It’s time to run to the waiver wire and put your claim in for Kansas City running back Knile Davis. Star running back and first-round pick Jamaal Charles left the loss at Denver in the first quarter with an ankle sprain and didn’t return. Davis took the field and had 79 yards and two touchdowns on 22 carries. He added a pair of catches as well, and looked sharp. Davis could be a starter on some other running-back hungry teams and he should be on your fantasy roster this week. Charles (sprained ankle) looks to be questionable at best for this week against Miami. He’s been diagnosed with the dreaded high ankle sprain, and Davis should capitalize on it. The Dolphins are giving up 101 yards a game on the ground so the opportunity is there for Davis. The week after, it’s a Monday night tilt at New England (122.5 yards per game) for the Chiefs. Week 5 is a brutal matchup at San Francisco. We know how tough they are to run on, hunh Matt Forte? It wouldn’t make sense for the Chiefs to bring back Charles to get pounded into ground chuck before the team’s bye week on Week 6.

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The first week of the NFL season reminded us of how volatile this league can be. We saw rookie Allen Hurns of the Jacksonville Jaguars score touchdowns on his first two receptions. Then we saw the Jaguars blow a 17-0 lead and lose 34-17 to Philadelphia. Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens went from being suspended for a few more days, to being suspended indefinitely by the league in a 48-hour span shaking things up. Injuries played a big part as well, with tight ends Jordan Cameron and Jordan Reed suffering injuries and sending rosters into flux. He can be dropped in redraft leagues but hang on to him in dynasty leagues. Thankfully, we’ll help you make sense of it all on the waiver wire this week. We’ll break it down by position and ownership on ESPN, NFL and Yahoo Leagues to help you out.

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As we open the season, all of our NFL teams have the same goal— to play in Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale, Arizona on February 1. Our fantasy teams have the same goal— to play in our respective league’s Super Bowl whatever week (usually 16) that it falls on. For some of you, getting there will be difficult if not impossible. Others will find the road to be easy, and cruise through the season. For me, I fall in the latter when it comes to getting to the Super Bowl. That’s mainly because I live about 40 minutes north of University of Phoenix Stadium. Getting to the Super Bowl is easy for me, even if traffic sucks.

That’s what I’m here for. To help you navigate the journey from your starting point to your league’s Super Bowl. We’ll help you avoid the roadblocks of poor play, the detours of bye weeks, and the potholes of injuries. That said, let’s turn the key on the season and start giving some recommendations for players who can be picked up now to help you out in the long term.

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Ouch! That hurts! A lot! Get the cart and take this guy back to the locker room. Let’s check out his (insert body part here) and…oh my…this doesn’t look good. Let the coach know he’s done for the year and put him on injured reserve.

That scene has played out across the NFL countless times this season. Because of how often it’s happening, we have enough players to put together an amazing team of players who are or have been on injured reserve this season.

We took into consideration players on the traditional injured reserve list as well as those who have had a stint on the designated-to-return injured list as well. This was going to be an end-of-season feature but we have enough talent down for the count that we can do it now.

Without further delay, let’s meet the All-IR Team for 2013.

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In most leagues this is championship week. It also means 80 percent or more of players are done for the season. For those who still remain, let’s take a look at the key injuries that can make or break your title dreams.

Adrian Peterson (foot, groin) was limited in practice the last couple days as was Toby Gerhart (hamstring) and Matt Asiata didn’t practice either so the Vikings’ running back situation looks like a big mess heading into this week against Cincinnati. Today should provide clarity as to who will do the running against the fifth-best rush defense in the league.

If Peterson’s available, you play him. Gerhart is more of desperation play and Asiata looks like someone to avoid all together. While Asiata scored three times last week, keep in mind his low yardage totals. Asiata should only be used in TD-only formats if both AP and Gerhart are out.

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Doc is back and has another room full of patients after last week’s spate of season-ending injuries.

