With the fantasy playoffs starting in most leagues in Week 14, the lack of injuries Sunday had to be encouraging for fantasy owners. There were three, though, that could have big waiver wire impacts and possible FLEX implications if you were paying attention. Kalen Ballage went down in Miami and could open the door to Patrick Laird. Preseason sleeper Ian Thomas could benefit from Greg Olsen’s concussion. And in Kansas City, there might actually be an opportunity for Darwin Thompson after Darrel Williams got hurt.
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Kalen Ballage injury update
Ballage left Sunday’s game with a non-contact leg injury that forced him to be carted off the field. He was initially announced as questionable to return before failing to make it back in the game. There was no update on his status after the game.
Ballage was already losing ground in the running back competition to Patrick Laird, who became the go-to back in Miami’s win after Ballage departed. Laird gets a boost in PPR leagues but could have value down the stretch in very favorable matchups of Jets, Giants and Bengals coming up. Snag Laird on waivers in PPR leagues. Myles Gaskin could also be involved and could have standard league value.
WEEK 14: Top Waiver Pickups
Greg Olsen injury news
Olsen was hit helmet-to-helmet Sunday and left the game with a concussion while the Redskins defender who hit him was ejected. Ian Thomas saw a season-high four targets in Olsen’s absence. Thomas caught all four passes for 24 yards.
We liked Thomas as a sleeper before the season, but he’s barely gotten on the field with Olsen healthy. If it turns out Olsen misses time, Thomas can be a TE option in deeper leagues down the stretch and would be a fine replacement for anyone rostering Olsen.
Darrel Williams injury outlook
Williams left Sunday’s game in the second half after injuring his right hamstring on a non-contact play. He had been involved in Kansas City’s offense with Damien Williams (ribs) out, a role Darwin Thompson took over once Darrel left.
There’s a lot of uncertainty here in regards to length of absence for both of the Williams, and LeSean McCoy continues to be used strategically. That means there’s a scenario where the rookie Darwin Thompson gets a lot of run down the stretch, and he’s available in basically every league and worth a speculative add while we wait to see how this plays out.