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Next Man Up: Week 4

Dynasty fantasy football can be a game of attrition. @reflipewthenuz breaks down all of the week’s injuries which impact your squads, including the loss of the number 1 pick in start-up drafts. We here at have you covered with all your relevant injury news.

AFC East:
  • Jets QB Sam Darnold revealed in a radio interview that he anticipates returning to the lineup by week 5. The Jets have a brutal schedule ahead of them. They thankfully have an early-season bye week in week 4 but it is highly likely that when Darnold returns his team will still be seeking their first victory of the year. I would hope that Darnold is given more than enough time to fight off the Mono and regain some of his strength before being reinserted into the starting lineup. Darnold’s absence and the injury to seasoned backup Trevor Siemian have put a damper on LeVeon Bell and the rest of the Jets skill position players. 
  • Patriots WR Julian Edelman sustained a chest injury in the team’s Week 3 contest. The severity of the injury is not known at this time. His services were no longer required in the blowout and New England kept him on the sidelines. Some of the early reports hint at a possible rib injury for the Super Bowl MVP. With the recent release of Antonio Brown, an Edelman absence would be a sizable hole in the Patriots lineup. If he were to miss time look for Phillip Dorsett, Matthew Slater, and Jakobi Meyers to garner targets opposite Josh Gordon. I would also not be surprised to see an uptick for a returning James White if Edelman were to miss games. 
  • Dolphins WR Allen Hurns suffered a concussion in the team’s loss to Dallas. Hurns was already a desperation play in dynasty at this point in his career. If and when Albert Wilson returns from his own injury look for Hurns to find his way to the bench in South Beach. Even if he manages to clear the concussion protocol Allen Hurns is a player best left on your waiver wire. 
AFC South:
  • Colts WR TY Hilton re-injured his quad and was forced from Indy’s Week 3 victory over Atlanta. Hilton was a target monster in this one garnering 10 in the first half alone. With Devin Funchess already out with an injury, the loss of TY would leave Indy perilously thin at the position. If Hilton is unable to suit up for next week’s action the Colts will turn to rookie Parris Campbell, Chester Rogers, and Deon Cain. If that is the case look for a heavy dose of 12 personnel with Eric Ebron and Jack Doyle on the field together.
AFC North:
  • In an injury update, Bengals WR AJ Green revealed that he expects to miss more time than his initial 6-8 week timetable. The Bengals are going nowhere and there is little reason to rush back and risk greater injury for the All-Pro WR. Cincinnati also has the benefit of both Tyler Boyd and John Ross being off to hot starts in the WR corps. The Bengals passing attack has been one of the bigger surprises over the first three weeks of the season. If Green can get back and integrate himself into the system before the playoff run, he could be a game-changer for his dynasty owners who withstood his absence. 
  • It was revealed this past week that Cleveland TE David Njoku suffered a broken wrist in week 2. He was unable to suit up for the team’s Week 3 loss to Los Angeles. Cleveland placed the talented former 1st round pick on IR meaning he will miss a minimum of 8 games. In his absence, Cleveland will turn to Demetrius Harris and Ricky Seals-Jones to fill the void. Long on talent and light on production Harris has been a project for GM John Dorsey going back to his days in Kansas City with he drafted the former University of Milwaukee basketball player. Keep an eye on Harris to see what he can finally do with a meaningful role. 
  • Pittsburgh TE Vance McDonald injured his shoulder and was forced from his return game to San Francisco. The Steelers certainly don’t need to deal with any more issues to the offensive side of the ball. McDonald was a sneaky 2019 pick to enjoy a late-career breakout in the manner of Delanie Walker. With a rookie QB at the helm, it does not seem like that will be in the cards this season. Vance has a lengthy history of shoulder injuries going all the way back to college so this will be a situation to monitor. If he is forced to miss time Pittsburgh will be forced to turn to Xavier Grimble or Zach Gentry neither of whom are appealing options.
AFC West:
