Week 12: Game Time Decisions - Injury Updates
Emmanuel Sanders suffered a right foot injury in the first half of the week 11 win over Detroit and did not return. Head coach Mike Tomlin expects Sanders to start against Cleveland, but he remains listed as questionable. The 26-year-old SMU alum is averaging 51 yards per game with just two touchdowns. Sanders had just five touchdowns over his first three NFL seasons and remains just a lower end WR3 option this week against a solid Browns' defense allowing the sixth fewest fantasy PPG to wide receivers. On a positive note for Sanders owners, shutdown CB Joe Haden will likely lockup with Antonio Brown, so Big Ben might be forced to increase the targets for Sanders in week 12. Keep an eye on Jerricho Cotchery (five touchdowns over the past three weeks) and rookie Marcus Wheaton if Sanders is unable to go this week.
Jordan Reed (concussion) did not practice Wednesday and with a Monday night matchup against San Francisco, his owners should secure a backup plan as the rookie from Florida will need to pass league concussion protocol in order to suit up. Reed owners would be wise to target the waiver wire as Garrett Graham, Rob Housler and Delanie Walker could be serviceable week 12 replacements. For Washington, they might be forced to activate veteran Fred Davis, but he remains off the fantasy radar. Through nine games, Reed is averaging 55 yards per game with three touchdowns. His absence would be a negative for RG3's fantasy value in a difficult matchup with a 49er defense allowing the fifth lowest fantasy PPG to quarterbacks. The San Fran defense is also stingy against tight ends as they allow the fourth lowest fantasy PPG -- including just three touchdowns to the position on the season.
Julius Thomas had three catches for 43 yards and a touchdown in Week 11 against the Chiefs (first touchdown the Chiefs have allowed to a tight end all season). The third year TE from Portland State took a helmet to the knee in the third quarter, but remained in the game. He missed Wednesday's practice, but is expected to play on Sunday night against a Patriots defense allowing the 11th fewest fantasy PPG to opposing tight ends. Thomas is averaging 59 yards per game with 10 touchdowns through the first 10 games of the season. He's a must start provided he returns to practice this week. Former Texan Joel Dreesen is battling a knee injury, but would likely start if Thomas suffers a setback. Dreesen is not fantasy relevant.