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Key fantasy football injury outlooks for Week 12

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Tate trending down for Week 12 (1:29)

Matthew Berry explains why Golden Tate makes the Hate list against the Giants. (1:29)

Hopefully everyone had an enjoyable Thanksgiving and is ready for the second wave of football games in Week 12. With three games already played and two teams on bye, there are just 12 matchups remaining. As always, there are injuries fantasy players should be aware of before setting their final lineups for the weekend.

For reference, players might be classified on the team's final injury report of any given week as "questionable (Q)," "doubtful (D)" or "out." Besides the obvious designation of a player being ruled out, "questionable" indicates a player is uncertain to play, while "doubtful" means a player is unlikely to play.

Since the NFL did away with the "probable" designation two years ago, players who are expected to play on Sunday (or Monday) are simply removed from the injury report by the reporting deadline (Friday evening for Sunday games, Saturday afternoon for Monday night games).

For the purposes of this injury-related game preview, players will be grouped by position. Below each player's name, team, injured body part (as listed on the official NFL injury report), official game-status designation and game time (ET), the following elements are included: any known relevant details about the injury, the player's involvement in practice during the week and any additional notes to provide context around the player's status.

For anyone seeking more specific details about certain types of injuries, here is an illustrated injury glossary, which you also can find on the right side of the ESPN fantasy home page.

Also, please check out my Answering the Bell podcast in which we take a deeper dive into various medical topics with special guests, including experts in their respective fields, as well as athletes who have firsthand experience with various injuries or medical conditions. All episodes are archived here.

This week there are just two teams on bye: the Kansas City Chiefs and the Los Angeles Rams.

And now, onto the Sunday/Monday games preview:


Quarterbacks

Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers, right shoulder (off pregame injury report), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report four weeks ago

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Thursday; full Friday

Notes: Newton's routine is well-established by now, and there is no doubt about his availability for Sunday.

Tom Brady, New England Patriots, knee/illness (Q), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report this week

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Thursday; DNP Friday (Note: The Patriots did not conduct a practice Thursday, so the report is an estimation.)

Notes: Normally a downgrade in a Friday practice session would sound off major alarm bells, but in the case of Brady, a day off late in the week that allows him to overcome an illness and play Sunday is warranted. As of now, the expectation is that Brady will start, but fantasy players are advised to confirm with pregame inactives.

Marcus Mariota, Tennessee Titans, neck (off pregame injury report), Monday night

Additional injury details: Injured in Week 11

Practice report: Limited Thursday, full Friday-Saturday

Notes: Mariota suffered a stinger in his Week 11 game, and after taking the big hit that forced his neck sideways, he could be seen shaking out his hand and opening and closing his fingers as if to try to get the feeling back in them. This was so reminiscent of how he looked after suffering a nerve injury in his elbow earlier this season that many assumed it was his elbow that was injured again. The same nerve tissue can be part of what is impacted by a stinger, which is what made this latest injury so notable for Mariota. The good news is that Mariota reportedly looked solid in Friday's practice, which prompted coach Frank Reich to say that he expected Mariota to start. Barring a setback, Mariota is expected to be under center Monday night when the Titans face the Texans.

Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills, right elbow (off pregame injury report), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Right UCL sprain; injured in Week 6

Practice report: Full Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Allen has been gradually working his way back from an ulnar collateral ligament sprain, and his full practice sessions throughout the week appear to have convinced coach Sean McDermott he is ready to return. Allen will start against the Jags on Sunday.

Ryan Tannehill, Miami Dolphins, right shoulder (off pregame injury report), 4:25 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Injured in Week 5; right shoulder capsular injury

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Friday

Notes: It has been six weeks since Tannehill injured the capsule in his right shoulder when he was hit while making his throwing motion. During the five-game span (plus one bye week) that he has missed, the focus has been on first allowing the symptoms to subside, then working on increasing the distance and velocity of his throws. Apparently Tannehill has reached the point where the Dolphins are comfortable he can make the necessary throws in a game situation. He might not be out of the woods yet as far as feeling confident in his shoulder for the remainder of the season, but this Sunday will be a good first test.

