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Fantasy Football Injury Reports (Tuesday Updates): Cooper Kupp, Jonathan Taylor, Kenny Pickett, Geno Smith, Tee Higgins, more

Jonathan Taylor - Fantasy Football Rankings, NFL Injury News, DFS Lineup Picks

A month of football is in the books, meaning there are several key players who can return from the PUP list or Injured Reserve in Week 5. Two fantasy superstars could make their season debuts in Week 5, so this is an extra crucial edition of our injury updates. Our fantasy football injury reports as of Tuesday, October 3 will give you the latest news on the top banged-up players heading into Week 5 including Cooper Kupp, Jonathan Taylor, Kenny Pickett, Geno Smith, Tee Higgins, and more.

Being up-to-date on NFL injury news can give you an edge over your league mates in fantasy football. It's early in the week, but there's never a wrong time to check in on key players on your fantasy rosters.

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.

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Cooper Kupp Injury Update

Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay said that wide receiver Cooper Kupp (hamstring) will return to practice this week as the team activates his 21-day window to return from Injured Reserve. The Rams are still holding out hope that Kupp can make his 2023 debut in Week 5 against the Philadelphia Eagles, but we won't have a better idea of whether that is realistic or not until the 30-year-old resumes practicing.

Kupp was a first-round pick in most fantasy drafts, so those that took him will surely hope he'll be back next week and pick up where he left off as quarterback Matthew Stafford's top target. How Kupp's return will affect the roles of rookie Puka Nacua and Tutu Atwell is yet to be seen, but they will inevitably have lower fantasy ceilings if Kupp is healthy.

 

Jonathan Taylor Injury Update

Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor (ankle) will practice for the first time this year on Wednesday, and there's a chance he could make his 2023 debut this Sunday in Week 5 against the Tennessee Titans. Taylor last played in an NFL game last Dec. 17 before a lingering right-ankle injury forced him to Injured Reserve. He had surgery on Jan. 26, which kept him from offseason work and training camp while also dealing with an ugly contract impasse that led to a trade demand.

The Colts have opened Taylor's 21-day window to return from the Physically Unable to Perform list. The 24-year-old is reportedly stoked to get back to playing, but fantasy managers that have had him stashed this whole time should temper expectations if he's officially active this Sunday.

 

Kenny Pickett Injury Update

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett (knee) suffered a bone bruise in his knee in the Week 4 loss to the Houston Texans that could lead to only a short-term absence. The door is open for Pickett, who is also dealing with a muscle strain, to play in Week 5 against the division-rival Baltimore Ravens, but the Steelers may play it safe with their bye coming in Week 6. We'll have a better idea of whether Pickett has a shot at playing this weekend once the team resumes practicing this Wednesday.

For now, though, it seems very questionable that Pickett will be out there until Week 7. If the 25-year-old is held out this Sunday against Baltimore, backup Mitch Trubisky would make his first start of the year under center in a tough matchup.

 

Geno Smith Injury Update

Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said that quarterback Geno Smith (knee) twisted his knee in the 24-3 blowout win over the New York Giants on Monday night. Carroll said that Smith will probably be sore on Tuesday, but his injury isn't considered serious.

Smith had to leave the game and was noticeably upset at the Giants defender who tackled him awkwardly out of bounds in the second quarter. But he returned for the start of the second half and finished the contest going 13-for-20 for 110 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions in the easy win.

The 32-year-old was sacked twice for a loss of 13 yards. Smith wasn't really asked to do much in this one and produced a disappointing line for his fantasy managers. He'll have ample time to rest his knee with the bye coming in Week 5 before a Week 6 tilt on the road in Cincinnati against the Bengals.

 

Kyren Williams Injury Update

Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay said running back Kyren Williams (hip) suffered a hip contusion in the Week 4 overtime win over the Indianapolis Colts. Williams was able to finish the game, though, and it ended up being his best game of the year. The 23-year-old finished with 127 total yards and two rushing touchdowns on the day on his 28 touches.

