I was working in the lab, late one night. When my eyes beheld an eerie sight. For my monster on his slab began to rise and suddenly to my surprise… He did the Mash. The Monster Mash.
Just take these wise words in for a moment. Breathe them in. The monster… he did the mash. And don’t we all do the mash sometimes, much to the chagrin and sometimes excitement to our contemporaries? Yes, even sometimes it will truly be a “graveyard smash”.
What was this section about? Oh uh Halloween injury report. Right. There was a thread here but I got carried away in the poetry of Bobby “Boris” Pickett & The Crypt Kickers (Side note: Here’s a great TV performance of Bobby Pickett doing the Monster Mash, a real masterclass in making really weird faces and being a weirdo).
Let’s get into this week’s horror show!
The Jets, hosting the AFC North-leading Bengals, are without their latest savior Zach Wilson who is down with a creepy, spooky PCL sprain. Okay, we’ll drop the Halloween schtick. Wilson is looking to be out for about 2-4 weeks and the Jets are going to be starting… Mike White. Funny story, Mike White and I actually went to the same high school. Go Suns! But that being said, putting my fantasy stock into my pal Mikey isn’t something I’d recommend for most teams out there. With Corey Davis questionable and a piss poor OL I just can’t see Mike succeeding outside of some garbage time minutes when the Bengals inevitably blow the Jets defense out. I’d also be a bit concerned with my Mike White stock with Joe Flacco, recently traded from the Ravens, creeping and crawling around down the depth chart waiting to be the next fall guy for this… just horrible Jets team.
The Dolphins have DeVante Parker designated as questionable again, he hasn’t played since Week 4 and if he does I’m not expecting much at this point in what’s been a major regression to his production last year especially with the introduction of Jaylen Waddle. He’s a fade to me.
The Dolphins will be facing the Bills in what’s sure to be a complete and total schlacking. The Bills will be without breakout TE Dawson Knox who’s going to be out multiple weeks with a broken hand, in his place will be 2019 7th round pick Tommy Sweeney. I’m not targeting him as a flier TE this week, Josh Allen has enough targets to go to anyway with Stefon Diggs, Cole Beasley, and Emmanuel Sanders.
The Browns will be facing the Steelers at home in Cleveland and for now it looks like they’re going to have Baker Mayfield start with a torn labrum and a fractured humerus in his non-throwing shoulder. He could in theory be fine but managing the pain is going to be tough with such a severe injury and the Steelers’ front four is going to be targeting him as much as they can. At least he’ll have Nick Chubb back in action to take some pressure off of the passing game. The good news is that Baker might look so injured and uncomfortable that it might confuse the Pittsburgh defense into thinking they’re looking at Ben Roethlisberger. Zing!
For the Tennesee Titans, they will be without Julio Jones in their matchup in Indianapolis. This has been a tough year for Julio owners, myself included, who were hoping for a return to the days of old when he was a top receiver. Sadly, it’s looking more and more like those days are long gone and that dreaded decline is upon us *thunder cracks ominously*. Other than A.J. Brown, who’s an autostart when he’s available, other options in the Titans pass game include Marcus Johnson, Nick Westbrook-Ikhine, Anthony Firkser, and Josh Reynolds. Pick your poison here, I’d lean towards Firkser as my first choice but it’s all not great.
For the Colts, T.Y. Hilton is still questionable but has been practicing albeit in a limited capacity. He had a solid outing Week 6 with 80 yards on 4 receptions, showing he can still contribute with Carson Wentz slinging it but when is this guy going to be healthy enough for you to bank on? I’m not putting my chips into T.Y. as much as I was rooting for him this offseason until he can have some sustained availability.
The Eagles will be without running back Miles Sanders for at least the next 3 weeks on Injured Reserve after going down against the Raiders last week. In his place, the Eagles are hoping for some rushing production out of Kenneth Gainwell who was serviceable in garbage time in Week 7 after Sanders’ injury. He’s worth a start in a flex spot against the Lions, who are the Lions. Do you need a justification there?
