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Austin Ekeler Fantasy Football News | Shark Bites

Fantasy Football News 2024

Most Recent Fantasy Football News & Updates

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler led the NFL with 18 total TDs last season. It's tough to bank on that level of TD production again in 2023. But Ekeler's usage suggests that he might not regress much. He tied for sixth league-wide with 24 carries inside the 10-yard line AND ranked third with 13 targets inside the 10-yard line last year. He registered 15.3 expected TDs -- meaning that Ekeler only slightly out-produced his usage. He should play a similar role this season. And the Chargers offense could be even better under new OC Kellen Moore. It all makes Ekeler one of 2023's best TD bets. See exactly how many scores we project him for this season.

The Chargers “remain high” on RB Isaiah Spiller, per The Athletic’s Daniel Popper. It’s not shocking since Spiller arrived in Round 4 just one year ago. He battled an August ankle injury and never locked down the RB2 job behind Austin Ekeler. Across six games, Spiller posted only 41 yards on 18 carries. We’ll see if the Chargers add a veteran RB over the coming weeks. Even if they pass, Spiller must beat out Josh Kelley for the backup job.

A contract adjustment seems to be ending the offseason tumult for Chargers RB Austin Ekeler. ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that the team is adding "close to $2 million in incentives" to the final year of Ekeler's contract and that the RB is "staying." Ekeler, of course, requested a trade earlier this offseason over discontent with his contract. He's still set to hit free agency next March. But there should now be no question about Ekeler's 2023 status. His ADP slipped some through the dispute, but Ekeler never got consistently outside of Round 1 in best ball drafting. He sits well within that range in our 2023 fantasy football rankings.

The Chargers have granted RB Austin Ekeler permission to seek a trade, according to his agent. Ekeler and the Chargers haven't made much progress on extension talks, leading to the possibility of a split. Ekeler has 1 year left on his current deal at a very reasonable $7.75 million cap hit. He remained a fantasy monster last year, catching a career-high 107 passes and scoring 18 TDs. Ekeler earned a career-best 83.2 Pro Football Focus rushing grade (13th among 42 qualifiers) and ranked 3rd among 43 qualifiers in PFF receiving grade. It's tough to imagine a move out of Los Angeles helping his fantasy value -- but we also wouldn't expect a significant hit.

The Chargers are set to hire Kellen Moore as their new OC, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero. Although we just learned that Moore was done in Dallas on Sunday, the Chargers had been working on this hire "for a while," per Rapoport. It's a great get for QB Justin Herbert and Co. Moore helped the Cowboys to top-11 finishes in both points and total yards in 3 of his 4 seasons -- with the only exception being 2020, when QB Dak Prescott missed most of the year. That included a 1st-place finish in both points and yards in 2021. Moore's Dallas offenses were balanced to run-leaning in terms of Pass Rate Over Expected, although he certainly seems willing to adjust his play calling to the personnel. Moore also deploys a fast-paced attack, with the Cowboys ranking top 4 in both pace and situation-neutral pace in all 4 of his seasons.

The Chargers have fired OC Joe Lombardi, according to NFL Network. Lombardi piloted Los Angeles to top 9 finishes in total yards in each of the past 2 seasons, despite dealing with a bunch of injuries to offensive linemen and skill-position players. But his scheme simply didn't accentuate QB Justin Herbert's arm talent, as evidenced by his 7.6 and 6.4 intended air yards per pass attempt marks over the last 2 years. That 6.4-yard mark this past season ranked 31st among 33 qualifiers. We'll see who the Chargers tab to replace Lombardi -- but the change is more likely than not to be good news for Herbert's fantasy value.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler capped off his age 27-season with 13 carries for 35 yards and 2 scores. Credit the Jags for filling up rushing lanes — and limiting Ekeler to only 2 catches for 8 yards (4 targets). A TD machine with 40 scores over the past 2 seasons, Ekeler is now scheduled to enter the final year of his second contract. Change could be coming to the Chargers’ coaching staff, but there's no reason to alter RB1 expectations for 2023.

If the Bengals beat the Ravens -- and they're currently 7-point favorites -- in the early slate of games on Sunday, the Chargers will clinch the AFC's #5 seed and have nothing to play for vs. the Broncos in the late slate. And it sure sounds like there's a chance that HC Brandon Staley will rest starters in that case. "Once we find out about that game, then we'll make the appropriate decisions moving forward," Staley said Wednesday. The Chargers are notably 2.5-point underdogs right now, suggesting the oddsmakers are at least baking in some chance of starters not playing. We'll continue to keep an eye on the situation, but guys like QB Justin Herbert, RB Austin Ekeler and WRs Keenan Allen and Mike Williams carry elevated risk in Week 18 fantasy lineups.