Fantasy managers shouldn't be surprised if Williams is limited in some practices this week, but he should be able to play in Week 5 this Sunday in a showdown against the undefeated Philadelphia Eagles. With Cam Akers out of the picture, Williams is LA's unquestioned lead back for the foreseeable future, giving him weekly RB2 value. (TheRams.com)

 

Tee Higgins Injury Update

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Tee Higgins (ribs) exited the Week 4 game against the Tennessee Titans with a rib injury. He suffered a rib fracture and early reports suggested he could be out for a few weeks. However, the 24-year-old said he does not think his injury will keep him out for an extended period of time, and he could potentially be back this week. According to Paul Dehner Jr. of The Athletic, it all depends on Higgins' soreness and pain tolerance.

All that said, the Bengals will likely want to be careful with the young wideout, so it won't be surprising if he misses the Week 5 game against the Arizona Cardinals.

 

Javonte Williams Injury Update

Denver Broncos running back Javonte Williams (hip) sustained a hip-flexor injury during Week 4's 31-28 comeback win over the Chicago Bears, and he isn't expected to miss much time, if any, per ESPN's Adam Schefter. Williams took only 17% of Denver's offensive snaps before exiting on Sunday, handling two carries for no gain and three catches for nine yards. Undrafted rookie Jaleel McLaughlin burst onto the scene for 104 total yards and a touchdown on Sunday. Presumed No. 2 back Samaje Perine plodded his way to 12 yards on six carries with two receptions for 23 yards.

It's great to hear Williams isn't dealing with anything serious as he continues working his way back from a 2022 torn ACL with just 138 yards on 38 carries and 11 catches for 51 yards so far this year. It sounds as if the 23-year-old is on the right side of questionable ahead of practice for Week 5 versus the New York Jets.

 

Pat Freiermuth Injury Update

Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Pat Freiermuth (hamstring) is expected to miss two to three weeks, per Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Freiermuth suffered a hamstring injury during Week 4's loss to the Houston Texans, and this development coincides with a previous report that he isn't dealing with just a tweak. The 24-year-old is currently labeled as questionable for Week 5 against the Baltimore Ravens, but he should be deemed closer to the doubtful side of that tag based on this timetable.

Pittsburgh has a Week 6 bye, so perhaps fantasy managers can circle Week 7 (Oct. 22) as a reasonable Freiermuth return date. Third-round rookie Darnell Washington, a freak athlete out of Georgia, could be in for an augmented role if Freiermuth indeed misses time, but he wouldn't be a recommended streamer against a Ravens defense allowing the third-fewest fantasy points per game to tight ends in 2023. (ESPN.com)

 

Tyler Higbee Injury Update

Los Angeles Rams tight end Tyler Higbee (thumb) "got his thumb banged up a little bit" in the Week 4 overtime win over the Indianapolis Colts, according to head coach Sean McVay. Higbee was questionable going into Sunday's win over the Colts with an Achilles injury, but he ended up suiting up and caught five of a season-high 11 targets for 64 yards.

The 30-year-old has yet to find the end zone in the first four games, but he's been respectable as a low-end TE1 for fantasy managers with 16 receptions on 26 targets for 196 yards as the TE9 in half-PPR scoring. His thumb injury shouldn't cause him to miss the Week 5 meeting with the Philadelphia Eagles this Sunday. However, the impending return of receiver Cooper Kupp (hamstring) is inevitably going to take valuable targets away from Higbee. (TheRams.com)

 

Elijah Mitchell Injury Update

San Francisco 49ers running back Elijah Mitchell (knee) is considered day-to-day before practice begins for Week 5 versus the Dallas Cowboys, per Nick Wagoner of ESPN.com. Mitchell missed Sunday's easy win against the Arizona Cardinals with a right knee injury after taking on his largest workload of the year (14 touches) in Week 3. The 25-year-old suffered the setback during last Thursday's practice in the same knee he sustained an MCL sprain in last year, costing him nine games. However, a day-to-day designation certainly leaves the door open for him to return soon.

Mitchell saw Jordan Mason flip four touches into 23 yards as the change-of-pace back in his stead while Christian McCaffrey broke Sunday's slate for 177 scrimmage yards and four touchdowns. Mitchell hasn't done much with 16 carries this year, but he remains one of fantasy's highest-upside handcuffs behind the oft-injured McCaffrey. (ESPN.com)



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