The fantasy playoffs are a week away in most leagues, and for many fantasy owners, this week is a critical play-in game or seeding game. Here is your status report.
• With Gerald Everett (knee) out at Arizona, Tyler Higbee becomes a legitimate tight-end rental for those desperate at the position.
• Jordan Howard (shoulder) is out for another week, putting Miles Sanders squarely into fantasy relevance at Miami. Alshon Jeffery (ankle) is set to return, but Zach Ertz (hamstring) looks like a game-time decision.
• As usual, the Patriots have their team photo on the injury report. We expect Julian Edelman (shoulder) to play despite his dings; he hasn’t missed a game all year. Mohamed Sanu (ankle) and Phillip Dorsett (concussion) traveled to Houston and have a chance to return this week. After Edelman, it’s hard to know which receivers to start here; N’Keal Harry and Jakobi Meyers were both effective last week.
New England also has a new kicker this week, with Kai Forbath taking over for Nick Folk.
• David Njoku (wrist) isn’t ready for a return yet; he’s ruled out for the rematch at Pittsburgh. Wideout Jarvis Landry has been Cleveland’s best receiver; he’s in the midst of his best fantasy year, too.
• The Vikings expect Adam Thielen (hamstring) to play Monday at Seattle after a full practice week, though he is still listed as questionable.
• The Giants are down all sorts of firepower — Golden Tate (concussion), Evan Engram (ankle), and even Rhett Ellison (concussion). Sterling Shepherd is returning, though, and Darius Slayton is having a strong rookie year.
• Strange days for the Pittsburgh passing game, where Duck Hodges is the new quarterback. Maybe he’s an upgrade over Mason Rudolph, that’s entirely possible. JuJu Smith-Schuster (concussion) will not play Sunday against Cleveland.
• Marlon Mack (hand) hopes to return in Week 14. Jonathan Williams is the head of the Indy backfield committee in the meantime. T.Y. Hilton (calf) remains week-to-week. With Eric Ebron out for the year, Jack Doyle is probably a Top 10 tight end.
• The Broncos are being coy about their starting quarterback, but they have activated Drew Lock off IR. Hopefully your Week 13 status doesn’t come down to one of the Denver options.
• Although Kyler Murray (hamstring) had a full Friday practice, the Cardinals are listing him as questionable. Arizona is an intriguing underdog against the slumping Rams.
• Derrick Henry (hamstring) had a full practice Friday and wasn’t on the final injury report. Keep rolling with the Tennessee bell cow.
• Jeff Driskel (hamstring) went on injured reserve, ending his season. David Blough remains the starter for now, with Matthew Stafford out indefinitely. Blough acquitted himself nicely in the Thanksgiving loss to Chicago.
• Amari Cooper (knee) had a clean MRI Friday and is expected to play next week. He’s likely been less than 100 percent all season, but he’s yet to miss a start.