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Shark Bites

The Colts selected North Carolina WR Josh Downs in Round 3 of the 2023 NFL Draft. Downs’ production profile is as strong as any WR in this year’s class. He broke out with a 100-catch, 1,335-yard sophomore season in 2021 and then racked up another 94 catches, 1,029 yards, and 11 TDs this past year. He accounted for a massive 33.6% of North Carolina’s receptions, 30.9% of the receiving yards, and 29.7% of the receiving TDs over the past two seasons. We were a bit underwhelmed by Downs’ tape, though. He struggles against physical coverage, has a relatively small catch radius, and lacks elite downfield speed (confirmed by his 4.48-second 40 time). On the plus side, Downs has no trouble creating separation on short and intermediate routes and is a weapon after the catch. The 5’9, 171-pounder is destined for the slot as a pro. There's room for him to see early work there for a Colts squad that just let WR Parris Campbell walk in free agency. We remain unexcited about the third-rounder's long-term outlook, though. Check out Downs' initial projections in our 2023 fantasy football WR rankings.

Recent Shark Bites

Colts rookie WR Josh Downs drew a team-high 9 targets in Sunday's loss to the Falcons, 24.3% of the team total. WR Michael Pittman's absence obviously helped. Downs caught six (team high) but managed just 39 yards (6.5 per catch). That makes seven straight games of 43 yards or less for Downs. He's not especially attractive for a Week 17 date with the Raiders, whether Pittman's back or not.

Colts WR Josh Downs tied for the team lead with 13 targets in Sunday's win over the Bucs. He caught just five of them for 43 yards. QB Gardner Minshew wasn't very good in this one and had multiple misfires and miscommunications with Downs. One of them resulted in a Carlton Davis INT. It was a frustrating outing from Downs -- but encouraging for his going-forward outlook. The rookie has now averaged 8.4 targets per game over his last five healthy outings with Minshew. Downs gets three straight plus matchups the next three weeks against the Titans, Bengals, and Steelers.

Colts WR Josh Downs is not listed on the Week 12 injury report. He battled a knee injury the past couple of games but is evidently ready to go coming off the bye week. Downs gets a great matchup on Sunday vs. Tampa Bay's 27th-ranked WR defense.

Colts WR Josh Downs (knee) is active for today's game vs. the Patriots. Downs aggravated his knee injury early in last week's game and then didn't practice at all this week. ESPN's Adam Schefter said Saturday night that "the team could be cautious in how much it uses him" today. We'd try not to use Downs in Week 10 fantasy lineups.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that Colts WR Josh Downs (knee) is expected to play vs. the Patriots on Sunday morning. "But the team could be cautious in how much it uses him," Schefter adds. Downs lasted just 12 snaps last weekend before re-injuring his knee and then didn’t practice at all this week. He'd be an extremely risky Week 10 fantasy start.

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