Is Trevor Lawrence playing Week 16? Fantasy injury update for Jaguars-Buccaneers

Trevor Lawrence is yet to miss a game in his NFL career despite some close calls, including just a few weeks ago when he suffered a nasty high-ankle sprain and wound up starting the next game. It was looking like his iron-man streak was done when he was placed in concussion protocol ahead of Jacksonville’s Week 16 tilt in Tampa, but there’s renewed hope he can suit up to help the Jaguars — and his fantasy football owners — stay alive for a postseason run. 

Lawrence’s status will be the biggest thing to watch throughout the weekend, and we’ll be here every step of the way to let you know how to handle one of your most important start ’em, sit ’em decisions of the week.

We’ll continue to update this article with news on Lawrence until the official active/inactive report comes out on Sunday around 2:35 p.m. ET, so check back for the latest.


Is Trevor Lawrence playing Week 16? 

UPDATE: NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported Saturday afternoon that Lawrence has cleared concussion protocol and will travel with the team to Tampa, all but locking in his starter status.

UPDATE 2: Lawrence is officially ACTIVE.

Lawrence missed practice on Wednesday and Thursday while in concussion protocol, but he returned for a limited session on Friday, giving him a chance to play against Tampa if he’s cleared in time. Jaguars’ coach Doug Pederson said on Friday that Lawrence’s chances of playing are a “coin flip,” indicating this decision could come down to 90 minutes before kickoff.

Chances are, we’ll know before then whether Lawrence has cleared protocol, but either way, fantasy owners need to be prepared. The Jags and Bucs don’t kick off until 4:05 p.m. ET, so if you plan on waiting for Lawrence — something we suggest — then you’ll need a late-game or Monday backup. The widely available options are relatively limited (Bailey Zappe, Aidan O’Connell, Tommy DeVito), so your best bet is just to grab Jaguars’ backup C.J. Beathard and plan on playing him if Lawrence is out. 

QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | D/STs | Kickers

As we said, Lawrence is worth waiting for at this point. The Buccaneers rank 31st against the pass and are tied for the fifth-most fantasy points allowed to QBs. This is the type of matchup you dream your QB has in the fantasy semifinals, so voluntarily taking Lawrence out of your lineup is a risk you don’t want to take. As long as you have Beathard, who should provide a decent floor given the matchup, or maybe DeVito, who has an even better against Philadelphia’s 31st-ranked QB defense, you should be fine. 

If Lawrence is out, WR Calvin Ridley, TE Evan Engram, and sleeper WR Parker Washington would get slight downgrades, but Ridley and Engram are still borderline must-starts given the matchup and expected targets. Washington would still have boom-or-bust flex upside, but we’d only start him if Lawrence is active. Tampa’s D/ST would also get a bump if Lawrence is out, as it would have slightly more big-play potential.


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