The doctor is in and has a pile of patients to see this week. At this time of year, injuries are even more critical to your fantasy success with just four weeks left after this one. I’ll tell you which injuries will put you in a bind which ones are of no real worry.

Let’s start in Green Bay where the Packers are dealing with some wide receiver injuries. Greg Jennings had his sports hernia surgery yesterday and is going to be out for at least three weeks. No surprise there. Fellow WR Jordy Nelson missed last week’s game with a hamstring issue. He’s doing better but hasn’t been cleared to play against Arizona this week  according to the Green Bay Press Gazette.  Randall Cobb benefits from all this but Aaron Rodgers saw his passing yardage sink to less than 200 for the first time in two years.  If Nelson doesn’t play, it might be time to let Rodgers ride the pine for this week if you have a good enough backup option since the Packers take on the Cardinals at Lambeau. Green Bay has the bye in week 10 so it would make a lot of sense to sit Nelson and let him heal for the final six weeks of the season.

Over in Tennessee, the Titans had all five offensive linemen be limited in practice or less according to the Tennessean. This should be enough to make Chris Johnson owners cringe. Banged up O-line plus Chicago coming to town = CJ2K is a flex play at best. QB Matt Hasselback will have a long day and don’t expect much out of the Titan receivers until you get to garbage time. P Brett Kern could be the MVP of that game for the Titans when they play the field position game.

 The Detroit Free Press reports that the Lions have lost CB Bill Bentley to a shoulder injury. Bently went to see my hero, Dr. James Andrews, and will be out after dislocating his shoulder for the third time in eight games. The Lions’ secondary is banged up as well with S Louis Delmas and S Amari Spivey missing practice as well. This would be a big boost to the quarterback playing the Lions this week…if it wasn’t Blaine Gabbert.

Denver QB Peyton Manning is good to roll this week against the Cincinnati Bengals. The Denver Post reports this and it comes from good authority in WR Eric Decker about his thumbnail injury suffered last week.

Cleveland RB Trent Richardson suffered through some rib pain last week and chugged his way to 122 yards and a TD in the 7-6 win over San Diego. T-Rich can be used as usual this week.

Miami QB Ryan Tannehill suffered a bone bruise on his left knee last week against the Jets. He’s questionable for the game this week with Matt Moore standing by to take the start if needed against the Colts. Tannehill would make a moderate option at best and Moore would be a desparation starter. The game between Indy and Miami looks like a rushing clinic so it’s best to avoid either Miami QB.

St. Louis WR Danny Amendola is likely to make his return to action this week. Amendola started out this year as a monster, especially in PPR leagues, until his clavicle injury forced him to miss some time. The Rams had to balance out the passing attack by getting the ball to Chris Givens and Brandon Gibson. It’ll be interesting to see how Sam Bradford distributes the targets between those three receivers.

Houston WR Andre Johnson has been battling an on again, off again groin injury but is likely to play this week against Buffalo. It’s cost him practice time but has shown no indication of missing a game as of yet because of it. With the horrendous Buffalo defense on tap, Johnson should be ready for a big game against the Bills.

On the other side of the field, Bills DE Mario Williams will be making his first trip to Houston since bolting from the Texans. Williams told the Bills via text message that he was going to have surgery on his wrist during the bye week. He should be available to play for those of your who use IDPs. Of course his stat lines have been closer to LOL than OMG this season so keep your expectations modest.

Buffalo RB CJ Spiller is on the injured list but can be deployed as usual. Buffalo is merely trying to avoid being fined for being inaccurate with its injury report. They had issues with not disclosing Williams’ injury above and don’t want to go WTF when they see the notice about getting fined.

Over in Pittsburgh, the running back situation is messy to the say the least between Rashard Mendenhall, Isaac Redman and Jonathan Dwyer. The Steelers take on the Giants Sunday afternoon and will fly up to the Big Apple Sunday Morning. Mendenhall is likely to miss a sixth game this season, this one with the same Achilles’ issue that plagued him since his return from the PUP list. Redman is dealing with an ankle sprain and Dwyer had some tightness in his thigh that forced him to leave practice early Wednesday.

