Thu Sep 5 8:34am ET
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
It is Week 1 of the season, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t dealing with any injuries. There are plenty of players banged up as we head into the season. The good news is many on this list are expected to play. That likely won’t be the case as the season progresses. Things on the injury front will only get worse from here. But for now, enjoy the mostly healthy players as we head into Week 1. Good luck!
Odell Beckham Jr., WR, Browns. Beckham didn’t get in a preseason game and was slowed in practices because of a hip injury, but he will be ready to go for Week 1. He is practicing this week and looks to be his old self for the first week of the season.
Tyler Kroft, TE, Bills. Kroft continues to battle a foot injury and is expected to miss Week 1. He could even miss another week or two after this week. He is the top pass-catching tight end for the Bills when healthy, so the team hopes he can recover in a hurry. Lee Smith and Dawson Knox are the top candidates for playing time with Kroft out.
Robby Anderson, WR, Jets. Anderson is battling a calf injury but has been able to practice this week. He is expected to be in the starting lineup, barring a late-week setback with the injury. He is the top receiver in this offense and should see plenty of weekly targets.
DeSean Jackson, WR, Eagles. Jackson broke his finger in practice last week and it still isn’t totally healed, but Jackson will be healthy enough to play Week 1. This injury shouldn’t limit him, meaning he should man a starting spot for the Eagles.
Jordan Reed, TE, Redskins. Reed suffered a concussion a few weeks back and is still not cleared from the concussion protocol. The good news is he is practicing some, which is a good sign for the concussion. We should have an idea about his status in the next day or two. Don’t rule him out just yet. He has a shot to suit up Week 1.
Trey Burton, TE, Bears. Burton is questionable to play Thursday because of a groin injury. He would have a much better chance to play if the game was on Sunday but the early-week game hurts his chances. Burton has been limited in practice and is going to be a game-time decision Thursday. And even if he plays, the Bears might limit him some in the game.
John Ross, WR, Bengals. Ross has been injured much of camp and preseason action, but has already been declared healthy enough to play Week 1. His latest injury is a hamstring but it won’t hold him back for the game this week. Ross has a chance to play a big role in the game with A.J. Green out to start the year.
Jalen Hurd, WR, 49ers. Hurd has a back injury and is out of practice to start the week. The 49ers don’t expect to have Hurd available for the game, and he could even miss a few weeks of action. Deebo Samuel and Kendrick Bourne are the likely candidates to man the No. 3 receiver role for the 49ers while Hurd is out.
Amari Cooper, WR, Cowboys. Cooper has been sidelined with a foot injury the last few weeks but is back to health. He is practicing in full and should be near or at full strength for the Week 1 game. His foot injury will not keep him to any longer.
Stefon Diggs, WR, Vikings. We aren’t sure how serious the injury is, but Diggs hamstring injury is something to watch. He was not able to practice Wednesday, which isn’t a great sign. There remains a decent chance he plays but you’ll want to keep an eye on the notes to make sure he gets some practice in before the week is out. This is a scary one right now.
A.J. Green, WR, Bengals. Green had to have ankle surgery and remains in a boot right now. It is not certain when he’ll return, but you can expect him to miss a few more weeks of action. Hopefully, we know more about his status shortly. Tyler Boyd is the No. 1 receiver for the Bengals while Green is out.
Dante Pettis, WR, 49ers. Pettis has been limited in practice this week because of a groin injury. He is expected to be healthy enough to play this week, though. He should suit up and serve as the No. 1 receiver for the 49ers. This injury isn’t a big concern.
Keke Coutee, WR, Texans. Coutee went down in the preseason because of an ankle injury. It didn’t look good for him to be ready for Week 1 when the injury occurred, but things are looking up for him to be ready now. He has progressed well. At this point, we think Coutee plays and serves as the slot receiver for the Texans, but keep an eye on the player notes for the latest.
