6 Injury Secrets for Fantasy Football!Tweet
Unfortunately, injuries are a part of the game. I never want us to forget that these players are humans first. However, it is my job is to help navigate the fantasy football waters when players are inevitably injured. I’ll cut through the fluff on this one. I want to share the 6 secrets I personally use to leverage injuries in fantasy football. Let’s dive in.
Secret 1: Be Informed
This is my favorite way to gain an edge on the opponent. Since you’re an informed fantasy football manager who has read my Hamstring Manifesto, you know that the average, grade I or II hamstring strain causes about 1-3 missed games. You also know that player X from team 1 just went down with a grade II , and his manager is panicking. You think to yourself: “I have a buy-low opportunity sitting right in front of me, don’t I?”
But first, does player X have a significant history of ACL or hamstring injuries? If no, send that manager a trade and don’t look back.
(Not all injuries are hamstring related. If another injury type comes up, feel free to reach out to me at email@example.com)
You use analysts in the fantasy industry for waiver wire help, start/sits, and air yards. Why wouldn’t you find a healthcare professional you trust to inform you on injuries? Since PT or medical school likely isn’t in the cards for many of you reading this, I recommend finding an injury analyst you trust. I also recommend researching the most common injuries in the NFL.
Secret 2: Stay Informed
Down loading an app with quick reports like Fantasy Life or even just subscribing to Timeskewpod’s notifications on Twitter can be key in leveraging injuries. Because you are informed and stay informed you know that 50% of all hamstring injuries occur in practice. So, you have your push notifications on and the second there is a report of an injury, you make a move. Last year for some reason a league mate dropped a player’s handcuff right before the starter was injured in practice. I got a nice little notification and snatched him up from my opponent for that week who needed him. Remember, you don’t have to start the players you snipe!
Secret 3: Sell High
This dovetails perfectly off being informed, you know that hamstring injuries can implicate the ACL. You also know that recurring hamstring strains on their own are a scary thing to deal with. So, what’s a fantasy manager to do? Sell high! I utilized this exact secret in 2018 with Will Fuller. A quick search on Fuller’s injury history determined that it was against my better judgement to keep him off the waiver wire. So, after a big performance, I offered Fuller in a trade that included Keenan Allen, and it was accepted! The key is staying informed so you know when these opportunities are available.
Secret 4: Buy Low*
Another actionable piece of injury advice is to buy low on players whose injuries seem like flukes or will only cause a short period of missed time. For example in 2018, Joe Mixon hurt his knee and the reports on his return were murky. Because I stayed informed, I knew Mixon could be back as early as two weeks. With this information, I offered the Mixon owner a still healthy Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman for the injured Mixon and his handcuff, Gio Bernard. Like magic, he accepted and two weeks later I had a healthy Joe Mixon. Freeman would later get placed on the IR. For those of you wondering, yes, at this point I had Keenan Allen and Joe Mixon on my team for a discount!
*I want to take this time to again emphasize that although I refer to these players as simple commodities, they are human beings dealing with real life injuries, and I always keep that in mind. The goal is to analyze these injuries and find ways to help you win your fantasy league.*
*Knowledge is key in secrets 3 and 4, but because you follow me on Twitter @FFStudentDoc, you get that for free.
Secret 5: Consider a Handcuff
This tip does not read “always handcuff.” More specifically, consider handcuffing your stud running back with a history of, for example, hamstring or quad strains. Also ensure that their handcuff has a clear path to the starting job. I say this because Chris Raybon (@Chrisraybon) from actionnetwork.com constantly cites that lead running backs miss on average 2 games per season. It’s a nuanced topic and I’m extremely conservative as a manager, but from an injury perspective, it can save your season. A perfect example of a low-cost handcuff for 2019 is Giovani Bernard. Joe Mixon has a history of intra-articular (inside the joint) knee issues and Gio is dirt cheap going at #245 overall according to fantasypros.com. That’s more than affordable. If you can swing it from a roster construction standpoint, handcuffing your stud can be a Cadillac insurance plan.
Secret 6: Real Recognize Real
Here’s what I mean with that: Over the span of three years, Keenan Allen suffered a broken collar bone, a torn ACL, and a lacerated kidney. It doesn’t take a medical degree to recognize how fluky those injuries are. They are unrelated and simply a product of bad luck. So what has Allen done since then? Finished as a top 20 wide receiver the last two years with minimal injury concerns. Don’t let others’ label of “injury prone” shape your opinion without researching it yourself. Real. Recognize. Real.
So there are the six secrets to leverage injuries in fantasy football.
Make sure to follow me on Twitter @FFStudentDoc and please, if you enjoyed this article share it and retweet it!
If you have specific injury questions, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
6 Injury Secrets for Fantasy Football!Tweet
I'm a 3rd year Doctor of Physical Therapy Student with a special interest in orthopedic rehabilitation and human performance. Fantasy football is my hobby that slowly morphed into a part-time job.
My wife and I have two maltese dogs and a rabbit. We love to travel and drink craft beer. Please don't hesitate to e-mail me with any questions.