| Dez Bryant limited with back injury -- Thu Dec 26 2:30 pm --|
Not believed to be serious
|Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant injured his back in Wednesday's Christmas Day practice but team officials don't believe it's anything serious.
Bryant has dealt with back issues in the past. (ESPN Dallas)|
FF Today's Take: The Cowboys enter their Week 17 NFC East showdown against the Philadelphia Eagles with back injuries to their quarterback (Tony Romo) and top receiver (Bryant). In addition to the number of injuries it has suffered on defense, Dallas has little chance to put up much of a fight against the Eagles.
| Calvin Johnson sits Thursday -- Thu Dec 26 1:05 pm --|
Status for Week 17 uncertain
|Calvin Johnson (knee), DeAndre Levy (foot), Bill Bentley (brain), LaAdrian Waddle (ankle), John Wendling (ankle), Chris Houston (toe) and Dylan Gandy did not practice for the Lions today. (Detroit Free Press)|
FF Today's Take: We probably won't know until later in the week whether or not Megatron will play Week 17 against the Vikings. It won't be a surprise if Johnson is inactive on Sunday.
| Rueben Randle misses practice Thu. -- Thu Dec 26 12:30 pm --|
Reason for absence coming later today
|The Giants have already seen enough trouble plague their wide receiving corps this season. That unfortunate trend continued today when wide receiver Rueben Randle was a surprise absence from workouts. The team said an announcement, possibly injury-related, is coming soon. (NJ.com)|
FF Today's Take: No word yet as to why Randle missed practice. The Giants receiving corps has a plus matchup against the Redskins defense in Week 17.
| Jordan Cameron not cleared yet -- Thu Dec 26 11:15 am --|
Browns TE still missing from practice
|Browns TE Jordan Cameron (concussion) hasn't been cleared to practice yet. (Mary Kay Cabot via Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: It will be a surprise if Cameron is able to get clearance and play in the Browns season finale against the Steelers. Look elsewhere for your fantasy tight end in Week 17.
| Wes Welker returns to practice -- Wed Dec 25 1:10 pm --|
Status for Week 17 uncertain
|The Broncos got three gifts on Christmas Day, in the form of Wes Welker's, Derek Wolfe's and Kayvon Webster's returns to practice. Welker, a receiver, hasn't practiced since he suffered a concussion in the team's Dec. 8 game against the Titans, and he's missed the past two games.
FF Today's Take: We won't get a decision on Welker's status for Week 17 until later in the week but it won't be a surprise if Welker sits out the finale. We should now more on Friday.
| Megatron, Pettigrew, Bell miss practice -- Wed Dec 25 1:00 pm --|
Lions could be without key personnel in Week 17
|Wide receiver Calvin Johnson, tight end Brandon Pettigrew, running back Joique Bell and starting right tackle LaAdrian Waddle were among the nine players who did not take part in the Lions’ Christmas practice today. Johnson is battling knee and ankle injuries, and the Lions (7-8) are weighing whether to shut him down for the year. Pettigrew missed last week’s loss to the New York Giants with a high ankle sprain. (Detroit Free Press)|
FF Today's Take: The Lions placed Pettigrew on IR so he will miss Week 17, meaning Joseph Fauria will get the start at TE. Megatron has been battling a knee injury for some time now and he's no guarantee to play this week.
| Decision on Rodgers expected Thu. -- Tue Dec 24 1:00 pm --|
Yet to be cleared by doctors
|Quarterback Aaron Rodgers said he underwent a scan this week and a decision would be made Thursday whether he will play Sunday against the Chicago Bears. Rodgers said his performance in practice has led him to believe he’s close to returning, but he reiterated what has been said before, that he has yet to be medically cleared because not enough healing has taken place in the collarbone.
(Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)|
FF Today's Take: If Rodgers doesn't play, Matt Flynn will once again get the start in a game with the Bears to decide the NFC North and a playoff spot.
| Romo reportedly out for season -- Mon Dec 23 5:20 pm --|
|Tony Romo will miss the rest of the season because of a back injury, a league source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter on Monday. A source told ESPN.com's Todd Archer that it's too early to tell if the injury will require surgery.