Joe Flacco, Baltimore Ravens, right hip (out), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Injured in Week 9 (bye in Week 10)

Practice report: DNP Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Flacco did not return to practice this week and has already been ruled out in advance of Sunday's enticing matchup against the Raiders. Another Lamar Jackson start it is.

Running backs

Melvin Gordon, Los Angeles Chargers, hamstring/knee (Q), 4:05 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report this week

Practice report: Full Wednesday; limited Thursday-Friday

Notes: Gordon was originally listed as a full participant Wednesday with a hamstring issue, not altogether surprising given that he missed a game in Week 7 because of it. On Thursday however, Gordon's status changed to a limited participant in practice, the result of a sore knee. On Friday, coach Anthony Lynn acknowledged it was the sore knee that was responsible for Gordon's questionable status. He told reporters that it's that time of year when most starting running backs are dealing with some sort of physical ailment, adding, "so we'll have to decide if it's worth holding him back (Sunday) or just letting him go." Looking ahead at the Chargers' remaining matchups, it would seem this could be an ideal week to rest Gordon knowing the team has much tougher opponents in the upcoming weeks. According to ESPN.com's Eric Williams, Gordon is shaping up to be a true game-time decision, a situation that's sure to frustrate fantasy players who will be forced to either make alternate plans or wait until the late game announcements are made.

Sony Michel, New England Patriots, knee (Q), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: August procedure to address knee swelling; Added back to injury report four weeks ago; new knee injury in Week 7

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Michel returned to action in Week 10, but, as expected, his workload was controlled as he played just 17 offensive snaps. More importantly, he emerged from that game without a setback and has now had an additional week of rest for his knee. While he might still fall short of a full complement of snaps, the expectation is that Michel will see more time on the field in Week 12. It is always worth verifying a player's status pregame, but expect Michel to play, barring a setback, and to play more than he did in his last outing.

Kenyan Drake, Miami Dolphins, shoulder (off pregame injury report), 4:25 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report in Week 9

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Drake has been on the injury report because of his shoulder since before the team's Week 11 bye. It has not kept him out of any games so far, and his removal from the pregame injury report indicates he is expected to play again this week.

Alex Collins, Baltimore Ravens, foot (Q), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report Thursday

Practice report: DNP Thursday; full Friday

Notes: Collins has been listed on the injury report previously this season because of his foot but has managed to play through it. Despite not practicing Thursday, he turned around for a full session Friday. Barring a setback following the full session or in pregame Sunday, it appears Collins will play. That said, Gus Edwards and Lamar Jackson accounted for the bulk of the rushing yards in Week 11, and one has to wonder if that'll be the case again this week.

Doug Martin, Oakland Raiders, ankle (off pregame injury report), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to the injury report this week

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Friday (Note: Oakland conducted a walk-through on Wednesday, so the practice report is an estimation.)

Notes: Martin was added to this week's injury report with an ankle issue after he twisted it during last week's game and missed the second half. He participated daily on a limited basis, and his removal from the pregame injury report indicates he is expected to play.

Peyton Barber, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, ankle/shoulder (off pregame injury report), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Injured in Week 7

Practice report: Full Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Despite his presence on the injury report for multiple weeks, Barber has continued to play, and he has increased his practice effort each week. This week he turned in full practices daily, putting the injury situation more and more in the rearview mirror. It does appear that fellow back Ronald Jones (Q), who has missed multiple games with a hamstring injury, has a chance to return given that he practiced in full throughout this week as well. If he does play, it's not likely he'll threaten Barber's workload, as he has asserted himself in recent weeks.

