Week 5 NFL Injury News and Updates
Personally, I don’t want to hear anyone complaining about competitive imbalance this season, whether it be from gamblers, fantasy players, or fans. We all were well aware of what might happen this season due to COVID-19. Yes, games are going to be moved, postponed, and/or canceled. That’s just the way it is. Would you be happier if the season was just canceled altogether? No, so deal with the changes and roll with the punches. We are fantasy players. We can adapt.
Julio Jones is turning into a nightmare for fantasy owners. Yes, he’s a star player, but so frustrating to own as he always seems to be hurt. There is nothing more frustrating than starting him only to see him leave due to injury before he does any fantasy damage. At this point, it is unknown if he will play Sunday, but if you own him, I’d be careful.
Yes, we love the matchup, but I have a hard time seeing him play a full game. If you have someone else on your roster you like even a little bit, I’m likely to go with that player. As for Calvin Ridley, he is still being limited in practice with a knee injury, and even if he plays, he once again may not be at full strength. That was a big fat zero he put up last week. I would be careful here as well, even though we love the matchup.
Lamar Jackson scared us all by not practicing for a day or two due to a knee injury, but coach Harbaugh came out Friday and stated that LJax is fine and will start Sunday. Mark Andrews suffered a thigh injury in practice Thursday. He should play Sunday, but it is a situation to watch.
Zach Moss will return for this game, which may be more frustrating than good for fantasy owners as he is not good enough to start and will just take away touches from Devin Singletary. John Brown has a calf injury but is expected to play, assuming the Bills play. Remember, this game has been moved to Tuesday right now, but one more positive test for Tennessee and this game will likely be postponed. You need to be careful with all of your Bills and Titans here.
Another late addition to the injury report is Joe Mixon. He has a shin injury. Mixon is expected to play, although he may not have a great game versus the Ravens’ defense. Still, I assume you have to start him as it’s unlikely you can do better on your roster.
Okay, Nick Chubb will be out of the lineup for about six weeks with a knee injury, which leaves the running game in the hands of Kareem Hunt. The problem is Hunt is also nursing a groin injury. Hunt will play and is an RB1, but he may not handle the full load, which is why D’Ernest Johnson was such a hot pickup in FAAB this week. Johnson can be a flex play as well, but this is a tough matchup versus the colts. David Njoku has been activated off of IR but isn’t a play this week and may not be this season.
The Cowboys were dealt another blow this week when it was announced that All-Pro left tackle Tyron Smith will be lost for the season due to a neck injury. This means that both starting tackles are done until 2021. The Cowboys offense may be all that is holding this team together, but that may be coming to an end shortly.
Head coach Vic Fangio has announced that quarterback Drew Lock will start if he dresses. This doesn’t matter much as he shouldn’t be started for your fantasy team unless you have zero options. The fact that the Denver game has been moved to Monday could help the chances for Noah Fant to play as he is dealing with an ankle injury. Once again, be careful here as you may not have any other options should he be a late scratch. Phillip Lindsay will return for this game, and is safe to be placed back in your lineup if you would normally do so.
Laviska Shenault has been limited in practice due to a hamstring injury. He’s questionable to play Sunday and probably will. Still, proceed with caution here. He is not a must-start, and if you have a healthier option, you may want to go that route.
Las Vegas Raiders
Henry Ruggs will play after missing one game due to injury. Against the Chiefs, you have to figure quite a bit of passes will be coming his way from Derek Carr, so yeah, I want to start him. Darren Waller is dealing with a knee injury and is questionable, but you’re starting him should he play. The truth is, if you have a Raider on your roster and can’t start him this week, you may want to ask yourself if said Raider should still be on your roster.
Los Angeles Chargers
Chargers are also a bit of a mess. First off, we have been told by head coach Anthony Lynn that Justin Herbert will be the starting quarterback for the team regardless of the health of Tyrod Taylor. Austin Ekeler is gone for an undetermined amount of time due to a hamstring injury. It’s somewhat curious that the team hasn’t placed him on injured reserve yet. Joshua Kelley is a low-end RB2 this week, and Justin Jackson a good depth pickup or desperation play. Mike Williams has had a few injuries this season. Now it’s a hamstring. I’m sitting him even if he does play.
New England Patriots
Cam Newton is currently on COVID IR. His game has been moved to Monday, so this gives him a better chance to play as he can be taken off that list at any time. It seems that if Cam can’t go, Jarrett Stidham will get the start. I wouldn’t go anywhere near anyone not named Julian Edelman in this game, and even he is questionable to play due to a knee injury.
New Orleans Saints
Michael Thomas is practicing in a limited fashion, but it is still unknown if he will play Monday night. It’s simple if he plays for the Saints, he plays for you, but if you can’t wait to find out if he will play, there is nothing wrong with waiting a week. Jared Cook is also questionable, and I don’t have a problem waiting a week for him no matter what, as he has done very little in the first quarter of this season.
New York Jets
Sam Darnold won’t start this week due to a shoulder injury. Not sure that matters as this offense is next to hopeless. Joe Flacco takes over, but who cares. I guess you might care about Le’Veon Bell being activated but only because running back is so thin. I don’t like starting anyone’s first game back after coming off IR. There is also the possibility this game gets postponed after a single Jet tested positive Friday morning.
What can I tell you about the Eagles’ passing game? Alshon Jeffery is out again, not that you would start him anyway, and DeSean Jackson is questionable at best. You don’t want either. Actually, outside of Miles Sanders and Zach Ertz, I’d stay away from any Eagle offensive player here. The Steelers may have the best defense in the NFL.
San Francisco 49ers
Jimmy Garoppolo is expected to start Sunday versus the Dolphins. I may not like to start someone coming off IR, but this is a plus matchup; still, he only starts in a league in which you can start two quarterbacks. Raheem Mostert has been practicing but is likely to be a true game-time decision Sunday. If you have Mostert and Jerick McKinnon, you’re golden; just start Mostert if he is active or McKinnon if not. If you only have one, that is more problematic. As for Deebo Samuel, I want to start him this week. He should play more but is battling an illness. Watch his progress carefully.
Corey Davis and Adam Humphries are both on the COVID-IR, and neither is expected to play (assuming they do play) Tuesday versus the Bills. I’ll pass on any Titan offensive player not named Derrick Henry. Starting anyone in this game is a gamble. Any positive test by any Titan between now and Tuesday could scuttle the game. I’m still going to start Henry, but that’s it. You should be able to cover yourself for anyone else.