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December 23, 1:21 PM ET
Fantasy league injuries w/Stephania Bell

Stephania Bell
  (11:07 AM)

Happy Tuesday Sports Nation: Who out there is still vying for a championship? Definitely a tricky week with injuries and some teams resting their starters...let's see what questions you have this morning...

Jarrod (Austin,TX)

So, Matt Forte's slow start really scared me, but he made up for it in the fourth quarter. Is his toe OK for week 17?

Stephania Bell
  (11:10 AM)

Jarrod: As long as a player improves as the game goes on, then you have to take that has a positive. I think the Bears obviously struggled getitng their running game going, but finally found a way in the 4th and Forte proved he could run without any impairment. No post-game announcements about any ill effects so I would be nothing but encouraged about him going into the weekend.

Brandon (Indianapolis, IN)

Good morning Stephania! Is Witten any worse for the wear this week?

Stephania Bell
  (11:12 AM)

Hi Brandon: Yes, actually. According to Wade Phillips, Witten's ankle was worse after that game and his status for this weekend is in doubt. Now you know WItten will do everything possible to play, but you saw him perhaps limping around later in last week's game. This may come down to a gtd.

Mike - Atl

Nothing is finer than a 49er. Thx for all your help this year. Won the SB for the first time this year.

Stephania Bell
  (11:13 AM)

Mike: I agree - about the 49er bit - and congratulations! Even though I lost my championship I get excited about other people (not playing against me) winning theirs.


Starphania, I need help for my chamoinship. What will they do with Marion the Barbarian this week? Would you go him or Jonathan Stewart?

Stephania Bell
  (11:16 AM)

Obviously a podcast listener - and we thank you...I honestly think that if Barber can't do more in practice than he has in the last couple weeks, he will not play. It just hasn't proved fruitful and Choice is getting tha majority of the work. It sounds as if Barber is overall improving - but it hasn't translated to what he can do on the field yet. I'd be surprised if his improvement is that drastic in a week.

Joe (Raleigh)

Any word on Boldin?

Stephania Bell
  (11:18 AM)

Joe: Sounds like Boldin is expected to play this week. The rest probably helped his shoulder, but as we saw the Cardinals looked awful - and they need to get some type of rhythm going if they want to have a chance in the playoffs. Whisenhunt has already suggested that he will indeed play.

Brian (Madison)

Any word on Lynch?

Stephania Bell
  (11:19 AM)

Brian: So far only that he aggravated the shoulder injury that kept him limited in practice all week. The Bills have not exactly labeled the injury with a diagnosis so it's hard to assess it from that perspective, but the fact that he sat out the latter part of the game (and Fred Jackson did well) may hint at the very least at a timesplit between the two this week.

Bill (New Haven, CT)

How is Vikings RB Adrian Peterson?

Stephania Bell
  (11:21 AM)

Well Bill, Except for all the fumbles he had last week and the generally poor run game that cost me my championship, he's fine. The ankle that limited him in practice was never really considered a serious injury - and should not be a limtiing factor headed into this week.

Dont Panic (Milwaukee Wisconsin)

Hi Starphania. Please help, I'm facing my brother in the final. Any news on Jeremy Shockey?

Stephania Bell
  (11:25 AM)

Don't panic - you have plenty of time to consider your options. Shockey reportedly suffered a classic ankle sprain accoridng to coach Payton, meaning not a high ankle sprain. The plan is to update his status Wednesday so you'll want to check the reports. Shockey has a long history of ankle problems so this isn't a complete surprise - but it may be just enough to limit him further this week. You may not have a better choice at tight end, but in a number of leagues Carlson is still available - and he has been a nice quiet surprise.

Your friend from the U: Coral Gables, FL

Hey Starphania, Crap, Joe took my Boldin question. How bout Warner? I'm making contingency plans to start your boy Hill (we carry two QB's via OP position) and then start westbrook, Forte, Grant and then either CJ or Dunn (since CJ may sit as well). Or I could just pickup Leinart or Russel. Thoughts?

Stephania Bell
  (11:28 AM)

IT's OK to share - 'tis the season... As far as Warner, I think he needs a redemption game heading into the playoffs and he should be able to excel against the Seahawks at home. Even if he only plays a half (and I think he may play three quarters after how terrible they have been, longer if the game is close). I like warner this week.

David - Indianapolis

What's the news on the Colts sitting their starters? I have Peyton and Rhodes, and am thinking Sorgi and probably Simpson will get the majority of the PT.

Stephania Bell
  (11:31 AM)

David: Indy has already hinted at resting some of their starters, but I also think they want to make sure they doin't get rusty. For isntance, Addai has now missed two games - so if he can go, I think they'll want him to get some playing time, but then I don't expect them to leave him in for the full game. Tricky fantasy call as a result. Likewise I think Rhodes gets some play, but not sure how much. Peyton will probably play the first quarter, but I can't see him going much longer. I agree about Sorgi and Simpson, especially second half.

Scott (Fayetteville, AR)

NBA Question!!! Updates on Kevin Martin and Agent Zero please...thank you (See how polite I am)

Stephania Bell
  (11:37 AM)

Scott: Your posts were so nice when you started out...I'll get to them, patience is a good quality to have during the holiday season...As far as Matin, there really is no update. He apparently is still having a lot of pain so his return is indefinite at this point. As far as Arenas, when a player is out after surgery we don't get much update until they're closer to returning to basketball activity.The earliest would be January so we'll check back then.

