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2014 Draft Prep: Picking No. 11 overall

Senior Fantasy Writer
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Pick No. 1 | Pick No. 2 | Pick No. 3 | Pick No. 4 | Pick No. 5 | Pick No. 6
Pick No. 7 | Pick No. 8 | Pick No. 9 | Pick No. 10 | Pick No. 12

One aspect about picking at the end of each round is you can set up two picks nearly every time you are on the clock. It gives you a little more control.

If you're drafting in the middle of the round you're stuck as players you want come off the board without really much of a choice after you made your selection. Sure, you'll get a potential stud at No. 5 overall, but will you get the player you covet in Round 2? The owners picking at No. 10, No. 11 and No. 12 have much more say, which is their advantage.

For example, at this spot in the draft at No. 11 overall, I can line up two guys I want on every turn. In the standard league, I drafted DeMarco Murray in Round 1 and knew I would get either Demaryius Thomas in Round 2 or a running back I like in Le'Veon Bell or Giovani Bernard. Bell was my choice.

In the point-per-reception league, once I went with Montee Ball in Round 1, I planned on Dez Bryant, Julio Jones or Brandon Marshall next. Bryant was there, and he was the easy selection.

You also want to pay attention to the owner picking at No. 12, because you don't want them to take your guy. If it comes down to both of you needing a quarterback or tight end, then you should pull the trigger in the odd round and not take a chance your guy gets selected.

One tool to help you with this is the roster grid in the draft room. Pay attention. The more you know about what's going on around you the better your team will be.

In this two-man draft with my colleague Dave Richard, there were two instances where that happened in the standard league. In Round 3, I went with Julius Thomas knowing he had yet to take a tight end, and I didn't want to risk losing him. And in Round 6, I wanted Matt Ryan when he had yet to take a quarterback, and he took Tom Brady two rounds later.

You're not in a bad position drafting with a pick in the middle of the round, but we all like to control our own fate. You can do that better picking at the beginning or end of each round, and I like the way these teams turned out from No. 11 overall.

Editor's note: The percentages listed are what position you should target based on that round for each pick.

Round 1

Round 1 - Standard QB 10% RB 40% WR 40% TE 10%
Round 1 - PPR QB 0% RB 50% WR 40% TE 10%

Picking at No. 11 is a spot where you can consider taking two receivers with your first two picks. We didn't do it here in either format, instead going with Murray and Bell in the standard league and Ball and Bryant in PPR. The alternative in each format would have been Thomas and Bryant in the standard league and any combination of receivers in the PPR league aside from Calvin Johnson and Thomas. The reason I went with two running backs in the standard league is because the position dries up fast, and finding workhorse rushers is nearly impossible this season. They may falter since running backs have a high percentage of being busts, but if they hit, your team should be in amazing shape. In the PPR league, I have no problem taking a running back like Ball in Round 1 since he could deliver big gains similar to Knowshon Moreno last year, and Moreno had 60 catches in 2013. The reason this makes sense is I knew one of Bryant, Jones, Marshall or A.J. Green would still be there, and I was thrilled with this start.

Players you can get here (standard): DeMarco Murray, Alfred Morris, Demaryius Thomas, Le'Veon Bell, Giovani Bernard
Players you can get here (PPR): Montee Ball, Eddie Lacy, Brandon Marshall, Dez Bryant, Julio Jones
My selection at No. 11 standard: DeMarco Murray
My selection at No. 11 PPR: Montee Ball

Round 2

Round 2 - Standard QB 10% RB 40% WR 40% TE 10%
Round 2 - PPR QB 0% RB 30% WR 50% TE 20%

Drafting two running backs in the first two rounds might seem ancient, but why not lock up quality players at a thin position when receiver is deep? Some might argue Murray and Bell are risky, and I get that with Murray's injury history and Bell's inexperience. But finding standout receivers is easier than stud running backs. You can argue for each side, but I'll take the running back depth in standard leagues whenever possible. In PPR, however, give me a stud receiver early, which we got here in Bryant.

