The Dynasty Doctor: Week Five Injury Report

Scott Peak

Editor’s Note:
 Injuries are a huge part of winning and losing each year in fantasy leagues. Staying abreast of the injury situations is key as knowing what to expect from your players health-wise in the short term can help you make educated decisions in managing your team. Lucky for us, we have a Doctor in the house. Dr. Scott Peak is an ABPN board certified neurologist and neuro-oncologist. He is also a dynasty football addict and a Senior Writer for Dynasty League Football. He’s excited to lend his expertise in medicine with hopes he may help the DLF Team and its followers better understand medical conditions and injuries that may impact NFL players and dynasty football owners.  

If you have a question for The Dynasty Doctor, just click here. Please remember The Dynasty Doctor is geared towards questions regarding medical science, injuries to players and their collective impact in fantasy football. Stay tuned each week as we’ll post his thoughts each and every Tuesday.

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Jamaal Charles, RB KC

Bad news for Charles, as he has a torn ACL in the right knee. It was a non-contact injury, and an ACL is often torn without contact. It has to do with planting the foot in a hyper-valgus position (knee bent inward while the planted foot is out laterally, like being ‘knock-kneed’). Quadriceps force is greatest on the ACL and it tears. It’s really just bad luck. For Charles owners, this is tough news, given his left knee ACL tear in 2011. Charcandrick West had 7 carries for 31 yards and 1 reception for 5 yards in relief of Charles. Knile Davis enthusiasts who have championed his “athletic freak” status for years saw him get 2 yards rushing on 2 attempts. Pierre Thomas may find his way to Kansas City. Ahmad Bradshaw should be on fantasy radars as well. If I have to decide between West and Davis long-term, I’ll take Davis.

TJ Yeldon, RB JAC

Yeldon exited week 5 late in the game with a groin injury, and he downplayed the severity after the game. Yeldon could only manage 32 yards rushing on 11 attempts against an anemic Buccaneers defense, but did have 5 receptions for 31 yards and a receiving touchdown to save his fantasy owners. Hopefully Yeldon won’t miss time but I don’t think there is a player of interest behind him. Toby Gerhart and Bernard Pierce are pedestrian talents. There’s not a lot to like here.

Justin Forsett, RB BAL

Forsett had a big game but left with a right ankle injury. After the game, Forsett noted that his right ankle got rolled up on, and needed further evaluation. Forsett had a nice game, rushing 21 times for 121 yards, 1 rushing touchdown and 4 receptions for 49 yards. Javorius Allen pitched in 8 carries for 58 yards. Head coach John Harbaugh said it’s not a high-ankle sprain, so that’s good. If so, Forsett will hopefully be back soon. Monitor his practice participation this week.

Matt Jones, RB WAS

Jones suffered a sprained toe, and could only manage 20 yards on 11 rushing attempts. He did score a rushing touchdown, saving his fantasy owners from a dismal day. He also had 1 reception for 17 yards. Depending on severity, he might not miss time, 1-2 weeks or longer. Alfred Morris had 8 carries for 15 yards and no touchdowns. Morris is having a tough time this year. In PPR leagues, Chris Thompson looks like the best option this year (3 carries for 15 yards, 6 receptions for 33 yards). Monitor Jones’ practice participation before inserting him back into line-ups.

Marques Colston, WR NO

Colston injured his right shoulder and was spotted after the game wearing a sling. Colston is fading as a dynasty asset, with Willie Snead (6 receptions for 141 yards) and Brandin Cooks (5 receptions for 107 yards and 1 touchdown) taking priority in the passing game. Colston has a separated shoulder and this looks like a multi-week injury. Conservatively managed (non-surgical) could be 2-6 weeks, but if surgery is required, it could be a longer recovery (3-6 months).

Nelson Agholor, WR PHI

Agholor injured a muscle in the left leg. It doesn’t sound serious but an MRI is on tap. Agholor has a grand total of 105 yards receiving on 8 receptions this year, and in three games he could only manage 2 receptions for 10 yards. Agholor isn’t a fantasy option in re-draft leagues at this pace. This injury doesn’t sound serious so his dynasty value is retained.

Julio Jones, WR ATL

Jones was questionable with a hamstring injury but was able to play. Jones had a subpar game by his standards (5 receptions for 67 yards and he recovered a fumble in the end zone to score a touchdown). Hamstrings can be tricky (see Odell Beckham next). I’ve had Jones as a sell-high for a couple years. I love his talent but given his supreme valuation and yet history of injuries, I wonder if a lateral move to a similarly valued player is the most pragmatic move. Monitor this one closely.

Odell Beckham Jr, WR NYG

Beckham Jr had a huge game on Sunday Night Football with 7 receptions for 121 yards and 1 touchdown. He also had 1 rushing attempt for 3 yards. Unfortunately, Beckham injured a hamstring and was out for a chunk of the 4th quarter. After the game, Beckham was interviewed and didn’t think it was a serious injury. Given his history of hamstring injuries, this is still a concern. Hopefully it’s a minor tweak but his history of balky hamstrings has me a bit nervous. I’ve had Beckham as a sell in dynasty formats, given his high valuation and persistent hamstring problems. Hopefully Beckham can play through it but aggravated hamstring injuries can be tough to shake. If I could trade Beckham or Jones for LeVeon Bell I’d do it.

DeAndre Levy, LB DET

Levy was removed from the game with an aggravation of his hip injury. This is a significant concern and I have to wonder if Levy is going to miss a lot more time this year. Details on the injury haven’t been revealed, and Levy downplayed the injury after the game, saying it wasn’t as bad as the initial injury. Monitor this one closely. Josh Bynes had 3 tackles but no solos. The Lions safeties may be the primary beneficiaries, as James Ihedigbo (6 tackles, 5 solos) and Glover Quin (6 tackles, 5 solos) were the top tacklers against the Cardinals.

DeMarcus Ware, DL DEN

Ware was unable to return after a back injury, described as back spasms. It’s being called a two week injury. Ware will need pain improvement to a tolerable level, have effective range of motion and no serious underlying structural abnormality (disc herniation, spinal canal narrowing) to return in a two week range. We will have to monitor this situation closely, but hopefully he can return soon.

Devy leagues:

Nick Chubb, RB University of Georgia

Chubb sustained a serious knee injury, tearing multiple ligaments, including the posterior cruciate ligament, but fortunately has an intact ACL. He did not have nerve or artery damage, and that is great news. Surgery is planned in two weeks, and that is typical, as scar tissue formation can complicate these surgeries and adversely impact outcome if done later.

Surgery is associated with an improved outcome for grade III posterior cruciate ligament tears and is also advised for significant posterior-lateral corner injuries. Success rates with surgery are 50-70 percent return to sports at previous performance, and a greater overall percentage with return to sport but with decline in performance. Residual laxity can complicate recovery but surgery helps. Osteoarthritis can be associated with grade III posterior cruciate ligament injuries.

Chubb stands a good chance to return to sport and still could return to his prior level of performance. Still, this is a serious injury, one with a long rehabilitation, and return to his prior performance will depend on the effectiveness of surgery, rehabilitation and residual damage/laxity to the knee. It’s good that the ACL wasn’t torn, or that would’ve complicated his recovery.

Expect a 9-12 month rehabilitation at a minimum, and his ability to start the 2016 season is questionable. There is an impact on his dynasty value, and his owners will have to decide whether to trade him at a discount or hold out and hope for the best. Unless the offer is enticing, I’d probably hold him and bet on his return to play sometime in 2016.


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