Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Trust or Fade: Injury Updates for Thursday Lineups

Steve Buzzard and I will be collaborating every Friday on a feature spotlighting the week’s injury concerns. By Friday, we’ll have a full week of practice participation reports and media interviews to more accurately drill down on whether a player is likely to play, and play effectively, on Sunday.

But that doesn’t help you exploit injury edges in your Thursday-Sunday lineups.

So, I’ll be giving a quick “trust or fade” recommendation on the blog each week after the Wednesday practice participation report is released. It’ll be based on incomplete information, but I’m hoping to keep you from starting a player who is likely to be ineffective or take a smart risk on a player who others may be avoiding unnecessarily.

You’ll also want to check out our full midweek injury feature from Craig Zumsteg when it goes live late Wednesday night on our season-long article page.

Thursday Night Football Expectation
Here are my recommendations for how to approach players with injury concerns playing on Thursday Night Football:

Julian Edelman 6600  >>>  (Ankle | Not listed on injury report)
If you’re buying into a heavy passing expectation for the Patriots this week, don’t shy away from Edelman. New England is notorious for listing half the team as questionable, whether they’re assured of playing or known to be ruled out. Edelman isn’t on the injury report this week and should be at full strength. He’s safe to use in Thursday night contests.

Trust or Fade?
Here are the most high profile injured players under consideration for DFS lineups this week and my recommendation for how to approach them in your Thursday-Sunday cash and GPP lineups:

LeSean McCoy 7200  >>>  (Hamstring | Full)
Cash: FADE
GPP: FADE
You need to see more than one full practice to trust McCoy, who has a high hamstring strain at risk of in-game aggravation. Consider him as a high risk GPP play only.


Randall Cobb 8000  >>>  (Shoulder | Limited)
Cash: TRUST
GPP: TRUST
Cobb will be limited all week as the Packers keep him away from contact but I fully expect him to play on Sunday.

Alshon Jeffery 8300  >>>  (Calf | Limited)
Cash: FADE
GPP: LEAN FADE
Jeffery needs to increase his practice participation to trust in cash games this week. If the Thursday news is positive, he’s worth considering as a GPP play.

Mike Evans 7700  >>>  (Hamstring | DNP)
Cash: FADE
GPP: FADE
Evans’ Wednesday DNP reads much more like a player who isn’t ready to practice than a player getting a day off midweek.

Joique Bell 5200  >>>  (Knee | Not listed)
Cash: FADE
GPP: LEAN FADE
I’m frankly shocked Bell isn’t listed on the Lions’ injury report after spending nearly all of camp on PUP. Bell’s early week positive participation probably hurts the upside of Ameer Abdullah than helps Bell’s ceiling. But it’s still too soon to expect Bell is healthy enough to get more than 8-10 touches.

Tre’ Mason 5000  >>>  (Hamstring | DNP)
Cash: FADE
GPP: FADE
I don’t expect Mason to play this week. You may consider Benny Cunningham as a speculative GPP play.

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Check back on Friday for our Injury Spotlight and Lineup Recommendation feature. Until then, follow me on Twitter @JeneBramel for breaking analysis on practice participation and media interviews. Finally, on Sunday morning, I’ll be adapting my Injury Expectations column for this blog to help navigate any tricky game time decisions.



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