Fantasy Injuries with Stephania Bell
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday, fantasy injury expert Stephania Bell will stop by to chat all things injury related. If you have a question on any athletes' sprains, breaks, tears, any injury related question, ask Stephania!
Bell is a physical therapist who is a board-certified orthopedic clinical specialist as well as being a certified strength and conditioning specialist. She is a clinician, author and teacher with extensive experience in sports medicine. An avid fantasy player, Bell spent time at Rotowire.com and on XM Radio's fantasy sports show before joining ESPN.
Bell earned her undergraduate degree from Princeton and her Master's in physical therapy from the University of Miami. A native of San Francisco, Bell roots shamelessly for the 49ers and Giants.
Send your questions now and join Bell Tuesday at 3 p.m. ET!
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Stephania Bell (3:05 PM)
Depressing week of injuries. At least there is some good news to report this afternoon. Jermichael Finley to be released from hospital within 24 hours, per Ed Werder.
Good Afternoon Stephania! Always appreciate the good work you do, and it looks like the mountain of serious injuries will be keeping you busy for awhile. I'm in a 2 QB league and although I was one of the unfortunate Cutler owners (he was filling in for Brees), I was planning to drop him this week anyway and pickup a bye-week fill-in for Luck. Question is...who do I pickup between Alex Smith and Terrell Prior? Thinking Smith has the most likely 'steady' point opportunities, while Prior has more upside (plus a nicer ROS schedule if I should keep him in case Brees/Luck get hurt). What are your thoughts? Thanks and keep up the great work!
Stephania Bell (3:07 PM)
Bob: Thanks very much. I like Pryor for the upside. Smith is generally consistent but not exciting (trust me, as a Niners fan). And while he doesn't turn the ball over much, it does happen. Think you get more potential with Pryor.
Steven (California) [via mobile]
Lots of speculation out there on Doug Martin. Whats the latest news and what do you think is his best case scenario?
Stephania Bell (3:12 PM)
Steven: I know. And it's all over the map. This is a tough one from a distance b/c a labral tear carries a wide range of possibilities depending on where it is in the labrum and the extent of the injury.A lot depends on whether he's unstable - or at least whether his shoulder is unstable. The good news is he doesn't have to reach overhead all the time but he does have to take hits and land on that shoulder. We are all in wait and see but I wouldn't be dumping him just yet. This week though, Thursday night game, get Mike James.
From one woman to another, who is the safer waiver wire pick-up, Steven Jackson or Mike James? Also does James Jones play this week?
Stephania Bell (3:13 PM)
Paige: James is safer, as in you know he's going to play. Jackson reportedly back in practice but last week Smith said he would not go full practice right away. Not convinced he's back this week. Jones is a question mark until at least Weds. And then the team wants to see what he does. If not this week sounds like they hope he's back by next week.
What are your thoughts on DeMarco Murray as a trade prospect? I'm considering trying to buy low on him.
Stephania Bell (3:14 PM)
DL: Good idea. He could be back this week. Underrated. And with so many RBs going down with injury, he's a guy to have.
Did Gronk come out of Sunday's game unscathed?
Stephania Bell (3:15 PM)
Steve: As far as we know. Expect he'll see the same workload or more this week.
Big Tone (New york)
Hey Stephania. What's the latest on Jimmy Graham? Do you think he'll play on Sunday and what can we expect?
Stephania Bell (3:17 PM)
Big Tone: Uncertainty. And I think the Saints like it that way, meaning keeping all of us uncertain. The hope was that the bye would be enough. It might not be. When they thought it wasn't serious, it probably means they were relieved it didn't look like a season-ending or at least multi-week Lisfranc injury. But still can be a few weeks to recover. We won't get much more from them until we get deeper into practices.
Geoff (Midtown NY)
I know this is a fluid situation but have you heard any updates on Roddy and what's YOUR opinion of his status?
Stephania Bell (3:19 PM)
Geoff: Nothing yet for this week. I just didn't like the hamstring superimposed on the ankle injury (not to mention the ankle setback). Now that he's broken the career consecutive start streak, let's hope he takes the time to get right. Hard to imagine he's back this week when he was limping last week.
Every time I see CJ Spiller make a Spiller-like move, he ends up limping badly at the end of the play... what's your opinion on the smartest way to manage him both in my fantasy squad and real-life NFL?
