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Fantasy Football Week 3: Impact of Injuries

Matt SteinCorrespondent IIOctober 9, 2016

Fantasy Football Week 3: Impact of Injuries

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    While Week 2 of the NFL season wasn't as devastating as Week 1 in the injury department, there were still plenty of major injuries to put fantasy owners in difficult positions.

    Whether you're forced to find a replacement for Aaron Hernandez or wondering what to do about Ryan Mathews, this NFL Week 3 injury report is going to give you everything you need to know to be successful this week in fantasy football.

    We'll break down every major injury and let you know the best way to deal with each in your fantasy football league.

Ahmad Bradshaw, RB, New York Giants

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    Ahmad Bradshaw will not be playing Thursday night against the Carolina Panthers, according to Mike Garafolo at USA Today. He injured his neck in the win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and a short week simply hasn't given him the time needed to fully heal.

     

    Impact on Fantasy Football

    For starters, with Bradshaw out Thursday, Andre Brown becomes a must-have off the waiver wire. When Bradshaw went down last week, Brown came in and played very well to the tune of 90 total yards and touchdown.

    This also means that the New York Giants will likely be looking to pass more, meaning Eli Manning and his wide receivers could be in for a huge week.

     

    What To Do If He Is on Your Team

    With the short week, it wasn't much of a surprise that Bradshaw wouldn't be playing. Since the injury isn't overly serious, there is no reason to drop Bradshaw as he'll still be the No. 1 running back once he returns to full health.

Jeremy Maclin, WR, Philadelphia Eagles

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    Jeremy Maclin has been dealing with a hip injury since Week 1 of the NFL season. He was held to only one reception for 23 yards and a touchdown last week against the Baltimore Ravens.

    According to the Philadelphia Eagles' official Twitter account, Maclin didn't practice on Wednesday.

     

    Impact on Fantasy Football

    If Maclin can't play on Sunday or is limited like he was in Week 2, DeSean Jackson and Brent Celek become must-starts for Week 3. The Eagles have shown they are committed to throwing the ball through the first two weeks, and that shouldn't change this upcoming week.

    If Maclin can play and he is at full health, he'll be a legitimate No. 2 receiver for your roster as he is still one of Vick's favorite targets.

     

    What To Do If He Is on Your Team

    Watch practice reports today and tomorrow to see whether or not Maclin has been practicing. As long as he practices, he should be good to play and produce come Sunday.

    However, if he still hasn't practiced by the weekend, then keep Maclin on the bench and reevaluate whether or not Maclin's hip is worth the trouble or if you should start looking for trades.

Hakeem Nicks, WR, New York Giants

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    The New York Giants are keeping Hakeem Nicks out of Thursday night's game. Nicks didn't even travel with the team, according to the official Twitter account of the Giants.

    The short week of practice certainly didn't help Nicks recover from his foot injury, but a Week 4 return is definitely a possibility.

     

    Impact on Fantasy Football

    With Nicks out, the Giants passing attack will feature heavy doses of Victor Cruz, Rueben Randle and Martellus Bennett. 

    The Giants simply can't afford to abandon the pass because Nicks is out. With Eli Manning throwing for over 500 yards last week, Cruz, Randle and Bennett should all be priorities to start this week.

     

    What To Do If He Is on Your Team

    After posting 199 yards and a touchdown in Week 2, Nicks put to rest any doubts that he wasn't going to be a top fantasy producer last week. While him missing one game is certainly disappointing, it isn't worth doing anything drastic.

Aaron Hernandez, TE, New England Patriots

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    Aaron Hernandez left with a low ankle sprain in his Week 2 matchup with the Arizona Cardinals. It looks like this injury will keep Hernandez out between four and six weeks, according to Marc Sessler of NFL.com.

     

    Impact on Fantasy Football

    This is a huge loss to fantasy football and could potentially have a negative effect on the rest of the New England Patriots. When Hernandez left last week's game, the Patriots offense struggled to get things going.

