Another one bites the dust… Well, several actually. These injury reports are beginning to feel like Billy Joel’s list of events in We Didn’t Start the Fire. “Carson Palmer, Joe Thomas, there will be more, we promise. Jay Cutler, Mike Wallace, the entire Ravens’ offense. We didn’t start the injuries. They have been mounting since the whistle sounded.” You get the picture.
Vikings @ Browns (London’s Twickenham Stadium)
Although Teddy Bridgewater will not make his debut this week, the Vikings’ franchise QB might crack the lineup in Week 9. Meanwhile, Sam Bradford continues to be sidelined by a knee injury, but he is expected to return this season. Offensive lineman Jeremiah Sirles and defensive lineman Stephen Weatherly are both out with knee injuries, while Riley Reiff, Nick Easton, Mackensie Alexander, Stefon Diggs, and Michael Floyd are all questionable.
The downtrodden Browns got more bad news this week as Myles Garrett entered concussion protocol after experiencing symptoms on Tuesday. In what has been an up and down season for the number one overall pick, Garrett leads the Browns in sacks despite missing four games. He is officially out for this week. Fellow defenders Jason McCourty and Larry Ogunjobie are doubtful, but Jabrill Peppers and Trevon Coley are listed as questionable after practicing on a limited basis Friday.
Fantasy Impact: Minnesota is rolling thanks to their run game and brutal defense. Don’t expect that to change this week against the lowly Browns.
Oakland Raiders @ Buffalo Bills
David Amerson and Gareon Conley are both banged up in the Raiders secondary, along with safety Karl Joseph. Punter Marquette King appeared on Thursday’s report with a groin issue, but he was still a limited participant.
The Bills are also thin in the secondary as corner E.J. Gaines has been ruled out with a hamstring injury. In addition, safety Jordan Poyer is highly questionable with a knee injury he sustained last week. Buffalo has already ruled out tight end Charles Clay and linebacker Ramon Huber.
Fantasy Impact: Banged up secondary versus All Pro receivers = big trouble for Buffalo. Carr and his receivers should feast.
Indianapolis Colts @ Cincinnati Bengals
Linebacker John Simon and corner Rashaan Melvin are both out for Indy along with QB Andrew Luck whose injury situation continues to be perplexing. Kamar Aiken, T.J. Green, Ryan Kelly, and Darius Butler are all questionable, the biggest concern coming from Kelly who would leave a gaping hole in the middle of the offensive line.
Cincy has plenty of injury concerns, too, with Tyler Boyd, Ryan Hewitt, and Kevin Minter all being ruled out so far. Wide receiver John Ross, on the other hand, looks like he is ready to ball. The Bengals also expect corner Adam Jones to play despite being limited early in the week with a back injury.
Fantasy Impact: Expect a huge day from A.J. Green this week as the Colts are weak defensively. Andy Dalton is also a solid pickup for folks whose QB is injured or on a bye.
LA Chargers @ New England Patriots
Tackle Joe Barksdale is doubtful with a foot injury that has been nagging him for weeks, and it would not be surprising if he is ruled out soon. Otherwise, Melvin Gordon and Corey Liuget are questionable but expected to play.
Dont’a Hightower tore his pectoral muscle, ending his 2017 campaign early. The Pats have also ruled out defensive tackle Malcolm Brown and corner Eric Rowe. Although he is listed as questionable, wide receiver Danny Amendola plans to play, but corner Stephon Gilmore is less certain. Also questionable are Lawrence Guy, Cassius Marsh, Elandon Roberts, and Marcus Cannon.
Fantasy Impact: New England is more than capable of overcoming any injury, but their defense does not look good this year. Factor in some missing pieces, and the Chargers should be able to put up points in this matchup.
Chicago Bears @ New Orleans Saints
The statuses of receiver Markus Wheaton, linebacker John Timu, corner Sherrick McManus, and defensive end Roy Robertson-Harris are all in doubt. Hroniss Grasu and Benny Cunningham are being considered questionable, but they are unlikely to play either.
New Orleans has ruled out starting right guard Larry Warford, but otherwise they are in good shape. Willie Snead practiced fully, while Terron Armstead and Michael Thomas are questionable after being limited participants.
Fantasy Impact: Injuries should not play a major role in this matchup.
Atlanta Falcons @ New York Jets
Atlanta has already ruled out outside linebackers Duke Riley and Jordan Tripp, but defensive tackle Courtney Upshaw remains questionable with an ankle injury. Running back Tevin Coleman should be good to go after a full practice on Friday.
Tight end Jordan Leggett remains out for the Jets with a knee injury, and Gang Green has also ruled out tackle Brandon Shell and corner Buster Skrine. Defensive lineman Muhammed Wilkerson is questionable with shoulder and foot injuries, but he is likely to play.
Fantasy Impact: Atlanta has been under-performing despite being fairly healthy while the Jets are over-achieving thus far. The only big impact may come from the loss of Buster Skrine as Julio Jones is starting to find his stride.
