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The “Never Again” List

“After recovering from offseason surgery, Darren McFadden has been looking great in training camp. The Lisfranc injury he had to his foot seems far behind him now. `We’ve been seeing Darren make all the right cuts and he has his explosive burst back,” Coach Hue Jackson said.

“It’s great to see him on the field again,” Coach Schwartz said, “he’s such an explosive playmaker, every time he puts the football in his hands, we know there’s a good chance he can take it to the house.” For his part, Jahvid Best has never felt better physically, “I feel like a new man out there. The concussions are a thing of the past. My goal is to be healthy for the rest of the season and break some records along the way.”

“The key thing for me has been staying out of trouble and just getting my body healthy again and ready for the regular season.” Kenny Britt said as he lifted weights in the Titans’ training facility. “My ACL is completely healed and I’ve never felt better. I’m ready to be the best wide receiver in football. This is going to be my year. I promise you that.”

Had enough, my friends? I just wanted to give everyone a preview of the kind of stories you’ll be reading next summer as you prepare for the 2012 draft. Every offseason is the same in that two things always happen. The first thing is that there is an avalanche of positive stories about once injured superstars, who are now ready to make a glorious comeback. The second thing is that most owners suffer from collective amnesia over the past injuries of injury-prone football players.

I’m writing this article now, while all of those injuries are still fresh in owner’s minds, before we all get brainwashed again by super positive offseason articles. I’ve made a “Never Again” list of players owners should avoid in 2012. All of these players are extremely talented and loaded with potential…to get hurt and doom the seasons of owners, who take a chance on them.

Andre Johnson

As we approach Week 15, Andre Johnson has only played in six games thus far. If you include the game against Pittsburgh where he had his first hamstring injury and left the game in the 1st half, he’s really only played in five full games. Think about that for a moment. For a player universally drafted in the 1st round, the fact that Andre Johnson has only produced for owners in five out of 15 games makes him arguably the biggest bust in fantasy football this year. After all, at least Chris Johnson is now producing at the most crucial point of fantasy football seasons.

Throughout his career, Andre Johnson has fought through injuries but he’s always managed to tough it out and play for owners. This year has been a completely different story as AJ hasn’t been able to get over various hamstring injuries and has sabotaged the season of almost all the owners who spent a 1st round pick on him.

The final slap in the face of AJ owners is occurring now with news that AJ may return in Week 17, after most fantasy football seasons are over.  At the age of 30, AJ no longer seems able to stay healthy and owners should steer clear of spending a high draft pick on him in the 2012 season.

Jahvid Best

Jahvid Best has been suffering from concussions for his entire football career, dating back to his college days.  He’s had three concussions in the last three years and every medical specialist that he’s been to has told him to stop playing football this season.  For Best’s longterm health, I would recommend to him that he stop playing football altogether. 

Even though the Lions finally shutdown his season and put him on injured reserve, Best still has high hopes of playing in 2012.  Best’s most recent quotes on his concussion situation offer nothing but optimism, “We took a cautious approach and by this time next year it won’t be like the concussions this year affect me getting a concussion next year,” Best said. “There’ll be so much time between them that it’ll be like I have a clean slate.”

Concussions are a very serious issue and it feels wrong to talk about them from a fantasy football perspective, which is comparatively unimportant, but for the purposes of this article, talk about them I shall.  Best was only able to play six games this year, due in large part to his many concussions.  He is one of the most injury prone players in fantasy football and to think that will change in 2012 is a big mistake owners should avoid.  No matter what Best or any positive offseason reports say, he is to be avoided in all leagues going forward.

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