I’m not sure if any team this year has suffered a more heartbreaking loss than the Washington Redskins on Sunday. With a 15-point lead and less than six minutes to go, the Redskins saw their playoff hopes quashed by Drew Brees and the Saints, who came back to win in overtime. But Washington didn’t just lose the game — they lost breakout star running back Chris Thompson for the season. Thompson, who was taken in the very late rounds of most fantasy drafts, has been incredible this year, so it’s reasonable to wonder how the Redskins and fantasy owners will be able to move forward without him. That’s what we’re here for. Here’s what we know about all of this week’s major injuries (including Thompson’s) along with the fantasy impact:
Chris Thompson, RB, Washington Redskins
Thompson left Sunday’s game against the Saints with a right leg injury in the third quarter. His leg got pinned under a Saints defender as he was caught in the crossfire of a Kirk Cousins run. He was given an air cast and carted to the locker room. After the game, Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said that Thompson suffered a fractured fibula and will require surgery.
This is a tough break for Thompson, whose stellar season will now be cut short. With Thompson out and Rob Kelley on IR, fourth-round rookie Samaje Perine received the bulk of the workload, rushing for an impressive 117 yards on 23 carries. Perine struggled mightily early in the season, but he displayed some newfound patience on Sunday, which is hopefully a sign of things to come. With a solid game under his belt and a huge workload incoming, Perine is on the FLEX radar with RB2 upside going forward. Pick him up if he’s available on your waiver wire.
Quarterback Kirk Cousins should also be slightly downgraded. Although Cousins had one of his best statistical games on Sunday, Thompson’s 510 receiving yards and four receiving touchdowns will be sorely missed for the remainder of the season. Cousins’ talent and grit are keeping him in the QB1 tier, but the team around him has really struggled to stay healthy. Feel free to continue rolling with Cousins, but don’t be afraid to bench him in a bad matchup if you have another fringe starting option.
Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Buffalo Bills
Benjamin left Sunday’s game against the Chargers with a right knee injury in the first quarter. He took a low hit from Chargers safety Adrian Phillips and his knee got bent awkwardly. He was helped off the field and eventually carted to the locker room. He did not return to the game.
Benjamin’s career in Buffalo is off to an inauspicious start, and now it appears that he may miss time. Although the Bills have not given any indication of the severity of Benjamin’s injury, the fact that he was ruled out in the first quarter certainly puts his future availability in question. If Benjamin does miss playing time, it’s difficult to recommend any Bills pass-catcher, regardless of who is playing quarterback. With Benjamin and Jordan Matthews both ailing, Deonte Thompson and Zay Jones would be the presumptive starting wideouts, although neither player should be rostered in anything but extremely deep leagues.
D’Onta Foreman, RB, Houston Texans
Foreman left Sunday’s game against the Cardinals with a leg injury in the fourth quarter. He was tripped up at the end of a 34-yard touchdown run, and he remained on the ground while he grabbed his lower leg. He was eventually carted off the field, and multiple sources have reported that the injury is believed to be a torn Achilles. Foreman will receive an MRI today to confirm the diagnosis.
This was an unfortunate end to Foreman’s best game of the year, as he accumulated a season-high 65 rushing yards and two touchdowns on just 10 carries. With Foreman likely out for the season, starting running back Lamar Miller will continue to be a high-end RB2, while fourth-year man Alfred Blue will now serve as Miller’s backup. With a career 3.6 yards per carry, Blue has been a fairly unexciting option in Houston’s backfield rotation, so he should remain on the waiver wire unless you’re looking to handcuff Miller in a league with a deep bench.