Patrick Willis - LB - San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers LB Patrick Willis (toe) is unlikely to play against the Denver Broncos Sunday, Oct. 19, according to a source. Willis sprained his toe Monday, Oct. 13, against the St. Louis Rams.
Huddle Up: Just another blow for the already short-handed Niners defense, but they've weathered the storm so far, ranking as the ninth best fantasy D and sixth-best overall D, in terms of total yards allowed. Third-round pick Chris Borland will likely get the starting call if Willis can't go Sunday night in the Mile High City.
Zac Stacy - RB - St. Louis Rams
St. Louis Rams RBs Zac Stacy, Benny Cunningham and Tre Mason may continue to head a three-man rotation in the backfield, according to head coach Jeff Fisher.
Huddle Up: Translation: Not good news at all for fantasy GMs, especially Stacy owners. In Monday night's loss to the Niners, Stacy got 10 touches, Cunningham received 9 and Mason had 6, but the latter gained the most total yards out of the trio with 52, while Cunningham had a rushing TD. It might be best to steer clear until there's some clarity.
Vincent Jackson - WR - Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Vincent Jackson is fifth among wide receivers in targets (60) but has converted just 25 of them into catches.
Huddle Up: The Bucs' downer of a season certainly applies to V-Jax, who's tied for 30th among fantasy wideouts with 46 points in standard-scoring leagues. At least, though, he's still getting the looks, and maybe the passing offense can work out some of the kinks during the bye this week.
Kevin Ogletree - WR - Free Agent
The New York Giants are signing free-agent WR Kevin Ogletree (Lions) Tuesday, Oct. 14, according to a source.
Huddle Up: Ogletree, best remembered for his 11-catch, 114-yard, 2-TD performance in the Cowboys' 2012 season opener, is being added strictly for depth purposes behind Rueben Randle, Odell Beckham Jr., Preston Parker and Corey Washington.
Eric Decker - WR - New York Jets
New York Jets WR Eric Decker (hamstring) was limited in practice Tuesday, Oct. 14.
Huddle Up: Nothing really new here as the Jets' receiving yardage leader should be good to go Thursday night in Foxborough.
Danny Trevathan - LB - Denver Broncos
The Denver Broncos placed LB Danny Trevathan (knee) on Reserve/Injured Tuesday, Oct. 14, with a designation to return.
Huddle Up: Trevathan's second knee-area bone fracture will cost him 8 weeks this time, and the Broncoss' 2013 leading tackler won't be eligible to return until the team's Week 15 game at San Diego.
Chris Johnson - RB - New York Jets
New York Jets RB Chris Johnson (ankle) was a full participant in practice Tuesday, Oct. 14.
Huddle Up: Since putting up 61 total yards and a TD in Week 4, Johnson has only 33 total yards on 12 touches over the last 2 games as the Jets have been running in place. He shouldn't come anywhere near a starting lineup -- or even a roster in smaller leagues -- until he shows some signs of life.
Tom Brady - QB - New England Patriots
New England Patriots QB Tom Brady (ankle) was limited in practice Tuesday, Oct. 14.
Huddle Up: Brady' ankle injury last week was more serious than most realized, but he appeared to get through Sunday's game OK and should be fine for Week 7 -- even on the short week.
Rob Gronkowski - TE - New England Patriots
New England Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski (knee) is back in full force, according to QB Tom Brady. Gronkowski played limited snaps in the first four weeks while recovering from a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee, but he has emerged in the last few weeks. He had six catches for 100 yards and a touchdown in Week 5 and caught seven passes for 94 yards in Week 6. Gronkowski took some big hits and showed added strength in the game against the Buffalo Bills. "He's a great option out there," Brady said. "So if they don't cover him, he usually gets it. If they put extra guys on him then it frees everybody else up. He's tough to stop. You put a safety on him, he's got size. You put a linebacker on him, he's got speed. He's been that way since he got into the NFL."
Huddle Up: Gronk ranks fourth in TE targets (46) and TD catches (4) among all league TEs and will remain a must-start as long as he keeps getting through games with a semblance of health.
Tre Mason - RB - St. Louis Rams
St. Louis Rams rookie RB Tre Mason was active Monday night for the first game this year as he backed up Zac Stacy and Benny Cunningham.
Huddle Up: The third-round pick actually wound up leading the Rams with 40 rushing yards on 5 carries and adding a 12-yard reception. That performance likely earned Mason a continued share of the workload in St. Louis, but that only makes for a three-headed fantasy mess. Try to avoid all three of the St. Louis backs unless you're out of options.
Victor Cruz - WR - New York Giants
New York Giants WR Victor Cruz (knee) won't ever be the same after his season-ending knee injury, according to Dr. David Chao. "He can return to 100 percent, but it (his knee) is a car in a car accident," said Chao, a former NFL team physician. "Never brand new when fixed." There is no timetable for Cruz's rehab, and there is no prognosis for the rest of his career. His injury could rob him of his explosiveness and change-of-direction ability. A handful of NFL players have returned from this type of injury, but none of them discovered their elite form. A torn patellar tendon can't be fixed arthroscopically, so it needs a massive open procedure that will require lengthy and painful rehab. Cruz will need to rebuild the muscles around the tendon, and it'll likely be 6 months before he can even try to run again.
