Updates On Mike Evans, Michael Pittman, Tee Higgins, And More

It has been another busy week on the wide receiver injury report with a number of important players missing practice in Week 2. Let’s examine the fantasy football impact of the latest injury updates after 26 NFL injury reports were finalized on Friday.

WR injury report for Week 2

Mike Evans, TB | Calf

Official game designation: Questionable

On Wednesday, we saw Mike Evans at practice with his calf taped before he was listed as a limited participant. He was then downgraded to a non-participant on Thursday but was able to return to the field on Friday. He was listed as questionable on the Buccaneers’ final injury report.

The Buccaneers are in a weird spot with their receivers. Chris Godwin is out, and Evans, Julio Jones, Russell Gage, and Breshad Perriman all carried injury designations this week. If Evans is active, he should be good to start. The injury appeared to cause little discomfort on Wednesday, and the Thursday absence was considered by many to be a cautious move, especially as he returned Friday. If he is out, then Jones, Gage, and Perriman all see a boost in value providing they take the field.

Michael Pittman, IND | Quad

Official game designation: Questionable

Michael Pittman was a surprise inclusion on the Colts’ injury report Wednesday with a quad injury. He was listed as limited on Wednesday before being absent Thursday. The Colts only did a walkthrough practice on Friday, and Pittman was once again listed as a non-participant. However, when head coach Frank Reich was asked about Pittman, he said, “I’m optimistic Pitt will be fine.” It is unclear what that means for his status Sunday.

We will now likely have to wait for Sunday to find out if Pittman is active. However, it is tough to know what you should do with him from a fantasy aspect if he is. You always want to play your stars, but we simply have no idea what workload Pittman might see. Players are sometimes listed as active only to see the field on game day as a decoy to help open up the offense. If you have a solid starting option to use in his place, it might be best to sit Pittman this weekend.

Tee Higgins, CIN | Concussion

Official game designation: Questionable

Things started off positively for Higgins this week, as he was able to progress through the protocol enough to get a limited practice in on Wednesday. Alarm bells started to ring when he was absent on Thursday, but that was due to a personal matter as opposed to being related to his injury. Higgins was then able to practice Friday in full. He will carry a questionable tag into the weekend.

There is optimism that Higgins will be active come Sunday. He still has some hurdles to clear over the weekend, but the Bengals believe he is on track. The good thing with the concussion protocol is that a player is either clear or he is not. Therefore, if Higgins passes the protocol and is active, fantasy managers should feel reasonably comfortable to start him on Sunday.

Allen Lazard, GB | Ankle

Official game designation: Questionable

Allen Lazard managed to log three straight days of limited practices. Ahead of Friday’s practice, head coach Matt LaFleur said that Lazard would go through some team reps and they would see how he felt after practice before making a final decision. Lazard was then listed as questionable by the Packers heading into the weekend.

Ultimately, Lazard has the potential to be the WR1 for the Packers, but that might not be the case in Week 2 if he’s on a snap count. The Packers could look to ease Lazard back in this week, making it tough to start him in your fantasy lineups against the Bears. Additionally, not having full clarity of his situation until late Sunday will limit options for managers if he is ruled out. It might be best to plan on waiting one more week before inserting Lazard into starting lineups.

Chris Godwin, TB | Hamstring

Official game designation: Out

As we suspected, Chris Godwin has been ruled out after injuring his hamstring in Week 1. There is optimism that the injury is not a long-term concern and that we could see him back within the next couple of weeks. If he is not placed on the IR over the weekend, then the hope will be he can return sometime between now and Week 5.

Julio Jones, TB | Knee

Official game designation: Questionable

After missing practice on Wednesday and Thursday, Julio Jones returned in a limited fashion on Friday. He will carry a questionable tag into the weekend and is an intriguing situation this week. With Godwin out, there is the opportunity for Jones to have a substantial role in the offense. However, we have no idea how much he will be able to play this week, making him a tough player for fantasy managers to trust.

Russell Gage, TB | Hamstring

Official game designation: Questionable

For the second straight week, Russell gage was dealing with a hamstring injury in practice. He was a non-participant on Wednesday before getting limited practices in on Thursday and Friday. He is another player who has the chance for a step up in usage with Godwin sidelined. That said, as you can tell by now, projecting the usage of the Bucs’ wideouts this week is nearly impossible.

