Week 8 Fantasy Football Injury Recap
As The Fantasy Footballers’ lead injury analyst and sports physical therapist, I’ll be recapping the previous week’s injuries and giving a projected timeline for recovery all season long. Let’s look at the biggest injuries from Week 8 and take a look at what fantasy managers can expect heading into Week 9 and beyond.
Don’t forget to check out JoinTheFoot.com for additional premium resources, including access to the Injury Blitz Podcast hosted by yours truly. This bonus podcast, available to all #FootClan Premier members, is a short, yet informative injury podcast that drops late in the week in order to provide all the injury updates you need to set your lineup each week.
RB Jonathan Taylor
Aggravated Ankle Injury: Likely to continue to play at less than 100%
Jonathan Taylor missed time earlier this year with his ankle injury, and on Sunday, he aggravated the same injury. JT did finish the game, but he was largely ineffective after he re-injured the ankle, rushing for 38 yards on 11 carries following the injury. It’s been a disappointing season for Taylor thus far, and this ankle injury is likely to continue to limit his effectiveness in the short term. As of now, I do not expect Taylor to miss games moving forward, but there’s a very good chance he’s missing practice time and is playing at less than 100% over the next couple of weeks.
Players impacted: Nyheim Hines, Deon Jackson
RB Gus Edwards
Hamstring Strain: Questionable for Week 9
The Gus Bus is temporarily out of service. He returned in Week 7 from his complex 2021 ACL injury and is now dealing with a hamstring strain, which he picked up on Thursday night against the Bucs. While this injury is not necessarily related to the ACL (in other words, the ACL injury did not cause this compensation), it is on the same leg as the ACL surgery. Hamstring strength is extremely important in performance after ACL surgery, so this injury is something that fantasy managers should monitor closely. His head coach called him “day to day” and questionable for Monday Night Football this week against the Saints. The vast majority of NFL RBs miss at least one game with a hamstring injury, and when you consider the year Edwards had rehabbing, it would make sense for the team to be cautious with their current RB1, especially considering J.K. Dobbins is on IR.
Players impacted: Kenyan Drake, Justice Hill
RB Mark Ingram
MCL Sprain: Out 3-4 weeks
Ingram suffered a grade II (partially torn) MCL sprain on Sunday against the Raiders. He’ll miss upwards of a month with this injury, but the good news for partial MCL sprains is that they heal reliably without surgery. The Saints are extremely banged up right now, with Ingram, Michael Thomas, Jarvis Landry and Adam Trautman all dealing with injuries of their own. Behind Alvin Kamara, the Saints only have Dwayne Washington on the active roster. Look for them to make a practice squad move or sign a free agent.
Players impacted: Alvin Kamara
WR Cooper Kupp
Right Ankle Sprain: Expected to play in Week 9
Kupp injured his right ankle at the very end of the Rams loss to the 49ers this past Sunday, suffering an inversion (low) ankle sprain. Fortunately this is not a high ankle sprain, but that doesn’t necessarily mean Kupp will be 100% for Week 9. Given that this is a relatively minor ankle injury, there’s a good chance Kupp is available in Week 9 against the Bucs, but look for Kupp to miss practice time this week. This is not expected to be a long-term injury. If for some unexpected reason Kupp can’t go this week, I do expect him back out there in Week 10.
Players impacted: Matthew Stafford, Allen Robinson, Tyler Higbee, Van Jefferson
WR Rashod Bateman
Foot Sprain: Out multiple weeks
Bateman missed Weeks 5 and 6 with his foot injury then returned in Week 7. He entered Week 8 questionable with the foot injury on a short week on TNF, but left in the first quarter after aggravating that same injury. This spells bad news for Bateman’s short term outlook as he’s yet again set to miss multiple games rehabbing the same foot issue. It’ll be at least 2-3 weeks before Bateman is back on the field (potentially longer depending on his he responds to rehab), but fantasy managers should be mindful that it’ll take even longer for him to be 100% as far as his performance goes. If you don’t have an IR spot, it’s safe to move on from Bateman in redraft leagues.
Players impacted: Lamar Jackson, Devin Duvernay
WR DeVante Parker
MCL Sprain: Likely Out Week 9
Parker sprained the MCL in his knee on Sunday against the Jets and didn’t return, exiting in the first half. The reports out of New England suggest this is a mild Grade I sprain, but even a mild MCL injury puts Parker likely on the wrong side of questionable for Week 9 as this injury typically takes 1-2 weeks to heal. He’s got an outside chance to play, but given that the Patriots are on bye in Week 10, it would make sense for Parker to be out for this week’s upcoming game against the Colts. Expect Parker back in Week 11.
Players impacted: Jakobi Meyers, Hunter Henry, Mac Jones
WR Christian Watson
Concussion: Week to week
The Packers rookie WR missed the prior two weeks with a hamstring injury and finally got back in the lineup on Sunday night against Buffalo. However, he exited in the first quarter with a concussion and didn’t return. Watson now enters the league’s protocol and should be considered questionable for Week 9. No two concussions are the same, and no two players respond the same way, but this season, the average time missed is one game. We’ll have to monitor the Packers’ injury report throughout the week in order to assess Watson’s availability for Week 9.
Players impacted: Romeo Doubs, Allen Lazard, Aaron Rodgers
TE Mark Andrews
Knee and Shoulder Injuries: Likely to continue to play at less than 100%
Andrews entered TNF questionable due to a knee injury, but it was the shoulder injury that forced him to exit early. Andrews caught a pass on a short crossing route and landed on his right shoulder with the defender’s body weight on top of him, which is the classic mechanism for a sprained AC joint. This injury is extremely common in football players, and often times, guys can play through this injury as long as it’s minor. If pain is an issue, an injection can be used to help the player feel more comfortable. One thing working in Andrews favor is the mini bye week after the Thursday game and the extra day for Week 9 as the Ravens play on Monday night instead of Sunday. Expect Andrews to play through both injuries but at less than 100%.
Players impacted: Lamar Jackson, Devin Duvernay
TE Irv Smith Jr.
Left High Ankle Sprain: Out 8-10 weeks
Smith got his ankle rolled up on this past Sunday against the Cardinals, which is the classic mechanism for a high ankle sprain. After an MRI on Monday, tests revealed that Irv’s injury is serious. He’s expected to be out 8-10 weeks and land on IR. We’re entering Week 9, which means Smith’s season is effectively over. He can safely be dropped, especially considering the team traded for T.J. Hockenson.
Players impacted: Kirk Cousins, Adam Thielen, Justin Jefferson, T.J. Hockenson