 5. Mattison should be rostered by fantasy managers as a contingency plan, as he is still available in 52.2% of ESPN leagues. You don’t need to be a Cook manager to benefit from Mattison’s upside should he be called on to do more.


The news: Jets RB Breece Hall finished with 78 total yards on 19 touches against the Steelers.

What it means in fantasy: Hall appears to be the Jets’ lead back, with Michael Carter getting only 11 touches. Hall played a season-high 67% of the Jets’ snaps, according to Next Gen Stats. With Zach Wilson back under center, the Jets relied heavily on the running game, and Hall saw 58.8% of the Jets’ running back rushes in Week 4, up from 40.0% in Week 3 against the Bengals. This is great for Hall’s fantasy value moving forward, as he is demonstrating all the traits that made him one of the top NFL draft picks at running back: very good balance, patience behind his blockers and recognizing lane development before it happens. Hall is firmly on the radar as an RB2 with RB1 upside when the Dolphins come to the Meadowlands in Week 5.


The news: Buccaneers WR Mike Evans caught eight of 10 targets for 103 yards and two touchdowns against the Chiefs.

What it means in fantasy: Evans returned to the Buccaneers’ offense after his Week 3 suspension and immediately made an impact as he became the franchise’s all-time leader in yards from scrimmage with 9,546 yards, breaking a record set by former running back James Wilder more than two decades ago. Additionally, Evans holds the Buccaneers franchise records for receiving touchdowns and receiving yards. He also hopes to extend his NFL record of eight straight seasons with at least 1,000 receiving yards. Despite Chris Godwin’s return, Evans can be considered a weekly low-end WR1. So far this season, he’s averaged seven targets and 19.2 fantasy points.


The news: Giants WR Kenny Golladay suffered a knee injury in the third quarter against the Bears and did not return.

What it means in fantasy: Golladay has only 543 receiving yards for the Giants after signing a four-year, $72 million contract in free agency back in 2021. He hasn’t scored a receiving touchdown yet. Sterling Shepard also tore his ACL last week, ending his season. Both Kadarius Toney and Wan’Dale Robinson sat out against the Bears due to injuries. Darius Slayton replaced Golladay after his injury. He would likely remain the starter if the Giants don’t get healthier at wide receiver. New York ranks 28th with 27 pass attempts per game. It is unlikely that the Giants can support more than one fantasy-relevant wide receiver. Who will fill the void remains to be seen.


The news: Titans WR Treylon Burks was carted off the field with a foot injury against the Colts.

What it means in fantasy: Burks has had a rocky start to his professional career, catching just 10 passes for 129 yards through four games, including two of three targets for 14 yards against the Colts in Week 4. The 18th overall pick of the 2022 draft was seen leaving the Titans ‘ locker room on crutches. Tennessee ranks 30th with 26.3 pass attempts per game. Burks’ absence would elevate Robert Woods’ role, and he is still available in 34.6% of leagues. Over the last two games, Woods has 8 catches for 115 yards and a touchdown.


Need a fantasy league redo? Sign up for a team or start a new league to draft before the start of Week 5 (with Thursday Night Football) and start fresh with a 0-0 record and a 13-week schedule.


Today on ESPN.com/Fantasy and in the ESPN Fantasy App

• Eric Moody’s waiver wire pickups identify the top players to claim for your team

• Fantasy Focus podcast: Monday Morning Edition wraps up Sunday’s games (8 a.m. ET)

Tuesday:

• Week 5 fantasy football rankings at every position (PPR and NPPR)

Eric Karabell’s flex and superflex rankings for Week 5

• NFL Nation’s Fantasy Fallout: Beat reporters answer our most pressing fantasy questions

• Eric Karabell’s trade index and rest-of-season rankings for Week 5 and beyond

Matt Bowen’s streaming pickups: deeper picks for deeper leagues and emergency need

• Fantasy Focus podcast now at 10 am ET

In Case You Missed It:

• Matt Bowen and Tristan H. Cockcroft on the Week 4 fantasy highs and lows: Justin Jefferson is back, Austin Ekeler hits pay dirt

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