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Week 16 Fantasy Football Injury Report

Week 16 Fantasy Football Injury Report

Three more full weeks in the NFL. I repeat, three more jam packed Sundays in the NFL. This is not a drill. Congrats to those who have made it to the next week in their fantasy football playoffs. Also, welcome to those who have been newly converted to DFS players and keeping the degeneracy alive. This week is again filled with big name injuries and way too many COVID cases. Welcome to the Week 16 fantasy football injury report.

Week 16 1PM Inactives:

Austin Ekler (RB) Los Angeles Chargers

Mike Williams (WR) Los Angeles Chargers

Donald Parham Jr. (TE) Los Angeles Chargers

Jared Goff (QB) Detroit Lions

D’Andre Swift (RB) Detroit Lions

Tajae Sharpe (WR) Atlanta Falcons

Lamar Jackson (QB) Baltimore Ravens

Tyler Huntley (QB) Baltimore Ravens

Devin Duvernay (WR) Baltimore Ravens

Cole Beasley (WR) Buffalo Bills

Gabriel Davis (WR) Buffalo Bills

David Johnson (RB) Houston Texans

Brandin Cooks (WR) Houston Texans

Ka’imi Fairbairn (K) Houston Texans

Laviska Shenault Jr. (WR) Jacksonville Jaguars

Dalvin Cook (RB) Minnesota Vikings

Rhamondre Stevenson (RB) New England Patriots

Nelson Agholor (WR) New England Patriots

Jamison Crowder (WR) New York Jets

Mike Evans (WR) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Chris Godwin (WR) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Leonard Fournette (RB) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Week 16 Late Inactives:

Travis Kelce (TE) Kansas City Chiefs

Andy Dalton (QB) Chicago Bears

Teddy Bridgewater (QB) Denver Broncos

Darren Waller (TE) Las Vegas Raiders

Pat Freiermuth (TE) Pittsburgh Steelers

12/25/21 Update

Darren Waller (TE) Las Vegas Raiders

IT Band Syndrome, Initial Injury: 11/25/21

The Las Vegas Raiders have been an absolute mess these past few weeks. Between the distractions, poor play, and their best offensive player on the Week 15 injury report, it has been tough to watch. The Raiders TE Darren Waller has missed the past two games with what is being called an IT band strain or syndrome. An IT band refers to connective tissue that connects muscles of your outer hip to your outer knee. The IT band can become inflamed, which causes pain with repetitive motions such as running. Unfortunately, this injury can take four to eight weeks to fully heal based on severity. Additionally, Waller has been unable to practice in any capacity as of Friday (12/24). After not being able to practice this week, Waller is officially doubtful for Week 16 and in danger of missing his fourth straight game

Waller is dealing with a hip injury and is likely to miss his fourth straight game. – SIT/MONITOR

Lamar Jackson (QB) Baltimore Ravens

Ankle Injury, Initial Injury: 12/12/21

Injuries may be finally catching up to the Baltimore Ravens this year. Heading into Week 16, their star QB Lamar Jackson is on the injury report. Last week, he injured his ankle early in the game and was unable to return. Not being able to play through the injury is a worrisome sign but reports state that the injury is not believed to be a high ankle sprain. This is positive news for the Ravens and fantasy managers as high ankle sprains cause more damage and take longer to rehab.

A low ankle sprain refers to the ankle sprain we commonly think of. It is caused by the foot rolling inwards and damaging the ligaments on the outside part of the ankle. This is a very common injury that can take between one to three weeks to heal in minor cases. Jackson’s mobility will likely be hindered to a degree but it would be difficult not to start him if he is able to play.

Jackson has still not returned to the field as of Friday (12/24), after missing last week’s game. There have not been many details given regarding the severity of the injury by the team. At this point the expectation is Jackson will not be active this week and he has been officially ruled out this week. Backup QB Tyler Huntley tested positive for COVID-19, leaving QB Josh Johnson as the only healthy Ravens QB.

