2022 Fantasy Football Red Zone Report: Sam Ehlinger Starting May Impact Jonathan Taylor in Week 8
Published: Oct 28, 2022
Updated: Oct 28, 2022
In this week’s NFL red zone report, top quarterbacks in fantasy football rankings Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert take center stage, albeit for slightly different reasons. We look at rookie sensation Kenneth Walker and his rise up 2022 NFL projections, dare I say, league winner? Will Sam Ehlinger’s mobility play a part in the red zone for the Indianapolis Colts, perhaps taking away a couple chances from Jonathan Taylor? In terms of red zone targets, Gerald Everett’s role seems safe for a few more weeks with Mike Williams landing on the NFL injury report. Plus, there's a sleeper tight end in the AFC South that might be worth a fantasy football waiver wire pickup in very deep leagues. Red zone usage is key in fantasy football, as we’ll point out all year long. From red zone passing, to rushing, to receiving, we’ll take a look at some notable numbers from the first seven weeks of the season that can help your fantasy football teams in Week 8 and the rest of the way. Using the red zone report here at Fantasy Alarm, here are the key numbers and notes in this week’s red zone analysis.
NFL Red Zone Passing
Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs
Regardless of what proclamations the team makes at running back, Mahomes is the red zone guy for Kansas City, in that they are going to let him throw it! He’s completed over 65 percent of his passes in the red zone, with a sparkling 17:1 TD/INT ratio. Following the team’s bye, he’ll get to add Kadarius Toney to his arsenal of weapons, along with Travis Kelce, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Marquez Valdes-Scantling, Skyy Moore, etc.
Justin Herbert, Los Angeles Chargers
Before the season started, if you told me that Justin Herbert would have the second-most red zone passing attempts, would I have believed you? Sure. If you told me that he was completing just over half of his passes, however, would I have believed you? Probably not. His 11:1 TD/INT ratio is solid, but he’s completing just 51 percent of his passes in the red zone, and just 47 percent inside the 10-yard line. Mike Williams’ multi-week departure is going to wreak a bit of havoc, but Gerald Everett will continue to play a role in the 20s, and Keenan Allen’s return is looming large for this team.
NFL Red Zone Rushing
Jonathan Taylor, Indianapolis Colts
Every rose has its thorn, right? The Colts threw the ball a good bit in the red zone with Matt Ryan, but the presumption is that the switch to Sam Ehlinger could result in a shift in ideology for the Colts. However, given Ehlinger’s mobility, does Taylor see some increased competition for touches in the red zone? Taylor will be the undoubted RB1 in the red zone for Indy, but Ehlinger’s mobility is well-documented, and Ehlinger had at least 100+ carries every year in college, resulting in 33 total rushing scores. This is something we will want to watch moving forward.
Kenneth Walker, Seattle Seahawks
Walker may not need red zone touches if he keeps scoring these long touchdown runs. However, it’s encouraging that he has dominated that role for the Seahawks over the last couple of weeks. He has at least five red zone carries in each of the last two weeks, and there’s no signs of him slowing down there. Amongst the Seattle running backs, he’s handled all but one red zone carry over the last three weeks. Walker is going to be a bell-cow the rest of the way, and he will make a strong case for Offensive Rookie of the Year.
Justin Fields, Chicago Bears
Fields’ red zone passing has been far from ideal, but the team is using him on the ground a good bit, and while he only has two rushing scores inside the red zone this year, that number figures to go up. He has multiple red zone rushing attempts in over half of his games this year and with some fantasy friendly matchups on the horizon, he should find himself on the QB1 fringe for the next handful of weeks.
NFL Red Zone Receiving
Austin Ekeler, Los Angeles Chargers
Ekeler said screw your touchdown regression! After scoring 20 touchdowns in the regular season last year, Ekeler has eight scores already in seven games this season, and his red zone usage, and efficiency, has been prolific. On the ground, he hasn’t received a ton of work, as 17 other running backs have more carries than him, but he’s scored four touchdowns on the ground on just 13 red zone carries this year. However, he’s caught eight of his 10 red zone targets on the year, which leads all RBs, leading to three receiving scores in the red zone. Take a look at Ekeler’s red zone production compared to last year. Ekeler takes your “touchdown regression” comments and says, “Shove it!”
RZ Rush TD
RZ Rec. TD
RZ Touchdowns per Opp.
Brevin Jordan, Houston Texans
Disclaimer: This is for those in deeper leagues only. In Jordan’s first game back in the fold since Week 2, he failed to catch any of his four targets, but he did receive ample work, and saw multiple red zone targets. Jordan showcased some red zone prowess in his rookie season, and as he continues to get more and more healthy, his usage should continue to rise. Davis Mills loves throwing to his tight ends, and nearly half of his touchdowns this season have gone to tight ends (two to O.J. Howard, one to Jordan Akins). In deeper formats, you could stash Jordan on your bench, in the hope that he emerges as the TE1 outside, and inside the 20s.
Gerald Everett, Los Angeles Chargers
We just talked about Everett’s teammates above, but we’ll shine light on Everett here. The unfortunate injury to Mike Williams cements Everett’s role in the red zone for at least the next four weeks, as that is the minimum amount of time the team expects Williams to miss. Everett saw a season-high in targets inside the 10-yard line last week. Everett’s yardage numbers have fluctuated over the course of the season, but he’s received at least six targets in all but two games this season, and his size and frame should be one of the primary replacements for Williams inside the 20s.
Fantasy Alarm is the home of all things Fantasy Sports. Bringing you the best Fantasy Football, Fantasy Baseball and Fantasy Basketball content all year long. Be sure to also check out the best fantasy promo codes on offer today!
Related NFL Links:
- 2022 Fantasy Football Week 8 PPR & Non-PPR Player Rankings
- NFL Breaking News: New York Giants Trade Kadarius Toney to the Kansas City Chiefs
- 2022 Fantasy Football NFL Week 8 Match-up Report
- Fantasy Football Week 8 Waiver Wire: Andy Dalton Is A Top QB Streamer Pickup For New Orleans Saints
- 2022 NFL Injury Report Week 8: Chuba Hubbard, Deebo Samuel and James Conner Injury Updates
- 2022 Fantasy Football WR/CB Match-Up Report NFL Week 8: Cooper Kupp Torches the San Francisco 49ers