The NFL is back in session with 16 games on the Week 3 slate, creating implications in seasonal and fantasy football, as well as the sports betting market. Every week, we’ll bring you a list of the key injuries that could impact betting lines and fantasy contests on sites such as DraftKings and FanDuel.
Note that players who fail to practice on Thursday and/or Friday leading into games may be listed as questionable but are in actuality closer to doubtful. Be sure to check back each afternoon to see if key players did any work in practice for clues as to their eventual status.
NFL coaches are famous for being taciturn when it comes to injuries, so nothing is set in stone when trying to predict how a player will perform, even if active.
Here are the key injuries to watch ahead of Week 3:
Carson Wentz, Philadelphia Eagles (Knee, Probable) – Updated 9/21
Carson Wentz will start against a Colts team that’s improved, but remains vulnerable down the field. He could be without Alshon Jeffery (shoulder) and LT Marcus Peters (quad) is still getting back up to speed. But you can bank on his talent and the need for heavy pass attempts with Jay Ajayi (back) ruled out.
Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers (Knee, Questionable)
Clearly hobbled by a sprained knee, Aaron Rodgers is expected to keep playing through it. The Packers have essentially no chance to win without him. His inability to scramble or throw his textbook lasers on the run downgrades all the Packers receivers ahead of a road tilt in Washington.
Marcus Mariota, Tennessee Titans (Elbow, Questionable) – Updated 9/22
Marcus Mariota will play at less than full strength. The Jaguars truly elite defense should feast.
Jameis Winston, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Suspension, Out)
Winston is suspended for the first three games of the season, and Ryan Fitzpatrick has been incredible in his absence. Fitzpatrick and the Bucs (+3) are still underdogs at home this Monday against a porous Steelers secondary that gave up six passing TDs to Patrick Mahomes.
Joe Mixon, Cincinnati Bengals (Knee, Out)
The Bengals have lost second-year back Joe Mixon for a few weeks. He’ll undergo a knee scope procedure. That will make Giovani Bernard a borderline “bell cow” back going forward although his Week 3 matchup at Carolina is far from ideal. Mark Walton should back up Bernard.
*Leonard Fournette, Jacksonville Jaguars (Hamstring, Doubtful) – Updated 9/23
Leonard Fournette is not expected to return in Week 3 despite getting in limited practice sessions. T.J. Yeldon (ankle) will start, but is dealing with his own ankle issue and will cede touches to Corey Grant, a potential punt play on DraftKings.
LeSean McCoy, Buffalo Bills (Ribs, Questionable) – Updated 9/21
Originally, it was reported that LeSean McCoy might have broken a few ribs in Sunday’s loss to the Chargers. Apparently his ribs are not broken, but he’s been practicing in a non-contact jersey. McCoy could sit out one game with the host Vikings (-16.5) expected to dominate. If he sits, Marcus Murphy and Chris Ivory would form a committee.
Dalvin Cook, Minnesota Vikings (Hamstring, Out) – Updated 9/21
Dalvin Cook will apparently rest his ailing hamstring against the hapless Bills (+16.5). The Vikings won’t risk their three-down back suffering a setback, which makes Latavius Murray an appealing value in most DFS formats.
Jay Ajayi, Philadelphia Eagles (Back, Out) – Updated 9/21
Darren Sproles (hamstring) is also out with a hamstring injury, leaving Corey Clement and Wendell Smallwood to carry the load against and improved Colts run defense. Clement is the stronger option. Carson Wentz should an uptick in pass attempts with Ajayi out.
Marlon Mack, Indianapolis Colts (Hamstring, Out) – Updated 9/21
Apparently Marlon Mack is dealing with a foot injury in addition to the hamstring injury that kept him out in Week 1. Jordan Wilkins will be the lead back for Indy with Nyheim Hines mixing in for touches in a brutal matchup at Philadelphia.