Chargers HC Brandon Staley plans to play starters in Sunday's game vs. the Broncos. A win would lock up the AFC's #5 seed for the Chargers, meaning a Round 1 game vs. the Jaguars or Titans. A loss would open the door for the Ravens to take the #5 seed with a win over the Bengals. That'd push the Chargers down to #6 and mean a Round 1 game vs. Cincinnati. “Our approach is definitely going to get shot to win this ballgame and play as well as we can play heading into the playoffs,” Staley said. “I think that there’s certainly an advantage to be in the No. 5-seed, from where I stand, so we’re going to try and get there.” Staley did add that he'd consider sitting banged-up players. But, as of now, we're projecting full playing time for QB Justin Herbert, RB Austin Ekeler and WRs Keenan Allen and Mike Williams.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler ran for 122 yards and 2 TDs in Sunday's win over the Rams. Ekeler carried just 10 times for the game, adding 4 catches for 39 yards. The team also mixed in RB Joshua Kelley for 9 carries and RB Larry Rountree for 10. Rountree's use came in the 2nd half, perhaps motivated by a knee issue that limited Ekeler to start the practice week. The Chargers finish the regular season at Denver. Ekeler went for limited yardage -- 83 total on 14 carries and 16 targets -- in the 1st meeting. That came back in Week 6, though, against a much different Broncos defense.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler (knee) fully participated in practice on Friday and doesn't carry an injury tag for Week 17 vs. the Rams. The Chargers have already clinched a playoff berth and don't have a ton to play for this week. As such, we can't really say how much involvement Ekeler or the other key starters will have vs. the Rams. But unless we have reason to believe his work will be limited, fantasy managers can trust Ekeler as a bonafide RB1 as they have all season. Keep your ear to the ground for any whispers to suggest he'll be lightly utilized just in case.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler (knee) logged limited participation again on Thursday. A full practice on Friday would inspire hope for the veteran's ability to play in Week 17 vs. the Rams. We'll check back in on this tomorrow in case something changes.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler (knee) was listed as a limited practice participant on Wednesday. Check back tomorrow for updates regarding his status ahead of Week 17 vs. the Rams.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler scored both of his team's TDs in Monday night's win over the Colts. He logged his 2nd most carries of the season (18) for 67 yards (3.7 per rush), adding 4 catches for 12 yards among 4 targets. RB Joshua Kelley chimed in 9 carries for 33 yards and a 9-yard reception. Ekeler has now drawn double-digit carries in 4 straight games, the 1st stretch this year that has seen him do so. A Week 17 meeting with the Rams holds a defense that has played the run tougher than the pass, but that has been true of the past 3 opponents as well. Ekeler, of course, shouldn't be a candidate to sit out of your Week 17 fantasy football lineups.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler managed just 70 total yards in Sunday's win over the Titans, his 3rd-lowest number of the season. Ekeler ran with solid efficiency -- 4.8 yards per rush (12 carries, 58 yards) -- especially considering that he was facing the league's #1 run defense Football Outsiders' DVOA. Ekeler added just 12 yards on 2 catches, though, uncharacteristically low for him. He did leave the game briefly for an injury check but wound up playing 69% of the snaps (according to Pro Football Focus), right in line with his usual playing time. Ekeler and RB Joshua Kelley each scored rushing TDs, as Kelley ran 10 times for 24 yards. Week 16 holds a Monday night trip to Indy, which allowed Vikings RB Dalvin Cook 190 total yards on Saturday night.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler has averaged 7.2 catches per game for the season, 6th highest in the league. That rate has climbed to 7.8 per contest over the past 8 games. That aspect is what keeps him high in our Week 15 fantasy football rankings, in spite of facing a Tennessee defense that ranks #1 in Football Outsiders' run-defense DVOA.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler managed only 35 yards on 10 carries in Sunday's matchup with a soft Raiders defense. It marked his 3rd outing among the past 4 games and 5th among the past 7 with less than 40 rushing yards. As usual, Ekeler made up for it with 67 yards on 5 receptions (among 6 targets). He did not find the end zone in a game that included just 1 offensive TD for his team. RB Joshua Kelley added 30 yards on 7 carries as the only other RB contributor.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler racked up 15 targets and 11 catches in Sunday's late win over the Cardinals, snagging a 1-yard TD with 15 seconds left that set up the game-winning 2-point conversion. Ekeler needed that receiving production to make up for a mere 5-20 rushing line. Joshua Kelley and Isaiah Spiller carried 2 times apiece and combined for 4 targets. It was Kelley's 1st game since a Week 6 knee injury landed him on IR. Kelley played 6 more snaps than Spiller but also less than one-third of Ekeler's total. Next comes a generous Raiders D.

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