Who's healthy enough to start for your fantasy football team
The fantasy season is nearing its postseason. The weeks are winding down; the injuries are piling up. You need to stay ahead of everything in order to make that playoff push. Here’s some information on those that are on the Week 9 injury report or those stepping in for the injured.
Darren Sproles, RB, New Orleans Saints vs. Philadelphia Eagles (Monday night)
A broken hand has Darren Sproles out indefinitely. If there's any good news, as a selfish fantasy owner writes, is that we don't have to wait until Monday for lineup decisions. The bad news is that we just lost a PPR stud. Yes, it might clear up the Saints' backfield situation a little bit, but I am still not trusting Mark Ingram unless he has regained eligibility at Alabama. Pierre Thomas is clear benefactor here. He has been the team's leading ball carrier each of the last four games, albeit 13 carries is the high watermark in those games. But Sproles had 40 touches in those four games. If Thomas is out there, go get him and at least throw him in as a flex until Sproles' return — if there is a return in time for the fantasy season.
Darren McFadden, RB, Oakland Raiders vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Well, that was nice to see the return of a first-round pick. McFadden ran for a season-high 114 yards and added four catches for 23 yards against the lowly Chiefs. The problem is: Was it a mirage or is this a sign of things to come? McFadden goes from fantasy's 22nd-ranked team against running backs to its 10th this week in the form of the visiting Buccaneers. That said, Adrian Peterson and Alfred Morris have had 100-yard, scoring days against Tampa Bay as two of five backs to score double digits in PPR. Tampa Bay's 30th-ranked fantasy defense against receivers could open things up for McFadden. He is not going to be worth the first-round pick this season (unless you make the semis or finals when he gets Kansas City again followed by Carolina), but McFadden should be able to provide a few more low-end double-digit days on the way there.
Ahmad Bradshaw, RB, New York Giants vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
Ahmad Bradshaw missed Friday's practice with his foot injury, his second missed practice this week. He is listed as questionable for today's late game against the visiting Steelers. It looks like limited practices will be the norm for Bradshaw and the Giants, who rank fifth in fantasy at the RB position. He had 78 yards and no scores on 22 carries last week. Love the carries; hate the lack of points. He has had games of 22, 12, 27, 30 and 13 carries in the last five games. Meanwhile, Andre Brown and David Wilson have combined for 14 carries in that time. If this is what Bradshaw has to do during the week to be good on Sunday, fine by me. Very few backs are getting that kind of work, particularly when the two behind him have been productive this season as well. Yes, the Steelers are fifth against fantasy running backs and have allowed just three scores to the position since Week 3, but roll with Bradshaw and be happy with whatever you get.
— By Corby A. Yarbrough @Corby_Yarbrough on Twitter