Out for Extended Period: Le’Veon Bell, Devonta Freeman, Mark Ingram, Jerick McKinnon, Derrius Guice, Rob Kelley, Jeremy Hill, Kenneth Dixon
Doug Baldwin, Seattle Seahawks (Knee, Out)
Doug Baldwin is expected to miss multiple weeks with a sprained MCL. Brandon Marshall and Tyler Lockett will see more work with Baldwin out, but the Seahawks offensive line is struggling to protect Russell Wilson. This is typically a unit to avoid.
Marvin Jones Jr., Detroit Lions (Ankle, Questionable) – Updated 9/22
Marvin Jones Jr. is now questionable for Sunday night’s matchup with the Patriots. Kenny Golladay and Golden Tate would see more targets if he sits.
Alshon Jeffery, Philadelphia Eagles (Shoulder, Out) – Updated 9/21
With Mack Hollins (groin) on I.R. and Mike Wallace (ankle) likely headed there as well, the Eagles are down to Nelson Agholor and Zach Ertz as their only reliable receivers. Former Ravens WR Kamar Aiken could see some time, and Braxton Miller has been promoted from the practice squad. Carson Wentz is good, but is he good enough to put up big numbers with this receiving corps in his first start back?
Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals (Hamstring, Questionable) – Updated 9/20
The ageless WR may be slowing down in what appears to be a lost season for Arizona. Larry Fitzgerald left a 34-0 loss with a hamstring issue and the Cardinals (+4.5) host a much-improved Bears defense this week. Fitzgerald is expected to play through the issue.
Donte Moncrief, Jacksonville Jaguars (Knee, Questionable)
Donte Moncrief played through a minor injury to total 4 catches for 34 yards and a TD against the Patriots. If he misses any practice time, expect Keelan Cole and Dede Westbrook to grab an even larger target share of the Jags passing attack.
Travis Benjamin, Los Angeles Chargers (Foot, Questionable)
With Travis Benjamin unable to go in Week 2, Clemson product Mike Williams saw extended snaps and caught a TD for the second straight week. Tyrell Williams and Mike Williams will see more targets if Benjamin remains out in a far tougher matchup against the Rams next Sunday.
DeVante Parker, Miami Dolphins (Finger, Probable) – Updated 9/21
DeVante Parker appeared disgruntled when reporters asked him about being named inactive in Week 2, so even though he’s no longer listed on the injury report, you need to be wary about his role going forward with the team.
Marquise Goodwin, San Francisco 49ers (Thigh, Questionable) – Updated 9/21
Marquise Goodwin is listed as questionable his quad injury and HC Kyle Shanahan said he’s close to a game-time decision. Pierre Garcon and Dante Pettis would see more targets if Goodwin is out. Tight end George Kittle would also be asked to step up in juicy matchup at Kansas City next week.
Josh Gordon, New England Patriots (Hamstring, Questionable) – Updated 9/21
The Patriots are embracing the mystery surrounding Josh Gordon by offering no indications as to how much he’ll play in his debut. He put three limited practices this week and is likely fine physically, it’s just a question of whether the coaches trust him.
Out for Extended Period: Julian Edelman, Marqise Lee, Mack Hollins, Mike Wallace, Pharoh Cooper, Curtis Samuel
Jack Doyle, Indianapolis Colts (Hip, Out) – Updated 9/21
Doyle’s absence could make Eric Ebron a popular value play in DFS contests with his potential in the red zone. Yet the Eagles defense has been very stingy against TEs and Ebron is limited in his route-running ability. T.Y. Hilton (quad) did practice in full on Friday.
Out for Extended Period: Greg Olsen, Delanie Walker, Hunter Henry, Ed Dickson
Travis Frederick, Dallas Cowboys (Illness, Doubtful)
The Cowboys bounced back with Joe Looney at center instead of Frederick. But their production in Week 2 may have had more to do with the complete inefficacy of the Giants offense. This, in turn, wore out the Giants defense. Dallas faces another shorthanded defensive unit this week in Seattle.
