Fantasy Injury Ward Redux - Week 4
Week 3 was a relatively quiet week in regards to injuries. Nevertheless, heading into this week’s games, many fantasy owners could lose the services of an elite player due to injury. Both Bandon Marshall and Calvin Johnson are dealing with ankle injuries—one is looking much better than the other. Arian Foster’s recent hamstring injury is not a surprise to most of his fantasy owners— considering his lengthy history of hamstring strains. Yet, another elite-fantasy running back is pleasantly surprising his fantasy owners with an unexpectedly early return to the field.
Matt Cassel left last Sunday’s game with a severe foot injury. After the game, Coach Mike Zimmer indicated that Cassel has multiple fractured bones in his foot. It’s worth noting that the mechanism of injury is consistent with that of a Lanfranc fracture. Regardless, Cassel is done for the year. He was place on the Vikings’ IR. Rookie Teddy Bridgewater will now get the nod to be the starting Vikings quarterback.
Robert Griffin III suffered an apparent dislocation of the subtalar joint during Week 2. He will have his ankle immobilized in a hard cast for about 10 days. Then, he will rehabilitate his ankle for four to six weeks, as reported by the Washington Times’ Zac Boyer. As of Wednesday, he had his hard cast replaced with a walking boot, per the Washington Post.
Jake Locker hurt his right wrist during Sunday’s game. He did not practice this week until Friday, when he was a limited participant. Locker is reported to still have noticeable swelling in his right wrist, and he is listed as Questionable for Week 4. Charlie Whitehurst is expected to get the start on Sunday. Update: Jake Locker will be out on Sunday, per Adam Schefter of ESPN.
Joshua McCown injured the thumb on his right hand during the Buccaneers’ Week-3 trouncing from the Falcons. McCown hit his thumb on the helmet of a defender at the end of his throwing motion. One week after that initial injury, he stated that he would likely not require surgery, per ESPN.com’s Pat Yasinskas. McCown is likely dealing with a sprain of the thumb, and he is doubtful for Week 4. Mike Glennon will be the starting quarterback for the Buccaneers on Sunday.
Carson Palmer was ruled out for Week 3, and Drew Stanton was the starting quarterback for the Cardinals. Palmer’s exact diagnosis is unknown. His reported symptoms and mechanism of injury are consistent with chronic burner syndrome. Due to the time he has missed, he likely has a more severe peripheral nerve injury (grade II or III). On Wednesday, Palmer began throwing the ball for the first time in weeks. According to Darren Urban of the Cardinals’ official website, Palmer did not throw any passes beyond 10 yards during Wednesday’s practice. His Week 5 status is questionable.
Jamaal Charles left Week 2 with a high ankle sprain. Coach Andy Reid initially stated that Charles’ ankle sprain was not severe, and NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reported that the MRI of his ankle was “clean.” Charles was very close to being active in Week 3. He was a limited participant in practices throughout this week, and Reid said Charles did “everything” during Saturday’s practice. He is listed as probable for Monday’s game.
He will likely split the backfield workload with Knile Davis on Monday. It is unreasonable to expect Charles to have his full running-down workload back. However, Charles will be in during most of the passing downs. He should be started confidently in all leagues against New England.
Andre Ellington is still suffering from a peroneus longus (i.e. fibularis longus) tendon strain. He has continued to manage the injury conservatively throughout the weeks. He has looked good on the field recently. Expect him to be on the field in Week 5 with fresh legs.
Arian Foster was inactive in Week 3 due to a hamstring strain. Due to his long history of repetitive hamstring strains, this injury could take him longer to recover than the average player. He also has a high risk of reinjuring the hamstring when he returns to play. For these reasons, the Houston training staff will likely be more conservative with his return time.
Foster was a limited participant in practices all this week—just as he was last week. He will be a game-time decision on Sunday. If he does play, it’s unreasonable to expect him to have a full workload. Also, due to the high risk of his hamstring being aggravated during play, his owners should only play him if they have no other viable alternatives. Update: The Texans are planning to play Foster on Sunday, per Adam Schefter of ESPN.
