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Top Players Returning From Injury That Need To Be Monitored



Top guys returning from injury that need monitoring 
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Evan Engram
Engram has not been able to stay healthy in any of his three NFL seasons, only managing to play in eight games last season due to a Lisfranc injury. This significant foot injury required surgery in the off-season and Engram is not 100% yet. When on the field Engram has top-five tight end potential, the problem is he has not been able to stay healthy. The Giants have some talented weapons this year for Daniel Jones to throw to, and Engram should be a large part of this offense assuming that he can regain the mobility that he lost secondary to this injury. Recent video is very supportive of his recovery and he looked impressive. He needs to avoid setbacks and if he does he will be a steal in 2020.
Preston Williams
Coming off an impressive, rather unexpected rookie season that was cut short due to a torn ACL, Williams has a chance to return as one of the main targets for the Dolphins. As an undrafted free agent, Williams was dominant over DeVante Parker when they shared time together in early 2019 season. Parker finally broke out after Williams’ season-ending injury. Williams suffered the injury in early November, which puts him approximately 10 months out from his surgery. For a wide receiver it is possible for him to return and look very close to pre-injury form if he can avoid any setbacks. Think Cooper Kupp in 2019. If he suffers any setbacks he may be put on the PUP list which could derail his 2020 season.
Williams’ importance has been further exacerbated by multiple wide receivers on the Dolphins choosing to opt out of the 2020 season, including slot wide receivers Albert Wilson and Allen Hurns. This likely means that DeVante Parker, Williams, Mike Gesicki and Isaiah Ford will be the main targets for the Dolphins.
A.J. Green
Now on the wrong side of 30, Green has really struggled to stay healthy the past couple of years. An elite top 20 receiver when he’s healthy, Green suffered a significant foot and ankle injury in early pre-season last year and was never able to return. Presumably 100% heading into 2020, it remains to be seen how much gas he has left in the tank. While I’m not overly concerned about his foot/ankle, overall his health is definitely concerning. Green has strong bounce-back potential if he can stay healthy, especially with the number one pick throwing him the ball.
Chris Carson 
Chris Carson has been an underrated asset for the Seattle Seahawks for a couple years now. Not only has he been successful in finding the endzone but his volume has been impressive as well. Unfortunately he suffered a significant hip injury last year that has people worried and for the good reason. Although the specifics have not been revealed, I can deduce from the fact that he did not have surgery and they called his hip injury a ‘fracture,‘ it means that he had a stress fracture. This is very concerning.
In someone of this age, and at his position I am very concerned about his hip and risk of re-injury. The risk of re-fracture is significantly high and I feel that whole he may be alright early in the season, as the months grind on the stress of repetitive pounding is likely going to cause a repeat injury. Something that could be potentially detrimental to his career. I’m concerned and staying away.
Cam Newton
Cam Newton has struggled to stay healthy the past couple of years. Early on his career he was a monster, keeping defenses honest predominantly with his legs. However the repeat throwing shoulder injuries have caused a significant decline, and last year’s foot injury stopped his season in its tracks. While I am not concerned about the foot injury any more after he had surgery, his throwing shoulder is a completely different story.
Newton has had two different surgeries on the rotator cuff of his throwing shoulder. A group of four muscles that is not only integral to our daily lives but vital in the throwing motion. If the rotator cuff is damaged then even lifting your arms out in front is painful. Cam has never had very good accuracy and over the past couple of years not been able to throw the deep ball well. Look for McDaniels to tailor a short and intermediate offense to suit Newton’s strengths. This likely means targets for James White, Julian Edelman, Mohamed Sanu, and potential breakout N’Keal Harry. I’m not sure what the Patriots have up their sleeve in terms of having the most opt-outs out of any team in the NFL but they will likely use that salary cap relief to strengthen the team. Don’t sleep on Cam and the Patriots.
Ben Roethlisberger 
Big Ben’s 2018 season was very impressive. I don’t think the Steelers have the personnel to repeat that season, but they should look significantly better in 2020 than in the latter half of 2019. Big Ben underwent Tommy John surgery, reconstruction of the ligament in the elbow commonly seen in baseball pitchers.
Extremely rare for quarterbacks, I fully expect Ben to come back with his throwing motion 100%, and likely have better velocity and maybe even rejuvenated after having to rework on proper mechanics in the off-season. I expect Juju to have a fantastic bounce-back season with Big Ben back, and I am quite high on Diontae Johnson as the Steelers #2 as well. Don’t worry about his elbow.
Derrius Guice
This could potentially be a make or break year for the super talented running back who’s dealt with knee injuries the past couple of seasons. After returning from an ACL tear on one knee, he suffered a significant tear in his meniscus on the other knee. Due to his aggressive running style, the amount of torque and stress placed on his knees is always going to be an issue. The question is if he is able to stay healthy enough and avoid any further injuries to demonstrate his impressive skills on the field. If not veteran Adrian Peterson and fellow returning ACL-repair RB Bryce Love along with rookie Antonio Gibson may take over the backfield.
Marquise Brown
Brown added approximately 23 pounds of muscle in the off-season, and is currently at a weight of 180 pounds, much larger than he has ever played before. Brown is returning off of a successful rookie season, but he played the entirety of that season with a screw in his foot. This screw was removed this off-season and look for him to be even more explosive and hopefully be able to withstand the rigors of the NFL season with the added muscle and appropriate off-season training. If everything comes together, this could be a breakout season for the Lamar Jackson’s number one wide receiver.

