Fantasy Injury Ward Redux – Week 12

Dr. Dave Pratt breaks down injuries of notable fantasy football players heading into Week 12 of the Regular Season.

| 2 years ago
arian-foster-02a_thearon-w-henderson

Fantasy Injury Ward Redux – Week 12


arian-foster-PED2-150x150We are now in Week 12, the final week of byes. A large number of marquee fantasy players have been listed as out or questionable for this week’s games. For many fantasy owners, winning this week’s game is essential for their playoff hopes. Because of that, it’s critical they are up to date on all of the current injuries of fantasy-relevant players. The following is a breakdown of all the injuries of notable fantasy football players heading into Week 12.

As a reminder, there are five status designations players can have: active, probable, questionable, doubtful and out. The active and out designations are self-explanatory. The probable designation signifies a player has a greater than 50 percent chance of being active for the game. Questionable means the player essentially has a 50-50 chance of playing. Doubtful means the player has less than a 25 percent chance of playing.

 

Running Backs

Matt Asiata is out for Week 12 due to his concussion. He will need to progress through the NFL concussion protocol prior to being cleared to play.

Montee Ball aggravated his recent groin strain in Week 11. Ball initially suffered his Grade 2 groin strain in Week 5, and he was inactive until Week 11. He did not practice this week, and he is expected to miss at least another one to two weeks. For the time being, C.J. Anderson and Juwan Thompson will lead the Broncos backfield. Saturday Update: Ball is officially out for Week 12.

Giovani Bernard has been inactive since Week 8 due primarily to an undisclosed hip injury in conjunction with a clavicle injury. Initially, Bernard was believed to have suffered a hip pointer, a contusion to the iliac crest. However, the length of his recovery is inconsistent with a hip pointer. Nevertheless, regardless of his exact diagnosis, Bernard appears close to returning to play. Saturday Update: Bernard was a full participant in Friday’s practice, and he is listed as probable for Sunday’s game. He is expected to play, and he will split the Bengals’ backfield duties with Jeremy Hill.

Reggie Bush was inactive in Week 11 due to his chronic ankle injury, which seems to be a high ankle sprain. He was a game-time scratch in Week 11. The Lions will likely rest him until they are certain he can return to play without having a significant chance of exacerbating his injury much like they did with Calvin Johnson earlier this season. Saturday Update:  Bush was a limited participant in practices throughout the week. He is officially listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Patriots, but he is not expected to play.

Arian Foster suffered a non-contact groin strain in Week 9. As discussed extensively during the offseason, his injury history has made him more vulnerable to suffering lower extremity soft tissue injuries.

For this very reason, the Texans will not push him to return to play until this groin is fully healed. If his groin strain is not fully healed when he returns to play, he will have a high risk of being reinjured, which would require at least another two to four weeks of rest.

Foster’s fantasy owners should not expect him to play in any meaningful way this week if he does not participate in at least two-consecutive practices. Without seeing him participate in multiple practices this week, it’s ill advised to trust that his groin is adequately healed and that his conditioning is good. Saturday Update: Foster returned to practice on Wednesday as a limited participant, had an apparent setback and then did not participate in Thursday and Friday’s practices. He is officially listed as questionable for Week 12. However, due to his setback, he is actually closer to doubtful than he is questionable for Sunday’s game.  His fantasy owners are advised to start someone else in his stead, such as his handcuff, Alfred Blue.

Ronnie Hillman suffered a midfoot sprain in Week 10. A “midfoot sprain” is a generic term. The most common injury that is termed a “midfoot sprain” is a Lisfranc injury.  Initially, it was encouraging that Hillman was not ambulating in a walking boot after he sustained the foot injury. However, after reports indicated he could miss upward of six weeks, it’s now reasonable to believe he may have a Lisfranc injury.

Regardless of Hillman’s actual diagnosis, one thing is certain: he has virtually no fantasy value for the rest of the season. If by some chance he were to return to play by the end of the NFL regular season, it would be very difficult to trust in his conditioning, the integrity of his foot, and his workload. His fantasy owners can drop him without hesitation.  Saturday Update: As expected, Hillman is out of Week 12.

Fred Jackson was inactive in Week 11 due to his aggravated groin strain. In order for his fantasy owners to be confident his groin is adequately healed, and that his conditioning is good, Jackson will need to participate in consecutive practices this week without having any setbacks. Saturday Update: Jackson did not have any setbacks after practicing on Friday in Detroit. Because the game was moved to Monday night—due to the blizzard in Buffalo—Jackson will have an extra day of rest prior to kickoff. Despite being listed as questionable, Jackson is expected to play on Monday.  He is outside the top-25 running backs for Week 12.

Steven Jackson is probable for Week 12 due to an illness. He practiced fully on Friday, and he is expected to play.

