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Ezekiel Elliott Fantasy Football News | Shark Bites

Shark Bites are the latest fantasy football news & NFL updates. Draft Sharks has been in business since 1999. And when we started, redraft was the dominant form of fantasy football. Check out what we've learned about this most basic form of fantasy football along the way.

Patriots RB Rhamondre Stevenson carried the ball 19 times for 59 yards in Week 3 vs. the Jets. By the contest’s end, Stevenson had just 1 catch on 4 targets for 3 yards. On Sunday, Teammate Ezekiel Elliott had some standalone value with 16 carries for 80 yards. This was a bit of a disappointing outing for Stevenson, though the weather and the fact that the Patriots led the way for most of the game justifies some of why Elliott was so involved. Next up for the duo is a Week 4 matchup vs. the Cowboys.

Patriots RB Rhamondre Stevenson bounced back in Week 2, recording 15 carries for 50 yards and a TD on the ground vs. the Dolphins. He also added 3 catches on as many targets for 10 yards as a receiver. Fantasy managers are assuredly glad to see this resurgent performance. Still, teammate Ezekiel Elliott is on the field and used an annoying amount of the time. The veteran logged 5 attempts for 13 yards and accounted for 33.3% of the backfield carries. We still like Stevenson in a tough matchup vs. the Jets in Week 3 regardless.

Patriots RB Rhamondre Stevenson managed just 25 yards on 12 carries against the Eagles Sunday. He made up for that (in PPR leagues, at least) with 6 catches for 64 yards on 6 targets. That marked just 11.1% target share among QB Mac Jones' 54 pass attempts. Elliott actually edged Stevenson with 7 targets, catching 5 for 14 yards. We'll see how the distribution looks in lower-volume games. Stevenson did get a solid 60% share of RB carries, with Ezekiel Elliott taking 7 and Ty Montgomery 1. Stevenson and the Patriots get an upside matchup with the Dolphins in Week 2. If Elliott maintains that kind of receiving share, he could be a standalone fantasy option in deeper leagues. But we'd like to see another game before boosting him to that level.

On Tuesday, ESPN's Mike Reiss tweeted that Patriots RB Ezekiel Elliott saw "a notable uptick in work" in practice behind starter Rhamondre Stevenson. Reiss specified that Elliott received increased usage as a pass-catcher out of the backfield. Granted, this is only one report. We don't want to overreact or make any big takeaways here. The former All-Pro saw a career-low 23 targets with the Cowboys last season and likely won't be too much of a threat to Stevenson in that department. That said, we'll keep an eye on future reports should Elliott continue being utilized as a pass-catcher in practice as it could cut into the point scoring ceiling of Stevenson. He fell a smidge in our PPR RB rankings following Zeke's signing, but we still feel confident Stevenson will be the clear RB1 in this offense. Check back for further updates as we get more information.

Patriots RBs Pierre Strong (concussion) and Ty Montgomery (leg) returned to practice on Tuesday. Strong isn’t yet cleared for full contact, per reporter Zack Cox. Montgomery sustained an undisclosed leg injury on day 2 of training camp. Neither guy is on the fantasy radar in standard-size leagues following the arrival of Zeke Elliott.

The Patriots are unsurprisingly happy so far to have RB Ezekiel Elliott on board. (Otherwise, why would they have signed him?) Coaches have praised his football intelligence and communication with new teammates. The most noteworthy comment, though, seems like OC Bill O'Brien telling ESPN's Mike Reiss, "I do think he's a three-down back." Elliott's receiving fell way off last year, from 2.8 receptions per game in 2021 to just 1.1 in 2022. He also saw the second-fewest pass-blocking reps of his career, according to Pro Football Focus, trailing only a 2017 season in which Elliott was suspended for six games. This might be a throwaway comment from O'Brien. We'd be shocked if New England actually treated Elliott like a challenger to Rhamondre Stevenson's pass-game snaps. But we'll also keep watching for specifics on the new old guy's role. There remains plenty of separation between Stevenson and Elliott in our 2023 PPR rankings.

The Patriots are set to sign RB Ezekiel Elliott to a one-year deal worth "up to" $6 million, NFL Network reports. We'll see about the actual details of the contract but doubt the base value is anywhere close to $6 million. Elliott's name is much bigger than his game at this point. The 28-year-old averaged a career-low 3.8 yards per carry last season, ranking 43rd among 48 qualifiers in NFL Next Gen Stats' Rush Yards Over Expected Per Attempt. His usage and production plummeted in the passing game, too. Elliott caught just 17 of 23 targets for 92 yards (5.4 YPC) and 0 TDs. The Patriots have been flirting with free-agent RBs for a while now -- seemingly in large part because depth RBs Pierre Strong and Kevin Harris have failed to emerge. The Elliott signing is more about those guys than lead RB Rhamondre Stevenson. Zeke's arrival adds some risk to Stevenson's 2023 fantasy outlook. But Stevenson was more effective by basically any metric last year -- as a runner and pass-catcher -- and should remain the Patriots' clear backfield leader. Elliott looks more like a Stevenson handcuff than standalone fantasy option. But we'll keep an eye on New England's plans.

Update: Per ESPN's Adam Schefter, the deal carries $3 million in base salary, $1 million in signing bonus, and incentives that can take it to $6 million.