Romo said his back, which was sore going into Sunday's comeback victory over the Washington Redskins, began to bother him after a hit in the first half. Romo had surgery in April to remove a cyst from his back and did not take a snap until the team reached training camp in July. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: Let the Romo ridicule begin again; the Cowboys face an uphill battle against the Eagles' offensive juggernaut without their starting quarterback. Romo had surgery on his back in the offseason to remove a cyst, but suggested this injury is in a different spot. Kyle Orton will get the start - the 70th of his career - but his first since the 2011 regular-season finale as a member of the Chiefs.
| Von Miller suffers torn right ACL -- Mon Dec 23 5:10 pm --|
LB faces 6-9 monh recovery timetable
|The Broncos have lost Von Miller for the season after tests Monday confirmed he suffered a torn ACL in his right knee.
"It's a blow," Broncos HC John Fox said Monday. "Much like losing a guy like (left tackle) Ryan Clady earlier in the season. But our guys will deal with it. Nate Irving filled in fairly early in the game (Sunday at Houston) and I thought did a very good job." (Denver Post)|
FF Today's Take: Miller suffered the injury in the first quarter of the Broncos' Week 16 victory over Houston on Sunday. He will have to wait a week or two for the swelling to go down, then undergo surgery. Recovery is 6-9 months, which means he won't be back until the start of training camp in late July at the earliest. As a result, he'll be in a race to make it back in time for the season opener of the 2014 season.
|Bears sticking with Cutler -- Mon Dec 23 4:50 pm --|
Sacked seven times in embarrassing Week 16 loss
|HC Marc Trestman extinguished the idea of the club re-installing Josh McCown as the starting quarterback in Week 17 when Trestman confirmed he is sticking with Jay Cutler for the Packers contest. Cutler did not have a great game in Philadelphia (73.8 quarterback rating), but the Bears had serious pass-protection issues. Cutler got drilled for much of the game. But even if Cutler had thrown four interceptions (he threw one, a pick-six), the Bears have made their decision. Cutler is the guy. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: It's impossible to deny what McCown did for the offense, but he's 34 and accomplished much of his production against the three of the worst pass defenses in the league (Green Bay, Minnesota and Dallas). As tired as some NFL fans get of hearing it, Cutler has elite arm talent and was thriving under Trestman before getting hurt. The Bears are making a smart choice by collecting all the information they can before making a possible $100 M decision on Cutler in the offseason.
| Carl Nicks could have nerve damage -- Mon Dec 23 4:40 pm --|
|Multiple sources have told FOX Sports in recent weeks that G Carl Nicks has seen several doctors and is planning to see a foot specialist soon to determine why he's experiencing symptoms similar to those he faced last year when he was placed on injured reserve with a toe injury. One of the sources said Nicks has been told he might be dealing with nerve damage that has affected the strength and sensation in his foot.
Sources say Nicks has received mixed messages on whether he will be able to resume his career. (Fox Sports)|
FF Today's Take: One of the sources said Nicks has been told his current issues are not related to the MRSA infection he contracted in the summer. Nicks returned to play two games in September but tests revealed his infection had returned - or perhaps never left his body. Nicks hasn't played since. Nicks is slated to earn $7 million in base salary in 2014, $6 million of which is guaranteed for injury only. His potential loss dims the long-term outlook for all of the Bucs' skill players.
| Peterson far from 100% in Week 16 -- Mon Dec 23 4:25 pm --|
Hampered by foot and groin injuries
|Last Sunday, when HC Leslie Frazier told Adrian Peterson he wouldn't be playing against the Philadelphia Eagles, Peterson was livid. He tried to plead his case to play, told reporters that "the decision was taken out of my hands," and said he was "devastated" not to be on the field despite a sprained foot and strained groin. When Peterson got back on the field on Sunday, he looked tentative and unable to explode past defenders. He had carried just 11 times for 45 yards when Frazier made the decision after halftime to take Peterson out.
