Commentary

Week 6 inactives

Updated: October 14, 2012, 7:09 PM ET
By Tristan H. Cockcroft | ESPN.com

Welcome to Week 6 of the 2012 NFL season. Here we'll be posting "live" updates and analysis as NFL teams release their inactive lists. Refresh often for the latest information. For a complete list of NFL inactives, click here.

Ruled out before Sunday: WR Danny Amendola (shoulder), RB Andre Brown (concussion), RB Donald Brown (knee), QB Matt Cassel (concussion), WR Julian Edelman (hand), RB Peyton Hillis (ankle), WR Greg Jennings (groin), WR Mohamed Massaquoi (hamstring), RB Daniel Thomas (concussion).

Top players we're watching

Early games (1 p.m. ET)

S T.J. Ward (hand, questionable): active

Late games (4 p.m. ET)

RB Brandon Bolden (knee, questionable): active
WR Pierre Garcon (foot, questionable): inactive
QB Robert Griffin III (head, questionable): active
TE Rob Gronkowski (hip, questionable): active
TE Aaron Hernandez (ankle, questionable): active
RB Brandon Jacobs (knee, questionable): inactive
WR Hakeem Nicks (foot, questionable): active
RB Shane Vereen (foot, questionable): active
WR Wes Welker (ankle, questionable): active

Night game (8:20 p.m. ET)

TE Jermichael Finley (shoulder, questionable): active

Updates/analysis (most recent first)

Arian Foster active (7:09 p.m. ET): The Houston Texans' official Twitter feed reports that RB Arian Foster (knee, probable) is active. Foster is our No. 1 running back for the week, as he is for most weeks. Expect more fantasy goodness as he continues to rank among the weekly leaders in touches.

Shayne Graham active (7:09 p.m. ET): The Houston Texans' official Twitter feed reports that K Shayne Graham (right calf, probable) is active. Graham checks in as our No. 9 kicker for the week.

Andre Johnson active (7:09 p.m. ET): The Houston Texans' official Twitter feed reports that WR Andre Johnson (groin, probable) is active. Johnson hasn't been the superstar fantasy wideout everyone expected what with the Texans leaning so heavily upon the run, but this is a favorable matchup for him that could lead to some solid stats. He's our No. 13 wideout for the week.

Ben Tate active (7:09 p.m. ET): The Houston Texans' official Twitter feed reports that RB Ben Tate (toe, probable) is active. Tate returns to his backup role this week, though he shouldn't touch the football frequently enough to be more than a low-end flex. He's our No. 33 running back for the week.

Jermichael Finley active (7:06 p.m. ET): The Green Bay Packers' official Twitter feed reports that TE Jermichael Finley (shoulder, questionable) is active. He'll presumably be playing at less than full health, but if you took a chance and waited on Finley, his active status provides your "OK" to keep him in there. We ranked him our No. 16 tight end for the week, so hope you took that into account before deciding whether to wait.

Robert Griffin III active (3:08 p.m. ET): The Washington Redskins' official Twitter feed reports that QB Robert Griffin III (head, questionable) is active. We rank Griffin our No. 5 quarterback for Week 6, but we also did so under the assumption that Pierre Garcon is going to play. Perhaps this hurts him a couple spots, but it's still a precipitous drop for him to fall out of the top 10 -- he wouldn't slip out of mine -- so he'll still shape up as a clear starter in all formats. Merely temper your expectations slightly.

Pierre Garcon inactive (3:06 p.m. ET): The Washington Redskins' official Twitter feed reports that WR Pierre Garcon (foot, questionable) is inactive. It's the unexpected news of the day; Garcon was by most preliminary reports this week supposed to play. This is a real negative for Robert Griffin III's matchup, not that it makes Griffin a sit necessarily, but temper your expectations somewhat. The Redskins might evenly split up the receiving chores between Aldrick Robinson and Leonard Hankerson in Garcon's absence, but neither is a recommended fill-in.

Brandon Jacobs inactive (3:04 p.m. ET): The San Francisco 49ers' official Twitter feed reports that RB Brandon Jacobs (knee, questionable) is inactive. He continues to struggle with injuries, and at this point seems like a waste of a roster spot in fantasy.

Alex Smith active (3:04 p.m. ET): The San Francisco 49ers' official Twitter feed reports that QB Alex Smith (right finger, probable) is active. Smith's status was more of a concern early in the practice week than late, and he has a decent enough matchup on the lower tiers. He's our No. 17 quarterback this week, meaning two-QB league starter material.

Percy Harvin active (3:02 p.m. ET): The Minnesota Vikings' official Twitter feed reports that WR Percy Harvin (hamstring, probable) is active. He's our No. 3 wideout for the week, thanks to both a healthy number of weekly touches as well as an extremely favorable matchup against the poor Redskins pass D.

Adrian Peterson active (3:02 p.m. ET): The Minnesota Vikings' official Twitter feed reports that RB Adrian Peterson (ankle, probable) is active. Peterson has performed at a high level since his recovery from knee surgery, and we rank him our No. 7 running back for the week. Make sure to activate him.

Christian Ponder active (3:02 p.m. ET): The Minnesota Vikings' official Twitter feed reports that QB Christian Ponder (knee, probable) is active. Ponder's matchup against the weak Redskins pass defense has him an intriguing bye-week fill-in/two-quarterback league option. We rank him 14th for the week, but he's got the upside to crack the top 10.

Jerome Simpson inactive (3:02 p.m. ET): The Minnesota Vikings' official Twitter feed reports that WR Jerome Simpson (back, questionable) is inactive. Simpson wasn't expected to play after missing practice time as well as much of Week 8. Keep him reserved if you're his owner in a deeper league.

