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NFL Nation Fantasy Fallout – When will Kyler Murray, Cooper Kupp return?

It’s a new week into the NFL season, and there’s no shortage of exciting football news to digest.

Every Tuesday during the season, ESPN fantasy analyst Eric Moody will ask our NFL Nation reporters what they think of the aftermath and the most pressing questions heading into the weekend. Who’s ready for a big performance, who’s been affected by injuries, and which roles might change? Here’s what our staff had to say heading into Week 4 about some of the biggest storylines following the Week 3 action.


What are the Arizona Cardinals’ plans for Kyler Murray’s return?

What the Cardinals plan to do with Murray remains to be seen. He is eligible to come off the medically unable to play list on Monday, but coach Jonathan Gannon has repeatedly said Murray will not withdraw until he is ready to practice. Is he ready now? This is uncertain. ——Josh Winvers

How will the Atlanta Falcons passing game evolve in the near future?

It’s hard to say because it may depend on the opponent and the game plan. Falcons head coach Arthur Smith has used a bunch of different offenses depending on his personnel in his two-plus years in Atlanta — a pass-heavy offense in 2021 and a run-heavy offense in 2022. It’s reasonable to assert that the Falcons will throw the ball more often as quarterback Desmond Ridder becomes more comfortable as the starter, but that will start with pass protection, which doesn’t Not good because he had at least one sack in two of his first three games. So if the pass protection is corrected, more passes could happen. But it all starts from here. ——Michael Rothstein

How do the Dallas Cowboys plan to address their offensive woes after a disappointing performance against the Cardinals last week?

The Cowboys didn’t look like they were struggling. They had 15 red zone snaps in three games, the most in the league, but they only scored six touchdowns inside the opponent’s 20-yard line. “We obviously need to get better at that. Someone asked me the other day about being No. 1 in the league in the red zone last year,” coach Mike McCarthy said. “We were 6-4 this time last year. So, 15-6, I’ll accept that. But we’ve got to score more touchdowns.” Last week, New England didn’t give the New York Jets any points in the red zone. Opportunity. When the Cowboys beat the Patriots in 2021, they were just 2-for-5 in the red zone, but they had eight plays of 20 yards or more. They still have one more game to play against the Patriots on Sunday. ——Todd Archer

How concerned are the Jacksonville Jaguars about their offense as they approach Sunday’s game against the Falcons?

Not really, because this is pretty much a top-10 offense in 2022 in yards and points. However, quarterback Trevor Lawrence, TE Evan Engram and WR Christian Kirk all said last week that the biggest question is It’s all self-inflicted: missed goals (leads the league with eight), ill-timed penalties and poor 3-point execution (30 percent). Everything can be solved, they said, so they weren’t panicking. ——Michael DiRocco

How will Cooper Kupp’s return impact the Los Angeles Rams passing game?

Kupp’s return would give the Rams a more balanced offense and give Los Angeles a strong receiver corps with Kupp, rookie Pukana Kua and Tutu Atwell, something they lacked last season. Before Kupp got injured last season, his target share was 31 percent. This season, Nakua has accounted for a high target share without Kupp. When both are healthy and available to play together, it should be a boon for both players. Nacua should still be a strong WR2, though don’t expect his target share to stay anywhere near what it was without Kupp.

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Fantasy consequences of McWilliams’ injury

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What circumstances would prompt the New York Jets to consider a quarterback change on offense?

Publicly, the Jets were very supportive of Zach Wilson, but he led the offense to just three touchdowns on 34 possessions. To be fair, he faced three top-10 scoring defenses in the Bills, Cowboys and Patriots. The Chiefs will play four games Sunday night. That said, some improvements will need to be made in the coming weeks. A switch to Tim Boyle or the newly acquired Trevor Siemian likely wouldn’t have much of an impact, but coach Robert Saleh might make the move for a change and accountability. ——Rich Cimini

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