Fantasy Football: Week 3 Injury Report
Injuries are an unfortunate part of football. It's one thing we hate having occur to not only the players we roster but within the game itself. With that said, this does create opportunities for teammates, opening up potential pickups in season-long leagues while also producing value plays in daily fantasy football.
Using the practice report, we can glean a lot of information based on who's available and what coaches are saying from press conferences. This knowledge can allow us to make emergency plans to pivot or change our lineups come Sunday morning when inactives are announced.
Based on this week's practice reports, here are a few quick-hitters to give you a leg up on lineup decisions as crunch time approaches for Sunday lineup lock.
Larry Fitzgerald has missed some practice with a hamstring injury but was not on the final injury report against the Chicago Bears. With a 25% target market share, Fitzgerald should be one of the main focal points in an anemic offense.
Fitzgerald's rookie counterpart, Christian Kirk, should be available to play after sustaining an injury during a car accident on Thursday. Kirk has played in 77% of the team's offensive snaps but only has 7 targets to show for it thus far.
Julio Jones should be fine against the New Orleans Saints after experiencing tightness in his calf, as him sitting out practice was more precautionary than anything. To no surprise, Jones has been the NFL league leader in air yards at 477 and no other receiver is close to his 71% air yards market share.
Alex Collins missed practiced on Wednesday due to an illness but was a full go on Thursday and Friday. Collins has been a victim of game flow early this season and has only seen 20 touches to through two weeks. It wont be any easier against the Denver Broncos, who are a top-three defensive unit against the run, per numberFire's rankings.
Giovani Bernard popped up on the injury report this week with a knee injury, but is expected to start on Sunday in Joe Mixon's place. Bernard should be a popular daily fantasy play across all platforms, as he gives salary relief ($6,400 on FanDuel) and is the projected to be the 15th-highest scorer at the position, per numberFire projections.
Aaron Rodgers was a non-participant this week with his knee injury, but will practice on Saturday. Given the severity of the injury, missing practice appears to be the normal cadence for Rodgers moving forward. The Green Bay Packers will travel to play the Washington Redskins who are the 5th-best pass defense by numberFire's metrics.
Houston Texans receivers DeAndre Hopkins (foot) and Will Fuller (hamstring) were limited during practice this week but are expected to play. Houston has a concentrated offense that runs through Hopkins (35% target market share in Week 2) and Fuller (29% target market share in Week 2), which make a nice DFS stack pairing.
The Indianapolis Colts have a slew of injuries to their key skill players, but fortunately for them T.Y. Hilton (quad) is trending upward. Hilton is 13th in Receiving Net Expected Points (NEP) this year and should have plenty of opportunities to build on that in a game where scoring figures to be in abundance, with a 47.0 over/under.
Leonard Fournette (hamstring) has been limited this week, but is making positive improvements from last week, and should shoulder his normal workload against the Tennessee Titans if he is active. With his projected return, T.J. Yeldon and Corey Grant should still retain their stash candidacy in the event that Fournette has a setback.
LeSean McCoy (ribs) was limited throughout the week, and his status is still up in the air for Sunday. Should McCoy miss the game, his direct backups Chris Ivory (15% snap share in Week 2) and Marcus Murphy (37% snap share in Week 2) would split running back duties. As current 16.5-point underdogs to the Minnesota Vikings, Murphy is the preferred pickup here, as he has the better pass catching chops (seven targets to Ivory's two), but realistically all of the Buffalo Bills running backs are off the board for fantasy purposes this week.
Carolina Panthers rookie cornerback Donte Jackson missed the first two practices, but made his return on Friday and is listed as questionable. If he were to play, expect Jackson to matchup against Cincinnati Bengals speedster John Ross, who is close to minimum price on FanDuel at $5,100.
Cole Beasley was a surprise addition on the injury report on Thursday with an ankle injury, but practiced on Friday. No Dallas Cowboys receiver has yet to out-snap Beasley, and current snap shares dictate this group to be one of the few committee corps in the league. If Beasley can't go on Sunday, that would leave his 21% market share to be distributed amongst the wide receiver by committee target pool.
Marquise Goodwin will be a game-time decision against the Chiefs. This could open up another opportunity for rookie Dante Pettis to receive starter snaps. There should be plenty of opportunities for Pettis to make his impact in the game, as the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers have the week's highest over/under (55.0).
Marcus Mariota (elbow) is still questionable per head coach Mike Vrabel. If Mariota sits, expect Blaine Gabbert to start for the Tennessee Titans. In that scenario, the Jacksonville D/ST ($5,000 on FanDuel) would make a nice pivot off of the chalk Minnesota D/ST in tournaments.
Darius Slay is questionable for Sunday night's bout against the New England Patriots after suffering a concussion against the San Francisco 49ers. If Slay were to miss time, this would be a boost to Patriots perimeter receivers, and in particular Chris Hogan. Hogan has had a slow start to the season as he is currently ranked as 57th in numberFire's Receiving NEP.
Marvin Jones was a late add to the injury report on Friday and is questionable (ankle) against the New England Patriots. If Marvin can't play on Sunday, Matthew Stafford's target tree gets narrower and Kenny Golladay and Golden Tate could see additional targets. Golladay (fifth) and Jones (sixth) are tops in the league in terms of air yards.
Dalvin Cook (hamstring) is out this week against the Bills. This places Latavius Murray as an RB2 that should have a favorable game script against the Buffalo Bills as a 16.5-point home favorite. Run to your waiver wire as Murray is owned in only 39% of ESPN leagues.
Devonta Freeman missed practice for the second straight week and is officially out. Expect Tevin Coleman to get a significant amount of touches. Last week, with Freeman out he played 63% of snaps, and had 16 rushes for 107 yards, along with 4 catches for 18 yards. Tevin Coleman is currently numberFire's RB7 in this weeks projections.
Eric Berry has yet to practice this season and that carries onward into this week. Jimmy Garoppolo should have a nice day given Kansas City Chiefs' defensive struggles. They currently have been pegged as the worst defense in our power rankings and Berry's absence will be missed.
Jay Ajayi (back) and Darren Sproles (hamstring) have been ruled out this week, which leaves Corey Clement, Wendell Smallwood, and practice squad call-up Josh Adams as the Philadelphia Eagles running backs this week. Clement figures to be the biggest beneficiary here, who filled in for Ajayi last week and had a 42% snap rate with 11 touches against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Clement is a bargain bin value play across DFS platforms this week.
Jack Doyle (hip) missed the final day of practice and has been ruled out against the Philadelphia Eagles. Eric Ebron should see an increase in snaps (37% this year) and target volume, as he's been targeted just 9 times this season as a part-time player. Ebron is available across 60% of ESPN leagues if fantasy players are looking to stream at tight end.
Doyle's teammate Marlon Mack (hamstring) has also been ruled out. The Indianapolis Colts will continue to deploy Jordan Wilkins and Nyheim Hines as their primary backs. When Mack missed their Week 1 game, Wilkins led the backfield in touches (17), but Hines (9 targets) took over on passing downs.
New York Giants starting cornerback Eli Apple (groin) has been ruled out for the Houston Texans game. This matchup will boost Will Fuller's ceiling with B.W. Webb in his coverage. Webb is currently Pro Football Focus' seventh-worst cornerback based on defensive grade.
As is with all injuries, each individual situation is fluid. Make sure to keep tabs throughout the weekend and keep up with our numberFire player news feed for up-to-date reports prior to kickoff. Good luck this week!
Gabriel Garrido is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Gabriel Garrido also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Kr0nik. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his/her personal views, he/she may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his/her personal account. The views expressed in his/her articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel