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Training Room: Fantasy Football Injury Updates – Week 3

Another week, another rash of injuries and this week it was the running backs who took it on the chin (and the knee, ribs, hamstrings, etc.) the most. With scares in Minnesota, Philadelphia, Buffalo, Cincinnati and New York (???) – fantasy owners had a lot to sweat in this weeks reports, so let’s get to it. 

Dalvin Cook, RB, MINCook suffered what didn’t appear to be a serious injury during overtime last week but wound up missing the remainder of the game. Now he hasn’t practiced this week and there is a lack of clarity as to what exactly is wrong with his hamstring. Cook himself claims he’ll be fine, but you better line up an emergency option just in case. Be prepared.

Devonta Freeman, RB, ATL – Freeman will be out at least 1-2 more weeks which is huge news for Tevin Coleman owners. Coleman moves to the front of the line as an every down horse and he proved his capability with 107 yards in Week 2 on the ground. The danger here is the development of a true workload split even when Freeman returns which could sully both backs long-term fantasy prospects. I might be looking to trade both.

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Jay Ajayi, RB, PHI – Yet another top end RB option lands on the doubtful list after Ajayi missed practice again on Thursday. Hopefully, you went out and grabbed Corey Clement because if Clement gets the start, he’s going to turn heads. Ajayi has a big-time motor and can punish defenses, but Clement is equally as talented and this injury should worry Ajayi owners because it may give Clement the chance he needs to force a more even timeshare. Ajayi is a tough start this week and will have to get some work in on Friday.

Leonard Fournette, RB, JAX – Fournette is getting in limited work this work and remains on track to play against a somewhat stingy Titans’ run defense this Sunday. I get the sense that the limited practice is just to keep the elite back rested, so he should be good to go for your lineup. Just in case, you should line up some emergency options like Ryan Grant if he doesn’t go.

Alshon Jeffery, Mike Wallace, WR, PHI – On his own merits, Wallace has no fantasy value, but with Wallace, Hopkins, and Jefferey down, Nelson Agholor is becoming the biggest target monster in the league. This also opened the door for a Jordan Matthews reunion with the Eagles and that could become a potential sleeper as well. Agholor is a WR1 in all formats as the only show in town this weekend thanks to this injury.

Rob Kelley, RB, WAS – Kelley was placed on IR and once again, he’s not a guy anyone was trusting for fantasy production but his injury, combined with Samaje Perine’s recent healthy scratches, further solidify Adrian Peterson’s role as the early-down back in Washington. AP is a trustworthy start as an RB2, FLEX in all format due to volume – despite last weeks tough outing.

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LeSean McCoy, RB, BUF – It’s been an eventful week for McCoy who has dealt with a rib injury in addition to more off-field “activity” regarding the allegations leveled against him this past off-season. The legal matter isn’t likely to be sorted out any time soon, making the rib injury the pressing issue for fantasy owners. The good news is he practiced, the bad news is it was in a non-contact jersey. Frankly, Buffalo’s offense is incredibly flimsy right now and a fully healthy McCoy would be a shaky start at best. If you have other options, activate them now.

Joe Halapio, C, NYG – Why am I putting a center on a fantasy football injury update? Because the Giants offensive line looked downright awful on Sunday night against Dallas and that was even when Halapio was on the field. I love Saquon Barkley, but what do you think losing the teams starting center is going to do to their blocking prospects? Even more concerning will be the pass protection for Eli Manning. There are some serious issues on the Giants front line which should be factored into your decisions regarding their skill players.

DeVante Parker, WR, MIA – Parker has been practicing in full all week and would appear to be slated to make his season debut this weekend, but the Dolphins brass has yet to sign off on that prospect. It’s mildly concerning and it either means he’s losing favor in Miami, or they’re trying to play it close the vest. Either way, he’s healthy and is likely to play, but isn’t really a trustworthy fantasy start.

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Marquise Goodwin, WR, SF – Tracking toward playing this weekend, Goodwin managed some limited practices through Thursday. The 49ers receiving corps has been uninspiring and Goodwin will be in line for a large share of targets if he can get on the field against the Chiefs. If he starts, he needs to be in lineups.

Joe Mixon, RB, CIN – Enjoying a strong start to the year for Mixon, fantasy owners were crushed when he exited last Thursday’s game with a knee injury. The good news is, it’s only the 2-4 week variety, but it does mean those who banked on the 2nd year back breaking out will have to find a stop gap. Gio Bernard is a fine option, so hopefully, you scooped him up as one of the top value plays in the league the next few weeks.

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Ben Stecker

Ben Stecker

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Writer, sports connoisseur, Pacific Northwesterner. Rarely met a sport I couldn't be great friends with. Follow me on twitter @Softball_Guy
Ben Stecker