We have a ton of situations we are monitoring for Week 9 and it’s shaping up to be a crazy Sunday as far as injury news. Luckily Waz has us covered with his updated Week 9 rankings, as well as some notes on all the situations he’s paying close attention to. Take it away, Waz…
* Both Cardinals stars are considered game-time decisions due to Kyler Murray's (QB12) ankle injury and DeAndre Hopkins' (WR24) hamstring injury. My conservative ranking indicates hope that they play, but I would not count on it. I think you could do better than Colt McCoy (QB25) in relief of Murray, but Christian Kirk (WR30) and Rondale Moore (WR44) are still in play.
* Both Amari Cooper (WR14) and CeeDee Lamb (WR18) are dealing with lower-body injuries, but each put in a pair of limited practices this week. The expectation is that both players will play full snaps tomorrow and each should benefit from the return of Dak Prescott (QB5). If there are any limitations with the WRs, Dalton Schultz (TE7) could be in line for a massive game, especially since Blake Jarwin has been ruled out. Jarwin typically siphons about a dozen snaps from Schultz on a week-to-week basis.
* I'm not counting on Christian McCaffrey (NR) to have a big workload this week if he’s active. With Sam Darnold (QB27) cleared and behind center, Chuba Hubbard (RB19) will likely see workhorse carries again this week. Keep an eye on the news and coachspeak surrounding McCaffrey tomorrow before deciding how to play it.
* Deebo Samuel's (WR09) calf injury is concerning, but I expect him to play usual snaps tomorrow. There is a notable reinjury risk that comes with lingering injuries to the leg, so consider that. George Kittle's (TE8) return should help take some pressure off Samuel as well. If Samuel is out or limited, Elijah Mitchell (RB12), Kittle, and Brandon Aiyuk (WR53) would see increased opportunities.
* Rashod Bateman (WR41) did not practice yesterday due to a groin injury which often causes concern to his gameday availability. Luckily, head coach Jim Harbaugh said that it's "minor" and that Bateman has "a very good chance to play." Sammy Watkins (NR) appears set to return from the thigh injury he sustained in Week 5 and could eat into Bateman's snaps and targets.
* Calvin Ridley was placed on the Reserve/Non-Football Injury list, which will keep him off the field for the next three weeks. Russell Gage (WR39) produced zero fantasy points in relief of Ridley last week, but also dealt with an ankle injury. He logged a limited practice yesterday and should play, but I think we'll likely see more Tajae Sharpe (WR56) and Olamide Zaccheaus (WR72) sprinkled in. The Falcons pass on 62.9% of their plays, but I'm fading all pass-catchers outside Cordarrelle Patterson (RB9) and Kyle Pitts (TE5).
* Tua Tagovailoa (QB15) has been nursing a rib and finger injury all week, but is expected to play. He'll be without DeVante Parker, but Jaylen Waddle (WR16), Myles Gaskin (RB17), and Mike Gesicki (TE03) should all see enough opportunities to produce Top 25 Flex numbers at home against the Texans.
* James Robinson (RB23) has been dealing with a painful heel injury, but did put in limited work yesterday after a pair of early week DNPs. My low-end RB2 ranking indicates that he will play, but could also be phased out halfway through if the Bills pull ahead early. Whether Robinson plays or not, Carlos Hyde (RB36) should be a part of the Jaguars game plan.
* With Saquon Barkley out again, Devontae Booker (RB16) is a solid RB2 play this week, especially if Kenny Golladay (WR43) suits up. With a healthy Golladay, Kadarius Toney (WR25), Evan Engram (TE14), Darius Slayton (WR61), and even John Ross (WR74), the Raiders won't be able to focus entirely on the Giants run game.
* Latavius Murray (NR) is listed as doubtful with an ankle injury, which should give Devonta Freeman (RB32), Ty'Son Williams (RB43), and Le'Veon Bell (RB48) additional work. Despite the Ravens rushing on 45.44% of their plays this season and the Vikings ranked 20th in Rush DVOA, Freeman is the only Ravens running back I would consider starting if I were in a pinch.
See the full set of QB and Flex rankings below.
🥇WAZ'S .5 PPR RANKS
Rob Waziak aka "Waz" is a fantasy football analyst who competes in draft and season-long expert rankings competitions. He's consistently been at or near the top of all industry-wide leaderboards since 2017.
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