Fantasy Injury Ward Redux – Week 14

Dr. Dave Pratt breaks down injuries of notable fantasy football players heading into Week 14 of the Regular Season.

| 2 years ago
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Fantasy Injury Ward Redux – Week 14


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The unusually high occurrence of organ injuries from Week 13 has spilled over into Week 14. Brandon Marshall suffered two fractured ribs and a collapsed lung during Thursday’s game—likely ending his season. Hopefully this trend does not continue for the rest of this week’s games. The following is a breakdown of all the injuries of notable fantasy football players heading into Week 14.

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.

 

Quarterbacks

Zach Mettenberger suffered a Grade 1 right acromioclavicular (AC) joint sprain during last Sunday’s game. This injury to his throwing arm is also commonly referred to as a separated shoulder. His primary impairments are pain with activity and having an overhead-reaching active range of motion deficit. Because this is a low-grade injury, Mettenberger has a reasonable chance of playing in Week 14.

However, if he doesn’t quickly regain his full active throwing range of motion, he will be out in Week 14. It’s also worth noting that if he lands hard on his right shoulder in the coming weeks, this injury could significantly worsen—which would cause him to miss playing time.  Saturday Update: Mettenberger was a limited participant in practices throughout the week. He will be active for Sunday’s game against the Giants. He is barely a top-25 quarterback for this fantasy-playoff week, so he is only playable in deep 2-QB leagues.

Ben Roethlisberger suffered a hand injury in Week 13. There are unconfirmed reports that he has a fractured right hamate bone. Saturday Update: Roethlisberger is on the Steelers’ injury report for a “not injury related” issue—despite the fact he admitted to hurting his hand in Week 13. It is still speculation to whether or not he suffered a fractured hamate bone. In terms of his fantasy value, this is essentially a non-story. This type of fracture does not require surgical repair or immobilization of the wrist joint. Its primary limiting factors are swelling and pain.  Because Roethlisberger was a full participant in Thursday and Friday’s practices, it’s safe to assume he is not limited by swelling or pain. In sum, he is expected to start on Sunday. He is a top-15 quarterback for Week 14.

 

Running Backs

Montee Ball has yet to return to practice after aggravating his Grade 2 groin strain in Week 11. C.J. Anderson will continue to lead the Broncos backfield. Saturday Update: Ball did not practice this week. His fantasy value for the rest of the season is virtually zilch.

Reggie Bush has been inactive for the past two games due to a chronic ankle injury—which seems to be a high ankle sprain. He was a limited participant in last week’s practices, but was inactive in Week 13. He has logged in some practice time this week, and the Lions are expecting him to play in Sunday’s game against the Buccaneers. Considering how conservative the Lions’ medical staff has been with his return, it’s reasonable to expect his ankle to be adequately healed. Saturday Update: Bush fully participated in all of this week’s practices, and he will get the green light to play in Week 14. Joique Bell will continue to be the Lions’ primary between-the-tackles ball carrier, and he will likely lead the backfield in touches. For this reason, Bush is outside the top-30 running backs for this week.

Isaiah Crowell sustained a hip injury in Week 13. Saturday Update: Crowell did not practice on Wednesday, but was upgraded to a limited participant for Thursday and Friday’s practices. He is listed as questionable for Week 14. He is truly a game-time decision. His fantasy owners are advised to check his game status prior to kickoff. If he plays, he is a solid RB2.

Andre Ellington suffered a hip pointer during Sunday’s game. Coach Bruce Arians said Ellington’s hip pointer is “severe.” A hip pointer is a contusion to the brim of the pelvis, the iliac crest, and symptoms can include: localized muscle spasms, intense pain, decreased strength and reduced range of motion. Swelling and stiffness of the injured region typically worsens for 48 hours following onset. If the swelling becomes severe, a nerve located in the hip region could become irritated, and further impairments would result. Therefore, it’s difficult to gauge the severity of a hip pointer injury until the second or third day following its onset. Saturday Update: Ellington did not practice this week, and he has been ruled out for Sunday’s game.

