Show Navigation
Show Menu

Russell Wilson 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.

It was reported when the Steelers traded for QB Justin Fields that he was coming in to back up QB Russell Wilson. HC Mike Tomlin clarified the situation over the weekend, calling Wilson the favorite for the starting job but adding that Fields is in the mix, too. "When it's time to compete, Justin will given an opportunity to compete," Tomlin said. "But I thought it was appropriate to describe it in a way for when we get started. Russell's in pole position, and I think his body of work justifies that." Wilson was decent last year, completing 66.4% of his passes, averaging 6.9 yards per attempt, and ranking 19th among 30 qualifiers in Pro Football Focus' passing grades. It's certainly possible that he plays well enough throughout 2024 to keep Fields on the bench. But fantasy drafters should not be treating Wilson as a locked-in starter at this point. Fields, meanwhile, is tough to spend a pick on in early best-ball drafts. But this could be a nice time to buy low in dynasty leagues.

The Bears are sending QB Justin Fields to the Steelers for a low-level draft pick. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Chicago gets only a sixth-rounder in 2025 that will become a fourth-rounder if he plays at least 51% of Pittsburgh's offensive snaps this year. NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports that a source told him "Russ is the starter." That, of course, refers to Russell Wilson, also recently acquired. It's a steep fall for Fields but a decent landing, behind a 35-year-old starter in clear decline. Fields is also unlikely to have his fifth-year option picked up this offseason. So we're betting he'll hit unrestricted free agency ahead of the 2025 season. We'll see about Fields' status at that point. For now, hold him if you can in dynasty -- just in case he finds a starting opportunity this year. We've seen that Fields can deliver fantasy points even while playing iffy-to-poor football. But Fields isn't a must-hold in shallower formats.

The Steelers traded QB Kenny Pickett and the 120th overall pick of this spring's draft to the Eagles in exchange for pick No. 98 and a pair of 2025 seventh-rounders, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. Pickett wanted out of Pittsburgh after the arrival of QB Russell Wilson, according to Schefter. So Pickett goes from Wilson's backup ... to Jalen Hurts' backup. He still has two years left on his current contract, so it'll be at least 2026 before Pickett has a chance to sniff a starting job. Considering his lackluster play in Pittsburgh, it's more likely that Pickett settles in as a career backup.

The Panthers acquired WR Diontae Johnson and a seventh-round pick from the Steelers in exchange for CB Donte Jackson and a sixth-rounder, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports. It's a relatively cheap price to pay for a guy with 332 catches over the past four seasons. Johnson's production has largely been volume-based, though. His 6.7 yards per target over those last four years ranks 67th among 71 WRs with 200+ total targets during that stretch. Johnson didn't rank better 23rd in yards per route in any of those seasons. That said, he immediately becomes the Panthers' clear No. 1 WR. And Carolina figures to throw it a bunch more than the Arthur Smith-led Steelers. QB play is a concern, of course, after Bryce Young's ugly rookie season. But the move is still a win for Johnson's 2024 fantasy value. In Pittsburgh, meanwhile, George Pickens will likely get a crack at No. 1 WR duties. The Steelers will certainly be adding to the WR corps this offseason, though. And Arthur Smith's run-heavy offense will keep Pickens' upside capped.

QB Russell Wilson announced late Sunday night that he'll be signing with the Steelers after his release from Denver becomes official. The vet will be signing for just $1.2 million, thanks to the Broncos being on the hook for about $39 million. That Pittsburgh number is far from guaranteed-starter money. But Wilson's quick decision on the Steelers almost certainly means they guaranteed him at least a chance to compete for the starting job. If Wilson can't beat out Kenny Pickett this summer, it'd be either the worst sign yet for his career or a huge step forward for Pickett. We'll head toward summer assuming Wilson will emerge as the starter. The landing spot, though, isn't exciting for his fantasy outlook. And Wilson's arrival -- after the way he performed the past two years -- doesn't elevate Pittsburgh's pass-catchers.

As expected, the Broncos are releasing QB Russell Wilson. The team will endure large cap hits this year and next but avoid having to pay Wilson in 2025. He remained decent last year, rebounding vs. 2022 in most stat categories. But it clearly wasn't good enough for the Broncos, who turned to Jarrett Stidham to start the final two games. We'd bet on the 35-year-old Wilson landing another starting gig -- or at least a chance to compete for a starting gig. Denver, meanwhile, has to find a new answer. Stidham has never looked like a long-term NFL starter. The Broncos pick 12th in the upcoming NFL Draft, which might prove too late for any of the top four QBs. We wouldn't be surprised to see Denver try to move up. The values of WR Courtland Sutton, WR Jerry Jeudy, WR Marvin Mims, TE Greg Dulcich, and others will depend heavily on that QB decision.

