Fantasy Football: Week 3 Injury Recap

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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 3 and take a look at what fantasy managers can expect heading into Week 4 and beyond.

Don’t forget to check out 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.

Christian McCaffrey

Hamstring Strain: Out 2-3 Weeks
McCaffrey left Thursday Night Football early with a strained left hamstring and didn’t return. The word out of Carolina is that McCaffrey is going to miss “a few weeks” yet the team has not put their star RB on injured reserve, suggesting their tentative plan is to have him back in Week 6. This injury won’t heal in one week, so we know he’ll miss at least Week 4, but I’d be planning on McCaffrey to miss Week 5 as well based on the severity of injury.

Players impacted: Chuba Hubbard, Royce Freeman

James White

Right Hip Subluxation: Out at least 3 weeks
James White suffered an injury similar to that of Ryan Fitzpatrick in Week 1. White landed on the front of his right knee with his hip flexed and a defender’s body weight on his back, which can lead to a subluxation of the hip, otherwise known as a partial dislocation. White is likely to land on injured reserve and should miss somewhere between 4-8 weeks depending on the severity of the injury, which will be determined by imaging studies done early in the week.

Players impacted: Damien Harris, Rhamondre Stevenson, J.J. Taylor

A.J. Brown

Hamstring Strain: Out Week 4 and likely longer
Brown exited the Titans’ Week 3 game against the Colts in the 1st quarter and didn’t return. News surfaced on Monday that the Titans are calling Brown “week to week” but the reality is that Brown has a slim chance of playing just seven days after injury. If somehow he is active, he’d be at significant risk for reinjury and would likely be ineffective. I expect him to sit in Week 4 and possibly land on IR. This is a player who had offseason surgery on both knees and now adds a hamstring issue into the mix, a recipe that is likely to spell a longer recovery.

Players impacted: Julio Jones, Chester Rogers, Ryan Tannehill

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Sterling Shepard & Darius Slayton

Hamstring Strain: Both players Out Week 4
Kenny Golladay (hip) and Evan Engram (calf) both entered Week 3 questionable, and now the Giants pass-catching group added two injuries to the list. WRs Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton both picked up hamstring injuries in the Giants’ loss to the Falcons. Both players are being called “week to week” but like A.J. Brown, that means they’re both very unlikely to play in Week 4. Given their position relies on speed, both players are candidates to miss multiple games.

Players impacted: Kenny Golladay, Daniel Jones, Evan Engram

JuJu Smith-Schuster

Rib Contusion: Day to day
JuJu Smith-Schuster left the Steelers’ game in the 3rd quarter with a rib injury and didn’t return. On Monday, we got the news that JuJu did not suffer any broken ribs but is dealing with bruised ribs, which can be just as painful. However, this is an injury that JuJu can play through as early as Week 4 depending on how he responds to treatment throughout the week. It’s essentially a pain tolerance issue, so his practice status will be crucial to monitor this week.

Players impacted: Chase Claypool, Diontae Johnson, James Washington, Ben Roethlisberger

K.J. Hamler

Left Knee Torn ACL: Out for the year
Hamler went up for a catch and landed awkwardly on his left leg, immediately grabbing the injured knee. A Monday MRI confirmed that Hamler tore the ACL in his left knee. He will undergo season-ending reconstruction surgery and now faces a significant recovery. Based on the way Hamler’s knee bowed, there is a concern for additional damage to the knee beyond just the ACL injury. The way his knee moved suggests possible injury to the LCL, the ligament that sits on the outside of the knee. The team has not yet confirmed this is the case, so dynasty managers will want to follow Hamler closely as this multi-ligament knee injury would put his Week 1 in 2022 in jeopardy.

Players impacted: Courtland Sutton, Tim Patrick, Teddy Bridgewater

Scotty Miller

Turf Toe: Out at least 3 weeks
Miller is likely to land on IR in the next couple of days as he picked up a turf toe injury in Sunday’s loss to the Rams. Turf toe injuries, even if mild, can take multiple weeks to heal but head coach Bruce Arians described Miller’s injury as “pretty severe.” While this doesn’t tell us much information and the coach isn’t always the best source of information, it does tell us Miller is going to miss several weeks and could be in for a lengthy absence.

Players impacted: Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown

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Giovani Bernard

Sprained MCL: Out Week 4
Bernard picked up an injury late in the Bucs game, suffering a mild sprain of the MCL. It’s being reported that Bernard is “day to day” yet the reality here is that even a mild MCL sprain wouldn’t allow a running back to function at a high level just seven days out from injury. Expect Gio to miss a week, but he could return in Week 5.

Players impacted: Leonard Fournette, Ronald Jones

Elijah Moore

Concussion: Week to week
Elijah Moore picked up a concussion in Sunday’s loss to the Broncos and now enters the NFL’s 5-step concussion protocol. As with any concussion, the recovery process is non-linear, so Moore could be back in just a week, depending on his progress. Monitor the Jets’ practice reports this week.

Players impacted: Corey Davis, Jamison Crowder, Braxton Berrios, Zach Wilson


Brandon Willis says:

Anything about Kittle? DNP today so is that going to be a problem?

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