The Panthers are holding out hope Jonathan Stewart (MCL) will return in Week 17.
Stewart can be comfortably dropped in 12-team fantasy leagues, not that he had much value in the first place. He's definitely out for Weeks 15-16. The Panthers fear Stewart's MCL is torn, but apparently have info indicating he could rest and rehab the injury, and only miss two weeks. DeAngelo Williams will return to lead back duties, losing red-zone work to vulture Mike Tolbert.
ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported on NFL Insiders that Wes Welker (concussion) is "very unlikely" to play Thursday night against the Chargers.
This is Welker's second concussion of the season, and the Broncos are now playing on a short week. "They're not ruling Welker out, but it's very unlikely he'll play," said Mort. Look for Jacob Tamme to stand in as Denver's primary slot receiver, although he won't be a great fantasy option unless you're desperate. Look for more work for Julius Thomas between the numbers, and Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker to dominate San Diego's weak corners outside.
Coach John Fox wouldn't answer Monday when asked whether he would rest Peyton Manning in the event the Broncos clinched the AFC's No. 1 seed early.
Although the notion of sitting players when high playoff seeding is locked in makes sense logically, the result of doing so has rarely paid off for teams who employ the strategy. This still isn't a Week 15 fantasy concern. The Broncos are 11-2, just one game ahead of the 10-3 Patriots and 10-3 division rival Chiefs. There's still plenty to play for. Denver faces San Diego in Week 15.
Redskins placed RB Evan Royster on injured reserve with an ankle injury, ending his season.
Royster's Week 14 injury appeared significant on the field, as he could put no weight on the limb afterwards. A thoroughly underwhelming talent whose prospective fantasy value was always tied directly to the Shanahans' running scheme, Royster will be no lock to make Washington's 53-man roster in 2014.
Redskins coach Mike Shanahan told reporters Monday he is considering starting Kirk Cousins in Week 15 against Atlanta.
Cousins completed 7-of-16 throws for 59 yards in Sunday's loss to Kansas City, replacing Robert Griffin III midway through the fourth quarter down 45-10. Shanahan threatening to bench RG3 for, as he explained, the possibility Griffin might get injured in Washington's final three games is the ultimate slap in the face to owner Dan Snyder. Look for Shanahan's firing shortly, perhaps as soon as tonight. If Cousins gets the start, he'll be on the two-quarterback-league radar in a plus matchup indoors at Atlanta.
Redskins coach Mike Shanahan was noncommittal Monday when asked whether Robert Griffin III will start in Week 15 against the Falcons.
Shanahan said his priority is making sure Griffin is healthy entering the offseason, not necessarily winning Washington's next game. "If he did get injured, I’d be very disappointed if he wasn’t there in the offseason," Shanahan said. It's now possible Kirk Cousins will start after Griffin was benched in Sunday's blowout loss to Kansas City. Shanahan also refused to answer when asked by reporters Monday whether he wants to coach the Redskins in 2014.
Adrian Peterson insisted Monday's MRI on his mid-foot sprain "came back great."
Peterson is seeing a foot specialist on Monday to see if he can keep playing this season. The good news is, a Lisfranc injury has been ruled out. "Well, it’s a little painful," Peterson said. "Obviously it kept me out of the game. The MRI came back great so that’s good. Just got to get a CT scan to make sure the bone is OK." Coach Leslie Frazier conceded Monday that the Vikings' 3-9-1 record "will factor" into Peterson's Weeks 15-17 availability.
Coach Mike Munchak stopped short Monday of endorsing Jake Locker (Lisfranc surgery, I.R.) as the Titans' 2014 quarterback.
Munchak said he "still believes" in Locker moving forward, but "all things will be considered" when evaluating the future of Tennessee's quarterback position. Locker finished the regular season with an 8:4 TD-to-INT ratio as a passer with a career-best 60.7 completion rate. He still isn't enough of a finished product for Munchak to endorse as more than a 2014 competitor to start.