Week 6-Doubtful, Questionable, and Probable (DQP) Players

October 11, 2014

Here is how we see this weeks big injuries playing out.  No need to list the players who are ruled out as we already know they won’t play.  Let’s take a look at the DQP players, so you can hit the waiver wire or your bench for a winning line up.

Doubtful

optimus and megatron
Down goes Megatron!

Calvin Johnson (You should plan to be without him for 2-3 weeks….even if he suits up!)

 Megatron is the only player of significance on this list and frankly I am tired of talking about him.  So, I won’t.   If you follow me, then you saw Johnson going down before he actually did; and if you continue to follow me, I will let you know when he will return as a productive part of your fantasy team.  Until then, just sit tight.  Bonus: For those who go a little beyond fantasy players, the Detroit Lions very well may not win a game until he returns.

Questionable

A.J. Green (Trade him)

Im not sure why Green is even listed as questionable.  I know the designations for injuries can sometimes be chess in the NFL, but I think we are all pretty confident he doesn’t play.  If he plays, I think that A.J. Green and the rest of the Bengals organization should all be on the injury list for concussion like symptoms. In case you missed it, go to http://theinjuryreportdoctor.com/2014/10/10/trade-a-j-green-today/ to check out why you should trade A.J. Green now.

Carson Palmer (NO!)

If you are desperate for a QB on a bye week, I could see how this could be on your radar.  I don’t plan to see Palmer play well any time soon, if ever.  You will have to look elsewhere to fill in your QB stats.

Joe Haden (Start who ever you can on the Steelers offense)

joe haden and antonio brown
This would have been a nice matchup for week 6 but Im sure Antonio Brown won’t miss Joe Haden when he gets to the end zone on Sunday.

Now because we are mostly focused on fantasy, you may not see many defensive players make our stories.  Since defenders do not typically contribute individually to fantasy scoring (unless your name is J. J. Watt), we usually stick to offense.  However in the case of Cleveland Browns cornerback Joe Haden, there are a few notable implications.  First and foremost, his absence makes the Browns defense “unstartable” ( I know that is not a word).  Furthermore, I think it makes Antonio Brown a bigger stud than he already is; as well as making Big Ben, Heath Miller and just about the whole offense of the Steelers have increased value this week.  Also, Ive heard a lot of predictions that the Brown will win this game and while I don’t care enough to make a pick on this game; I believe that Haden being out may change some tunes.  The Browns are quiet on the exact injury to his hip, but a broken fingernail against Antonio Brown would be too much.  I either expect him to not play or not play well.  You can do a lot with this information with the fantasy players and the game itself, but the best value is likely in Big Ben and Antonio Brown against a talented but not ready rookie cornerback in Justin Gilbert.

Vernon Davis (You may have to carry 2 Tight Ends for a while)

Davis is listed with a back injury that he suffered 2 weeks ago when he played with an ankle injury that was barely healed.  The good news is Davis has practiced 3 days in a row.  In my opinion the bad news is that all of these practices have been non contact.  The quotes that Davis has given locally and the nature of his injuries tell me that he will either not play or not play well.  My guess is that one good hit to his back or a hard fall sends him back into spasms and even without being hit, I doubt he can perform like the Vernon Davis we know.  Because TE is such a tough position to get production from, I think I would still hold on to him.  In this very unique case, carrying a second tight end until Davis can get another healthy chance is probably the best move.  I expect Davis to still have a couple of big days in him this year once he has time to heal.  I think the wisest move for the Niners would be to rest him until week 9 (after their bye) and finish the year strong.

Probable

All of the notable Probable players are not worth your time or mine, as they will all play.  That includes Julio Jones, Dez Bryant, Percy Harvin and others.  I expect all of the notable players on the Probable listing to play like their healthy, as none of the injuries appear to be serious.

Good Luck!

Week 5-Doubtul, Questionable, and Probable (DQP) players

Here is how we see this weeks big injuries playing out.  No need to list the players who are ruled out as we already know they won’t play.  Let’s take a look at the DQP players, so you can hit the waiver wire or your bench for a winning line up.

