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Inside the Tent - Week 11 NFL Injury Insight


At RotoBaller, we can't stress enough the importance of keeping up with injuries and playing your best lineup week after week. Players are going to get injured, that's an unavoidable fact. What's avoidable though is making the wrong roster decisions based on the injuries surrounding your fantasy squad. If you want to dominate your leagues and win some dough in daily contests, you have to be proactive with injury research.

That's where I come in to serve you, the readers! I'm Aaron Burger, a Doctor of Physical Therapy in Pittsburgh, PA. About two years ago, I decided to combine my love, fantasy football, with what I've been learning for years now, injuries and the human body. Each week, I'll be checking in on fantasy's biggest injuries to keep you informed.

Be sure you also have RotoBaller bookmarked and follow us on social media to catch all the latest NFL news and updates.

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Inside the Tent Updates

Jacoby Brissett, QB - Indianapolis Colts

  • Brissett is coming back from an MCL sprain sustained against the Steelers in Week 9. He was not able to play in Week 10 and Brian Hoyer got the start. Brissett was able to practice in full all week and will therefore play in Week 11 against the Jaguars. Brissett was turning in a nice 2019 season before this MCL sprain so the Colts skill players will be happy to have him back.

James Conner, RB - Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Conner is dealing with an AC, or acromioclavicular, joint sprain. This is the joint where the clavicle, or collarbone, meets the shoulder blade via a bony protrusion known as the acromion. There are 3 types of sprains: Grade I, Grade II, and Grade III. Considering he did not have surgery, which would be required for Grade III, he is likely dealing with a Grade II sprain. Conner re-aggravated his AC joint sprain in Week 11 against the Browns on Thursday night. As we often talk about, soft tissue injuries can easily be re-aggravated if they are not given the full time to heal.

T.Y. Hilton, WR - Indianapolis Colts

  • Hilton strained his calf in practice leading up the the Colts' Week 9 matchup against the Steelers. When calves are strained, they are simply stretched past their anatomical limits. Hilton's strain is likely a Grade II strain which is more severe than a Grade I but not a complete rupture (Grade III). Hilton has been ruled out for Week 10 which is a smart move considering the timeline for returning from calf strains (2-3 weeks). Hilton was not able to practice all week and will likely not play in Week 11.

Adam Thielen, WR - Minnesota Vikings

  • Thielen unfortunately re-aggravated the hamstring strain that plagued him in Week 7. He once again was not able to play in Week 10 and has not practiced all week leading up to Week 11. Thielen will once again not be on the field when the Vikings take on the Denver Broncos this weekend.

Week 11 Injury Updates

Matthew Stafford, QB - Detroit Lions

  • Injury: Stafford is dealing with the transverse process fracture in his low back or lumbar region. The transverse process is a piece of the vertebrae or backbone and serves as a muscular attachment point. If you remember, Stafford also dealt with this at the end of the 2018 season.
  • News: Stafford was not able to practice at all this week and will likely not play in Week 11.
  • Outlook: With Stafford out, Jeff Driskel Will be under center for the Lions against the Cowboys. Kenny Golladay was able to save his Week 10 performance with a touchdown but expectations should definitely be tempered for the Lions' skill players.

Devonta Freeman, RB - Atlanta Falcons

  • Injury: Freeman sustained a mid-foot sprain in the Falcons' Week 10 victory against the Saints. There are numerous ligaments throughout the foot that help to add stability and maintain the arch of the midfoot. As always, there are three different grades for ligament sprains: Grade I, Grade II, and Grade III. In Freeman's case, we're likely looking at a Grade I or mild Grade II sprain.
  • News: Ian Rapoport reported that Freeman will miss "about two weeks" which supports the notion of a Grade I sprain. He did not practice this week.
  • Outlook: With Ito Smith already on IR, Brian Hill will take over RB duties for the Falcons against the Carolina Panthers.

Ty Johnson, RB - Detroit Lions

  • Injury: Johnson sustained a concussion in the Lions' Week 10 loss against Chicago. A concussion obviously results from trauma to the head and the symptoms related to concussions including nausea, sensitivity to light, headaches, dizziness, and mood changes occur as a result of the chemical changes within the brain from the impact.
  • News: Johnson was not able to practice on Wednesday, turned in a limited practice on Thursday, and was a full participant on Friday. He is questionable for Week 11 so make sure you check the injury report 90 minutes before kickoff.
  • Outlook: If Johnson is not able to suit up, look for J.D. McKissic to continue passing down snaps and Paul Perkins to have an increased role in the running game.

Tyler Lockett, WR - Seattle Seahawks

  • Injury: Lockett sustained a contusion to the outside of his lower leg that was severe enough to send him to the hospital after the Seahawks defeated the San Francisco 49ers on Monday night. Pete Carroll told reporters that Lockett was dealing with bruising and swelling. Reports came out that that he was actually dealing with compartment syndrome. Compartment syndrome can occur when there is bruising and swelling under the skin which compresses on blood vessels and nerves. When severe, this requires surgery to relieve pressure under the skin by draining fluid and blood.
  • News: Thankfully, Lockett did not require surgery and was released from the hospital Tuesday. He is week to week at this time.
  • Outlook: The Seahawks have a bye in Week 11 and there certainly a possibility Lockett will be good to go for Week 12. He was been hyper-efficient this season and is a guy that's just flat out good at football.

Emmanuel Sanders, WR - San Francisco 49ers

  • Injury: The veteran from SMU is dealing with an injury to his rib cartilage. He took a hit to the right side of his trunk and was seen grabbing for his side on the next play. The cartilage that Sanders injured attaches the rib to the sternum, or breast bone. There is no surgery to help with the recovery as it's simply a pain management issue. Julian Edelman dealt with this earlier in the season and was able to play through it.
  • News: Although he was not able to practice this week, Sanders told reporters that he is planning on playing in Week 11.
  • Outlook: Fantasy players should be cautious with Sanders this weekend as this could easily be re-aggravated with any hit to his right side. Either way, Deebo Samuel could have a breakout week with George Kittle also sidelined with a bone bruise.

Austin Hooper, TE - Atlanta Falcons

  • Injury: Hooper sustained a left MCL sprain in Week 10 against the Saints. The MCL, or medial collateral ligament, is a ligament on the inside of the knee that helps to stabilize the joint and prevent inward collapse. As always, there are three different grades for ligament sprains: Grade I, Grade II, and Grade III.
  • News: According to Ian Rapoport, Hooper is slated to miss about a month with this sprain which leads me to believe it's a significant Grade I or mild Grade II sprain.
  • Outlook: With Hooper sidelined, look for more targets to be funneled to Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley. Additionally, the Carolina Panthers secondary is rather beat up this weekend so the Falcons could target that as they try to salvage their season.

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