Thu Dec 12 9:54am ET
By JEFF PAUR
Sr Fantasy Writer
Well, last week was a really tough one when it comes to injuries. Several receivers went down, leaving some holes in fantasy lineups. And injuries weren’t just limited to receivers. Other positions also were impacted. This could make setting lineups a little iffy for fantasy owners this week, which is a shame because we are in the fantasy playoffs. Hopefully, all the injuries don’t impact your lineup too much. Here is the latest injury news from around the league. . . .
Derrius Guice, RB, Redskins. Guice is injured once again, hurting his knee last week. He has been placed on Injured Reserve and is done for the season. This leaves Adrian Peterson as the starter for the Redskins going forward. Guice is a talented player but injuries have marred his career to date. He is going to need to show he can stay healthy if he hopes to land a starting job in this league.
Lamar Jackson, QB, Ravens. Jackson has been limited in practice this week because of a quad injury but is going to be ready to go for the game Thursday night. This injury won’t keep him out and shouldn’t slow him too much. We would play him with confidence in a great matchup against the Jets.
Nelson Agholor, WR, Eagles. Agholor continues to battle a knee injury and is iffy to play this week. The Eagles are likely to do all they can to get Agholor on the field, though, because the team is super thin at the position right now. Consider him a game-time decision but the chances of him playing seem decent.
Alshon Jeffery, WR, Eagles. Jeffery is done for the season because of a foot injury suffered last week. He suffered a non-contact foot injury. This leaves the Eagles very thin at receiver for the rest of this season.
Mark Andrews, TE, Ravens. Andrews suffered a minor knee injury last week and has been limited in practice this week because of the injury. He is questionable to play Thursday, but seems to have a pretty good shot to play. As long as he is in the lineup, Andrews is a solid play for fantasy teams.
Le'Veon Bell, RB, Jets. Bell was battling an illness last week, which kept him out of the game. He is already practicing in full this week and seems over the bug that sidelined him last week. He will be good to go and get his usual workload in the Jets offense.
Evan Engram, TE, Giants. Engram remains limited in practice because of a foot injury. He remains iffy to play and should be considered a game-time decision for Week 15. At this point, we would just get other options ready to play. Engram is a real wild card.
Greg Olsen, TE, Panthers. Olsen missed the game last week because of a concussion, but is back practicing some this week. He could be cleared to play Week 15 before the week is out. Keep an eye on the player notes for the latest. Olsen seems to be progressing. If he isn’t able to return, Ian Thomas gets another start for the Panthers.
DeVante Parker, WR, Dolphins. Parker was knocked from last week’s game with a concussion. He is practicing some to start the week, which is a pretty good sign, but is no sure thing to be cleared for the game. The good news is Parker should have his status figured out before the week is out, so keep an eye on the player notes for the latest. Allen Hurns would likely be the top target in the passing game if Parker is unable to play.
Josh Jacobs, RB, Raiders. Jacobs sat out the game last week because of a lingering shoulder injury. He had an MRI on the injury this week and received good results on the injury. The expectation is Jacobs should be able to play this week, barring some sort of late-week setback. He should be ready to go for Week 15.
Marvin Jones, WR, Lions. Jones is done for the season because of an ankle injury. He was injured last week and has already been placed on Injured Reserve. Danny Amendola could see a slight uptick in targets with Jones out of the lineup.
Adam Thielen, WR, Vikings. Thielen has missed the last several games because of a hamstring injury, but is finally set to return this week. He is practicing to start the week, which is a very good sign, and should return to the starting lineup, barring a setback late in the week. Thielen has high upside as long as he is active and in the starting lineup for the Vikings.
Damien Williams, RB, Chiefs. Williams is back practicing this week. His rib injury seems to finally be getting better. He is looking like a pretty good bet to return this week and split the work at running back for the Chiefs with their host of backs. This is a really tough situation for fantasy owners because you aren’t sure the back that will get the most carries.
Jameis Winston, QB, Bucs. Winston suffered a fractured thumb last week but was able to play with the injury. He is out of practice to start the week but should get in some work before the week is out. The Bucs believe he will be healthy enough to play and start the Week 15 games.
Mike Evans, WR, Bucs. Evans is another receiver that was injured last week. He suffered a pretty serious hamstring injury and is already being ruled out for the rest of this season. This puts Breshad Perriman in the starting lineup opposite Chris Godwin for the Bucs.
D.J. Chark, WR, Jaguars. Chark injured his ankle last week and was seen in a boot early in the week. The Jaguars are calling him week-to-week. We would not expect him to play this week. Chark could return before the season is out, but get other options ready. Things don’t look great for the rookie right now.
