Well, folks, the NFL season is halfway over. At this point, you are either right in the thick of vying for a fantasy championship, or you are basically out of luck. Make sure you check the one and only comprehensive injury report, so you do not get caught off guard in these crucial weeks.
Atlanta Falcons at Carolina Panthers
Outside linebacker Duke Riley has been ruled out, and running back DeVonta Freeman has been limited by an abdomen injury. Otherwise, the Falcons are looking good.
Ryan Kalil is out again with a neck injury, as is John Theus, who is dealing with a concussion. Trai Turner and Fozzy Whittaker are questionable, while Cam Newton continues to be limited by his shoulder.
Fantasy Impact: Look for running back Tevin Coleman to make a bigger impact than usual this week with Freeman limited. Newton continues to struggle because of his shoulder, and he will be at a bigger disadvantage this week as his top receiver was traded to Buffalo.
Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans
After dragging the Andrew Luck saga on for most of the year, the Colts have finally decided to place their franchise QB on Injured Reserve. Outside linebacker John Simon, corner Quincy Wilson, and running back Matt Jones have been ruled out, too. Tackle Anthony Castanzo is questionable with a knee injury, and he was a limited participant on Friday.
Devastating news came out of Houston this week as rookie sensation Deshaun Watson tore his ACL in a non-contact drill during Texans practice. The prolific QB had just had his best game of the season, only to have his rookie campaign cut short. It also seems unlikely that defensive end Joel Heath and linebacker Dylan Cole will be able to play this week after being out of practice on Thursday.
Fantasy Impact: If you have held onto Luck all season, you can finally use that bench spot for someone else. Sadly, Watson’s injury also has a trickle down affect on wideouts Will Fuller V and DeAndre Hopkins who both got a huge boost when Watson took over the Texans’ offense. It may be wise to start different receivers this week to see if Tom Savage can be anywhere near as productive.
Cincinnati Bengals @ Jacksonville Jaguars
Linebacker Kevin Minter is out again along with receiver Tyler Boyd. Fellow receiver Brandon LaFell and defensive end Michael Johnson are questionable. Safety Shawn Williams was a limited participant in practice, although he has not been given an injury designation for the game.
Jacksonville has a very short list of injuries, with offensive lineman A.J. Cann and Cam Robinson being considered questionable as well as receiver Marqise Lee who is battling a knee injury.
Fantasy Impact: If Michael Johnson cannot play, look for running back Leonard Fournette to have more success busting runs to the edge. Keep an eye on Lee if you have been utilizing him in your flex slot.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New Orleans Saints
Corner Brent Grimes is doubtful due to a shoulder injury, and QB Jameis Winston remains limited by a shoulder ailment. Receiver Adam Humphries appeared on the report this week with a rib injury, so monitor his status. Corners Robert McClain and Josh Robinson were both full participants this week as they attempt to return from concussions. Consider them questionable.
A whopping (note sarcasm) three people appeared on the Saints injury report this week. The only bad news is that all three of those players were offensive linemen. Guard Andrus Peat and tackle Terron Armstead have been limited while guard Larry Warford has been a non-participant.
Fantasy Impact: A battered offensive line certainly will not do any favors for Drew Brees, and he will be particularly at a disadvantage if the Bucs get two of their corners back on the field. Winston’s shoulder remains a tricky element when deciding whether to play Mike Evans, but you almost cannot pass on him.
LA Rams @ New York Giants
The Rams are a healthy unit heading into Week 9 with only a couple big name concerns. Safety Cody Davis has been out with a thigh injury, but luckily, LA has Lamarcus Joyner back to alleviate the problem. One glaring concern, however, is left guard Rodger Saffold who missed practice for non-injury related reasons. The Rams do not have an official backup listed at that position.
New York, on the other hand, has a lot of major ailments. Defensive end Olivier Vernon still is not practicing, nor is center Weston Richburg. Offensive lineman Justin Pugh is also doubtful due to a back injury, and linebacker B.J. Goodson has not been practicing because of an ankle problem. Linebackers Jonathan Casillas and Calvin Munson have both been limited along with corner Dontae Deayon.
Fantasy Impact: Todd Gurley should be able to run rampant against a beat up Giants defense. Don’t look for New York to put up much of a fight in this one.
Denver Broncos @ Philadelphia Eagles
Denver ruled out tackle Donald Stephenson, but the good news is that Emmanuel Sanders is officially questionable. Guard Ronald Leary and linebacker Todd Davis are questionable as well.
Zach Ertz is questionable for Philly, but head coach Doug Pederson says he will play. The only other player on the Eagles report is Ronald Darby who is more doubtful than questionable.
Fantasy Impact: If Sanders can return this week, it would be a huge boost for a struggling Denver offense.
Baltimore Ravens @ Tennessee Titans
Somehow, mere days after nearly having his head taken off by Kiko Alonso, QB Joe Flacco was back at Baltimore’s practice. He seems no worse for the wear as the Ravens travel to Tennessee. Wide receiver Mike Wallace also cleared concussion protocol and is likely to play along with fellow wideout Jeremy Maclin who has spent a few weeks battling a shoulder ailment. Jimmy Smith continues to rest his tender Achilles, but his status is not in doubt. The Ravens also got tight end Maxx Williams back at practice, and the look about the healthiest they have all season. Wideout Michael Campanaro and running back Terrance West remain out, however.
