Dalvin Cook and Alexander Mattison Injury Update Boosts Mike Boone Fantasy Outlook as Must-Start RB in Week 16

Mike Boone during a matchup against the Saints.
Mike Boone during a matchup against the Saints. / Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

We still don't have an official word on their statuses for Monday's game against the Green Bay Packers, but Dalvin Cook and Alexander Mattison both sat out of the Minnesota Vikings' practice on Thursday.

This is a strong indicator that neither will play, which would make Mike Boone an absolute must-start running back in fantasy football for Week 16.

Cook is nursing a shoulder injury, which has held him to fewer than 50 percent of the Vikings' offensive snaps in three straight games. An ankle injury held Mattison out in Week 15, and a Week 16 return is not looking likely.

Boone stepped up after Cook went down last week, playing 32 percent of the Vikes' snaps and racking up 77 yards and two TDs on 15 touches (13 carries and two receptions).

The Vikings have leaned heavily on whoever their lead RB has been, and Boone's workload looked a lot like Mattison's had when he filled in for Cook (14 carries and two receptions on a 38 percent snap share in Week 14). Cook, of course, had been a true bell-cow running back, and through 11 full healthy games he averaged 19.5 carries and 4.9 targets per game.

Accounting for both Cook and Mattison missing Monday's game, our Week 16 PPR fantasy football rankings have Boone at RB18 against a Packers defense that ranks 25th against the run per Football Outsiders' defensive DVOA metrics.

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Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.