Fantasy Injury Updates: Latest news on Saquon Barkley, Christian McCaffrey, James Robinson, more affecting Week 9 start ’em, sit ’em calls

Things aren’t looking good for running backs Saquon Barkley, Christian McCaffrey, James Robinson, and Latavius Murray heading into Week 9, and plenty of fantasy football start ’em, sit ’em decisions hang in the balance. We’ve seen RB injuries come in bunches, so hopefully you have the necessary backups, handcuffs, and sleepers on your roster, but either way, you need to know the latest injury updates.

For updates on Dak Prescott and Kyler Murray, go here; for the latest on ailing pass-catchers Davante Adams, Julio Jones, Noah Fant, Calvin Ridley, and DeAndre Hopkins, click here; for news on banged-up RBs. For all the latest fantasy news, follow us on Twitter @SN_Fantasy.

WEEK 9 FANTASY: Sleepers | Busts | Start ’em, sit ’em

Saquon Barkley injury update

We’re all well aware Barkley (ankle) has been banged up all year, but after being placed on the reserve/COVID list, the prospects for a Week 9 return are even slimmer. After Adam Schefter reported Barkley turned in a negative test after his initial positive test, SNY’s Ralph Vacchiano reported he tested positive a second time. Barkley will have to test negative on two occasions, 24 hours apart, so it’s tough to tell whether that will happen. Even if it does, he’s still at risk to miss due to the ankle injury he suffered in Week 5. All in all, it sure doesn’t seem like he’ll be suiting up Sunday, but it’s not out of the question, yet.

If he does play, we can view him as a mid-tier RB1, but let’s face it, there’s always a risk he aggravates an injury or is on a snap count. If he’s out, it’s the Devontae Booker show once again. New York plays Las Vegas in Week 9, who gives up the 10th-most fantasy points to RBs, so Booker looks like a safe RB2.

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

Christian McCaffrey injury update

McCaffrey (hamstring) has been designated to return from injured reserve, but he was “pretty limited” in Wednesday’s practice according to Matt Rhule. Right now, the thinking is Chuba Hubbard will start one more game, but McCaffrey will be ready to go for Week 10. Of course, things can change, so it’s best to keep up with his status all the way to Sunday.

New England is statistically a middle-of-the-pack unit against RBs, but Austin Ekeler, Alvin Kamara, and Ezekiel Elliott are really the only RBs to have a major success. Against other RBs, they’ve been stout except for in garbage time. That said, don’t expect a monster performance from Hubbard unless he gets a ton of passing work or sneaks in a touchdown. We rank him as the RB18 in PPR and RB22 in standard leagues. His floor could be much lower if Ameer Abdullah takes a ton of touches from him again, though.

Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

James Robinson injury update

Robinson (heel) didn’t practice Wednesday, but we don’t know much about his situation beyond that. Thursday and Friday practice reports will tell us more about his Week 9 availability, so we’ll have to wait and see. This isn’t a serious injury, but one that could certainly sideline him for a game. Carlos Hyde (if healthy) should take on the primary back role and dominate touches if Robinson is out.

If he does play, we rank him as the RB12 in standard and RB9 in PPR leagues. That may seem high against a strong Buffalo defense, but with all the RB injuries around the league, he’s one of the few true workhorse backs in the league at this moment.

WEEK 9 DFS LINEUPS: FanDuel | DraftKings | Yahoo

Latavius Murray injury update

Murray (ankle) did not practice Wednesday, and he’s another guy who bears watching. The Week 8 bye evidently wasn’t enough time for him to heal up, so he’s in danger of missing another game. Murray seems to be the only Ravens’ RB who could assume a workhorse role, but in his absence, it’ll be another pure committee approach with Devonta Freeman, Le’Veon Bell, and Ty’son Williams. We rank those guys in the order they are mentioned.

If Murray does play, we view him as the RB36 in standard and RB37 in PPR. Minnesota is a top-12 team against fantasy RBs, and even if Murray returns, this should be a committee approach once again.

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