    However, few teams are as good at adjusting as New England is, so don't be surprised if players like Rob Gronkowski, Wes Welker and Brandon Lloyd all have increased production in the next few weeks.

     

    What To Do If He Is on Your Team

    If Hernandez was your No. 1 tight end, then you need to start scouring the waiver wire for a capable replacement. Four to six weeks is a long time in fantasy football, but if you can afford to keep him on your roster, that would be the ideal way to go.

    Once the playoffs roll around, you're going to love the versatility that he brings to the field.

Matt Forte, RB, Chicago Bears

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    First reports of Matt Forte's injury were that it was a high ankle sprain; however, Michael Fabiano of NFL.com reported that head coach Lovie Smith has refuted those reports.

    While this is certainly good news for Forte and the Chicago Bears, the fact that Forte didn't practice on Wednesday (according to Sean Jensen of the Chicago Sun-Times) doesn't bode well for him playing in Week 3.

     

    Impact on Fantasy Football

    After Jay Cutler's awful Week 2 performance against the Green Bay Packers, the Bears should look to attempt a more balanced offense this week against the St. Louis Rams. With Forte unlikely in Week 3, that means backup running back Michael Bush absolutely needs to be starting this week.

    In fact, with Forte being rather prone to injuries these past two seasons, Bush could be a quality start at the flex position for the rest of the season. Don't be surprised to see Bush as one of the top scorers until Forte is 100 percent healthy.

     

    What To Do If He Is on Your Team

    You certainly can't get rid of Forte, but his recent history with injuries should begin to worry you as an owner. There is no way that he'll lose his starting job, but if Bush plays extremely well while filling in for him, the two players could start to split carries.

    If that happens, your stud running back will become a No. 2 fantasy back at best.

Steven Jackson, RB, St. Louis Rams

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    Steven Jackson missed practice on Wednesday with a groin injury, according to Tony Softli of Rams Radio Network. He's currently considered day-to-day for the St. Louis Rams' Week 3 matchup against the Chicago Bears.

     

    Impact on Fantasy Football

    Jackson found himself in Jeff Fisher's doghouse Week 2, and this injury hasn't helped him get out of it. While the Rams can't afford to keep their best offensive player off the field, Daryl Richardson played pretty well in limited time.

    Now, Richardson isn't worth getting picked up off the waiver wire just yet, but if Jackson remains on Fisher's bad side, he could become an interesting option.

     

    What To Do If He Is on Your Team

    With Jackson listed as day-to-day, you'll be forced to keep an eye on him throughout the weekend. It's likely that he'll be able to play, but be wary of relying on him to bring home a victory if he isn't at 100 percent.

Brian Orakpo and Adam Carriker, Defense, Washington Redskins

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    Both Brian Orakpo (left pectoral) and Adam Carriker (torn quad tendon) will miss the rest of the 2012 season. This is a gigantic blow for the Washington Redskins.

     

    Impact on Fantasy Football

    It's unlikely that you were starting Redskins defense in your fantasy league, but with Orakpo, Carriker and Ryan Kerrigan, this unit had potential to be a decent backup this year.

    However, without these two, the Redskins defense is simply worthless in fantasy football.

     

    What To Do If They Are on Your Team

    Drop them and look for a replacement defense. There should be plenty available, and they'll all be better than Washington at this point.

Fred Davis, TE, Washington Redskins

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    After taking a brutal hit against the St. Louis Rams, Fred Davis has since said that he didn't suffer a concussion. He returned to practice on Wednesday, according to Rich Campbell of The Washington Times.

    Everything is currently looking good for Davis to start and play in Week 3.


    Impact on Fantasy Football

    Despite being predicted to have a huge season, Davis has been rather quiet in the first two games. He's only recorded four receptions for 52 yards with zero touchdowns.

    This is certainly surprising and brings up questions about whether or not Robert Griffin III feels confident in Davis' talents.

     

    What To Do If He Is on Your Team

    With Davis likely to play this week, he'll definitely be worth starting. However, if he continues to be a third or fourth option to Griffin, it will be time to be looking for a new starting tight end.

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