Welcome to the next edition of the Fantasy Football Injury Report (hereinafter referred to as the "Walking Wounded").  There are only four weeks left of the fantasy football regular season, so now is the time to make your push and get your roster ready for crunch time.  By this point in the season, every fantasy GM has likely been affected by injuries in some capacity.  What separates the best from the rest is the ability to overcome such adversity by accumulating depth, managing the waiver wire, and having a little luck (maybe Andrew) on your side.  So, without further adieu, here is this week's edition of the Walking Wounded.

Arian Foster (RB-HOU)

Fantasy GM’s who had already been frustrated by Arian Foster likely vomited in their own mouth watching him leave Sunday night’s game against the Colts after Houston’s first series.  Foster has been nursing injuries all year and now we can add his back to his lengthy list of maladies.  Combining leg injuries with a bad back is a recipe for disaster for a running back.  He can be trusted as much as a lawyer who works for an insurance company.

Darren McFadden (RB-OAK)

Already possessing one of the worst reputations in fantasy in terms of reliability, Darren McFadden has done nothing to dispel that notion.  He has already missed a game this year due to a hamstring injury, and he tweaked it again in this week's loss to the Eagles.  McFadden was removed from the game and didn't return which was probably a wise decision considering the Raiders got the doors blown off of them.  McFadden seems like he is always a risky starting option, and this week is no different.  Monitor his progress throughout the week but keep in mind he will be going up against a Giants' defense that has played well against the run of late.

Giovani Bernard (RB-CIN)

After witnesses a Barry Sanders-like performance from Giovani Bernard last Thursday night, fantasy GM’s gasped as he left the game with a rib injury.  He looked to be in tremendous pain on the sidelines.  In fact, it looked like the kind of pain where he had been forced to watch most of the previous Thursday night games on the schedule thus far.  It is only a matter of time before Bernard is given the lion’s share of carries because he is clearly better than Benjarvus Green-Ellis.  In other words, the Law Firm should be dissolving sooner rather than later.

Darren Sproles (RB-NO)

Saints’ all-purpose running back Darren Sproles left this week’s game against the Jets with a concussion.  It is too soon to tell whether he will be able to play next week, but he will need to go through the concussion protocol and pass all of the tests if he has any shot.  Sproles has been disappointing from a fantasy perspective as he has not been as big a part of the offense as we have been accustomed to.  But then again, the entire Saints’ running game is as useless as a tampon at an old age home.

Andre Brown (RB-NYG)

All indications are that Andre Brown will be activated for the Giants next game against Oakland in Week 10.  Brown will be making his season debut after suffering a leg fracture during the pre-season.  He was supposed to be a nice complement to David Wilson’s explosiveness, but instead Brown will try and help stabilize the Giants dysfunctional running game.  This likely means fewer carries for Peyton Hillis who makes John Olerud look like Usain Bolt.  For the record, I have officially challenged Hillis to a race but he has yet to respond.  Coward.

Justin Blackmon (WR-JAX)

Apparently Justin Blackmon does not watch South Park because he would have known that drugs are bad, mmmkay?  Blackmon has been suspended indefinitely for further violations of the NFL's drug and substance abuse policies.  This came after he already missed the first four games of the season serving a suspension.  It is unfair to judge him personally because if you played for the Jacksonville Jaguars then you would probably abuse various substances as well.  Blackmon is clearly a talented receiver and had benefited from a lot of garbage time statistical accumulation over the past few weeks.  Now that he is gone again, Cecil Shorts and Mike Brown will have more opportunities to pad their stats late in games.

Terrelle Pryor (QB-OAK)

Raiders' quarterback Terrelle Pryor sustained a sprained knee during Oakland's blowout loss to the Eagles.  He was likely going to get pulled anyway when he was taken out of the game, but there is still cause for concern.  Pryor likely isn't a starting option for you unless your starter is on a bye or you play in a deep two-QB league.  He has shown tremendous speed and explosiveness, so any injury to his knee is going to worry fantasy GM's.

Kyle Rudolph (TE-MIN)

It was difficult enough to find a Minnesota Viking not named Adrian Peterson who had any sort of fantasy value, but Kyle Rudolph was arguably that player.  However, he sustained a fractured foot in last week's loss to the Cowboys and will likely be out for a month.  Rudolph has been victimized by horrendous quarterback play all season so he didn't quite have the value he possessed during the summer.  But he was a respectable backup tight end who could fill in on a bye week.  Now he is not worth keeping on your roster since he won't be back until the fantasy playoffs begin.

Geno Atkins (DT-CIN)

The Bengals have been one of the best defenses in the NFL thanks to their pass rush and ability to stop the run.  Geno Atkins has been a major factor in those aspects.  However, he sustained a season-ending knee injury last Thursday against the Dolphins.  This may only seem like a big deal in IDP leagues despite Atkins lack of sacks, but it certainly will have an affect on Cincinnati's team defense value in many leagues.

If you have any comments or questions, please feel free reach me at michael.stein@fantasyjudgment.com or on Twitter (@FantasyJudgment).




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About Michael A. Stein

Fantasy Sports Veteran, NYC Attorney and Chief Justice at http://www.fantasyjudgment.com

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