Matthew Stafford QB, Colts: ankle sprain and hamstring strain
While it doesn’t appear that Stafford is in danger of sitting out of Week 6 against the Saints, there is a concern about how Stafford’s ankle and hamstring injuries could affect his performance on Sunday. He is practicing in full this week and is officially listed as questionable as his right leg is still giving him trouble. He was seen limping during practice on Wednesday and had a wrap around his leg. He is at a Below Average Health Performance Factor (HPF), so he won’t be close to 100 percent by this weekend. Stafford is also an Elevated Injury Risk, so the Lions’ O-line needs to focus on protecting Stafford if they don’t want him to end up on the sideline with an injury. The good news is Stafford has a favorable matchup with the Saints secondary this weekend, and Detroit’s O-line health is Above Average.
Tom Brady QB, Patriots: left shoulder sprain
Tom Brady missed practice on Tuesday to undergo an MRI on his left shoulder, which revealed an AC joint sprain. Luckily for Patriots’ fans and Fantasy owners, the injury is to his non-throwing shoulder. While he warmed up and even had his helmet on at the beginning of Wednesday’s practice, he was listed as a DNP on the official injury report. He was limited Thursday and is expected to suit up for Sunday’s game against the Jets. Considering the injury is to his non-throwing arm, we would be shocked if he sat out. Brady is an Elevated Injury Risk, so the Patriots’ O-line is going to have to step up their game to protect their QB. Luckily, they are currently at Peak Health.
Marcus Mariota QB, Titans: hamstring strain
Mariota strained his hamstring in Week 4. He did not play last week but has a chance to suit up in Week 6. According to the Inside Injuries algorithm, Mariota has passed his ORT of two weeks and is now a Low Injury Risk. Unfortunately, with hamstring injuries, there is always a high risk of re-injury, even if a player thinks they are completely healthy. Mariota remained limited this week in practice and is expected to be a game-time decision. It is not a great scenario for Fantasy owners as the Titans play on Monday night.
Derek Carr QB, Raiders: transverse process fracture
After missing only one week of action, Derek Carr is expected to return in Week 6 despite suffering a transverse process fracture in his back. He was given a wide timetable of 2-6 weeks for his recovery, and if he returns this weekend, he will be at the shortest end of that timeline. Both Cam Newton and Tony Romo returned after missing only one game with the same injury, so it’s definitely possible, but his performance is going to suffer. He was removed from the injury report on Friday, so he’s a full-go for Week 6. Unfortunately, he is still far from 100 percent.
Julio Jones WR, Falcons: hip injury
Jones was limited in practice on Wednesday and Thursday with a hip injury after coming off a Week 5 bye. He is reportedly on track to start on Sunday against the Dolphins, but his High Injury Risk is a big concern. Jones has had a hard time staying healthy, coming off a toe/foot injury from last year that required surgery and then being limited with a back injury in Week 4. Jones is likely dealing with a Grade 1 or 2 hip strain, and either way he’s not going to be 100 percent by Sunday.
Willie Snead WR, Saints: hamstring strain
Snead was suspended for the first three games of the season then missed Week 4 with a hamstring injury. New Orleans had a bye in Week 5, and coach Sean Payton said Snead’s hamstring is 100 percent coming off the break. Unfortunately for Fantasy owners, it doesn’t look like Snead is going to have a big role in his debut game. He said he is being worked “slowly” back into the offense. He is also an Elevated Injury Risk, so he should be considered a risky Fantasy start.
Mike Williams WR, Chargers: herniated disc
Williams has been slowly working his way back from a herniated disc that he suffered in the spring. It’s been a long process, but he is finally expected to make his NFL debut. While Williams doesn’t have much Fantasy value yet, he is an exciting player to watch. Back injuries are tricky, so he remains an Elevated Injury Risk. His Health Performance Factor (HPF) has improved to Above Average, a sign that his performance shouldn’t be greatly affected by his back injury.
Amari Cooper WR, Raiders: knee injury
Cooper is following the same schedule this week that he has been for much of the season. As he nurses a knee injury, Cooper typically is limited on Wednesday then ramps up his practice participation later in the week. He isn’t in danger of missing any games right now, but we have to wonder how much his knee is affecting him. He has been very quiet so far this season, connecting with his quarterbacks for just 13 receptions, 118 yards and a touchdown. His knee injury has him at an Elevated Injury Risk while his HPF is Below Average, so our algorithm shows his knee is contributing to his poor performances.
