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Washington Commanders 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.

Chargers RB Austin Ekeler came away from Sunday's loss to the Dolphins with an ankle injury, NFL Network's Bridget Condon reports. HC Brandon Staley said Monday the RB's status is uncertain for Wednesday's practice. We'll obviously be tracking the situation closely throughout the week. RB Joshua Kelley ran even with Ekeler in carries against Miami. He'd likely land inside our top 24 if Ekeler can't go, though the Tennessee matchup was negative for rushers all last season and in Week 1 of this year. (Saints RB Jamaal Williams gained just 45 yards on 18 carries.) The team would also likely activate RB Isaiah Spiller, a healthy scratch in the opener.

Fantasy owners have no reason to complain about Austin Ekeler’s Week 1. He posted 26.4 PPR points on 20 touches, powered by one score and a sweet 55-yard run up the gut. He could have had even more, though. Justin Herbert scored on the ground from one yard out. Ekeler also watched Josh Kelley score from 2 yards out and handle 16 carries. New OC Kellen Moore seems to favor a rotation, but we’re far from concerned about Ekeler’s season-long outlook. He remains a high-end RB1.

Commanders WR Terry McLaurin (turf toe) landed just 2 catches on 6 targets for 31 receiving yards in Sunday’s win vs. the Cardinals. Teammate Curtis Samuel led the team in receiving with 54 yards and a perfect 5-for-5 on his targets. McLaurin has dealt with this toe injury dating back to the preseason and practiced in a limited fashion for much of this week. It’s no surprise he got out-targeted by WR Jahan Dotson (5 for 40 yards on 7 targets) in Week 1, though we expect McLaurin’s impact to increase as he becomes further removed from the ailment. An underrated takeaway to consider before their Week 2 matchup vs. the Broncos is that TE Logan Thomas led the Commanders with 8 targets in this game—something to remember for those in deeper leagues.

Commanders RB Brian Robinson recorded 76% of the team’s backfield carries with 19 attempts for 59 rushing yards in Week 1’s victory over the Cardinals. Teammate RB Antonio Gibson saw 3 carries for 9 yards and added a single catch for 10 yards before a costly fumble saw him evaporate from the game. There are few things NFL coaches hate more than fumbles, and he paid dearly for it by being replaced by rookie RB Chris Rodriguez to end the contest. Fantasy managers will have a better idea of what the RB workshare split looks like in Week 2 vs. the Broncos, though it will be tough to bet against Robinson being the favorite Commanders’ back next Sunday.

Cardinals TE Zach Ertz led the team with 10 targets in Sunday’s loss vs. the Commanders, hauling in 6 catches for 21 yards. WRs Marquise Brown and Rondale Moore each saw 3 catches for 28 yards and 33 yards, respectively. Hopes for this Arizona offense aren’t particularly high as QB Kyler Murray continues to work his way back from a torn ACL. Still, a 33.3% target share from Ertz is a remarkable feat worth remembering for those in need of TE help out on the waiver wire. We’ll see if this usage continues in Week 2 vs. the Rams.

11:33am EDT 9/10/23

Cardinals TE Zach Ertz (knee) is active for today’s game vs. the Commanders. It marks an impressive return from last November’s torn ACL and MCL. We’d be surprised if Ertz was ready for a full slate of snaps, though. He’s not a viable Week 1 fantasy play.

Cardinals TE Zach Ertz (knee) is expected to play vs. the Commanders today, per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. It'll be Ertz's first game action since November's multi-ligament knee injury. Ertz is not a viable Week 1 fantasy play. His presence should also knock TE Trey McBride out of fantasy consideration.

Cardinals TE Zach Ertz (knee) is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game vs. the Commanders. He was limited in practice all week, after being activated from the PUP list in mid-August off his November ACL and MCL tears. Ertz should not be in your Week 1 fantasy plans. His absence would be a boost to TE Trey McBride’s fantasy value.

Commanders WR Terry McLaurin (toe) is not listed on the final Week 1 injury report. He practiced all week, including full practices on Thursday and Friday. So it looks like McLaurin will be ready to play his usual role vs. the Cardinals this weekend.

