Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

September 21, 11:00 AM ET
Fantasy Injuries with Stephania Bell

Stephania Bell
  (11:06 AM)

Happy Friday everyone. Busy, busy, busy. OK - so who else started Andre Brown and Ramses Barden last night?

Doug (White Plains, NY)

Hi Stephania - can you shed some light on the statement Andy Reid made concerning Maclins hip pointer "It can not get worse by playing and it's a pain tolerance level issue only". How is that possible? Ur telling me hip pointer's are immune to hits, cutting, and general contact??

Stephania Bell
  (11:09 AM)

Doug: Great q. I never like the "it's a pain tolerance" remark because it makes it sound as if the player were only tough enough, he could play...and that's not necessarily what the coach means. I think it's the kind of thing where you're not worried about making a Grade 1 ligament sprain turn into a Grade 2. In other words, if you bang it up and the pain increases to where you can't perform, then you can't go but it doesn't put you at big risk.

Madhur (Brunswick, GA)

Hey Stephania! First time joining the chat... if ryan matthews does play according to the plan do you start him over the likes of Amendola at flex?

Stephania Bell
  (11:10 AM)

Madhur: Welcome! Yes, I think you do. Most people drafted him with the expectation he's the RB1 or even RB2. And the Chargers intend to use him out of the gate (I believe) as the star RB. While it's Week 1 for him, I think he wants to prove he's ready to go and from a conditioning standpoint, the sense is that he is ready to go.

Edsel (FL)

Glad I started Andre Brown last night. How is Bradshaw? Think he comes back with a full time job?

Stephania Bell
  (11:13 AM)

Edsel: Congrats to you. There has really been no info with regards to Bradshaw's injury - but at the same time, no hint that they think he misses extensive time. I would expect that Brown has earned his way into the mix and that there will likely be a split, not nec 50-50 but maybe 60-40(?) Probably fluid.

Steve (GA)

Too risky to wait on Jennings, or is he likely to play?

Stephania Bell
  (11:18 AM)

Steve: I think it's risky to wait until Monday. He is very questionable and I'd try to find a replacement.

Garrett (Fargo)

I was surprised that Nicks didn't travel with the team to Carolina. What's going on with his foot?

Stephania Bell
  (11:20 AM)

Garrett: Nicks will be OK. Only four days off after last big game and that was a lot of increased work. Better to rest him now and have him healthier as the season goes along.

Karna (Chicago)

Is Lynch simply getting some rest or did his back spasms actually flare up again this week during practice?

Stephania Bell
  (11:21 AM)

Karna: No indication that he's worse. Think they're trying to avoid that. More rest and recovery than anything else.

Jeff (NY)

How is Julio Jones?

Stephania Bell
  (11:22 AM)

Jeff: Fine. Mike Smith said he and Roddy White were getting rest as mich as anything after a Monday night game.

Ryland (PA)

is it possible that Britt could be 100% back from his knee problems? too soon to hope?

Stephania Bell
  (11:23 AM)

Ryland: I'm not prepared to say 100%. Most guys coming off ACL surgery are not 100% after one game. It's an evolving process. The challenge is wtrying to project when he will start being more productive. No way to say for sure but I feel like I need to see it to believe it.

Brian (Mechanicsburg, PA)

What's the latest on Brandon Lloyd? Will he play Sunday night?

Stephania Bell
  (11:24 AM)

Brian: So far no real indications he won't. Patriots have a habit of limiting guys in practice, listing as questionable and then playing Sunday. Unfortunately they don't often offer much information either. My expectation as of now is that he plays.

Cirilo R. (CA)

Love watching Thursday Night Football...hate having to deal with injuries because so early in week. Had to start LaFell over Colston. What do you know about his foot? Read it may have slowed him last week too. THank you ever so kindly!

Stephania Bell
  (11:26 AM)

Cirilo: That early game does pose some challenges. Yes, coach Kromer said he thought the foot was slowing Colston. That's part of the reason he's getting increased rest this week. Still think he plays.

Thomas (Copenhagen)

Greetings from Denmark... What's going on with Garcon? As someone mentioned above, it's mentioned as a "pain tolerance issue" - in these cases, if he does play should we expect he gets full reps/performance or is there a chance the pain gets too much during the game?

Stephania Bell
  (11:27 AM)

Thomas: Welcome! They call it a bruised foot. Sounds like it's near his big toe but not his big toe. No matter what, it is making it difficult for him to push off, etc on that foot. Right now, doesn't look like he's shown enough to play. And yes, there will be a concern of him flaring it up, until we see that he can get through a game without issue.

