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November 3, 11:00 AM ET
Fantasy Injuries w/Stephania Bell

Stephania Bell
  (11:02 AM)

Good morning Sports Nation - I am bummed because I lost in both my fantasy leagues this week - and once again I had the second or third highest scores but played the rock star of the week in each league. How does that happen more than once in a season? ANyone else out there feeling my pain? Let's get to the injuries...

Erich (Houston)

I am a molder of young minds, so I won't be able to chat, but I wanted to know the status on Kevin Smith. Thank you.

Stephania Bell
  (11:04 AM)

Erich: So glad that you are tending to the young minds of America. When you check back later, you'll see this: Smith hurt his shoulder Sunday - of course the Lions are not saying exactly what it was - BUT they did say that he could have returned if necessary. So it sounds initially like it's not serious.

Jeff (Lemont Il)

Stephania - you are the Best! Met you in Chicago at the convention - Help me - Ahmad Bradshaw? I can get Buckholder or J Charles instead - I'm weak with SJAX on a bye.

Stephania Bell
  (11:07 AM)

Jeff: Nice meeting you in Chicago. I think BRadshaw has the most upside but comes with risk - although it's no greater now than it was a few weeks ago. Buckhalter has lost some value with Moreno being No. 1 but we know he can be productive if Moreno gets hurt. In KC it sounds like Charles will get a chance to showcase himself this week - the question becomes what happens if he underperforms...I like Bradshaw

BJ (Tacoma, WA)

Thinking about trading for Megatron. What is his status and how productive do you see him being going forward? Thanks!

Stephania Bell
  (11:09 AM)

BJ: I would be awfully hesitant to make the trade until I saw him produce - unless you can get him for a steal by hyping up his injury. The problem is that we don't know exactly what he's dealing with (knee injury) - so many possibilities - and the fact that he hasn't been able to do anything really in 3 weeks (of which one was a bye)is concerning. Schwartz says he's getting closer -whatever that means - but won't commit to him playing this week. Don't know if this will be one more week or three more - and then how will he be when he comes back...

Tyson (KC)

Hey Steph. I'm a terrified Aaron Rogers owner with the beating he is taking week to week. How concerned should I be with sprains to his foot and toe? What information do you have in regards to the severity of these injuries?

Stephania Bell
  (11:11 AM)

Tyson: Understandable b/c he is getting beat up. He clearly looked to be gimpy by the end of the game and now we understand that both feet are bothering him. He already had the foot sprain and although he had some discomfort with certain movements, it wasn't enough to keep him out. That said, it's probably gone back a step after the game. He also injured the toe on his other foot. I expect his mobility to be more limited this week, but they've already indicated that he is expected to play this week.

Ryan (Washington DC)

Ok, I'll touch the pink elephant in the room: Boldin, whats the story? Does he play this week? Whats the future hold?

Stephania Bell
  (11:13 AM)

Ryan: He aggravated his right ankle sprain and then had to exit the game. Boldin is tough and will continue to play, even at less than 100%, as long as he can run and cut on the field - which he thinks eh will be able to do this week. We will see how/what he does in practice this week...but again, he has not really been able to finish well the last two weeks, and that could be a pattern as he continues to play with this injury.

Chris (Lynchburg, VA)

I feel your pain. I played the rock star of the league again this week in one league, and lost. On the flip side, my all stinky team with Jacobs and Forte actually won for a change. Favre apparently hurt his groin in practice last week and aggravated it during the game. Since he kept playing I'm guessing it's not that serious?

Tom (Chicago)

Owen Daniels owner scrambling. Would you trade Kevin Smith for Dallas Clark?

Stephania Bell
  (11:17 AM)

Chris: Thanks for the empathy. Although glad you had a win. Yes, apparently Favre told his OC before the game that he might not be able to go (Ha Ha...). He did look like he was limping periodically to me, but then he often looks like that and still plays like Favre. So I imagine he's not going to be missing time..

Stephania Bell
  (11:18 AM)

Tom: I would totally make that trade. You get a more consistent tight end and I think you can make up the difference in RB (depending how deep your league is - maybe go get Charles)

Tim (Los Angeles)

Slaton put the ball on the ground 3 times his rookie year and he's up to 7 already. I think Moats' performance was fool's gold, but is there any idea of Steve's value going forward?

Stephania Bell
  (11:20 AM)

Tim: Lots of people asking about the RB situation in Houston. Kubiak has already said he plans to use the committee - terrible news for fantasy owners - but there's no way to know how it's going to shake out given that that's their plan...

