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Dynasty Injury Report: Week 13

We list all those players with injury worries and consider how to approach them in your leagues.

Dalvin Cook

My name is Jeff Mueller, Doctor of Physical Therapy and Injury Analyst for DLF, and I am here to help guide you through these weekly injuries and provide helpful insight into how bad the injury is and what the expected timeline for recovery is for your key player. It is important to remember that my analysis is based on limited information provided by teams, beat reporters, and limited video analysis of the injury itself – I am simply here to give you the best estimate possible for how to move forward and plan around player injury.

To help keep track of bye weeks, here is the list:

  • Week 6: Atlanta, New Orleans, NY Jets, SF 49ers
  • Week 7: Buffalo, Dallas, Jacksonville, Minnesota, LA Chargers, Pittsburgh
  • Week 8: Baltimore, Las Vegas
  • Week 9: Detroit, Seattle, Tampa Bay, Washington
  • Week 10: Chicago, Cincinnati, Houston, NY Giants
  • Week 11: Denver, LA Rams
  • Week 12: Arizona, Kansas City
  • Week 13: Carolina, Cleveland, Green Bay, Tennessee
  • Week 14: Indianapolis, Miami, New England, Philadelphia

Good luck to everyone in those final playoff pushes!

Dalvin Cook, RB MIN

Injury: Left Shoulder Dislocation

Return to Play: Week 15-18

Fantasy Impact: Cook has not been placed on IR, but as of right now I am eyeing week 15 (December 20th, Monday night versus the Bears) as his possible return date. The difficult part for fantasy is that it is a Monday night game, so you must decide by Sunday if you are going to start him and he will likely be questionable. Plan to have backups ready for playoffs.

As for the reporting, it has been inconsistent on whether or not Cook has a torn labrum. The answer is likely yes, given he has now suffered two dislocations to his left shoulder (another prior in 2019), as well as injured his left shoulder in high school. He will likely be able to return to the field wearing a shoulder brace for stability, but it would not surprise me if he receives off-season surgery. He is another top running back who I would strongly consider selling very soon.

Adam Thielen, WR MIN

Injury: Left High Ankle Sprain

Return to Play: 3-4 Weeks

Fantasy Impact: Thielen suffered a left high ankle sprain while being tackled. Seeing video of the injury, he took a tremendous amount of stress to the left ankle, so I believe this is more along the “moderate” level of severity. There is a good chance that Thielen is out through most of fantasy playoffs.

KJ Osborn is a must-grab, especially if you need a wide receiver.

Amari Cooper, WR DAL

Injury: COVID

Return to Play:

Fantasy Impact: Cooper will be working on regaining his conditioning after contracting COVID and missing two games. He was used minimally this past week, but you can likely expect his usage to steadily increase each week.

Alvin Kamara, RB NO

Injury: Left Knee Sprain, Likely MCL

Return to Play: Week 14

Fantasy Impact: Kamara has been practicing in a limited capacity since last week, so I expect him to be able to return this week. Keep monitoring practice reports. Once active, he should be a safe play.

Elijah Mitchell, RB SF

Injury: Concussion

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: Mitchell suffered a head injury in week 13 and was assessed for a concussion, but initially cleared screening and returned to the game. This can often happen if a player shows no signs of neurological symptoms, memory lapses, or any other concussion signs or symptoms. Most likely, Mitchell went home that night or woke up the next morning with nausea, a headache, or other concussion symptoms and reported it to the team. He is now in concussion protocol and must pass all five stages in order to play in week 14. Bump to Jeff Wilson Jr and maybe JaMycal Hasty if Mitchell is unable to clear concussion protocol in time.

NOTE: Wilson had a “flare-up” in the same knee he had a meniscus repair and may miss week 14. Hasty would be next man up.

D’Andre Swift, RB DET

Injury: AC Sprain

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: If truly minor, Swift has a decent chance in playing week 14. It will all depend on pain levels and ability to receive and handle the ball. Monitor his practice status.

