Injury Report: Week 1, Part II

  • No matter how well you do during draft season in your redraft leagues, injuries play a major role in changing the fantasy landscape on a weekly basis. It’s essential to keep tabs on the injury report on a daily basis and we’ll be here to assist. We’ll have two injury reports throughout the week (Thursday & Saturday) that can give a little bit of insight into the different possibilities that exist based on the ultimate injury designation. Let’s take a look at who is on Week 1’s injury report and what it could mean for fantasy.

    Please Note: We will only be looking at the injury designations of the skill-position players on each team.

     

    Sunday Early Slate

     

    Saints @ Falcons

    Saints: OUT: Tre’Quan Smith (groin), Dwayne Washington (hamstring); QUESTIONABLE: Michael Thomas (hamstring)

    Falcons: QUESTIONABLE: Drake London (knee)

    Smith and Washington won’t be available for Sunday’s contest after sitting out of all of the team’s practices this week. Thomas has a shot at returning to the Saints this weekend but remains a giant question mark after sitting out all of last season due to injury. If he does ultimately suit up, he’s slated to be one of the team’s primary WR options alongside rookie first-round pick Chris Olave and free agent acquisition Jarvis Landry. London projects to be the Falcons’ top WR option if he is able to suit up, but rookie WRs are difficult to trust in 12-team leagues out of the gate.

     

    Browns @ Panthers

    Browns: OUT: Michael Woods II (hamstring, illness)

    Panthers (Thursday Practice Report): None

    A pretty clean injury report from the skill position groups for both teams. There is no fantasy action needed based on this news.

     

    49ers @ Bears

    49ers: QUESTIONABLE: George Kittle (groin)

    Bears: DOUBTFUL: Velus Jones Jr. (hamstring)

    The Bears may have caught themselves a break with Kittle unable to practice all week. The blocking he provides will definitely be missed from a run-blocking and pass-blocking perspective while veteran Tyler Kroft will compete for TE targets alongside Ross Dwelley. However, WR Brandon Aiyuk is probably the bigger beneficiary if Kittle sits out and fantasy managers can start the youngster with more confidence if that scenario plays out. Don’t expect to see rookie Jones make an impact in Week 1 regardless of his ultimate availability.

     

    Steelers @ Bengals

    Steelers: PROBABLE: Diontae Johnson (shoulder)

    Bengals: OUT: Devin Asiasi (quad); QUESTIONABLE: Trent Taylor (hamstring), Mitchell Wilcox (ankle)

    Johnson is far and away the most important player of this bunch from a fantasy perspective and he’s trending in the right direction. All signs point to him suiting up on Sunday. There is nothing to see on the Bengals side of things with Tee Higgins and Ja’Marr Chase the clear-cut top receiving options on the squad.

     

    Eagles @ Lions

    Eagles: None

    Lions: None

    All systems go from a skill position perspective.

     

    Colts @ Texans

    Colts: None

    Texans: None

    Nothing of note from a skill position perspective.

     

    Patriots @ Dolphins

    Patriots: QUESTIONABLE: Jakobi Meyers (knee), Ty Montgomery (knee)

    Dolphins: QUESTIONABLE: Salvon Ahmed (heel), Tanner Conner (knee)

    Meyers and Montgomery both remain limited at practice for the Pats, although Meyers is the only true fantasy option in almost all formats with Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson clearly ahead of Montgomery on the depth chart. We can expect both of these Pats to suit up on Sunday. Ahmed and Conner are both buried on the depth chart for the Dolphins so their ultimate playing statuses can be ignored from a fantasy perspective.

     

    Ravens @ Jets

    Ravens: QUESTIONABLE: J.K. Dobbins (ACL recovery)

    Jets: OUT: Zach Wilson (knee)

    We already got word earlier in the week that Wilson would be sidelined for the first four games of the season as he continues to recover from the knee injury. That leaves Joe Flacco as the team’s starting QB and that doesn’t necessarily move the needle for fantasy purposes. Flacco will likely be more accurate, but the Jets wide receiving room is difficult to trust to begin this season regardless of the QB. Elijah Moore would be the preferred option. Dobbins is coming back from an ACL tear and so even if he does play this week, he’ll likely see a reduced workload. He has been limited in both of his team’s practices so far this week. Mike Davis and Lamar Jackson should see more rushing work if Dobbins is ruled out.