Cam Robinson, Jacksonville Jaguars (Knee, Out)
The Jaguars lost starting LT Cam Robinson for the season to a torn ACL. Jacksonville appears to be progressing toward more of a balanced approach and is allowing Blake Bortles to pass more. That said, he could be under more pressure with Robinson out. Undrafted James Madison product Josh Wells will take over at tackle.
Jon Halapio, New York Giants (Ankle, Out)
The Giants lost starting center Jon Halapio for the season with a broken ankle and will replace him with Jon Greco. Despite the steady presence of Nate Solder at LT, this unit is largely unable to protect Eli Manning and RT Ereck Flowers is a turnstile, who will likely get worked by J.J. Watt or Jadeveon Clowney (if active).
Andy Levitre, Atlanta Falcons (Arm, Out)
Andy Levitre will miss the rest of the season due to a triceps injury, the same injury that ended his 2017-18 campaign. Wes Schweitzer will fill in at left guard.
David DeCastro, Pittsburgh Steelers (Hand, Questionable)
A top-ranked lineman in 2017, David DeCastro was unable to suit up in Week 2 and it cost the Steelers running game. He has a “chance” to play in Week 3, but if he sits it would make a tough matchup even more daunting for fill-in RB James Conner.
Jared Veldheer, Denver Broncos (Concussion, Questionable)
Broncos RT Jared Veldheer is in concussion protocol. He was replaced by Billy Turner in a narrow win over Oakland last Sunday. Denver will hope Veldheer is cleared ahead of a very tough matchup in Baltimore next week.
Trai Turner, Carolina Panthers (Concussion, Questionable)
Trai Turner was inactive in Week 2; meanwhile, the Panthers offensive line struggled to protect Cam Newton. With both starting tackles — Matt Kalil and Daryl Williams — done for the year, this unit is extremely shorthanded.
Billy Price, Cincinnati Bengals (Concussion, Questionable)
The rookie was fitting in nicely on a much-improved Bengals offensive line, but Billy Price suffered a foot strain last Thursday. Trey Hopkins replaced Price in Week 2, but the Bengals may use UCLA product Alex Redmond at center.
Jack Conklin, Tennessee Titans (Knee, Questionable) – Updated 9/21
The Titans will get Taylor Lewan (concussion) back this Sunday, but will need Conklin as well to have any chance of blocking the Jaguars terrific trio of Calais Campbell, Marcell Dareus, and Malik Jackson.
Anthony Castonzo, Indianapolis Colts (Hamstring, Out) – Updated 9/21
Anthony Castonzo will remain out in Week 2, as will TE Jack Doyle (hip). Both of those players are key for Andrew Luck when facing a ferocious pass rush and the Eagles have just that.
Out for Extended Period: Isaiah Wynn, Matt Kalil, Daryl Williams, Seantrel Henderson, A.Q. Shipley, Pat Elflein, Josh Sitton
Trey Flowers, New England Patriots (Concussion, Doubtful) – Updated 9/21
Trey Flowers is one of the few Patriots lineman capable of generating a consistent pass rush. With him out, Blake Bortles had all day to throw in Week 2. Matthew Stafford could have similar opportunities this Sunday night.
Ezekiel Ansah, Detroit Lions (Shoulder, Questionable)
“Ziggy” Ansah was supposed to play in Week 2 but was ruled inactive. He should be ready by Sunday night, but if not, Tom Brady would likely have a clean pocket more often with the Lions missing their premier pass rusher.
Jadeveon Clowney, Houston Texans (Back, Probable) – Updated 9/21
Jadeveon Clowney sat out Week 2 with elbow and back ailments, but has been practicing on a limited basis and is expected to return this Sunday. With Clowney occupying LT Nate Solder, J.J. Watt will dominate against RT Ereck Flowers and harass Eli Manning all day.
Denico Autry, Indianapolis Colts (Ankle, Out) – Updated 9/21
The Colts will have a much tougher time generating pressure against the defending champion Eagles with Autry out.