Damien Harris, RB NE

Injury: Hamstring Strain

Return to Play: Week 15-16

Fantasy Impact: Harris suffered a hamstring strain, left week 13 for a few snaps, then attempted to return to the game. Unfortunately, he cut a run to the right for a long gain and further aggravated his hamstring strain. This will likely be a multi-week absence. Bump to Rhamondre Stevenson.

Deebo Samuel, WR SF

Injury: Groin Strain

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: Samuel suffered a low-grade groin strain that ruled him out for week 13. I have some concern about trusting what the 49ers staff says about injuries given their past history, so it would not surprise me at all if we do not see Samuel return until week 15 or 16, but the hope is that this is just a one-game absence for a low-grade strain and that he is able to play in week 14.

Darrell Henderson, RB LAR

Injury: Quadriceps Strain

Return to Play: Week 14

Fantasy Impact: Henderson was active for week 13, however received zero touches. The Rams were likely protecting him against risk of reinjury. I would expect him to be used more extensively in week 14, but it could remain primarily Sony Michel’s backfield for one-two more weeks. Monitor practice reports, and bump to Sony Michel.

Darren Waller, TE LVR

Injury: IT Band Strain

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: Waller suffered quite an interesting injury, sustaining an iliotibial band injury after being tackled. It takes a tremendous amount of force to injure the IT band, and it can also require an extensive amount of time for it to heal. The Raiders seem optimistic about Waller being able to play in week 14, but I would not be surprised if it takes him another one-two weeks, if not longer.

Allen Robinson, WR CHI

Injury: Hamstring Strain

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: Hamstring strains are typically a one-three week return for low grade. Robinson missed three weeks, so his ability to practice this week will be key. I am getting some 2020 Kenny Golladay vibes on this one, however, and am curious if Robinson is holding out due to not receiving a contract extension and being frustrated with the Bears. The hope is that this is not the case.

Justin Fields, QB CHI

Injury: Ribs

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: Fields suffered a rib injury in week 11, quite possibly fractured ribs that would require two-three weeks to recover. Andy Dalton very well could be the guy for the next few weeks. There is a chance Fields returns, however monitor practice reports. The Bears could play it cautious with him in order to protect their future franchise quarterback from unnecessary trauma.

DeAndre Hopkins, WR ARI

Injury: Hamstring

Return to Play: Week 13-14

Fantasy Impact: Hopkins played and was used sparingly in week 13. Expect his usage to increase each week, barring any setbacks. Hopkins is worthy of a flex play in week 14.

Joe Burrow, QB CIN

Injury: Right Pinky Dislocation

Return to Play: Week 14

Fantasy Impact: Burrow suffered a pinky dislocation during week 13, which swelled up and affected his accuracy. However, he was able to finish the game and play through the injury. I do believe that Burrow will attempt to play through this, however it may be a downtick to the passing attack. You’re still starting Tee Higgins and Ja’Marr Chase weekly, though.

Jalen Hurts, QB PHI

Injury: Ankle Sprain

Return to Play: Week 15

Fantasy Impact: Hurts suffered an ankle sprain that limited him in-game during week 12 and ruled him out for week 13. The expectation is that he is ready to go for week 15 after the bye. Nick Sirianni has already committed to Hurts remaining the starter, so there should be low concern here.

Miles Sanders, RB PHI

Injury: Right Ankle Sprain

Return to Play: Week 15-16

Fantasy Impact: “Sanders suffered yet another lower-body injury and left week X” is something I have stated now three several times this year. The poor guy can’t catch a break. Despite coming off of an injury, the Eagles decided to hand Sanders a career-high 24 carries against the Jets, with his day ending with an ankle sprain. The hope is that this is mild, however he has had multiple ankle sprains in his career now. With the Eagles on bye, we probably will not hear about his status until after week 14, but keep an eye out if you’re banking on him for fantasy playoffs.

Jordan Howard, RB PHI

Injury: Knee Sprain

Return to Play: Week 15

Fantasy Impact: With Sanders banged up again, Howard very well could step into a large workload, if he proves healthy himself. The expectation is that he will be ready to return after the bye week. If not, Boston Scott and Kenneth Gainwell should be on your radar.