Dont Panic (Milwaukee Wisconsin)

I just purchased a DeAngelo Williams voodoo doll on Ebay. Where is the most effective spot to start sticking pins?

Stephania Bell
  (11:38 AM)

That's funny - since Stewart was on my team that had a losing effort last week, I wish you had acquired that sooner.

Jarric (Kansas)

MJD went down late last week. Will he play this week?

Stephania Bell
  (11:40 AM)

Jarric: It looked bad when it happened - him being helped off the field and all. But apparently it's not quite so bad. He says he'll start running later in the week and be ready for the game, but players are also known for being optimistic. Check the practice reports to see if he does indeed get back before counting him in, but at this point it sounds like it's a good possibility.

Steiny (NYC)

How is Selvin Young's neck?

Stephania Bell
  (11:42 AM)

Hi Steiny: Not good - since he's on IR along with Pope. It's almost impossible to imagine a team going through 7 running backs - oh, wait - it happened to the Broncos this year. If you thought Shanahan time-shared before, this experience will probably only make that worse.

Fabien (Norcross, GA)

Good morning Stephania, I would like to know what the word is coming out of Nashville regarding their starters, mainly if you think Chris will play or sit?

Stephania Bell
  (11:45 AM)

Fabien: Fisher has indicated that his starters will play some, but we just don't know how much. He also said Vince Young will probably play, so you know he plans to mix it up. I think Johnson and White will play a little, but then they may turn it over to Henry. Really, they have no incentive to push their starters this week.

Steiny (NYC)

Has Chad Johnson played his last game in Cincinnati?

Stephania Bell
  (11:46 AM)

Steiny: Quite possibly - at least his alst game of the season. There have already been hints that the hamstring may keep him from suiting up this week - and who knows what happens to him after the year is over...


Starphania. The Breaking News on Frank Gore has been the same for the last three days that he is not starting vs. the Rams. which is no help to me whatsoever. So what the word on him playing next week vs. the Skins.

Stephania Bell
  (11:48 AM)

Ben: Well that was last week. It does sound as if he will play this week as he only needs 22 yards to get to 1000 and the Niners want to finish on a high note. So yes, I expect him to play. Want to see how much he does in practice before I decide how much time he sees Sunday, but right now the word out of SF is that he's very likely a go.

Brian (Madison)

Thanks for all your help and entertainment this year. I am already looking forward to baseball. Dont Panic- I think you should put that doll through your snow blower (from another Stewart owner)

Stephania Bell
  (11:48 AM)

Brian: That's hilarious - had to post - and thanks for coming to the chat throughout the year.

John Ztown

Hi Stephania, First year in FF and I won one of my two leagues...hoping to make it two of two! Are the falcons going to rest anyone or since they need this game will they play it through?

Stephania Bell
  (11:50 AM)

John: And who said there's no such thing as Beginner's luck?? That's awesome. SO far there is no inclination that the Falcons rest anyone.


Rb problems, is Portis & Westbrook heathly options this last week or do I play it safe with Slaton(who lost it for me last week)& P. Thomas who may not touch the ball with Brees going for the record?

Stephania Bell
  (11:53 AM)

Understandable why you have a headache...I wouldn't call Portis or Westbrook "healthy" but I do think both of them play. Slaton should ahve a better showing this week, although with the Bears all fired up...Thomas will touch the ball, Payton wants to win. They're aware of the record but they want the win - and Thomas has been outstanding BUT, Carolina NEEDS the win - and so that will be a tough contest. I like Slaton.

Dont Panic (Milwaukee Wisconsin)

Brian, my snowblower is broken from the 42 feet of snow we have. I could just leave the doll outside in the -42 degree weather we're having. How fast can a man run on legs that frozen stiff?

Stephania Bell
  (11:54 AM)

Funny - the Williams voodoo talk continues...

Bob (Chicago, Illinois)

Warner or Rivers? Is Warner sitting out the second half? I need championship help after starting Warner last week!!

Stephania Bell
  (11:56 AM)

Bob: It's hard to call b/c I think it depends how the team is doing. If they're playing well and up big, then they may yank him. Otherwise no. But Rivers has put up some solid numbers lately - and with them having a huge contest at home, against a porous D, he's an awfully good option.

Steiny (NYC)

Visanthe Shiancoe had a monster game Sunday. Should I think about starting him over Dallas Clark in fear that Tony Dungy will rest his starters?

Stephania Bell
  (11:58 AM)

Very reasonable proposal. Clark is Peyton's top target this year, but if neither one is in the game for long, well, they can't earn you points.

Steve, Denver

Any chance the Steelers rest their starters on D (i.e., is there any way I should start Jamal Lewis in my Super Bowl)?

Stephania Bell
  (11:59 AM)

Steve: I don't expect them to. Tomlin likes to play his guys, especially when he things there is still work to be done - but we haven't really heard specifically from them. At this point I would say no.

Stephania Bell
  (12:00 PM)

OK everyone - thanks so much for coming. We won't be chatting on Friday, but we will be chatting about the injuries on Sunday before the game, so come back then at 10 am!! Happy Holidays everyone!!