Injuries play a key part in our decision making process for daily fantasy games. The opportunity created for low cost players on offense and the match up opportunities to exploit on defense can be the difference between winning and losing. This article will try to list all the injuries that could create value for your fantasy rosters and the likelihood that each event will occur.
Darren Fells (TE) – The Arizona TE looks to be out for 2-3 weeks. Jermaine Gresham should see the bulk of the snaps now and could be a sneaky cheap option to look for.
Tyrod Taylor (QB) – Many thought Taylor would be good to go this week, but the Bills announced him as out already. We are going to see another start for EJ Manuel who was cheap and had a good showing last week.
Sammy Watkins (WR) – Watkins has also been ruled out already. While the WR snaps will be split, the beneficiary of no Watkins has been more targets for Charles Clay at TE.
Zach Zenner (RB) – The Lions lost Zenner to a rib injury this week. It creates a clearer path to carries for guys like Abdullah, Bell, and Reddick who are all in a committee for the Lions at RB.
Cecil Shorts (WR) – Shorts has been ruled out for week 7. The beneficiary should be DeAndre Hopkins who is already seeing a ton of targets in this offense.
UPDATE: Shorts is out, but Nate Washington is back in. Washington and Hopkins should see a lot of targets in this one.
Jamaal Charles (RB) – Charles is out for the year. Charcandrick West is the main guy to try and replace him. He did not do much last week, so Knile Davis also has to be in consideration.
Mike Vick (QB) – He did not practice and is not expected to this week. It looks like Landry Jones will start if Roethlisberger is unable to get into game shape and be cleared to play.
Bilal Powell (RB) – Powell has a bum ankle that kept him out of practice on Wednesday. If he can’t go, we should see Zac Stacy take the third down role.
UPDATE: Powell is out and Stacy and Ivory will be the two RBs the Jets roll with.
WHO TO KEEP AN EYE
John Brown (WR) – Brown tweaked his hamstring at practice on Thursday and missed Friday. There is a real chance he could be out on Sunday, but we do not have any confirmation on that yet. If he can not go, Michael Floyd becomes a great play at near minimum price. It’s tough to know what to do here as we probably will not have confirmation until after lock with this game being on Monday night.
Justin Forsett (RB) – Forsett ssat out Wednesday’s practice after sitting out most of last week. He was able to play Sunday though and I would look for that to be the case again. While he is likely to play, it is still a situation worth keeping an eye on. Javorius Allen would benefit if Forsett is going to be out.
UPDATE: Forsett is no longer listed on the injury report and looks like he will be a go for Sunday.
Duke Johnson (RB) – Johnson hurt his shoulder last week, but all indications are he will be ready to suit up for Sunday.
Gary Barnidge (TE) – Barnidge suffered an ankle injury and sat out Wednesday’s practice. The coaches said it was precautionary and he should be good to go on Sunday.
UPDATE: He practiced in Full Thursday and Friday. Barnidge is a full go for this weekend.
Brandon Pettigrew (TE) – He did not practice Wednesday and his status is uncertain for this weekend. He has already lost passing down work to Tim Wright, so this is not a huge blow for fantasy. As long as Ebron is out still, he may see a few snaps if he plays, but mostly as a blocker.
UPDATE: Pettigrew is out, which makes Ebron an every down TE option again.
Ameer Abdullah (RB) – He had a stinger and a fumble, both of which contributed to him being on the bench late in their last game. He sat out Wednesday, but is expected to play Sunday.
UPDATE: Abdullah is fine and will play. Joiqu Bell is also making his return and Theo Riddick is active. The RB situation is crowded again in Detroit.
Eric Ebron (TE) – He was limited in practice Wednesday, but is expected to be in for Sunday. If he goes, he will be the primary TE and steal snaps from Tim Wright who has been a decent minimum priced replacement while he was out.
UPDATE: Ebron is in and will reclaim his starting spot at the TE position. He should see a lot of targets and makes for a solid cheap option at TE.
Allen Robinson (WR) – He was limited in practice on Wednesday, but said in interviews afterwards that he is fully expecting to play Sunday.
UPDATE: He returned to practice Thursday and Friday, so he looks like he will be fine for Sunday.
T.J. Yeldon (RB) – Yeldon sat out again Wednesday after missing all last week. There is no word one way or the other, but if he can go, we should see a lot of Toby Gerhart with some Denard Robinson mixed in.
UPDATE: Yeldon is not 100% and has a tough match up, but he is likely to play. Toby Gerhart is no longer an option here, but I’m not sure Yeldon is a guy to use either.
Jeremy Maclin (WR) – Maclin left week 6 with a concussion and is in the league’s protocol. If he can not make it back before Sunday, Albert Wilson will likely be the #1 WR with Travis Kelce being the guy who should benefit with increased targets.
UPDATE: Maclin passed the concussion protocol and looks ready to go Sunday. Travis Kelce will be the one who suffers as the huge game with tons of targets for him no longer looks likely.
Mike Wallace, Charles Johnson, Jarious Wright (WR) – All the Vikings WR look to be active for this weekend, but Stefon Diggs should still see the majority of the snaps at WR. He is the best option of the bunch even with the whole crew back in action.
UPDATE: All of the WRs are in. t’s tough to know what coach Tice will do here. Rumblings of Diggs working as a WR4 created a stir in the DFS community this weekend. Diggs was back as a WR in the 3 wide sets Friday, but the targets and snaps for all of these guys are unpredictable.