Rob Gronkowski was lost for the season after tearing two ligaments in his knee. Arizona lost safety Tyrann Mathieu to a torn ACL and LCL which ends his strong rookie season. Baltimore wide receiver Brandon Stokely suffered a concussion and is done for the season. Green Bay put seldom-used receiver Myles White on IR with a knee injury and it leaves the Packers few options in the passing game. Brandon Jacobs of the Giants is done after getting a cartilage graft in his left knee.

You get the idea. People are dropping like flies at the end of the season but most of them aren’t fantasy-relevant which makes it easier to sift through the impacts of said injuries.

Gronkowski being done makes Danny Amendola and Julian Edelman better options, especially in PPR formats. When you factor in Kenbrell Thompkins (hip) being questionable for this week, it makes both of those wide receivers Tom Brady’s top targets. Shane Vereen is also back there too but when it comes to deep passes he really has two choices.

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We’re coming down to the last week of the regular season in most leagues and the first week of the playoffs in others. Hopefully you have your playoff spot wrapped up and are planning your path to postseason glory.

But Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers (collarbone) shouldn’t be a part of those plans. He practiced yesterday for the first time in the month since he suffered his collarbone injury against the Bears. Matt Flynn is expected to get the start this week against Atlanta at Lambeau Field.

If you’re hanging on to the hopes of having Rodgers for the playoffs, don’t. The Packers are 0-4-1 without him this season and his absence has dragged down the values of the Green Bay wide receivers. At 5-6-1 their only real chance of trying to make the playoffs is to win the NFC North. They have virtually no shot at a wild card and losses to Philadelphia and San Francisco really hurt their chances in that regard.

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Yesterday’s games left us with two thoughts. First, how are Le’Veon Bell and Rashad Jennings going to be for next week after suffering head injuries? Secondly, where’s the Pepto? I ate waaaaaay too much and it’s not sitting well. Even the turkey basted with butter every half hour that tasted like heaven.

Both of them looked wobbly at best coming off of the field. Bell’s hit looked harder since his head hit the turf after his helmet came off.

Jennings looked wobblier than Grandma’s Jell-o mold. They both had really good days but be glad they have extra days off before their next game. Look for reports on Wednesday of next week to clarify these two running backs.

Around the rest of the league we go in a short list form. Some us have to work the day after Thanksgiving, you know.

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The team that resides in the nation’s capital is having a real hard time lately. They have two key injuries this week and it’s starting to look bleak.

First they lost WR Leonard Hankerson for the season to a torn ACL. The doctors were checking his knee after an injury to his LCL suffered against Denver and that’s when they found the ACL damage.

Tight end Jordan Reed (concussion) is also up in the air for this week’s game too. He’s sat out the last couple days’ worth of practice and his status for Monday night against San Francisco is unknown. While he has the extra day this week, he’s not an advisable start this week.

I’d also be gunshy about playing RGIII for the same reason. He’s also starting to run out of receivers. It’s basically down to Santana Moss and Pierre Garcon, the latter of whom I am amazed is still healthy and upright at Week 12. Fred Davis isn’t inviting at the tight end spot. Alfred Morris adds nothing in the passing game (three receptions this season) so Roy Helu would be the only real pass-catching option out of the backfield.

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The big injury news of the week is Houston running back Arian Foster undergoing back surgery to repair and alleviate issues stemming from a disc in his lower back. It’s a good thing this finally happened. He missed OTAs with the issue and was having pain down into this legs during the little time he was on the field a training camp.

What is a ruptured disc anyways?

When a disc is ruptured, the jelly-like shock-absorbing “filling” for lack of a better term oozes out. When that does, it can put pressure onto the spinal cord itself and that could be the source of the pain for Foster.

Other symptoms include pain and weakness in the legs (not good for a running back), shooting pains when doing simple things like sneezing or using the toilet, and a low chance of loss of control in the bladder and/or bowel.

Maybe that explains why Houston has crapped the bed for the last two months and lost seven in a row—ruptured disc.

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