Players you can get here (standard): Le'Veon Bell, Giovani Bernard, Dez Bryant, Peyton Manning, Doug Martin
Players you can get here (PPR): Dez Bryant, Julio Jones, A.J. Green, Jordy Nelson, Le'Veon Bell
My selection at No. 14 standard: Le'Veon Bell
My selection at No. 14 PPR: Dez Bryant

Round 3

Round 3 - Standard QB 10% RB 30% WR 30% TE 30%
Round 3 - PPR QB 10% RB 40% WR 40% TE 10%

Since we went running back with our first two picks in the standard league, it was time to look at receiver. The top guys on the board were all solid in Andre Johnson, Vincent Jackson, Michael Crabtree and Pierre Garcon. But instead of taking a low-end No. 1 receiver, we pulled an audible with a Top 3 tight end in Julius Thomas. There are three elite tight ends this season in Jimmy Graham, Rob Gronkowski and Thomas. If you can lock up one of them your team should have a great advantage against the majority of the league. I also knew one of those receivers would still be around in Round 4 three picks later. In the PPR league, I probably should have taken Thomas as well, but I added a second running back in Toby Gerhart. He's a wild card because we've never seen him in a featured role for a full season, but he could pay big dividends with all the work he's expected to receive this year.

Players you can get here (standard): Julius Thomas, Andre Johnson, Reggie Bush, Vincent Jackson, Michael Crabtree
Players you can get here (PPR): Toby Gerhart, Julius Thomas, Ray Rice, Michael Crabtree, C.J. Spiller
My selection at No. 35 standard: Julius Thomas
My selection at No. 35 PPR: Toby Gerhart

Round 4

Round 4 - Standard QB 10% RB 30% WR 60% TE 0%
Round 4 - PPR QB 10% RB 20% WR 60% TE 10%

We put ourselves in a position where receiver is a priority after taking Murray, Bell and Thomas in the standard league. Like I said earlier, the plan worked out with Jackson being available in this round. Ideally, Jackson is your No. 2 receiver, but he passes as a No. 1 option with a pick in Round 4 based on the three players we started with. In the PPR league, Crabtree makes for a great No. 2 receiver to pair with Bryant. His stats with Colin Kaepernick should be amazing if both stay healthy. In the seven starts Kaepernick made in 2012, Crabtree had 41 catches for 595 yards and five touchdowns. If you project that over 16 games, Crabtree would have finished with 94 catches for 1,360 yards and 11 touchdowns. We hope he reaches those heights this season.

Players you can get here (standard): Vincent Jackson, Michael Crabtree, C.J. Spiller, Pierre Garcon, Keenan Allen
Players you can get here (PPR): Michael Crabtree, C.J. Spiller, Vincent Jackson, Drew Brees, Keenan Allen
My selection at No. 38 standard: Vincent Jackson
My selection at No. 38 PPR: Michael Crabtree

Round 5

Round 5 - Standard QB 20% RB 30% WR 50% TE 0%
Round 5 - PPR QB 20% RB 30% WR 30% TE 20%

In this spot, I wasn't going to reach for a receiver if a running back made sense for my flex option. But since the available guys were Rashad Jennings, Chris Johnson and Ben Tate, I wanted more of a difference maker. Quarterback was an option, but I wanted to wait a little longer there as well. So I pulled the trigger on a receiver I consider a breakout candidate in Golden Tate, who should love leaving the run-heavy Seahawks for the pass-happy Lions. He's a better No. 3 receiver than No. 2 option, but based on our roster he'll work just fine. In the PPR league, I was also looking at a difference maker, and Jason Witten has been a star in this format for most of his career. But since the owner at No. 12 already had Thomas, I knew I could wait. With that in mind, I went with my flex option in Percy Harvin. He's an obvious risk based on his injury history, but if he's healthy he should be a steal in this spot. I'll gamble on him with the idea of taking Witten next.

