Fantasy football injuries of Week 16: Steven Jackson, Toby Gerhart get hurt
It wasn’t the most brutal of weeks, but some players did go down with injuries. Let’s look take a look.
There weren’t a lot of fantasy-crippling injuries in Week 16. We saw some guys go out and not return, but, by and large, they weren’t guys you were counting on. We saw some guys you were counting on go out, but the majority of them made it back onto the field. Even DeMarco Murray put up at least respectable numbers before getting shut down.
But at least you had some warning with those. I really feel for anyone who had to count on Steven Jackson Sunday, only to lose him in the first quarter. Situations like that, all you can do is shrug.
Let’s look at the injuries of the week:
Quarterback injuries in Week 16
- The Browns lost Johnny Manziel early Sunday to a hamstring injury. The team is saying he’s questionable for Week 17, and Brian Hoyer looked at least in the range of competence as a backup. Still, there’s no future with Hoyer, and the team needs to figure out what it has in Manziel, so if he can go in Week 17, it stands to reason he will.
- Aaron Rodgers strained his calf early Sunday. He played the whole game, though. After it was over, Mike McCarthy said that the team had to accommodate Rodgers’ injury and change its play calling. There’s no reason to think this will significantly inhibit Rodgers for Week 17, but at the least you need to pay attention to practice reports during the week to make sure he’s fine.
Running back injuries in Week 16
- LeGarrette Blount was something of a surprise inactive Sunday, as he had been dealing with a shoulder injury but was expected to play. Without him, against a stout Jets‘ run defense, Shane Vereen, Brandon Bolden and Jonas Gray combined to rush for 75 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries. Expect more of a mix of the three if Blount’s injury continues to keep him out.
- Jacksonville finished Thursday night’s game without Toby Gerhart, as the running back suffered a rib injury in the second half and missed the rest of the game. Ultimately, this is probably irrelevant — it is the Jaguars, after all — but if Gerhart were to miss Week 17 against Houston, Jordan Todman would be mildly interesting.
- I didn’t have Steven Jackson in any fantasy game I was playing in Week 16, and I’m still bitter about it. He injured his quad early in the game, meaning he couldn’t take advantage of what should have been a premium matchup against the Saints‘ run defense. Instead, Devonta Freeman and Jacquizz Rodgers carried the ball, and they were — meh. You’d have to hope Jackson can return for the Week 17 winner-take-all game against Carolina, though it’s too early to know for sure.
- Despite his hand injury, DeMarco Murray played Sunday against the Colts and scored a touchdown, though the team shut him down early with the game well in hand. Despite playing, Joseph Randle and Lance Dunbar were both involved in the team’s offense, and Murray was clearly hindered by the injury. The thing is now that the Cowboys have locked up the NFC East, and they can’t get a first-round bye without a fair amount of help, so there’s not much reason to press Murray in Week 17.
- The Saints lost Pierre Thomas to a foot injury Sunday, leaving them with only Mark Ingram and Khiry Robinson to carry the ball. Thomas hasn’t been very fantasy-relevant this season, mostly serving as a person to steal touches from Ingram. If Thomas were to miss Week 17, the best bet is Ingram continues to get about the same number of touches he’s been getting, and Robinson (and perhaps Travaris Cadet) sees more.
Wide receiver injuries in Week 16
- The Patriots were without Julian Edelman Sunday, as he hadn’t cleared the concussion protocol. You never know with a concussion, so all you can really do with Edelman is pay attention and hope he plays. If he doesn’t, Brandon LaFell certainly looks interesting for Week 17.
- The Jets lost Percy Harvin to a rib injury in the third quarter Sunday. He had four catches for 44 yards before leaving. Harvin seems to always battle injury, and with only a game left in the season and not much to play for, there’s every reason to think Harvin is done for the season.
- The Colts’ offense couldn’t do anything at all without T.Y. Hilton Sunday, as the receiver sat out with a hamstring injury. It seems like he was close for the game, so he very well might be fine for Week 17. That said, the Colts are locked in to a No. 3 or 4 seed, so there isn’t a lot of reason to push the receiver if they aren’t sure. Definitely keep this on your radar.
- Charles Johnson suffered a hamstring injury in the second quarter Sunday, and played sparingly after that. With Greg Jennings and Jarius Wright there (and Cordarrelle Patterson, for whatever that’s worth), the Vikings actually have a moderately interesting receiver corps when they’re all healthy. And since Johnson did come back to play Sunday, even if he wasn’t at full strength, there’s every reason to expect him to play in Week 17.
- Julio Jones had 107 yards Sunday, playing through his oblique injury. He said after the game he would be fine for Week 17, and considering the team will be playing for its playoff life, he’ll absolutely be on the field.