Fantasy Football: Ezekiel Elliott suspension being put on hold -- for now
Despite the NFL’s statement this week that Ezekiel Elliott‘s six-game suspension has begun, the judge in Texas overseeing his case says otherwise. Jamey Eisenberg gives you the latest Fantasy spin on the Dallas running back situation.
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It's on, it's off. He's in, he's out ... does anyone really know what's happening with Ezekiel Elliott and his six-game suspension? The whole thing is making my head spin, and I wish we had a definitive answer.
I'm sure Fantasy players agree.
On Saturday, news broke that despite the NFL stating Thursday that Elliott's suspension was beginning immediately, it will not start until further legal action takes place. I'm not a lawyer, but it sounds like Elliott will be playing in Week 7 at San Francisco when the Cowboys come off their bye. He might also finish out the season without missing a game.
Here is what CBS Sports NFL writer Will Brinson wrote about the latest update in Elliott's case, and:
"On Thursday the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated the injunction granted to the Cowboys running back by a Texas judge. The injunction kept Elliott's six-game suspension from the NFL at bay and allowed the Cowboys running back to keep playing football.
The Fifth Circuit ordered the Elliott case back to New York where the NFL already has a suit pending to enforce the suspension. However, court rules allow the NFLPA seven days to file a petition for an en banc rehearing in Texas, a hearing in front of the full panel of Fifth Circuit judges. The NFLPA says it was told by the court clerk it would have 14 days to file this petition.
However, less than 24 hours after vacating the injunction, the Fifth Circuit mandated the case back to New York. In response, the NFLPA filed a new motion Friday asking the fifth circuit to recall that order and let it seek further appeals in Texas. Sources tell Dash, Mazzant will not lift the injunction until the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals makes a ruling on the new motion.
So, as of right now, Elliott's suspension will not be in place. However, the Cowboys are on bye this week and it is possible that the court could rule on the matter as quickly as Monday, meaning that there could be a resolution to this before anyone has to make a decision on starting or sitting Elliott in their Fantasy lineup. (Read: don't drop Alfred Morris just yet.)"
The last part is really all Fantasy owners want to know about, which is what to do with the backups in Dallas while the situation remains uncertain. When the news broke Thursday that the six-game suspension was back on, there was a mad rush to get Morris (70 percent owned on CBS Sports) and Darren McFadden (55 percent) off the waiver wire, which was understandable.
You should still plan on stashing Morris and McFadden if possible through next week until there is something definitive on Elliott's status. Even though it appears like Elliott will play against the 49ers in Week 7, as Brinson wrote, the court could rule on the matter Monday, which could put the suspension back in place.
However, if there is a player on waivers you want or need to add, especially if you're not the Elliott owner, then you can cut Morris or McFadden on Saturday night or Sunday morning with the hope to get either one back Tuesday when waivers first run next week. For example, I'd rather have Indianapolis running back Marlon Mack (69 percent or San Francisco running back Matt Breida (51 percent) than Morris or McFadden for this week.
Mack could be headed for a bigger role with the Colts going into Week 6 against Tennessee, and there's a report the 49ers are open to trading Carlos Hyde, which would be great for Breida's Fantasy outlook. I like those two scenarios better than the possibility of Morris and McFadden sharing touches should Elliott serve his suspension.
But will there even be a suspension this year? And will we get an answer soon? We just have to wait it out, but hopefully Elliott will play in Week 7 and not miss any games this season.
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