Dianna Russini of The Athletic reports that Broncos QB Russell Wilson expects to be cut in March. Wilson has reportedly known for nearly two months that Denver planned to move on after the season. The team reportedly told him a benching would come at some point if he refused to defer the injury guarantee that's been reported as a key to Wilson's benching. Clearly he refused. Wilson has played better than last year. And at 35, he's likely to find another home. Will he get another starting gig? We'll see. The Broncos, meanwhile, have no long-term answer. (It's not Jarrett Stidham.) They currently hold the 14th overall pick in Round 1, then no Round 2 selection.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that the Broncos will be benching QB Russell Wilson in favor of Jarrett Stidham for the season's final two games. You might remember Stidham playing the same role last year for the Raiders, who benched Derek Carr. And the reasoning on Wilson looks the same. Wilson is already guaranteed $39 million for 2024, but another $37 million would become guaranteed if Wilson can't pass a physical in March. So the Broncos don't appear to be done with Wilson like the Raiders were with Carr. Rather, they're trying to maintain some "financial flexibility," according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Even if they'd like to trade Wilson, his contract basically prevents such a move. According to Spotrac, Denver would absorb $85 million in dead cap by unloading Wilson. So expect him to be the 2024 starter. As for the final two weeks of this year, Stidham will likely present a passing downgrade. WR Courtland Sutton has been just about the only usable piece for most fantasy football leagues lately, though. His injury leaves Jerry Jeudy as the expected Week 17 target leader. You'll find him low in WR3 territory in our Week 17 rankings.

It took a while for QB Russell Wilson and the Broncos offense to get rolling in Chicago. He hit halftime with just 88 passing yards and one TD. But, down 21 to 7, Denver went pass-heavy in the second half. Wilson delivered another 135 yards and two scores, leading the Broncos to a 31 to 28 comeback win. It hasn't always been pretty, but Wilson has averaged 254 yards and 2.3 TDs per game through the first four weeks. He's playing reasonably well -- and Denver's awful defense is creating shootout environments. Wilson won't be a recommended QB1 vs. the Jets in Week 5. But the next three weeks bring doable matchup vs. the Chiefs, Packers, and Chiefs again.

Broncos QB Russell Wilson played OK in his first game under new HC Sean Payton. He was efficient but conservative, completing 79.4% of his passes at only 5.2 yards per attempt. He didn't turn it over and tossed TDs to WRs Courtland Sutton and Lil'Jordan Humphrey. Wilson spread the ball around to 10 different pass-catchers, with none of them catching more than five balls. He was playing without WR Jerry Jeudy and lost TE Greg Dulcich in-game to a leg injury. We'll see when those guys return, but don't expect to see Wilson close to the top 12 in our Week 2 Rankings in a matchup vs. the Commanders.

Broncos QB Russell Wilson is off to a “slow start” in training camp, per team insider Troy Renck. He’s committed multiple turnovers in practice, but HC Sean Payton isn’t deterred. "He’s doing fine," Payton said. “We are in an installation pattern. As we install, sometimes we put a play in, and it doesn’t really match, and we wouldn’t run it if we were playing Denver’s defense. Throughout this training camp and preseason, you will see things we do well and some things we don’t feel as comfortable about. So, you are constantly building that memory bank of what we are seeing and how we are executing it.” Wilson and the Broncos open the season vs. Las Vegas on September 10.

"A trimmed down Russell Wilson hinted that we are going to see him move around more this season and use his legs more frequently," NFL Network's James Palmer says. He adds that HC Sean Payton is encouraging it and believes "it's still a strength" for the 34-year-old QB. Wilson posted his fewest (13.1) and third-fewest (18.5) rushing yards per game the past two seasons. Although Palmer's report doesn't specifically speak to Wilson rushing for yardage, pursuing mobility more often should help that area. And any rushing boost would help Wilson's fantasy floor and ceiling. He's going at a low-risk, all-reward level in fantasy football drafts so far. See where Wilson sits in our 2023 QB rankings.

