Injury Updates for Lions’ Golden Tate, Saints’ Willie Snead and More
Case Keenum MIN: chest injury
A chest injury limited Case Keenum at practice on Wednesday, but it likely won’t hold him out this week’s matchup in London against the Browns considering he practiced in full the rest of the week. It’s not clear when Keenum sustained the injury, but the Ravens' defense did knock him around a bit on Sunday. Despite the injury, Keenum is still a Low Injury Risk, but his Health Performance Factor is Below Average. He isn’t going to be a great QB Fantasy option this week. Sam Bradford isn’t expected to come back anytime soon, but Teddy Bridgewater could take over the starting job when he is healthy enough to return.
Jameis Winston TB: shoulder soreness
Winston was able to play through the AC joint sprain last week and posted great numbers. He is expected to do the same this week despite being limited in practice. Winston has already returned to a Low Injury Risk, so there is not much concern that his shoulder will flare up again as long as he takes care of it throughout the week. That means limiting his reps.
Emmanuel Sanders DEN: ankle sprain
Sanders had to be carted off the field with a sprained ankle in Week 6 and was expected to miss “multiple weeks.” While Sanders has not practiced yet this week, Broncos coach Vance Joseph seems convinced that Sanders has a chance to play against the Chiefs on Monday. The Inside Injuries algorithm calculated a grade 2 ankle sprain, which comes with a four-week Optimal Recovery Time. That means he won’t healthy until Week 10 against the Patriots. In the off chance he does return on Monday, he will be a very risky Fantasy option.
Willie Snead NO: hamstring strain
After being somewhat of a surprise inactive in Week 7, Willie Snead is practicing in full this week. He picked up a hamstring strain after coming off of a three-game suspension in Week 4 and has been on and off since. Unfortunately, this tends to be the case with hamstring injuries. An athlete thinks they are fully recovered but ends up aggravating the injury in their first game back. Inside Injuries gave Snead a five-week Optimal Recovery Time when he first picked up the hamstring strain, and he is just now reaching the end of that timeline. Snead is an Elevated Injury Risk, so be cautious when plugging him into your Fantasy lineups.
Juju Smith-Schuster PIT: concussion
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin announced on Tuesday that JuJu Smith-Schuster is in the concussion protocol, which came as a big surprise to almost everyone. He apparently started displaying symptoms on Monday night or Tuesday morning, and the Steelers put him in the protocol. It usually takes more than five days for a player to clear, but Smith-Schuster practiced in full this week and all signs are pointing to him playing against the Lions on Sunday. The final step of the protocol is being cleared by an independent neurologist, so we will see if he can get over that last hurdle by Sunday. He will be an Elevated Injury Risk, but with Martavis Bryant likely benched for this week, Smith-Schuster could see a sizable increase in targets.
Stefon Diggs MIN: groin strain
For the first time in two weeks, Stefon Diggs participated in practice. He was a partial participant on Wednesday but was upgraded to full on Thursday and Friday. Diggs is traveling with the team to London and reportedly has a “good chance” to play. He will only be two days shy of his four-week Optimal Recovery Time by Sunday’s game, but he will remain an Elevated Injury Risk. His Health Performance Factor is also Below Average, making him someone to avoid when setting your Fantasy lineups for this weekend.
Golden Tate DET: AC sprain
Golden Tate suffered an AC joint sprain in his shoulder in Week 6. He was originally expected to miss “multiple weeks” with the injury but was able to return to practice Wednesday and has been a limited participant all week. The Lions had a bye in Week 7, but it’s still a surprise to see him back on the field this early considering he was seen wearing a sling just a few days ago. He needs longer than just two weeks on the sidelines before returning to game-time action, especially considering that these types of injuries can linger for up to seven weeks.
Devin Funchess CAR: hamstring strain
This was the first we had heard of a hamstring issue for Funchess, who was limited at practice on Wednesday. He was upgraded to a full participant on Thursday and Friday so he should be ready to go on Sunday as long as he avoids a setback.
Danny Amendola NE: knee injury
Danny Amendola sat out of Wednesday’s practice session after apparently hyperextending his knee on a punt return on Sunday. He returned to a limited practice on Thursday and is considered questionable for this weekend’s matchup with the Chargers. Given Amendola’s injury history, especially knee injuries, the Inside Injuries algorithm is calculating a High Injury Risk for the Patriots’ receiver. It’s also important to note that hyperextensions of the knee often times result in ligament damage.
Kenny Britt CLE: knee injury
After a two week absence due to knee and groin injuries, Britt returned in Week 7. Not only is he an injury concern (High Injury Risk, Below Average Health Performance Factor), but he also hasn’t performed well when he is on the field. There are many reasons to keep him off of Fantasy rosters.
Michael Thomas NO: knee injury
Michael Thomas sat out of practice on Wednesday with a knee injury, but Saints coach Sean Payton said the injury is not significant or a long-term concern. This definitely helps ease our concerns, but coaches also have a tendency to underplay injuries. Fortunately, Thomas was able to return to practice on Thursday, though in a limited fashion. Thomas was removed from the Saints’ final injury report so he isn’t in danger of missing Week 8.
Robby Anderson NYJ: ankle injury
Anderson played through an ankle issue in Week 7 and is on track to do the same in Week 8. He is a boom or bust player that relies on the deep ball. At an Elevated Injury Risk and Below Average HPF, he is only a desperation flex play for now.
Tevin Coleman ATL: knee injury
Coach Dan Quinn expects Coleman to play in Week 8, but he was limited in practice on Wednesday with a knee injury he picked up against the Patriots last weekend.
Melvin Gordon LAC: foot injury
Now Gordon has added a foot injury to his long list of injuries that already included knee and shoulder concerns in 2017. He was limited on Wednesday and Thursday but will likely once again play through the injury (he hasn’t missed a game this season). Playing banged up may come back to haunt him at some point, but he is too good to keep out of Fantasy lineups right now despite the risk.
Ed Dickson CAR: ankle injury
Dickson popped up with an ankle injury this week and did not practice on Wednesday. It could explain his struggles in Week 7, when he had just three receptions for 18 yards. Consider him day-to-day.
Antonio Gates LAC: knee injury
Gates landed on the injury report Wednesday for the first time this year. He was limited with a knee injury. This wouldn’t be concerning except for his long history of knee problems. With his health a concern, Gates and Henry may continue to both see snaps at tight end, making Gates an even riskier Fantasy play.
Graham Gano CAR: knee soreness
The Panthers kicker is dealing with knee soreness going into this weekend. Given the importance of lower body health to a kicker’s performance and accuracy, he is a risky option for Week 8. Gano is still expected to kick this weekend against the Bears, but he isn’t necessarily worth holding onto if he becomes a last-minute inactive.
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