Fantasy Football

Week 5 injury review: Moreno out

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Michael Harmon

Mike is a fantasy contributor for FOXSports.com.MORE>>
 
   
 

Between bye weeks, trades and the seemingly never-ending pile of Tweets, texts and emails referencing injuries, fantasy owners have a lot on their plates for Week 5. At some point, you just have to throw up your hands in defeat.

Fantasy owners who made the play for Michael Vick in their leagues continue to bemoan the “Malachi Crunch” (look it up) absorbed by Vick at the goal-line in Week 4. Clearly, Vick is out for this week because of the rib injury sustained during that hit.

I continue to bang the drum and remind fantasy owners and NFL fans about how close Kevin Kolb was to being a hero last week. Had Jason Avant hauled down that last-second heave, the storylines for this week’s game against San Francisco would be much different.

It wasn’t pretty, and some might apply the "Captain Checkdown" moniker to Kolb if his target total to Brent Celek and LeSean McCoy approaches his Week 4 numbers. However, this is a guy that was drafted as a back-end QB1 coming out of camp. Let’s see what he does with all of those playmakers against a desperate San Francisco defense.

I’ll move away from Philadelphia to chronicle the proverbial laundry list of injuries affecting fantasy owners this week. (Don’t worry. I’ll circle back there in a minute.)

One of the top fantasy football superheroes of early 2010 has been Cleveland Browns running back Peyton Hillis. Hillis missed Friday’s practice, but Eric Mangini expressed optimism that his bruising running back will be available for Sunday’s game against Atlanta, per Mary Kay Cabot of The Cleveland Plain Dealer. He was a late addition to the injury report this week. Jerome Harrison would take on a larger role if, in fact, Hillis is limited in any fashion.

Cabot also reports that quarterback Jake Delhomme, who has made progress in his return from a severely sprained ankle, will be a game-time decision.

According to The Indianapolis Star, it appears that Austin Collie’s foot injury will sideline the red zone hero for Sunday’s game against the Chiefs. Collie has been wearing a protective boot on his right foot. Fantasy owners need to check the wire, as former fantasy hero Pierre Garcon is set to return from the hamstring injury that sidelined him the past two weeks.

The Colts added running back Javarris James, a former practice squad player for the Patriots, to the roster on Thursday. As such, it appears that second-year running back Donald Brown will be shut down because of a hamstring injury again.

Last week, fantasy owners were despondent when Willis McGahee shouldered the bulk of the workload against the Steelers. Ray Rice was limited during the game because of a deep bruise. He’s ready to take on a full workload this week against the Broncos after completing the practice slate, per The Baltimore Sun.

The Denver Post reports that Broncos tailback Knowshon Moreno will not play in Sunday’s game against the Ravens. Josh McDaniels announced that Moreno’s hamstring has not yet healed sufficiently. As a result, Kyle Orton will throw the ball a lot. Correll Buckhalter and Laurence Maroney will attempt to run in a split workload against Haloti Ngata and that dominant Baltimore run defense.

LeSean McCoy did not practice Thursday, but returned to the practice field on Friday. McCoy told reporters that he would be ready to go for Sunday night at San Francisco, adding that he’d played a full half last week with the injury. He still represents a risk, and the time of the game certainly comes into play here. Make the insurance pickup of Mike Bell, just in case things shift down on Sunday.

Jay Cutler of the Bears has been ruled “Out” for Sunday’s game against Carolina because of the concussion sustained against New York in Week 4.

The beleaguered Chicago offensive line remains without tackle Chris Williams, who is still sidelined because of a hamstring injury.

The New York Post reports that Giants running back Ahmad Bradshaw returned to practice and will be available to face the Texans. Bradshaw missed the early part of the practice week because of an ankle injury. I still expect to see some of Brandon Jacobs (six catches and 62 rushing yards with a score in Week 4), particularly in short-yardage instances here.

Wide receiver Steve Smith will miss Sunday’s game against Chicago because of the high-ankle sprain sustained in Week 3. The Panthers take their bye in Week 6, so it’s possible that Smith returns to the field on October 24 against the 49ers. David Gettis and Brandon LaFell will start for Jimmy Clausen. LaFell is a “Hail Mary!” option of the highest order.

McFadden sustained a hamstring injury in Week 4 and will miss Sunday’s game against division rival San Diego. Michael Bush slides back into the top spot this week in his absence. One of this year’s top “sleepers” is set to take his shot against the San Diego run defense.

Dale Robertson of The Houston Chronicle reports that Andre Johnson did not practice on Friday, but is expected to get back into action against the Giants’ pass defense after missing Week 4. Robertson also advises that Mario Williams sustained a groin injury during Thursday’s practice and will be a game-decision. Houston signed former Chicago lineman and sackmaster Mark Anderson earlier this week.

Receiver Jacoby Jones is also working through a calf injury and did not participate in the practice. Jones is a game-time decision as well.

Nick Barnett of the Packers injured his wrist on Sunday against the Lions. No official word has come down about the severity of the injury, but The Detroit Free-Press reports that Mike McCarthy advised that Barnett could miss significant time.

Steve Breaston (knee) and Early Doucet (hernia) are out, opening the door for bigger workloads for Stephen Williams and Max Komar. With Max Hall under center, does this represent the first "Max-to-Max" connection in NFL history.

Detroit tight end Tony Scheffler returned to practice on Friday. Scheffler sustained a concussion in Week 4 and was expected to be deactivated, but this revelation clouds things. Scheffler and Brandon Pettigrew represent strong plays this week against St. Louis, with Pettigrew obviously holding the top stop.

Nate Burleson may return to the field this weekend against the Rams after missing the past two weeks because of an ankle injury. Burleson declared himself ready to go following limited participation in Thursday’s practice. He’s been returned to the waiver wire in most leagues, so he’s a nice speculation pickup for a bigger role upon Matthew Stafford’s return (Week 6?).

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