Lamar is dealing with a low ankle sprain and his status is uncertain for Sunday. – MONITOR/SIT

Adam Thielen (WR) Minnesota Vikings

High Ankle Sprain, Initial Injury: 12/5/21

The Minnesota Vikings are coming off their worst loss of the season to the previously winless Detroit Lions. Unfortunately for their fan base, the Week 14 injury report will not lift their spirits. Vikings star WR Adam Thielen injured his ankle in the first quarter last week and was unable to return. He is officially diagnosed with a high ankle sprain and is currently not expected to play this week. Further testing needs to be done to determine the amount of damage but this can easily be a multiple weeks absence.

High ankle sprains are difficult injuries to manage and more severe than the common low ankle sprain. These injuries refer to damage to the ligaments above the ankle which hold the two lower leg bones together. These ligaments require more force to be injured than the outside ligaments in a low ankle sprain, meaning more damage is caused. This injury creates a lack of ankle stability that causes pain and hinders the player’s ability to run and make cuts in their route. Typically, even mild high ankle sprains require four to six weeks for a full recovery. After practicing in a limited fashion all week, Thielen is officially listed as questionable and is expected to play this week. Barring any setbacks in pregame warmups, the WR will likely give it a go to help his team but will be limited some.

Thielen is expected to be out this week, and likely more, with a high ankle sprain. – SIT

12/24/21 Update

Mike Evans (WR) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Hamstring Injury, Initial Injury: 12/19/21

Another Tampa Bay offensive playmaker finds himself on the Week 16 injury report. The Buccaneers WR Mike Evans injured his hamstring during last week’s game and was unable to return. He is dealing with a hamstring strain but the expectation is that the injury is not severe. He is officially out for this week, which is the expected and smart decision. Hamstring strains are tough injuries to manage due to their high reinjury rate. With Tampa Bay squarely in the playoffs at this point, it makes sense for them to exercise caution when it comes to playing Evans. Lastly, he may get some work over these next two weeks but I would expect him to be limited until the postseason begins.

Evans is officially out with a hamstring strain this week. – SIT

Pat Freiermuth (TE) Pittsburgh Steelers

Concussion, Initial Injury: 12/19/21

Pittsburgh’s rookie TE is quickly becoming a vital part of their offense. Unfortunately for the Steelers, he will not be available for a pivotal Week 16 matchup against Kansas City. TE Pat Freiermuth suffered a concussion last week after taking a hard hit to the head. Unable to practice on Friday (12/24), he is still in the NFL’s concussion protocol. Therefore, he is officially ruled out for this week. Concussions affect all individuals differently but it is likely Freiermuth should be able to return by next week. Typically, NFL players are able to clear the concussion protocol within a week.

Freiermuth is still in the concussion protocol and out for this week. – SIT

D’Andre Swift (RB) Detroit Lions

AC Sprain, Initial Injury: 11/25/21

The Lions have not had much to be happy about this year as per usual. Unfortunately, one of the few players they have been happy about finds himself on the Week 16 injury report. RB D’Andre Swift has been having a career year to start but injured his shoulder last week. He was taken down hard on his shoulder and is currently dealing with an AC joint sprain. The AC joint connects your shoulder to your clavicle and the ligament connecting the two is commonly injured. There are numerous levels of the injury based on the amount of damage caused. Based on reports, this injury is not expected to be season-ending, but it will have Swift out at least this week and possibly more.

After missing the past two games, Swift has finally made his return to the practice field. He logged limited participation on Wednesday (12/22), and is trending in the right direction to play this week. If the Lions’ RB is able to continue practicing, he will likely be able to assume his lead role at RB again. It is worth mentioning the backfield is a bit crowded with RB2 Jamaal Williams back from COVID and newcomer Craig Reynolds.

Swift is practicing and trending upwards for this week. – MONITOR/START

Daniel Jones (QB) New York Giants

Neck Strain, Initial Injury:  11/28/21

Coming off a big divisional win in Week 12, Giants fans of course are immediately hit with negative news. It is being reported that QB Daniel Jones injured his neck on the second play of the game. Additionally, initially, there were some reports that he could miss an extended period of time due to the injury. Right away this didn’t sound right as Jones was able to play the entire rest of the game, including multiple designed QB runs. Jones has now practiced both Wednesday and Thursday at least in a limited fashion and the expectation is much more optimistic. New York’s new offensive coordinator even went as far as to say he expects Jones to start at QB this week. The situation will need to be monitored further but it seems more positive news is being received throughout the week.

