2017 Fantasy Football Injury Report: October 27
Michael Stein brings you all the latest updates on injuries around NFL and the fantasy impact of players going on and coming off the IR.
It is hard to believe that we have reached Week 8 of the season already and that the calendar will be turning to November next week. The fantasy playoffs are only five weeks away so now is the time to really start building your roster for the long run. We have seen so many injuries devastate fantasy roster up until now and you can expect that there will be more in the coming weeks. So, without further ado, let’s delve into the next edition of the fantasy football emergency room.
Michael Thomas (WR-NO) – The Saints number one wide receiver was back on the practice field on Thursday after dealing with a knee injury earlier in the week. We don’t know exactly when he sustained the injury but it appears that any concern of him missing time has been alleviated. Thomas is a solid WR1 option for Week 8 with 35 catches for 403 yards and two touchdowns thus far.
Stefon Diggs (WR-MIN) – Diggs has missed the past few games with a groin injury but appears ready to return for a salivating matchup against the lowly Cleveland Browns. He has been a WR1 when he played and he should return to that status this week assuming there are no setbacks before Sunday. The Vikings issues at quarterback are concerning but Diggs is still a great fantasy option this week when he looks to take advantage of a bad Cleveland secondary.
Melvin Gordon (RB-LAC) – Gordon has repeatedly appeared on the injury report as he deals with various nagging injuries, but that has not stopped him from playing in every game. He is a great fantasy option this week against the Patriots in what is expected to be a high-scoring game. Gordon is equally as effective in the passing game as he is running the ball so he should see lots of action and likely find the end zone in some capacity. Play him as a RB1 and expect significant production.
Golden Tate (WR-DET) – Fantasy GMs will have a tough decision to make about Tate who was still limited in practice on Thursday with a shoulder injury. The Lions play on Sunday night so GMs will likely have to make their decision before Detroit possibly makes its game-time decision. It is a positive development that he did practice in some capacity so there is good reason to be optimistic about him playing against Pittsburgh. Wait as long as you can before making the final call and if it seems likely that he will play then plug him back in your lineup.
Jameis Winston (QB-TB) – Winston is following a similar protocol in practice that he did last week when he didn’t throw until Friday. He is still recovering from a shoulder injury but his status for this week’s game against the Panthers does not seem to be an issue. He has thrown for 1,643 yards along with ten touchdowns and four interceptions. He is only a viable starting option in a standard 12-team league if your primary quarterback is injured or on a bye week.
Juju Smith-Schuster (WR-PIT) – Smith-Schuster has gotten a lot of attention this week and deservedly so as he could be a solid sleeper option in Week 8. The Steelers have benched Martavis Bryant so Smith-Schuster should see a lot of action in his place on Sunday night. He has been in the concussion protocol but he returned to practice in a full capacity which gives great optimism that he will be ready to go in prime-time on Sunday night. Start him as a WR3 or Flex and see if he can build on his 231 yards receiving and three touchdowns thus far.
Tevin Coleman (RB-ATL) – The Falcons expect that Coleman will play this week against the Jets as he is dealing with a knee injury that he sustained last week against New England. Coleman was limited in practice this week but could see a decrease in his workload. He has rushed for 229 yards and one touchdown to go along with 157 receiving yards and one touchdown. If he isn’t 100% then expect Devonta Freeman to carry most of the workload against a susceptible Jets defense.
Emmanuel Sanders (WR-DEN) – Sanders injured his ankle a couple weeks ago against the Giants and has not returned to practice in a significant manner since. Denver has not ruled him out yet for their Monday night game against Kansas City but the stars would really have to align for him to be active. The Broncos offense has been non-existent for a couple weeks so even if Sanders was able to make it onto the field he would not be a great fantasy option playing at less than 100% in an offense that cannot score. Keep him benched another week even if he is active,
Danny Amendola (WR-NE) – The oft-injured Danny Amendola is back on the injury report with a knee injury and has been listed as questionable for Week 8. He sustained a hyperextended knee on a punt return last week against the Falcons and was limited in practice on Thursday. He has been resilient in coming back from several injuries so there is still a good chance he plays this week against the Chargers. If he can play, he is a solid WR3 option in what should be a high-scoring game.
Joe Flacco (QB-BAL) – Flacco was knocked out of Thursday’s game against the Dolphins after getting crushed by an illegal hit by Kiko Alonso. He had his helmet knocked off and he looked to be in a complete daze after it happened. Flacco will be in the concussion protocol and have ten days to recover before the Ravens face Tennessee in Week 9. Flacco has been disastrous from a fantasy perspective this season with just 1,290 yards passing to go along with six touchdowns and eight interceptions. He was off to a good start against Miami before the injury, but he is still not a viable starting fantasy option even when healthy right now.
Jonathan Stewart (RB-CAR) – The veteran running back was limited in practice on Thursday with a toe injury. There is no indication that this will affect his ability to play Sunday against Tampa Bay. However, his performance on the field has been cause for concern as he has been limited to just 295 rushing yards and no touchdowns thus far. Stewart is not a great fantasy option this week except in very deep leagues with more than two running back or Flex slots.
Ed Dickson (TE-CAR) – Dickson had missed practice earlier in the week due to an ankle injury but he returned in a full capacity on Thursday. This is good news for him as he will be fine to play this week against Tampa Bay. Dickson broke out with an enormous game a few weeks ago and emerged on GMs’ fantasy radars. However, he hasn’t done much since and has 18 catches for 325 yards and no touchdowns on the season. Dickson remains a TE2 option simply living off that one breakout game.
Michael A. Stein, Esq. is the Chief Justice of Fantasy Judgment, the industry's premier dispute resolution service, and co-host of the Fantasy Alarm Podcast. You can contact him at email@example.com or on Facebook and Twitter (@FantasyJudgment).