Week 17 NFL Injury Wrap: Saints missing Alvin Kamara

Scott Pianowski

We’ve made it to the final Sunday of the regular season, and there’s a lot to catch up on. Here’s your status report:

• The Saints will have a makeshift backfield at Carolina, with Alvin Kamara going on the reserve/COVID-19 list. The Saints also lost the rest of its primary backfield for contact-tracing reasons, so Latavius Murray will not play. Ty Montgomery figures to get a bump in reps, albeit he’s a hybrid running back.

• Terry McLaurin (ankle) is going to try to play Sunday night at Philadelphia, a win-and-in game for the Football Team. Washington is also hopeful to have Alex Smith (calf) back at quarterback, and there’s a possibility Antonio Gibson (toe) could also play. I won’t risk any of these guys in DFS, given the uncertainty. If Smith can’t go or has a setback, Taylor Heinicke will play.

• Christian McCaffrey (thigh) is out and Mike Davis (ankle) is doubtful, which means Rodney Smith could be Carolina’s starter against New Orleans. Perhaps Curtis Samuel will see more rushing work than usual.

• Kyler Murray (leg) had full practices all week and will start at the Rams. But Chase Edmonds (hip) and Larry Fitzgerald (groin) are both questionable after sitting the full week. Dan Arnold (back) had full practice Thursday and Friday.

• Cooper Kupp (reserve/COVID-19 list) and Jared Goff (thumb) won’t play against Arizona. John Wolford is the new starting QB, with Blake Bortles added as the backup. Cam Akers (ankle) had a limited practice Friday and has a shot to play.

• The Packers lost star LT David Bakhtiari for the year; he tore his ACL at Thursday’s practice. Jamaal Williams (quad) had a full practice and will play at Chicago.

• Dalvin Cook won’t play Week 17 at Detroit; his father, James, died unexpectedly this week. Alexander Mattison (concussion) had a full session Friday and is expected to start.

• The Bills won’t have Cole Beasley (knee) against Miami, but John Brown had a full practice Friday and should play. Buffalo can be the AFC’s No. 2 or No. 3 seed, but with Pittsburgh likely to rest several players at Cleveland, it’s possible the Bills will give some rest to primary players here.

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• Ryan Fitzpatrick went on the reserve/COVID-19 list, so the Dolphins have no choice — it’s Tua Tagovailoa all the way at Buffalo. DeVante Parker (hamstring) had limited practice all week but he’s expected to go. Jakeem Grant (ankle) is also questionable off two limited practices. Mike Gesicki (shoulder) had a full practice week and was not on the final injury report.

• The Eagles are the only NFC East team eliminated, and that’s allowed them to rest several players in the finale against Washington. Fletcher Cox (neck), Dallas Goedert (calf), DeSean Jackson (ankle), and Miles Sanders (knee) are among the players ruled out. Boston Scott becomes the likely back of interest here.

• Although Matthew Stafford is battling a laundry list of injuries (thumb, ribs, ankle), he had a limited practice week and wants to go against Minnesota. Kenny Golladay (hip) won’t play.

The Patriots injury report is extensive, as usual — Bill Belichick is generally liberal with his designations. We know RB Damien Harris (ankle) won’t play, in addition to linemen David Andrews (calf) and Shaq Mason (calf). Belichick said Julian Edelman (knee) will not play.

• It’s not clear if Stephen Gostkowski (reserve/COVID-19 list) will be activated in time for the Houston game. A.J. Brown (ankle) had a full practice Friday.

• The Steelers are treating Week 17 as the bye week they never had. Several important players will be rested at Cleveland, notably Ben Roethlisberger, Chris Boswell, T.J. Watt, Cameron Heyward, and Maurkice Pouncey. Boswell has a groin injury; everyone else on that list is being held out for load management. Mason Rudolph will start at quarterback.

• Jarvis Landry (hip) practiced in full Friday and will play for the Browns in their must-win game. Cleveland is a 9.5-point favorite over Pittsburgh, a nod to how many Steelers are resting.

• The Texans won’t have LT Laremy Tunsil against Tennessee, but Duke Johnson (neck) might be able to play. Deshaun Watson (hand) is not on the injury report.

• Gus Edwards (back) had a limited practice Friday, putting him questionable for the finale against Cincinnati. Willie Snead (ankle) missed the full week.

• Tyler Boyd (concussion) and Tee Higgins (hamstring) both returned to full practice Friday, suggesting they’ll play against Baltimore.

• Golden Tate (calf) is unlikely to play for the Giants. Although Evan Engram (calf) and Gabriel Peppers (ankle) had limited work this week, neither was listed on the final injury report.

• Cole Kmet (shoulder) had two limited sessions to end the week. He’s listed as questionable. The Bears rested Jimmy Graham all week, but it was a load-management issue. Allen Robinson (hamstring) was not on the final injury report. Chicago makes the playoffs with a win or an Arizona loss.

[Week 17 Fantasy Rankings: QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | FLEX | DST | Kickers]

• The Jaguars will be without James Robinson (ankle) and DJ Chark (shin). Jacksonville has already wrapped up the No. 1 slot in the 2021 NFL Draft. Mike Glennon starts Sunday at Indianapolis.

• Julio Jones (hamstring) will miss his fourth straight game. He wound up playing nine times this season, finishing with a 51-771-3 line. His 11.3 yards per target were a career-best.

• Robbie Gould (reserve/COVID-19 list) will not kick against Seattle. The 49ers are also without Deebo Samuel (hamstring), Brandon Aiyuk (ankle), and Richard Sherman (calf).

• The Seahawks list Greg Olsen (foot) as questionable; he had a limited practice Friday. Chris Carson (foot) and Jamal Adams (hand) are not on the injury report.

• The Chiefs don’t have anything to play for and have already ruled out Patrick Mahomes, Tyreek Hill, Sammy Watkins, and Clyde Edwards-Helaire for the finale against the Chargers. There’s been no mention of Travis Kelce, but it’s plausible that he could play a partial game. Chad Henne gets the start at quarterback.

• Michael Pittman (concussion) ended the week with two straight practices and is likely to play against Jacksonville. Philip Rivers (toe) was a full participant the final two days and isn’t on the injury report.

• Keenan Allen and Hunter Henry (both on the reserve/COVID-19 list) won’t play at Kansas City. Although TE Donald Parham only saw three targets last week, he did play 81 percent of the snaps and had 47 receiving yards.

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