Probable

brandon marshall

Brandon Marshall (Start him with confidence)

Marshall has been playing with an injured ankle since hurting it in week 1.  Although he gets out there and plays every week and I expect him to do the same this week, he has grossly been a decoy or non factor.  Even with a 3 TD performance in week 2 at San Francisco, he only had 48 yards.  His skill set does allow him to play with this injury as he can still be productive without the quickness and cuts that his ankle is likely limiting him with.  With that said, keep in mind that it has been 3 weeks since his injury and most mild ankle sprains are mostly healed within that time or less.  Marshall likely could have improved faster by taking some time off, but I expect him to be closer to his normal self this week and put up normal Brandon Marshall numbers against a tough Carolina defense that has had a few hiccups this year.  No bubble screens or crisp route running is likely just yet, but I see no reason why Marshalls’ ankle won’t allow him to post up in the end zone and score.  I would start him with confidence.

Jamal Charles (The 49ers defense is a bigger factor than his ankle sprain at this point)

Charles bounced back pretty quickly from his high ankle sprain to light The Patriots up.  I see no reason why he is not physically able to perform this week with the exception of The San Francisco 49ers.  There is the likelihood that he still has some lingering swelling and pain, but based on his performance last week and the fact that he will be 3 weeks out, I think Charles is back to business as usual.

Questionable

teddy-bridgewater-target-blunder
Check out the questionable spelling at a local store. I guess Teddy will have to win a few more games so they will spell his name correctly.

Teddy Bridgewater (Get him ready for week 6 at home vs. the Lions)

The Vikings should not play him and nor should you.  After an exciting week for Minnesota fans and those who had Bridgewater in the stash for fantasy, everyone is probably a little over excited about a rookie QB that lit up a sub par defense who had no pro film on him.  With what appears to be a mild eversion sprain or maybe a mild high ankle sprain, I don’t see any way Bridgewater gets on the field in a productive way on Thursday night.  Furthermore the Green Bay weather forecast calls for rain which compromises his footing.  All signs point to sitting Teddy for a week and preserving the excitement that he earned in week 4.  So regardless of what Zimmer and the Vikings do, you should not risk a start on Bridgewater and should plan for another QB to be in your line up.

Carson Palmer (over/under for remaining time in Carson Palmers career is 4 months-never start him.  Take Denver defense if Palmer steps on the field)

Palmer is listed as questionable but I would have put him as doubtful.  Those who read my recent story on Palmer know that I do not have high hopes for Palmer when/if he comes back.  With the nerve injury in his throwing shoulder now causing him to see a second specialist confirms my initial fears that this is the beginning of the end for Palmer.  As a general rule of thumb, players don’t seek a second opinion for injuries that are doing well.  I doubt anyone plans to start him at Denver, but just in case…..DON’T.  The smarter bet is probably betting on Denver to cover if Palmer is in the lineup.  I don’t expect Palmer to throw well at all if he is on the field and a Palmer start elevates the Denver Broncos Defense to a start in my opinion.

Vernon Davis (Sit him if you can)

We predicted that Vernon Davis would play against Philly and also predicted that he would not play well.  Although this small example does not make me right (yet), but I also predicted that Davis is near The Redzone stage of his career and likely to decline rapidly.  I feel like this week will be a continuation of last week.  It is likely that his ankle is still not fully healed and that his knee also still has pain. As simple as it sounds, the song is true–“the knee bones connected to the thigh bone….the thigh bones connected to the hip bone…. the hip bones connected to the back bone…. All of these injuries become somewhat related and with Davis now suffering from 3 injured areas, other body parts will pick up the slack.  In the case of Davis, I believe a hit triggered the back spasms he is currently suffering from, but I also believe his back was primed for this by him trying to play on an injury, which caused him to compensate by putting more work on his back as well as other body parts.  I would stay away from Davis for a week or 2 if possible, although productive TE’s are tough to find.  I wouldn’t be surprised if he sat this one out or left the game one more injury richer.

Jake Locker (SIt him, start the Browns Defense)

In week 3 we predicted it would be 2-3 weeks before Locker would be effective.  Nothing has changed since then and the prediction is still that his first productive week will be week 6 when the Titans host the Jaguars.  I don’t know if this is really a sleeper play with all the negative pub that Charlie Whitehurst has received, but The Browns Defense may be a good sleeper play here as no matter who plays, the Titans will be fielding an ineffective QB.

Doubtful

There are no key players listed as doubtful so for this week my doubtful is The entire Atlanta Falcons team.  They are very banged up  and are holding open tryout for various positions (just kidding).  I would stay away from them all, if possible for fantasy, and expect the Giants to cover easily at home.

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.