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 today and tomorrow to ESPN.com and the ESPN Fantasy App.
The news: Cardinals WR Rondale Moore suffered a groin injury against the 49ers on Monday night.
What it means in fantasy: Moore was injured during the Cardinals’ first drive and was replaced by Greg Dortch, who played 91% of the offensive snaps and ran the same number of routes as DeAndre Hopkins. Marquise Brown returned to practice this week but was not activated from the IR prior to the game. Dortch had served as the slot receiver earlier in the season before Moore was healthy enough to assume the role and averaged 66 receiving yards per game. On Monday, he amassed a season-high 103 yards. In the event Moore misses significant time with the groin injury, Dortch, who is rostered in only 0.7% of ESPN leagues, should be picked by fantasy managers in deeper formats. He would operate as the Cardinals’ No. 3 receivers behind Hopkins and Brown.
Going deeper: Colt McCoy’s 47-yard pass to Dortch was the longest offensive play for the Cardinals this season.
The news: The Broncos waived RB Melvin Gordon III. RB Chase Edmonds is expected to miss time with a high ankle sprain.
What it means in fantasy: Gordon’s third lost fumble of the season on the goal line against the Raiders on Sunday was the final straw for the Broncos coaching staff. With Edmonds sidelined and Gordon cut, the Broncos are left with Latavius Murray and Marlon Mack as their top two running backs. Murray can be viewed as an RB2 based solely on volume, even though Denver’s offense ranks 21st in total yards and 32nd in points per game.
The news: Bears QB Justin Fields is “day-to-day” with a left shoulder injury.
What it means in fantasy: Fantasy managers will learn more about Fields’ status when the Bears release their first injury report on Wednesday. It would not be surprising if Fields missed the Bears’ Week 12 matchup with the Jets. David Montgomery would benefit from more rushing attempts if Fields were ruled out, but it would be difficult to trust Darnell Mooney and Cole Kmet with Trevor Siemian under center.
The news: Bengals WR Ja’Marr Chase is set to return to practice this week.
What it means in fantasy: Although this is great news, Bengals head coach Zac Taylor has not confirmed Chase’s return for Week 12 against the Titans. Chase missed the last three games with a hip injury, but is no longer using crutches. The team will release its first injury report of the week on Wednesday, which will provide more information about Chase’s status.
Going deeper: In the three games before the injury, Chase averaged 11 targets and 25.7 fantasy points.
The news: Rams QB Matthew Stafford is still being evaluated for a concussion.
What it means in fantasy: Stafford was having a solid performance after a one-game absence while in the league’s concussion protocol but left Sunday’s game against the Saints early to be evaluated for another concussion. Head coach Sean McVay said Monday afternoon that the Rams are still determining whether Stafford will return to concussion protocol. With a 3-7 record, Los Angeles has little reason to rush Stafford back after a concussion two weeks ago. There is a good chance that John Wolford or Bryce Perkins will start against the Chiefs in Week 12.
The news: Chiefs RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire suffered a high ankle sprain on Sunday against the Chargers.
What it means in fantasy: Whether Edwards-Helaire will be placed on injured reserve is unclear at this time. In Edwards-Helaire’s absence, the Chiefs are likely to give rookie Isiah Pacheco most of the rushing attempts. He became the first Chiefs running back to surpass 100 rushing yards this season by rushing for 107 yards on 15 carries against the Chargers. Kansas City’s upcoming schedule is very favorable for running backs, starting in Week 12, when Pacheco will sit firmly on the RB2 radar.
The news: ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the Falcons placed TE Kyle Pitts on injured reserve.
What it means in fantasy: Pitts’ MRI revealed a torn MCL, which is likely to require surgery. With Pitts on injured reserve, he’ll miss at least four games, and possibly more due to the nature of his injury. He also suffered a hamstring injury earlier this season. During Pitts’ absence, Atlanta could turn to tight ends Parker Hesse, MyCole Pruitt, Anthony Firkser and Feleipe Franks, who has been dealing with a calf injury. None of them are on the fantasy radar. With Marcus Mariota under center this season, the Falcons offense ranks fourth in the league with 32.8 rushing attempts per game, while Pitts has averaged 5.9 targets and 7.6 fantasy points.