"My body is just not responding the way I want it to right now," Peterson said. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: For owners with Week 17 titles on the line, expect Matt Asiata and/or Joe Banyard to receive the bulk of the touches in the backfield. There's no benefit to Peterson playing and, quite frankly, the Vikings only stand to worsen their draft position (and decrease their chances of landing a top rookie quarterback prospect) by "trying to win". Minnesota is locked into a top-eight pick in May's NFL Draft.
| Megatron hampered by two injuries -- Mon Dec 23 4:15 pm --|
WR dealing with knee, ankle woes
|Calvin Johnson was reduced to a decoy and a bystander in Week 17. He was targeted four times, caught three of them for 43 yards. HC Jim Schwartz said that on top of the right knee issues he’s dealt with all season, he’s been hampered by an ankle injury the last two weeks. Schwartz was asked if he would shut Johnson down now that the Lions were out of the playoffs, and would Johnson need surgery?
“I don’t think he needs surgery,” Schwartz said. “He doesn’t have anything that’s surgical, at least at this point. His ankle was very sore and his knee remained sore." (Detroit News)|
FF Today's Take: Johnson wasn't targeted in the second half, so the offense essentially fell apart when Schwartz benched Reggie Bush. At this point, it doesn't make a lot of sense for Detroit to push Megatron for a meaningless Week 17 game. Schwartz is almost certain to be gone after the season, so it will be up to a new coaching staff to get this talented group of Lions back into the postseason.
|Bush benched after fumble -- Sun Dec 22 6:45 pm --|
Joique Bell does heavy lifting in Week 16
|Reggie Bush, the Detroit Lions’ biggest free-agent acquisition of the off-season, found himself benched for the second time in six games Sunday because of recurring fumble problems that have left a black mark on the season. Bush lost his fourth fumble of the year in the first half of Sunday’s 23-20 overtime loss to the Giants and playing sparingly the rest of the game. (Detroit Free Press)|
FF Today's Take: Joique Bell carried the ball 20 times and had 10 receptions in Week 16 while bush rushed 12 times and caught 2 passes. Theo Riddick played in the second half while Bush watched from the sidelines. The Lions are in free-fall, having lost four of their last five games and have given away a golden opportunity to make the playoffs.
| Steve Smith injures knee -- Sun Dec 22 6:30 pm --|
Will have an MRI Monday
|Carolina Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith will undergo an MRI on Monday for what he described as a sprained knee.
Smith suffered the injury in the first quarter of Sunday's 17-13 victory over the New Orleans Saints. Smith would not speculate on if he might be ready for next weekend's regular-season game at Atlanta, where the Panthers (11-4) can wrap up the NFC South title and a first-round playoff bye. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: Domenik Hixon replaced Smith in the lineup and caught a TD pass late in the fourth quarter. Smith said he felt his knee pop which is never a good sign. He should be considered Questionable for Week 17 until we learn more details.
| Romo to have MRI on back -- Sun Dec 22 6:00 pm --|
Expected to play Week 17
|Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo said he will undergo an MRI on his back on Monday, but he does not believe it will jeopardize his availability for next week's showdown against the Philadelphia Eagles. Romo said his back, which was sore coming into Sunday's victory over the Washington Redskins, troubled him after a hit in the first half. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: Romo had surgery this past off-season to remove a cyst from his back but this is a different situation. He was limping during the fourth quarter but in all likelihood Romo will be on the field and starting Sunday night against the Eagles.
| MJD is active for Jaguars -- Sun Dec 22 11:30 am --|
Jordan Todman's value for Week 16 takes a hit
|RBs Adrian Peterson and MJD officially are active. (Adam Schefter via Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: Jordan Todman's value for Week 16 takes a hit. Jones-Drew has been bothered by a hamstring injury for a couple weeks and it's unknown how big of a role he'll play in today's game. It's hard to trust Todman as a RB2 on this news.
| Palmer, Fitzgerald expected to play -- Sun Dec 22 9:00 am --|
Both players listed as Questionable
|Despite being listed as Q for today's game, Cards QB Carson Palmer (elbow, ankle) and WR Larry Fitzgerald (concussion) are expected to play. (Adam Schefter via Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: Both players have a tough matchup on the road against the Seahawks. Palmer (sprained ankle) won't be a recommended fantasy play while Fitzgerald can be considered a WR3.
| Pettigrew will sit Week 16 -- Fri Dec 20 3:45 pm --|
Joseph Fauria expected to start
|Tight end Brandon Pettigrew was officially ruled out with a sprained left ankle. (Detroit Free Press)|
FF Today's Take: Joseph Fauria is expected to see increased targets with Pettigrew out. Fauria has 12 catches on the season... seven of them going for touchdowns.
| Adrian Peterson expected to play -- Fri Dec 20 3:30 pm --|
Limited in practice on Friday
|Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson is listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the Cincinnati Bengals, but after missing a game he felt he should have played, Peterson doesn't plan on sitting out again.