Mark Ingram has suffered a fracture of his hand, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. He is expected to miss at least another 2 weeks.
Maurice Jones-Drew underwent a “minor surgery” on his right hand after Week 1, and he was inactive in Week 2 and 3. He practiced fully on Thursday and Friday. He will be active on Sunday.
Ryan Mathews sprained his MCL (knee) in Week 2. He is expected to miss four to five weeks total. With Danny Woodhead also out, Donald Brown’s workload will be hefty in the coming month.
Doug Martin was inactive in Week 3 due to a knee injury he suffered in Week 1. While his teammates took a shellacking from the Falcons last Thursday, Martin got an extra week to recover. He was a full participant in practices all this week. He will be active on Sunday.
Knowshon Moreno suffered a dislocated elbow during Week 2. He is expected to miss four to eight weeks total. He told teammates he is planning play in Week 6 against the Packers, as reported by the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson. Unfortunately for Moreno, he has minimal control on how fast he can recover from this injury. Lamar Miller will lead the Miami backfield for the time being.
Bernard Pierce was inactive in Week 3 due to a quad injury. He was actually very close to returning for last week’s game. He practiced fully all this week. He will be active on Sunday.
Jonathan Stewart suffered a MCL (knee) sprain in Week 3. This is the same ligament that he sprained last season and caused him to miss the entire month of December. A recurrent sprain of a ligament makes the joint less stable, and it increases the person’s chance of reinjuring the joint and ligament in the future. The grade of this sprain is unknown, so his timetable for return is sometime between one and four weeks. However, because Stewart was a limited participant in Friday’s practice, he will be back sooner rather than later. With Mike Tolbert also currently injured, the now-healthy DeAngelo Williams will be relatively lonely in the Panthers backfield on Sunday.
Ben Tate suffered a MCL sprain (knee) in Week 1. His estimated return time is Week 5 against the Titans. Terrance West and Isaiah Crowell will be the Brown’s primary running backs until his return.
DeAngelo Williams was inactive in Week 3 due to a hamstring injury. He was a full participant in each of this week’s practices. He will be active on Sunday. He will be Carolina’s primary running back in Week 4.
Jarrett Boykin is suffering from both a knee and a groin injury. He is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Bears. His owners should check his game status prior to kickoff. Most of his owners should be able to find better alternatives for this week.
Eric Decker suffered a hamstring strain in Week 2. He played in Week 3 against the Bears, but he left the game early due to discomfort in his injured hamstring. He was a limited participant in Friday’s practice. He is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game. Even if he does play, he will certainly not be able to run and cut like his normal self. He would also be at a high risk of leaving the game early due to an exacerbation of symptoms. In a nutshell, Decker will either be inactive on Sunday, or he will play at a limited capacity. Either way, his owners should look for a safer alternative.
Harry Douglas injured his foot in Week 3. Coach Mike Smith has indicated that the imaging of Douglas’ foot came back negative, per the Falcons’ official website. He was a full participant in Wednesday and Thursday’s practices, but he was limited in Friday’s practice. It appears he had a setback following Thursday’s practice. He is questionable for Sunday.
T.Y. Hilton sprained his ankle during last Sunday’s game. After the game, Coach Chuck Pagano told the media that Hilton’s sprain was not “too severe,” per the Colts’ official website. Hilton was a full participant in Thursday and Friday’s practices. He will be active on Sunday.
Calvin Johnson is on the Lions’ injury report this week with an ankle injury. Despite still being listed as questionable for Week 4, he was a full participant in Friday’s practice. He stated that he expects to play on Sunday. Johnson’s fantasy owners should check his availability prior to kickoff. All current signs indicate he will play. Update: Johnson will be active on Sunday, per Adam Schefter of ESPN.