Michael Gallup, DAL | Knee

Official game designation: Out

For the second straight week, Michael Gallup has been ruled out heading into the weekend. In Gallup’s absence, the Cowboys will have CeeDee Lamb and Noah Brown as likely starters. They also have KaVontae Turpin, Simi Fehoko, Dennis Houston, and Jalen Tolbert on their roster. Last week Tolbert was a healthy scratch, so it remains to be seen if the 2022 third-round pick will see the field.

In terms of fantasy value, it will be hard to trust any of the Cowboys’ pass catchers this week. We simply do not know what this offense will look like with Cooper Rush under center. If you drafted Lamb, you’re likely counting on him as an every-week starter regardless of who’s at quarterback, but Dallas’ other wideouts shouldn’t be in starting lineups.

If you simply have no other choice, just know that Brown saw nine targets in the Week 1 loss to Tampa Bay and is probably the best dart throw of the bunch.

Wan’Dale Robinson, NYG | Knee

Official game designation: Out

Wan’Dale Robinson was unable to participate in practice leading up to Week 2 due to a knee injury suffered in the season-opener. He was ruled out by the Giants on Friday and will likely try to work his way back in time for Week 3.

From a fantasy aspect, this means there should be little impediment to Kenny Golladay, Richie James, and Sterling Shepard being the main three receivers for the Giants this week. James had the most targets last week, but it was Shepard who posted the best fantasy day thanks to a breakaway touchdown.

Kadarius Toney, NYG | Hamstring

Official game designation: Questionable

Showing up on the injury report pretty much sums up Kadarius Toney’s career to this point. He enters the weekend with a questionable tag, meaning there is hope that he can suit up this weekend. With Robinson out, the Giants’ depth at wide receiver is being tested early in the season.

Toney is actually listed as a starter on the Giants’ depth chart on their official site, ahead of Shepard. However, Shepard played many more snaps than Toney in Week 1. With that and Toney’s injury in mind, it makes little sense to start him regardless of whether he’s active. If Toney and Robinson are absent, David Sills and Darius Slayton will provide depth for the Giants.

Alec Pierce, IND | Concussion

Official game designation: Out

Despite finishing the game against the Houston Texans on Sunday, Alec Pierce entered the concussion protocol earlier this week. He was not able to clear enough of the concussion protocol to earn the questionable tag heading into the weekend.

Pierce is listed as one of three starting wide receivers on the Colts’ depth chart. The other listed starters are Pittman and Parris Campbell. Listed behind Pierce is second-year WR Mike Strachan, with Dezmon Patmon listed third (although the latter is currently on the practice squad).

K.J. Hamler, DEN | Knee/Hip

Official game designation: Out

After seeing just one target in Week 1, K.J. Hamler will miss the Week 2 game against the Houston Texans. He has not practiced all week, so this is hardly a surprise. Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy, Javonte Williams, Melvin Gordon, and Albert Okwuegbunam remain the main fantasy assets in Denver right now.

Van Jefferson, LAR | Knee

Official game designation: Out

After Van Jefferson was once again unable to practice in Week 2, Sean McVay confirmed that the Rams WR3 would be out this week. Similar to last week, Ben Skowronek is expected to operate as the WR3. Skowronek actually finished with more targets than Allen Robinson against the Bills, so he is an intriguing play in deeper leagues. That said, Robinson should be more involved this time around, so Skowronek’s potential as a starter should be limited to 12-team leagues, at best.

Rondale Moore, ARI | Hamstring

Official game designation: Out

Rondale Moore was unable to make it onto the practice field in Week 2 as he continues to recover from a hamstring injury that he picked up in practice last week. Head coach Kliff Kingsbury ruled Moore, as well as fellow WR Andy Isabella, out on Friday.

With DeAndre Hopkins suspended, Greg Dortch is expected to play alongside Marquise Brown, and A.J. Green. The only other option currently on the depth chart is Andre Baccellia. The Cardinals will likely elevate either Jeff Cotton or Javon Wims from the practice squad ahead of Sunday’s game.

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