Broncos HC Sean Payton fully believes that QB Russell Wilson will bounce back this year. “He’s still got gas in the tank," Payton said, blaming Denver's ugly 2022 season on the previous regime. “There’s so much dirt around that. There’s 20 dirty hands, for what was allowed, tolerated in the fricking training rooms, the meeting rooms. The offense. I don’t know [former HC Nathaniel] Hackett. A lot of people had dirt on their hands. It wasn’t just Russell. He didn’t just flip. He still has it. This B.S. that he hit a wall? Shoot, they couldn’t get a play in. They were 29th in the league in pre-snap penalties on both sides of the ball.” On top of what should be a much-improved coaching staff, the Broncos also bolstered their offensive line with the additions of Mike McGlinchey and Ben Powers. And the pass-catching corps remains strong. In short, all the pieces are in place for a Wilson bounce back.

Broncos QB Russell Wilson is coming off a tough 2022. He averaged just 235 passing yards and 1.1 TDs across his 15 games and posted career lows in completion rate, PFF passing grade, and his 7.3 yards per attempt was his second-worst mark among 11 NFL seasons. But don’t forget about how much the Broncos improved this offseason. The team spent big money on RT Mike McGlinchey and LG Ben Powers in free agency and brought in former Saints HC Sean Payton to help right the ship. Plus, fantasy managers did see a slight bounce back from Wilson after the team fired HC Nathaniel Hackett, averaging 24.9 fantasy points per game between Week 17-18. We feel that Wilson can be a quality QB2 in lineups this season. See where he comes out in our current QB rankings.

Broncos WR Jerry Jeudy missed two full games and most of three others with injuries last year. But in the other 12, he averaged 7.7 targets, 5.2 catches, 74.7 yards, and 0.5 TDs. His scoring averages in those games would have ranked 13th among WRs in PPR points and 14th in half-PPR. Jeudy also ranked seventh among 80 qualifying WRs in yards per target and 12th in yards per route. He's improved in both of those metrics across each of his first three NFL seasons. Still just 24, Jeudy should still be ascending. And he gets a significant coaching upgrade this season with HC Sean Payton replacing Nathaniel Hackett. If QB Russell Wilson can bounce back from an ugly 2022, Jeudy is primed for a true breakout season.

NFL Network's James Palmer had "multiple people" in the Broncos organization tell him that Tim Patrick is "the best football player in that WR room." That WR room also includes Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton, and second-round rookie Marvin Mims. QB Russell Wilson felt most comfortable throwing to Patrick last offseason, per Palmer. And the belief (hope?) is that Patrick's August torn ACL played a big part in Wilson's ugly 2022 season. Patrick is on track to be ready for Week 1, which is good news for Wilson. But it's tough to see Patrick emerging as a reliable fantasy option barring an injury to Jeudy or Sutton. Patrick is at least worth considering near the end of best-ball drafts.

Broncos QB Russell Wilson underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee earlier this offseason, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. The procedure addressed an issue "that had nagged [Wilson] for a few seasons," per Rapoport. Wilson has already resumed training since the surgery and is expected to be available for OTAs. We'll keep an eye on him the rest of the offseason, but it doesn't sound like this news will impact Wilson's 2023 campaign. The 34-year-old has missed five games over the last two years after playing in 144 straight regular-season games to open his career.

Free agent QB Jarrett Stidham and the Broncos have agreed to terms on a two-year contract worth $10 million. This deal includes $5 million in guaranteed money and locks Stidham into serving as QB Russell Wilson's backup. Stidham started two games with the Raiders at the conclusion of the 2022 NFL season, tallying 584 passing yards with 4 TDs and 3 INTs. He should carry some appeal as a depth option in superflex leagues should any injury occur to Wilson in what should be a much-improved offense under new HC Sean Payton. Not all backup QBs are worth spending too much time thinking about for fantasy purposes, but Stidham is fairly intriguing here if nothing else.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that the Broncos and Saints are "finalizing compensation" that would allow Sean Payton to become Denver's HC. The big potential winner here, fantasy wise, is QB Russell Wilson. He'll come off easily the worst performance of his career to work with the HC that helped Drew Brees become Drew Brees in New Orleans. Of course, Brees was just 27 in his 1st season with New Orleans, after the Chargers allowed his rookie contract to expire and Brees to hit the open market. Russell Wilson just completed his age-34 season. Plenty of surrounding talent should remain, with WRs Courtland Sutton and Jerry Jeudy still under contract, TE Greg Dulcich entering Year 2, and WR Tim Patrick and RB Javonte returning from knee injuries. Among his 15 years as Saints HC, Payton had 13 consecutive offenses rank among the top 10 in total yards. His teams also finished top-10 in points 12 times.

Update: Schefter reports that Denver is sending its 2023 first-rounder and 2024 second-rounder to the Saints for the rights to Payton and New Orleans' 2024 third-rounder.

Compare Plans » Compare Plans »