Commanders WR Terry McLaurin (toe) was upgraded to full participation in Thursday's practice. He'll play vs. the Cardinals this weekend -- and will seemingly be at least close to 100%.

Commanders WR Terry McLaurin (toe) was a limited participant in Wednesday's practice. Getting on the field at all early in the week seemingly gives him a good shot to play vs. the Cardinals on Sunday. We'll track his progress over the next couple of days.

Cardinals TE Zach Ertz (knee) was limited in Wednesday's practice. He was activated from the PUP list about three weeks ago, but it's still unclear if he'll play in the season opener vs. Washington on Sunday. Ertz should not be in your Week 1 fantasy plans. His absence would make TE Trey McBride a slightly more appealing play.

CBS Sports' Jonathan Jones tweets that the Commanders are "optimistic" about WR Terry McLaurin (toe). We're not sure if Jones means optimistic about his availability for Week 1 or just optimistic about McLaurin's recovery in general. "He’s responded well to work on the field," Jones adds. We'll get Washington's first official practice report on the season later today.

The Washington Post's Nicki Jhabvala tweets that Commanders WR Terry McLaurin is "progressing in his recovery" from his turf toe injury. He's "considered day to day," Jhabvala adds. "There’s hope he can play in the opener Sunday, but his status is still uncertain." It's a wishy-washy report, but it at least sounds like McLaurin isn't far from game-ready. If he doesn't play this weekend, he seemingly has a good shot to be back for Week 2. We'll get Washington's first official injury report of the season on Wednesday.

Cardinals TE Zach Ertz (ACL rehab) said he’s unsure about playing Week 1. “Still some things I need to go through ... I need to see how I recover and practice consistent days in a row,” the 32-year-old said. “I gotta earn the trust of my teammates, the coaches, I don't expect them to just plug me in there and say 'this is Zach, for the past 10 years, he's gonna be the same in year 11,'" Ertz said. "I look forward to proving myself each and every day. And whether that's game one, game three, whenever I'm out there, I expect to be a difference maker.” Visit the TE rankings, and you'll see Ertz is currently projected for 13 games.

The Giants are releasing WR Jamison Crowder, according to NFL Network. It's not surprising given the glut of slot receivers on that roster -- especially with Wan'Dale Robinson coming off the PUP list. We'll see who remains at WR after the final cuts.

SI’s Albert Breer writes that Commanders RB Chris Rodriguez “will have a role (maybe a big one)” in 2023. Per Breer, the rookie Round 6 pick “has shown aggression and efficiency as a runner.” That matches up with his pre-draft profile. Over the past four seasons at Kentucky, the 220-pounder racked up 3,601 yards and 32 TDs. He added only 20 receptions over that stretch, though. And it’s tough to see him emerging as a fantasy factor behind Brian Robinson and Antonio Gibson.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that Commanders WR Terry McLaurin (toe) is "uncertain" for Week 1. "His injury typically is a multiple-week injury," Schefter adds. Not only does turf toe tend to be a multi-week injury, it's also an injury that can linger beyond that and impact a player's performance. It's a definite concern for McLaurin's 2023 fantasy outlook. We nudged him down the WR rankings.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport here's that there's "optimism" that Commanders WR Terry McLaurin (toe) will be ready for Week 1. "More day-to-day than anything, with the scans showing no major injury," Rapoport adds. We'll keep a close eye on McLaurin over the next few weeks. For now, we're not moving him down the WR rankings.

Commanders WR Terry McLaurin is believed to be dealing with a toe sprain, or turf toe, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. The injury is "not thought to be overly serious, but he’ll have an MRI today to determine the full extent," Rapoport adds. It's relatively good news, although turf toe has a tendency to linger. We'll look for further updates on McLaurin's status. For now, we're not moving him down the WR rankings.

Update: Rapoport reports that McLaurin's MRI showed "no major injury" and that the WR is "more day-to-day than anything." The team is optimistic he'll be ready for Week 1.

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