"I've got another day to rest," he said Friday. "Tomorrow is going to be good. As far as the foot goes, I'll be ready to roll." (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: Peterson is going to be less than 100% but fantasy owners are going to have a hard time benching AP if he's active on Sunday. The Bengals represent a difficult matchup giving up the sixth fewest fantasy points to running backs this season.
|Matt Flynn expected to start -- Fri Dec 20 12:15 pm --|
Rodgers participated in individual drills
|Again, Matt Flynn took the first-team reps over Aaron Rodgers for the Green Bay Packers at Friday's practice inside the Don Hutson Center. So it appears that Flynn will start a fourth straight game for the Packers. And for the seventh straight game, the Packers will likely be without Rodgers due to his fractured collarbone.
(Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)|
FF Today's Take: Rodgers won't be back for fantasy football championship week. Matt Flynn will get the call and expect to see a lot of Eddie Lacy once again in Rodgers absence.
| Jordan Cameron ruled out -- Fri Dec 20 11:45 am --|
|TE Jordan Cameron has been ruled OUT and CB Joe Haden is questionable for Sunday's matchup against the New York Jets. (Cleveland Browns via Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: This was expected as Cameron hasn't practiced all week after suffering a concussion in last week's game. Gary Barnidge is likely to start at TE for the Browns but isn't worth fantasy consideration.
| Welker sits Thursday -- Thu Dec 19 5:00 pm --|
Likely won't play in Week 16
|For the third consecutive practice, there was a dearth of W's on the field for the Broncos Thursday, with Derek Wolfe, Wes Welker and Kayvon Webster all sitting out. Welker has missed more than a week with a concussion he suffered against Tennessee.
FF Today's Take: Speculation is that Welker (concussion) will miss another week meaning Andre Caldwell will see increased targets from the slot.
| Cruz has knee surgery -- Thu Dec 19 3:30 pm --|
Will miss the remainder of the season
|New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Thursday for an injury that likely ends his season. Cruz had the debridement performed by Dr. James Andrews in Pensacola, Fla. The procedure involved the removal of cartilage and is not considered a major operation. (ESPN)|
FF Today's Take: You can scratch Cruz off your fantasy team for the remainder of the season. Rueben Randle and Hakeem Nicks will get the start with Jerrel Jernigan being used in the slot.
| Rodgers sharp in practice -- Thu Dec 19 2:50 pm --|
Still needs to be cleared by medical staff
|Packers HC Mike McCarthy: I will have an announcement tomorrow (regarding Aaron Rodgers' status). Aaron looked very good in practice today. (Tom Silverstein on Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: Rodgers is close to a return and it seems like it is a matter of whether it will be this week or next week when he suits up. However, the Packers are typically very conservative when it comes to their players' injuries and have exercised caution every step of the way so far with Rodgers. At the very least, we should all find out tomorrow whether Rodgers or Matt Flynn will go against Pittsburgh on Sunday.
| Cobb practices for second straight day -- Thu Dec 19 2:20 pm --|
Still unlikely for Week 16
|WR Randall Cobb worked for the second straight day but still looked extremely limited. (Rob Demovsky on Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: Consecutive days of practice now suggest he might be ready to go by the time the playoffs roll around should the Packers make it there, but he's not going to be a fantasy option again this year.
| Ryan Griffin likely to start again -- Thu Dec 19 2:04 pm --|
Texans unlikely to get Daniels or Graham back this week
|Rookie TE Ryan Griffin may get his second start Sunday when the Texans host Denver. Garrett Graham didn’t practice Wednesday because of a hamstring injury that sidelined him for Sunday’s loss at Indianapolis and might be a game-time decision again.