Daniel Jones, QB, Giants. Jones was held out of last week’s game because of a sprained ankle. Reports are the injury is a multiple week injury, meaning Jones is likely to miss this week, too. He is practicing on a limited basis, but we expect the Giants to play it safe with their rookie quarterback. Expect Eli Manning to get the start in Week 15.
Noah Fant, TE, Broncos. Fant suffered a foot injury last week but had a huge game before the injury. The good news is the injury doesn’t seem too serious. He has not been ruled out for this week just yet. We should have a better idea late in the week, but get other options ready for now. The Broncos might play it safe with their young player since the team has little to play for.
Rashaad Penny, RB, Seahawks. Penny is done for the season, suffering a torn ACL last week. He is set to undergo surgery and will face a long recovery. He might not even be ready for the start of the ’20 season. It is a shame to see him get hurt when he was playing his best football to day.
Ryan Griffin, TE, Jets. Griffin is out of practice because of an ankle injury. He has already been ruled out for the Week 15 game. Daniel Brown likely starts for the Jets at tight end this week.
JuJu Smith-Schuster, WR, Steelers. Smith-Schuster is set to make his return this week after missing the last few games because of a knee injury. He is fully participating in practice this week and ready to go for Week 15. He will return to his spot as the No. 1 receiver for the Steelers.
James Conner, RB, Steelers. Conner is another Steeler ready to return to the starting lineup. His is practicing in full this week. His shoulder injury is finally about 100 percent healthy.
Will Fuller, WR, Texans. Fuller was held out of the game last week because of a hamstring injury. He has been limited in practice this week but has a shot to return. Consider him a game-time decision, but it is encouraging to see Fuller get some work on the practice field already.
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 email@example.com. Follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffpaur.
The Green Bay Packers Defense faces a tough task this weekend in the NFC Championship game against the San Francisco 49ers. In their regular-season meeting, the Packers gave up 37 points and only dropped Jimmy Garoppolo only three times. They also failed to generate any turnovers. Green Bay's defense may need to lend their offense a helping hand by creating a turnover or two to swing the field position game. If Za-Darius and Preston Smith can ramp up the pressure, the Packers will have a good chance of generating a turnover or two and winning the game. It certainly won't be easy, considering how formidable the 49ers offense has been this season.
Green Bay Packers tight end Jimmy Graham gets a tough matchup against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game. Graham has back-to-back 49-year receiving performances, but those games came against teams that struggle to defend the tight end position. The 49ers are not one of those teams. They allowed the sixth-fewest fantasy points to tight ends all season and were the league's stingiest pass defense. Maybe Graham makes a play in the red zone. Still, he's a cheaper DFS play but by no means a comfortable one.
Green Bay Packers wide receiver Geronimo Allison (illness) is trending in the right direction to play in the NFC Championship game this weekend against the San Francisco 49ers. Even if available, Allison isn't an option in any fantasy format. The 25-year-old hasn't caught more than four passes in a game this season. It sure doesn't seem like he'll eclipse that mark against the league's best defense with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line.
Green Bay Packers wide receiver Allen Lazard (ankle) is currently questionable for the NFC Championship game against the San Francisco 49ers. There's certainly a risk for injury, considering he re-aggravated the ankle in last week's playoff game. Still, it's hard to ignore the two-game stretch Lazard had to end the season, where he saw 17 targets. That alone makes him worth a gamble, particularly in a must-win game for a Packers team in desperate need of another threat at receiver. Just beware, the matchup isn't ideal. The 49ers allowed only 172 passing yards to the Vikings last week.
Green Bay Packers wide receiver Davante Adams gets a tough matchup against the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game this weekend. Adams produced only 43 receiving yards and a score against San Francisco in the regular season but still had 12 targets. The star receiver has seen double-digit targets in nine of 13 games played this year. There's not many receivers that you can virtually pencil in for double-digit targets- but Adams is one of them. If fellow receivers Geronimo Allison (illness) and Allen Lazard (ankle) suit up, they may be limited. Adams could be looking at more work than usual, even in a matchup this difficult.
The San Francisco 49ers Defense enter Championship weekend as the highest-priced fantasy defense. The Niners face the Green Bay Packers, who they demolished 37-8 in Week 12. In that previous contest, the Niners relentlessly harassed future Hall of Famer quarterback Aaron Rodgers, dropping him five times and forcing a fumble. The Packers were a meager one for 15 on third down conversions. The 49ers will need to follow that blueprint again in the critical NFC Championship to emerge victorious. With a higher-intensity contest expected, it could be difficult to splurge on a defense in fantasy compared to other addressable positions.