Jesse A Morse, MD is a fellowship-trained sports medicine doctor practicing in Miami, Florida. He specializes in Regenerative medicine, musculoskeletal ultrasound, fractures and, non-surgical orthopedics. Dr. Morse treats professional athletes regularly and understands their mindset and how to get them back on the field. Born and raised in Worcester, Massachusetts, Dr. Morse grew up watching the Larry Bird led Boston Celtics, the Wade Boggs and Pedro Martinez led Boston Red Sox, and then the Tom Brady led Patriots win multiple championships. Dr. Morse has served on the medical staff of multiple professional teams, including the Philadelphia Phillies, Toronto Blue Jays, and the Miami Marlins. In his spare time, Dr. Morse loves exercising, sports cars, and playing fantasy sports/DFS.


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Waiver Wire: NFL Week 14



Fantasy football teams are starting to take shape. Hitting the waiver wire is a critical task in filling the holes or adding significant depth, especially as we enter bye-weeks and an increasing list of injuries. My goal is to find you the best player available for the lowest owned percentage. Therefore, you will see some of the more prominent names under others to consider.


Philip RiversIND (ESPN-16.5%) (Yahoo-40%)

Rivers has averaged at least 292 passing yards and two touchdowns in his last six games, and he just feels short of theaverage against Houston with 285 yards and two scores. In the next two weeks, the Colts will face Las Vegas, who allows over 20 Fantasy Points Per Game to quarterbacks, and Houston. Getting Rivers will bring you a top streaming signal-caller for two-straight weeks.

Others to Consider: Jalen Hurts (PHI), Mitchell Trubisky(CHI), Sam Darnold (NYJ), Tua Tagovailoa (MIA), Baker Mayfield (CLE).


Running Backs:

Cam Akers-LAR (ESPN-35.8%) (Yahoo-53%)

Akers has seen an increase in snaps over the last few weeks, and he may have full ownership after his 21 carries for 72 yards while catching a pass for another 22 yards and a score. Both Malcolm Brown and Darrell Henderson will have a role, but Akers should be the bell-cow. The Rams tried him at the goal line on several attempts, but he couldn’t punch it in. Rams face the Patriots and Jets in the next few weeks, and both teams he should exploit for good fantasy performances.

Cordarrelle Patterson-CHI (ESPN-4.8%) (Yahoo-7%)

Patterson has become a running back, and he fits the role well. David Montgomery will be the bell-cow when healthy, but Patterson has gotten extensive looks. Against the Lions, Patterson carried the rock 10 times for 59 yards and a touchdown. Patterson has spent his career as a receiver; therefore, catching the ball is no issue. The Bears have Houston this week, and they are horrible against the run.

Ty Johnson-NYJ (ESPN-0.3%) (Yahoo-2%)

The ancient one Frank Gore was the Jets bell-cow until he suffered a concussion. Enter Johnson, who rushed 22 times for 104 yards and a score. Johnson showed promise and someone who deserves more of a look. He will face the Seahawks and Rams next, but he is of good value this late in the season.

Others to Consider: Peyton Barber (WAS), Phillip Lindsay(DEN), Gus Edwards (BAL), Carlos Hyde (SEA), Jeff Wilson(SF), Ito Smith (ATL), Benny Snell (PIT), Adrian Peterson(DET).


Wide Receivers:

T.Y. Hilton-IND (ESPN-47.0%) (Yahoo-45%)

Through 11-weeks, Hilton was sitting on the garbage pile. Then against the Titans, he caught his first touchdown on the season to go along with four receptions for 81 yards. It got even better against the Texans as Hilton brought in 8 balls on 11 targets for 110 yards and a score. He is looking more and more like the stud we drafted him to be. Now the Colts face the Raiders and Texans in back-to-back weeks.

Jalen Guyton-LAC (ESPN-0.3%) (Yahoo-0%)

Guyton was on speed-dial for Justin Herbert. He targeted his receiver seven times, and Guyton brought in two for 38 yards. Fantasy owners may wonder how Guyton can be valuable with Mike Williams, but looking at the numbers and there isn’t much difference. On the season, Guyton has 20-369-3 while Williams stat line 36-572-4 in 11 games. That is just one reception and 18-yards more on average. The Chargers have Atlanta and Las Vegas next, which are prime spots for exploitation.

Rashard Higgins-CLE (ESPN-3.4%) (Yahoo-8%)

Higgins is the one that looks to be the number two receiver, and he lit up the Titans last week for six receptions, 95 yards, and a touchdown. Higgins has deep speed and will make plays downfield. The schedule will be tough next week against Baltimore, but the Giants and Jets could be an easy route for teams in the playoffs and championship.

Others to Consider: Tim Patrick (DEN), Keke Coutee (HOU), Sterling Shepard (NYG), Nelson Agholor (LAS), DenzilMims (NYJ), Breshad Perriman (NYJ), Gabriel Davis (BUF), Allen Lazard (GB).


Tight Ends:

Logan Thomas-WFT (ESPN-24.9%) (Yahoo-40%)

The Washington Football Team likes to target Thomas, which was prevalent against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Monday Afternoon Football. Thomas brought in nine balls for 98 yards and a touchdown on nine targets. Even outside this performance, he is getting at least four targets each game. Thomas has another tough performance next week against San Francisco, but the Seahawks and Panthers are scheduled for Weeks 15 and 16.

Others to Consider: Jordan Reed (SF), Cole Kmet (CHI), Anthony Firsker (TEN), Dalton Schultz (DAL), Kyle Rudolph (MIN), Jacob Hollister (SEA), Jordan Akins(HOU).

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