Andre Ellington starts, Rashard Mendenhall inactive; adjust fantasy lineups

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The injury to Mendenhall could give some clarity to the Arizona running-back situation. We break down the fantasy implications.

Arizona Cardinals running back Rashard Mendenhall will be inactive for the team's game Sunday afternoon against the Atlanta Falcons, sidelined with a toe injury. In his place, rookie Andre Ellington will draw the start.

Mendenhall and Ellington have both gotten plenty of carries for the Cardinals this year. Ellington has 179 rushing yards on 28 carries, plus 190 receiving yards on 20 catches. He has scored once each on the ground and through the passing game. Mendenhall, meanwhile, has 281 rushing yards and three scores, plus 66 receiving yards. In total, Ellington had 369 yards, while Mendenhall has 347.

Fantasy impact: Mendenhall, obviously, has no fantasy value in Week 8, and frankly, doesn't have much going forward. It's nice that Ellington will get the team's starting job, and this likely takes him from a low-end flex to a high-end, but not much beyond that; Stepfan Taylor and Alphonso Smith, backing Ellington up, will get a handful of carries as well, as the team has said many times it doesn't want Ellington to carry a full No. 1 back load.

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