The Cowboys remain “in the mix” to re-sign RB Ezekiel Elliott, per The Athletic’s Jeff Howe. New England, meanwhile, remains “highly interested” in the 28-year-old. Elliott, Leonard Fournette, and Kareem Hunt all remain free agents as of Monday afternoon.

Free agent RB Ezekiel Elliott reportedly visited the Patriots on Saturday, per multiple reports. The team hosted fellow free agent RB Leonard Fournette on July 18, and are rumored to be linked to Dalvin Cook as well. HC Bill Belichick and company seem keen on adding veteran depth to this backfield to accompany incumbent starter Rhamondre Stevenson. The more this possibility drifts toward reality, Stevenson looks like a potential fantasy loser just one year after recording career bests in touches (279), total touchdowns (six), and scrimmage yards (1,461). Though Elliott has slowed down in recent years, he's posted at least 230 carries in every season of his career dating back to 2016. How good the former All-Pro will be entering his age-28 season is its own matter. Regardless, we'll be sure to monitor this situation should any sort of deal materialize. See where each of these players appear in our current RB rankings.

The Cowboys have decided to release long-time former Pro Bowl RB Ezekiel Elliott after seven seasons spent with the franchise. This move will save the Cowboys $10.9 million in cap space. Elliott entered the league in 2016 and immediately led the league in rushing yards (1,631) as a rookie. For as good as the affectionately nicknamed Zeke has been as a pro, his production has seen a precipitous dropoff over time. 2022 saw Zeke post career lows in rushing yards per game (58.4), total touches (248), and PPR fantasy PPG (12.4). It's certainly feasible that Elliott can latch on somewhere as the hammer in a committee, but it's tough to imagine he'll have much of a market entering his age-28 season. This move does, however, free up RB Tony Pollard to take on the lead role in the Cowboys' backfield. The soon-to-be fifth-year back averaged 15.6 PPG en route to an RB8 overall finish in PPR in 2022. Whispers of the Cowboys' interest in Texas RB Bijan Robinson might put a damper on the prospective upside of Pollard. However, if the franchise opts to pair Pollard with another RB of lesser acclaim, he should have a highly productive season in 2023 and find himself well within the RB1 conversation. The absence of Elliott is now one hurdle cleared for Pollard, the RB16 in our dynasty rankings.

As expected, the Cowboys are applying the franchise tag to RB Tony Pollard. That will cost the team $10.1 million on a one-year deal, if the two sides can't agree to a longer-term contract before the July 15 deadline. Pollard's anxiously anticipated breakout this past season made Dallas' move inevitable. There is still some question about whether the team also keeps RB Ezekiel Elliott around. Cowboys leadership has spoken as though that's the plan. And HC Mike McCarthy intimated in February that he split with former OC Kellen Moore because McCarthy wants a more run-leaning offense. The ankle injury that knocked Pollard out of the playoff loss to San Francisco isn't expected to affect his 2023 availability or contract negotiations with the Cowboys. You'll have to pay up if you want to draft him, though. Pollard's already going 13th among RBs in best ball ADP.

The Athletic's Bob Sturm writes that the consensus opinion from analysts and scouts is that Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott "has very little left in his legs." Zeke isn't even 28 yet but has amassed well over 2,000 touches through 7 NFL seasons. He posted career lows this past year in yards per carry (3.8) and yards per catch (5.4), while ranking outside the top 30 RBs in Pro Football Focus' rushing and receiving grades. The Cowboys are reportedly hoping to get Elliott to agree to a pay cut to stick around for 2023. We'll see how that plays out over the next few weeks. Elliott is cheap in early best-ball drafts, with a current Underdog ADP of RB37. But he's not an exciting pick even at that price point.

Pro Football Network's Tony Pauline hears that the Cowboys are looking to keep both RB Ezekiel Elliott and RB Tony Pollard on the team for 2023. The plan is to get Elliott to agree to a pay cut from the $16.7 million he's currently scheduled to make this upcoming season and then use the franchise tag on Pollard, which would pay him a little over $10 million in 2023. Elliott and Pollard split backfield work basically down the middle this past year, with Zeke averaging 15.4 carries and 1.5 targets per game to Pollard's 12.1 carries and 3.4 targets. Both guys' fantasy ceilings would be capped if they remain together in Dallas.

The Cowboys named Brian Schottenheimer their new OC. He spent this past season in Dallas as an offensive consultant. HC Mike McCarthy is expected to take over play-calling duties from the departed Kellen Moore, so we're not sure Schottenheimer's role will change much in 2023. He does have 12 seasons of experience as an NFL OC, most recently from 2018-2020 with the Seahawks. Those were run-leaning attacks, with 2 of the 3 finishing top 3 in rushing attempts.

Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott tallied 26 yards on 10 carries in Sunday's Divisional Round loss vs. the 49ers. It's difficult to project the veteran's future fantasy value looking ahead into 2023. Elliott has seen his average rushing yards per game drop year-over-year and concluded this season at a career-low 58.4 in 15 games. The Cowboys have an out in Elliott's contract with an $11.86 million dead cap hit that would enable them to move on if they choose to. That may sound like a lot of money to cut, but it's certainly a cheaper option than paying Elliott an average of around $16 million a year for the next 4 seasons. There's also the difficult situation of the franchise figuring out what to do with upcoming free agent RB Tony Pollard, who left Sunday's game with a fractured left fibula in the 2nd quarter. This will certainly be a backfield to watch in the coming months.

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