Aaron Rodgers’ collarbone injury impacts everyone in fantasy football. Rodgers is one of the most consistent and healthiest quarterbacks in the league. He’s going to be out up to six weeks with a fractured collarbone.
At least that’s an injury fantasy owners can cope with. It’s serious enough to miss a few games but not enough to put him on the shelf for the season. The other nice thing about it is that Rodgers should be healthy when it comes to fantasy playoff time. So should Randall Cobb.
This kind of an injury (even in the non-throwing shoulder) is one that the Packers will have to be careful on how to treat him and let him heal. Rodgers probably won’t even run for the next three weeks because you want the rehab of this to not be bumpy and jarring. He’s going to spend a lot of time on the bike to keep in shape while he waits for his collarbone to heal up. Even something like a speed bump, if taken too fast, will send waves of pain into his collarbone. It’s going to take time and a lot of softness to get Rodgers healed.
That said, the Packers are accepting donations of bubble wrap to protect their quarterback in for the next four to six weeks.
Starting quarterback Seneca Wallace nearly makes me as aroused the phrase starting quarterback Blaine Gabbert when it comes to streaming DST units for the next few weeks.
In the meantime, look for guys like Case Keenum or
Matt Schaub of the Texans to replace Rodgers. You could also check if Jay Cutler’s available on the wire as well. He is expected back this week after being down for a couple weeks with a groin injury but he could make a capable replacement.
Joe Flacco could also work with his schedule (CIN, @CHI, NYJ, PIT, MIN, @DET) as a fill-in. EJ Manuel of Buffalo is also one to keep an eye on should Rodgers be out longer than expected. He plays all three of the crappy Florida teams in succession in weeks 14-16 (@TB, @ JAC, MIA) so check for him on the wire.
Let’s go around the rest of the league and see who’s all banged up.
Arizona RB Rashard Mendenhall (toe) is expected to play for the first time since Week 7. The downside is Andre Ellington stole his job with his 154-yard performance in Week 8. The upside is Bruce Arians doesn’t seem to know how to distribute the workload between his running backs. The downside is that Mendenhall hasn’t broken 70 yards this season. Mendenhall is an RB4/RB5 at best unless Ellington gets hurt.
Roddy White (ankle) is set to play for the first time in several weeks which is good news for Matt Ryan owners. The Falcons are up in Seattle so they need as many passing weapons as they can get in light of a putrid running game. The downside is that it’s Seattle and a limpy Roddy would make an easy target for the defense to close in on. Look for Harry Douglas to benefit from White’s return and be a nice FLEX option this week.
Manuel will start against Pittsburgh after missing four weeks with a knee injury. While speedy wide out Marquise Goodwin (hamstring) is questionable, Manuel makes a nice stash as discussed above.
Carolina RB DeAngelo Williams (knee) will play this week to muddle up the Panthers’ backfield at San Francisco. Between Williams, Mike Tolbert, Johnathan Stewart and even Kenjon Barner, the Carolina backfield is a mess. Add to that Cam Newton and there just aren’t enough carries to go around.
Dallas WR Dez Bryant is dealing with a back issue but is still expected to play against New Orleans. The big question here is what’s the problem? Sources suspect he might have a herniated or ruptured disc in his back. He’s missed plays here and there with tightness and back spasms but I’d still roll with him per usual this week. Seems like his mouth is also suffering from spasms lately of the 15-yard variety.
Detroit WR Nate Burleson has been sighted in practice and could be back on the field for Week 11. Our favorite pizza security agent has been dealing with a broken arm since that famed accident. It would give the Lions a little more balance instead of having Calvin Johnson put up obscene receiving stats.
Houston RB Arian Foster is really up in the air. He’s seen other doctors for second opinions on his back and is trying to get treatment to see if he can go Sunday in a late game at Arizona. Keep in mind, he’s been active for each of the last two games and has not made it past the first series.
I think the smart move is to sit Foster this week and let Ben Tate (cracked ribs) shoulder the load against a tough Arizona run defense. Houston has their next three games at home after this one and Foster should spend as much time there as he can.
The terrible season for New Orleans WR Marques Colston continues. He’s not getting the targets he usually does. He’s bothered by a knee injury that’s limited his effectiveness and limited him in practice this week. Colston looks to be a game-time decision and it’s too tasty of a matchup to pass up against Dallas. The downside is that this is the Sunday night game and with the crapfest of Miami-Tampa on Monday night there won’t be any hope for a Plan B. Only play Colston if you don’t have any better options.
Saints RB Darren Sproles (concussion) is expected to play this week after clearing the league’s concussion protocols.
The Giants are in flux with injuries right now. RB David Wilson (neck) has been placed on IR and is done for the season. That leaves Peyton Hillis, Brandon Jacobs (limited in practice-hamsting) and Andre Brown (season debut after breaking his leg) as the running backs for the Giants. At the end of it all, the Giants ground game isn’t looking too hot. I wouldn’t run with any of these players for this week and we know Brown’s value is limited to goal-line vulture. Their passing attack has a question mark in Victor Cruz (neck) but he is expected to play against Oakland.
Darren McFadden is hurt again. I know, act surprised. This time it’s the hamstring and Rashad Jennings will get the call in his place. Jennings looks like a nice add in PPR leagues but it’s tough to say how effective he will be against a Giant defense that utterly shut down Adrian Peterson a couple weeks back. They’ve become tougher against the run since getting Jon Beason from Carolina in a trade right before the deadline.
Michael Vick is week-to-week with a hamstring issue. After Nick Foles threw seven touchdown passes against Oakland last week, Vick should have more time to heal up.
Percy Harvin of the Seahawks is also in the week-to-week category as he’s very close to making his return to the field. It would be a nice boost for fantasy teams to get him going and he’d be a strong option after Sidney Rice (knee) went down and is done for the year.
Zac Stacy of the Rams (ankle) is probable and should be used in all formats.
The San Francisco 49ers are saved for last here because their situation is very positive. They’ve gotten Mario Manningham back off the PUP list and he’s expected to play this week. Michael Crabtree is a couple weeks away. Marcus Lattimore of gruesome knee injury fame might play in Week 11 or Week 12 and LB Aldon Smith is back from a stint in rehab for his off-field issues.
This means it’s time to try and buy low on Colin Kaepernick as he’s going to be getting some nice new toys in the passing game. The 49ers DST should also see a nice boost with Smith wreaking havoc again in the middle.
San Francisco looks ready to raise hell in the second half of the season with their weapons coming back and a great schedule too. How great? Try CAR, @NO, @WSH, STL, SEA, @TB, ATL, @ARI for the rest of the season. Seattle poses the only real tough test and their last three games are against some real cream puffs.
I’ll say it now. Get in on the Gold Rush before it’s too late.
Leave your questions below and let’s get those wins this week in the playoff push. Last week, I went 51-12 and lost two games by less than two points. The doc has been hot since his little man was born in the middle of Week 4. The baby has some major positive fantasy juju flowing out of him.
The first three weeks of the season, I stood at 99-86-1. Since then, the Doc has been kicking ass to the tune of 241 wins and 140 losses (63% wins) from Weeks 4-9.
Yes, the Doc is in…the win column.