Stephania Bell (3:22 PM)
DL: Your observations are correct. It's tough to real-life manage these injuries. Not so serious to keep them sidelined (can you imagine the criticism he would get if he sat out with this injury when he technically can do some stuff?) but problematic enough that it's limiting. Actually think the medical staff is doing a good job in a tough situation. As is the player. But for fantasy? Nightmare. Never know what you're getting. Still think he's hard to bench, especially in deeper league unless you have another top-15 RB.
Ha, do you really expect us to believe a chick knows more about fantasy football?
Stephania Bell (3:23 PM)
This is what I get to deal with on a regular basis. Bye, Oliver.
Arian Foster will miss __ weeks with this hamstring issue? Your best guess of course.
Stephania Bell (3:24 PM)
Brendan: Not convinced yet that he does miss. They have a bye - luckily for him. And Foster has a history of coming back pretty quickly from these things. Not that that is the best advice for him. But unless he is really restricted, I'm not sure he misses time.
Is Vick worth starting at less than 100% given the plus matchup, or is he not worth the risk?
Stephania Bell (3:26 PM)
Drew: I think so. There are no guarantees, of course. But a younger, less wise Vick probably would have played through this before. He has rested, had treatment and seems to be only feeling it (as of last week) with explosive movements). If he's at 80% now (which is what he used as a reference point), then I like his chances of not running crazy Sunday, being able to work within his limits. Maybe takes some of his run game away but it's not like he'll be immobile.
Martin (New York, NY)
DeSean Jackson came out of the game last week after his ankle was stepped on. Should we just assume this is minor?
Stephania Bell (3:27 PM)
Martin: It looked bad when it happened. But there really hasn't been any buzz about anything with him. Have to assume it was minor.
oshow (between a rock and a hard place)
I lost Wayne and probably Finley( can you fill us in on his injury) this week. Is DHB the Wayne replacement and who starts at TE for the Packers now?
Stephania Bell (3:29 PM)
Oshow: I wrote a lengthy piece about Finley for ESPN.com and that's what I'd recommend reading, space here too short to address. I suspect he's not likely to return this season but that's an unknown at this point. DHB, probably although Hilton may be the beneficiary. Quarless expected to start at TE but he's mroe of a blocker than a pass catcher, lacks the fantasy value.
Hello!! I hope your day is going well, but would you trade Fred Jackson and Larry Fitzgerald for AJ Green? Jackson's injury scares me and Carson Palmer just isn't the answer in arizona.
Stephania Bell (3:33 PM)
Kyle: I think you're giving up too much. Fitzgerald has not had a great year and the hamstrings have been a problem (along with the QB), but I think Fitz still has potential in the second half. He is their best receiving threat. I guess the Jackson part of the trade depends on who you have at RB. If you got him fairly deep into your draft (which most people did), you may have two other solid RBs. So as I walk myself through this, I say if you have another RB who qualifies as a worthy RB2, maybe I do the deal.
Griz (The Mountains)
Will Percy Harvin play this week? If not, when?
Stephania Bell (3:35 PM)
Griz: NOt this week. He's just rejoining practice. The team has 3 weeks to activate him...doesn't necessarily mean he plays in 3 weeks, just that he has to be activated. I still think late November/early December. Yes, he could beat that if he continues to amaze. But we'll only find that out as he increases his practice intensity.
Jacobs - does he play this week? Is he better than (can't believe I'm asking this) Hillis?
Stephania Bell (3:36 PM)
David: Tom Coughlin says he has "no idea" whether Jacobs plays or not so how are we to know? It's really murky. Obviously if he's back, it's him but if he stays out, it looks like Hillis over Cox after last night.
Scott (Northglenn, CO)
Last I heard, we won't even know David Wilson's prognosis for a month? Droppable in redrafts?
Stephania Bell (3:37 PM)
Scott: Yes, droppable. Especially with Andre Brown return on the horizon.
Doug Martin Owner (Concerned )
What are your thoughts on Le'Veon Bell ROS? Any sneaky RB waiver picks you would recommend?
Stephania Bell (3:39 PM)
Understand your concern. I like, don't love Bell. There's not much on the waiver wire that hasn't already been claimed. I hear Oakland wants to get the ball into the hands of Marcel Reece more. With the questionable health of DMC and the questionable R Jennings, Reece could present an interesting flex play if they put him in at goal line.
Martin (New York, NY)
If you could stash one of the injured rb's coming back, who would it be: Andre Brown, Shane Vereen, or someone else?
