Our apologies to the fantasy football owners who had New York Jets quarterback Aaron Rodgers, Baltimore Ravens running back JK Dobbins and Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb on their rosters heading into the NFL fantasy football season.
Chubb joins Rodgers and Dobbins as big-name players who will miss the rest of the season. There was a report that Rodgers could have a chance to play again this season. That seems to be little more than wishful thinking right now.
Those making NFL picks probably noticed that the options on the waiver wire have already started to dwindle, especially in 12-team leagues.
When it comes to the NFL odds, defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City (+700) is tied with the Philadelphia Eagles and San Francisco 49ers in the odds to win the Super Bowl. Buffalo (+1000) and Dallas (+1000) aren’t far behind.
We will be keeping tabs on the fantasy football landscape each week heading into the Thursday night games, so feel free to follow along. Week 3 begins with the New York Giants heading to play the San Francisco 49ers (2-0) on Thursday night.
Another Big Name to IR
It looks like it is going to be one of the years.
With the news that Nick Chubb of the Cleveland Browns is out for the season and Saquon Barkley has been ruled out against San Francisco on Thursday night as a result of an ankle injury, four of the top running backs selected in many fantasy football drafts could miss this week.
There have been no new developments when it comes to Austin Ekeler of the Los Angeles Chargers or Aaron Jones of the Green Bay Packers after both missed last week’s games. Those taking part in online NFL betting need to be monitoring the practice reports.
A quick look at the top-scoring running backs in points-per-reception (PPR) leagues, Kyren Williams is second only to San Francisco’s Christian McCaffrey while Washington’s Brian Robinson and Buffalo’s James Cook are also in the top 10. Who could have predicted that?
Derrick Henry of the Tennessee Titans is dealing with a toe injury and that is not great news.
Tampa Bay placed Chase Edmonds on injured reserve, and with the number of younger backs on the roster for the Buccaneers, his window could be closing.
Two major developments this week were the trade of running back Cam Akers from the Los Angeles Rams to the Minnesota Vikings and the signing of Kareem Hunt by the Cleveland Browns after Chubb’s injury.
We’ve signed RB Kareem Hunt. Welcome Back!
— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) September 20, 2023
Minnesota is last in the NFL in rushing yards so let’s see if the addition of Akers might result in the Vikings actually calling running plays. It could hurt the value of AlexanderMattison and he was already trending in the wrong direction.
Pass Catchers On the Mend
Barkley is not the only prominent player who could miss the Thursday night game.
San Francisco receiver Brandon Aiyuk could also be held out. Keep an eye on the updates regarding his shoulder injury. With a short week, it is not a great time for one of the team’s top offensive players to be dealing with this type of injury.
Detroit receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown didn’t practice on Wednesday so that is something to monitor.
Miami’s Tyreek Hill, the top scorer in fantasy football through two weeks, was a limited participant at Wednesday’s practice with an ankle injury.
Jakobi Meyers of the Las Vegas Raiders didn’t play in Week 2 due to a concussion after a huge Week 1 performance.
Seattle’s DK Metcalf is another big-name receiver slowed by injury right now.
There was some good news as Baltimore Ravens tight end Mark Andrews is no longer on the injury report. However, receiver Odell Beckham Jr. replaced him as a pass catcher for the Ravens with injury concerns.
Week 2 Surprises
After a dreadful Week 1 performance, New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones bounced back in a major way as he was the top scorer in Week 2 with 321 passing yards and two TD passes to go with 59 rushing yards and another score as the Giants rallied to beat Arizona.
Keenan Allen of the Los Angeles Chargers was the top-scoring receiver in PPR leagues followed by rookie Puka Nacua of the Rams, Mike Evans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Cincinnati’s Tee Higgins.
Quick: A show of hands of those who had Washington’s Brian Robinson as the No. 1 scoring running back coming into the week. Kyren Williams wasn’t far behind.
What About the Rookies?
The big news regarding the rookie class is that the top three quarterbacks selected in April’s draft are all showing up on the injury list.
No. 1 overall pick Bryce Young of the Carolina Panthers missed practice on Wednesday with an ankle injury.
No. 2 pick C.J. Stroud, who leads all rookies with 626 passing yards after a 384-yard effort in Week 2, was limited in practice on Wednesday with a shoulder issue.
No. 4 pick Anthony Richardson of the Indianapolis Colts is second only to Los Angeles Rams receiver Nacua among rookie scorers this season. He is working his way back from a concussion. Keep tabs on their progress as that could impact the odds on NFL games this week.
Receiver Nathaniel Dell of the Houston Texans is slowed by a thigh injury after a strong showing in Week 2.
Keep an eye on the injury to Detroit Lions running back David Montgomery, which could create more opportunities for rookie Jahmyr Gibbs. Those owners frustrated by the way Atlanta Falcons running back Bijan Robinson was used in Week 1 should be feeling a little better after Week 2.
The top four players when it comes to solo tackles among rookies are defensive backs, with fourth-round pick Jakorian Bennett of the Las Vegas Raiders leading the way.
Byron Young of the Los Angeles Rams, a third-round selection, is the leader with 1½ sacks.
The highest 2023 draft pick yet to appear in a game is Tennessee quarterback Will Levis, the No. 33 selection. He is followed by No. 44 pick Julius Brents, a defensive back for Indianapolis.
Working the Wire
Kareem Hunt was the obvious must-add player heading into Week 3 while Matt Breida of the New York Giants is another popular player on the waiver wire due to Barkley’s injury.
With Barkley’s history as a quick healer, Breida may not have a lot of staying power as a plug-and-play option in place of Barkley. Jerome Ford looked more than capable of handling the lead back role for Cleveland in Week 2.
Detroit running back Craig Reynolds has also been a popular waiver target due to the situation with Montgomery.
With perhaps the best set of receivers to throw to, there are those taking a chance on Cincinnati quarterback Jake Browning while Joe Burrow (calf) gets healthy.