Maurice Jones-Drew (hamstring) said he hopes to play in Sunday's game against the Bills, but didn't sound overly confident.
Jones-Drew won't try to practice until Friday. As of now, it sounds like he's still feeling plenty of soreness in his hammy and is doubting his ability to be near 100 percent for Sunday. Owners should have already been exploring other options, including speedy backup Jordan Todman.
Reggie Bush (calf) said he expects to play in Monday night's game against the Ravens.
Bush aggravated his calf pull while warming up in the snow at Philadelphia on Sunday. Now he gets a long week and a home date on the friendly turf of Ford Field. Players are often overly optimistic on their health, but Bush couldn't ask for a much better setup. He can be penciled into fantasy lineups for now as we wait to see how he progresses in practice later this week.
Toby Gerhart (hamstring) won't try to practice until Friday.
Coach Leslie Frazier said he's a little more optimistic on the status of Gerhart than Adrian Peterson (foot). Still, the inability to even practice a little bit early in the week suggests a Grade 1 or 2 pull for Gerhart. We won't have a real read on this situation until Friday afternoon, leaving owners in a messy spot. Matt Asiata would start if both Peterson and Gerhart sit.
Coach Leslie Frazier said he's a little more optimistic on the status of Toby Gerhart (hamstring) than Adrian Peterson (foot).
Peterson is out of his walking boot and vowing that he feels good enough to play. The Vikings won't find out until Friday, when he'll test his mid-foot injury. Frazier did admit that Peterson wouldn't play without practicing and that the team will err on the side of caution with their franchise player. It would make zero sense to rush him back to a 3-9-1 team if there's any chance at all of an aggravation. Meanwhile, backup Gerhart won't try to practice until Friday either. Owners need to roster both backs for the next three days.
Matt Cassel will start Sunday's game against the Eagles.
Christian Ponder (concussion) has been cleared, but he won't get his job back. The Vikings will instead stick with Cassel, who has gone 37-of-71 (52.1 percent) for 508 yards with three touchdowns and one interception over the last two weeks -- an overtime win against the Bears and a brutal late loss at Baltimore. Cassel isn't a fantasy option himself, but he improves the outlooks of Greg Jennings and Cordarrelle Patterson. Ponder was inept at getting that duo the ball.
According to ESPN, Willis McGahee (concussion) seems "very doubtful" for Sunday's game against the Bears.
McGahee's likely absence leaves Chris Ogbonnaya as a potential starter against a Bears defense that has surrendered 100-yard rushing days to six consecutive opponents (Eddie lacy, Reggie Bush, Ray Rice, Benny Cunningham, Adrian Peterson and DeMarco Murray). Ogbonnaya isn't the runner that those guys are, but he's averaging 5.33 YPC on 42 carries this season and is a big part of the passing game (41 catches on the season). He'll get the Bears on a short week and at home. Owners in search of plug-n-play RB2 candidates could do much worse than gambling on Ogbonnaya.
Vincent Jackson (hamstring) was not spotted at the beginning of Bucs practice Wednesday.
Jackson also rested last Wednesday and was slapped with a questionable tag on Friday before playing on 59-of-68 snaps against the Bills. We'd expect a similar routine this week, although the Bucs have a difficult matchup with the 49ers. V-Jax will be a WR2.
Coach Chuck Pagano said T.Y. Hilton is still fighting a minor shoulder injury.
Hilton's shoulder got dinged up in Week 12, causing him to rest during some practice sessions. We don't think it's affected him terribly in games. Hilton's arrow is pointing back up this week thanks to Da'Rick Rogers/LaVon Brazill taking some attention away and a home matchup with the Texans on tap. Last time Hilton faced Houston, he went off for seven catches, 121 yards and three touchdowns.