The Ravens RB room has been ravaged by injuries heading into Week 1’s Monday Night Football game in Las Vegas, but it appeared to be all systems go for the Raiders — until late Sunday afternoon, that is. That’s when reports dropped that starting running back Josh Jacobs was downgraded to “questionable” for MNF — not because of injury but rather an illness. The good news is he’s not dealing with COVID-19, but we still likely won’t be sure of whether he’s playing until the official active/inactive reports. For fantasy football owners making their final start ’em, sit ’em decision of the week, waiting for those updates is cutting things a little too close.
We’ll continue to update this post with news on Jacobs up until the active/inactive report comes out on Monday around 6:45 p.m. ET. For all the latest fantasy updates, follow us on Twitter @SN_Fantasy.
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Is Josh Jacobs playing on Monday night?
The outlook on Jacobs wasn’t particularly favorable for this game. Not only is he facing what’s expected to be a solid Ravens defense, but Kenyan Drake’s presence also adds a new wrinkle to the Raiders’ offense. Who will play more on passing downs? Will Jacobs get subbed out around the goal line often? Just how many carries will Jacobs average per game? Nonetheless, many fantasy owners had him in their lineups and were counting on his production.
With news of his illness (again, not COVID-19), Jacobs is even less likely to see a full complement of touches even if he is active. He could be looking at a relatively meager 10-12 carries, and if he doesn’t get into the end zone, he seems destined to have a disappointing day. Of course, this late in the week, there really aren’t many other options left. If you need a new RB, then Le’Veon Bell is really the only one available in more than 50 percent of Yahoo leagues, and we’re not even sure if he’s going to play much (or at all). Hopefully, you handcuffed Jacobs with Kenyan Drake on draft day, and it’s reasonable to play a fully healthy Drake even if Jacobs is active.
The real lesson here is that you should always move players who haven’t started their games to your flex (if possible). If you did that, you’d have more options right now. WRs Bryan Edwards, Henry Ruggs III, Hunter Renfrow, and Sammy Watkins are all reasonable pivots for a flex spot when you’re in a bind like this. Edwards and Ruggs are particularly nice boom-or-bust options.
If you left Jacobs in your RB spot (and started an RB already in your flex), then you limited yourself unnecessarily. It’s Week 1, so we’re all still (re)learning these things, but we’ve seen enough “surprise inactives” this week to remind us of this fact.
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