Stephania Bell (3:41 PM)
Martin: I mentioned Brown but I like Vereen a lot because we know he's been able to keep his conditioning up since the injury was to his wrist. And he's due back in Week 11.
As a Rice/Pierce owner, should I just drop Pierce, or would he really be that valuable if Rice goes down? I could probably pick up A.Brown, Vereen, DHB, or J.Reed.
Stephania Bell (3:42 PM)
D: I'd much rather go with Brown/Vereen at RB. Pierce didn't show a ton early in the season. And the Ravens have not been consistent about running, period.
Stephania,Do you expect Amendola to play this weekend? If not is he dropable? He is killing me this year... along with my Patriots.
Stephania Bell (3:44 PM)
Jason: It's just too soon. Latest report out of NE is he's doing well but "no timetable." In his case we need to see if he's able to get back into practice, a component of the concussion progression.
Derek (Chicago, IL)
What's the typical timeline on the Crabtree injury? I am hearing rumors of mid-late November before he plays. Any info regarding the Achille's recovery time?
Stephania Bell (3:46 PM)
Derek: That is his timeline. A word of caution though. They intend to be very careful about bringing him back and not overuse him initially. For fantasy purposes he may not have much value, if any, before playoffs.
Justin (San Diego)
Any word on Nate Burelson? I am in a really deep league with 3 WR slots and I just lost Wayne, grasping at straws.
Stephania Bell (3:48 PM)
Justin: Just saw something saying he hopes to be back by Week 9. That sounds early to me. And maybe he means getting back into practice. Bottom line is I wouldn't be thinking about him being available until late November, despite his optimism. You may have heard, there's a high re-fracture rate with forearms.
thought of locker's health the ROS?
Stephania Bell (3:49 PM)
mark: Well, I thought it was a little risky with him coming back last week but he got through it OK. Now that he's done that, think his risk goes down with each week.
Should I drop cobb for boykin??? Thanks!
Stephania Bell (3:51 PM)
Chris: Cobb can't return until Week 15 and I'm assuming you need help before that. So yes, drop Cobb for Boykin.
John (Los Angeles)
Can Chris Ivory handle 25 carries/week? Are his past injuries the type that are higher-risk for returning, or was the hamstring this year mostly coincidental/bad luck?
Stephania Bell (3:53 PM)
John: Not convinced he can. He has had hamstring issues in the past along with this year. Just in general, he's had injury issues. The more he's on the field, the more exposure so the more risk. Has talent but oft-injured.
Thoughts on Miles Austin going forward? Worth holding on to in a 12-teamer?
Stephania Bell (3:55 PM)
Are you really named Miles too? Sorry, I like Miles Austin. Was pulling hard for him to have an injury-free, big-time season. Alas...not to be. If you have space for a bench player in case someone else goes down, sure. Otherwise, I'd say not.
Hey Stephania,Demarco Murray just got dropped in my league. How long do you expect him to be out? And is he worth picking up?Thanks
Stephania Bell (3:56 PM)
Mark: I'd pick him up now. They're hopeful for this week. If not this week, should be next.
Stephania,What do you think of trading T-Rich and L. Fitz for Spiller and B Marsh? T_rich has been so frustrating, thinking Spiller can get healthy and make a difference. What do you think?
Stephania Bell (3:58 PM)
Shawn: I'd do that trade. You're getting a less than fully healthy Spiller but he's (slowly) moving in the right direction. So, I agree with you. And even without Cutler, Marshall probably better upside at this point.
A lot of people talking about Crabtree, but what are your thoughts on Manningham coming back before him and becoming the #2 in SF?
Stephania Bell (4:00 PM)
Brian: Lot of folks ahve forgotten about Manningham. Had a lot of talent but this was a bad injury. Kind of along the lines of Heath Miller multi-ligament injury. Makes me think his return will be very gradual and I wouldn't expect too much. Don't think he is a threat there.
Stephania, love the work. Sort of a two player question, would you trade Cj Spiller and Terrance williams for RG3 and Percy Harvin? I have tom brady.
Stephania Bell (4:03 PM)
Dave: Not sure I do the deal. Spiller getting healthier and Williams has big upside. NOt as much as Harvin but you won't have him for potentially another month. And you don't really need RG3. I know Brady has been underwhelming but he'll be getting more of his weapons back over next few weeks.
Stephania Bell (4:04 PM)
That's it for me today. Thanks so much for coming by the chat and bringing the excellent questions. Please...stay healthy this week.