Fantasy Injury Updates: Frank Gore, Josh Jacobs, Ezekiel Elliott, more RBs impacting Week 14 start ’em, sit ’em decisions
It’s already been a bad week for RBs, as David Johnson and Myles Gaskin wound up on the COVID list, Antonio Gibson (toe) never really had a chance to play, and Christian McCaffrey (quad) is “doubtful” with his third different injury of the season. Justin Jackson (knee) is set to come off the IR, but key RBs Josh Jacobs, Ezekiel Elliott, Kenyan Drake, D’Andre Swift, and Frank Gore are all “questionable” ahead of the first round of the fantasy football playoffs. Given the importance of this win-or-go-home week, fantasy owners will undoubtedly be looking for updates through the day before locking in their start ’em, sit ’em decisions.
We’ll be updating below with the latest news, so check back to find out who’s officially active or inactive. For all the latest fantasy updates, follow us on Twitter @SN_Fantasy.
Is Frank Gore playing this week?
Gore (concussion) got in a full practice on Friday after Adam Gase said Thursday he expects Gore to be available for Sunday’s late-afternoon kickoff against the Seahawks.
If Gore is active, he’ll likely receive the bulk of the carries with Ty Johnson mixing in on obvious passing downs. Given Seattle’s strong run defense and the expected lopsided nature of the game, Gore is a risky play, but the Jets have given him significant volume all year when he’s started. He’ll get his chances and have some low-end flex value in standard leagues. If Gore is a surprise scratch, Johnson would have slightly more value thanks to his superior pass-catching ability.
Is Josh Jacobs playing this week?
Jacobs (ankle) got in limited practices on Thursday and Friday and is officially “questionable” for Sunday’s late-afternoon game against Indianapolis.
It seems Jacobs will wind up playing after looking doubtful at the beginning of the week. However, he’s unlikely to be 100 percent, and he could see his workload scaled back. It’s tough to sit someone as talented as Jacobs, especially against a Colts defense that has had some issues with running backs in recent weeks, so consider him a high-end flex/low-end RB2 in this matchup. If Jacobs is out, Devontae Booker would see 15-plus touches and have flex value in all formats.
Is Ezekiel Elliott playing this week?
Elliott (calf) was limited in practice all week, but that likely had more to do with Dallas’s wonky schedule (i.e. playing on Tuesday) than anything else. He’s officially “questionable” for Sunday’s early-afternoon kickoff in Cincinnati, but he’s fully expected to play.
Despite having just one TD since Week 5, Elliott is still getting enough volume to merit a starting spot against virtually anyone. Against Cincinnati’s No. 29 run defense, he could go off for one of his best games of the season. If Elliott is a surprise scratch, Tony Pollard would start and be worth using as an RB2.
Is Kenyan Drake playing this week?
Drake (hip) got in limited practices on Thursday and Friday, and there doesn’t seem to be any real worries about whether he’ll suit up for Arizona’s early-afternoon game against the Giants this week.
Even though the yardage hasn’t been consistent, Drake has scored in three straight games and has seven TDs in his past seven games. New York has a solid defense, but Drake remains a high-upside RB2. Chase Edmonds would start and be a low-end RB2/high-end flex if Drake is out.
Is D’Andre Swift playing this week?
Swift (illness) is “trending toward playing” this week against the Packers, according to interim coach Darrell Bevell, and assuming he does, it will be the first time he’s seen the field since suffering a concussion ahead of Week 10.
It’s worth noting that last week Bevell said Swift would have a “small package of plays” if he returned, so it’s possible the Lions might ease him back into action this week. That said, given the highly favorable matchup and Swift’s heavy volume before his injury, he’ll be tough to sit if he’s active. This is a late-afternoon game, so have viable alternatives ready if Swift is scratched. Adrian Peterson would dominate carries for the Lions if Swift is out, making him a borderline RB2 in this matchup.