The “Fantasy Doctor” Is In!
Let the “Fantasy Doctor” keep all of your teams in shape throughout the season. In this newsletter, you’ll find important injury news and notes on some key fantasy players around the sports world.
Quad in question: Steven Jackson could be a game time decision
What happened: Falcons RB Steven Jackson sustained a quad injury on Sunday and wasn’t able to play in the second half.
Player/team outlook: With a playoff berth on the line in the Falcons-Panthers matchup, Jackson will do everything he can to be on the field. Atlanta needs to have all its backups ready to go in case Jackson can’t make it into or through the contest.
Fantasy recommendation: For those leagues playing championships this week or anyone taking part in weekly games, Jackson must be monitored all the way until kickoff. Devonta Freeman and Jacquizz Rodgers could make for interesting final week fill-ins.
Allen’s ankle and collarbone remain issues in season finale
What happened: Chargers WR Keenan Allen missed last week’s game against the 49ers with ankle and collarbone injuries.
Player/team outlook: Allen’s ability to stretch the field at any time is missing from San Diego’s offense when he’s not out there. The Chargers are battling for the playoffs and are hopeful Allen can play in their critical game vs. the Chiefs. However, with a broken collarbone, it is unlikely that he will be able to play.
Fantasy recommendation: Similar to Jackson above, it’s wait it out time on Allen. If he’s absent or limited, Eddie Royal and Malcom Floyd get more looks, and of course Antonio Gates will be relied on heavily as both a receiver and decoy.
Achilles tear ends Varejao’s season in Cleveland
What happened: Cavaliers center Anderson Varejao tore his left Achilles tendon in a game on Dec. 23.
Player/team outlook: Varejao was a serviceable big man for Cleveland, which must figure out a way to fill his spot. The team needs to find someone who can work the middle while the stars score the points.
Fantasy recommendation: Varejao may not have topped the board when it came to centers, but he added decent depth. Tristan Thompson gets extra time at the position until the Cavaliers have a better answer.
Randolph missing time with knee ailment
What happened: Grizzlies forward Zach Randolph missed a few games with a sore and swollen right knee. MRI results were negative.
Player/team outlook: Randolph and Marc Gasol form one of the most formidable forward tandems in the league. Memphis needs a healthy Randolph on the court as soon as possible, but can’t rush him back in what looks to be a special season.
Fantasy recommendation: As long as it’s nothing serious, Randolph should be back soon and fantasy owners are counting on his nightly double-doubles. Understand though, he might be rested at times throughout the year to keep him fresh for a playoff run.
Back ailment takes Mason off ice
What happened: Flyers goaltender Steve Mason went down in practice last week with a back injury and has been placed on injured reserve. MRI results revealed that there were no serious structural issues.
Player/team outlook: Initial reports hoped Mason wouldn’t miss too much time, but now it’s hard to tell how long he’ll be out. The Flyers are trying to battle back into playoff contention, but might have to go without Mason for a while.
Fantasy recommendation: Ray Emery gets the first chance to replace Mason, but he’s really only worth the pickup in very deep leagues or for a team truly struggling at the spot that needs to take a chance.
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