Week 14 NFL Injury News and Updates
The bye weeks are a thing of the past, and your fantasy playoffs are more than likely here. Congratulations if you made it, and if not, well, there are always daily fantasy games or even perhaps, placing a wager or two. In one league, I missed the playoffs by .23 points. Yeah, that one stings. It’s an IDP league, so don’t think it hasn’t gone through my mind that if not for one missed tackle, a dropped pass, a turnover, I make the playoffs. It happens to all of us.
Kyler Murray is going to play, but that shoulder injury has cost him some zip off of his fastball and has also limited him from running the ball. Murray has gone from an MVP candidate to a true discussion about whether or not you should start him in your fantasy playoffs. Kenyan Drake has a hip injury that may have occurred in practice but should be able to play Sunday. DeAndre Hopkins is also on the injury report with neck and back injuries. Hopkins should also play, but with Murray not looking like himself, it’s best to keep his expectations in check.
Julio Jones won’t play Sunday. Calvin Ridley is now a must-start and possibly even Russell Gage if you like a long shot. Todd Gurley has recovered from his knee injury and should be full-go versus the Chargers. Tight end may be extremely shallow, but Hayden Hurst is still a risky start this week due to an ankle injury that has been hampering him for almost a month.
Those fantasy owners who were hoping to get Christian McCaffrey back for this game, well, I have some bad news for you. That’s unlikely to happen as he is listed as doubtful for this week. Carolina was also hit hard with COVID earlier this week. The good news is that Curtis Samuel has already cleared the protocol, and D.J. Moore is likely out — but remember to make sure before game time.
Allen Robinson is once again dealing with a knee injury that is limiting him in practice, but he should be just fine to play Sunday and is pretty close to a must-start.
Like McCaffrey, there was some hope that Joe Mixon would return this week, but that’s not happening either. Tee Higgins has been limited at practice this week with a hamstring injury. Higgins has a good matchup versus an undermanned Dallas secondary, but with Joe Burrow, he just doesn’t have a reliable quarterback throwing him the ball. Whether or not you start him likely depends on who else you have on your roster.
Ezekiel Elliott has a calf contusion, but that shouldn’t stop him from playing Sunday.
The Lions have injuries on all fronts. Matthew Stafford is still dealing with a thumb injury, but that didn’t stop him from an impressive performance last week. D’Andre Swift had a concussion and, this week, an illness (not COVID). Swift does look like he will play this week, but his reps could once again be limited. Swift is a low-end RB2 versus Green Bay. Remember Kenny Golladay? Well, he might play this week, but Detroit has already let it be known that even if he does, it may be in a limited role. Could Detroit be playing with Green Bay? Sure, but keep this in mind before you automatically plug him into your lineup.
Green Bay Packers
It’s all about Allen Lazard again. Lazard plays but still isn’t completely healthy. We love the matchup but would be careful here.
David Johnson doesn’t have an injury but a personal issue that may prevent him from playing Sunday. We will have to follow this as the weekend moves along. Duke Johnson has a non-COVID related illness but should be healthy for the game Sunday and likely the starter if David Johnson is out. Brandin Cooks has a foot and neck injury that is causing him some problems in practice this week. Cooks is questionable to play this week and seems likely to be a game-time decision.
James Robinson has a knee injury but will play Sunday. The Jaguars may only have one win, but they do try hard. They also play a Tennessee team that can’t rush the passer. Perhaps, Laviska Shenault, if he can recover from a thumb injury, could be a sneaky play this week.
Las Vegas Raiders
Josh Jacobs has returned to practice in a limited fashion. That’s the good news; the bad is that even if Jacobs does play, he’ll be up against a Colts defense that can be extremely stingy versus the run. You’re still starting Jacobs, but a big game here is not likely.
The Dolphins have a couple of players who were limited in practice but will play this week. Tua Tagovailoa (thumb) and Myles Gaskin (knee). They may be banged up but will play Sunday.
New Orleans Saints
Drew Brees is another star who won’t return this week from his injuries. Brees is heading in the right direction, but 11 broken ribs and a collapsed lung do take time to recover from. Michael Thomas is still limited with an ankle injury, and that’s likely to be the case for the rest of the season.
New York Giants
Although head coach Joe Judge is playing it coy about Daniel Jones and whether or not he has recovered from his hamstring injury and will start this week by saying that it remains to be seen, Jones will play and will start. Jones is a full-go in practice and assuming he doesn’t re-injure that hamstring in practice today or tomorrow, he will be behind center Sunday.
New York Jets
Frank Gore didn’t practice Thursday, and there is some confusion as to why that is. Some believe it’s related to his concussion; others believe it’s just a maintenance day. It shouldn’t matter, but Adam Gase seems to use him more than anyone can believe. The Jets are a bit of a mess at wide receiver this week. Jamison Crowder is questionable with a calf injury. Breshad Perriman — the same with a shoulder injury, and Denzel Mims is out due to personal reasons. Crowder and Perriman will play for the Jets but probably shouldn’t for your fantasy team.
While this is not injury-related, Jalen Hurts will start for Philadelphia. This means no one outside of Miles Sanders starts for me.
Chase Claypool has an illness that once again is not expected to be COVID related, but his status for Sunday’s game remains to be seen. It would also be nice if Claypool and his fellow receivers could catch the ball.
San Francisco 49ers
Deebo Samuel now has a foot injury that is hampering him. Samuel will likely play Sunday, but it’s not a great matchup versus Washington. I’d probably pass here.
Chris Carson and Carlos Hyde have both been limited this week with injuries, but both should play. Assuming this holds, Carson is by far the running back you want to start this week out of this duo.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Mike Evans has been dealing with a hamstring injury, but as of Friday, all signs point towards Evans playing Sunday even if he is listed on the final injury report.
A.J. Brown has missed practice a couple of times this week with an ankle injury. The team may play it safe with Brown since they are playing the Jaguars this week so proceed with caution here. One other thing to consider here, after Brown dropped a pass or two last week in the loss to Cleveland, quarterback Ryan Tannehill rarely, if ever, looked his way again in that game.
Washington Football Team
Antonio Gibson is out Sunday due to a toe injury. This is a huge loss both for Washington and fantasy owners as Gibson had been tearing it up before his injury. J.D. McKissic could be a sneaky play here.