Austin Ekeler, Los Angeles Chargers, neck (off pregame injury report), 4:05 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report this week

Practice report: Limited Wednesday; full Thursday-Friday

Notes: Ekeler started the week off limited but finished strong and does not appear on the team's pregame injury report. With the possibility looming of Melvin Gordon sitting this one out with a sore knee, there could be a substantial workload for Ekeler.

Wide receivers

Adam Thielen, Minnesota Vikings, back/calf (off pregame injury report), 8:20 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report last week

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Thursday; full Friday

Notes: Last week Thielen played after being listed with the same injuries. This week he added a full practice on Friday. His name was removed from the final pregame injury report, so there are no worries with regard to his status heading into the Sunday night game.

DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans, foot (off pregame injury report), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Injured in Week 2

Practice report: Limited Thursday-Saturday

Notes: The only change for Hopkins this week is that the injury report for the Texans runs from Thursday to Saturday since they play on Monday night. He has been limited in some fashion since Week 2 but has not missed a game and is a consistent No. 1 receiving option.

Keenan Allen, Los Angeles Chargers, finger (off pregame injury report), 4:05 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report last week

Practice report: Full Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Allen played through this injury in Week 11 without any apparent issue. This week his practice participation increased to full sessions daily, and his removal from the pregame injury report cements his availability.

Julian Edelman, New England Patriots, ankle (off pregame injury report), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report three weeks ago

Practice report: Full Wednesday, Thursday; not on injury report Friday

Notes: Edelman was again removed from Friday's injury report (just as he was in Week 10) and this time he put in full practice sessions on both Wednesday and Thursday. His removal from the pregame injury report solidifies his Sunday status.

Danny Amendola, Miami Dolphins, hamstring (Q), 4:25 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report this week

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Amendola is coming off a bye with a new injury designation making it hard to determine when and how the issue first appeared as well as the severity. There doesn't appear to be overwhelming concern from the Dolphins regarding Amendola's status, but fantasy players are advised to have a backup plan in place in the event he doesn't play.

Doug Baldwin, Seattle Seahawks, groin (Q), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report this week

Practice report: DNP Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Coach Pete Carroll is calling Baldwin a game-time decision after he was a nonparticipant in practice throughout the week. After such a strong outing in Week 11, when Baldwin actually looked like he was finally moving without pain, it's unfortunate to see him back in limbo again due to a soft tissue injury. This is a relatively rare early kickoff for the Seahawks, so fantasy players will have an answer early, but Baldwin's outings this season have been up and down along with his health, making this a difficult call.

DeSean Jackson, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, thumb (Q), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Injured in Week 11

Practice report: Limited Wednesday; full Thursday-Friday

Notes: Jackson injured his thumb in his Week 11 game and left briefly as a result, but he was able to return and, more importantly, catch passes afterward. That along with his back-to-back practices late in the week suggest he should be able to play again this Sunday. Fantasy players are still advised to confirm his status when pregame inactives are released.

Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, ankle (off pregame injury report), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report last week

Practice report: Full Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Godwin injured his ankle in Week 10 but returned to play in Week 11 with no apparent ill effects. This week he was able to practice in full each day, and his removal from the pregame injury report indicates he will again take the field.

Keke Coutee, Houston Texans, hamstring (off pregame injury report), Monday night

Additional injury details: Original injury in preseason; appeared on injury report again in Week 5

Practice report: Limited Thursday-Friday; full Saturday

Notes: Coutee played in his first game since Week 7 last Sunday and handled a sizable role. He appears to be on the other side of his latest setback with his hamstring and managed a full practice Saturday before being removed from the pregame injury report. Perhaps the increased role will continue for him, as long as the hamstring issue does not resurface.

Tyrell Williams, Los Angeles Chargers, quadricep (Q), 4:05 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report this week

Practice report: DNP Wednesday; limited Thursday-Friday

Notes: No details have been given as to why Williams was an addition to the injury report this week with a quad ailment. On the plus side, he was able to log back-to-back practices late in the week. However, they were both limited sessions, and he remains questionable for Sunday's game. With this contest kicking off late, fantasy players might want to pursue other options.

