Week 6 of the NFL season is here, and the Rotoworld crew has everything you need to cash in a winning week. Patrick Daugherty answers your lineup questions with his Week 6 Rankings, Nick Mensio tells you who to start and who to fade in Start’ Em or Sit ‘Em, and Evan Silva breaks down every matchup in his award-winning Matchups Column.
As for me, I am here to shed some light on the most important injury situations facing fantasy owners heading into the weekend. The sister resource to this column is the Rotoworld News Page, which will have every single inactive and all the late-breaking news up to kickoff and beyond. I also occasionally tweet about football @RMSummerlin.
Bengals @ Bills
* LeSean McCoy (probable, hamstring) is set to make a shock return to the lineup after practicing on a limited basis all week. With Karlos Williams (concussion) out and Tyrod Taylor (questionable, knee) unlikely to play, McCoy should see as big a workload as he can handle against a Bengals team which was run over last week. McCoy has admitted he is not 100-percent healthy, but he is an injury risk-reward RB2. Sammy Watkins (questionable, calf) and Percy Harvin (questionable, hip) are also expected to play, but Watkins may be limited to 40-50 offensive snaps. With E.J. Manuel expected to start, Watkins is more of a WR4 this week. Marcus Easley (shoulder) is out.
* Leon Hall missed practice Wednesday with a back injury, but he got in limited sessions Thursday and Friday. He is questionable.
Bears @ Lions
* Theo Riddick suffered a groin injury in practice Thursday and was not able to suit up Friday. Riddick is officially listed as questionable, but missing a Friday practice following an in-week injury almost always spells doom. It would be surprising if he plays. Ameer Abdullah should see the majority of Riddick’s seven target average, making him a safer bet as an RB3/FLEX. Joique Bell (ankle) is listed as questionable but fully expected to play. Eric Ebron (knee) returned to practice on a limited basis this week, but he was ruled out Friday. DeAndre Levy (hip) and Haloti Ngata (calf) are also out while James Ihedigbo (quad) is questionable.
* Like Riddick, Martellus Bennett suffered a quad injury at Thursday’s practice and was forced to sit out Friday’s session. He is also listed as questionable but again is unlikely to play. Chicago does look set to get Alshon Jeffery (questionable, hamstring) and Eddie Royal (questionable, ankle) back after both saw limited work this week. Antrel Rolle (ankle), Terrance Mitchell (hamstring), Shea McClellin (knee) and Ego Ferguson (knee) are doubtful.
Cardinals @ Steelers
* Ben Roethlisberger (knee) got in limited practices Wednesday and Thursday, but he was ruled out Friday. Big Ben is trending towards a return next week against the Chiefs. Antonio Brown is more of a WR2 with Michael Vick under center, but he is still a starter in most leagues. Ryan Shazier (shoulder) and Will Allen (ankle) are also out. Cortez Allen (knee) and Jarvis Jones (hip) are questionable.
Broncos @ Browns
* Josh McCown (ankle) was limited all week, but he is listed as probable. McCown has been on fire the last three weeks, but he is a risky start against the Broncos’ suffocating defense. Isaiah Crowell (toe) was limited Friday and is listed as questionable. He should play, but he is not a great fantasy option. Robert Turbin (ankle), Shaun Draughn (back), Karlos Dansby (ankle) and Desmond Bryant (shoulder) are questionable. Tashaun Gipson (ankle), Joe Haden (concussion) and Craig Robertson (ankle) are out.
* Demaryius Thomas (neck) did not practice Wednesday or Thursday, but he returned for a limited session Friday and is listed as questionable. Coach Gary Kubiak said Thomas is expected to play, but he will be a name to watch Sunday morning. Emmanuel Sanders would be a high-end WR1 and great DFS play if Thomas sits. Evan Mathis (hamstring), Aqib Talib (ankle) and Juwan Thompson (hamstring) are also questionable. DeMarcus Ware (back) and Ty Sambrailo (shoulder) are out.
Chiefs @ Vikings
* Charles Johnson (ribs) is listed as questionable after practicing on a limited basis all week. He and Jarius Wright (probable, hand) are expected to play, but neither are good fantasy options in the Vikings’ slow-paced offense. Andrew Sendejo (knee) is also questionable. Justin Trattou (foot) is out.
* Tamba Hali (questionable) did not practice Thursday and Friday with swelling in his knee. Coach Andy Reid said he should be “Ok." 2014 first-rounder Dee Ford will fill in if Hali sits. Josh Mauga (groin/Achilles) and Dontari Poe (ankle) are out.
Texans @ Jaguars
* T.J. Yeldon (questionable) did not practice all week with a groin injury. Coach Gus Bradley said Yeldon will be a game-time decision, and the rookie back said he has a “strong possibility” of playing. Denard Robinson (probable) is expected to return from his knee injury, and he should lead a timeshare with Toby Gerhart if Yeldon sits. Blake Bortles (probable, shoulder) practiced in full all week. He is a solid start against a vulnerable Texans’ pass defense. James Sample (shoulder) is doubtful, and Marqise Lee (hamstring) and Bernard Pierce (concussion/hamstring) are out.
* Nate Washington (hamstring) is out and Jaelen Strong (illness) is questionable, but Cecil Shorts (probable, shoulder) is expected to return. Alfred Blue (toe), Jared Crick (knee) and Brian Peters (hamstring) are questionable. Jadeveon Clowney (ankle) and Quintin Demps (hamstring) are out.