Marshawn Lynch has a “banged up” lower back, according to coach Pete Carroll on Monday. Considering Lynch finished last Sunday’s game, and that he was very productive, rushing for 124 yards, it’s unlikely that he has a significant-enough injury to miss any playing time in Week 12.  Saturday Update: Lynch was a full participant at Friday’s practice. He is listed as probable for Sunday’s game against the Cardinals, and he is expected to play.  His fantasy owners should start him without hesitation.

Doug Martin was inactive for his third-straight game in Week 11 due to an ankle injury. His original mechanism of injury was more consistent with a high ankle sprain than a low ankle sprain—which explains his prolonged absence from play.  He was a limited participant in last Thursday and Friday’s practices, so he will likely return to full practice participation sometime this week. That would bode well for his possible return to play this week. Saturday Update: Martin was a limited participant in practices throughout the week, and he is officially listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Bears. Martin reportedly got the majority of the first-team repetitions during practices this week. He is more likely than not going to play this week. Regardless of his game status, he falls outside the top-30 running backs for Week 12.

Lamar Miller is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Broncos due to a shoulder injury and a knee injury. He has played the last two games despite suffering a left shoulder AC joint sprain in Week 9, so his shoulder is not the limiting injury in this case. His knee injury—which first showed up on the injury report this week—appears to be the one giving him the most problems. He was a full participant in Wednesday’s practice, but was then downgraded to a limited participant on Thursday and Friday. Saturday Update: Miller is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, but he is expected to play. The bad news for his fantasy owners is that he plays in an afternoon game. Therefore, even though Miller is expected to play, his owners are advised to have a back up player on standby just in case he is a game-time scratch. Miller falls outside the top-20 running backs for Week 12.

Jerick McKinnon is listed as probable for Sunday’s game against the Packers due to a back injury. He played last week with the same injury, so he is expected to play again this week.

Latavius Murray suffered a concussion during Thursday’s game. It’s his first diagnosed concussion for his career. Considering he has 10 days until his next game, he has a good chance of not missing any game time.

Trent Richardson is probable for Week 12 due to an illness. He practiced fully on Friday, and he is expected to play.

Khiry Robinson was inactive in Week 11, his fourth-straight missed game, due to a forearm injury. Specifics about the injury are still unknown. Saturday Update: Robinson has been ruled out for Monday’s game.

Charles Sims is questionable for Sunday’s game against the Bears due to an ankle injury. Sims was added to the injury report on Thursday, and he was a limited participant in the final-two practices of the week. Saturday Update: Sims is expected to play on Sunday, but his workload is unknown. Doug Martin got the majority of the first team reps this week. His fantasy owners are strongly advised to bench him in Week 12.

Pierre Thomas suffered a shoulder/rib injury in Week 7, and he has since been inactive. The Saints were optimistic that he would make his return to the field in Week 11, but that was not the case. Saturday Update: Thomas was a limited participant in practices throughout the week, and he is listed as probable for Week 12. He is expected to play in Monday’s game.

Mike Tolbert was activated from the IR/designated-to-return list on Tuesday. The Panthers are on bye this week. Tolbert is expected to make his return to the field in Week 13.

 

Wide Receivers

Larry Fitzgerald suffered a Grade 2 MCL (knee) sprain during Sunday’s game. Even though he was able to finish the game after suffering this injury, Fitzgerald is not guaranteed to be active for Week 12. The symptoms of a soft tissue injury tend to be at their worst 24-48 hours after initial onset, especially stiffness and pain. He will almost certainly be held out of practices this week. The best-case scenario for his Week 12 status is a game-time decision. His fantasy owners are advised to make backup plans because it is likely that he will be inactive or limited in Sunday’s game. Saturday Update: Fitzgerald did not participate in practices this week. He is officially listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, and he is expected to be a game-time decision. Even if he is active, his fantasy owners are advised to keep him on the bench this week.

Justin Hunter is listed as questionable for Week 12 due to a knee injury. He was a full participant in Thursday and Friday’s practices. Saturday Update: Hunter is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Eagles, but he is expected to play. Unfortunately for his owners, he falls outside the top-40 wide receivers for this week.

Alshon Jeffery showed up on the injury report with a hamstring injury on Wednesday, when he did not practice. He was then a limited participant in Thursday’s practice and a full participant in Friday’s practice. Saturday Update: Jeffery is listed as probable for Sunday’s game, and he is expected to play against the Buccaneers.

Greg Jennings is listed as questionable for Week 12. Nevertheless, coach Mike Zimmer is expecting him to play against the Packers on Sunday.

Julio Jones is probable for Week 12 due to an illness. He practiced fully on Friday, and he is expected to play.

Brandon Marshall is listed as probable for Sunday’s game due to an ankle injury. He was given Wednesday off, and then participated in Thursday and Friday’s practices on a limited basis. Saturday Update: Marshall is expected to play on Sunday against the Buccaneers.

Emmanuel Sanders suffered a concussion during Sunday’s game. He will need to complete the NFL concussion protocol prior to being cleared to play. Saturday Update: Sanders has apparently been cleared to play by an independent neurologist. He is listed as probable for Sunday’s game, and he is expected to play.  Still, it’s worth reminding his fantasy owners that symptoms could arise during pre-game warm-ups and therefore cause him to miss the game. It’s essential that his owners check his game status prior to kickoff.