“Garrett’s about the same as he was last week,” interim coach Wade Phillips said.
Pro Bowl TE Owen Daniels (fractured fibula) has been eligible to come off short-term injured reserve but hasn’t been cleared by team doctors to return to practice. (Houston Chronicle)|
FF Today's Take: Assuming Daniels and Graham cannot go, Griffin has some fantasy appeal given that Houston figures to be in pass-happy mode for most of Sunday's game against the Broncos. Matt Schaub tends to lean on his tight ends - especially in the red zone - and Griffin is coming off a six-catch, 62-yard game last week. Owners scrambling for a replacement for Jordan Cameron or Rob Gronkowski could do a lot worse than the Texans' rookie.
| Pettigrew misses practice Thursday -- Thu Dec 19 12:05 pm --|
|Brandon Pettigrew missed his second straight practice today because of an ankle injury he suffered at the end of Monday night’s 18-16 loss to the Baltimore Ravens. He was on crutches as he made his way through the locker room Wednesday but declined to talk to reporters. (Detroit Free Press)|
FF Today's Take: The Lions added TE Matt Veldman from the practice squad, a sure sigh that Pettigrew is likely to sit out this week's game against the Giants. Joseph Fauria could see increased targets in Pettigrew's absence putting him on the TE2 radar.
|Stevie Johnson expected to miss Wk16 -- Thu Dec 19 11:45 am --|
Mourning the death of his mother
|Buffalo Bills receiver Steve Johnson is expected to miss Sunday’s game against the Miami Dolphins while he mourns the death of his mother, coach Doug Marrone said Wednesday. (Buffalo News)|
FF Today's Take: With Johnson out of the lineup Robert Woods will be the only Buffalo receiver worth consideration in Week 16. He's a WR4 with Thad Lewis under center.
| Jordan Cameron sits with concussion -- Thu Dec 19 11:30 am --|
Status for Week 16 uncertain
|Browns cornerback Joe Haden (hip pointer) and tight end Jordan Cameron (concussion) remained idle today during practice. Both of them were hurt this past weekend in a 38-31 loss to the Chicago Bears, so their availability for Sunday at the New York Jets is in question. (Akron Beacon Journal)|
FF Today's Take: Cameron owners should be preparing to be without their Browns' tight end for Week 16. Ryan Griffin from Houston could be an option if you're searching for a tight end to use in Championship Week.
| Welker sits out practice Wednesday -- Wed Dec 18 1:20 pm --|
|Missing on Wednesday were cornerback Kayvon Webster, receiver Wes Welker and defensive end Derek Wolfe. Welker has been out since suffering a concussion against Tennessee.
FF Today's Take: Welker has suffered two concussions in the last month and remains a question mark for Week 16. Welker owners should have plan B in place. Andre Caldwell would see increased snaps is Welker sits out again.
| Keenum out, Matt Schaub to start -- Wed Dec 18 1:10 pm --|
Texans to have new starting QB and RB for Week 16
|Matt Schaub will start at quarterback against Denver on Sunday because Case Keenum has ligament damage in his right thumb, Texans interim coach Wade Phillips said Wednesday.
Phillips said Keenum suffered the injury when he was sacked for the fourth and last time in Sunday’s 25-3 loss at Indianapolis. Keenum’s thumb was in a splint today at practice, and he couldn’t participate. (Houston Chronicle)|
FF Today's Take: Schaub starting at QB may benefit Andre Johnson more than anyone as Case Keenum has struggled in recent weeks. Schaub and the Texans should be playing from behind most of the day giving Schaub and AJ garbage time value.
| Ben Tate placed on IR -- Wed Dec 18 1:00 pm --|
Dennis Johnson expected to start
|Today, Ben Tate was placed on injured reserve because one of his four cracked ribs that had healed was cracked again. This time, team doctors said he would be unable to play with the injury. (Houston Chronicle)|
FF Today's Take: Tate has been gutting it out for weeks now with cracked ribs. Tate is scheduled to be a free agent at the end of the season and could very well be a starting for a different team in 2014. Dennis Johnson is now expected to get the start in Week 16 but will only be a desperation play against the Broncos on the road.
| Rodgers not yet cleared to play -- Wed Dec 18 12:45 pm --|
Lacy sits Wednesday, expected to play
|(Aaron Rodgers) Still hasn't been cleared by medical staff. Same work pattern. Threw the ball well. Looked sharp. Doing better. (Eddie Lacy sitting out practice) Just being smart. Not worried. Expect him to play Sunday.
