The injury report for Week 5 is one of the largest it's been all year for fantasy owners to digest. And this is on top of the fact that four teams (Jacksonville, Kansas City, New Orleans, Seattle) are on bye. Between all of the injuries and the bye, fantasy owners may have to dig deep on their rosters or look to the waiver wire to fill out their lineups.
Be sure to check the inactive list before the games on Sunday morning, but the following players have already been ruled out: Cam Newton, Latavius Murray, Tyler Eifert, Donte Moncrief, Eric Ebron, Eli Rogers and Jared Cook. In addition, Arian Foster, Stefon Diggs, Jeremy Langford, Eric Decker, Charles Sims and Dwayne Washington are all considered Doubtful and very likely not to play. Dez Bryant may be listed as Questionable on the injury report, but you may as well consider him Doubtful too.
As for those key players labeled Questionable, you can find out more about the wide receivers and tight ends below. Don't forget to check out quarterbacks, running backs and a kicker (you read that right!) before setting your Week 5 lineups.
Teams on bye: Jacksonville, Kansas City, New Orleans, Seattle
Note: All times are ET and all games are on Sunday.
Alshon Jeffery (knee), WR, Chicago Bears at Indianapolis Colts, 1 p.m.
Jeffery, as predicted, is still on the injury report as Questionable. He'll be active this week, and without Kevin White (now on IR) and likely without Eddie Royal (see below), he's going to be the only wideout that fantasy owners trust for the Bears. He did have a rough game in Week 4, but he should rebound against a Colts defense that just allowed both Jacksonville wide receivers to score touchdowns and is coming off a trip to London without a bye week. Jeffery is a banged-up WR1.
Demaryius Thomas (hip), WR, Denver Broncos vs. Atlanta Falcons, 4:05 p.m.
With at least five receptions and 90 yards in the past three games, Thomas also has found the end zone in each of the past two contests. He tweaked his hip last week against Tampa Bay, but has been able to practice and will be out there later this afternoon. The Falcons allowed two different WRs to score touchdowns in Week 4, and Thomas should be a WR1 in a great matchup.
Julian Edelman (foot), WR, New England Patriots at Cleveland Browns, 1 p.m.
When Edelman was added to the injury report on Thursday, fantasy owners were nervous. Especially considering it’s a foot injury, which is what ended his season early last year and required multiple surgeries. However, Edelman did put in a limited practice on Friday and most reports are saying that he will play today. The Patriots are one of the teams that kick off at 1 p.m. ET, so fantasy owners will know early if Edelman is active. If he ends up playing, start him as a WR2 with upside in PPR leagues. Reunited with Tom Brady at least, this is what fantasy owners have been waiting for.
Eddie Royal (calf), WR, Chicago Bears at Indianapolis Colts, 1 p.m.
After not practicing all week, there is a very good chance that Royal does not play today. However, since this is an early game, be sure to check the inactive list. If Royal is able to give it a go, it’s tough to trust him given the circumstances and his injury history. The best-case scenario is that he will be inactive, and fantasy owners that are looking for a desperation play can pick up Cameron Meredith. With Kevin White on IR, Meredith would replace Royal as Chicago’s No. 2 WR, and may have sneaky fantasy value this week given the appealing matchup.
Rob Gronkowski (hamstring), TE, New England Patriots at Cleveland Browns, 1 p.m.
Raise your hand if you are surprised to see Gronkowski in this space. For yet another week, Gronk is listed as Questionable after practicing on a limited basis. Make no mistake, however, Gronk is playing today and this may be the week that the patience fantasy owners have shown the first-round pick pays off. Not only has the tight end’s usage increased over the past two games, he has been reunited with Tom Brady. All that stands in Gronk’s way of his first big game of the season is a generous, seemingly overmatched Cleveland defense. Gronk may not be 100 percent healthy, but he’s a no-doubt TE1 this week.
Zach Miller (ribs), TE, Chicago Bears at Indianapolis Colts, 1 p.m.
Miller missed practice on Wednesday, but returned for Thursday’s and Friday’s sessions. He's on track to play in Week 5, and the Bears are going to need him with their wide receivers banged up (and one on IR). Miller has been a favorite target of Brian Hoyer since he took over for an injured Jay Cutler. Miller has found the end zone three times in the past two games and should continue to be one of Hoyer’s first looks, especially in the red zone. Miller is a TE1 for Week 5.
Antonio Gates (hamstring), TE, San Diego Chargers at Oakland Raiders, 4:25 p.m.
After putting in a full practice on Friday, it appears that Gates will return in Week 5. This news is more for Hunter Henry owners than Gates owners. Gates is barely on the TE2 radar, even if he is active. He's 36 years old, banged up, and is still going to be sharing targets with Henry. While Philip Rivers may still look for his faithful tight end, Gates is a desperation play, where fantasy owners can just hope he finds the end zone. His presence, however, drops Henry down to a TE2 as well.
— Written by Sarah Lewis, who is part of the Athlon Contributor network and lives, eats, and breathes fantasy football. She also writes for SoCalledFantasyExperts.com among other sites. Have a fantasy football question? Send it to her on Twitter @Sarah_Lewis32.