NFL - Fantasy

NFL Week 8: DFS and Fantasy Football Players to Target

Sports Injury Central
Detroit Lions receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown runs after a catch against the Washington Commanders during
Detroit Lions receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown runs after a catch against the Washington Commanders during / Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK

Jalen Hurts, Projected FanDuel points: 22.81 ($9,200)

The former Alabama quarterback is coming off a bye and facing a Pittsburgh defense that is still recovering from injuries at key positions. Hurts is completely healthy and is facing a Pittsburgh pass defense with a SIC score of 70.7.

Hurts has average a career-high 252.3 passing yards per game this season along with a 8.2 yards per attempt, which ranks third in the league behind Tua Tagovailoa and Josh Allen. While the Eagles may grab an early lead and begin running the ball, Hurts has been their most dangerous option in that department as well. He averages 48.8 rushing yards per game on a career-high 12.8 carries per game.

Cooper Kupp, Projected FanDuel points: 17.6 ($9,300)

San Francisco allowed 423 passing yards to Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs' pass catchers last week. This week, their defensive injuries have not improved and they carry a pass defense SIC score of 64.3.

Nick Bosa is unlikely to be effective in his second game back from a groin injury and Charvarius Ward is also nursing a groin injury that made it tough for him to limit Marquez Valdes-Scantling and JuJu Smith-Schuster last week. Cooper Kupp ranks second in the league with 56 catches in seven games this season. 

In his last three games, he's had 14, 7 and 7 catches, respectively with 122 yards, 125 yards plus a touchdown and 80 yards. Kupp should have no issues surpassing his usual production against the 49ers' injury-riddled defense.

Amon-Ra St. Brown, Projected FanDuel points 11.35 ($7,200)

Detroit clarified that St. Brown did not suffer a concussion last week against the Cowboys and was simply held out because of concussion protocol.

It is a great sign he has not experienced any delayed symptoms and he will assuredly playfully against the Dolphins.

While the Lions have struggled to move the ball in recent games, D'Andre Swift will be back along with St. Brown. 

The former USC receiver has 22 yards on 5 catches in two games since returning from his ankle injury, but that should be fully behind him.

On the other side of the ball, Miami is dealing with injuries at all three starting cornerback spots.

Jonathan Taylor, Projected Fantasy Points 16.8 ($8,300)

Colts' running back Jonathan Taylor returned in Week 7 from a two-game absence and rushed 10 times for 58 yards while Indianapolis spent much of the game down multiple scores.

The bruising 23-year-old, who has a SIC score of 90, will be headlining the offense – now led by Sam Ehllinger making his first career start – with a 13.7-point SIC score advantage over the Commanders' rush defense, which gave up 237 yards to the Bears two weeks ago. 

The 2021 breakout fantasy star had 31 rushes for 161 yards in Week 1 but hasn't topped 71 yards in a game since. Taylor similarly started last season with one 100-yard game and a 65.4 average through Week 5 and finished with 1,484 yards and 16 touchdowns, including eight 100-yard games with at least one score.

PJ Walker, Projected Fantasy Points 12.4 (6,400)

The former XFL star has found his groove in the NFL. After a slow start last year, Walker found his rhythm against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. According to PFF, he had the highest passing grade out of any quarterback last week (94.0). Furthermore, Walker was first in big-time throw rate and 14th in adjusted completion rate.

This week he faces the third-lowest-rated passing defense (63.8), according to SIC The Falcons will miss multiple starters, including Jaylin Hawkins and AJ Terell. These absences from key players in their secondary could lead to another big day from Walker. Don’t be surprised if Walker leads PFF’s passing grade metric one more week.

Sports Injury Central is the home of Pro Football Doc – the FanDuel Official Injury Expert – and a leading panel of former team physicians from the NFL, CFB, NBA, and MLB. The team analyzes injuries to give fans an edge with their wagering and fantasy sports activities. For injury-based picks throughout the season, sign up for SIC Picks here.