Jon Sousa breaks down some of the key injured players in Week 13.
As we head down the stretch here in the NFL season, injuries not only play a huge roll in the playoff race for all 32 teams, but they also have a huge affect on your fantasy title hopes as well. Some key point producers were injured in action last week, and their decision to play or not could have huge implications on your lineup this week. Let’s look at some of the big names, and their status for Week 13
Knowshon Moreno, RB Denver Broncos:
Moreno suffered a left ankle injury in last week’s loss in New England, and was seen in a walking boot and on crutches after the game. However, he looks to be on track to play this week in another huge matchup against the Kansas City Chiefs. Moreno was listed as probable on the official injury report, and will look to match or improve his 227-yard performance from last week.
Julius Thomas, TE Denver Broncos:
Thomas missed last week’s game against New England entirely with a right knee injury, and was replaced by Jacob Tamme (5 receptions on 5 targets for 47 yards and a touchdown). Thomas has been limited in practice this week, and he looks to be on track to play on Sunday against the Chiefs. However, the Chiefs are giving up the fewest fantasy points to tight ends in the NFL this season, so anything less than a fully healthy Thomas should be cautioned by fantasy owners.
Andre Ellington, RB Arizona Cardinals:
Ellington was held out of practice on Friday with a knee injury that he sustained in practice on Thursday. Ellington was officially listed as questionable, although the rookie from Clemson was hopeful that he would play on Sunday. Ellington has been splitting carries with veteran Rashad Mendenhall, and has shown big play ability all year. He faces the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 13.
Adrian Peterson, RB Minnesota Vikings:
AP was held out of practice on Thursday with a groin injury, but was officially listed as probable on the Vikings injury report Friday. The Chicago Bears have been very suspect against the run this season, and Peterson managed to run for 146 yards and a touchdown last week against the Packers while dealing with the same injury. All signs point to Peterson suiting up, injury or not, on Sunday.
DeAngelo Williams, RB Carolina Panthers:
Williams suffered a quadriceps injury last week against Miami, and was officially listed as questionable on the Panthers injury report. Head coach Ron Rivera said that he would make a decision regarding Williams at some point today, so keep your ears open. Even if Williams suits up against Tampa Bay on Sunday, his carries will be limited by Johnathan Stewart (if healthy), Mike Tolbert, and Cam Newton in Carolina’s four-headed running attack.
Rob Gronkowski, TE New England Patriots:
Gronk was listed as questionable on the Pats injury report due to problems with his hamstring, back, and forearm. This shouldn’t be too much of a surprise to his owners, as the big tight end has had injury problems all season long. Unless any injury setbacks are heard of, consider Gronkowski good to go on Sunday against the Texans, who have given up six touchdowns to tight ends this season.
Stevie Johnson, WR Buffalo Bills:
Johnson did not take the field the last time that the Bills played in Week 11, but with a bye week and a full week of practice under his belt, he looks ready to go for Sunday’s matchup against Atlanta in Toronto. When healthy, Johnson is the best receiver for the Bills, although he has seen a decrease in production in the weeks leading up to his injury. Johnson was listed as probable on the team’s injury report.
Tony Gonzalez, TE Atlanta Falcons:
Gonzalez did not practice Wednesday and was limited on Thursday, thus leading to his questionable status on the team’s injury report. However, the limited practice should been seen as just a precaution for the veteran, and he should be ready to go on Sunday against the Bills. Despite the Falcons struggles this year, Gonzalez is still one of the NFL’s most reliable and consistent tight ends. Gonzalez leads the Falcons with 14 red zone targets.
Jordan Reed, TE Washington Redskins:
Reed has been limited all week due to a concussion that caused him to miss last week’s game against the 49ers. However, both head coach Mike Shanahan and Reed himself have been very positive about his status for Sunday Night game against the Giants. Reed should suit up, and provides a boost in his and quarterback Robert Griffin III’s fantasy value.
Marshawn Lynch, RB Seattle Seahawks:
Lynch has been limited all week in practice, but seems to be ready to go for Monday Night Football at home against the New Orleans Saints. After a full practice on Friday, Lynch’s availability shouldn’t be in question. Lynch has been one of the most productive fantasy running backs at home, logging eight touchdowns and 98 fantasy points at Century Link Field in five games this season.
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