After being sidelined the last three weeks due to his injury, it appears that the Giants QB’s season is over. Jones has still not been cleared for contact yet with his neck injury after being further evaluated by team doctors. Therefore, the team has decided to shut him down for the season. He is likely dealing with a cervical disc issue that will require extensive rehab or surgery to fully heal. Jones is expected to make a full recovery by next season. Back up QB Mike Glennon will likely be starting this week with newly acquired QB Jake Fromm next in line.

Jones is out for the season with his neck injury. – DROP

Elijah Mitchell (RB) San Francisco 49ers

Knee Injury, Initial Injury: 12/5/21

San Francisco’s lead RB will again be on the injury report for Week 16. Elijah Mitchell has been ruled out for Thursday’s game and will miss his third straight week with a knee injury. Unfortunately, the nature of the injury is undisclosed at this time but he did receive an MRI recently. The results reportedly came back “clean” but showed some “irritation”. This provides some hope that Mitchell may be able to return soon but it may after fantasy playoffs have ended.

Mitchell is out for his third straight game due to a knee injury. – SIT

Zane Gonzalez (K) Carolina Panthers

Quad Injury, Initial Injury: 12/19/21

After a promising start, the Panthers’ season has been derailed. This addition to the Week 16 injury report is a good representation of the mess in Carolina. Panthers K Zane Gonzalez was ruled out in pregame warmups before last week’s game. He is dealing with a quadriceps, muscle on the front part of your upper leg, strain, and his season is over. He is being placed on the injured reserve list and unavailable to kick for the team. The Panthers have claimed kicker Lirim Harjullahu in a corresponding move.

Gonzalez is done for the season with a quadriceps strain. – DROP

Teddy Bridgewater (QB) Denver Broncos

Concussion, Initial Injury: 12/19/21

Teddy Bridgewater gave us the biggest scare on this Week 16 injury report. The Denver QB was scrambling for a first down last week when he dove forward and fell hard on his head. Bridgewater laid on the ground for an extended period of time and had to be carted off the field on a stretcher. He was taken to the hospital and diagnosed with a concussion.

A concussion refers to a mild traumatic brain injury that causes disruption to the functions of the brain. Concussions are still largely a mystery and can affect players differently. There is no clear timetable for a player’s return although typically NFL players are able to return in about a week. However, this will not be the case for Bridgewater. He has been officially ruled out for Week 16, meaning backup QB Drew Lock will start.

Bridgewater is out this week with a concussion. – SIT

Sterling Shepard (WR) New York Giants

Achilles Tear, Initial Injury: 12/19/21

The Giants can’t stay out of the injury report or loss column this season, and Week 16 is no different. New York WR Sterling Shepard injured his leg last week in a non-contact movement. One of the biggest concerns for non-contact injuries is an Achilles tear, which is exactly what happened here. The Achilles refers to a tendon that connects your calf to your heel. Unfortunately, during very quick movements and under the right conditions, this tendon can tear causing extreme pain and disability. Shepard’s season is over and he faces a long road of rehabilitation ahead of him. A tough break for a player who has dealt with injury issues his entire NFL career.

Shepard tore his Achilles and is done for the year. – DROP

Chris Godwin (WR) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

ACL Tear, Initial Injury: 12/19/21

Chris Godwin’s injury is likely the most impactful on this Week 16 injury report. Both Tom Brady and fantasy managers will be without one of their favorite targets for the rest of the year. Godwin was tackled low against the Saints last week and was ruled out of the game with a knee injury. The initial belief was that he suffered only a minor knee injury but an MRI revealed he in fact tore his ACL. The ACL is one of the key stabilizing ligaments in your knee and allows you to run and change directions properly. The Tampa Bay WR is officially out for the season and this injury has the potential to be career-altering.

