Whether it’s championship week or the first round, fantasy leagues are in the playoffs now, so you’ll be happy to hear that Adrian Peterson will be back this week.
If you don’t want potentially bad news on Ben Roethlisberger, stop reading now.
1. It was a day of rest for Roethlisberger, who still wore a walking boot and walked with a noticeable limp while watching his teammates practice. The extra day on the schedule will clearly be beneficial for Big Ben, with the Steelers waiting until Monday night for their tilt against San Francisco. So even though it’s Wednesday, it’s still very early in the week for Pittsburgh’s quarterback, and long-time Steelers beat writers are saying that with his pain tolerance, they’d be shocked if Roethlisberger doesn’t play.
2. Jimmy Graham was hobbled last week, and it showed when he posted his lowest yardage output since late October (55 receiving yards). The Saints tight end is still hurting, but his back injury won’t threaten his playing status.
3. Matt Hasselbeck didn’t practice Wednesday due to his calf injury, so Jake Locker could get his first NFL start this week. But Locker was limited in practice today too, although his chest injury isn’t nearly as serious.
4. Both Peterson and Christian Ponder made it through a full Vikings practice without any problems, and they’re on track to play when Minnesota hosts New Orleans.
5. Kevin Smith was able to stretch with his Lions teammates, but that’s about it. Unfortunately, the physical exertion required to play a game of football goes far beyond stretching.
6. If his finger is healed, Kyle Orton will start for the Chiefs this week against Green Bay. If not, then it’ll be former Iowa stud Ricky Stanzi getting his first career start. Tyler Palko has been knocked down to the No. 3 hole on Kansas City’s QB depth chart and put out of his misery by Romeo Crennel.
7. Wide receiver Denarius Moore returned to practice for the Raiders, but no one seems to know when we’ll see Darren McFadden in Oakland’s backfield again this year. At this point, replacing “when” with “if” is much more realistic.