Justin Forsett suffered a knee injury in Week 13. On Monday, he dismissed the injury as being anything serious. Saturday Update: Forsett did not practice on Wednesday and Thursday. He was then upgraded to a limited participant for Friday’s practice. He is officially listed as questionable for Week 14, but he is expected to play. Nevertheless, his fantasy owners are advised to check his game status prior to kickoff. If he plays, he is a borderline top-10 running back this week.

Ronnie Hillman suffered a midfoot sprain in Week 10, and he has been out since. It’s reasonable to believe he has a Lisfranc injury. Saturday Update: Hillman did not practice this week, and he will be out for Week 14. Just like his teammate Montee Ball, Hillman has no fantasy value for the rest of the season.

Rashad Jennings suffered an ankle injury in Week 13. It’s unclear from the game footage whether he suffered a high ankle sprain or a low ankle sprain. Saturday Update: Jennings did not practice on Wednesday or Thursday. He was then upgraded to a limited participant on Friday, but was reportedly hobbled during that practice. His progression throughout the week is consistent with a low-level high ankle sprain or a high-level low ankle sprain—both are problematic multiple-week injuries. Jennings will be a game-time decision this week. If he is active for Sunday’s game, he will split the workload with Andre Williams. All in all, Jennings is unplayable for Week 14—considering it’s a fantasy-playoff week.

Jerick McKinnon has been dealing with a low back injury for the past few weeks. His condition worsened during the Vikings’ matchup against the Packers in Week 12. He was a practice non-participant and an inactive in Week 13. His exact diagnosis is still unknown, and it could be anything from a lumbar intervertebral disc issue to recurrent muscle spasms. Therefore, an accurate prognosis cannot be made. Saturday Update: McKinnon did not practice this week. His back injury now appears to be more serious than initially thought. An educated guess of his injury would include: a symptomatic bulging or herniated lumbar intervertebral disc. He has already been declared out for Sunday’s game. His fantasy owners will be without his services for Week 14—and possibly the rest of the season.

Latavius Murray suffered a concussion during his breakout game in Week 12, and was then inactive in Week 13. He cleared the NFL concussion protocol on Tuesday, per 95.7 The Game’s John Middlekauff. Saturday Update: Murray was a full participant in Thursday and Friday’s practices. Barring any setbacks, he is expected to play on Sunday. He is just outside the top-30 running backs for Week 14.

Shane Vereen is dealing with an ankle injury. He played in Week 13 with the same injury, and he did not appear to exacerbate the injury during that game. Saturday Update: Vereen has been a limited participant in practices throughout the week. He is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, but is expected to play. He is a top-30 running back for Week 14.

DeAngelo Williams has an unspecified fractured bone in the third finger of his right hand. He will likely be inactive in Week 14. Saturday Update:  As expected, Williams has been ruled out for Sunday’s game against the Saints. Jonathan Stewart is now an interesting player for daily fantasy contests in Week 14.

 

Wide Receivers

Miles Austin suffered a kidney injury during last Sunday’s game. He was hospitalized in Buffalo on Sunday night, and he was not released until Wednesday. There is virtually no chance he will be cleared to play in Week 14—and possibly for the rest of the season. Saturday Update: Austin has been placed on injured reserve. He is done for the season.

Julian Edelman aggravated his preexisting thigh injury in Week 13. Saturday Update: Edelman has been a limited participant in practices throughout the week. He is listed as questionable for Week 14, but is expected to play. If he plays, he is a high-end WR3.

Larry Fitzgerald suffered a Grade 2 MCL (knee) sprain in Week 11, and he has since been inactive. It typically takes a receiver a total of three-to-four weeks to return to play after suffering this injury.

He was a limited participant in last Friday’s practice—while still wearing a knee brace. Until his knee is able to sufficiently absorb the forces of quick lateral movements without the assistance of a brace, he will not be on the field during game days. Saturday Update: Fitzgerald was a limited participant in Wednesday and Thursday’s practices, and he was then upgraded to a full participant on Friday. He will be a game-time decision on Sunday, and he is more likely than not going to play. However, if he is active on Sunday, he is virtually unplayable in all fantasy formats.

