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Raheem Mostert, Jaylen Waddle injury news: What status means for Week 18 vs. Bills

Raheem Mostert and Jaylen Waddle are questionable heading into the Dolphins’ Week 18 season finale. We break down what it means for fantasy football and betting.

Jaylen Waddle #17 and Raheem Mostert #31 of the Miami Dolphins react during the game against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium on September 17, 2023 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

Inactives update: Both Raheem Mostert and Jaylen Waddle are inactive. De’Von Achane and Cedrick Wilson should be the next men up.

The Miami Dolphins host the Buffalo Bills on Sunday Night Football to close out the 2023-24 regular season. The winner claims the AFC East and the AFC’s No. 2 seed in the 2024 NFL Playoffs. If the Bills lose, they would need a Jaguars loss to avoid missing the playoffs. The Dolphins have already clinched at least a wild card berth.

The Bills will have an advantage in the game due to key injuries on the Dolphins roster. Running back Raheem Mostert and wide receiver Jaylen Waddle are not expected to play on Sunday. Both are listed as questionable after missing practice on Wednesday and Thursday and then getting in limited work on Friday. Ian Rapoport reported Sunday morning that both are not expected to play.

Raheem Mostert injury

Fantasy football analysis

This is the second straight week Mostert has sat. De’Von Achane will get the start in his place and is a must-start in any remaining traditional fantasy football leagues. Last week, he rushed for 107 yards, averaging 7.6 yards per carry. He also caught four passes for 30 yards and a touchdown. He’s average eight yards per carry and another 7.4 yards per reception.

In DFS, Achane is the fifth most expensive player in DFS Showdown contests. He’s facing a middle-of-the-pack Bills defense, so there’s some solid upside. Jeff Wilson will get some work, particularly in the passing game, but Achane will be the clear starter. With Waddle also out, Achane will see plenty of work and has some Captain upside.

Jaylen Waddle injury

Fantasy football analysis

Waddle is also missing a second straight game. In last week’s ugly loss to the Ravens, Tyreek Hill saw a huge target load, catching six of 12 targets for 76 yards. The next closest in targets was Achane at five. Among wide receivers, Cedric Wilson followed Hill with two receptions for 27 yards and a touchdown on four targets.

Overall betting analysis

The Dolphins are a 2.5-point underdogs in this game. Missing Mostert and Waddle is why Miami is an underdog. They’ll need a massive game from Tyreek Hill to win outright.