CHECK ME OUT EVERY WEEK ON FANTASYPROS.COM

Don’t forget to check me out over at FantasyPros.com every week for “Put him in the game OR Sit him on the bench” to get the latest take on the injured players of the week!

If I don’t cover the player you are interested in, contact me @DrPettyIRD before game time to get expert injury analysis that may save you from that poor performance or goose egg out of your fantasy player.

Good Luck!

HOW THE NFL JUST MADE FANTASY FOOTBALL HARDER FOR YOU!

What would you do with your star wide receiver if going into Sunday you did not know whether he had a 50-percent chance of playing or a 90-percent chance of playing? Would you play him and risk him not taking the field or possibly taking the field strictly as a decoy? Would you sit him and start a back-up who at best is half the player?

This upcoming NFL season may present this dilemma more often than any other season now that the NFL has eliminated the probable designation from the injury report. They have their reasons, but you can read about that elsewhere. What really matters is how this will affect your fantasy team.

If you have played fantasy football for any length of time, chances are you have been burned by an injury or two. The worst feeling is to have that perfect line up in place, only to have one of your players lay a goose egg because of an injury. Many of us understand that there is an increased risk to playing a player who has any injury designation coming into the week, but many of us are not qualified to truly calculate that risk. With the probable tag being eliminated and the NFL planning to only give use a “questionable” or “doubtful” designation, you will have even worst odds in figuring out the status of your player.

It appears that the “doubtful” tag will signify that a player has less than a 50-percent chance of playing, while a questionable tag signifies a 50-percent or greater chance of playing. When you set your lineups on Sunday morning, I think knowing which player has a 50-percent chance of playing vs. the player who has a 99-percent chance of playing would be a big deal. With the probable designation gone, both players will have the same tag of “questionable”.

I don’t think this is and end of the world type problem for fantasy football, but I think we can agree that this will heighten the difficulty in a sport where injuries are inevitable. Season long leagues will feel the blow least, as you will likely get a heads up before kick-off on your players availability. Although the chance of getting completely burned is less in season long, think about the time wasted on a plan B that you may never need.

Daily fantasy players will have it even tougher as switching one player late may disrupt your entire salary cap and change the entire make-up of your team. I am more of a Draft Kings guy, but I feel for the FanDuel players who don’t have the late swap option. Without late swap, daily fantasy owners will almost always being taking a calculated risk on a player with a “questionable” designation.

Overall this development will likely increase the time investment for what most of us consider a hobby. Many of you who really take fantasy football seriously will be reading the local reports and trying to find the answer to what a player’s status really is. Some of you will just avoid players with a confusing injury designation and repeatedly get beat by owners who gravitate toward calculated risk. Some of you will just listen to the player or the team to get the player’s status and get “Bill Belichicked” on Sunday when the player you benched has a career day or the player you played never touches the ball.

The smartest option would be none of the above. If you want to know whether a player will play, the simplest thing to do is ask me. If you want to know if an injury will allow a player to be productive, the simplest thing to do is ask me. If you want to know which players have the best production ceiling to injury floor ratio to warrant you taking a calculated risk–Ask me!

As I stated above, most are not qualified to calculate the risk of playing a “questionable” player, but I am. Fortunately I have seen most, if not all the injuries that your players will experience this upcoming season. I would urge you to listen to Injury Science from a healthcare professional such as myself, rather than subjective rhetoric from television personalities and reporters who sometimes may not understand what they are reporting. Although I may be a new name to many of you, I have done this for some time now and my percentages are very favorable in predicting player production during or after injury. Like anything else, I will not be perfect, but I expect to bat 700 or above.

I will be very easy to find this season between FantasyPros.com, TheInjuryReportDoctor.com, and Twitter. Send me those “questionable” questions and get an edge on your competition.

 

Game Time Decision That Matters

 

vernon-davis national anthem

Vernon Davis is a game time decision after spraining the deltoid ligament in his left ankle in week 2.

The Science

The Deltoid ligament is the main ligament on the inside of your ankle.  Many of us who have done anything athletic know that the most common sprain in the ankle occurs by turning the foot inward and causing a sprain to the outside part of the ankle. In the case of Davis, the opposite is what caused the injury.

ankle-sprain-ligs
The image on the left shows the more typical ankle sprain; while the image on the right shows the area that Vernon Davis suffered his injury

Davis suffered what is described above as an eversion sprain.  The main ligament that is injured in this type of sprain in the deltoid ligament.  In these cases, the individual will experience pain on the inside of their ankle that is likely increased when they put the foot down and bear weight.  It is reported that Davis also is listed to have a knee injury, which makes sense considering that when that ankle gets pushed inward to eversion, there is also a valgus (from the outside of the knee pushing it inward toward the other knee) force put on the knee.

Similar to most sprain injuries, treatment includes keeping the ligament unstressed and supporting the joint that the ligament is usually responsible for helping stabilize.  In Davis’ case, he would likely wear a boot and likely have the ankle wrapped to control swelling.  If Davis is a pronator (has flat feet), this injury may be even tougher to handle.  I doubt this is the case as Vernon Davis is the fastest tight end in the game and speed and flat feet don’t usually mix.  This injury for most is about a 3 week deal but for an NFL athlete with a professional staff, I’d give it 2 weeks.

What you need to know

It is likely that Davis will have his ankles wrapped, a shot for pain, and maybe even some extra support in his cleats to reduce his chances of turning that ankle inward again.  That being said, I think he plays….but just not that well.  With your feet and ankles being the liaison between the ground and the rest of your body for impact in regard to running and jumping, an injury like this will likely steal some of Davis’ push off, therefore slowing his straight line speed.  Additionally, I look for him to have a hard time cutting hard to his right.  When cutting to his right, his left knee and ankle will feel the pull to the inside and likely resist, be hesitant, or cause pain.  If the Eagles are smart, they will push him to his right with coverage schemes and more importantly, physically push him to his right to put the pressure on the inside of his left knee and ankle.

Look for Davis to give it a go but to fade as the game goes on.  If he is your starting tight end, you still may get more out of him rather than someone on waivers (as i know you don’t have two tight ends on your roster).  With ILB-Kendricks out for the Eagles, and Nate Allen and possibly Casey Matthews in the area, Davis may put up some big numbers just in the first half.

Rams at 49ers

We expect Davis to be back to 100% in the next 1-2 weeks if he does nothing to aggravate this injury.  But in the long run beware, as Davis is moving toward our Red Zone at 30 years old.  Freaky talented players are the ones who generally drop off quick when Father Time starts draining that talent away.  This may be a preview for more injuries to come in the next couple of years.