Fantasy Injury Updates: Cam Newton, Jimmy Garoppolo, Tyrod Taylor among QBs impacting Week 5 fantasy rankings

The biggest NFL news of the week came on Saturday when Cam Newton was placed on the COVID list and sent fantasy football owners into a tizzy trying to replace him. Newton was far from the only regular starting quarterback not in action in Week 4, however, as Jimmy Garoppolo, Tyrod Taylor, and Drew Lock were all out injured while Sam Darnold suffered a shoulder injury on Thursday night. These banged-up quarterbacks will have a big-time impact on our Week 5 fantasy QB rankings, and fantasy football owners looking for waiver wire streamers will want to pay close attention to the news surrounding these signal-callers.

For updates on injured RBs Raheem Mostert, Leonard Fournette, Phillip Lindsay, and more, click here; for the latest injury news on WRs Julio Jones, Michael Thomas, A.J. Brown, and Chris Godwin, click here. For more injury updates on these players and other players across the NFL, check back here and on Twitter @SN_Fantasy.

WEEK 5 STANDARD RANKINGS:
Quarterback  | Running back  | Wide receiver  | Tight end  | D/ST  | Kicker

Is Cam Newton playing in Week 5?

Newton missed the Patriots’ Week 4 loss to the Chiefs after being placed on the COVID list. Newton had tested positive for COVID-19 but was asymptomatic at the time of his diagnosis. That should be good news for his chances of returning earlier than expected.

According to Michael Davis Smith of Pro Football Talk, the Patriots are holding out hope that Newton can play against the Broncos in Week 5. For that to happen, Newton would have to test negative for the virus twice and the tests have to be at least 24 hours apart. If that happens, Newton will have a chance to suit up and start for the Patriots against the Broncos.

Of course, Newton’s fantasy owners can’t bank on that and should have a backup option available in case Newton can’t play. Thankfully, this is a solid week for quarterback streamers, so grabbing a guy like Teddy Bridgewater (@ Falcons) or Gardner Minshew (@ Texans) to replace Newton would be solid moves. There are other QB options available on the waiver wire, as well.

Also, if Newton can’t play, the Patriots’ receiving offense will receiver downgrades regardless of who starts at QB (Brian Hoyer or Jarrett Stidham). Julian Edelman would probably be the only member of that group that should be started while RBs Damien Harris, James White, and Rex Burkhead would all have upside in New England’s talented but unpredictable backfield.

Is Jimmy Garoppolo playing in Week 5?

Garoppolo (ankle) should have a chance to return to practice as early as this week, but his status for the 49ers-Dolphins game is very much up in the air. Kyle Shanahan said that he’s “still not sure about Jimmy” for the team’s upcoming game and that the team will assess where things are at during Wednesday’s practice, according to Chris Biderman of the Sacramento Bee.

If Garoppolo can’t play, it seems likely that C.J. Beathard would take over as the 49ers starter after Nick Mullens struggled against the Eagles and Beathard looked good in relief. Beathard, a former third-round pick out of Iowa, has a 1-9 record in 10 career starts, but his play wouldn’t be much of a downgrade, if any, from that of Mullens.

WEEK 5 PPR RANKINGS:
Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | Kicker

Tyrod Taylor injury update

Taylor (chest) hasn’t played since Week 1 after a freak injury he suffered while getting a pain injection before the Chiefs-Chargers game. Since then, Taylor has been out, and as Anthony Lynn said, per Daniel Popper of The Athletic, Taylor will remain week-to-week moving forward.

Given that Justin Herbert has averaged 310.3 passing yards and racked up six total TDs in his first three NFL starts, it’s safe to assume that he’s the starter moving forward in Los Angeles. That takes away Taylor’s fantasy relevance and will just make him a player to watch in two-QB and superflex leagues in case Lynn decides to go back to the veteran at any point.

Is Drew Lock playing in Week 5?

Lock (shoulder) has missed the Broncos’ past two games and has seen Jeff Driskel and Brett Rypien start in his place. Heading into Week 5 against the Patriots, Lock is considered a “legitimate 50-50 shot” to play, according to NFL Network’s James Palmer.

Lock playing would certainly give the Broncos a boost, as he has the best arm strength of the three QBs the team has used this year. Still, because the Broncos are playing a Patriots team that just held Patrick Mahomes’ Chiefs to 19 offensive points, it’s hard to trust many, if any, Broncos in a tough matchup. That said, Lock’s presence will impact our fantasy D/ST rankings, as the Patriots defense (currently ranked No. 2 overall) would have a slightly lower ceiling overall.

Sam Darnold injury update

Darnold played through a shoulder injury that he suffered midway through his Thursday night outing against the Broncos, but it doesn’t look like he will be doing that again. According to Manish Mehta of the NY Daily News, the Jets are planning on sitting Darnold in Week 5. The move would give Darnold extra time to recover from the injury at the expense of him playing against the Cardinals.

For the 0-4 Jets, sitting Darnold until he’s 100-percent healthy makes more sense than pushing him through a shoulder sprain. Joe Flacco would start in place of Darnold and Flacco’s presence would slightly downgrade the Jets’ weapons, but not all that much. Besides, only WR Jamison Crowder and RB Le’Veon Bell (if healthy) are really worth starting for the Jets at this point unless you’re in a two-QB league.

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