Adam Levitan

Last Minute Decisions

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Week 6 Injury Questions

Saturday, October 15, 2011


As the season moves along, we’re seeing more and more long-term injuries. That means players all over the field are being asked to play out of position, and the wideout spot is no exception.

We’re going to see a few guys on the outside this week that aren’t used to playing there. David Nelson hasn’t played anything other than the slot since college. Harry Douglas has been a slot receiver for the vast majority of his career. And Ted Ginn is getting a chance to start in what looks like an awful fit for Alex Smith’s style. Naaman Roosevelt moves into a slot role and Victor Cruz is getting a long-term tryout there.

As we get set for Week 6, we’ll have our eye on how these receivers are handling their new roles.  

Of course, the Rotoworld News Page will be humming all Sunday morning to bring you official word on all your injured players ahead of kickoff. And to make sure you’re prepared, read every word of these rankings from Gregg Rosenthal/Chris Wesseling in combination with Evan Silva’s unprecedented Matchup Column.

If you want to draft a new team just for this week, check out SnapDraft here.

OK, let’s get to the hurt folks:

1 P.M. GAMES
BILLS at GIANTS
* Brandon Jacobs (knee) is out. With Bills’ top run-stuffer Kyle Williams (foot) in doubt as well, Ahmad Bradshaw has an up arrow.
* Donald Jones (ankle) is out at least a month. Look for David Nelson outside and Naaman Roosevelt in the slot.

COLTS at BENGALS
* Joseph Addai (hamstring) is a no go. Look for Delone Carter and Donald Brown to rotate pretty evenly in a tough matchup.  

JAGUARS at STEELERS
* Rashard Mendenhall (hamstring) is not even listed on the injury report. Look for 15-20 touches.
* Mewelde Moore (ankle) remains out, opening up all the backup for Isaac Redman.

EAGLES at REDSKINS
* Tim Hightower (knee) is expected to be active and may very well start. But we’re expecting Ryan Torain to have the hotter hand and thus handle most of the work.
* Chris Cooley (knee) had his knee drained this week. He’s off the radar.

49ERS at LIONS
* Josh Morgan (foot) is done for the year and Braylon Edwards (knee) remains sidelined. That leaves Ted Ginn as the No. 2 receiver opposite a healthy Michael Crabtree.
* Tony Scheffler (concussion) is out. Perhaps Brandon Pettigrew gets an extra target or two.

RAMS at PACKERS
* N/A
 
PANTHERS at FALCONS
* Julio Jones (hamstring) is out. Harry Douglas draws the start as an interesting sleeper in what projects as a very high scoring game.  

4 P.M. GAMES
BROWNS at RAIDERS
* Top Browns CB Joe Haden (knee) is not expected to play. Good news for Denarius Moore.  
* Louis Murphy (groin) is ready to play a few snaps in a crowded receiving corps.

TEXANS at RAVENS
* Andre Johnson (hamstring) remains out. Jacoby Jones starts again. Meanwhile, Derrick Mason is ready to make his Texans debut but isn’t a fantasy option on limited snaps.
* Both Ben Tate (groin) and Derrick Ward (ankle) are ready to back up Arian Foster.
* Lee Evans (ankle) surprisingly isn’t ready to go. That leaves Torrey Smith as the starter.

SAINTS at BUCS
* LeGarrette Blount (knee) is likely out the next two weeks. Earnest Graham is a decent filler in PPR formats.
* David Thomas (concussion) is out. Nothing can stop the red-hot Jimmy Graham.
* Devery Henderson (calf) is ready to play as the No. 4/5 option in the passing game.  
 
COWBOYS at PATRIOTS
* Miles Austin (hamstring) and Dez Bryant (quad) are both full gos coming out of the bye.
* Aaron Hernandez (knee) played 65 snaps last week and came out of the game healthy. Get him going.
* BenJarvus Green-Ellis (toe) is expected through a questionable tag. Stevan Ridley could see some extra work. Danny Woodhead (ankle) looks like a true game-time call.

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
VIKINGS at BEARS
* Percy Harvin (rib) should be fine, but the Vikings refuse to feature him on offense.
* Earl Bennett (chest) is not expected to play, but Dane Sanzenbacher is really just a desperation option.

MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
DOLPHINS at JETS
* Daniel Thomas (hamstring) may not be 100 percent but he has been practicing. Look for him to suit up as a true game-time call. Note that backup Lex Hilliard has been getting extra reps this week. 

SURVIVOR PICK OF THE WEEK
I anticipated that 80 percent of remaining entries would use the Giants last week. Of course, that’s a perfect time to fade that team. Of course, I choked and used the Giants. So we’re out. Sigh.

If you’re still in, big congratulations. Chances are there aren’t that many people left fighting. If I was still alive, I’d advise the Packers as the most likely winner. The Steelers are also a strong play as Blaine Gabbert on the road against that defense is a recipe for disaster. If you want to get sneaky, I think the Bears will play well after their Monday night meltdown.

I’d avoid the Saints as they are on their third straight road game. I’d also avoid going against the teams coming off a bye like Miami and Cleveland.    

MY TOUGHEST DECISION OF THE WEEK
In a 16-team, full-PPR league, my WR3 choice came down to James Jones or Mike Sims-Walker. Thankfully, I had Jones in my lineup last week due to MSW’s bye. But chasing or expecting a repeat of Jones’ numbers from last week is asking for trouble.

Jones remains the No. 3 wideout and No. 4 option in the passing game. And the Packers figure to be sitting on a big lead for most of this one. Still, Sims-Walker is a bigger name than talent. Danario Alexander is the Rams’ big-play receiver and Sims-Walker won’t be able to separate from Tramon Williams or Charles Woodson. So I’m rolling with Jones and praying he burns a miserable, banged-up Rams secondary for a big one early.



Adam Levitan is in his sixth season covering football and basketball for Rotoworld. He won the Fantasy Sports Writers Association award for Best Series in 2011 and 2009, and ESPN's overall fantasy football title in 2000. Find him on Twitter.
Email :Adam Levitan



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