News and Notes 11-22-11


*-Kyle Orton was waived by the Denver Broncos today. It will be very interesting to see if any team will claim him off waivers. Kansas City, Houston, Indianapolis, and Chicago, are just 4 teams who could be interested and there might be more. Any team claiming him will have to pick up the remainder of his salary for the season, so there's a chance he goes unclaimed, whereby Denver's on the hook for the rest of his salary and Orton is free to sign with anyone.

*-Chicago may be interested in Orton now that Jay Cutler is likely to miss the rest of the season with a fractured thumb injury. The only other option for them is to go with Caleb Hanie.

*-Houston could be interested as they are looking at starting Matt Leinart the rest of the regular season with Matt Schaub unlikely to return in the next 6 weeks with his foot injury. Schaub is still getting opinions on his injury and whether he'll be able to come back some time this season or need surgery which would cause him to miss up to 10 months.

*-Kansas City could be interested after watching Tyler Palko look like a guy who clearly lacks the arm strength to be a starting caliber NFL QB. The Chiefs placed Matt Cassel on injured reserve earlier today with his hand injury.

*-Matt Hasselbeck should be okay to start this week after suffering an elbow injury last week. But after Jake Locker came in and performed well, Hasselbeck owners would be smart to acquire Locker as Hasselbeck's leash just got shorter.

*-Michael Vick is hoping to be able to practice some this week. It's really 50/50 as to whether he'll play this week or not. If he doesn't, Vince Young would start again.

*-Ben Roethlisberger is fully expected to be fine to start this week despite having a broken thumb. But maybe we'll see more of a rushing attack this week to not aggravate it?

*-No word yet on whether Kevin Kolb will be able to play this week for the Cardinals or not. If he can't, John Skelton would start again in his place despite his horrible showing week 11.

*-Colt McCoy suffered a shoulder injury week 11 but he is expected to be fine to start.

Running Backs

*-Adrian Peterson suffered a high ankle sprain and he is very unlikely to play week 12. Expect Toby Gerhart to start in his place and know that while Peterson hasn't been ruled out for week 12 yet, it's likely he not only misses week 12, but week 13 as well as this is usually at least a 2 week injury.

*-Fred Jackson suffered a calf injury week 11 and his status for week 12 is very uncertain. If Jackson can't play, C.J. Spiller would get a chance to start and be the primary RB, although he'd likely share some carries with rookie Johnny White. Spiller makes a smart handcuff for those have Jackson.

*-James Starks is very questionable for Thanksgiving Day because of sprained knee and ankle injuries suffered week 11. While these must have been very minor sprains, it's hard to imagine he'll be active on such a short week.

*-Jahvid Best hasn't been medically cleared yet to return to practices from his concussion and he won't play Thanksgiving Day. Kevin Smith looked really good week 11 and is the top free agent acquisition for this week. Smith will be the primary RB for the Lions going forward as he already knows the offense from his time with the Lions last year and he offers a more physical style as runner than Maurice Morris. Morris becomes a change of pace and 3rd down RB.

*-Darren McFadden is not expected to play this week. After two great performances by Michael Bush in the last 2 weeks the Raiders say they will wait until McFadden is fully recovered from his foot sprain before bringing him back. Expect Bush to be the feature RB again this week. His backup is likely to be Marcel Reece as Taiwan Jones suffered a hamstring injury week 11 and likely won't be able to play this week.

*-Peyton Hillis has again already been ruled OUT by the Cleveland Browns for week 12. Guess they really want to make sure that hamstring is completely healed up before bringing him back for games. With Montario Hardesty still uncertain to play because of his calf injury, it's likely Chris Ogbonnaya will be the feature RB for the Browns again this week.

*-LaDainian Tomlinson reportedly suffered a setback in his recovery from a knee sprain and is now unlikely to play week 12. Joe McKnight will handle his role again and be next in line behind Shonn Greene. Greene has a minor ribs injury but is fully expected to start this week. But if he remains ineffective don't be surprised if the Jets turn to McKnight as he adds an element of explosiveness Greene clearly lacks.

*-The Giants aren't so sure Ahmad Bradshaw will be able to return this week. It was widely speculated last week that Bradshaw would return from his foot injury this week, but it's not a sure thing. Consider Bradshaw very questionable and at best to be in a split situation with Brandon Jacobs. If Bradshaw doesn't play, Jacobs would be the primary RB again. Normally D.J. Ware would be the backup to Jacobs in this case but ware suffered a concussion week 11 and is likely to miss week 12. Rookie Da'Rel Scott would be Jacobs's backup this week if Bradshaw can't play.

*-No word on whether the bye week has allowed Joseph Addai enough time to heal up his lingering hamstring injury. While the matchup is good against Carolina this week, it's tough to put your trust in any of the Colts RB's given the uncertainty around Addai. If Addai plays, he likely will be the primary RB. If he doesn't, it likely would be Donald Brown. But who really knows?

*-Washington waived Tashard Choice today and promoted Evan Royster to their active roster. Royster was supposed to possibly complete for the starting job back in training camp but back then, the Redskins looked to be stacked at the position. Choice could end up somewhere but the only place I can see him having much chance for any value might be Cleveland. And that's just a guess.

Wide Receivers

*-Greg Jennings is expected to be okay for Thanksgiving Day despite suffering a bruised knee injury week 11. Jennings may be limited some though.

*-Calvin Johnson will be fine for Thanksgiving Day despite missing practice today. The Lions are just resting Megatron and his minor ankle injury.

*-It's expected that Miles Austin will miss Thanksgiving Day's game with his hamstring injury. He may have a chance to return next week though.

*-Houston fully expects to have Andre Johnson back this week barring setbacks in practice. Johnson hasn't played since week 7 and his return would certainly help Matt Leinart have fantasy value.

*-Darrius Heyward-Bey suffered both a spine injury and a concussion week 11. He is very doubtful to play week 12.

*-DeSean Jackson suffered a bruised foot injury week 11 but it's considered minor and he should be fine for this week.

*-No word yet on whether Jeremy Maclin will be okay for the Eagles though. If he can't play, Riley Cooper would again start in his place.

*-Also no word on whether Atlanta's Julio Jones or Cincinnati's A.J. Green will be able to play this week either.

*-Buffalo placed Donald Jones on injured reserve today after he suffered another ankle injury week 11. His season is done. The Bills signed Derek Hagan to take his spot.

Tight Ends

*-The Colts haven't ruled Dallas Clark out for week 12 yet but it's expected that he will miss at least one more game, if not more, with his leg injury. I expect Jacob Tamme to be the starting TE for the Colts.

*-Lance Kendricks reportedly suffered a mild concussion and his status for week 12 is unsure.

*-Jake Ballard is expected to be fine for week 12 despite an elbow injury suffered week 11.

*-Kyle Rudolph suffered a bruised quad week 11 but he is tentatively expected to be okay for week 12.


*-No word yet on whether Miami will have Dan Carpenter available for week 12 or not. Carpenter suffered a groin injury last Friday and so the Dolphins signed Shayne Graham to kick for them week 11. I expect with a short week, Graham is likely to stick with Miami as their kicker this week on Thanksgiving Day when they face Dallas.