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SHOW ME WHERE IT HURTS: Week 15 Injury Fallout

Here’s a list of all the fantasy-relevant Week 15 injuries, along with the fantasy impact:

Chris Godwin, WR, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Godwin left Sunday’s game against the Lions with a left hamstring injury in the third quarter. He suffered the injury while running an out-and-up route, and he stayed down on the field for a minute before walking gingerly to the sideline. He was ultimately carted from the sideline to the locker room, and he was quickly ruled out for the remainder of the game. After the game, Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians told reporters that the injury was “not good.”

Impact

The Buccaneers have not provided an official timetable for Godwin’s injury yet, but the context around the injury suggests that he’s likely to miss one or both of the team’s remaining games. Mike Evans is also likely to remain sidelined with a hamstring injury, which would leave Breshad Perriman as the team’s No. 1 wideout. Perriman’s career has been a massive disappointment thus far, but he has an intriguing combination of size and speed, which he displayed on Sunday by catching five of six targets for 113 yards and three touchdowns. Perriman’s big-play ability appears to be a good fit for Tampa’s vertical passing attack, and that puts him in the top-25 WR conversation if both Evans and Godwin can’t play. It’s hard to trust any other Buccaneers pass-catcher, but the attrition of the team’s wide receiver corps has opened up targets for O.J. Howard, who can once again be considered a top-15 option at tight end.

 

Dalvin Cook, RB, Minnesota Vikings

Cook left Sunday’s game against the Chargers with a shoulder injury in the third quarter. He suffered the injury when linebacker Denzel Perryman tackled him, causing his shoulder to hit the ground. Cook remained on the ground for a bit before walking off the field with his shoulders hunched over. He was examined in the blue medical tent, and he was subsequently ruled out for the rest of the game. After the game, Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer said that he did not know the severity of the injury.

Impact

At this point, it’s unclear if Cook’s injury is severe enough to sideline him in Week 16, so you should keep your eyes open for an update from the Vikings. If Cook is unable to play, then rookie Alexander Mattison would normally be the starter, but Mattison’s availability is also up in the air due to an ankle injury that kept him out on Sunday. If Mattison is healthy and Cook is out, then the rookie would be a top-15 running back in a good matchup against the Packers. If both Cook and Mattison can’t play, then second-year back Mike Boone would most likely lead Minnesota’s backfield. Boone isn’t as exciting as Mattison from a fantasy perspective, but he did play well on Sunday, carrying the ball 13 times for 56 yards and two touchdowns. In this scenario, Boone would be in the top-25 RB discussion, so he is worth a pickup if you need help at the position.

 

J.D. McKissic, RB, Detroit Lions

McKissic left Sunday’s game against the Buccaneers with a stinger in the third quarter, and he did not return to the game. The Lions have not provided any further information on the injury.

Impact

We don’t know much about McKissic’s injury at the moment, so you’ll probably have to monitor Detroit’s practice reports this week to get more information. Currently, several factors — McKissic’s stinger, Bo Scarbrough’s rib injury (which sidelined him on Sunday), and Kerryon Johnson’s eligibility to return from injured reserve — make it impossible to predict what the Lions backfield will look like in Week 16. And when you consider that the Lions have a difficult matchup against the Broncos, it’s hard to trust anyone in Detroit’s backfield. Johnson is an undeniably good player, but we have no idea if the team would give him significant touches even if he is activated from injured reserve, which makes him a high-risk, high-reward flex option if he plays. If Johnson doesn’t play but Scarbrough does, then the latter can be considered a high-floor, low-ceiling top-35 RB. If neither Johnson nor Scarbrough plays, then you should stay away from this backfield, regardless of McKissic’s status.

About Jay Devineni

A journalist by trade, Jay is in St. Louis and still a loyal Rams fan. He earned a Master's Degree in Journalism from Columbia University and is a published sports writer.