Jeff Paur is a two-time finalist for FSWA Fantasy Football Writer of the Year and won the FSWA award for Best Fantasy Football Article on the Web in 2011. He also was the most accurate expert in 2012, winning the FSTA Fantasy Football Accuracy Award. If you have any questions for Jeff, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.
Free-agent WR Antonio Callaway (Browns) signed with the Tampa Bay Vipers of the XFL Thursday, Jan. 16.
Kansas City Chiefs RB LeSean McCoy (illness) remained out of practice Thursday, Jan. 16.
Fantasy Spin: McCoy played just one offensive snap in last week's Divisional Round game against the Houston Texans. He's clearly behind RB Damien Williams and is no longer worth starting.
Kansas City Chiefs QB Matt Moore (illness) and DT Chris Jones (calf) didn't participate in practice Thursday, Jan. 16. DT Khalen Saunders (knee), CB Morris Claiborne (shoulder), CB Kendall Fuller (knee), DE Tanoh Kpassagnon (neck), C Austin Reiter (wrist) and G Andrew Wylie (ankle) practiced in full.
Green Bay Packers DL Kenny Clark (back), TE Marcedes Lewis (non-injury), LB Preston Smith (ankle), FB Danny Vitale (knee) and CB Tramon Williams (non-injury) were limited participants in practice Thursday, Jan. 16. S Adrian Amos (chest), OT Bryan Bulaga (non-injury), WR Ryan Grant (non-injury), LB Blake Martinez (hand) and OL Billy Turner (ankle) practiced in full.
Kansas City Chiefs TE Travis Kelce (knee) remained limited at practice Thursday, Jan. 16.
Fantasy Spin: Kelce earned a light practice week while catching 10 of 12 targets for 134 yards and three touchdowns against the Houston Texans in the Divisional Round. He's the week's top tight end option once against this week so long as he takes the field.
Tennessee Titans LB Jayon Brown (shoulder), LB Rashaan Evans (foot), WR Adam Humphries (ankle), CB Adoree' Jackson (foot), WR Cody Hollister (ankle) and OT Jack Conklin (shoulder) were limited in practice Thursday, Jan. 16. CB Logan Ryan (illness) and LB David Long Jr. (knee) participated in full.
Green Bay Packers WR Geronimo Allison (illness) was limited in practice Thursday, Jan. 16.
Fantasy Spin: It's an upgrade for Allison after he missed Wednesday's practice. He's likely to be limited for much of the week but should ultimately suit up for Sunday, Jan. 19's NFC Championship Game against the San Francisco 49ers. He made just one catch for 11 yards last week against the Seattle Seahawks and isn't worth much more than a desperation flier.
Green Bay Packers TE Jimmy Graham (non-injury) was a limited participant in practice Thursday, Jan. 16.
Fantasy Spin: Graham has caught seven of 11 total targets across his last two games, recording 49 receiving yards in each game. He hasn't found the end zone since Week 7 and doesn't possess much touchdown upside, but the Packers have few better options in the passing game outside of WR Davante Adams. He could be a sneaky play at a thin position.
San Francisco 49ers RB Tevin Coleman (elbow) practiced in full Thursday, Jan. 16.
Fantasy Spin: It's Coleman's second straight full practice, and he should be good to go for the NFC Championship Game against the Green Bay Packers Sunday, Jan. 19. He's coming off one of his best games of the season, and he'll be worth starting once again in all formats.
San Francisco 49ers RB Raheem Mostert (calf) was a full participant in practice Thursday, Jan. 16.
Fantasy Spin: Mostert's on track to play in the NFC Championship Sunday, Jan. 19. He took a back seat to RB Tevin Coleman in the Divisional Round game against the Minnesota Vikings, but he was still able to rack up 58 yards and 12 carries. He's worth starting, but Coleman should be viewed as the better option.
San Francisco 49ers LB Kwon Alexander (pectoral) and DL Dee Ford (quadriceps, hamstring) were limited in practice Thursday, Jan. 16.