Marqise Lee has been ruled out for Sunday’s game due to a hamstring injury.
Brandon Marshall has been dealing with an ankle injury for the past three weeks. He was able to play in Week 2—despite being limited in his ability to run and cut at game speed. Then, when he played in Week 3, his injury was exacerbated by a kick to that same ankle. The kick to the ankle made him leave the game temporarily. He has not participated in any practices this week. He is listed as questionable for Sunday, and he will be a game-time decision. His fantasy owners should find a safer alternative to start in Week 4.
Rod Streater suffered a fracture in his foot during last Sunday’s game. It is unclear what type of fracture he suffered. Regardless, Streater will likely be out for six-to-eight weeks.
Vernon Davis left Week 2 with an ankle injury, and he was inactive in Week 3. His MRI results showed a bone bruise. He was a limited participant in practices this week. He is currently listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, and he will be a game-time decision.
It appears he will play. However, because he is in a late-afternoon game, his owners will need to have an available alternative to play in his stead incase he is declared inactive following the pre-game warmups. If his owners do not have an alternative following the early games, Davis is too risky to rely on for Week 4.
Joseph Fauria is out for Sunday’s game against the Jets due to an ankle injury.
Ladarius Green is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game due to a hamstring injury. He was a limited participant at practice on Thursday, and he did not practice on Friday. All signs indicate he will be inactive in Week 4.
Kyle Rudolph left last Sunday’s game with a groin injury. Rudolph suffered a strain (i.e. tear) of soft tissue in the lower abdominal or groin region, per NFL writer Chris Wesseling. This is also known as a sports hernia. He underwent surgery this week, and he will miss about six weeks.
Delanie Walker is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game due to a shoulder injury. He was a limited participant in Thursday and Friday’s practices. He is expected to play this week. Update: Walker will be active on Sunday, per Adam Schefter of ESPN.
Jared Allen did not practice on Friday due to an illness. He is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Packers.
Michael Johnson of the Buccaneers is questionable for Week 4 due to an ankle injury. He will be a game-time decision.
Henry Melton is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game due to a hamstring injury.
Jeremiah Ratliff left Week 2 with a concussion, and he did not play in Week 3. He has yet to complete the NFL concussion protocol. He is out for Week 4.
Sealver Siliga injured his foot in Week 3. On Saturday, he was placed on the Patriots’ IR with a designation to return.
Miles Burris is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game due to a foot injury. Nevertheless, he is expected to play.
Thomas Davis is questionable for Sunday’s game due to a rib injury. He will be a game-time decision.
Jerrell Freeman was ruled out of Sunday’s game due to a hamstring injury.
Jelani Jenkins is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game due to an abdomen injury. He will be a game-time decision.
Brad Jones is recovering from a quadriceps strain. He is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Bears.
Rolando McClain is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game due to a groin strain.
Koa Misi is listed as doubtful for Sunday’s game against the Raiders due to a lingering ankle injury.
Nick Roach missed Week 2 and Week 3 due to a concussion. He is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against the Dolphins in London.
Ryan Shazier suffered a MCL (knee) sprain in Week 3, according to Kevin Patra of NFL.com. It is believed to be a minor sprain. He will likely be out one-to-four weeks. He has already been ruled out for Week 4.
Eric Berry suffered a severe left ankle sprain in Week 2. He was inactive in Week 3, and he has been declared out for Week 4 as well.
Antoine Bethea is listed as questionable for Week 4 due to an ankle injury.
Antonio Cromartie suffered a bone bruise in left knee in Week 3, according to Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com. He is listed as questionable for Week 4.
Johnathan Cyprien has completed the NFL’s concussion protocol. He will be active in Week 4.
Vontae Davis is recovering from an ankle injury. He is listed as probable for Sunday’s game.
James Ihedigbo sat out of Week 2 and Week 3 due his injured neck and knee. He is listed as probable for Week 4.
Johnathan Joseph will be active on Sunday despite his foot injury.