Fantasy Football Updates: Baker Mayfield, Tyrod Taylor, Carson Wentz, Josh Gordon, more | Sporting News Canada

Fantasy Football Updates: Baker Mayfield, Tyrod Taylor, Carson Wentz, Josh Gordon, more

Written By Jacob Camenker

The Browns have two players vying for the starting QB job, and both suffered injuries in Thursday's preseason contest; Carson Wentz and Josh Gordon are still questionable for Week 1 as they try to return to their teams; Jordan Howard appears to be working into a bigger role with the Bears offense; and Rishard Matthews may finally be returning to the Titans after dealing with a mysterious injury. There are a lot of NFL updates today, and it's important that you keep pace with all of them and update your cheat sheet and rankings ahead of one of the biggest fantasy draft weekends of 2018.

We'll be analyzing the most important news and updates leading up to Week 1, so check back and follow us on Twitter @SN_Fantasy.

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We'll also be updating all of our rankings, including our our top 200, throughout the rest of the preseason.

DOMINATE YOUR DRAFT: Ultimate 2018 Fantasy Cheat Sheet

Tyrod Taylor, Baker Mayfield injury updates

Both Browns QBs suffered injuries in the third preseason game, but both appear to be okay. Taylor suffered a wrist injury in the first half after falling and landing awkwardly on his non-throwing hand while drifting out of bounds. Taylor originally left the field in pain, but he would later return after missing two series. While putting him back into a preseason contest was a questionable decision, the fact that he was able to return demonstrates that he should have a good chance to be the Week 1 starter (and one of our fantasy QB sleepers) as the Browns turn to an experienced, veteran option to lead their offense.

Meanwhile, Mayfield was evaluated for a concussion after throwing an interception and taking a big hit. According to Mary Kay Cabot of, Mayfield was cleared by the test. That said, he didn't return to action in a move that was likely more precautionary than anything else.

Since neither player appears to be out long term, at least at the moment, it seems probable that Taylor will hold onto the starting QB job at least to begin the year. So, both men will stay put in our QB rankings and that won't change until Mayfield is given a vote of confidence as the potential starting quarterback.

Is Carson Wentz playing Week 1?

This is going to be the question that many are hoping to have answered before this weekend. Unfortunately, it seems highly unlikely that the Eagles will know until very close to the start of the season. Before Thursday night's game against the Browns, Wentz drew some attention for stumbling during his workout, as seen in this video captured by Jimmy Kempski of The Philly Voice, but that's just one tiny warmup play that shouldn't tell us much about Wentz's overall health.

With Wentz's availability uncertain, Nick Foles is becoming more of a fantasy factor. Foles isn't a guy to have on your team, but if he starts, his performance could impact the value of other Philly weapons. Given how dreadful Foles look in the preseason contest against the Browns, the Eagles players don't appear to be a safe bet in fantasy at the moment. With so many skill position weapons dealing with injuries, Wentz possibly out, and Foles struggling, the Eagles deserve a minor downgrade in most formats. That said, be ready to pounce on them early in the season as buy-low candidates should Foles be forced to start and struggle to begin the season.

Quarterback | Running back | Wide Receiver | Tight End | D/ST | Kicker | Top 200 | PPR

Josh Gordon update

Gordon has returned to the Browns but is currently on the Non-Football Injury (NFI) list. This makes sense as the team is looking to make sure that he's in football shape before just throwing him onto the field. 

Per ESPN News Services, Hue Jackson is expecting Gordon to return to the practice field "very soon." That's a good sign for his value as a fantasy contributor, but there also are some concerns that he may not be a full-time starter to begin the year. While Gordon is the most talented receiver on the Browns squad, the team may ease him into the lineup and give Jarvis Landry, Antonio Callaway, and Rashard Higgins a chance to continue on in larger roles while Gordon continues to develop chemistry with Taylor and Mayfield. While that may not take too long, it's still worth noting that Gordon may not see as high a snap count as we're used to seeing in the early stages of the season. That could drive his value down a bit.

It's also entirely possible that Gordon gets on the practice field, blows the coaches away, and basically forces them to use him as a starter. Either way, Gordon should have a very good season provided that he can stay on the field, and that's why he's highly rated in our WR rankings.

Jordan Howard news

According to Brad Biggs of The Chicago Tribune, Matt Nagy is planning on using Jordan Howard on all three downs this season. While many expected scat-back Tarik Cohen to steal touches from Howard in Nagy's offense, it appears that the first-year head coach is willing to trust Howard as an every-down back, and that could help to make him a bit more effective and consistent.

Howard hasn't been a great pass catcher throughout his career, as he has struggled badly with drops (14 over the course of two seasons). If he makes improvements in that area, his role will be less predictable when on the field, and that could lead him to become more productive, as defenses won't automatically know that he's on the field to run the ball. This could give him a minor bump up, but we still like him best as an RB2, as reflected in our RB rankings.

Rishard Matthews injury update

Per the Titans official website, head coach Mike Vrabel indicated that Matthews was "close" to rejoining the team off the PUP list. Matthews, who was dealing with a torn meniscus according to Paul Kuharsky, should have a good chance to return to the team before Week 1, but he will have to work his way back into the starting rotation.

Matthews seems likely to slot in with Corey Davis and Taywan Taylor on offense. Taylor may have overtaken Matthews as the de facto No. 2 receiver, but Matthews can still be a threat as an inside/outside veteran with proven production. Matthews can be targeted late in fantasy drafts, and he could end up being a steal, especially in PPR formats.

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