FF Today's Take: Rodgers got some reps in practice on Wednesday but no word on who the starting QB will be or if Rodgers has a chance to play this week. We should know more later in the week.
| EJ Manuel out, Thad Lewis to start -- Wed Dec 18 12:10 pm --|
Buffalo QB battled knee injuries during rookie season
|For the third time in four months, Buffalo Bills rookie quarterback EJ Manuel has been sidelined with a knee injury.
Bills coach Doug Marrone announced this afternoon Manuel won't play Sunday against the Miami Dolphins in Ralph Wilson Stadium. Backup quarterback Thaddeus Lewis will start. Jeff Tuel will be the backup. (Buffalo News)|
FF Today's Take: On another note, WR Steve Johnson did not practice with the team on Wednesday as his mother passed away last Saturday. The Bills passing game is off the fantasy radar for Week 16.
| Cruz unlikely to play Week 16 -- Wed Dec 18 11:45 am --|
Concussion, sprained knee
|Cruz (concussion/knee) was one of 10 Giants that appeared on the team's injury report today. None of them are practicing.
"He's going through the concussion protocol but he also has the knee that'll probably prevent him from doing anything," Tom Coughlin said. (NJ.com)|
FF Today's Take: It's almost a guarantee that Cruz will not play this week meaning Hakeem Nicks, Rueben Randle and Jerrel Jernigan will be Eli's targets on Sunday. The Giants are playing out the string, meaning all three receivers are risky fantasy plays.
|Saints release K Garrett Hartley -- Tue Dec 17 5:00 pm --|
Expected to sign Shayne Graham
|The New Orleans Saints waived kicker Garrett Hartley on Tuesday after missing two field goals against the St. Louis Rams. Cornerback Chris Carr was also waived. The Saints will reportedly sign veteran Shayne Graham, according to Fox Sports. Graham, who has been in the league since 2000, is a Pro Bowler who has made 245-of-287 lifetime kicks. (Times Picayune)|
FF Today's Take: Hartley made 22-30 field goals this season but missed a 26-yarder and had another blocked on Sunday. Graham will have marginal fantasy value as there are better K1 options.
| Jags to place Shorts on IR -- Tue Dec 17 12:15 pm --|
Wide receiver battling groin injury
|Jaguars placing WR Cecil Shorts on IR later today. (Ryan O\'Halloran)|
FF Today's Take: Shorts has been dealing with a groin injury for the majority of the season and is expected to have surgery during the off-season. Ace Sanders and Mike Brown will be the starting wideouts in Jacksonville moving forward but neither are worthy of fantasy lineups.
| Ellington, Palmer expected to be OK -- Mon Dec 16 3:20 pm --|
Both should be able to play through lower-body injuries
|S Rashad Johnson has a high ankle sprain. It's a concern. Andre Ellington should be OK. Carson Palmer has low grade ankle sprain. (Darren Urban on Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: In two weeks, the Cardinals have lost Tyrann Mathieu and Johnson, making the back end of their defense a concern. Ellington's status will take on extra importance should Larry Fitzgerald be forced to miss a game with a concussion, which is likely. Palmer was rumored to have suffered a high ankle sprain, but should be good enough to go against Seattle in Week 16.
| Jordan Reed still having headaches -- Mon Dec 16 3:15 pm --|
TE hasn't played since suffering concussion in Week 11
|HC Mike Shanahan: says Jordan Reed still has a headache today. Still not cleared. (Chris Russell on Twitter)|
FF Today's Take: Reed has went from a player that was expected to miss one week to a player who may have a long-term issue with head trauma. After being listed as questionable last Friday, Reed was downgraded to out on Saturday and missed his fourth consecutive game. It is becoming increasingly unlikely he will return this season.