Brian Hartline suffered a knee injury during Monday’s game.  Luckily for him, it was only a mild bruise. He is expected to play in Week 14. Saturday Update: Hartline is expected to play in Sunday’s game. He is virtually unplayable this week in all fantasy formats.

Justin Hunter suffered a lacerated spleen in Week 13.  On Tuesday, he was placed on injured reserve. He is finished for the season.

DeSean Jackson suffered a fibula contusion (i.e. bruise) during last Sunday’s game. Saturday Update: Jackson’s contusion is more severe than what was initially thought. The primary limiting factor associated with this injury is pain. It appears his pain with activity is still quite high—as he was unable to practice at all this week. He will be a game-time decision on Sunday. The Redskins are reportedly expecting him to be inactive. If he does play, his fantasy owners should avoid starting him due to the high risk that his lateral quickness would be significantly reduced.

Brandon LaFell is still dealing with a shoulder injury. He did not appear to exacerbate his preexisting shoulder injury during Week 13. Saturday Update: LaFell has been a limited participant in practices throughout the week. He is listed as questionable for Week 14, but is expected to play. If he plays, he is a mid-level WR2.

Brandon Marshall suffered a significant rib injury during Thursday’s game. He sustained two broken ribs and a pneumothorax (i.e. collapsed lung), as reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter. His collapsed lung has been treated successfully. He will suffer no long-term effects from this injury, but he will be out for the rest of this season.

Torrey Smith was spotted limping in the locker room following last Sunday’s game.  On Monday, coach John Harbaugh stated Smith’s injury was not severe. No further information was given regarding Smith’s health. Saturday Update: Smith is on the Ravens’ injury report with a right knee injury. He did not participate in Wednesday and Thursday’s practices, but was a full participant on Friday. He is listed as probable, and he is expected to play on Sunday.  He is a borderline top-30 wide receiver for Week 14.

Sammy Watkins injured a hip during Sunday’s game. His diagnosis is unknown at this time. Coach Doug Marrone describes Watkins as day-to-day. His practice participation on Wednesday will shed more light on the extent of his injury. Saturday Update: Watkins was a limited participant in practices throughout the week, and he is listed as probable for Sunday’s game against the Broncos. He is a solid WR3 for Week 14.

Roddy White is dealing with an ankle injury. His exact diagnosis or mechanism of injury is still unknown. He did not practice last week, and he was inactive in Week 13. Coach Mike Smith is expecting him to play in Week 14. He remains to be questionable for Monday’s game. Saturday Update: White did not practice on Thursday and Friday. He was then upgraded to a limited participant on Saturday. Officially, he is listed as questionable for Week 14. Because he did not log a full practice this week, and his game is on Monday, his fantasy owners are advised to bench him this week.

Kendall Wright fractured a bone in his hand during Wednesday’s practice. He has since been spotted wearing a splint on his injured hand. Saturday Update: Wright was a non-participant in Thursday and Friday’s practices. He is listed as questionable for Week 14, and he is expected to be inactive for Sunday’s game.

 

Tight Ends

Dwayne Allen suffered an ankle injury in Week 11, and he has since been inactive. The mechanism of his injury is consistent with a high ankle sprain. Coach Chuck Pagano is confident Allen will play in Week 14. Considering the Colts waived tight end Weslye Saunders on Tuesday, Allen’s return to the field appears to be imminent. Nevertheless, until he participates in consecutive practices this week, it’s difficult to trust he will be available for Week 14. Saturday Update: Allen was a full participant in practices throughout the week. He is expected to play on Sunday.

Jace Amaro was inactive in Week 13 due to having a concussion. He will need to clear the NFL concussion protocol prior to being cleared to return to football-related activities. Saturday Update:  Amaro has been ruled out for Week 14.