Out for Extended Period: Joey Bosa, Corey Liuget, Timmy Jernigan, Vita Vea, Tyquan Lewis
Olivier Vernon, New York Giants (Ankle, Out) – Updated 9/21
The Giants defense was consistently put in bad spots by a washed-up Eli Manning. They’ll continue to struggle with Vernon out.
C.J. Mosley, Baltimore Ravens (Knee, Questionable)
Rising star C.J. Mosley suffered a bone bruise during the opening drive of Thursday’s loss to the Bengals. He’ll have 10 days to rest up and potentially return against the Broncos Sunday.
Mark Barron, Los Angeles Rams (Ankle, Doubtful)
Despite the absence of Mark Barron, the Rams defense has been historically good. They’ve allowed no points over their last 6 quarters of play and didn’t allow the Cardinals across midfield until the final minutes of Sunday’s beatdown. Should Barron return, Melvin Gordon would have a more difficult time running against this elite unit.
K.J. Wright, Seattle Seahawks (Knee, Questionable) – Updated 9/20
K.J. Wright may remain out, but Bobby Wagner (groin) and CB Tre Flowers (hamstring) are expected to return in Week 3. Seattle’s defense is still nowhere near the imposing force it used to be and Ezekiel Elliott should have a productive day in Seattle.
Out for Extended Period: Ryan Shazier, Jake Ryan, Vontaze Burfict, Thomas Davis, Deion Jones
Joe Haden, Pittsburgh Steelers (Hamstring, Probable) – Updated 9/21
With Joe Haden is practicing in full for a Week 3 matchup with Mike Evans and the Bucs Monday night.
Darius Slay, Detroit Lions (Concussion, Questionable) – Updated 9/21
The Lions lost difference-making CB Darius Slay to a concussion in a loss at San Francisco last Sunday. Slay practiced on Friday but still hasn’t been cleared for contact, putting his status in doubt. Nevin Lawson would be asked to step up against the Patriots passing attack.
Earl Thomas, Seattle Seahawks (Personal, Questionable) – Updated 9/21
The Seahawks defense is beset by injuries and Earl Thomas has a personal matter that is clouding his status for Week 3. His absence would be a big plus for Dak Prescott.
Eli Apple, New York Giants (Groin, Out)
Eli Apple has developed into a very solid corner opposite shutdown force Janoris Jenkins. With him out this Sunday, look for Texans WR Will Fuller to have another big day while Jenkins covers DeAndre Hopkins.
Kevin King, Green Bay Packers (Groin, Questionable)
Minnesota’s Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen absolutely flamed the Packers’ secondary on Sunday. To make matters worse, Green Bay lost a starting CB in Kevin King. If King is out in Week 3, Washington’s uninspiring receivers would have a chance to capitalize in a juicy matchup.
Patrick Chung, New England Patriots (Concussion, Doubtful) – Updated 9/21
The Patriots lost two key defenders to concussions in DE Trey Flowers and safety Patrick Chung. With both of those players now doubtful for a Week 3 tilt at Detroit, bump up Lions pass catchers Golden Tate and Kenny Golladay.
Phillip Gaines, Buffalo Bills (Arm, Out)
Bills slot CB Phillip Gaines was carted off with an arm injury, and Vontae Davis suddenly retired during halftime of Sunday’s home loss to the Chargers. Buffalo still has a capable CB in Tre’Davious White, but the patchwork DBs behind him are extremely vulnerable and stand little chance against Minnesota’s WR tandem.
Out for Extended Period: Jason Verrett, Eric Berry, Kevin Johnson, Jimmy Smith, Vernon Hargreaves, Ross Cockrell, Byron Maxwell, Daryl Worley, Daniel Sorensen, Keanu Neal
Greg Zuerlein, Los Angeles Rams (Groin, Out)
Greg Zuerlein has been placed on I.R. with a groin injury and Sam Ficken will once again take over as the kicker for a team that led the NFL in points last season. Ficken doesn’t have the same distance as “Greg the Leg,” but he’s a worthwhile option in fantasy.