This situation is up in the air week to week and the Giants front four will try to take advantage of a depleted Steeler offensive line to rush Ben Roethlisberger and disrupt the running game. This might be a week to be hesitant about using any of the Steeler running backs this week. In order: Dwyer, Redman and Mendenhall would be the order to use them in this week.

Seattle is down to just 4 WRs on the roster as they have been hit hard by injuries at the position, according to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Ben Obomanu was put on IR with a hand/wrist injury that will shelve him for 6-8 weeks. Braylon Edwards’ knee bothered him Sunday morning and he was made inactive. Edwards might come back this week against Minnesota but is highly questionable. Sidney Rice and Golden Tate will lead the passing attack this week but are not recommended since Marshawn Lynch could have a big day against a suddenly leaky Vikings’ run defense.

The Dallas running back situation is screwy at best. DeMarco Murray is still out. Felix Jones is hurting and highly ineffective which would will the role to Phillip Tanner. Neither of them are good options this week against Atlanta. Dallas called for three passes on a 2nd-and-1 situation against New York. None of them are viable plays. Dez Bryant will no longer be a punt return option after muffing a kick last week against the Giants that led to a first-half touchdown.

That wraps up another clinic visit for Doc Sawbones. Hope your team stays healthy in week 9. Good luck and leave comments and questions below.

–Doc

  1. george says:
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    redman, felix jones, or greg olsen at flex?

    • george says:
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      @george, I have dwyer and had to bench him.

    • Murph says:
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      @george,

      Redman/Dwyer depending on who plays then Olsen just based on matchup and in my opinion I would stay far away from Felix as its obvious the cowboys have no faith in him what so ever. He is also dealing with several injuries of his own.

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @george, I go for Greg Olsen. Rushing against the NYG front is a tough proposition and the Steelers might be off kilter having to travel in on gameday.

      Olsen has the better matchup and Felix Jones looks like he will be overlooked as Dallas plays Atlanta in what looks like a Sunday Night Shootout. As mentioned above, Felix is banged up as well.

  2. Leeor says:
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    12 team league, PPR.
    I have Dez, and Nicks at WR. Maclin at W/R.
    I need a 2nd RB to go with Foster.

    Do I go with Stephens-Howling, Redman, or Tanner?
    Or do I take out a WR and start 2 of those 3 RB?

    • Murph says:
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      @Leeor,

      Ouch…roll with all three WR but keep an eye on Dez’s status this weekend.

      1. Redman only if Dwyer is out 2. Howling and 3. Tanner

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @Leeor, My best guess on the RB is LSH. See above on Pittsburgh and Dallas ground game situations. Tanner will get maybe 10 touches and would be a bigger roll of the dice than LSH.

      And only start 1 of those 3 RBs.

  3. Dan says:
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    With the injuries in mind, should I go with Spiller or CJ2K?

    • Dan says:
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      @Dan, That’s in a PPR league, btw.

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @Dan, I would go CJ2K here-yes-even against Chicago. With the way the Bears will cover the receivers downfield, look for Hasselback to dump it off short to CJ to try and get him into space and make things happen.

      Spiller will also have a tough matchup against Houston but I think Fitzpatrick will have better success passing the ball and loosening the number of defenders in the box.

  4. Murph says:
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    Update: Darren Sproles ruled out for Monday nights games, hand surgery

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @Murph, Update: I am totally hosed now in the Razzball Writers’ league because of this. The Multiple Scorgasms will have to be piecemeal at running back until Sproles comes back.

      (And that team is 4-4, 5th place)

      • Murph says:
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        @Andrew Nordmeier,

        Sorry to hear that Andrew at least you have 48 more teams to fall back on!!!

