Fantasy Football Week 8 Injury Report: Johnson, Westbrook, Wayne and More

Eric StashinSenior Writer IOctober 29, 2009

PITTSBURGH - JANUARY 18:   oe Flacco #5 of the Baltimore Ravens looks on against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the AFC Championship game on January 18, 2009 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Steelers won 23-14.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

The NFL released the early Week Eight injury report yesterday, so let’s take a look at which players are on it that fantasy owners need to be concerned about (and should quickly grab a replacement) and who you can safely leave in your line-up:

Joe Flacco practiced in full despite an ankle injury.
There was little concern coming out of a bye week after rolling his ankle in Week Six.  He is going to be on the field this Sunday and is a must-use in all formats.

Andre Johnson did not practice due to a bruised lung.
He’s saying he’s going to play, as per Nick Scurfield of www.houstontexans.com on Twitter (click here to view).  We all know he’s a must-use if in the line-up and for now, there’s no reason to think he won’t suit up.

Jamal Lewis and Derek Anderson both practiced in full.
Lewis (wrist) and Anderson (hip) are two of the key figures in one of the worst offenses in the league.  Both could conceivably lose their starting jobs at any time, so their health isn’t the only concern for fantasy owners.  They are low-end options in deeper leagues when healthy and nothing more.

Matt Hasselbeck did not practice due to a rib injury.
Coach Jim Mora was quoted in the Seattle Times (click here for the full article) as saying, “it is not anything that will keep him from playing Sunday at full strength.” 

He was ranked as the 18th QB on our initial Top 25 rankings (click here to view), so this news does little to affect his ranking.  He’s only usable in two-quarterback formats or as a bye week alternative.

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Calvin Johnson did not practice due to a knee injury.

He has yet to practice this week after missing Week Six and having last week’s bye to rest.  That cannot make owners very optimistic, though there apparently is still a chance that he finds his way onto the field. 

We’ll have to monitor this as the week progresses, but owners certainly want to be prepared with a suitable alternative just in case.

Matthew Stafford was limited in practice due to a knee injury.
He’s no guarantee to return to the line-up, but he clearly is progressing.  He missed Weeks Five and Six due to the injury and even with a promising match-up against the Rams this week, he’s going to be risky if he is able to suit up.  I wouldn’t put much faith in him.

Bernard Berrian did not practice due to a hamstring injury.
The injury forced him out of action this past week so his inability to practice has got to make owners a bit nervous.  I’m guessing that he’s not going to be able to suit up, but even if he does he no longer is the top option for Brett Favre.  I wouldn’t plan on using him.

Jermichael Finley did not practice due to a knee injury.
He has become a hot sleeper tight end option, but he is highly questionable for the upcoming week.  With the tight end position tough to predict as it is, he’s not worth betting on with the potential of him not playing hanging over him.

Aaron Rodgers was limited in practice due to a foot injury.
This is the second consecutive week he’s been on the injury report, but there is no chance of him not playing against the Vikings.

Donald Brown did not practice due to a shoulder injury.
He’s not expected to play in the upcoming week, helping the value for Joseph Addai.  If you are in a deeper format and planned on using him, look elsewhere.

Anthony Gonzalez did not practice.
The wait to see when he finally returns to the line-up drags on.  The longer it takes him to practice, the more unlikely it is that he’ll be in the line-up in the coming week.  Maybe Week Nine?

Reggie Wayne did not practice due to a groin injury.
At this point the talk is that the injury is not going to keep him out this week, but time will tell.  I’d make sure I have a suitable replacement on the bench, just in case, but anticipate being able to use him.

Jerricho Cotchery was limited in practice due to a hamstring injury.
After missing the past two games Cotchery was happy with how he felt, with Rich Cimini of The New York Daily News (click here  for the article) saying he “was pleased with the results, so much so that he declared himself ready to face the Dolphins on Sunday.”  We’ll see what happens as the week moves on, but this is certainly promising news.

Jonathan Stewart did not participate in practice due to an Achilles injury.
This is nothing to be concerned about for Stewart, who is fully expected to play on Sunday.

Muhsin Muhammad did not participate in practice due to a knee injury.
He’s a low-end option to begin with, so his absence shouldn’t cause too many issues for fantasy owners.  If you are desperate to use him, monitor the news all week, but you’d probably be better off finding an alternative.

Anquan Boldin and Steve Breaston were both limited in practice.
This seems to be the trend with these two, so until something else comes to light, I’d move forward assuming that they will be in the line-up this week.

Brian Westbrook did not practice due to a concussion.
The concussion was said to be a serious one, so while the Eagles are trying to convince people he may play this week, I’m just not buying it.  I’d expect him to be out at least this week and possibly could be out for a few games depending on how he reacts.  Make sure you get yourself a suitable replacement.

DeSean Jackson did not practice due to a foot injury.
He was actually injured in the first half of Monday’s game, yet managed to return to the line-up.  At this point there is no reason to think that he’s not going to play on Sunday.

What are your thoughts on the injury news?  Which do you find most troubling?  Who are you not concerned about?

Need more help in trying to decide who to start this week, check out our weekly rankings by clicking here .

This article is also featured on www.rotoprofessor.com/football

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