Chip (NC)

Hi Stephania- Not looking good for S Jax huh? I heard an 'expert' say that he and players like Miles Austin are more likely to have soft tissue injuries because they are almost too muscular. What say you?

Stephania Bell
  (11:31 AM)

Chip: Don't know that I would make that generalization. Find me an elite NFL RB who isn't. The very nature of what they do sets them up for these types of injuries (along with WRs). As they progress through their careers, their injury histories become a factor too. SJax has had groin, hamstring and quad strains in the past...expect him to be more predisposed to them.

Jon (Kinesiology)

I've had formal sports injury schooling as part of my degree, and I'm always impressed at how knowledgeable you are, Stephania. To add to the hip pointer comment above: a hip pointer is essentially just a very bad bruise. What Reid means is that Maclin's activity is a question of "is the pain signficiant enough to decrease mobility and range of motion at the hip," and not one of "will he exacerbate the injury by playing, in the way that a sprain or strain is directly affected by using the injured limb." Like you said, if he takes contact to the hip like he did last week, he's gonna be hurting. But otherwise, the main impediment to his playing is the severity of his pain. P.S. Hip pointers are why you wear your pads properly! Almost totally preventable.

Stephania Bell
  (11:32 AM)

Thank you Jon. Love the contribution...

Farrel (NJ)

Gates really pulled a fast one on us last week, huh? Think he's good to go this time around? I like that he's been practicing, at least.

Stephania Bell
  (11:34 AM)

Farrel: Yes. Yes he did. And we certainly weren't expecting it, especially after he returned to Monday night's game and showed up for Friday practice. Thankfully, this week appears to be more straightforward than last. Signs point to him playing and after Friday's practice we should have an even better idea.

Justin (New Orleans)

Someone offered me Jamaal Charles for Malcom Floyd. Any reason to be afraid of Charles' knee going forward?

Stephania Bell
  (11:37 AM)

Justin: I don't think I'd be afraid. Yes, he has a bruised knee and they pulled him back last week. Is he still moving forward post-ACL? I think so. Hopefully this is a good week for him although I don't necessarily think all is behind him all of a sudden. Think it's a better week and he continues to improve. Looking for bigger things in the second half of the season.

Jay (dc)

Stephania-Any updates on Matt Forte?

Stephania Bell
  (11:38 AM)

Jay: Not really. Hasn't practiced yet. Team saying nothing. We know he wasn't wearing a brace Monday but we really don't know where he is in the recovery process. I imagine he's out this week but based on how the team is acting now, I don't think we're getting anything more than "day-today" going forward and we're going to have to continue to try to read the tea leaves.

Joey (Brooklyn)

How is my boy megatron doing?

Stephania Bell
  (11:39 AM)

Joey: Fine. He'll be playing this weekend.

Dave (Boston)

Mike Wallace sat out on Wednesday. Is there a health issue bothering him? These hold out guys always make me nervous.

Stephania Bell
  (11:40 AM)

Dave: A groin issue which kept him out Weds but he practiced fully Thursday. I hear you - and I too am concerned with the holdouts - but ti looks like this one isn't a huge worry (yet).

Ryan (Madison, WI)

What's your thoughts on Vincent Brown? Worth an early pick up off the waiver wire?

Stephania Bell
  (11:42 AM)

Ryan: I'd wait. No comeptition for him right now and he's not returning for eight weeks (or thereabouts). Wait until we start hearing about him getting closer to resuming some sports activity before occupying a space on your bench.

Charly (Oxford MS)

Any chance Mendenhall plays this weekend?

Stephania Bell
  (11:44 AM)

Charly: Suppose there's a chance since he hasn't been ruled out. I'm inclined to think they wait another week (meaning incorporating Week 4 bye) but there's a chance he's activated and used to a lesser degree.

Brad (Cedar Rapids)

As the weeks go on, can we expect to see AP (and other ACL inured players) improve w/ his cutting and burst, or will the grind keep his recovery limited til off-season?

Stephania Bell
  (11:45 AM)

Brad: I think they all improve as the season goes on. Part of it is getting used to being back out on the field and in the game, NOT thinking about the knee. Only way that gets better is with reps.

Justin (woootown ma)

whats your take on winslow? is he going to produce at all or are his knees really that bad?