Free-agent WR Antonio Brown (Patriots) had his relationship with agent Drew Rosenhaus conditionally terminated Thursday, Jan. 16, until the wide receiver seeks counseling, per a source.
Fantasy Spin: While the talent remains alluring, it's become clear Brown is going to have to make some personal changes before he gets a chance to play again the league.
San Francisco 49ers TE George Kittle (ankle) was a full participant in practice Thursday, Jan. 16, according to head coach Kyle Shanahan.
Fantasy Spin: Great news for Kittle after he sat out Wednesday's workouts with the nagging ankle injury. Unless we hear of any kind of setback later this week, count on him being good to go for Sunday afternoon's NFC title tilt.
Updating previous reports, Arizona Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald's one-year contract for 2020 will include a base salary of $11 million and will have $500,000 in roster bonuses and $250,000 in incentives.
Cleveland Browns WR Odell Beckham Jr. is the subject of a simple battery arrest warrant issued by the New Orleans Police Department after Beckham appeared to slap a police officer's buttocks in the LSU locker room Monday, Jan. 13 following the College Football Playoff championship game.
Fantasy Spin: While this isn't the most serious of incidents, OBJ continues to make more headlines off the field than on it following his disappointing 2019 debut with the Browns (74 catches-1,035 yards-4 TDs). And if the trend continues, will the new Browns regime say enough is enough for a player brought in by the previous administration?
Cleveland Browns wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has been accused of simple battery after an incident in the locker room following LSU's national championship win over Clemson on Monday night. Beckham was caught on video spanking a police officer on the backside during the post-game locker room celebration. New Orleans police have issued a warrant for Beckham's arrest following the incident. The Browns have since released a statement that they are aware of the issue and that they have been in contact with Beckham and his representatives. This is the second issue to stem from Beckham's attendance at the game on Monday night as he was also caught on camera apparently handing money to LSU players on the field after the win. Neither situation is likely to impact Beckham from a fantasy perspective but it's just another issue for the Browns organization to contend with this offseason.
Tennessee Titans CB Logan Ryan (illness) is expected to return to practice Thursday, Jan. 16, after sitting out the previous day with an illness.
Tennessee Titans RB Derrick Henry rushed 23 times for 188 yards and two scores in Week 10 against the Kansas City Chiefs. The Titans will take on the Chiefs in the AFC Championship game Sunday, Jan. 19.
Fantasy Spin: The Titans won that game 35-32 in Patrick Mahomes' first game back from his knee injury. The Chiefs could neutralize him by scoring early and often, but Mahomes threw for 446 yards and three scores, and the Titans remained in it. Henry is arguably the best running back in fantasy remaining in the playoffs.
San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle (ankle) missed practice on Wednesday ahead of the NFC Championship showdown against the Green Bay Packers. The All-Pro chipped a bone in his left ankle earlier this season and aggravated it during the third quarter of the Divisional Round. A proven warrior, head coach Kyle Shanahan remains optimistic, but Kittles practice regimen the rest of the week should be telling. Used as a blocker last Sunday, Kittle amassed only three touches for 16 yards. Its improbable the injury will sideline him for the biggest game of his career, but wideouts Deebo Samuel and Emmanuel Sanders would see a bump in targets if Kittle cant go.
New Orleans Saints RB Alvin Kamara could hold out in hopes of securing a long-term contract extension, in the opinion of ESPN.com's Mike Triplett, who notes that the team's other top contributors from the 2017 draft class can have their fifth-year options picked up, whereas Kamara is set to become an unrestricted free agent after the 2020 season. Triplett also mentions that valuing Kamara may be difficult because despite his versatility he only plays about two-thirds of the team's offensive snaps.
Fantasy Spin: This is pure speculation at this point, but Triplett lays out a compelling case for a contractual impasse. It's just something to file away and keep an eye on once the offseason kicks into high gear.