San Francisco 49ers wide receivers Deebo Samuel and Emmanuel Sanders both offer solid fantasy value in the NFC Championship against the Green Bay Packers. Both players were limited to under 45 yards apiece in last weekends Divisional Round blowout but were featured early on when the game was still in question. The rookie Samuel has emerged as a consistent dual threat in the latter half of 2019 and is likelier the safer floor. Sanders, the savvy vet has proven himself as a reliable chain-mover with big-play potential. Against the Packers 10th-best pass defense by DVOA, either option seem primed to pop in Sundays winner-take-all battle.
Green Bay Packers running back Jamaal Williams will face off with the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game this weekend. Williams has been playing second fiddle to Aaron Jones quite a lot recently, as he hasn't seen double-digit carries since Week 13 against the Giants. It's worth noting that Williams played a large role in the regular-season game against the 49ers, which saw him rack up 18 touches. Green Bay very well could utilize Williams in spurts to keep San Francisco guessing, though his recent downtrend in usage makes him hard to trust.
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is a reasonable DFS bet for Sundays NFC Championship matchup against the Green Bay Packers. Priced as the third-best quarterback, Jimmy G squares off against a strong Packers defensive line that ranked 12th-best in adjusted sack rate during the regular season. Garoppolo was not pressed into service in the Divisional Round blowout win, but will likely be tasked with a tougher test on Sunday. While the Niners have mostly ridden its dominant running game throughout the year, Garoppolo has answered the bell in multiple occasions with three four-touchdown games. With dangerous weapons surrounding him, Garoppolo shouldnt be ruled out in the biggest game of his career to-date.
Green Bay Packers running back Aaron Jones will take on the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game this weekend. The 49ers Defense held Jones to just 38 rushing yards in their regular-season meeting. However, the star back has been playing some seriously good football in his last five games, with 501 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns. He's also had 20-plus carries in three straight contests. Expect Green Bay to utilize Jones early and often in screens and runs to combat the 49ers mighty pass rush. Even if Jones doesn't pile up over 100 yards, his propensity to find the end zone and role in the passing game make him a safer play this weekend.
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers will take on the San Francisco 49ers this weekend with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line. The 49ers Defense held Rodgers to just 104 passing yards and one touchdown in their regular-season meeting. However, there are a couple things that are different ahead of this matchup. First, tackle Bryan Bulaga will play in this game after being injured in the first quarter against the 49ers previously. Rodgers should have better protection than he had when these teams met. Secondly, Rodgers himself is playing better football than he was during the regular season before this matchup. He has 566 passing yards and four touchdowns in his last two contests. There is also the added motivation of denying a Super Bowl berth to the team that could have drafted him. Play Rodgers on Sunday, despite the tough matchup.
San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Kendrick Bourne is worth a gamble for Sundays NFC Championship against the Green Bay Packers. Bourne scored the only receiving touchdown for the Niners in the Divisional Round, adding to his 2019 resume as a legitimate red-zone threat. The third-year pro has just 33 catches this year, including the playoffs, but collected six scores. Despite his risks as a zero-floor fantasy option, Bourne has emerged as a trustworthy target in clutch situations.
San Francisco 49ers running backs Tevin Coleman and Raheem Mostert are both bankable DFS options in Sundays NFC Championship against the Green Bay Packers. The two backs combined for 163 rushing yards in the Divisional Round, with Coleman riding a hot hand to two touchdowns. Considered a backup for the latter half of the regular season, Coleman played 46 percent of snaps last Sunday compared to Mosterts 34 percent. While the touch forecast for either back is cloudy, the Niners draw one of the worst run defenses in the NFL. The Packers ranked 23rd in rushing DVOA during the regular season with the second-worst defensive line in the league, yielding 4.96 adjusted yards per carry. With a likely floor of 10 touches for each Coleman and Mostert, both runners have great opportunities to make a splash.
San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle (ankle) was a full participant in Thursdays practice and should be fine for Sundays NFC Championship against the Green Bay Packers. Kittle scared Niner Nation with soreness on the left ankle he chipped earlier this year, but confirms he feels fabulous. Kittle factored more as a blocker in last Sundays Divisional Round blowout but the Niners passed just 19 times. The All-Pro is an integral piece in all facets of the offense so is worth his premium TE1 price in DFS on Sunday.
Detroit Lions WR Danny Amendola is set to become an unrestricted free agent, but he's a 'prime candidate' to be re-signed, in the opinion of The Detroit Free Press' Dave Birkett.
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.