Week 7 NFL Injury News and Updates
Week 7 NFL Injury News and Updates
What’s going on this week in the world of COVID and the NFL. Well, the original Sunday night game between the Raiders and Buccaneers has been moved to a late afternoon start. Why? The entire starting offensive line of the Raiders is in COVID protocol. The NFL states this game will be played right now, but if anything goes sideways in the next 48 hours, that game could either be moved to Monday, Tuesday, or postponed to a later date. Set your lineups accordingly.
The Cardinals may have blown out the Cowboys on Monday night, but DeAndre Hopkins had a surprisingly quiet game. Perhaps his ankle injury is why. Hopkins missed practice Wednesday and Thursday but returned Friday. He’s good to go and should be started.
Julio Jones has been a conundrum for fantasy owners this season with a hamstring injury. Sometimes he plays and doesn’t perform well. Sometimes he misses the game, and sometimes he just goes off and has an explosive day. Jones will play Sunday, and although I like to preach caution, you have no choice but to start him when he suits up. Calvin Ridley is dealing with an elbow injury but is also expected to play Sunday. Ridley is also starting for you this week.
John Brown hasn’t practiced at all this week due to a knee injury. The Bills aren’t going to need Brown to defeat the Jets this week, so why would they risk his long-term availability this season to play in this game, and if he does play, will he be able to finish and/or just be a decoy. Brown is on my bench this week, even though the matchup is superb. Late note, Brown is out this week, decision made.
Curtis Samuel didn’t play last week even though he practiced in a limited fashion all week. That is the same pattern he is following this week. Will he play versus the Saints on Sunday? Does it matter? No, you’re not starting him either way unless desperate or in a very deep league.
Joe Mixon is out this week. This is a blow to fantasy owners whenever a top running back misses a game; it’s a blow. Giovani Bernard would seem the likely beneficiary in this situation and should be claimed in all leagues. Hey, even if you don’t need Bernard but have top waiver wire priority, you might want to play a little defense here and grab Bernard.
The Browns are a bit of a mess, although I suppose it could be worse. Baker Mayfield was taken off the injury report but has been dealing with a rib/chest injury that might’ve contributed to his poor play last week. I’m starting him if you normally would. Kareem Hunt has a rib injury limiting him in practice, but he should be a go for the game and likely start on your fantasy team.
The trickier injuries are to Jarvis Landry and Austin Hooper. Landry admitted this week that he has a broken rib and is trying to play through it. If not for a good matchup, I’d pass here, so you should proceed with caution. I’d prefer you to find another option on your roster. Austin Hooper is out with appendicitis. The Browns throw to their tight ends more than 30% of the time. David Njoku (who has requested a trade) could be a play Sunday.
If you’re still holding onto Marvin Jones, and who would blame you for giving up on him, he has a knee injury that is limiting him. Listen, I want to drop Jones, but I’ll give him one more week in what is a particularly good matchup, but if he fails once again, it’s Dumpsville for Jones.
Green Bay Packers
Aaron Jones has a calf strain that he suffered in practice Thursday. He is likely to play Sunday, and of course, you’re starting him, but keep an eye on his status this weekend. Robert Tonyan is dealing with an ankle injury and currently not practicing. Maybe you weren’t planning on starting him anyway, but if you were, you might want to move on here.
The Jaguars are having some issues at wide receiver once again this week. DJ Chark has an ankle injury and is limited. Laviska Shenault has a hamstring injury. The duo is expected to play this week, and while you’re always starting Chark, perhaps you want to play it more cautious with Shenault.
Kansas City Chiefs
Sammy Watkins is doubtful to play this week, and that’s okay. He’s a nightmare to start in fantasy anyway, so now your decision is made for you. I still like Mecole Hardman, but I’m the first to admit that he can sometimes be a complete bust. While not an injury, Le’Veon Bell is going to eat into the touches for Clyde Edwards-Helaire, especially at the goal line. I’m still starting CEH this week as Bell may not know the entire offense, but then CEH and Bell, for that matter, are no longer must starts.
Los Angeles Chargers
Justin Jackson, who somewhat surprisingly has been the better back in fantasy once Austin Ekeler is dealing with a knee injury but should play Sunday. However, I do wonder if his touches are limited and if this gets Joshua Kelley back into the mix. Perhaps it’s also a game flow situation, or maybe even whichever back is playing better. Fun fun fun. Keenan Allen is dealing with a back injury but should be good to go Sunday and, of course, should be in your lineup.
Los Angeles Rams
Darrell Henderson has missed practice time this week with a thigh injury but is expected to play. That being said, does this injury give the Rams the excuse they are looking for to play rookie Cam Akers more often? Maybe yes, maybe no, but sooner or later, this situation is going to drive fantasy owners crazy. Tyler Higbee has also missed practice with a hand injury. Higbee has been up and down this season, and you may be better off looking for another tight end here as this is a tough matchup with the Bears.
New England Patriots
Julian Edelman has been on the injury list with a knee injury for most of the season. Would I start him? Probably not at this point. Cam Newton has been awful in two of his last three games, which is killing Edelman’s value. I’d rather find someone else to start at this point, even if eventually this will hurt me when Cam and Edelman go off.
New Orleans Saints
Michael Thomas has been a problem over the past month. First, he gets a high ankle injury, then he’s suspended by the team for punching a teammate, and now he has a hamstring to boot. It seems 50/50 at best that he plays Sunday. Should you start him if he does play? Well, that depends on your roster, but be aware he is highly unlikely to be at full strength. More bad news for the Saints is that Emmanuel Sanders has been placed on COVID-IR. Tre’Quan Smith is a must-play Sunday.
New York Jets
Sam Darnold is expected to start Sunday but really, who cares. If you’re starting him, you have bigger problems than I can solve. Jamison Crowder has also been limited with a groin injury. Once again, it doesn’t matter; I’ll also pass on him along with every other Jet unless you need a running back.
San Francisco 49ers
Raheem Mostert is once again out due to an ankle injury. He’s becoming so frustrating to roster. Jerick McKinnon is your starter Sunday and should be started with JaMycal Hasty playing a supporting role. Hasty could also be a start if you’re desperate, and Jeff Wilson is unable to play.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
We can’t talk Bucs without mentioning the wide receivers. Mike Evans and Chris Godwin are both going to play, but neither is 100%. Evans has the ankle injury, and Tom Brady seems to barely even look in his direction. Brady is also not throwing the deep ball, which is what Evans excels at. Godwin has a hamstring injury. While both will play, you need to keep your expectations in check. As for Rob Gronkowski, he has a shoulder injury, and you know it must hurt as he spiked the football last week after his touchdown, with his left arm, not right. Gronk likely starts for you as well this week, but I wonder if he can finish the game.