The news: Jets head coach Robert Saleh did not commit to QB Zach Wilson as the starter against the Bears in Week 12.
What it means in fantasy: Wilson had one of the worst games in the league this season against the Patriots on Sunday. The Jets punted 10 times, which was the most punts by any team this season. Adding to the frustration, the 10th punt was returned for a touchdown. Wilson is 5-2 as the starter, but he has been atrocious in two of the last three games. On Sunday, Wilson completed nine of 22 passes for 77 yards, a career low. With a completion percentage of 55.6%, he ranks 23rd in total quarterback rating (45.2). In Week 12, neither Joe Flacco nor Mike White are attractive fantasy options.
The news: Panthers head coach Steve Wilks has not named a starting quarterback for Sunday’s game against the Broncos.
What it means in fantasy: Baker Mayfield started for the Panthers against the Broncos in Week 11 and he was suboptimal. He finished with a total quarterback rating of 20.2, slightly better than his league-low 15.3 rating over the first five games. It is also possible that Wilks will return to PJ Walker who was 2-3 as the starter before suffering a high ankle sprain last week, opening the door for Mayfield to start. There has been some talk in the Panthers organization that Sam Darnold might get a chance to start this season, according to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. Running back D’Onta Foreman is the only Carolina player fantasy managers can feel comfortable starting.
Going deeper: The Panthers rank 32nd in the league with 286.1 total yards per game and 25th with 18.8 points scored per game.
The news: Lions WR Jameson Williams is designated to return from injured reserve.
What it means in fantasy: Williams’ long-awaited NFL debut is near. The Lions’ 12th overall pick practiced Monday after rehabbing from the torn ACL he suffered during the College Football Playoff National Championship. Williams must undergo three weeks of practice before returning, which could have him return in Week 15 against the Jets. The Panthers, Bears, and Packers are fantasy-friendly matchups for the Lions in Weeks 16, 17 and 18 to close out the season. Williams is rostered in only 17.3% of ESPN leagues. Fantasy managers should stash him in deeper formats.
Going deeper: In 2021, Williams caught 79 passes for 1,572 yards and 15 touchdowns for the Crimson Tide. A first-team All-SEC selection, he led the SEC in receiving touchdowns.
Today on ESPN.com/Fantasy and in the ESPN Fantasy App
• Week 12 fantasy football rankings at every position (PPR and NPPR)
Matt Bowen’s streaming pickups: deeper picks for deeper leagues and emergency needs
Eric Karabell’s flex and superflex rankings for Week 12
• 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 12 and beyond
• Fantasy Focus podcast (10 a.m. ET)
Field Yate’s Fantasy Field Pass for Week 12
Mike Clay’s Thanksgiving Day Games Playbook
Mike Clay’s Shadow Report: wide receiver vs defensive back matchups analysis
Seth Walder’s Next Gen Stats Advantage: Mismatches to exploit
Tristan H. Cockcroft’s Positional Matchup Map
Matt Bowen’s fantasy film room
Al Zeidenfeld’s DFS Best Buys for Week 12
DFS Cheat sheets for DraftKings and FanDuel
• Rankings for Individual Defensive Player leagues
• Fantasy Focus podcast (10 a.m. ET)
In case you missed it:
• Eric Moody’s waiver wire pickups identify the top players to claim for your team
• Fantasy Focus podcast: Field Yates, Daniel Dopp and Liz Loza recap everything you need to know from Week 11 of the NFL season including what stars will help you down the stretch of the season. Plus, Liz and Daniel give an audio exclusive reaction to SNF including another clutch performance from Patrick Mahomes. The list | Watch