Tennessee has the advantage of coming off a bye, and it looks like Marcus Mariota is at or near full strength. Unfortunately, running back DeMarco Murray did not participate in the first two practice sessions this week as he continues to deal with a hamstring issue. Hamstrings seem to be the biggest problem in Tennessee as receiver Corey Davis and safety Jonathan Cyprien are both doubtful with injuries of their own.
Fantasy Impact: If Murray cannot play, Derrick Henry will carry the load again Baltimore’s 30th ranked rush defense. However, the Ravens D is coming off a big shutout, and they are looking to reverse the recent trend of struggling versus the run. Do not expect Flacco to light up the Titans even if his full receiver group is back in action.
Arizona Cardinals @ San Francisco 49ers
Bad news, fantasy owners, it does not look like David Johnson is coming back this year. Time to drop him from your bench. Although the Cards have a short report, they could be without Karlos Dansby who is nursing finger and hamstring injuries.
Reuben Foster is looking to make his return this week for the 49ers, but guard Brandon Fusco is looking more and more doubtful. Meanwhile, the Niners placed Pierre Garcon on IR this week with a neck injury.
Fantasy Impact: The season is basically over for both these teams, and there is little fantasy value to be found on either roster. However, with Jimmy Garoppolo potentially playing at some point this season, anything could happen.
Washington Redskins @ Seattle Seahawks
Receiving tight end Jordan Reed finds himself out again this week, this time with a hamstring injury. The Skins have also ruled out defensive lineman Matt Ioannidis, guard Shawn Lauvao, and tight end Niles Paul. Tackle Trent Williams is doubtful along with tackle Ty Nsekhe and center Spencer Long. But wait, there’s more! Wideout Jamison Crowder, running back Rob Kelley, defensive lineman Matt Ioannidis, corner Bashaud Breeland, linebacker Martrell Spaight, and guard Brandon Scherff are all questionable.
The Seahawks have injuries a plenty, too. An eye-popping nine players missed practice on Thursday, including both starting safeties. Luke Joeckel has already been ruled out with a knee issue, as has Earl Thomas. The good news is that Jimmy Graham was back to work after missing Wednesday’s session. However, the injuries to Kam Chancellor among other Seattle defenders, including Michael Bennett, remain concerning.
Fantasy Impact: He may be an old man, but tight end Vernon Davis still knows how to ball. Expect him to see a fair share of targets against a thinned out Seattle secondary. It will be tough sledding for Kirk Cousins, however, as he works behind a patchwork offensive line.
Kansas City Chiefs @ Dallas Cowboys
Pressuring QB Dak Prescott may prove challenging for the Chiefs as outside linebackers Dee Ford and Justin Houston are battling injuries. Fortunately, Tamba Hali is back at practice, although it seems unlikely that he will be activated this week. Wide receiver Albert Wilson is borderline doubtful with a knee injury.
Dez Bryant appeared on this week’s report, but never fear as he is expected to play. The same is true for Tyron Smith and Cole Beasley, though the latter will need to exercise caution as he deals with a concussion. DeMarcus Lawrence and Maliek Collins are also expected to play.
Fantasy Impact: Dak Prescott should have a big game if Ford add or Houston are limited, especially since Bryant is expected to play.
Oakland Raiders @ Miami Dolphins
Oakland is short on corners as Gareon Conley, David Amerson, and Demetrius McCray will all miss this game. Safety Karl Joseph is questionable with a groin injury, as are linebackers Cory James and Nicholas Morrow. Seth Roberts was not on the final report, so he is full go.
Matt Moore’s time as a starter is likely done this week as Jay Cutler is questionable with broken ribs. His favorite wideout DeVante Parker, is also questionable, which is an upgrade from recent weeks. Center Mike Pouncey is ready to roll after coming off Friday’s report.
Fantasy Impact: With the Raiders looking thin in the secondary, Jarvis Landry and DeVante are both solid starts in PPR leagues.
Detroit Lions @ Green Bay Packers
The good news is Taylor Decker is finally back at practice for Detroit. The bad news is he has not been activated yet, and the Lions may be without Greg Robinson, who missed practice Thursday. Kenny Golladay remains out, and safety Don Carey seems doubtful. Ziggy Ansah and Paul Worrilow should be ready to go.
It may seem insignificant, but the Packers just placed their second long-snapper, Taybor Peppers, on IR. This creates a bevy of problems for the special teams unit, so monitor that this week. The Packers also placed safety Kentrell Brice on IR with an ankle injury, but that could be because Morgan Burnett is ready to return. Keep a close eye on Martellus Bennett, who missed practice both Wednesday and Thursday.
Fantasy Impact: Long-snappers are more important than they may seem, and that could rear its ugly head this week. Although Mason Crosby is one of the league’s best kickers, that will not matter if the holder does not get good snaps.