Injury Report: Is Chris Ivory Worth the Risk?

I am not a doctor nor do I play one on television. However, I am willing to give my best guesses as to whether or not certain potential impact players play this week based on their practice reports. This is just my opinion, but here are my takes on injured players heading into week two:

Alshon Jeffery, Bears, $14,400 – Just when we thought we were out of the clear with the Alshon Jeffery hamstring injury, he aggravated it in practice (on Friday no less). Players getting downgraded and/or missing practice late in the week is never a good thing. When it is on Friday, it is a downright awful sign. Therefore I am going to give him a 30 percent chance of playing, but that may be generous. Plan to pivot off of him and use other Bears pass catchers at a discount, as they’re unlikely to have much success running the ball against the Cardinals.

Andre Ellington, Cardinals, $11,800 – This is an easy one, because Andre Ellington has already been listed as out and even he acknowledged Friday that his sprained ACL could cost him two to three weeks. The question for the Ellington injury is which back to go with in his absence: Chris Johnson or David Johnson. Chris is fully expected to be the “lead dog,” which is why I would lean his way (especially in cash games), but David is pretty intriguing. He only touched the ball once last week, but it was a screen play, and he used his blazing speed to take it to the house. Could David prove to be Antone Smith from last season with the big-play potential on a weekly basis? I think he has a shot, so do not fully fade him from GPP consideration, even if you do not ultimately end up rostering him.

C.J. Spiller, Saints, $10,100 – Umm, it turns out the Saints may not even need this guy. Mark Ingram caught nine passes last week after it was believed C.J. Spiller would take over much of the passing-back responsibilities in the offense. Spiller is listed as questionable, but saying his knee is “feeling good.” He practiced on a limited basis all week and I don’t really feel great about rostering him even if he plays. He’s like the sixth or seventh option in the offense, which should be productive on Sunday, and he’s also coming off of an injury. I’ll give him a 50/50 shot of playing and a 10 percent shot of making a real impact.

Chris Ivory, Jets, $9,100 – Not only is Chris Ivory listed as questionable, but he plays on Monday night. His coach expects him to be available, despite the fact that he was limited in practice all week. It’s still risky putting your eggs in the basket of a player whose designation is supposed to suggest he’s around 50/50 in a game that kicks well after lock (and before their final active/inactive list is released). I’ll give Ivory a 90 percent chance of playing, which is enough to consider fading him in cash even with his fantastic matchup. Using him will depend on your risk tolerance.

Delanie Walker, Titans, $7,800 – Delanie Walker returned to a full practice on Friday, so he’s out of the water with his wrist injury, right? Wrong. ESPN Titans reporter Paul Kuharsky considers Delanie Walker “iffy” to play, which surprises me (especially considering the nature of the injury). I suppose it’s awfully difficult to block 300 lb. men with a sprained wrist, but I feel like this is an injury he’s going to try and tough out. Regardless of Kuharsky reports, I’ll give him an 85 percent chance of playing with a 70 percent chance he plays well if he’s deemed active. A bad wrist will likely affect his pass-catching ability as well, which is the reason for the slight skepticism.

Derek Carr, Raiders, $10,900 – I wanted to touch on this one because this is a case in which you should worry even though the player is playing. Derek Carr is listed as probable for week two, but he is dealing with a badly bruised thumb. Gripping a football is his job and having a swollen thumb will not make it easy. The Ravens are a tough defense, so he’ll have to sling it, but I still would downgrade the receivers. There isn’t a ton of reason for optimism in the matchup prior to the injury, so add in the injury factor and I’ll sit this one out.

Jordan Reed, Redskins, $7,900 – Do you remember Samuel L. Jackson’s character from Unbreakable? He referred to himself as “Mr. Glass,” but that nickname could be a better fit for the Redskins’ tight end (TE). In his two NFL seasons, Jordan Reed has played nine and 11 games, plus he has now been listed as “questionable” in both of his two games in 2015. According to the Washington Post, Reed is expected to play, but the question is can he make it through a full game? “Yeah I’m going to play. One hundred percent,” he said, but I still have a hard time inserting him into my cash lineup. Throw in the fact that he’s playing the Rams and I’m going to fully delegate him to tournament play (and I actually prefer Jered Cook of the TEs in this game).