        Is there a projected return date for Sproles? Hand injuries are usually way less impairing than foot injuries then again the saints aren’t really playing for much this year. Who are you filling in with this week?

        • Andrew Nordmeier

          Andrew Nordmeier says:
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          @Murph, 4-6 Weeks. And I haven’t decided yet but the options are grim to say the least.

  5. Dex says:
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    With sproles out is Pierre Thomas a better play than either spiller or Larry fitz in ppr?

    • Murph says:
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      @Dex,

      Pierre is a great play this week with Sproles out but Fitz has a higher upside in PPR due to the massive amounts of targets he has been receiving lately. Still don’t know how much Ingramn and Ivory will be in the mix this week for New Orleans which might limit Pierre’s production.

      Fitz/Thomas/Spiller

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @Dex, I’d try Fitz. No one doubts his talent and he has a matchup against Green Bay that could get to garbage time early.

      Thomas will be in the mix but I don’t think he’s a better play then Fitz in a PPR.

      I’m not big on Spiller this week on PPR as I mentioned in previous answers.

  6. and1mcgee says:
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    how is Amendola returning from injury this week when they are on a bye until Week 10?

    • Murph says:
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      @and1mcgee,

      Returned to practice this thursday which is good news for owners. Great chance he is active week 10.

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @and1mcgee, That was the key was getting back to practice. The Rams are off this week which is standard for all teams that play in London the previous week.

      If you play PPR, Amendola is a great guy to grab now while he’s on bye and not many people are thinking about him.

      Besides, he’ll be in the Week 10 Waiver Wire column (hint).

  7. and1mcgee says:
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    Dwyer doubtful this week. Redman is the likely starter. Monitor situation. Hopefully Dwyer improves so I can run with him!

    • Murph says:
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      @and1mcgee,

      Be careful with any steelers running back this week. Big Ben will be set up to air it out against a pretty weak giants secondary although redman does have some upside as he is the best receiving back in Pittsburg.

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @and1mcgee, And factor in the Steelers travelling Sunday morning. This could be a mess for them since these teams are such creatures of habit when it comes to prepping for games.

      They might go straight from the plane to the stadium and we never see that anymore.

      That factor could very well screw with their minds.

  8. Bean says:
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    Greg Jennings was dropped in my 10 team PPR like I am sure he was in many leagues. Worth stashing? Picked up Amendola off the discard pile the same way but Jennings seems to be a long shot. 2 full games and a Bye missed is the schedule right?

    Drop Kendall Hunter for Jennings since he is a lotto ticket for me anyway?

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @Bean, It would be worth a shot to play the Greg Jennings lotto.

      If you get him and he comes back he could be a valuable weapon down the stretch and into the fantasy playoffs. If he doesnt you then have an easily dumpable player if you need to let someone go to pick up another guy late in the season.

      With Gore running as well as he is, Hunter’s value keeps dropping everytime Gore runs the ball.

  9. Ryan says:
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    Do I start rudolph or pettigrew this week at te

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @Ryan, Pettigrew has the better matchup and Megatron might be limited.

  10. mark danger says:
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    PPR need 3 wr and one flex with a wr/rb heres what Im doing should I make any changes?

    Julio Jones – starting
    Hakeem Nicks – starting
    Steve Smith – starting

    flex – titus young

    I also have C.J. Spiller and Stevie Johnson on the bench any chance you sub one or two in at the starting lineup?

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @mark danger, Keep it as is. Stevie isn’t worth putting in over any of them and I like Titus since Megatron might be limited to just 3rd downs according to the guys at Rotoworld.

  11. Benny says:
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    Who’d you rather have for the remainder of the season – Romo or Newton? (6pts per passing TD league)

    • Andrew Nordmeier

      Andrew Nordmeier says:
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      @Benny, Romo, his schedule is much easier and he has better receiving talent in Witten/Austin/Bryant than Newton’s Smith/Olsen/LaFell.

  12. Blurry says:
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    Would u trade miles a for Stewart and Steve johnson

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