Mike Wallace is listed as probable for Sunday’s game against the Broncos due to a calf strain. He was a limited participant in practices throughout the week. Saturday Update: Wallace is expected to play on Sunday.

 

Tight Ends

Dwayne Allen suffered an ankle injury during Sunday’s game. The mechanism of injury seen in the game film is consistent with a high ankle sprain. After Allen had an MRI on Monday, coach Chuck Pagano indicated that he would likely miss one to two weeks. If this prognosis were true—which is not a guarantee considering it came from a coach— Allen has a mild high ankle sprain. Considering the Colts signed tight end Weslye Saunders to their squad on Tuesday, they are preparing for Allen’s absence in Week 12. Saturday Update: As expected, Allen is officially out for Week 12.

Jordan Cameron suffered a concussion in Week 8, and he has since been inactive. He will need to complete the NFL concussion protocol prior to being cleared to play. Saturday Update: Cameron is officially out for Week 12.

Charles Clay is yet again listed on the injury report with a hamstring injury and a knee injury. He was a limited participant in Wednesday’s practice. Then, he was downgraded to a non-participant for the rest of the week. Saturday Update: Clay is officially listed as doubtful for Sunday’s game. He is expected to sit out this week. Clay’s backup, Dion Sims, becomes a playable option for Week 12.

Jared Cook was a mid-week add-on to the injury report due to a back injury. He did not participate in Wednesday’s practice. Then, he was a limited participant in Thursday and Friday’s practices. Saturday Update: Cook is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game. What is worse for his fantasy owners: he plays in a late game on Sunday.

Jordan Reed strained his hamstring during Sunday’s game. If it is a Grade 1 strain, he has a chance of playing in Week 12. However, if it is a Grade 2 strain, he could miss upward of four weeks, like he did earlier in the season with a hamstring strain. No meaningful information has been given regarding the severity of his injury. Therefore, the only real evidence of the severity of his strain will be his practice participation throughout the week. If he is able to practice multiple days in a row—limited or full participant—then he has a reasonable chance of playing on Sunday. If he doesn’t, his fantasy owners are advised to makes plans to replace him in their starting lineups. Saturday Update: Reed is officially out for Sunday’s game. Niles Paul is a playable option at tight end for Week 12.

Julius Thomas suffered a left ankle injury during Sunday’s contest—luckily not to the ankle he had surgically repaired. He had an MRI on Monday, and the Broncos report that he is considered day-to-day. This indicates Thomas almost certainly does not have any significant structural damage to the ankle and that he avoided suffering a high ankle sprain. If both of those assumptions are correct, Thomas has a reasonable chance of playing in Week 13, but playing in Week 12 would be a stretch. Saturday Update: Thomas was active for Friday’s practice, but reportedly did very little. He is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, but is closer to doubtful in actuality. His fantasy owners should make other arrangements at tight end for this week.

Delanie Walker suffered a concussion during Week 10. He will need to complete the NFL concussion protocol prior to being cleared to play. He was listed as a limited participant in last Saturday’s practice, but an independent neurologist did not clear him prior to Monday’s game. Saturday Update: Walker is listed as probable for Week 12. He is expected to play, barring a return of symptoms during pre-game warm-ups.

 

Defensive Linemen

Nick Fairley suffered a sprained MCL and PCL in Week 8. He is expected to miss four to five weeks in total.

Chandler Jones could miss the rest of the season due to a hip injury. He is out for Week 12.

Ian Williams was placed on IR due to suffering a broken leg. He is done for the season.

 

Linebackers

Navorro Bowman will resume practicing this week. Bowman is still recovering from his recent knee surgery. He has three weeks to be activated. If he is not activated during that time, he will be placed on the season-ending IR.

Vontaze Burfict is still recovering from his arthroscopic knee surgery. He is out for Week 12.

Karlos Dansby suffered a knee injury in Week 11, and he is expected to miss three to four weeks. He is doubtful for Week 12.

Jabaal Sheard suffered an ankle injury during Sunday’s game, and he may miss the rest of the season.

 

Defensive Backs

Robert Alford suffered a wrist injury in Week 11. He is expected to miss two to four weeks.

Cortland Finnegan suffered an ankle injury during Week 10. He was inactive in Week 11, and he is doubtful for Sunday’s game.

Kareem Jackson suffered a sprained MCL (knee) in Week 9. He’s expected to miss three to four weeks.

Troy Polamalu was inactive in Week 10 and Week 11 due to a knee sprain. The Steelers are planning for his return to be in Week 13, the week after their bye.

Carlos Rogers was inactive in Week 11 due to a knee injury. He was inactive for Thursday’s game.

Alterraun Verner was out for Week 11 due to a hamstring injury. He is questionable for Sunday’s game against the Bears.

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