Godwin is out for the season with an ACL tear. – DROP

Leonard Fournette (RB) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Hamstring Strain, Initial Injury: 12/19/21

The Week 16 injury report is quickly finding familiar faces in Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers lead RB is dealing with a hamstring strain that he picked up in last week’s game. Leonard Fournette was quickly ruled out of the game and unable to return. At this time, the expectation is he is likely out for the rest of the regular season and will be placed on the injured reserve list. Tampa Bay has also signed veteran RB Le’Veon Bell to add some depth to the now depleted backfield.

Hamstring injuries are among the most concerning for NFL players. They are difficult to manage as they reinjure easily and greatly hinder a player’s ability. The hamstring muscle generates most of the power for a player’s lower body and allows them to run and jump. Fournette is expected to be back for the postseason but will need to be diligent and careful with his rehab.

Fournette is likely to miss the rest of the regular season. – SIT

A.J. Brown (WR) Tennessee Titans

Chest Injury, Initial Injury: 11/21/21

The Titans receive some positive news via the Week 16 injury report. They will likely have both of their star WRs back for this game. WR AJ Brown is trending towards playing Thursday after spending some extended time on the IR. He has returned to practice this week and barring any setbacks in pregame warm-ups, he should be good to go. Additionally, he is dealing with an undisclosed chest injury but appears likely to be activated off the IR. Monitor this up until he is officially activated before the game.

Brown is likely to play tonight. – START/MONITOR

Current COVID-19 List

The NFL is currently dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak amongst numerous teams. With so many players affected, it will be easier to simply keep an updated list of all the Fantasy Football relevant names. The list will be updated daily to remain current. Here is a reminder of the NFL’s COVID-19 rules:

– Vaccinated players who test positive can return to play after producing 2 negative tests, at least 24 hours apart
– Vaccinated players don’t have to quarantine as a “high-risk” close contact with an infected person
– Unvaccinated players who test positive will miss a minimum of 10 days before returning to play
– Unvaccinated players have a 5-day quarantine if they are a “high-risk” close contact with an infected person

Vaccinated Players – QUESTIONABLE Week 16

Zach Pascal (WR) Indianapolis Colts

Tyler Huntley (QB) Baltimore Ravens

Laviska Shenault (WR) Jacksonville Jaguars

Rhamondre Stevenson (RB) New England Patriots

Ryan Griffin (TE) New York Jets

Chase McLaughlin (K) Cleveland Browns

Taysom Hill (QB) New Orleans Saints

Marquez Valdes-Scantling (WR) Green Bay Packers

Brandin Cooks (WR) Houston Texans

Ka’imi Fairbairn (K) Houston Texans

Elijah Moore (WR) New York Jets

Travis Kelce (TE) Kansas City Chiefs

Sammy Watkins (WR) Baltimore Ravens

Allen Robinson II (WR) Chicago Bears

Baker Mayfield (QB) Cleveland Browns

Case Keenum (QB) Cleveland Browns

Kareem Hunt (RB) Cleveland Browns

Jarvis Landry (WR) Cleveland Browns

Jared Goff (QB) Detroit Lions

Marquez Valdes-Scantling (WR) Green Bay Packers

Tyreek Hill (WR) Kansas City Chiefs

Josh Gordon (WR) Kansas City Chiefs

Kendrick Bourne (WR) New England Patriots

Tyler Lockett (WR) Seattle Seahawks

Breshad Perriman (WR) Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Austin Ekeler (RB) Los Angeles Chargers

Jalen Guyton (WR) Los Angeles Chargers

Adam Trautman (TE) New Orleans Saints

Unvaccinated Players – OUT Week 16

Harrison Butker (K) Kansas City Chiefs

Cole Beasley (WR) Buffalo Bills

Gabriel Davis (WR) Buffalo Bills

Dalvin Cook (RB) Minnesota Vikings

Mike Williams (WR) Los Angeles Chargers

This injury report updates until Week 16 ends. Make sure to stay up to date on all the latest injuries this season over on Twitter @SGPNFootballDoc!

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My goal is to break down various injuries in a simple format for your benefit. Learn something, find fantasy value, or beat the sportsbook, I’m here for it all!

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