Justin Forsett, Ravens, $12,000 – There’s nothing to worry about here, after he was limited earlier in the week with a shoulder issue. He was upgraded to a full practice on Thursday and has been designated with the “probable” tag. He’ll get an opportunity to face the NFL’s friendliest defense in terms of fantasy points allowed to running backs (RBs) last season, so you’ll absolutely want to roster him. Do not listen to the noise surrounding him potentially losing goal line carries because of the shoulder issue. He’s going to play and he’s going to play well.

LeSean McCoy, Bills, $12,800 – Having fun yet with LeSean McCoy, fantasy owners? This is now the second straight week he’ll head into the game with the dreaded “questionable” tag. However, ESPN’s Marie Russini reports her sources are telling her McCoy is expected to “play lots” on Sunday. This comes only a day after Coach Rex Ryan acknowledged McCoy’s avilablility was “a little bit of a concern.” It appears he was just using coach speak to throw off his opponent (the Patriots). I want to fully trust the ESPN report, but I still believe it’s only a 90-95 percent chance he plays. If he’s pronounced active, all prior worry about his status should be immediately forgotten.

Mike Evans, Buccaneers, $14,400 – Earlier in the week Mike Evans declared his hamstring “100 percent,” yet he is still being listed as questionable. On Friday, Coach Lovie Smith said Evans is “closer” to being ready to play this week. Usually when the player speaks out like Evans did, he wants to play. Whether or not Smith allows him to play is another issue, but one would assume he wants to have his best receiver on the field. I’ll give Evans an 80 percent chance of playing and a 50 percent chance of putting up a performance worthy of the price tag. If he’s active, I’m more worried about the quarterback (QB) play of Jameis Winston than I am about his health.

Randall Cobb, Packers, $14,400 – An AC joint injury tends to linger, so the fact that he made it through week one without any setbacks is encouraging. Though he was listed as questionable earlier in the week, Randall Cobb was upgraded to probable after a full practice on Friday. He’ll once again be playing at less than 100 percent, and he’ll probably have to deal with Richard Sherman at least on occasion. Sherman completely shut down Jordy Nelson last year, but the nice thing about Cobb is that he’ll line up at different spots in the formation. Unless the Seahawks completely shadow him with Sherman, he should find ways to get the ball despite the difficult matchup.

T.Y. Hilton, Colts, $14,000 – Well, well, it appears we may see T.Y. Hilton active on Monday after all. Hilton suffered a badly bruised knee last week and it was speculated the injury could cost him one to two weeks. If the game was being played on Sunday, he would probably be inactive, but luckily he gets the extra day. He practiced on Saturday and Coach Chuck Pagano says he is “optimistic” Hilton will play. It should be noted that the last time the Colts played the Jets, Darrelle Revis shadowed Donte Moncrief and the team doubled Hilton with a corner and a safety. That was under Rex Ryan, but the game plan was interesting to say the least. I’ll give him a 60 percent chance of playing with a 30 percent chance of putting up solid-to-spectacular numbers. If that’s a gamble you feel comfortable with in GPPs, then go for it.

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders is a fantasy sports expert with over 15 years of playing experience. After starting several freelance fantasy sports blogs, Ricky moved up in the fantasy industry when he joined Going9 Baseball. He wrote fantasy baseball content and had a weekly radio spot on the site’s SiriusXM Satellite Radio show. Shortly thereafter, in early 2013, Ricky joined RotoExperts as a three-sport fantasy contributor, eventually becoming one of the site’s lead basketball writers. While writing for RotoExperts, Ricky was introduced to daily fantasy sports and immediately fell in love. With help from some of his mentors, some of the best DFS players in the world, he honed his skills and became the daily fantasy expert he is today. When RotoExperts created a daily-focused website called DailyRoto.com, Ricky was brought on as one of the main contributors. He still makes frequent appearances on the RotoExperts SiriusXM Radio show and on the FNTSY Sports Television Network, talking daily fantasy sports. He also continues to write for a few DFS content sites: RotoCurve and The Fantasy Fix. Ricky is a proud and active member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. He has agreed to be a writer and representative for the FantasyDraft brand and serves as an ambassador to the site. He has no more access to the site than the typical user. Don’t hesitate to contact Ricky with questions on Twitter @RSandersDFS.

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