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NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reports that TE Zach Ertz has agreed to a one-year deal with the Commanders worth "up to" $5 million. We'll be curious to see more specific terms on the contract -- such as whether it even guarantees he'll even break training camp with the team. Ertz managed just 27 catches over six games for the Cardinals last year, coming off a 2022 ACL tear. He failed to reach another active roster after Arizona waived him Nov. 30. (He finished the year on Detroit's practice squad.) Ertz will turn 34 in November and has set career lows in yards per catch each of the past two seasons (8.6, then 6.9). He spent his pre-2023 Arizona time playing under then-HC Kliff Kingsbury, who joined Washington as OC this offseason. We'll see how much that factored into Ertz's signing and what Kingsbury might have planned. The Commanders have room on the TE depth chart after dumping Logan Thomas, with only Cole Turner and John Bates under contract. But the Ertz signing shouldn't exclude them from making any other moves at the position. You can consider Ertz as a third TE late in your best ball drafts, but we wouldn't chase him any earlier than that.

Recent Shark Bites

The Lions are signing TE Zach Ertz, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. Ertz arrives as a fairly big name, but don't consider him a serious challenge to TE Sam LaPorta's outlook. Detroit suddenly finds weak depth at the position after losing Brock Wright to a forearm fracture in Sunday's win over the Buccaneers. The team previously placed TE James Mitchell on IR after he suffered a hand injury in practice ahead of the win over the Rams. Wright drew just 1 target before leaving Sunday's game, in which he played 30 snaps. No Lions TE besides LaPorta drew a target in the previous game, despite LaPorta being just a week removed from a knee injury.

Cardinals TE Zach Ertz asked the team to release him, and they are granting that request, according to multiple reports (starting with former teammate J.J. Watt's). Ertz has spent the past five games on IR, leaving room for TE Trey McBride to become Arizona's lead receiver. Ertz's impending return looked like the biggest potential remaining hurdle for McBrides 2023 fantasy outlook. Now that Ertz is out of the way, you can (even more) comfortably start McBride the rest of the way. His second-half breakout this season also position's the 2022 second-round pick as a nice-looking dynasty asset. We'd bet on Ertz finding a new 2023 home, but he'll have a tough time regaining fantasy relevance.

The Cardinals are placing TE Zach Ertz on IR with a quad strain he suffered in Sunday's loss to the Seahawks. That knocks the veteran out for at least the next four games and vaults TE Trey McBride into fantasy relevance. The second-year TE has been disappointing so far, averaging just 2.1 receptions per game and trailing the 32-year-old Ertz in usage. But McBride's route participation picked up the past two weeks and figures to take an even bigger jump now. He has already ranked second on the year in yards per route among TEs with 20+ targets -- tied with Jonnu Smith and ahead of Mark Andrews and Sam LaPorta, among others.

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.

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