Dion Lewis (RB) – Lewis has an abdominal injury that was a reason he did not have a huge week 6. He was held out of practice Wednesday and it is worth watching. If he does not go, it really ticks up LaGarette Blount as a play.
UPDATE: He is listed as questionable and only practiced on a limited basis all week. This game sets up better for him as the Patriots are expected to throw a lot. He would be the lead back over Blount in that case, but we are sure he is not 100%. It’s always tough to figure out the Patriots RB situation and the injury news here leaves a lot of things up in the air.
Brandon LaFell (WR) – Returned to practice Wednesday and should take over the WR role very soon. It’s not a guarantee he sees all the snaps, but he should be in there. He had good numbers last year and should see single coverage with teams worried about some of the other Patriot weapons.
UPDATE: As of now, LaFell is still not on the active roster. That means we could see another big game from Danny Amendola here as a WR2.
Marques Colston (WR) – He is likely to miss again this week. Willie Snead has already usurped his snaps anyway, so this is not huge news.
Nelson Agholor (WR) – Agholor missed practice again Wednesday and is still in doubt after missing last week. Jason Huff and Riley Cooper handled a lot of the WR duties in his absence.
UPDATE: He is out again, which benefits Riley Cooper the most.
Riley Cooper (WR) – Cooper has been dealing with a knee issue for a few weeks. He played with it Monday, banged it up, but quickly returned. He should be good to go this week if he can get a practice or two in.
UPDATE: Cooper practiced Friday and is in a good spot here with Agholor ruled out.
Ben Roethlisberger (QB) – He got some throwing in Wednesday, but is still highly questionable for this weekend. Landry Jones has taken most of the first team reps and looks to be in line to start Sunday.
UPDATE: Big Ben is lobbying hard to be on the field. As of now, Landry Jones is still scheduled to tart. I think it stays that way, but you never know if Ben can convince the coaches he belongs in.
Melvin Gordon (RB) – Gordon sat out Wednesday’s practice, but all indications are he will be good to go Sunday.
UPDATE: He practiced Thursday and Friday, so he should be available. We have heard he may be limited as well, so be careful using him. The fact he is in though will hurt Woodhead and Oliver who were in line for increased workloads.
Keenan Allen (WR) – Allen has a hip injury that had him limited late in the game week 6. He missed practice Wednesday, so it is a concern. He is on track t play Sunday though, so we need to keep an eye on this one.
UPDATE: Practiced on a limited basis Friday. Word is he is going to play, but may be limited. That’s not a good sign for a guy who willl be expensive here.
Stevie Johnson (WR) – Johnson did practice Wednesday which is good news with Allen banged up. He looks ready to get back on the field this weekend and should be a big part of the offense again.
UPDATE: Practiced in full Friday and will play Sunday.
ANTONIO GATES (TE): This was a new addition to the injury report mid-week. Gates did not practice all week. Coach said he can play without practicing, but Gates said he might not be ready to go. It’s never good when the player is saying that, so I would definitely monitor this situation. If Gates is out, Ladarius Green makes a great play against the team allowing the most fantasy points to TEs this year.
Tavon Austin (WR) – It’s a major concern that Austin missed Wednesday considering they were coming off a bye. His status is in doubt for this weekend and would be a major blow to that passing attack.
UPDATE: Still nothing solid to report here. He practiced on a limited basis Thursday and Friday and is still questionable with a hand injury. We do not know one way or another what will happen here yet.
Austin Sefarian-Jenkins (TE) – He sat out again Wednesday and looks doubtful. The Bucs hoped to have him back this week, but it seems he may not be ready. There is no direct swerve here, but Evans and Jackson on the outside will soak up the extra targets.
UPDATE: It looks like Jenkins will be out again this weekend. He did not practice all week and is not ready to return. The targets will go to the WRs as we have no real TE swerve worth noting or starting.
Marcus Mariota (QB) – Mariota has a knee injury which looks somewhat concerning. He wants to play, but it looks like we may get a start from Zach Mettenberger this week. Nothing is certain yet, but he did miss practice on Wednesday.
UPDATE: Mariota is out, which mean Mettenberger gets to start again. His numbers in most of starts last year were ok, so this is not as big a blow as many are acting like it will be.
Jordan Reed (TE) – The one good piece of news is that Reed is likely to make his return this week. If so, Derek Carrier is no longer a cheap punt play option. He was limited, but did participate on Wednesday.
UPDATE: He is still listed as questionable, but is likely to play. Reed sees 7-10 targets a game when in, so it would be a good spot to use him if we have some more news before Sunday. He did not practice much this week, so it’s still a little risky. Carrier is no longer in play if Reed does go.
DeSean Jackson (WR) – D Jax is looking doubtful again this week. If he sits, we should see more Jamison Crowder who has been a solid cheap play.
UPDATE: Jackson is again out. Crowder will continue to see more snaps and targets in his absence.
Chris Thompson (RB) – Thompson joined D Jax on the sidelines Wednesday. Thompson was banged up in the game vs. the Jets last weekend. He has been a really nice passing down option for the Skins and it would hurt if they lost him with Matt Jones already banged up as well.
UPDATE: It looks likely Thompson will miss this game. This benefits Matt Jones the most as he will see the third down and passing game work that was Thompson’s. Thompson saw a good deal of targets, some of which may go to Reed as well in his return.
Matt Jones (RB) – He returned to practice on Wednesday and was said to look good. He should be available for Sunday this week.
UPDATE: Jones is back and in line for an expanded role with thompson on the shelf here.