Players you can get here (standard): Golden Tate, Rashad Jennings, Chris Johnson, Matt Ryan, Torrey Smith
Players you can get here (PPR): Percy Harvin, Jeremy Maclin, Eric Decker, Jason Witten, Rashad Jennings
My selection at No. 59 standard: Golden Tate
My selection at No. 59 PPR: Percy Harvin

Round 6

Round 6 - Standard QB 20% RB 40% WR 40% TE 0%
Round 6 - PPR QB 0% RB 50% WR 50% TE 0%

The plan to wait on Witten worked in the PPR league, and he's always overlooked despite his consistency. He's had at least 73 catches and 850 yards each of the past seven years, and he's averaged five touchdowns a season over that span. The lack of touchdowns is the knock on him, but he does have five or more scores in three of the past four seasons. He's a Top 5 tight end for me in PPR formats. In the standard league, I felt the running backs here weren't stellar, so the pick was Matt Ryan. He should rebound in a big way with a healthy Julio Jones and Roddy White. I consider Ryan a Top 5 Fantasy quarterback this season.

Players you can get here (standard): Matt Ryan, Torrey Smith, Dennis Pitta, DeSean Jackson, Ben Tate
Players you can get here (PPR): Jason Witten, Rashad Jennings, Golden Tate, Marques Colston, Pierre Thomas
My selection at No. 62 standard: Matt Ryan
My selection at No. 62 PPR: Jason Witten

Round 7

Round 7 - Standard QB 0% RB 60% WR 40% TE 0%
Round 7 - PPR QB 30% RB 50% WR 20% TE 0%

Usually when I get through six rounds I like to evaluate my team to see if I'm happy. In the standard league, we have Murray and Bell at running back, Jackson and Tate at receiver, Ryan at quarterback and Thomas at tight end. That's a solid group, and now the need is running back or receiver depth. We went with Eric Decker here, and the hope is he doesn't completely fall off with the move from Denver to the Jets. I don't mind Decker in Round 7 or later if he's your No. 3 receiver. As a Fantasy starter, I would expect Decker to flop. In the PPR league, we had Ball and Gerhart at running back, Bryant, Crabtree and Harvin at receiver and Witten at tight end. We could lock up another running back here or look at quarterback, which is the route we took. Andrew Luck has been a good but not superstar Fantasy quarterback through two years, but that should change this season with the addition of Hakeem Nicks and healthy return of Reggie Wayne and Dwayne Allen to go with T.Y. Hilton. Luck is someone to target in all leagues with a breakout season on the horizon.

Players you can get here (standard): Eric Decker, Sammy Watkins, Tom Brady, Khiry Robinson, Knowshon Moreno
Players you can get here (PPR): Andrew Luck, Terrance West, Robert Griffin III, Darren Sproles, Greg Olsen
My selection at No. 83 standard: Eric Decker
My selection at No. 83 PPR: Andrew Luck

Round 8

Round 8 - Standard QB 0% RB 60% WR 40% TE 0%
Round 8 - PPR QB 0% RB 60% WR 40% TE 0%

We ignored our third running back for too long, which is fine given the other talent we acquired, but you don't want to get stuck with a lack of depth at the position given the injuries that routinely occur throughout the year. In the standard league, Khiry Robinson was the pick, and we hope he picks up where last season left off. With Pierre Thomas out for the playoffs last year with a rib injury, Robinson had eight carries for 45 yards against the Eagles and 13 carries for 57 yards and a touchdown and one catch for 13 yards against the Seahawks. Thomas will spend more time on passing downs this year, meaning Robinson and Mark Ingram will split time on rushing downs. Robinson has the chance to be a serviceable No. 3 running back and flex option this season. In the PPR league, we went with Robinson's former teammate in Darren Sproles. The move to the Eagles will lower Sproles' value, but he's still going to remain a vital part of the passing game, making him more than relevant in PPR leagues. He's a good gamble as a flex option at this point in the draft.

Players you can get here (standard): Khiry Robinson, Knowshon Moreno, Fred Jackson, Mike Evans, Devonta Freeman
Players you can get here (PPR): Darren Sproles, Greg Olsen, Jordan Reed, Maurice Jones-Drew, Tony Romo
My selection at No. 86 standard: Khiry Robinson
My selection at No. 86 PPR: Darren Sproles

Round 9

Round 9 - Standard QB 0% RB 60% WR 40% TE 0%
Round 9 - PPR QB 0% RB 60% WR 40% TE 0%

Running back depth was still a priority on both teams since the receiver talent wasn't overwhelming on the board. In the standard league, Andre Williams was the pick, and he could end up as a steal. He could end up as a potential flex option if he gets consistent work in tandem with Jennings now that David Wilson (neck) was forced to retire. In the PPR league, we went with Jeremy Hill, who could be given 10-15 carries a game, according to reports out of Cincinnati. Giovani Bernard is the best running back for the Bengals, but Hill is worth a late-round pick in all leagues since he could be the one working at the goal line.

