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Fantasy Football Injury Reports For Conference Championships (Thursday Updates): Patrick Mahomes, A.J. Brown, Deebo Samuel, Jimmy Garoppolo, Mecole Hardman

AJ Brown - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

While the NFL's regular season is now in the books, many fantasy football diehards are set to participate in playoff fantasy leagues and NFL DFS contests. As we head deeper into the NFL playoffs and Conference Championship weekend, there is notable injury news and constantly changing situations. These are the latest player injury updates as of Thursday, January 16.

Fantasy football stalwarts such as Patrick MahomesMecole Hardman, A.J. Brown, and more have been dealing with injuries ahead of their Conference Championship games. We have plenty of must-starts on this week's injury list, so fantasy managers should be ready to pivot should things go south.

To keep close tabs on all of the news across the NFL, make sure to favorite or bookmark the fantasy football player news page, or download the free RotoBaller fantasy football mobile app with push notification alerts on all the latest news. Let's look at the updates for some fantasy players and see whether they may play for the Conference Championship Round.

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Patrick Mahomes Injury Update

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (ankle) put in a full practice on Wednesday and was seen jogging on the field without a limp after suffering a right high-ankle sprain in the Divisional Round win over the Jacksonville Jaguars last Saturday.

"It's feeling good so far," Mahomes said. ""I felt better than I thought I was going to be after the game. Moving on it during the game definitely hurt. The next morning it felt a little bit better, and I've continued to get better throughout the week." The Chiefs will try to find the appropriate balance in their offensive game plan this week between protecting Mahomes and allowing the unit to be aggressive against the Cincinnati Bengals.

His mobility will almost certainly be limited, making him more risky in playoff DFS leagues, but he did throw four touchdowns the week after suffering a left high-ankle sprain back in 2019.

 

Mecole Hardman Injury Update

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Mecole Hardman (abdomen) was a limited participant in Wednesday's practice, and head coach Andy Reid said Hardman "feels better than he did the last couple of weeks."

If Hardman is able to return for the first time since getting hurt in Week 9, it will be the first time the Chiefs have had both Hardman and Kadarius Toney on the field together since early November. Hardman would give quarterback Patrick Mahomes (ankle) yet another weapon to rely on while likely being limited with what he can do mobility-wise as he fights through a high-ankle sprain.

The 24-year-old wideout caught touchdowns in three straight games before getting hurt, but fantasy managers would be wise to avoid him after such a long layoff if he's active this weekend in the AFC Championship tilt against the Cincinnati Bengals.

 

Clyde Edwards-Helaire Injury Update

Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said "there's a chance" running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire (ankle) could come off Injured Reserve ahead of Sunday's game against the Bengals. The 23-year-old has been sidelined since Week 11 due to a high-ankle sprain.

He rushed for 302 yards and three touchdowns while catching 17 passes for 151 yards and three scores across 10 games in 2022. The former first-round pick would provide running back depth behind Jerick McKinnon and rookie Isiah Pacheco. Edwards-Helaire is the Chiefs RB3 and is off the fantasy radar for this weekend's main DFS slate if he's active.

 

Jimmy Garoppolo Injury Update

San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said that quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo had X-rays on Wednesday and isn't expected to be active this weekend for the NFC Championship game on Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles. It's not really a surprise given the fact that it has only been eight weeks since he broke his foot in Week 13.

Even if Jimmy G was ready, he'd likely be backing up impressive rookie Brock Purdy, who hasn't lost a game since taking over for the injured Garoppolo. Veteran Josh Johnson will serve as Purdy's backup again this weekend. If the Niners advance to the Super Bowl, Garoppolo could be ready by then, but he'd likely be serving as Purdy's backup.

 

Deebo Samuel Injury Update

San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel (ankle) was officially listed as a limited participant in the team's practice on Wednesday after it was initially reported that he would not partake. Samuel was sidelined from Week 15 through Week 17 with ankle and knee sprains and is currently just dealing with ankle soreness.

It is a great sign that the 27-year-old was able to get in a limited session early this week, and his availability should not be in doubt for Sunday's NFC Championship matchup with the Philadelphia Eagles.

 

Christian McCaffrey and Elijah Mitchell Injury Updates

San Francisco 49ers running backs Christian McCaffrey (calf) and Elijah Mitchell (groin) both missed practice on Wednesday. Both McCaffrey and Mitchell picked up minor injuries in the Divisional Round win over the Dallas Cowboys last Sunday, but they are considered day-to-day and are expected to play in this Sunday's NFC Championship versus the Philadelphia Eagles.

The Niners are likely just giving both backs some extra rest this week. CMC was out-carried by Mitchell last weekend and only had 35 rushing yards, but he managed to score a touchdown and hauled in six passes. Assuming he doesn't have any setbacks later this week, McCaffrey should be San Fran's lead back against a tough Eagles defensive front.

 

A.J. Brown Injury Update

Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver A.J. Brown (hip) was removed from the team's injury report on Wednesday after tweaking his left hip in the blowout win over the division-rival New York Giants in the Divisional Round.

The Eagles didn't need Brown much in their 38-7 victory, and he disappointed his fantasy managers with only three receptions and 22 receiving yards. He should be full-speed ahead for the NFC Championship game against the San Francisco 49ers this Sunday.

While the Niners D is one of the best in the league, they were very generous to opposing wideouts in fantasy in 2022, and Brown finished the regular season as the WR5 in half-point PPR scoring. A big bounce-back game could be in the cards this weekend.

 

Jonah Williams and Alex Cappa Injury Updates

Cincinnati Bengals offensive lineman Jonah Williams (knee) and Alex Cappa (ankle) did not take part in the portion of practice open to the media on Wednesday. Williams is dealing with a dislocated kneecap and didn't play in the Divisional Round win over the Buffalo Bills.

Meanwhile, Cappa suffered an ankle injury in the regular season finale and has yet to suit up in the postseason. Neither player is trending in the right direction for the AFC Championship this Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs, but they could still get back on the practice field on Thursday or Friday.

Cincy's offensive line stepped up in a big way to protect quarterback Joe Burrow against the Bills last weekend, and they might have to do so again if both Williams and Cappa cannot play. Jackson Carman started at left tackle last week, while Max Scharping filled in at right guard.



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