NFL Quick Hits: Gronk’s status remains in doubt for Sunday

Rob Gronkowski’s fantasy owners need to make other plans for Week 11. Gronkowski, who suffered a chest injury Sunday night that may or may not have been a punctured lung, missed practice again on Thursday. We’ll probably know his status later on Friday, but for now it looks like he won’t play at San Francisco.

On Thursday’s FOX Fantasy Podcast, guest Chad Parsons ( suggested that the effect on the Pats will be simple: No Gronk means a big day for Martellus Bennett. However, since Bennett is owned in 79.6 percent of leagues, he’s probably not accessible to Gronk owners.

One widely available tight end that I keep coming back to is Pittsburgh’s Ladarius Green, who is owned in 11.5 percent of leagues. Green played on just 12 snaps in his 2016 debut last week, catching three passes for 30 yards on four targets. If Green is on the field more against a Browns’ defense that has allowed more receptions to tight ends than anyone else, he could have a very nice day.

If you can’t get Green, alternatives are Richard Rodgers (10.3 percent owned), Vernon Davis (9.8 percent owned) and Lance Kendricks (5.2 percent owned). Rodgers has caught 10 passes in his last two games, but could be impacted by the return of Jared Cook, who has been out since Week 3.

In other news …

Chiefs WR Jeremy Maclin (groin) missed another practice on Thursday, and looks doubtful for Sunday.

Thursday’s Saints-Panthers game featured mostly fantasy disappointment unless you owned Drew Brees or Tim Hightower. The four touchdowns were scored by Jonathan Stewart, Ted Ginn Jr., Brandon Coleman and Coby Fleener. If you started any of those players besides Stewart, give yourself a pat on the back.

Key injuries from Thursday’s game include Saints RB Mark Ingram and Panthers LB Luke Kuechly, both of whom are in the concussion protocol.

From the Seahawks’ website: "Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said earlier this week that while (Thomas) Rawls should ‘play considerably’ on Sunday against the Eagles, the team will also be careful not to overdo it with Rawls after a seven-game absence." I’ve got C.J. Prosise at RB17 for the week, with Rawls at RB34. Expect a somewhat limited workload for Rawls, and keep him benched unless your options are bad.

Remember your byes: The Falcons, Broncos, Jets and Chargers are off this week.

Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald (ankle) practiced fully on Thursday, and is expected to play at Minnesota.

Here’s a complimentary article about new Rams QB Jared Goff. You’re not thinking about using Goff for fantasy purposes, right?

Lions RB Theo Riddick (ankle) was limited in Thursday’s practice, but all seems well. Riddick is in a nice spot against a Jags’ D that has allowed 124 rushing yards per game.

Tom Oates of the Wisconsin State Journal writes here about the Packers’ quest to find offensive balance with RBs James Starks and new arrival Christine Michael. The Pack has a friendly Sunday night matchup against a Redskins’ squad that has given up 4.6 yards per carry on the season, but they’ve often abandoned the run so quickly that it’s difficult to trust either back. I have Starks at RB25, and would avoid Michael at all costs since we don’t know how fast he’ll learn the playbook.

Bears RB Jordan Howard admitted that he suffered a slight Achilles injury in Week 10, but he’s been practicing this week and looks ready to roll against the Giants.

Are you missing Matt Ryan or Philip Rivers due to the bye, and not satisfied with your backup? Colin Kaepernick is owned in just 12.9 percent of leagues, and has averaged 24.4 fantasy points in his four starts. Only 11 fantasy QBs have more points on a per-game basis this season.

Please reach out via Twitter (@jhalpin37) if you have any questions before kickoff on Sunday. Good luck in Week 11!


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