Jordy Nelson, Oakland Raiders, knee (Q), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report this week

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Nelson did not play in Week 11 after not practicing at all due to a knee injury. He did upgrade to limited work daily this week but remains a question mark heading into Sunday. This is an unusual early kickoff for the Raiders, so fantasy owners who are considering Nelson at least will have his official status early enough to react.

A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals, toe (D), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report in Week 10; DNP Weeks 10-11

Practice report: DNP Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Despite reports last week that Green was looking likely to return in Week 12, it now appears that he will sit once again. Green has not yet participated in formal practice sessions and was downgraded to doubtful on Saturday (from his original designation of questionable on Friday). His return is postponed for at least one more week.

Devin Funchess, Carolina Panthers, back (D), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Injured in Week 11

Practice report: DNP Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Funchess appeared to be visibly in pain at times in his Week 11 game, perhaps the result of back spasms which might have contributed to his poor outing. Clearly the issue has been lingering throughout the week as he was unable to participate in any form of practice. The doubtful tag indicates just how unlikely it is that Funchess takes the field for the Panthers on Sunday.

Tight ends

Greg Olsen, Carolina Panthers, foot (off pregame injury report), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Refractured foot in Week 1

Practice report: Limited Wednesday; full Thursday-Friday

Notes: This is the routine practice pattern for Olsen this season since his return from a foot injury. He put in full practices late in the week and is off the pregame injury report heading into Sunday.

Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots, ankle/back (Q), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Added to injury report seven weeks ago; back added in Week 7

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Friday

Notes: Gronkowski has missed three of the Patriots' last four games due to ongoing challenges with his back. Entering the team's Week 11 bye, it sounded as if he was making progress and had potential to return in Week 12. Despite the limited practice sessions and questionable designation, Gronkowski does indeed appear on track to play, telling ESPN.com's Mike Reiss after Friday's practice, "Definitely ready to get back there. I'm good to go." While this doesn't mean he's not at risk for the issue cropping up again, the encouraging piece is that Gronkowski is eager and ready to return to game action on Sunday.

David Njoku, Cleveland Browns, knee (Q), 1 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: First appeared on injury report five weeks ago

Practice report: Limited Wednesday-Thursday; full Friday

Notes: Njoku has played through his injury thus far, but the questionable tag makes his status uncertain. He has been up and down in terms of productivity in the last month. In two of his last four games, he totaled just one reception for 18 yards; in the other two, he accumulated 108 yards and a touchdown on eight catches. Thankfully, this is an early game, so fantasy players looking to start Njoku will have options.

Jimmy Graham, Green Bay Packers, thumb (Q), 8:20 p.m. ET

Additional injury details: Injured in Week 11, fractured left thumb

Practice report: DNP Wednesday; limited Thursday-Friday

Notes: It seemed highly unlikely at the start of the week that Graham would have a shot to play this Sunday, yet here we are. Coach Mike McCarthy said Graham's intention would be to "try to go" if he could find a way to be play through the thumb fracture. Working with the medical staff to try various taping mechanisms to splint his thumb, Graham was a participant in practice, catching passes for media members to see. What isn't known is just how he felt after that practice or whether it's enough to hold up to game conditions, hence the questionable tag. If the Packers have decided, they haven't yet shared it, and this is a Sunday night game. While the effort to play through a broken thumb is admirable and reflects Graham's toughness, it might not be helpful for fantasy players depending on passes caught for points. In fact, Graham has just one catch in three of his last four games ... and in two of those there was no thumb issue to blame. With limited options left if Graham does not play on a Sunday night, or, a more likely scenario of wondering what to expect if he does play with the injured thumb, fantasy players have to evaluate whether the risk is worth the potential reward here.