Julian Edelman - WR - New England Patriots
New England Patriots WR Julian Edelman played in just 45 of the 74 offensive snaps Sunday, Oct. 26. He played in 45 of the team's first 52 snaps, but was apparently benched. The team didn't announce an injury, but he had two drops.
Huddle Up: Edelman's targets (13) and receptions (5) have taken a noticeable dip over the last 2 games -- coinciding with increased work for WR Brandon LaFell (16 targets-15 cstches) and TE Rob Gronkowski (19-14) -- and his fantasy owners should be a little concerned. He does play for the chameleon-like Patriots, though, so Edelman could have 15 targets and 12 receptions this coming Sunday.
Nick Fairley - DT - Detroit Lions
Detroit Lions DT Nick Fairley (knee) injured his medial collateral ligament and posterior cruciate ligament in Week 8, according to a source. The team hopes he will be able to return in four or five weeks.
Huddle Up: Fairley is a member of the DT rotation on one of the league's top defenses so we'll have to see if there's any kind of dropoff in the coming weeks. At least the Lions have the upcoming bye week to get a Plan B in place.
Stepfan Taylor - RB - Arizona Cardinals
Arizona Cardinals RB Stepfan Taylor (calf) could miss a significant amount of time because of a calf injury he suffered in Week 8, according to head coach Bruce Arians.
Huddle Up: Taylor, who scored a pair of TDs in Week 7, is the backup/handcuff behind Andre Ellington, but that role could shift to unknowns Robert Hughes or Marion Grice for the next month or so unless the Cards decide to sign a more experienced back.
Pierre Thomas - RB - New Orleans Saints
New Orleans Saints RB Pierre Thomas (rib, shoulder) likely would not have been able to participate in practice Monday, Oct. 27 had the team worked out Monday.
Huddle Up: With the Saints playing on Thursday in Week 9, it's going to be that much harder for Thomas to get back on the field. Meanwhile, Mark Ingram and Tarvaris Cadet were quite effective in shouldering the RB duties Sunday night so there's no need for New Orleans to rush Thomas back before he's ready.
Rashad Jennings - RB - New York Giants
New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (knee) is not ruling out the possibility of playing in Week 9 but will not return until he is ready. Jennings did not run during the bye week and was only able to do some light jogging Monday, Oct. 27.
Huddle Up: Jennings has been shooting for a Week 9 return, but he's obviously going to have to show some significant strides in practice this week. We'll revisit the situation when the Giants' begin practice Wednesday.
Robert Griffin III - QB - Washington Redskins
Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) has been declared inactive for the team's Week 8 game against the Dallas Cowboys.
Huddle Up: RGIII's return isn't too much farther down the line, but it won't come tonight as he'll miss his 6th straight game. Colt McCoy get the start -- his 22nd since entering the league in 2010 and first since 2011.
Michael Vick - QB - New York Jets
New York Jets QB Michael Vick will start this week against the Kansas City Chiefs, according to head coach Rex Ryan.
Huddle Up: It doesn't come as much surprise after Geno Smith's performance and the Jets 1-7 record. While Vick hasn't been much better this year, his ability to put up rushing numbers gives him much more fantasy value than Smith. However, his turnovers makes him only a QB2 right now.
Mike Glennon - QB - Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Mike Glennon will remain the starting job even though head coach Lovie Smith said the team has two quarterbacks capable for starting.
Huddle Up: Glennon has played decent, even though the Bucs aren't winning. However, there's a chance we see Josh McCown again at some point this season. Either way, Glennon is nothing more than a middling QB2.
Stedman Bailey - WR - St. Louis Rams
St. Louis Rams WR Stedman Bailey is expected to join the starting lineup with WR Brian Quick (shoulder) out for the season.
Huddle Up: With Brian Quick lost for the season Bailey will start opposite Kenny Britt. He's worth a flier in deeper leagues.
Alex Smith - QB - Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City Chiefs QB Alex Smith (shoulder) is expected to play in Week 9 even with a sprained throwing shoulder.
Huddle Up: Smith injured his shoulder last week and the Chiefs went to a conservative gameplan against the Rams. Expect more of the same on Sunday versus the Jets if Smith isn't 100 percent.
DeAngelo Williams - RB - Carolina Panthers
Carolina Panthers RB DeAngelo Williams (ankle) is expected to play in Week 9, according to head coach Ron Rivera.
Huddle Up: Williams and Jonathan Stewart will split touches against the Saints. While it's a good matchup, neither is an appealing fantasy option this week.
Brian Quick - WR - St. Louis Rams
St. Louis Rams WR Brian Quick (shoulder) is likely out for the rest of the season with a dislocated shoulder and torn rotator cuff.
Huddle Up: It's a big blow for the Rams offense. Quick was in the midst of a breakout season with 25 receptions for 375 yards and three touchdowns. Kenny Britt and Stedman Bailey will now be the Rams top two receivers with Quick out. Bailey is a guy to keep an eye on.
