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Inside the Tent - Week 8 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 a year 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

Patrick Mahomes, QB - Kansas City Chiefs

  • There was some hope mid-week that Mahomes could actually suit up in Week 8 but unfortunately for the Chiefs and the fantasy community, he has been ruled OUT for Week 8. He was able to practice in a limited fashion all week though so a Week 9 return is certainly not out of the question.

Alvin Kamara, RB - New Orleans Saints

  • Kamara is coming back from a knee sprain as well as a low-grade high ankle sprain. He was not able to play in Week 7 and Latavius Murray rewarded anyone that started him. Now heading into Week 8, Kamara was able to turn in two limited practices on Thursday and Friday so it's looking like he will play in Week 9. His snap count will most likely be limited but he will be out there nonetheless. UPDATE: Kamara has officially been ruled out for this week.

David Johnson, RB - Arizona Cardinals

  • Johnson was the thorn in the fantasy community's side in Week 7 when he "started," proceeded to get one attempt for two yards, and then handed the baton to Chase Edmunds who certainly did not disappoint. Johnson is once again a game-time decision with an ankle sprain. Soft tissue injuries are always vulnerable to re-injury so it's most likely better if he sits this week to fully recover. Johnson was not able to practice all week. UPDATE: Johnson has officially been ruled out for this week.

Davante Adams, WR - Green Bay Packers

  • Adams is trying to get back on the field after a diagnosis of turf toe sustained in Week 4. This injury is difficult to recover from considering how the underside of the big toe is stretched every time an athlete takes a step, let alone sprints. Adams did not practice all week although he was seen lightly jogging on the side and running routes about half speed. He is listed as doubtful and likely won't see the field until Week 9 at the earliest.

Christian Kirk, WR - Arizona Cardinals

  • Kirk is recovering from an ankle sprain sustained in Week 4. He missed Weeks 5, 6, and 7 and is once again a game-time decision for Week 8. From the video, he is lucky he did not suffer a more serious injury so that's one positive to take away from this instance. As always, soft tissue injures (strains, sprains, and contusions) are vulnerable to re-injury so that's something to take into consideration if he does indeed lace them up this weekend.

 

Week 8 Injury Updates

Matt Ryan, QB - Atlanta Falcons

  • Injury: Ryan sustained a right high ankle sprain in Week 7 when his ankle got twisted while being tackled. High ankle sprains differ from low ankle sprains in the structures involved. In a high ankle sprain, the syndesmosis, or connection, between the two lower leg bones is stretched and these bones are now able to move more freely which is certainly not a good thing.
  • News: He was able to practice on Friday and according to Ian Rapoport, there is a realistic chance Ryan will play in Week 8. He has been a mainstay in Atlanta for years so he is an exception to the "two limited practices in a row" rule of thumb.
  • Outlook: Ultimately, I believe Ryan plays but I'm not sure how effective he will be. High ankle sprains are very painful and can easily be re-aggravated. If Ryan isn't able to play, Matt Schaub will assume QB duties and everyone on the Atlanta offense gets a downgrade. UPDATE: Ryan has officially been ruled out for this week.

Kerryon Johnson, RB - Detroit Lions

  • Injury: Johnson was removed from the Lions' Week 7 game and was seen on the sidelines with a compression sleeve on his right knee. He was riding the stationary bike which was a good sign but ultimately it was reported he would undergo surgery on his right knee. The exact play where he was injured is unknown so one could only speculate what happened or what surgery he underwent.
  • News: He was placed on the IR on October 22nd. This means the earliest he could come back is Week 16, right in the middle of the fantasy playoffs.
  • Outlook: Ty Johnson and J.D. McKissic were hot commodities on this week's waiver wire although the exact workload split is unknown at this time. The Lions' gameplan often includes pounding the rock and stopping the run but Matt Stafford will be asked to do a little more with Johnson sidelined.

Adam Thielen, WR - Minnesota Vikings

  • Injury: Thielen sustained a hamstring strain in Week 7. The hamstring muscle group is on the backside of the thigh and helps the hip to extend, knee to flex, and assists in acceleration/deceleration. When the hamstrings are strained, they are simply stretched past their anatomical limits. Thielen's strain is likely a Grade I strain which is the least severe.
  • News: There was actually hope that Thielen could play this Thursday when the Vikings faced the Redskins which is why I hypothesize it's only a Grade I strain. The MRI revealed no significant damage which would not be the case for a Grade II or III strain.
  • Outlook: Thielen obviously did not suit up for Week 8's first game on Thursday night but there's certainly a possibility he will be out there in Week 9 against the Chiefs in a game Patrick Mahomes may return for as well.

Will Fuller, WR - Houston Texans

  • Injury: Will Fuller also sustained a right hamstring strain in Week 7 against the Colts. The hamstring muscle group is on the backside of the thigh and helps the hip to extend, knee to flex, and assists in acceleration/deceleration. When the hamstrings are strained, they are simply stretched past their anatomical limits.
  • News: Ian Rapoport reports that the strain is "significant" which means Fuller likely sustained a Grade II strain. Grade II strains are classified by partial tearing along the tendon or muscle belly itself. Rapoport also reported that Fuller will be out "several weeks" which adds to the Grade II strain theory. He has been ruled OUT for Week 8.
  • Outlook: Keke Coutee and Kenny Stills should see an increased target share with Fuller once again sidelined. The Texans' offense used to be debilitated when Fuller was injured but Stills is a great deep threat and Coutee can work underneath while DeAndre Hopkins gets his normal workload.

Delanie Walker, TE - Tennessee Titans

  • Injury: Delanie Walker is dealing with an ankle sprain that was re-aggravated in Week 7 against the Chargers. We talk about the risk of re-injury with soft tissue injuries because it can happen at any time. Ankle sprains often occur when the ankle is turned inward, resulting in a lateral ankle sprain. If the ankle is turned outward, a medial ankle sprain is more likely.
  • News: Walker has been ruled OUT for Week 8 against the Buccaneers.
  • Outlook: With Walker out, look for Jonnu Smith to step right in and assume the same duty he had last year when Walker was sidelined. Smith has some nice big play ability but Ryan Tannehill's target share has yet to be determined.

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