John (Boston)

What is going on with Brian Westbrook and what is his outlook going forward?

Stephania Bell
  (11:22 AM)

John: Westbrook tried some exercise this weekend - reportedly had a bit of a headache after some of the exercise. Sounds like he felt better after the weekend progressed and was going to go through some more exercise testing today. Eagles hope to have him in full practice Weds. If he IS full practice Weds, it looks good for him to play this weekend (assuming he tolerates practice well and can go again THurs)

Brian (de)

With Daniels done for the year would Fred Davis be a good pickup? How long until Cooley is back?

Stephania Bell
  (11:24 AM)

Brian: Well, based on what we've seen so far, I think he's a reasonable replacement...but he will give way to Cooley when he returns. The Redskins are saying 4 weeks - but it's an estimate.

Jeff (Atlanta)

Feel your pain Stephana. I had a great week in Fantasy, but the guy I played had the top score of the season for any week. So I lost my stud TE Owen Daniels to a knee injury and need a replacement. Chris Cooley is available as a free agent in my league. What's his status and do you feel he will be productive once back given the nature of his injury?

Stephania Bell
  (11:26 AM)

Jeff - Just to dovetail on the last post, I think Cooley will be productive but it may take a week or two for him to return to form moving on the ankle. If you can afford to stash him, he may be worthwhile when it comes to fantasy playoff time --but you may not be able to count on him until late in the season.

Andy (New Orleans)

Hi Stephania, What are your thoughts on Darren McFadden? Will he make an impact upon his return? Would you drop Wells for him?

Stephania Bell
  (11:29 AM)

Andy: I wouldn't move on McFadden now. I think he's got talent, but until you see that he's truly back from his knee surgery, I wouldn't bite. We saw Antonio Bryant struggle initially after similar surgery - and McFadden is just (hopefully) getting back to practice. Not expected until possibly Week 10.

Brad (Delaware)

Here's another Owen Daniels replacement, Jermichael Finley, when is he expect back?

Stephania Bell
  (11:31 AM)

Brad: Not this week. They're calling him questionable to doubtful at the start of the week which isn't good.

Patrick (Alaska)

I think you need to take more questions pertaining to actual injuries to key players. Guys like Reggie Wayne, Donald Driver, DeSean Jackson need to be talked about. We dont need 10 questions from people telling their sob story about owen daniels.

Stephania Bell
  (11:33 AM)

Patrick: Be nice to your fellow chatters. A lot of fantasy owners are stranded at tight end b/c of the Daniels' injury - and gauging from the number of posts related to Daniels, that's what people want to know about. I will answer your Driver question from earlier. He actually left the game with a stinger - but only came out for a brief period. The team expects him to be OK and ready to play this week.

Steve (NYC)

Hi Stephania, Looks like you were right (of course) about A. Gonzalez taking time to get back. Do you think he make a meaningful contribution down the stretch or not?

Stephania Bell
  (11:36 AM)

Steve: Never wish to have a guy out for extended time b/c of injury - but I did suspect that the time projection was a little ambitious for him. The hope is that Gonzalez will return to practices this week. I'd be surprised if that turns into playing Sunday as I think he'll need at least a full week of practice - so my guess as of today is Week 10 earliest.

Whambulance (Alaska)

We are here to pick up Patrick.

Stephania Bell
  (11:36 AM)

It's funny Patrick.

Mike (Bronx NY)

Some of us play in deep leagues, and use non-"key" players in our lineups. Manningham's shoulder - a concern going into Week 9? With him and Megatron banged up, I'm thinking I should grab Sam Aiken...

Stephania Bell
  (11:39 AM)

Mike: I think given the fact that the team has not identified the exact nature of the injury (Coughlin said he "didn't know what you would call it" to be specific. But we do know he injured it in Week 2 and then aggravated it late Thursday in practice when he landed on it - all of which makes me think that it may be something that flares from time to time. Late last week, Manningham said he expected to play - and even though he didn't it tells me he probably will be able to get back this week.

Jon (KC)

Sammy Morris still injured? I have to choose between Laurence Maroney (vs. Miami), Ryan Moats (@ Indy), or FWP (@ Denver) for this week. Unfortunately, those are my best options due to BYE week issues. Thanks!

Stephania Bell
  (11:42 AM)

Jon: I do know that Sammy Morris has not been at practice for the last couple days. Now with a bye they may be giving him some extra time so he may be able to practice late in the week - BUT I would anticipate that right now Maroney is the healthier of the two and likely starts. Parker sick (flu?) early this week and he's the #2- and Moats will be in a heavy rotation potentially. Can't believe I'm saying it but I like Maroney of the 3.