Players you can get here (standard): Andre Williams, Darren Sproles, Seahawks DST, Reggie Wayne, Philip Rivers
Players you can get here (PPR): Jeremy Hill, Charles Sims, Andre Williams, Tre Mason, Carlos Hyde
My selection at No. 107 standard: Andre Williams
My selection at No. 107 PPR: Jeremy Hill

Round 10

Round 10 - Standard QB 0% RB 50% WR 50% TE 0%
Round 10 - PPR QB 0% RB 50% WR 50% TE 0%

Based on the rosters for both teams, I was comfortable looking at best player available in either format. In the standard league, that meant taking a flier on Wayne as my No. 4 receiver. He should be fine coming off last year's torn ACL, and he's expected to start opposite Hilton. The addition of Nicks will cut into Wayne's playing time, but he is still worth the risk at this point in the draft based on my roster. In the PPR league, we went with another running back in Tre Mason. He's gotten off to a slow start in training camp, but we'd like to see what happens if Zac Stacy got hurt. Would the Rams use Mason more or go with a committee approach with Benny Cunningham and Isaiah Pead? We think Mason would play a prominent role, but he's only worth a late-round flier like he was here heading into the season. Stacy is still the man for the Rams.

Players you can get here (standard): Reggie Wayne, Philip Rivers, Dwayne Bowe, Charles Sims, Cam Newton
Players you can get here (PPR): Tre Mason, Carlos Hyde, Dwayne Bowe, Hakeem Nicks, Stepfan Taylor
My selection at No. 110 standard: Reggie Wayne
My selection at No. 110 PPR: Tre Mason

Round 11

Round 11 - Standard QB 20% RB 40% WR 40% TE 0% DST 0%
Round 11 - PPR QB 10% RB 40% WR 40% TE 0% DST 10%

I'm usually not looking at a second quarterback when I draft someone like Luck, but I won't hesitate to draft a high-end No. 2 option who falls. In this case, Cam Newton was available in Round 11, so I drafted him. Now, the Newton debate is interesting this season because some Fantasy owners still view him as a Top 5 option since he's been a consistent threat throughout his career even with mediocre receivers. But along with losing his Top 3 guys in Steve Smith, Brandon LaFell and Ted Ginn, his offensive line is a mess and he's coming off ankle surgery. He's also indicated he would run less, which lowers his value. I don't mind Newton as a low-end starter, but I'd prefer to draft him as a backup with upside and potentially trade him during the year. In the standard league, we gambled on Josh Gordon here. If he's able to play at all this season then it's a steal. And if his suspension is held up for the year then he's an easy cut candidate in Round 11.

Players you can get here (standard): Josh Gordon, Ben Roethlisberger, Jordan Matthews, Rams DST, Travaris Cadet
Players you can get here (PPR): Cam Newton, Philip Rivers, Brian Hartline, Danny Amendola, 49ers DST
My selection at No. 131 standard: Josh Gordon
My selection at No. 131 PPR: Cam Newton

Round 12

Round 12 - Standard QB 0% RB 40% WR 30% TE 0% DST 30%
Round 12 - PPR QB 0% RB 40% WR 40% TE 0% DST 20%

The Rams DST is one of the few units I would take earlier than expected because I'm expecting a big payout on my investment. They have been a Top 10 Fantasy option the past two years and have a quality pass rush to go with good playmakers in James Laurinaitis, Robert Quinn, Chris Long, Alec Ogletree and Janoris Jenkins. I'm fine if you take them before other owners because you'll enjoy watching them rack up big points for your Fantasy team. In the PPR league, I gambled on Danny Amendola. You never know what could happen if he stays healthy, and all reports this offseason have been positive. He's an easy player to replace off waivers if he struggles or gets hurt.

