Fantasy Football

Fantasy Football Week 11 Injury News & Report: Palmer Done

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With fantasy playoffs around the corner, any injuries to your key players can derail your fantasy post-season hopes. I know I talk of handcuffs for RBs throughout the season, but it is especially at this time where their insurance can help keep you in the running should disaster strike. It is also a time where the IR players from early season injury or long suspensions are allowed to return. Healthier fantasy teams can usually afford to hold bench spots for these players, but other injuries coupled with untimely bye weeks force most teams to release these players to the waiver wire early on.

If you are in the running for a playoff spot and are able to project with some confidence your playoff seeding, now is the time to prepare your team for that matchup. No other week is more important than that first round. If an injury on your team is a questionable return for that game, don’t rely on that timetable. Look for an outlet player with a good matchup for when the time comes. For those in several leagues, this might be a daunting task to be looking that far ahead. However, if you are in only 2 or 3 fantasy leagues, it should be something you can assess comfortably.

We lost another QB2 for the season this week. Other than that, new injuries to key players were few and minor. The more important news tended to be the returns for the week.


As an added feature of this column, here are the CBS & FOX announcer assignments for Sunday, Week 11


Quarterbacks
Carson Palmer (ARI)Carson Palmer (ARI) The Cardinals should remain a contender after the loss of Palmer, but how far can they run in the post-season? With Drew Stanton the odds are cut. As for fantasy, he should not be your QB. Granted, next to Newton and Cutler these days, Stanton looks good. But you’re better off with someone like Kyle Orton if needs must. So who does Stanton tend to target? The quick answer is no one in particular. In his three starts, between Fitz, Brown and Floyd the distribution slightly favors Fitz – but not by much.
Status: Out for the season with a torn ACL

Running Backs
Ronnie Hillman (DEN) I guess it should be no surprise to anyone from the pattern we have seen with the Denver backfield that the coaches are content to rotate the depth chart. Next up for touches is now C.J. Anderson; with presumably Juwan Thompson or more likely Montee Ball (who is returning) up next. Anderson held the role Knowshon Moreno was supposed to have last year until Moreno pulled away from Ball and Hillman. The committee system and/or “hot hand” approach has grown in favor with a lot more teams this year and Denver has their own style to it. What will all this mean for the fantasy draft next season? It’s too early to say for sure until after the 2015 draft comes along, but it does make drafting the RB2 a harder decision.
Status: Out with foot injury; return week 13?

Giovani Bernard (CIN) The hip injury will likely keep Bernard out another week. After the painful loss to the Browns, Jeremy Hill has a good chance to rebound against the Saints. There’s now an issue that may arise when Bernard returns about how Hill will be utilized. Even owners of both Hill and Bernard are in something of a dilemma – especially if Hill pulls off another beast performance. It wouldn’t matter so much if this was going on earlier in the season, but with fantasy playoffs coming, the issue of backfield priority is not something you want conflicting your lineup. If Cincinnati would field their RBs strictly by the chart like Kansas City does, then it would be Bernard and done is done. We can only hope that the Bengals will return to the committee as a roughly a 70%-30% split like it was before Bernard’s hip injury.
Status: Questionable – likely will not play.

Arian Foster (HOU) The extra rest from the bye-week apparently hasn’t made Foster available for this week against the Browns. As usual, Foster himself was non-committal. Owners should have Alfred Blue on their bench with the playoffs around the corner.
Status: Doubtful – Game time
UPDATE: Although there was optimism throughout the week that Foster would play on Sunday, his status turned doubtful on Friday. With an untested Mallett on a fresh start coupled with Foster likely out, you have start the Browns DST.
Fri Nov 14 5pm ET

Ryan Mathews (SD) The Chargers are facing some challenges to gain some uptick in their playoff aspirations. The team will now have a two-headed attack with Matthews and Oliver. Branden Oliver’s fantasy value will now begin shifting away from standard to PPR as he will have something similar to a Danny Woodhead role. As for Mathews, he’s ready to go and will take the bulk of the ground yardage going forward. I consider both players now RB2 with Oliver more leaning toward flex, but Mathews has all the upside.
Status: Probable – Likely plays

