Kenny Golladay (hip) has missed five consecutive games, Mark Andrews (COVID) will miss his second on Tuesday night, and Jonnu Smith (knee) missed a start against the Browns last week. These three pass-catchers are critical parts of fantasy football teams and with the fantasy playoffs here, owners will want to know if these players will be active or if they'll have to continue to rely on waiver wire streamers and sleepers to fill the voids left behind by these injuries.
Is Kenny Golladay playing this week?
Golladay (hip) has missed five consecutive games for the Lions and last logged a limited practice in the lead-up to Week 11. He was listed as limited on the Monday before the Lions' Thanksgiving game, but that was just on an estimated practice report with the Lions not actually in action.
At this point, it's unclear if and when Golladay might return this year, but considering that he was a non-participant in practice all of last week, he probably won't be able to return this week. To give fantasy owners and sort of confidence that he can come back and play, Golladay will at least need to get on the field in a limited fashion early in the week. If he can't, he'll likely be headed toward a sixth absence in a row.
If Golladay continues to miss time, Marvin Jones will continue to serve as the Lions' No. 1 receiver. He and T.J. Hockenson will be the only Lions pass-catchers worth starting, as Quintez Cephus and Danny Amendola both don't get enough volume to be flex plays. The latter two may be worth DFS fliers, but they shouldn't be trusted in season-long leagues during the fantasy playoffs.
Is Mark Andrews playing this week?
Andrews was one of the many Ravens to test positive for COVID-19 during the team's outbreak that postponed both their game against the Steelers and their game against the Cowboys. Andrews was added to the COVID list on Nov. 29, and since he had to quarantine for 10 days, it was expected he would miss both games.
However, ahead of Week 14, Andrews will at least be eligible to return from the COVID list. The 10-day threshold will have long since passed by the time they play against the Browns on Monday Night Football, so as long as Andrews isn't symptomatic and doesn't experience any complications from the illness, he will be able to return. He'll still need to be monitored closely, especially since he's playing on Monday night, but if he's activated from the COVID list, he should play.
In the event that Andrews can't play, Luke Willson will be the top tight end on the Ravens roster. They do have Eric Tomlinson available on the practice squad, as well. However, both of those players function more as blocking tight ends, so they wouldn't be worth starting in the fantasy playoffs, not even in a good matchup against the Browns.
Is Jonnu Smith playing this week?
Smith missed the Titans' loss to the Browns while dealing with a knee injury. He was a non-participant in practice all week, and it's fair to wonder whether he'll be able to play in a good matchup against the Jaguars. If he can't practice early in the week, he might be on track to miss another game.
Smith had just 12 catches for 117 yards and three total TDs (one rushing) in his past seven games, so it's likely that his downtick in production was related to that injury. If he can't get back on the field in Week 14, Anthony Firkser will be the Titans' top TE in that matchup. He caught five passes for 51 yards against the Browns, so he can be started as a TE1 if Smith is out again.