Players you can get here (standard): Rams DST, Travaris Cadet, Russell Wilson, Andre Brown, Justin Hunter
Players you can get here (PPR): Danny Amendola, 49ers DST, Lance Dunbar, Doug Baldwin, Rod Streater
My selection at No. 134 standard: Rams DST
My selection at No. 134 PPR: Danny Amendola

Round 13

Round 13 - Standard QB 0% RB 50% WR 50% TE 0% DST 0% K 0%
Round 13 - PPR QB 0% RB 0% WR 0% TE 0% DST 80% K 20%

In the standard league, we didn't have to worry about a DST here, so we had our final position player spot to fill. It made sense to handcuff Murray with Lance Dunbar, who could have a big role for the Cowboys this season as a change-of-pace rusher. If Murray got hurt, the Cowboys would likely use Dunbar and Joseph Randle in tandem, but Dunbar could stand alone as a quality role player in Dallas this year. In the PPR league, we took a kicker in Phil Dawson over our DST. I targeted the Saints DST and Texans DST at this spot with the owner at No. 12 still needing a DST. Instead, I went with my No. 2 overall kicker in Dawson and settled for the Texans DST in the next round. This move gave me the player I wanted in Dawson while also landing a DST that I'm happy with.

Players you can get here (standard): Lance Dunbar, Martellus Bennett, Phil Dawson, Matt Prater, Bears DST
Players you can get here (PPR): Phil Dawson, Saints DST, Matt Bryant, Texans DST, Bryce Brown
My selection at No. 155 standard: Lance Dunbar
My selection at No. 155 PPR: Phil Dawson

Round 14

Round 14 - Standard QB 0% RB 0% WR 0% TE 0% DST 0% K 100%
Round 14 - PPR QB 0% RB 0% WR 0% TE 0% DST 100% K 0%

Matt Prater was our kicker of choice here, and he should again be stellar. He was No. 2 in Fantasy points in a standard league in 2013, and playing in an offense led by Peyton Manning is great for kickers. In the PPR league, the Saints DST was drafted by the owner at No. 12, leaving me with the Texans. I like the Texans DST this season with the addition of Jadeveon Clowney and healthy return from Brian Cushing (knee). Having Romeo Crennel as the defensive coordinator will help, and that J.J. Watt guy is pretty good as well.

Players you can get here (standard): Matt Prater, Bears DST, Steven Hauschka, Matt Bryant, Justin Tucker
Players you can get here (PPR): Texans DST, Bryce Brown, Matt Prater, Mason Crosby, Steven Hauschka
My selection at No. 158 standard: Matt Prater
My selection at No. 158 PPR: Texans DST

The two teams

Standard PPR
QB Matt Ryan QB Andrew Luck
RB DeMarco Murray RB Montee Ball
RB Le'Veon Bell RB Toby Gerhart
WR Vincent Jackson WR Dez Bryant
WR Golden Tate WR Michael Crabtree
FLEX Eric Decker FLEX Percy Harvin
TE Julius Thomas TE Jason Witten
K Matt Prater K Phil Dawson
DST Rams DST Texans
Reserve Khiry Robinson Reserve Cam Newton
Reserve Andre Williams Reserve Darren Sproles
Reserve Lance Dunbar Reserve Jeremy Hill
Reserve Reggie Wayne Reserve Tre Mason
Reserve Josh Gordon Reserve Danny Amendola

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Player News
RB DeMarco Murray held to season-low 73 rushing yards
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(8:29 pm ET) NFL rushing leader DeMarco Murray averaged under 4.0 yards per carry for the first time this season in the Cowboys' Thanksgiving loss to the Eagles. Murray carried 20 times for a season-low 73 yards (3.7 ypc) but did punch in a 1-yard touchdown, his first score since Week 7.

Murray tied his season high with six catches for 40 yards. It was the fourth time this year he's hauled in six passes.

Murray, who's been held under 100 yards rushing only twice, visits the Bears next Thursday.


Tony Romo's TD streak ends in disastrous performance
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(8:24 pm ET) Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo saw his streak of 38 straight games with a touchdown pass come to an end Thursday against the Eagles. Looking uncomfortable in the pocket and missing some easy throws, Romo completed 18 of 29 passes for 199 yards with two interceptions.

He took four sacks and seemed eager to avoid big hits to his surgically-repaired back.