Huddle Up: Just a crushing turn of developments for the undrafted free agent who took the NFL by storm in 2011 when he debuted with 82 catches for 1,536 yards and 9 TDs. He was off to a 23-337-1 start this season.
Storm Johnson - RB - Jacksonville Jaguars
Jacksonville Jaguars RB Storm Johnson was on a snap count in Week 6 in his first career start. He carried just 10 times, and head coach Gus Bradley said that's exactly what the team had planned for him. Johnson had 21 yards on the ground and also scored a touchdown. "His toughness and things like that were there," Bradley said. "But, there's a couple of areas and just his overall reads and where we actually want the play to hit. He hit it more front side where he could bring it backside, so things like that."
Huddle Up: It's likely the workload will keep increasing for the rookie given the lack of other options in J'ville, but, in truth, it's hard to see any back having much success behind the continued poor run blocking of that offensive line.
Kirk Cousins - QB - Washington Redskins
Washington Redskins QB Kirk Cousins is not in danger of being benched in favor of QB Colt McCoy after the team lost their fourth straight game in Week 6, according to head coach Jay Gruden. Cousins now leads the league with eight interceptions, with seven of them coming in the last three games.
Huddle Up: Cousins has been better in fantasy, ranking sixth with an average of 24.11 fantasy points per game, since replacing the injured RGIII in Week 2 and is a low-end QB1/QB2 in 10- and 12-team leagues despite his struggles.
Preston Parker - WR - New York Giants
New York Giants WRs Rueben Randle and Odell Beckham Jr. are acceptable options to replace WR Victor Cruz (knee), according to head coach Tom Coughlin, with WR Preston Parker in the slot position. The Giants are content in not trading for another receiver from outside the organization. The only other healthy receiver on the current roster is WR Corey Washington.
Huddle Up: Keep an eye on Washington, who was a preseason standout, but the fantasy owners of the top 3 wideouts, particularly Randle's and Beckham's, should see a noticeable uptick in targets.
Greg Little - WR - Free Agent
The Cincinnati Bengals signed free-agent WR Greg Little (Raiders) to an undisclosed deal Tuesday, Oct. 14, according to a league source.
Huddle Up: In definite need of reinforcements at WR, the Bengals have turned to Little, who caught 155 passes from 2011-13 with the AFC North rival Browns but was cut by the Raiders in training camp this summer. He now starts anew as the low man on the depth chart and doesn't have any fantasy value at the moment.
Eddie Royal - WR - San Diego Chargers
San Diego Chargers WR Eddie Royal's (rib) injury isn't considered serious, according to a source. Royal could miss little, if any, time.
Huddle Up: Royal ranks second on the team with 5 TD catches and ranks third in both targets (34) and receptions (22). See what he can do in practice this week.
Marvin Jones - WR - Cincinnati Bengals
Cincinnati Bengals WR Marvin Jones (ankle) was placed on the season-ending injured-reserve list Tuesday, Oct. 14. Jones hasn't played this year and only took part in five practices since training camp. The belief is that Jones broke his other foot trying to overcompensate for his right-ankle injury. Surgery is being discussed as a possibility.
Huddle Up: There will be no payoff for those fantasy owners who had stashed Jones coming off his 51-catch, 10-TD season a year ago. Free-agent Greg Little was signed Tuesday as his replacement.
Tom Brady - QB - New England Patriots
New England Patriots QB Tom Brady (ankle) played Sunday, Oct. 13, through a significant injury, according to two sources. Brady rolled his ankle on the foot of one of his offensive linemen Friday, Oct. 10. Brady required a lot of therapy to be ready to play in Week 6.
Huddle Up: The Patriots are the complete opposite of forthcoming when it comes to injury information, so it's no wonder that after Brady has been on the injury report for the past decade--and played through whatever phantom injury he was listed with--that few took this recent injury seriously. We'll see if he's ready to go this week, but either way you can bet he'll be listed on the injury report as questionable, with limited participation in practice.
Updating previous reports, Dallas Cowboys OT Doug Free (foot) has a fracture in his foot and will likely miss three to four weeks, according to team owner Jerry Jones.
Huddle Up: Free's loss would be a blow to the fantasy fortunes of DeMarco Murray and Tony Romo, though he hasn't officially been ruled out just yet. Jeremy Parnell stepped in against the Seahawks and would continue to hold down Free's spot until he returns.
Knowshon Moreno - RB - Miami Dolphins
Miami Dolphins RB Knowshon Moreno (knee) was placed on Reserve/Injured with a torn anterior cruciate ligament. Moreno only had one carry in the second half of the game Sunday, Oct. 12, but the team didn't offer an explanation that an injury was the cause. Moreno (knee) tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee, which is the same one he tore in 2011.
Huddle Up: Bad news for Moreno, who had just returned from an elbow injury. Lamar Miller stepped up when Moreno is out and will continue to see the bulk of the workload in Miami.
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