Reggie Bush (DET)Reggie Bush (DET) Even though Bush is trying very hard to get back into the Detroit offense with resolve, his ankle continues to hinder his efforts with limited action. His fantasy relevance continues to diminsh to the point where Theo Riddick is actually becoming a stronger play. Riddick has been gaining fantasy interest for some weeks now – especially in PPR. Even though he had a poor performance last week, he’s still a tempting stash and not as speculative as he once was.
Status: Doubtful – Unlikely
UPDATE: Bush was already a question mark this week. He would have been one of the weaker flex plays for Sunday in any case.
Fri Nov 14 5pm ET

Lamar Miller (MIA) You might want to consider sitting Lamar Miller out for Thursday night against the Bills. He was limited in practice on Tuesday and although he might play on a short week, he might be limited to light duty in so that he can have the longer rest to heal up for Week 12. Danny Thomas and the undrafted Damien Williams are fantasy lightweights for this game. Though, this is just the type of game that fantasy risk takers play for. Where someone like Williams pulls off a big night and causes waiver rush, then goes quietly away for the rest of the season.
Status: Questionable – day to day, likely plays

Adrian Peterson (MIN) Circle Nov. 22 on your calendar. That is the last day under the CBA that Peterson’s grievance hearing must be resolved. But the league is only one hurdle to get Peterson back on field. The Vikings‘ front office are not full of purpose to get Peterson back on the field either. My own speculation is that the NFL and the Vikings realize that keeping this issue hermetically sealed until next season is not better than getting it over with sooner. However, moving too fast could give the wrong impression to public perception. The league and the Vikings are a business of worldwide advertising and endorsements, this is why PR has to be given weight in what they decide. The way I see it, having Peterson on the field with all the media attention this late in the season will fade as playoff time and the Superbowl approaches. Then by next year, the new season can start without Peterson’s issues resparking as much media interest. Keep AP stashed.
Status: Exempt/Commissioner’s Permission List

Rashad Jennings (NYG) At long last we might see Jennings back for week 11. Sounds good, right? Well, it’s still a day to day thing and he was limited in Wednesday practice. It’s been a long stash for those patient enough to keep him. Friday is the day to watch and I will provide an update. The Giants are in their annual November slump, so they could really use him to break this trend.
Status: Probable – Day to day
UPDATE: Jennings is now probable and is a likely start. The matchup isn’t great, but since Jennings has more versatility as a pass catching back, that is a good reason to start him this week as a low RB2 or flex.
Fri Nov 14 5pm ET

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Wide Receivers
Sammy Watkins (BUF) The Bills coach was playing keep-away with the media on both the conditions of Watkins and Fred Jackson last week. The assumption is that Watkins will play against the Dolphins at less than 100% on Thursday night. It’s not a good matchup. From the way Brent Grimes was able to cover Megatron on his own without any safety assistance, it’s not overthinking it to save Watkins for another day if you have another choice. Besides, it’s the Thursday night game. Thursdays seem to be the most ruinous to fantasy expectations.
Status: Questionable – likely plays

Brandon Marshall (CHI)Brandon Marshall (CHI) The only player from the Bears that had fantasy survival last week was Marshall. But it came at a cost. Marshall once again has hurt an ankle and will be questionable, although likely, to play against the Vikings. Like last time, if he does play and his deployment is for decoy purposes, I can only suggest that owners beware. The thing is, even healthy big name WRs have bad games and you started them. So boldly start Marshall unless you have another good option. He’ll be a part of my Friday evening updates.
Status: Questionable – likely plays

Allen Robinson (JAC) The season is over for Robinson. Not a real loss in fantasy since bye-week spot starts are no longer going to be required in a couple of weeks. He would have been on a bye week himself for Week 11. The Jags overall have been a disappointment, but for the emergence of Denard Robinson. Next season they will have another good draft position. The defense is better, but when an offense cannot sustain long drives, a good defense can only do so much. They really have the look of an expansion team, but this time without the franchise building skill Tom Coughlin brought to Jacksonville all those years ago.
Status: Out for the season

