News and Notes 9-27-11


*-Michael Vick has a deep bruise on his non-throwing hand. Original reports said it was a break, but and that he'd be out a few weeks, but that was not the case and there's a good chance he'll be able to play this week against San Francisco. He may be held out some in practices but unless I hear otherwise, I am assuming Vick will start week 4.

*-Tony Romo apparently made it thru last night's game without aggravating his rib injury. He'll likely be limited most days in practice this week but should be fine to start this week.

*-Mark Sanchez suffered a broken nose week 3 but it's not going to prevent him from playing this week.

*-Sam Bradford has a sprained toe. He may be limited some in practices but he'll be fine.

*-Indianapolis is likely to use the reported concussion Kerry Collins suffered week 3 as an excuse to sit him on the bench and start Curtis Painter this week. Barring a complete flop by Painter it's likely he'll remain the starter the rest of the season. I say "rest of the season" as Colts owner Jim Irsay has intimated that while they are going to keep Peyton Manning on the active roster for the time being, he isn't expecting Manning to be able to come back and play in 2011. Once the Colts get eliminated from playoff contention, I fully expect for Manning to be shut down the rest of the season. To add depth, they re-signed Dan Orlovsky who was cut back in training camp.

Running Backs

*-Darren McFadden suffered a groin injury week 3. It's believed to be minor though and while he may be limited some in practices this week, or held out altogether a day or two, he is currently expected to be fine for week 4.

*-Arian Foster is expected to be a full go for week 4. Reports are the hamstring injury is behind him now. His expected return pushes Ben Tate back into a complimentary role. No word about Derrick Ward and his ankle injury, but the Texans must feel like Ward is almost ready as they released Steve Slaton today and signed Chris Ogbannaya from their practice squad.

*-Current reports out of San Francisco say that Frank Gore will be okay to play week 4 despite suffering an ankle injury week 3. Gore may be limited in practices though and earlier reports had his status for this week in question so we'll keep an eye on this. If Gore can't go, Kendall Hunter would get the start and split time with Anthony Dixon. Gore owners are strongly encouraged to grab Hunter off waiver wire's as insurance against the annual Gore injury.

*-Ryan Grant had a big game finally but suffered a bruised kidney in the process. Reports about Grant's availability for week 4 are contradictory though as some say he will be fine and others say his status is in question. If he is to miss the game James Starks would be the primary RB and rookie Alex Green would get some work too.

*-Steven Jackson got in some work week 3 and didn't aggravate his quad injury so look for him to be okay for week 4. He may not get a full complement of the carries he normally would, but he'd be the only Rams RB worth considering.

*-Peyton Hillis is expected to be okay for week 4 after missing last week with strep throat. The exact nature of his illness wasn't disclosed until Saturday and according to reports he was pretty sick. But it's expected a week's worth of antibiotics and rest should help him get over it. But Hillis owners would be wise to grab Montario Hardesty after Hardesty looked pretty good as the feature RB for the Browns this past weekend.

*-It's hoped that Beanie Wells will be able to play this week. Wells missed week 3 because of a hamstring strain suffered in practice last week. However, we'll know more later in the week after we get practice reports. Don't be surprised if after an uninspiring performance by both Chester Taylor and Alfonso Smith replacing Wells last week the Cardinals go sign Houston cast-off Steve Slaton. Slaton was rumored to be a RB the Cardinals were interested in during the preseason if he became available.

*-While Felix Jones aggravated his shoulder injury last night, it's not believed to be anything that will prevent him from playing week 4. Jones may miss some practice time though to allow it to heal up as much as it can.

*-Don't be surprised if we start seeing the Patriots use rookie RB Stevan Ridley more often going forward. They'll likely gradually increase his workload to see how he does, but he is clearly a more explosive RB than BenJarvus Green-Ellis and just as big. Lawfirm owners would be smart to grab Ridley for when the eventual changing of the guard happens at some point this season.

Wide Receivers

*-Kenny Britt tore both his ACL and MCL and his season is done. He still holds value in dynasty leagues though as he was on his way to having a breakout season this year and could return to that form next season. Lavelle Hawkins or Damien Williams will start opposite Nate Washington now. If Washington is available on free agent wires he should be snatched up immediately, and for those in deeper leagues, I'd guess Hawkins would be the better pickup than Williams as the Titans have always gushed about Hawkins ability, but it's never carried over onto the field. Maybe that will change. Tennessee auditioned a slew of street free agent WR's today but no signing is imminent.

*-Jeremy Maclin suffered a hamstring injury this past weekend. While it's not as bad as originally thought to be, it still has his week 4 status very uncertain. If I were to guess I'd say Maclin isn't going to play. Jason Avant or Steve Smith would start in his place if Maclin can't play. Teammate Riley Cooper might have been in the mix some, but he suffered a concussion and likely will miss this week.

*-Dez Bryant escaped last night's game without aggravating his quad injury. He should be okay going forward. However it's expected Miles Austin will miss week 4 with his hamstring injury. Dallas has the bye in week 5 and Austin should return week 6.

*-The Giants hope to have Mario Manningham back this week. Manningham was out week 3 with a concussion but it's believed he'll pass all his tests this week and be back on the field.

*-It's unknown if Lee Evans will be held out another week to allow his ankle injury to heal up or not. But rookie Torrey Smith had an outstanding game against the Rams this past week and after it I won't be surprised if the Ravens decide to let Evans have another week off to see if the rookie can have that type of success again. Smith is a prime dynasty league pickup this week and while you can't expect 3 TD's and 100 yards every week from him, he definitely deserves to be stashed on re-draft rosters with needs at WR as well.

*-Cincinnati has said that Jerome Simpson will resume practicing with the team this week and barring any complications from his pot incident last week will be back in the starting lineup. His expected return puts a damper on the potential value of Andre Caldwell for the time being.

*-Sidney Rice came out of his season debut week 3 without aggravating the torn labrum injury in his shoulder. He is expected to be fine to play week 4.

*-Roy Williams apparently aggravated his groin injury this past week and his status for week 4 is in doubt. I wish he'd stop aggravating fantasy owners of Johnny Knox as Williams is taking up valuable playing time from a superior talent.

*-Unknown if a hamstring injury to Redskins WR Anthony Armstrong is severe or not. He suffered it last night and his status for this week is unknown. He's best left on waiver wires and benches anyway.

Tight Ends

*-Antonio Gates' status for week 4 is unknown. Gates missed week 3 with an aggravation of the plantar fasciitis injury in his foot that ended his 2010 season, and it's feared that this will be a lingering problem the rest of the season. Be prepared for Gates to miss a lot of practice time in future weeks and be listed as Questionable on future injury reports. I strongly recommend you have a quality backup TE on your fantasy roster as it is unknown whether Gates will play week 4, or any time soon. If you can find a trade partner who isn't paying attention and just see's Gates' name value, you may be able to swing a good deal for yourself. Those who can't find a trade, look for Randy McMichael to start in Gates' place when Gates can't play.

*-The Jets placed Jeff Cumberland on injured reserve with a torn Achilles tendon. His season is done and the team called up Josh Baker from the practice squad to take his roster spot. There's no fantasy significance here though.

*-Buffalo waived David Martin. He was buried behind emerging Scott Chandler anyway.


*-New Orleans put Garrett Hartley on injured reserve today. Hartley was expected to come back sometime later in the year after his hip injury healed up, but the strong performances turned in by substitute John Kasay made the Saints re-think keeping Hartley on the active roster. Kasay will finish out the year as the Saints kicker.