     

    Jaguars @ Commanders

    Jaguars: None

    Commanders: QUESTIONABLE: Logan Thomas (knee), Cole Turner (hamstring)

    If starting TE Thomas is ultimately ruled out for Sunday after being limited throughout the week, John Bates could be a cheap dart-throw in DFS circles as he would likely be elevated to the starter. However, there are definitely better streaming TE options on the wire.

     

    Sunday Afternoon Slate

     

    Giants @ Titans

    Giants: None

    Titans: None

    Shepard is just about nine months removed from a torn Achilles, but he has been cleared to play on Sunday. However, he’s at best a dart-throw in DFS given the injury and projected role on a team with a below-average QB.

     

    Chiefs @ Cardinals

    Chiefs: None

    Cardinals: OUT: Rondale Moore (hamstring); QUESTIONABLE: Zach Ertz (calf)

    Moore suffered the hamstring injury during Thursday’s practice according to Aaron Wilson of Pro Football Network. That is really unfortunate considering the fact that the Cardinals are already without suspended DeAndre Hopkins. Marquise Brown is the go-to receiver on this squad while Andy Isabella would likely start in the slot with longtime veteran AJ Green a possible streaming option if Moore misses the game. Ertz also stands to benefit in terms of targets if he is able to play through the calf injury that has kept him limited throughout the week. We’d expect Ertz to be out there come kick-off.

     

    Raiders @ Chargers

    Raiders: None

    Chargers: DOUBTFUL: Donald Parham (hamstring)

    We should not expect Parham to suit up on Sunday, not that it really matters considering the fact that he would be playing behind offseason acquisition Gerald Everett.

     

    Packers @ Vikings

    Packers: DOUBTFUL: Allen Lazard (ankle)

    Vikings: None

    Lazard was stepped on during practice earlier this week and he’ll likely miss Week 1 after not practicing all week. If the projected WR1 is forced to miss game action on Sunday, Sammy Watkins and Romeo Doubs should see additional targets. TE Robert Tonyan will make his return from the ACL recovery, although he’s a very risky TE option given the lengthy layoff and what should be limited work in his first game back.

     

    SNF: Buccaneers @ Cowboys

    Buccaneers: QUESTIONABLE: Chris Godwin (ACL & MCL injury recovery), Russell Gage (hamstring)

    Cowboys: OUT: Michael Gallup (ACL recovery)

    The big story to watch is Godwin, who participated in full on Wednesday and Friday but was held out altogether on Thursday. It’s unfortunate that it’s on Sunday night because that limits the ability to make late-swaps. Godwin is not the safest of starts out there in his first game back from a torn ACL/MCL anyways so perhaps it’s best to play it safe and roll out another WR whose status and role are secure. Gage can be trusted a bit more considering the fact that he practiced in a limited capacity all week, and he should benefit from a target perspective if Godwin is ruled out. However, he’s probably the third WR option in that scenario behind Mike Evans and Julio Jones. Gallup’s absence should allow Dalton Schultz and Noah Brown to see more targets in the passing game, with Shultz shaping up to be one of the better TE options on the week. Tony Pollard should also be more involved with Gallup on the shelf.

     

    MNF: Broncos @ Seahawks

    Broncos (Friday Practice Report): LP: KJ Hamler (knee)

    Seahawks (Friday Practice Report): DNP: Ken Walker III (hernia)

    Hamler is not a great option in fantasy circles for Week 1 given his return from a torn ACL and the new QB in town. However, the speed he provides could eventually pair well with Wilson in Denver and it’s even possible we see that connection start on Monday. The rookie running back on the Seahawks, Walker, appears doubtful for Monday’s season opener, which gives fantasy GMs more confidence in deploying Rashaad Penny as he’s set to be the clear workhorse against the Broncos.

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