  • Denver RB Royce Freeman was forced from the team’s game against the Packers with a shoulder injury. He was able to reenter the game and play down the stretch. The injury looks to be minor but you should monitor the situation as the week progresses. If he is forced to miss game action fellow RB Phillip Lindsay will become a must-play.
  • Kansas City RB LeSean McCoy re-aggravated his ankle injury in the teams week 3 win over Baltimore. Neither McCoy or the team seemed to be overly concerned about the injury long term. If McCoy is forced to miss any game action the team will turn to some combination of Darrell Williams and Darwin Thompson. Unless that is, nominal starter Damien Williams can return for next week. Keep an eye on how the top two RBs in Kansas City progress as the week goes along. 
NFC East:
  • In the biggest injury of the weekend, Giants RB Saquon Barkley injured his ankle in the team’s victory over Tampa. This injury will be a hard loss to swallow for dynasty owners. Hopefully, you already have Wayne Gallman stashed on your bench for just such a situation. If not, and he is available, he will be the number 1 add for the week. Saquon’s MRI on Monday confirmed the diagnosis of a high ankle sprain. He has been given a 4-8 week timetable with team sources stating they believe he will be closer to the higher end on time missed. Gallman may fill the starting spot but he will be an obvious huge drop in production for both the Giants and your dynasty squads. Hopefully, the absence of his top weapon will not be detrimental to the development of young franchise QB Daniel Jones who flourished in his first start. Pray for good news and a short convalescence for one of the best young RBs in the game. 
NFC South:
  • Saints WR Keith Kirkwood was placed on IR ending his season. He apparently injured his hamstring during pregame warmups before the team’s Week 2 loss to the Rams. The Saints are dropping like flies early in the 2019 season. Kirkwood did not have an early-season roll and this will likely have very little if any effect on your fantasy squads. However, this is dynasty and any time a young playmaker goes down we here at want to bring it to your attention.
  • Falcons RB Ito Smith was knocked out of their week 3 contest with a concussion. To my knowledge, Smith does not have a lengthy concussion history. This injury will likely lead to a loss of practice reps as the week progresses. If he is forced to miss time the Falcons will likely activate either Brian Hill or Qadree Ollison for next week’s game. The Falcons have carried both backs on the active roster so they evidently value both players. From a dynasty perspective, Ollison would be the add to make. He is a rookie 5th round pick who played well in the preseason and could potentially carve out a long term complementary role in Atlanta. Hill has spent time on a couple of teams at this point and will likely not hold any value long term.
NFC North:
  • Vikings WR Chad Bebe was carted off the field with an ankle injury. And just like that one of the thinnest WR groups in the entire league just got a little more shallow. The Vikings will likely be forced to pick up an FA at this point to fill out their roster. Perhaps a call to former 1st round pick Laquon Treadwell will be in order. The Vikings are one of the most run happy teams in the entire league and the loss of Bebe will likely have very little effect on your dynasty squads. The only real effect will be a potential rise in targets for the RB and TE position groups. 
  • Chicago WR Taylor Gabriel suffered a concussion in the best game of his career. When he exited the game in the 3rd quarter he already had 6/75/3! Gabriel is prone to big games like this but in all probability will not put up numbers like this for the rest of the season. Gabriel is far more valuable to the Bears than to your dynasty teams. If he were to miss next week’s showdown with the Vikings it would be somewhat of a downgrade for Mitchell Trubisky. However, his absence would likely force last year’s impressive rookie Anthony Miller back to the forefront. Miller has inexplicably been an afterthought in the Chicago game plan to this point in the season. Perhaps his preseason injury was far worse than initially reported. Behind Miller, Javon Wims and potentially the rookie Riley Ridley could see more time on the field if Gabriel misses action.
NFC West:
  • The NFC West made it through the week largely unscathed.

Thank you for reading this article! Please be sure to join the #Nerdherd so you don’t miss out on any of the amazing things we have to offer Follow me @ReflipeWThenuz for more dynasty content and other musings. 

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