San Francisco 49ers @ Philadelphia Eagles
The lowly 49ers are banged up on defense this week with corner K’Waun Williams and defensive lineman Aaron Lynch already ruled out. Linebacker Reuben Foster is questionable with rib and ankle injuries, but safety Eric Reid should suit up this week. On offense, tackle Trent Brown seems more doubtful than questionable with a concussion, while guard Brandon Fusco participated on a limited basis Friday and is also questionable.
Linebacker Jordan Hicks is out for Philly with an Achilles injury, but fellow linebacker Mychal Kendricks is set to return from a hamstring injury. Corner Ronald Darby would like to get back this week, and he is considered questionable with an ankle ailment.
Fantasy Impact: An 0-7 team going on the road against a 6-1 team probably tells you enough about fantasy impact with out without injuries. Carlos Hyde, the only 49er with fantasy value, has a limited ceiling this week against a tough Philly D that is getting back one of its best linebackers.
Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Luke Kuechly is on pace to play this week as he recovers from a concussion, but he received a questionable designation. Kicker Graham Gano is also questionable with a knee injury, causing concern for both the Panthers and fantasy owners. Center Ryan Kalil remains out with a neck injury along with running back Fozzy Wittaker and tackle John Theus.
The Bucs have ruled out three corners due to injury: Brent Grimes (shoulder), Robert McClain (concussion), and John Robinson (concussion). Defensive tackle Chris Baker and defensive end Ryan Russell are both questionable, as is starting QB Jameis Winston.
Fantasy Impact: Cam Newton should feast on a thin Tampa Bay secondary, so Devin Funchess and Kelvin Benjamin are in line for big games. Keep an eye on Winston as his status has an impact on star receiver Mike Evans.
Houston Texans @ Seattle Seahawks
Rookie linebacker Dylan Cole, offensive tackle Chris Clark, and defensive end Joel Heath will all miss this matchup for Houston. Another defensive end, Kendall Langford, is considered questionable along with linebacker Jelani Jenkins.
Seattle has some injury concerns as well, as tackle Luke Joeckel is out, leaving them thin on the offensive line. Running back C.J. Procise is also unlikely to play with an ankle injury. Defensive end Marcus Smith and cornerback Jeremy Lane are both questionable.
Fantasy Impact: The Texans are thin at the defensive end and linebacker positions, while Seattle is hurting on the offensive line. It is tough to say which group will come out on top, but this is not a great week to play Seattle running backs.
Dallas Cowboys @ Washington Redskins
The most accurate kicker in the league, Dan Bailey, injured himself while practice kicking in last week’s game. He is expected to miss at least four weeks, so the Cowboys signed Mike Nugent in his place. Dallas has also ruled out corner Chidobe Awuzie. Defensive tackle Maliek Collins and linebacker Justin Durant are questionable.
Tackle Ty Nsekhe and center Spencer Long are both out for Washington, as is linebacker Mason Foster. A laundry list of players are questionable, including corners Bashaud Breeland, Fabian Moreau, and Josh Norman, tackle Trent Williams, guards Brandon Scherff and Tyler Catalina, and safeties Deshazor Everett and Stefan McClure.
Fantasy Impact: Losing Dan Bailey is a blow for fantasy owners, and they should steer clear of his replacement. The Cowboys should be okay though as their defensive line is likely to turn in a big day against a weakened Redskins O-line. In fact, the visiting Cowboys could turn this game into a blowout as their offense attacks a seriously battered Washington defense.
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Detroit Lions
Pittsburgh has already ruled out tackle Marcus Gilbert, tight end Vance McDonald, and defensive end Stephon Tuitt. Fortunately, guard David DeCastro, wideout JuJu Smith-Schuster, and linebacker T.J. Watt all look like they will be good to go.
For the Lions, tackles Emmett Cleary and Greg Robinson are out, along with wide receiver Kenny Golladay. Questionable are Ziggy Ansah, wideout Golden Tate, and linebacker Paul Worrilow.
Fantasy Impact: The Steelers are hitting their stride of late, but they could hit a minor speed bump with Gilbert and McDonald out. Keep an eye on Golden Tate because he had a great deal of fantasy value when healthy.
Denver Broncos @ Kansas City Chiefs
The Broncos had a number of non-participants at Friday’s practice, but the extra day of preparation gives them more time to decide who will be able to play. It seems unlikely that Emmanuel Sanders suits up, but defensive end Derek Wolfe is determined to play despite a hand and foot injury. Denver also got good news on backup QB Paxton Lynch who was a full participant for the first time all season this week.
The Chiefs are in good shape as only Justin Houston and Laurent Duvernay–Tardiff were limited on Friday.
Fantasy Impact: Look for the Chiefs to rebound at home after two bad games defensively. The absence of Emmanuel Sanders will have a ripple effect on an already downtrodden Broncos offense.