Blake Bortles - QB - Jacksonville Jaguars
Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles, who had two passes intercepted and returned for touchdowns Sunday, Oct. 26 against the Miami Dolphins, leads the NFL with four interceptions returned for a TD.
Huddle Up: Bortles is making a run at Peyton Manning's rookie record for interceptions, and he's having a Matt Schaub-like season in regards to pick-sixes. The Jags, of course, would prefer he turns out more like Manning than Schaub.
Geno Smith - QB - New York Jets
Updating a previous report, New York Jets QB Geno Smith (shoulder) had X-rays on his right shoulder Sunday, Oct. 27, after the Week 8 game against the Buffalo Bills.
Huddle Up: Regardless of whether or not it was a shoulder injury that ultimately landed Smith on the bench Sunday he certainly played his way out of the lineup with multiple first-quarter turnovers. The shoulder issue might be legit, or it could very well be the Jets' way of cushioning the blow as Smith gets benched for Michael Vick.
Aaron Rodgers - QB - Green Bay Packers
Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers (hamstring) was lifted late in the fourth quarter of the Week 8 game against the New Orleans Saints with the game out of hand.
Huddle Up: Rodgers appeared to injure his hamstring in the second half, but he did rush for a touchdown after the apparent injury. With the Packers getting steamrolled there was no need for them to put their franchise quarterback at further risk of injury. The Packers have a bye in Week 9 so Rodgers should have ample opportunity to heal before the team returns to action.
Mark Ingram - RB - New Orleans Saints
New Orleans Saints RB Mark Ingram carried 23 times for a career-high 168 yards and a touchdown in the Week 8 game against the Green Bay Packers.
Huddle Up: Ingram benefitted from both Khiry Robinson and Pierre Thomas being out of the lineup as well as a game in which the Saints took a lead and were able to run clock by running the ball. While Ingram has been effective all season long, once the other Saints backs return it will likely be a frustrating hydra-head of a fantasy backfield.
Ben Roethlisberger - QB - Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger completed 40 of his 49 pass attempts for 522 yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions in the Week 8 game against the Indianapolis Colts. His passing yardage and touchdowns were each franchise records, as he racked up his 100th victory in his 150th NFL start. In fact, Roethlisberger's yardage total was the fourth highest in NFL history. Roethlisberger is now 18-1 at home in the month of October.
Huddle Up: Roethlisberger shredded a Colts defense fresh off a shutout of the Bengals, one that ranked highly across the board--especially in defending the pass. His passing prowess kept Antonio Brown atop the receiver rankings, reinforced Martavis Bryant as an up-and-coming star, and even returned tight end Heath Miller to fantasy relevancy. And he did it all while dresses like a bumblebee for Halloween.
Heath Miller - TE - Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh Steelers TE Heath Miller posted seven receptions for 112 yards and a touchdown in the Week 8 game against the Indianapolis Colts. Miller joins former WRs John Stallworth and Hines Ward as the only players in team history with 500 receptions.
Huddle Up: Miller has never been an elite fantasy tight end, but he's been a reasonably consistent contributor for much of his career. This season he's been off to a bit of a slow start, but this week reminded everyone he's still capable of helping a fantasy squad if you're fortunate enough to plug him in at the right time.
Bernard Pierce - RB - Baltimore Ravens
Baltimore Ravens RB Bernard Pierce was a healthy inactive in Week 8 against the Cincinnati Bengals. Head coach John Harbaugh explained Sunday, Oct. 27, that he felt others gave the team a better chance to win. 'We're just doing what we try to do as far as our personnel and getting guys up that we felt gave us the best chance to win the game,' Harbaugh said. 'We were jammed up. We did what we thought we had to do, and it worked out because our other backs stayed healthy.'
Huddle Up: Kudos to Harbaugh for finally figuring out--or at least finally admitting--what most of the rest of the football world already knew: Pierce is ordinary, and a thunder/lightning tandem of Justin Forsett and rookie Lorenzo Taliaferro is Baltimore's best bet. Going forward look for Forsett to be the lead dog in this committee and handle most of the passing game work while Taliaferro gets the bulk of the carries at the goal line.
Donte Moncrief - WR - Indianapolis Colts
Indianapolis Colts WR Donte Moncrief posted seven catches for 113 yards and a touchdown in the Week 8 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Huddle Up: Moncrief had been working his way into the Colts receiver rotation over the past few weeks, and he capitalized on Reggie Wayne's absence and a shootout between Andrew Luck and Ben Roethlisberger to burst onto the national scene. So long as Wayne remains sidelined Moncrief will run as Indy's WR2 opposite TY Hilton, giving the Colts a solid young receiving corps for Luck for the foreseeable future.
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