Jeremy Maclin WR, Ravens: shoulder injury
Last week, it was a hand injury that put Maclin’s Week 5 availability in question, but this week the wide receiver was listed with a shoulder injury on the Ravens’ official injury report. He was limited at practice on Wednesday and Thursday, and they aren’t considering it a serious injury. His High Injury Risk is a big concern, though. He is a risky Fantasy option for Week 6.
Jordy Nelson WR, Packers: back/hamstring injury
This explains why Nelson was out for the Packers’ final drive on Sunday against the Vikings. Nelson was listed on the official injury report with a back injury, though he is practicing in full leading up to Week 6. Nelson has suffered various injuries this year, including a quad injury he sustained in Week 2, but he has played in every game. Unless he suffers a major setback, Nelson will be active on Sunday despite his Elevated Injury Risk.
Orleans Darkwa RB, Giants: calf strain
In his first start of the year filling in for the injured Paul Perkins (ribs), Darkwa was unable to finish the game after suffering a calf strain. It’s a grade 1 (minor) injury that comes with a two-week Optimal Recovery Time. He was removed earlier in the week from the Giants’ injury report and will play on Sunday. The team isn’t concerned, but calf injuries are tricky, even minor ones. His Injury Risk is Elevated, and he is a Risky Start for his Fantasy owners this weekend due to current injury concerns.
Ty Montgomery RB, Packers: rib fractures
Multiple rib fractures sidelined Montgomery in Week 5, and he is listed as questionable for Week 6. He was limited in practice last week but ultimately decided that the pain was too much and was listed as inactive shortly before kick-off. He was a full participant in practice on Wednesday, but coach Mike McCarthy said he is still not sure of Montgomery’s Week 6 status. He did say that he isn’t concerned about ball security if Montgomery does have to wear extra padding. Montgomery said he “felt fine” after participating in Thursday’s contact practice. The biggest issue with non-displaced rib fractures is pain management, so extra padding is going to be necessary to protect Montgomery’s chest if he plays. He is an Elevated Injury Risk and a cautious Fantasy start.
Carlos Hyde RB, 49ers: hip injury
A hip injury has been hindering Hyde as of late, but he was not listed on the 49ers’ injury report this week. He saw limited snaps in Week 5, although coach Kyle Shanahan said that had nothing to do with Hyde’s injury and everything to do with the hot-hand approach the 49ers are using at running back. Hyde has reached his ORT (Optimal Recovery Time) of two weeks, so he’s almost healthy. Unfortunately, his injury history still makes him an Elevated Injury Risk. Rookie Matt Breida out-touched Hyde last week, but not being listed on the injury report is a step in the right direction as he tries to take back the No. 1 role.
Matt Forte RB, Jets: toe injury
The Jets lost Bilal Powell last weekend to a calf injury, so it would be perfect timing for Matt Forte to make his return after being sidelined for the past two weeks with turf toe. He was limited in practice on Wednesday and Thursday, but it’s definitely a step in the right direction. Forte is nearing in on his ORT of four weeks, but he remains a High Injury Risk because of his lengthy injury history. Forte should be considered questionable for Week 6, but he might try to play through the injury with the Jets thin at the running back position. He’s a risky Fantasy option.
Rob Gronkowski TE, Patriots: thigh contusion
Gronkowski was a late-add to the injury report last week and was ruled inactive just before last Thursday’s game with a thigh contusion. He apparently suffered the injury during last Wednesday’s practice, and with his lengthy injury history, the Patriots decided to play it safe with their star tight end. He reportedly participated in practice on Tuesday but was listed as DNP on Wednesday, though he was able to warm up with the team. While the Patriots claim there was never any doubt about Gronk’s availability for Week 6, he won’t be near 100 percent healthy by this weekend. According to the Inside Injuries algorithm, he won’t be healthy until Week 8.
Jack Doyle TE, Colts: concussion
Doyle remains in the league’s concussion protocol but was able to return to a limited practice on Thursday. He was a full participant on Friday and should be in the final step of the protocol. Doyle did not play in Week 5 but has a chance to clear in time to suit up in Week 6.
Travis Kelce TE, Chiefs: concussion
Kelce suffered a concussion in the first half on Sunday night. He was evaluated but cleared to return to the game. Upon further evaluation at halftime, Kelce was confused and had memory issues, a clear sign of a concussion. He remains in concussion protocol but returned to practice on Thursday and Friday. He now has a good chance to clear in time to play Sunday.
Matt Bryant K, Falcons: back injury
The Falcons signed another kicker this week as Bryant battles a back injury. There was no sign before the bye week that he was dealing with an injury. He didn’t practice on Wednesday or Thursday but did return on Friday. If he is in your Fantasy lineup have another kicker lined up in case he can’t go on Sunday.
Stefon Diggs – Confirmed OUT