Stephania Bell
  (11:47 AM)

Justin: His knees (especially the one that he shredded in the motorcycle accident) are that bad. That said, I think he can still be semi-productive. He's a sizeable presence on the field and the Patriots only need a short-term solution. They need the threat of someone there, not necessarily someone who will do what Hernandez did (and he won't be as nimble as Hernandez). I actually think Welker will be the beneficiary.

Jason (TE Help)

Aaron Hernandez updates? What's a realistic return date?

Stephania Bell
  (11:48 AM)

Jason: As a follow, there's no timetable from team. They haven't even labeled the injury (other than "ankle"). He's been seen walking out of boot at facility, still limping. Likely several weeks.

Seamus (Philadelphia, PA)

Cobb's hammy makes me nervous. Any word on him?

Stephania Bell
  (11:49 AM)

Seamus: McCarthy says he expects him to play. Makes it sound not very serious.

Kevin (Syracuse)

Can Dustin Keller return this week to help out that vaunted Jets passing game?

Stephania Bell
  (11:50 AM)

Kevin: He says he wants to but he's been pretty limited. Need to see what he can do today after just getting back to practice.

Perry (Boston)

Follow up to the Mendenhall question: when he does play, what would you expect from him? Is he a weekly flex play when healthy?

Stephania Bell
  (11:52 AM)

Perry: I put him in the same category as other guys coming back from ACL. It's a progression. Would hardly count on him as top tier RB when he first returns. And then it becomes a matter of watching to see how he really looks and what type of worklaod they're giving him. They are being careful not to return him too soon so I'd be willing to put him in flex spot initially.

Ryan (AZ)

Status on Jahvid Best ?

Stephania Bell
  (11:52 AM)

Ryan: Nothing has changed.

Marco (Mexico City)

Hola Stephania ... how bad is garcon injury? I remember McFaddens turf toe last year .... also, ive been offered Decker and Pitta for him, my other TEs are Tamme and Owen Daniels, your thoughts? Gracias!

Stephania Bell
  (11:55 AM)

Marco: We haven't seen Garcon be able to do anything yet. Very hard to jusge something you can't see...but the longer he goes without being able to "go" the more nervous you get. I'd be tempted on the Decker/Pitta trade. Mostly b/c Pitta is being used almost as a slot receiver at times. Decker isn't Garcon but still presents a decent option at WR. And they're both healthy right now.

Jon (Canada)

Will the Jets have Revis island back Sunday?

Stephania Bell
  (11:55 AM)

Jon: All is looking that way. Back in full contact practice.

Nate (NJ)

Please settle this Fred Jackson debate. Closer to week 4 or week 7?

Stephania Bell
  (11:57 AM)

Nate: Can't settle it definitively. It's not like you say, "OK - the guy is coming back in Week 4. No matter what." It's a fluid process. But like I wrote on Tuesday, Jackson's progress so far has been encouraging to the point where it appears he's on track for the 4 week prognosis.

Anthony (Philly)

Is it just me, or are teams more secretive about their injuries than ever? What gives? Trying to not give anything away to opponents?

Stephania Bell
  (11:59 AM)

Anthony: They're trying to be. Everyone is looking for an edge, whereever they can get it. It's a bit silly at times b/c there are so many fluid variables, but it is what it is. Andy Reid closing his practices to the media b/c he's finding that social media practices are getting info out is a sure sign that teams are getting more wary (or paranoid).

Matt (Philly)

BASEBALL; What should we expect out of Chris Carpenter in his first start back?

Stephania Bell
  (12:01 PM)

Matt: You've been patient, waiting for a baseball q. I wouldn't go crazy but I expect a decent start, maybe 6 innings of work. He's looked good reportedly in his sim games. Frankly, I think it's amazing he's actually back this year. Amazing.

Doug (New York)

Who is most likely to play? Gates, Garcon, Sjax, B Lloyd?

Stephania Bell
  (12:03 PM)

Doug: Gates. THen Lloyd. Less confident about SJax and Garcon.

Kevin (NYC)

Ryan Williams keeps showing up as "limited" in the practice reports. Apparently they are "saving" him. Saving him for WHAT? Is he droppable at this point?

Stephania Bell
  (12:04 PM)

Kevin: Not saving as much as protecting. He's coming off a major, major surgery. And he's essentially a rookie (since he didn't play last year). It's a case of easing him into the work. He'll do more as the season goes on but I wouldn't be starting him until I saw proof of it.

Stephania Bell
  (12:05 PM)

OK everyone - time for me to go. Thanks for coming to the Friday chat. See you Sunday, we're on ESPN2 for 2 hours, starting at 11 a.m. ET. Good luck in Week 3!!!