NFL Week 12 Fantasy Football Recap: Carolina Panthers vs. Denver Broncos

Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers wide receiver DJ Moore (2) makes the initial scoring catch defended by Denver Broncos cornerback Pat Surtain II (2) during the first quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

D.J. Moore: 4 receptions, 103 yards, 1 touchdown

D’Onta Foreman: 24 carries, 113 yards

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The Broncos' new backfield: Latavius Murray dominated playing time for the Broncos after they released Melvin Gordon III and Chase Edmonds landed on injured reserve.

  • Murray handled a clear majority of snaps in all situations. This wasn’t a surprise on early downs but was less expected on passing downs.
  • He gained 75 receiving yards receiving last season and has 70 this season, including his six-yard reception today, which is why the receiving role was noteworthy.
  • Murray on the ground was the Broncos' primary source of offense. He gained 92 yards on 13 carries, including a 52-yard run.
  • Marlon Mack served as his backup on early downs, while Devine Ozigbo was the backup on third downs.
  • Mike Boone had been the Broncos' third-down back earlier in the season before landing on injured reserve. Boone is eligible to return from injured reserve this upcoming week and could take a lot of the passing-down work going forward.
  • Denver has the fourth-most-difficult schedule for running backs going forward, with only bad or average matchups remaining. Murray might be only a borderline starter once Boone returns.

Panthers relying on the run: Carolina ran the ball 41 times with its top two running backs, and Sam Darnold threw only 19 times in his first start of the season.

  • D’Onta Foreman unsurprisingly led the Panthers with a 100-yard performance, but Chuba Hubbard also contributed with a season-high 17 carries.
  • Hubbard’s playing time was partially due to Foreman missing a little time in the second quarter. It was also because Carolina wanted to stick with the run game.
  • Raheem Blackshear had been making this a three-man backfield in recent weeks, but he played just three snaps in this game. That definitely helps the fantasy value of the other two backs.
  • The Panthers have a bye next week, but then their next three opponents are among the top half of teams at allowing fantasy points to running backs. Two of those three teams are outside of playoff contention, so there is a chance Carolina will be able to stick with this strategy for most of the remaining fantasy season.
  • It’s unlikely Hubbard can be trusted in fantasy starting lineups because a lot could go wrong for him, but he could be a cheap DFS play in those games. 
  • Foreman should remain a starter for that three-game stretch.

Table Notes

Snaps include plays called back due to penalties, including offensive holding or defensive pass interference. The other three stats have these plays removed.

Targets may differ from official NFL sources. The most likely discrepancy would be from a clear thrown-away pass, where the NFL may give the target to the nearest receiver, while this data will not.

Carries are only on designed plays. Quarterback scrambles won’t count for the total number of carries in the game.


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