Injuries on the last drive of a football game can be one of the most frustrating parts about fantasy football. You’re at home rolling your eyes with your victory already in the bag wondering why James Conner is still out there with a two touchdown lead over the winless Dolphins. Then it actually happens and your jaw drops and you go numb. James Conner gets up grimacing and holding his slumped shoulder.
It’s hard to get upset from an actual football perspective. The Steelers are 1 first down away from the victory formation and Conner had been running all over the Dolphins all night. Conner just ran into some bad luck. Conner also seems to always be banged up in one way or another. He’s had an ankle issue, a quad issue, and now an AC joint issue and we are only about halfway through the season. I’m not sure what the recovery timetable is for AC joint injuries is, or if he’ll miss any time at all. It’s definitely something we’re going to have to monitor as the week goes along.
If James Conner misses any time, the Steelers are already pretty thin at the running back position. Jaylen Samuels is recovering from surgery and Benny Snell didn’t return to the game last night after getting injured. At the moment, Trey Edmunds is the only healthy running back for the Steelers. Here is what else I saw Monday night in Pittsburgh.
– Mason Rudolph was throwing ducks in the first half. His velocity reminded me of Peyton Manning’s final season. But Peyton Manning was like 15 years older than Mason Rudolph is now. Rudolph was able to connect with receivers finding space to the tune of 251 yards and 2 touchdowns.
– Diontae Johnson had a long gain called back because of a touchy offensive pass interference call, but it ended up benefitting him because on the same drive, he took a dump off 45 yards in for a score. Johnson ended the night by catching 5 balls for 84 yards on 7 targets.
– It’s good to see Mason Rudolph and JuJu Smith-Schuster have a good game together. J2S2 led the Steelers with 9 targets and caught 5 of them for 103 yards and a touchdown. If there is any sort of sell window on J2S2, which I’m sure that there is, it’s time to end your JuJu ownership on a high note.
– Vance McDonald just isn’t the breakout tight end that myself and many others thought that he would be. The Roethlisberger injury in week 1 didn’t help, but you’d think McDonald would be able to find more space than he did against the Dolphins.
– Mark Walton was in firm control of the carry workload vs. Kalen Ballage. Walton will be a nice waiver wire stab because the best you can do on the wire or your faab budget is to invest in opportunity. 3.2 ypc last night wasn’t super encouraging, but it certainly seems like the is Walton’s backfield to lose.
– Preston Williams and DeVante Parker combined for 101 yards on 15 targets. Neither found paydirt. I still prefer Williams over Parker with Fitzpatrick under center. That’s weird to say about an undrafted rookie compared to a former first rounder, but Williams is probably better and better for fantasy.
– Let’s close out by checking in with Mike Gesicki. Wow! 2 catches for 10 yards. One of these days, he’s going to make it happen and I’ll be right here at Razzball dot com to cheer him on