Sam Bradford will miss the entire 2014 season with a torn left ACL. Bradford, whose 2013 season ended last October with the exact same injury, was a key piece of the Rams' hope to return to the Playoffs for the first time in a decade. Shaun Hill will step in and replace Bradford, but don't be surprised to see the Rams trade for another QB to come in and challenge Hill for the job. From a fantasy perspective, Bradford's injury should not affect the Rams' position players too drastically. Zac Stacy proved last season, fantasy points can still be scored in St. Louis without Bradford behind center. However, you may want to slightly downgrade Tavon Austin, Kenny Britt, and Jared Cook. It will, most likely, take time for Hill and his receivers to get on the same page, as the veteran QB will only have one preseason game to work with the first-team unit. That alone warrants a minor decrease in value for the Rams' receiving corps. Ultimately, once Hill is comfortable in the offense, he should be able to produce close to the same numbers as Bradford, at least in terms of fantasy.
Cam Newton suffered a hairline fracture in his ribs during the Panthers' Friday preseason tilt with the Patriots. Newton, who had offseason ankle surgery, has been a hot topic of discussion during fantasy draft season. Between the surgery, his lack of offensive weapons, and now the rib fracture, Newton's fantasy value is below where it has been in years past. He is expected to be ready for Week 1, however.
Wes Welker has been diagnosed with his third concussion in the past 10 months. Welker, who suffered the concussion taking a hit from Texans safety D.J. Swearinger in Denver's 18-17 preseason loss to Houston, has no timetable for his return. With Welker's concussion history, it would not be surprising to see the Broncos exercise caution. As a result, it is time to move Emmanuel Sanders up your draft boards. Sanders' viability as a fantasy WR was questioned in this space last week, based on injuries and a lack of rapport with Peyton Manning. Since then Sanders torched the Texans for 128 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the first half. It's still Welker's job if and when he gets healthy, but Sanders will have a role regardless, and if Welker has any setbacks it could be a significant one.
Carlos Hyde gained 38 yards on six carries in Sunday's preseason showdown with the Chargers. Hyde has been one of the stars of 49ers' camp, and seems to have solidified himself as the main backup to Frank Gore. Hyde has to be considered one of the top handcuffs in fantasy, and may have even played his way into a significant role in the 49ers' offense, regardless of Gore's ability to stay on the field.
Mark Ingram as fantasy relevant? Believe it or not, it is starting to look a legitimate possibility. Ingram, who gained 46 yards on eight carries in Saturday's preseason game against the Colts, has shined for the Saints throughout training camp and the preseason. The former first round pick has outplayed Khiry Robinson, and is looking more like the potential number one RB for New Orleans, as they head into the 2014 season.