Speaking of the Lions, it’s your weekly announcement that D’Andre Swift and Jamaal Williams are questionable but are expected to play. Make sure you fill that in on your bingo card! Honestly, I like the Lions in the matchup. Nick Sirianni is just the guy to get too cute and let the Lions get their first win of the year. Rooting for you, Lions fans!
The Seahawks will be playing the Jaguars at home, still under the tutelage of Geno Smith. RB Alex Collins is listed as questionable with the same groin injury he played through last week. If he’s active, I’m playing him over Rashaad Penny, DeeJay Dallas, and whatever other ghoul or goblin that’s hanging around in that backfield. Luckily for Alex Collins, Pete Carroll seems terrified by the prospect of Geno throwing the ball so LET IT EAT!
The Patriots will be playing the Chargers in LA and in classic Belichick fashion, he’s got practically the entire roster listed as questionable. This f-ing guy. Keep an eye on Kendrick Bourne and Jonnu Smith’s status going into Sunday if you’re planning on playing them.
The Chargers have RB Austin Ekeler listed as questionable with Brandon Staley hopeful that he’ll play. That’s not super promising when a coach is talking like that but I’d think that Ekeler can play through some hip soreness in this matchup against the Patriots. If he’s out, look for Justin Jackson, Joshua Kelley, and maybe… is it Jake Funk season?!!
The Buccaneers have officially ruled out Antonio Brown in Tom Brady‘s spoil of riches in Tampa Bay. Brown has been dealing with a lingering ankle sprain that’s been holding him out but thankfully it’s looking like Rob Gronkowski is finally on track to play, maybe not this week but likely next with him practicing again. Thank the lord, we might finally be on track for Gronk to be catching way too many touchdowns and dominating.
For the Washington Football Team, Antonio Gibson is expected to play through his shin injury that’s been limiting him for a few weeks now. He’ll likely be fine but he’s unlikely to really excel again opening the door to J.D. McKissic to have some more opportunities, though he hasn’t done much with them lately. The WFT receiving corps continues to suffer with Curtis Samuel and Dyami Brown but Ricky Seals-Jones has been decent and is worth playing until Logan Thomas returns.
The Broncos are hoping to elevate Jerry Jeudy off the injured reserve going into Sunday though he was still not practicing as of Friday. You gotta be monitoring his status if you’re a Jeudy owner as he’s a must play against this porous Washington secondary even with Teddy Bridgewater tossing.
The biggest injury news of the week for Sunday Night Football in Minnesota, the Dallas Cowboys are likely without their QB Dak Prescott. Get ready for some hot, hardcore Copper Rush action against a sturdy Minnesota defense. This, in short, sucks for the Cowboys. I’m downgrading everyone except for Ezekiel Elliott and hoping that CeeDee Lamb and Amari Cooper can do something with a gigantic downgrade at QB. Sorry Copper but you’re no Mike White,
Other Notable Injuries:
The Dolphins are going to have their CB Xavien Howard and CB Byron Jones back in their matchup against the Bills but even with the talent of these guys, the team around them seems so slipshod and ill-prepared that besides the occasional turnover they’re just not going to change the inevitable outcome here. And it’s bad for the Dolphins.
The Browns will be without CB Denzel Ward and have DE Jadeveon Clowney and DT Malik Johnson questionable, the good news is they’re up against the worst offense in the league in the Steelers. The injuries to the front four could open up some play for Najee Harris but Ben is going to struggle like he has been. Unfortunately for the Browns, the Steelers are going to bang their roughed up offensive line even with OL Jedrick Wills back, looking to tear Baker’s shoulder clean off his body. I’m thinking this is going to be a low-scoring brawl of a game.
For the Panthers, they could be without CB CJ Henderson and LB Shaq Thompson weakening their banged-up defense against a Falcons team that found a bit of an offensive roll against the Dolphins in London. Kyle Pitts time again?!?
You can find me on Twitter getting a jolt from my electrodes at @skorishism. Be sure to let me know what you think and who you’ll be playing Sunday in the comments below. Cheers.