Start DeVante Parker with Jaylen Waddle Out? How Dolphins WR, Phillip Lindsay On COVID List Impacts Fantasy
Mark Brown/Getty Images. Pictured: DeVante Parker
The Miami Dolphins are coming out of a Week 14 bye to deal with their largest COVID-19 outbreak to date.
It initially ravaged their running back depth chart, sending Myles Gaskin, Salvon Ahmed, Phillip Lindsay and Gerrid Doaks to the COVID-19/reserve list. But on Friday, head coach Brian Flores announced that the team removed both Gaskin and Ahmed from the list. The pair are now on track to play in Sunday’s home game against the Jets, which could have major AFC wild-card implications.
Lindsay and rookie wide receiver Jaylen Waddle remain on the list as of writing on Saturday, though.
Editor’s note: The following was written before reports confirmed that Waddle and Lindsay would miss Week 15, but our analyst’s advice includes that scenario.
Dolphins COVID List
Here are fantasy-relevant players on the Dolphins’ COVID list as of writing:
- WR Jaylen Waddle
- RB Phillip Lindsay
Who To Start vs. Sit In Fantasy If These Dolphins Play
WR Jaylen Waddle
Waddle was placed on the COVID-19/reserve list on Thursday, joining five other Dolphins’ players at the time. If Waddle is vaccinated, he can rejoin the team if he produces tow negative tests 24 hours apart. If not, he would have to miss a minimum of 10 days.
Waddle, 23, was the Dolphins’ first-round pick in 2021.
Verdict If Active
Waddle is a must-start if active. He’s on a 17-game pace to shatter the 1,000-receiving yard mark in his rookie campaign and currently ranks sixth in receptions in the NFL. He is currently the WR22 on a per-game basis in half PPR and should be considered a high-end WR2 if active. DeVante Parker would be a high-end WR3/flex if Waddle starts.
Verdict If Inactive
In the likely event Waddle misses Sunday’s game, Parker would be the incumbent No. 1 from the Dolphins’ receiving corps. Parker has played in only six games this year due to various injuries, but did look solid in Week 13 before the bye. He caught 5-of-5 targets for 62 yards. Parker should be considered a solid WR2 if Waddle sits.
Waddle’s potential absence also boosts tight end Mike Gesicki’s value. The tight end had a nice five-game stretch in the first half, but has cooled off since then. He did see a whopping 11 targets in Week 13 against the Giants. The Jets rank seventh-worst in fantasy points allowed to tight ends, making Gesicki a mid- to low-end TE1 this week.
RB Phillip Lindsay
Lindsay being placed on the COVID-19/reserve list is significantly less noteworthy than Waddle, especially with Gaskin and Ahmed now active.
The veteran running back joined the Dolphins in late November after being released from the Texans. He has appeared in 11 games this season and has tallied 62 attempts for 172 yards and a touchdown.
- Verdict if active: Lindsay isn’t a factor for fantasy — even if active in this juicy matchup against the Jets.
- Verdict if inactive: Lindsay being inactive would primarily boost Gaskin’s value. Gaskin should be regarded as a RB2 in this positive matchup against Gang Green’s run defense, which has allowed the most fantasy points to running backs this year.