Melvin Gordon, RB DEN

Injury: Shoulder, Hip Strain

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: It seems that Denver is optimistic that Gordon will be able to return for week 14, to the dismay of the Javonte Williams fans (myself included). Maybe this is still a turning of the tide, but Gordon will likely remain a thorn in the side of those banking on Javonte down the stretch.

Logan Thomas, TE WAS

Injury: MCL Sprain+

Return to Play: TBD

Fantasy Impact: Initial on-field and locker room testing revealed fears that Thomas tore his ACL, but further imaging gave better news than that (at least for now). My best guess here is that he suffered a sprained ACL without a tear, along with a bone bruise that possibly gave them a false positive Lachman’s on the field. There is still risk that he suffered a partial tear and Washington is simply seeking secondary consult before determining a course of action. As of right now, I would plan to be without Thomas for the remainder of the fantasy season, as even a moderate MCL sprain could cost him three-four games and he would not be as effective as typical upon return.

Corey Davis, WR NYJ

Injury: Core Surgery (Sports Hernia)

Return to Play: Season-Ending

Fantasy Impact: Davis re-injured his prior groin strain and will have season-ending sports hernia surgery in order to repair and prepare for 2022. He may be an intriguing acquire for cheap.

Jaylen Waddle, WR MIA

Injury: Left Knee/Hip

Return to Play: Week 15-16

Fantasy Impact: Waddle suffered a left lower leg injury while being tackled and twisted awkwardly. He limped to the sideline and then to the locker room before being ruled out. These can often be back or hip injuries due to the awkward twisting with compression while being tackled, but early reporting indicates it is not expected to be a major injury. Decent chance he is available after the bye week.

Chris Godwin, WR TB

Injury: Groin Strain

Return to Play: Week 14

Fantasy Impact: Godwin suffered a minor groin injury, though he only missed a few snaps then returned. It may have just been cramping, but monitor practice reports.

Kenny Golladay, WR NYG

Injury: Rib Sprain

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: Golladay suffered a rib sprain during week 13, but thankfully fractures were ruled out. These are typically pain tolerance, though often cost at least one game while recovering. There is a chance he is able to play week 14, but monitor practice reports.

It also may not matter with Mike Glennon (concussion) and Daniel Jones (neck strain) likely out, leaving Jake Fromm to lead the passing attack. Avoid.

Kadarius Toney, WR NYG

Injury: Quadriceps Strain

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: Toney suffered a quadriceps strain and was ruled out from week 13. I believe it will take him another one-two weeks to return and be effective, but monitor practice reports.

Kenyan Drake, RB LVR

Injury: Right Ankle Fracture

Return to Play: Season-Ending

Fantasy Impact: Drake suffered an unfortunate season-ending ankle fracture. He had suffered a prior left ankle fracture/dislocation while at Alabama in 2014. If you have not seen his post directed towards the NFL, I think it is quite an interesting and eye-opening one.

Players on IR

AJ Brown, WR TEN

Injury: Chest Injury

Return to Play: Week 16-17

Fantasy Impact: Brown reportedly does not have fractured ribs, but was slated to undergo further tests to determine any cartilage damage. He was then placed on IR, meaning he must miss at least three games. With a week 13 bye, the earliest Brown can return is week 16. The downside is, he will be difficult to trust if he returns in the fantasy playoffs.

Chase Edmonds, RB ARI

Injury: High Ankle Sprain

Return to Play: Week 14-15

Fantasy Impact: Edmonds suffered a high ankle sprain that knocked him out of week nine early. I expect this to be a 4-6 week timeline as it sounds to be a higher grade sprain. Decent chance he is able to return week 14. Uptick to James Conner (and consider adding Eno Benjamin if he is out there). Monitor practice reports.

Michael Carter, RB NYJ

Injury: High Ankle Sprain, IR

Return to Play: Week 15-17

Fantasy Impact: Carter was placed on IR for his high ankle sprain, meaning he must miss at least three games. The earliest he can return is week 15, however it may require more time.

If you have any questions on these players or any other players who I did not discuss, please ask in the comments. Good luck in week two!

Dynasty Injury Report: Week 13
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