Many consider fantasy football to be a fun way for fans to delve even deeper into the sport, but for others fantasy football season adds an unwanted amount of stress. Keeping up with which superstar players have suffered injuries and which “no-namers” will fill their shoes is no easy task. Week two of the 2016 NFL season did a great job of making life difficult for all fantasy owners: from the hardcore fanatics to the laid back amateurs.
In Week two against the Bills, New York Jets wide receiver Brandon Marshall suffered a knee injury that looked to be season-ending. Marshall only missed one drive and was able to haul in six catches for 101 yards. Eric Decker will also be nursing an injury but, like Marshall, Decker should be able to play in Week three. If you are in need of a high risk, high reward wide receiver, Quincy Enunwa, owned in 11% of leagues, caught six passes for 92 yards for the Jets. Look for him to get more targets to lighten the load of Marshall and Decker.
Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, who led the NFL in rushing yards a year ago, suffered a torn meniscus and will miss a few weeks. While there is no set timetable for his return, Peterson will not be able to contribute to any fantasy team. Jerick McKinnon (25% owned) looks to take most of Peterson’s carries and has proven that he can be a reliable No. 2 running back. Matt Asiata (2% owned) will also see an increase in carries but McKinnon is likely to get the most fantasy points in that backfield.
Originally, it looked as if Tom Brady’s replacement, Jimmy Garoppolo, would miss multiple weeks with an injury to the AC joint in his throwing shoulder. Rookie quarterback Jacoby Brissett filled in for Garoppolo but didn’t rack up the fantasy points. Reports say that the New England Patriots are pressuring Garoppolo to play through the injury, meaning that Brissett is not a smart waiver addition to your team.
Danny Woodhead, running back for the San Diego Chargers, suffered a season ending ACL tear in his knee. Melvin Gordon filled in for Woodhead nicely and finished with 102 yards rushed and a touchdown. Gordon’s value has skyrocketed and he will now become a solid No. 1 running back for the rest of the year.
Carolina Panthers running back Jonathon Stewart tweaked a hamstring and is expected to miss a week or two. If you are looking for a temporary running back, the Panthers will rely on Fozzy Whitaker (7% owned) to lead their rushing attack.
The Detroit Lions have a solid backfield with Ameer Abdullah and Theo Riddick splitting touches. With Abdullah missing a week or two, nursing a sprained left foot, Riddick (61% owned) will be the primary running back for the Lions moving forward.
Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, is likely to miss a week with an injured right thumb. His backup, Brian Hoyer (1% owned) will start a least one game for the 0-2 Bears. If desperate enough, Hoyer might be able to get a decent amount of points for your team.
Part of the charm of Fantasy Football is allowing “Average Joe’s” to immerse themselves further into the football world. But, when everything seems to be going your way, one significant injury could look to derail your season. Knowing which players to add to your team could mean the difference between heart-breaking defeat and Fantasy Football glory.