Redskins @ Jets
* Bilal Powell (groin) got in limited practices all week and is listed as questionable. Chris Ivory (probable, quad) would see an even bigger workload if Powell sits. Eric Decker (knee) is probable. Willie Colon (knee) and David Harris (quad) are questionable. Jaiquawn Jarrett (knee), Chris Owusu (knee) and Marcus Williams (hamstring) are doubtful.
* DeSean Jackson reportedly felt a “twinge” in his hamstring in practice Thursday, but he was back at it Friday and is listed as questionable. Jamison Crowder would be an interesting PPR option if Jackson misses another week. Matt Jones (questionable, toe) was at practice Friday, but he was listed as a non-participant. It is a very bad sign for his availability. In a terrible matchup with a banged-up offensive line – Trent Williams (concussion/neck) and Kory Lichtensteiger (shoulder/finger/neck) are out – Jones does not need to be started anywhere. Alfred Morris could get a big workload if Jones sits, but he faces the same offensive line and matchup problems. Jordan Reed (concussion) is out indefinitely. Stephen Paea (back) and Andre Roberts (quad) are questionable. Chris Culliver (knee) and DeAngelo Hall (toe) are out.
Dolphins @ Titans
* Taylor Lewan (shoulder) and Chance Warmack (knee) are both probable. Perrish Cox (hamstring), Anthony Fasano (concussion), Sammie Hill (knee/illness) and Avery Williamson (hamstring) are questionable.
Panthers @ Seahawks
* Marshawn Lynch (hamstring) is listed as questionable, but coach Pete Carroll said he “looked back to full health.” He is fully expected to play, and he should see a full workload against the Panthers. Bobby Wagner (pectoral) missed practice Wednesday and Thursday, but he was able to get in a limited session Friday. He is questionable. Demarcus Dobbs (shoulder) and Brock Coyle (knee) are questionable. Jordan Hill (quad), Tye Smith (hip), Frank Clark (hamstring) and Nick Moody (ankle) are doubtful.
* Luke Kuechly (probable) will return after missing three games with a concussion. Amini Silatolu (ankle) is questionable. Richie Brockel (hamstring) is doubtful. Jared Allen (back), Daryl Williams (knee) and A.J. Klein (concussion) will sit.
Chargers @ Packers
* Davante Adams (questionable, ankle) said he is “not sure” if he will play. He was limited in every practice this week, but he is more on the doubtful side of questionable. James Jones (hamstring) and Randall Cobb (shoulder) are probable. Morgan Burnett (calf) and LaDarius Gunter (heel) are questionable. Nick Perry (shoulder/hand) and B.J. Raji (groin) are doubtful.
* The Chargers’ offensive line is once again in disarray. King Dunlap (concussion) and Chris Watt (groin/concussion) are out, and Orlando Franklin (ankle), D.J. Fluker (ankle) and Chris Hairston (ankle) are questionable. The Packers have the second-most sacks in the league with 20. They should add to the total this week. Stevie Johnson (hamstring) is doubtful, meaning Ladarius Green should once again play a role in the passing game. Manti Te’o (ankle) is questionable. Craig Mager (hamstring), Darius Philon (hip/thigh) and Tourek Williams (foot) are out.
Ravens @ 49ers
* Carlos Hyde (foot) is questionable, but coach Jim Tomsula said he is fully expected to play. Vernon Davis (knee) was limited all week and is listed as questionable. He should play, but he is not a great fantasy option. Reggie Bush (calf) is doubtful. Ahmad Brooks (non-injury related), Bruce Ellington (calf), Eli Harold (knee) and Brandon Thomas (ankle) are questionable.
* Justin Forsett (ankle) was able to practice on a limited basis Friday and is listed as questionable. He is tentatively expected to play, but he should be handcuffed with Buck Allen where possible. Steve Smith (questionable, back) said he is unlikely to play. Kamar Aiken should once again lead the team in targets. Crockett Gillmore (questionable, calf) should also return to help carry the load. Chris Givens (ankle), Elvis Dumervil (thigh) and Marshal Yanda (ankle) are questionable. Lardarius Webb (thigh) is doubtful. Chris Canty (calf), Breshad Perriman (knee) and Darren Waller (concussion) are out.
Patriots @ Colts
* Andrew Luck (questionable, shoulder) got in a full practice Friday and is finally expected to make his return. Luck playing is a big upgrade for T.Y. Hilton (probable, groin), Donte Moncrief and the rest of the Colts’ passing options. Jerrell Freeman (groin) and Nate Irving (knee) are questionable.
* Dion Lewis (questionable, abdomen) popped up on the injury report Thursday and was limited Friday. He is expected to play, but his owners should line up a backup plan just in case. Dont’a Hightower (ribs) and Trey Flowers (knee/shoulder) are also questionable. Tarell Brown (foot) is out.
Giants @ Eagles
* Ryan Mathews popped up on the injury report Friday with a groin injury. It would be concerning if he misses practice again Saturday. Nelson Agholor (ankle) should sit out this week. Josh Huff should get more looks with Agholor sidelined. Kiko Alonso (knee), Mychal Kendricks (hamstring) and Brandon Bair (groin) are also likely out.
* Odell Beckham (hamstring) did not practice Thursday or Friday. He has reportedly looked good working on a side field, and coach Tom Coughlin has said Beckham can play without getting in any practice. Even so, it would be comforting if he could get some work at the final practice of the week. Rueben Randle (hamstring) should play, and he and Dwayne Harris would take on bigger workloads if Beckham sits. Prince Amukamara (pectoral) has already been ruled out for Monday.