Fantasy Football Injury Updates: Justin Fields, A.J. Brown, CeeDee Lamb (2021 Fantasy Football)
Thanksgiving is this week, with six teams having to have a quick turnaround for games on Thursday. That means that any injuries those six teams endured in Week 11 will loom large in a short week. The six teams playing on Thanksgiving are the Dallas Cowboys, the Las Vegas Raiders, the Chicago Bears, the Detroit Lions, the Buffalo Bills, and the New Orleans Saints. After another weird slate of games in Week 11, here are the notable injuries that took place, and who could be affected by the mentioned injuries in fantasy football.
It was an ugly loss for the Chicago Bears in a game where they faced a Baltimore Ravens team that was without Lamar Jackson. While the Ravens were without their starting quarterback for the entire game, the Bears would lose Justin Fields in the second half. Fields suffered what was described as a ribs injury after taking a hit on the sideline on a third-down scramble. Andy Dalton would replace Fields for the rest of the game, leading the Bears to a late-game lead, only for Tyler Huntley to lead the Ravens on a game-winning drive with under 30 seconds remaining. Dalton would be slated to start for the Bears on Thanksgiving if Fields is unable to make enough progress in the next few days.
In the Thursday night game, the Atlanta Falcons were unable to do much of anything against a streaking New England Patriots defense. The Falcons had 165 yards of total offense as Matt Ryan was trying to create something out of nothing for Atlanta. During a drive in the second half, Ryan would be sacked, having his foot twisted awkwardly into the turf. Ryan was grimacing after the play and the Falcons would insert Josh Rosen and Feleipe Franks, with all three quarterbacks throwing four interceptions combined. Arthur Smith has been vague on his update for Ryan as the veteran quarterback deals with a foot/toe injury. We would likely see Rosen draw the start for the Falcons in Week 12 against the Jacksonville Jaguars if Ryan is forced to sit out.
The Dallas Cowboys got jumped on early in their showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 11. Ezekiel Elliott was expected to be a marquee piece if the Cowboys offense could take advantage of a mediocre Chiefs run defense, but Dallas was unable to get much of anything going. After catching a pass in the first half, Elliott waved toward the sideline for Tony Pollard to come in due to his ankle being twisted awkwardly. Elliott would return to the game,
Michael Carter has been getting more run in the starting offense of the New York Jets in recent weeks, taking advantage of the increased opportunities. The rookie rusher has been especially effective in the passing game as a security blanket for the multiple quarterbacks that the Jets have deployed over the past month. In New York’s loss to the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, Carter made an early exit with an ankle injury. Carter would be unable to return to the game, allowing Ty Johnson and Tevin Coleman to share the backfield work for the majority of the second half. If Carter misses any time, Johnson would seemingly have more value in PPR leagues.
The Tennessee Titans have been battling a myriad of injuries all season and A.J. Brown is dealing with a new injury after Sunday’s loss to the Houston Texans. Brown sustained a chest injury in the first half and would be able to tough it through in the second half. The physical wideout would be limited to zero receptions in the fourth quarter as the other wide receivers on the Titans got more looks. It remains to be seen what the severity of Brown’s injury is, but the Titans can’t afford many more injuries on offense with Derrick Henry and Julio Jones already out.
What an ugly game it was for the Cowboys against the Chiefs. Dallas had trouble getting anything going through the air, and it didn’t help that CeeDee Lamb left in the first half with a head injury. Lamb suffered a concussion on a play before halftime where Dak Prescott threw an interception on a pass intended for Lamb. The second-year wide receiver would attempt to prevent the interception, causing him to hit his head hard on the ground. After being absent from the sideline to start the second half, it was revealed that Lamb would be out for the rest of the game with a concussion. With Amari Cooper already out with COVID-19, the Cowboys could also be without Lamb on Thanksgiving versus the Las Vegas Raiders. Cedrick Wilson and Dalton Schultz would likely see the biggest boosts in usage if Lamb is out on Thursday.
Jarvis Landry was able to be left off of the injury report entering Week 11 after overcoming a knee injury that has bothered him in recent weeks. However, after scoring a rushing touchdown and catching four passes, Landry sustained a knee injury that forced him to exit the game early. Following Cleveland’s win over the Detroit Lions, Kevin Stefanski shared that Landry re-aggravated his previous knee injury on Sunday. Provided that, Landry could be set to miss some time for the Browns. Ahead of a pivotal game against the Ravens in Week 12, Cleveland is hoping that Donovan Peoples-Jones can return to give them some aid at wide receiver.
Can the Browns please allow Baker Mayfield to heal his injuries? Mayfield is battling a partially torn labrum, a knee contusion, and a foot injury that seemingly caused him issues in Week 11 against the Lions. Mayfield suffered the knee contusion in Week 10 and would be able to show enough in practice during the week to suit up this week. Stefanski iterated that Mayfield will continue to battle through his injuries as Mayfield refused to speak to the media after Sunday’s win. Given his piling injuries, Mayfield was likely undergoing medical treatment, causing him to forego his opportunity to speak to the media. It appears the Browns will roll out a hobbled Mayfield in Week 12 against a Ravens team that plays physical defense.
Kyler Murray missed his third consecutive game for the Arizona Cardinals in Week 11, but his absence hasn’t seemed to matter much. The Cardinals have gone 2-1 in his three missed games, including a 10-point win over the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. Murray is dealing with an ankle injury that Arizona is being cautious with as they prepare for a playoff berth this season. Colt McCoy has been filling in for Murray, doing an admirable job of keeping the offense afloat in recent weeks. Seeing that the Cardinals have a bye week in Week 12, we could see Murray make his awaited return in Week 13 against the Bears.
Another member of the Cardinals battling an injury is DeAndre Hopkins. The All-Pro wideout is battling a hamstring injury that has hindered him in recent weeks. Hopkins was unable to suit up in Week 11, making it three weeks since he’s been in action. Arizona is also taking a cautious approach with Hopkins, allowing him to get healthy before they insert him back into the offense. Once again, the Cardinals have a bye week in Week 12, so we could possibly expect Murray and Hopkins to return to Arizona’s offense in Week 13.