Brandon LaFell (NE) has a case of strep throat. I myself have had this condition and I can tell you it is no joke. It’s a very severe sore throat that saps your energy. However, LaFell was able to practice on Wednesday. Strep usually clears up quickly with antibiotics, so there’s every chance he could still be well enough to play in the marquee matchup against the Colts.
Status: Questionable – Day to day

Tight Ends
Kyle Rudolph (MIN) is putting in limited practice this week. I said last week there was some chance he could be returning for week 11 after the bye. The target for that return looks promising, but remained questionable until Friday. He’s one of the upper TEs and should be owned in all leagues. Even if he is not playing this week he should be stashed if possible.
Status: Probable – Likely plays
UPDATE: Rudolph goes to probable for Sunday’s game against the Bears. He enters the game with a good matchup. The Bears have given up the most FPs to tight ends this year. The only problem I can see is if Bridgewater will automatically make the connection with him as the two have barely had any in-game experience together.
Fri Nov 14 5pm ET

Delanie Walker (TEN) The concussion protocol is likely to keep Walker out of the lineup for week 11. He has already had a concussion last month, so he’ll be monitored much more closely this time. Walker has declined as a dependable TE during the second half of the season. Whether his concussions have anything to with it is unknown, but his fantasy performance was better when Locker was quarterbacking.
Status: Concussion protocol

Anthony Fasano (KC) There’s a good chance Fasano could be out or limited against the Seahawks. I don’t usually like to report “good news” injuries for obvious reasons, but if Travis Kelce gets an expanded role, how can I not? The Seahawks give up the 4th most FPs to TEs. If Fasano is limited then there’s even more reason to get Kelce into your lineup for Sunday. Anthony Fasano has a knee bruise that is limiting his mobility. Get well soon Anthony.
Status: Questionable – Day to day

Defenses… etc.
»Erik Walden (LB – IND) The Colts are hoping to get Walden back in time for Sunday to help neutralize the Gronkowski threat.
»Branden Albert (T – MIA) It’s a big hit to the Dolphins for Albert to done for the season on IR. This is where pass defending and inside running plays suffer the most. He was carted off the field in Detroit with a torn knee.
»Cortland Finnegan (CB – MIA) will not be playing on Thursday with a bad ankle.


CBS & FOX announcer assignments for Sunday, Week 11

CBS
1:00
Broncos at Rams (Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts, Jenny Dell)
Texans at Browns (Andrew Catalon, Steve Beuerlein, Steve Tasker)
Vikings at Bears (Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon, Stacey Dales)
Bengals at Saints (Greg Gumbel, Trent Green, Evan Washburn)

4:05
Raiders at Chargers (Spero Dedes, Solomon Wilcots, Scott Kaplan)

FOX
1:00
49ers at Giants (Kevin Burkhardt, John Lynch, Pam Oliver)
Falcons at Panthers (Dick Stockton, Kirk Morrison, Kristina Pink)
Buccaneers at Redskins (Thom Brennaman, David Diehl, Laura Okmin)
Seahawks at Chiefs (Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston, Tony Siragusa)


4:25
Lions at Cardinals (Chris Myers, Ronde Barber, Jennifer Hale)
Eagles at Packers (Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Erin Andrews)


You can follow me on Twitter @RRSSavill for more news and to ask me any questions about your team. Also be sure to like us on Facebook, Google+ and Instagram for all updates from Fantasy Six Pack.

About Richard Savill

Richard is an NFL Fantasy Football Writer and Editor of Fantasy Six Pack. Host of The Fantasy Edge Podcast. FantasyPros Contributor. Member of the FSWA. Richard is known for his "outside the box" insight into NFL fantasy football. Winner of the 16-Team 2015 FSWA challenge.

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