Merrill (ATL)

Good morning Stephania, what happened to Hasselback he is listed as probable was wondering if it is his ribs?

Stephania Bell
  (11:44 AM)

Merrill: hasselbeck is still recovering from the broken ribs and is just experiencing soreness. Nothing new...

Mike (DC)

Boss is complaining about his ankle. Should I be concerned?

Stephania Bell
  (11:45 AM)

Mike: Although he said it was sore after the game, he said it wasn't nearly as bad as when he originally hurt it. Wouldn't be surprised if he is limited early in practice this week, but he is expected to play.

Steve (Cleveland)

Hello Stephania, Do you think Donald Brown will play this weekend? Because of bye weeks and injuries, my options are either play him or pick up Parker, Ward, Faulk or M Morris (and drop C Taylor; who is just a handcuff for me). Thanks!

Stephania Bell
  (11:47 AM)

Steve: I think he's a toss-up - not helpful, I know - but his injury and status depends a lot on pain so every day it could be a different story. The early thought is that it appears that he could sit out again this week. I would pick up insurance now while some of these guys are available.

Jake (ND)

I know it's early to say, but do you think Winfield will be back for the Vikes after this weeks bye or how long is he out?

Stephania Bell
  (11:49 AM)

Jake: It is early but the hope is still that Winfield is back after the bye week.

andrew (iraq)

hey steph, Im about done with Bolding, thinking about dropping him for cotchery, who i really like for the rest of the season. Do you think I should? Or stick by Boldin and hope he heals and produces?

Stephania Bell
  (11:51 AM)

Andrew: Thanks for all you do overseas...I would actually drop Boldin for Cotchery. BOldin is tough and I think he'll try to fight through the injury but he hasn't been especially fantasy productive and I like Cotchery going forward.

Pete (Buffalo Grove, IL)

Also met you at the convention outside of Chicago, and having been following your fantasy injury updates closely since then. You showed some nice insight on the problems with Seattle's offensive line back in August. Anyways, I have to make a decision between Green Bay's D/ST vs. Tampa Bay and New Orlean's D/ST vs. Carolina. What is the latest on Jake Del Homme and his availability this week. Leaning towards Green Bay, but do you have any recommendations?

Stephania Bell
  (11:53 AM)

Pete: Thanks - Chicago was a great event...Jake expects to play despite the bruised sternum of this week - and I know he's provided a lot of fantasy picks for opposing defenses so far - but Tampa Bay has not been able to produce much offense and I like that matchup for Green Bay.

Jason (Ellicott City, MD)

Pau Gasol's status......

Stephania Bell
  (11:56 AM)

Jason: I know, I promised some NBA love. Gasol apparently has a tear in his hamstring and I believe is getting another MRI. He is not expected to play in the upcoming road trip - and if he has a tear - it may end up being a couple weeks. Sooooo -plan accordingly - and they want to get this treated well, b/c otherwise could be a problem throughout the season.

James (NY)

Some people in NY are throwing around the idea that Eli's foot injury is more serious than we think, and it's leading to bad throws and overall poor performance.... Anything to this?

Stephania Bell
  (11:58 AM)

James: I think there was some concern about Eli's ability to plant on his foot - and Coughlin acknowledged that he saw some hesitation during practices, but contends he did not see it during the games. For his part Eli said maybe the first week it was bothering him, but that it's felt great since and is not hindering him at all - can only believe what he's saying - and it hasn't looked like the foot specifically is affecting his mechanics...

Bill (SD, CA)

LDT appeared to possibly re-injure his ankle late in Sunday's game...any word on this?

Stephania Bell
  (12:00 PM)

Bill: Nothing on this - no word from the team that anything is wrong with LT.

Kyle (Jersey)

Any issues going forward with Andre Johnson's lung contusion, no setbacks or anything?

Stephania Bell
  (12:02 PM)

Kyle: No reported setbacks so should be fine going forward.

Jonathan (San Francisco)

Deep league question - is Hixon hurt?

Stephania Bell
  (12:03 PM)

Jonathan: Hip is sore but no specific injury - still if Manningham returns, he's far down on the depth chart.

Josh (FL)

D. Hester?!

Stephania Bell
  (12:04 PM)

No injury I'm hearing of.

Stephania Bell
  (12:04 PM)

OK everyone - time for me to leave. Thanks so much for coming. We'll do it again Friday and we always have more info later in the week after practices, etc. See you then!!