Injuries are an unfortunate part of the game and the longer the season goes on, the more impactful those ailments tend to be. With the fantasy playoffs now within sight, it’s as important as ever to stay informed about injuries and to know how to respond.
Week 12 also has a full three-game Thursday slate to complicate matters, plus a pair of powerful offenses on bye. Here are the key fantasy-relevant injuries to be aware of in Week 12.
Week 12 NFL Byes: Arizona Cardinals, Kansas City Chiefs
Amari Cooper (WR) Dallas Cowboys – Cooper tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of Week 11 and has already been ruled out for the Cowboys’ Week 12 home game against the Raiders. Cooper should return to face New Orleans in Week 13.
CeeDeel Lamb (WR) Dallas Cowboys – Dallas will also be without sophomore sensation CeeDee Lamb, who banged his head on the turf and is in the league’s concussion protocol. With precious little time to be cleared before Thursday, Lamb is looking very questionable, but if he was somehow cleared, would be a locked-in WR1.
Alvin Kamara (RB) New Orleans Saints – A sprained MCL has cost Kamara the past two games and he was not on the practice field Monday. With the Saints hosting Buffalo on Thursday, there’s very little time for Kamara to get healthy ahead of Week 12. Consider the superstar running back very doubtful.
A.J. Brown (WR) Tennessee Titans – Already limited by a previous knee injury, Brown added hand and chest injuries to his resume against Houston. None of these ailments are considered particularly severe, but they could continue to cap Brown’s upside.
Michael Carter (RB) New York Jets – Carter was felled by the dreaded high-ankle sprain and should miss multiple weeks. The Jets will now resort to a committee of Tevin Coleman and Ty Johnson, who should have more value in PPR formats.
Allen Robinson (WR) Chicago Bears – Robinson missed Week 11 with a hamstring injury and has precious little time to recover before Thursday’s early game. Even when healthy, A-Rob has been one of the biggest fantasy busts of the season, so there’s no reason to insert him into lineups, even if he’s somehow cleared to play this week.
Saquon Barkley (RB) New York Giants – Playing for the first time since Week 5, Barkley emerged unscathed from New York’s Monday night loss in Tampa. In that game, Barkley played 36 (62%) snaps, accrued half of New York’s rushing attempts, and racked up a 16.7% target share. Barkley should be in the RB1 conversation for the remainder of the year.
Kareem Hunt (RB) Cleveland Browns – Sidelined since Week 7, Hunt is rumored to be returning to practice this week, which would be a welcomed development for patient fantasy managers. Once activated, Hunt should quickly regain his weekly RB2/3 role in a Cleveland offense desperate for play-makers.
Adam Trautman (TE) New Orleans Saints – Just when he finally scored after a month-long hot streak, Trautman sprained his MCL and will miss 4-6 weeks, all but ending his fantasy season. Nick Vannett should take over as the starter but has all of one target this season and is well off the fantasy radar.
Elijah Mitchell (RB) San Francisco 49ers – Michell missed Week 11 with a busted finger but is listed as day-to-day. If he’s able to participate in a full practice this week, Mitchell should reclaim his starting role but might lose more work to Jeff Wilson.
Cole Beasley (WR) Buffalo Bills – A rib injury has been limiting Beasley’s effectiveness and he was only able to play 57% of Buffalo’s snaps last week. Beasley has been held under double-digit fantasy points in back-to-back games and was limited in Monday’s practice. With a short turnaround for Thursday night’s game, fantasy managers should look for other options this week.
Jarvis Landry (WR) Cleveland Browns – Landry played through the same knee injury that has hampered him all season but was on and off the field frequently. We’ll monitor Landry’s practice status throughout the week and adjust Week 12 projections accordingly.
Justin Fields (QB) Chicago Bears – Fields was forced from Chicago’s Week 11 victory with injured ribs and replaced by Andy Dalton, who looked credible. Since the Bears open up Thursday’s slate by traveling to Detroit, Fields won’t play in Week 12, at minimum.
Logan Thomas (TE) Washington Football Team – Sidelined since Week 4 with a hamstring ailment, Thomas is scheduled to return to practice this week and could be activated ahead of Monday’s game. Because of it being a Monday contest and possible rust even if he suits up, fantasy managers should look for other options in Week 12.
Jordan Howard (RB) Philadelphia Eagles – A sprained knee knocked Howard out of Philadelphia’s Week 11 win and will cost the veteran rusher at least one game. With Miles Sanders back as the club’s main runner and Howard’s lack of pass-catching upside, there’s no reason for fantasy managers with tight rosters to hold onto Howard.
Sterling Shepard (WR) New York Giants – Shepard was inactive Monday but was a limited participant in practice prior to that game. He’s trending towards returning to the lineup but can only be viewed as a fringe WR4 in a moribund New York passing “attack.”
Jared Goff (QB) Detroit Lions – Detroit has their traditional early kickoff on Thanksgiving, so Goff is not expected to be active with his oblique injury. Tim Boyle is in-line to get the start, which is bad news overall for Detroit’s offense.
Jamal Agnew (WR) Jacksonville Jaguars – Agnew injured his hip late in Jacksonville’s blowout loss to the 49ers and has been placed on season-ending IR.
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