Jordan Cameron suffered a concussion in Week 8, and he has since been inactive. Saturday Update: Cameron met with an independent neurologist on Friday. It’s unknown if he received full medical clearance to play on Sunday. He is questionable for Week 14. His fantasy owners should check his game status prior to kickoff.

Charles Clay continues to be limited by a hamstring/knee injury. His exact diagnosis is still unknown. He was a limited participant in last Thursday’s practice, but was downgraded to a non-participant for the rest of that week.  He was then inactive in Monday’s game. Saturday Update: Clay was limited in Friday’s practice, and has been listed as questionable for Week 14. His fantasy owners should look to safer options this week.

Greg Olsen is dealing with a chronic knee issue. The knee swelled up during the week, so he missed some practice time. Saturday Update: Olsen was a limited participant in Thursday and Friday’s practices. He is listed as questionable, but is expected to play on Sunday. He is a TE1 for Week 14.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins was inactive in Week 13 due to a back injury. His exact diagnosis and mechanism of injury are unknown. Saturday Update:  Seferian-Jenkins did not practice this week. He is listed as questionable, but is expected to be inactive in Week 14.  At this time, he should be dropped in all non-dynasty fantasy leagues.

Julius Thomas has been inactive since Week 11 due to an ankle injury. He was a limited participant in last Thursday and Friday’s practices. Thomas believes he is close to a return. Saturday Update: Thomas was a limited participant in practices for the entire week. He is listed as questionable for Week 14, and he will be a game-time decision. Because he plays in an afternoon game, his fantasy owners need to be sure they have a backup plan for if he is declared out. If they don’t, they should be willing to play a tight end in one of the early games instead of Thomas.

 

Defensive Linemen

Robert Ayers tore a pectoral muscle during Week 13. He is done for the season.

Allen Bailey suffered a concussion during Week 13. He will need to clear the NFL concussion protocol prior to returning to play. He has been ruled out for Week 14.

Nick Fairley suffered a sprained MCL and PCL in Week 8. He is expected to be inactive in Week 14, and he may miss the rest of the season.

Sharrif Floyd is probable for Week 14 with a knee injury.

Brett Keisel suffered a torn triceps in Week 13. He has been placed on injured reserve. He is done for the season.

Mathias Kiwanuka was placed on injured reserve on Tuesday due to his knee injury. He is done for the season.

Domata Peko suffered an elbow injury in Week 13. He was a limited participant in Friday’s practice. He is questionable for Week 14.

Jeremiah Ratliff was inactive in Week 13 and Week 14 due to a knee injury.

 

Linebackers

Anthony Barr suffered a knee injury during Week 13. MRI found no structural damage in the knee. He is doubtful for Week 14.

Vontaze Burfict is still recovering from his arthroscopic knee surgery. He has been ruled out for Week 14.

Jadeveon Clowney missed Week 13 due to his chronic knee injury. He received a second opinion from Dr. James Andrews on Wednesday. Clowney has been scheduled to have a season-ending surgery on the knee. He is headed for the injured reserve.

Karlos Dansby suffered a knee injury in Week 11, and he is expected to miss three to four weeks. He is questionable for Week 14.

 

Defensive Backs

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

Vontae Davis suffered a concussion during Week 13. He will need to clear the NFL concussion protocol prior to returning to play. He is out for Week 14.

Cortland Finnegan suffered an ankle injury during Week 10, and he has since been inactive. He is doubtful for Week 14.

Kareem Jackson suffered a sprained MCL (knee) in Week 9. He’s expected to miss three-to-four weeks in total. He is probable for Week 14.

Johnathan Joseph suffered a mild strain of his Achilles tendon in Week 13. He is questionable for Week 14.

Brandon Meriweather is doubtful for Week 14 with a toe injury.

Sam Shields suffered a concussion during Week 13. He will need to clear the NFL concussion protocol prior to returning to play. He is questionable for Week 14.

Aqib Talib is questionable for Week 14 due to a hamstring strain.

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