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How to handle Zach Ertz injury in Wild Card round

Zach Ertz may not play this week as he deals with rib and kidney injuries. How should fantasy gamers proceed?

Philadelphia Eagles tight end Zach Ertz celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Washington Redskins in the fourth quarter at FedEx Field.  Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE: Zach Ertz is active.

Eagles tight end Zach Ertz is questionable for the Eagles’ Wild Card game with the Seahawks on Sunday. He is dealing with fractured ribs to go along with a lacerated kidney. Though he is listed as questionable, Ertz was cleared to play on Saturday, according to beat writer Derrick Gunn.

There is no team in the NFL more banged up at its skill positions right now than the Eagles, making the Ertz injury one of extreme priority for this weekend’s DFS slates. Knowing how to proceed, especially given that the Eagles play the final game of the full-weekend slate, will be critical to cashing in on contests. Final inactives will be announced at 3:10 p.m. ET on Sunday.

Fantasy football analysis: Eagles TE Zach Ertz

Ertz has seen prodigious volume for his position when he has been on the field this year. He finished 2019 13th in the NFL in targets, despite missing a game, and has seen particularly high usage in games without Alshon Jeffery. In six games without Jeffery this year, Ertz has averaged 10.7 targets.

His volume could take a little bit of a hit here if he suits up given that he is so banged up, but he still would project as the highest volume play at his position on the slate. This is especially true given the lack of other viable targets in the offense. Ertz is also not likely to be terribly high owned in daily fantasy given his questionable status and the Eagles being the last game of the slate. One strategy worth implementing is rostering Ertz, and then swapping to Dallas Goedert for $800 less if he ends up inactive.

Fantasy football analysis: Eagles TE Dallas Goedert

Speaking of Goedert, he gains plenty if Ertz ends up inactive, but if Ertz plays, Goedert is worth mentioning as a top play at tight end, regardless. The Eagles threw 70% of their passes out of 12-personnel in Weeks 14, 15, and 16. Ertz played in each of those games, and Goedert still managed 24 targets.

Goedert is a must-play if Ertz sits, but still a strong play if Ertz is active.