Both of Romo's interceptions came on underthrown balls, and he also underthrew Dez Bryant on a potential big gainer. But Romo often had no one open to throw to.

He'll try to bounce back next Thursday at Chicago.


Cody Parkey drills four more field goals
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(8:13 pm ET) Eagles rookie kicker Cody Parkey converted all four of his field-goal tries against the Cowboys and is 27 for 29 this season. He was good from 31, 22, 26 and 25 yards. Parkey added three PATs for 15 points.

He'll play the Seahawks in Week 14.


Eagles get offensive contributions Week 13
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(8:08 pm ET) The Eagles got several offensive contributions in their Thursday blowout of the Cowboys. Wideout Riley Cooper caught four of seven targets for 32 yards, and tight end Brett Celek had a 7-yard reception.

Running back Darren Sproles caught all three of his targets for 19 yards and had a 13-yard run. Running back Chris Polk, playing mainly in garbage time, ran 11 times for 49 yards. Receiver Josh Huff added a 7-yard rush.

They'll all play the Seahawks in Week 14.


Jordan Matthews catches fifth TD in last five games
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(8:05 pm ET) Eagles wideout Jordan Matthews continued his productive rookie season in Thursday's win at Dallas, catching four of five targets for 51 yards and a touchdown. It was Matthews' fifth score in the last five games.

On the Eagles' second drive, Mark Sanchez rolled right and hit Matthews for a 27-yard touchdown. Matthews has caught at least four passes in all but three games.

He'll play the Seahawks in Week 14.


Jeremy Maclin posts fourth 100-yard game
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(7:59 pm ET) Eagles wideout Jeremy Maclin reasserted himself Thursday as the team's leading receiver, catching a game-high eight passes for 108 yards. He was targeted a game-high 10 times.

It was Maclin's fourth 100-yard game this season, and it put him over 1,000 receiving yards for the first time in his career.

Maclin's biggest play came when he caught a sideline route and cut all the way across the field for a 58-yard gain. That set up a field goal on Phillys' third drive.

Maclin plays the Seahawks in Week 14.


LeSean McCoy busts out on Thanksgiving
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(7:52 pm ET) Eagles RB LeSean McCoy busted out for a season-high 159 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries in Thursday's win at Dallas. McCoy sprinted 35 yards around right end on his second rush and averaged 6.4 yards per carry on the day.

Midway through the third quarter, McCoy used a vicious stiff-arm to scoot 38 yards for a touchdown, his third score in the past four games and fourth this season. McCoy has run for 289 yards over the past two weeks. He was not targeted in the passing game.

McCoy coughed up his second fumble of the season, but it didn't matter in this blowout. He plays the Seahawks in Week 14.


Eagles QB Mark Sanchez has big first half in easy win
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(7:48 pm ET) Eagles quarterback Mark Sanchez did almost all his damage in the first half of Thursday's 33-10 rout at Dallas, throwing for 202 yards and accounting for two touchdowns. He finished 20 of 29 for 217 yards and a touchdown and ran five times for 29 yards and another score.

After committing six turnovers in his previous two games, Sanchez did not have a turnover Thursday.

Sanchez came out on fire. He led the Eagles to 80- and 88-yard touchdown drives on their first two possessions. Sanchez capped the first march with a 2-yard keeper off a zone read, and he ended the second with a 27-yard scoring strike to rookie Jordan Matthews.

Sanchez plays the Seahawks in Week 14.


Eagles TE Trey Burton leaves with hamstring injury
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(7:22 pm ET) Eagles tight end Trey Burton, who plays mainly on special teams, left the game against the Cowboys in the fourth quarter with a hamstring injury.

Frank Gore among 49ers probables active Thursday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(7:21 pm ET) Six players listed as probable for Week 13 on the 49ers' final injury report are active Thursday, including running backs Frank Gore (knee) and Bruce Miller (shoulder), safeties Eric Reid (ankle) and Raymond Ventrone (groin), defensive tackle Justin Smith (back) and wide receiver Brandon Lloyd (quad).

Gore struggled in Week 12, managing just 36 yards on 13 carries, but he wasn't thought to be in danger of missing the key NFC West battle.


 
 
 
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