There were more big injuries in Week 7. As always, injuries play a crucial role when it comes to constructing our fantasy lineups. Here’s the status of players with the most interest to the fantasy community after the second weekend of NFL games:
Ben Roethlisberger, QB Pittsburgh Steelers – Roethlisberger missed Sunday’s game against the Chiefs while he still recovers from a knee injury. However, Big Ben was “pretty close” to playing and Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said he expects Roethlisberger to return Sunday against the Bengals. Roethlisberger’s return will be a big boast to the fantasy value of all the Steelers’ skill position players.
Tony Romo, Dallas Cowboys – Romo has begun throwing and while he’s not eligible to come back until Week 11, Romo can start practicing again next week. It’s still a couple of weeks away but so far the signs are positive that Romo could be back when he’s first eligible to play versus the Dolphins.
Marcus Mariota, QB Tennessee Titans – Mariota missed Sunday’s game against the Falcons with an MCL sprain. Mariota is going to test out his knee on Tuesday to see whether or not he can practice. If Mariota still isn’t healthy, Zach Mettenberger will get his second straight start against the Texans.
Tyrod Taylor, QB Buffalo Bills – Taylor missed his second straight game while dealing with a knee injury. The Bills are on a bye and head coach Rex Ryan said he’s confident Taylor will be ready to go in Week 9 when the Bills face the Dolphins. If he can’t go, E.J. Manuel will continue to start in his place.
Josh McCown, QB Cleveland Browns – McCown was forced from Sunday’s game against the Rams with a shoulder injury. The team announced that McCown won’t practice on Wednesday. If McCown can’t play this week, Johnny Manziel will get the start against Arizona.
Arian Foster, RB Houston Texans – Foster tore his Achilles tendon and will miss the rest of the year. It’s a bitter end to a nightmare season for Foster. He missed the first three games after offseason groin surgery. Alfred Blue and Chris Polk will battle for touches with Foster out.
Dion Lewis, RB New England Patriots – Lewis missed Sunday’s game against the Jets with a strained abdomen. The Patriots play on Thursday night against the Dolphins, so Lewis won’t have a full week to get healthy. If Lewis can’t go again this week, James White will continue to work as the third-down back versus Miami.
Chris Ivory, RB New York Jets – Ivory is dealing with tightness in his quad. Ivory played just over half the offensive snaps against the Patriots on Sunday, although the Jets usually split snaps between their backs. Ivory is expected to play this week against Oakland.
Joseph Randle, RB Dallas Cowboys – Randle suffered an oblique injury early in Sunday’s game against the Giants. He’s expected to miss some time with the injury. In his absence Darren McFadden rushed for 152 yards and a touchdown on 29 carries. McFadden will be the Cowboys’ starting running back with Randle out.
Ryan Mathews, RB Philadelphia Eagles – Mathews strained his groin in Sunday’s loss to Carolina. However, the injury couldn’t have been too bad because Mathews ran for a 63-yard touchdown after the injury occurred. Mathews has the Eagles’ bye week to rest his groin.
Jeremy Maclin, WR Kansas City Chiefs – Maclin missed Sunday’s game against the Steelers because of a concussion. It was reported that Maclin was going to play but the Chiefs held him out as a precaution. It appears likely Maclin will be back in the Chiefs’ lineup this Sunday when Kansas City takes on Detroit.
Dez Bryant, WR Dallas Cowboys – Bryant missed Sunday’s game against the Giants but it appears he could be back this week when Dallas faces the Seahawks. Bryant said he could return to the field before his broken foot is 100 percent healed. It sounds like Dez has a better than 50-50 chance of playing this week.
DeSean Jackson, Washington Redskins – Jackson missed another game with a hamstring injury. He hasn’t played since Week 1. Jackson was close to returning last week but suffered a setback in practice. Now Jackson could miss another couple of games. It’s becoming a lost season for the speedy wideout.
Jordan Matthews, WR Philadelphia Eagles – Matthews suffered ligament damage in his hand three weeks ago but he’s been playing through it. The injury is apparently no longer an issue but Matthews has been plagued by drops this season. Matthews will be in the lineup when the Eagles return from their bye.
Davante Adams, WR Green Bay Packers – Adams returned to practice on Monday and will play this week against the Broncos. Adams had missed the last three games with an ankle injury. He’ll be Green Bay’s No.3 receiver behind Randall Cobb and James Jones.
Antonio Gates, TE San Diego Chargers – Gates missed Sunday’s game with a low-grade MCL sprain. Gates is expected back this week. He’s one of the toughest players in the NFL, so it’s likely Gates will only miss one game. If he doesn’t, Ladarius Green will get another start and be a TE1 versus the Ravens.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Seferian-Jenkins has missed the last four games with a shoulder injury but he’s close to returning. If Seferian-Jenkins doesn’t practice this week, he could be back Week 9 versus the Giants.