Antoine Winfield active (3:02 p.m. ET): The Minnesota Vikings' official Twitter feed reports that CB Antoine Winfield (knee, probable) is active. Winfield is Jim McCormick's No. 21 defensive back for the week, but one wonders how much the Redskins will be throwing deep this week. Only use him in larger IDP formats.

Martellus Bennett active (2:58 p.m. ET): Pat Hanlon of the New York Giants reports that TE Martellus Bennett (knee, probable) is active for the New York Giants. He's playing through his injury, and with Hakeem Nicks back, Bennett might not be as integral to the Giants' passing game as in the season's early weeks. Still, he's a viable red-zone target, and as such, we rank him 13th at his position.

Hakeem Nicks active (2:58 p.m. ET): Pat Hanlon of the New York Giants reports that WR Hakeem Nicks (foot, questionable) is active for the New York Giants. Nicks' return comes in a challenging road matchup for the Giants. Couple that with his perhaps playing at less than full strength and our No. 21 ranking of him at wide receiver makes sense. That's still a WR2/3 or flex, and it's a starter in most leagues.

Antrel Rolle active (2:58 p.m. ET): Pat Hanlon of the New York Giants reports that S Antrel Rolle (knee, probable) is active for the New York Giants. Rolle is Jim McCormick's No. 17 defensive back for the week, making him a worthy option in larger IDP formats.

Marshawn Lynch active (2:43 p.m. ET): The Seattle Seahawks' official Twitter feed reports that RB Marshawn Lynch (back, probable) is active. He wasn't at any risk of sitting, and remains one of the most productive running backs in fantasy. Lynch is our No. 6 option for the week.

Jairus Byrd active (2:42 p.m. ET): The Buffalo Bills' official Twitter feed reports that S Jairus Byrd (chest, questionable) is active. Byrd is Jim McCormick's No. 12 defensive back for the week, making him a decent second-tier option in IDP formats.

Kyle Williams active (2:42 p.m. ET): The Buffalo Bills' official Twitter feed reports that DT Kyle Williams (ankle, questionable) is active. Williams is Jim McCormick's No. 21 defensive lineman for the week, meaning he only warrants consideration in deeper IDP leagues.

Mario Williams active (2:42 p.m. ET): The Buffalo Bills' official Twitter feed reports that DE Mario Williams (wrist, probable) is active. Williams is a no-brainer in IDP formats, earning Jim McCormick's No. 4 ranking for the week among defensive linemen.

Brandon Bolden active (2:39 p.m. ET): The New England Patriots' official Twitter feed reports that RB Brandon Bolden (knee, questionable) is active. He's healthy enough to serve as Steven Ridley's change-of-pace, and is our No. 29 running back accounting for a decent recent run in that role. This is a poor matchup for him, however.

Rob Gronkowski active (2:39 p.m. ET): The New England Patriots' official Twitter feed reports that TE Rob Gronkowski (hip, questionable) is active. See, this is what we're talking about. Bill Belichick's injury-list shenanigans are at it again; there was never really any worry that Gronkowski (among several other Patriots) was going to sit. Gronkowski is our No. 3 tight end for the week and he's well worth slotting into all lineups.

Aaron Hernandez active (2:39 p.m. ET): The New England Patriots' official Twitter feed reports that TE Aaron Hernandez (ankle, questionable) is active. Hernandez is the one Patriots "questionable"-tag player whose health is a legitimate concern. He's likely to be worked back in a limited snap count, though the Patriots might yet use him in enough impact situations to make him a decent option even in shallow leagues. We've ranked him 11th for the week, and would certainly have had him higher if we were sure he'd play the full 60.

Shane Vereen active (2:39 p.m. ET): The New England Patriots' official Twitter feed reports that RB Shane Vereen (foot, questionable) is active. Vereen continues to struggle with injuries, has a limited role in the Patriots' offense and the team is facing a tough Seahawks' D. Don't bother with him in fantasy this week.

Wes Welker active (2:39 p.m. ET): The New England Patriots' official Twitter feed reports that WR Wes Welker (ankle, questionable) is active. Welker's matchup is a challenging one, but Tom Brady is going to need him for some of those shorter routes over the middle this week. Expect a healthy volume of catches/yards, making him our No. 10 wideout for the week.

William Powell active (2:35 p.m. ET): The Arizona Cardinals' official Twitter feed reports that RB William Powell (head, probable) is active. Though it's unclear who will earn the start at running back, Powell might have an edge in terms of total touches this week, making him the slightly more attractive fantasy option if you must pick from this backfield. Still, we rank him our No. 27 running back for the week, and advise more of a wait-and-see approach.

John Skelton active (2:35 p.m. ET): The Arizona Cardinals' official Twitter feed reports that QB John Skelton (ankle, probable) is active. Skelton returns in a backup capacity this week, and after back-to-back respectable performances, Kevin Kolb should remain in there for what's a favorable matchup in larger leagues.

LaRod Stephens-Howling active (2:35 p.m. ET): The Arizona Cardinals' official Twitter feed reports that RB LaRod Stephens-Howling (hip, probable) is active. Stephens-Howling might factor largely into the Cardinals' backfield plans this week, though he's the one of the team's two options who has shown in the past that he's not much in the way of starters' material. We've ranked him 28th at the position; he's a desperation flex at best.

Miles Austin active (11:57 a.m. ET): The Dallas Cowboys' official Twitter feed reports that WR Miles Austin (hamstring, probable) is active. At times this season, the Ravens have surrendered some solid games to opposing wideouts (see: Week 3, Patriots). Austin is our No. 11 wideout for the week.

Reggie Bush active (11:55 a.m. ET): The Miami Dolphins' official Twitter feed reports that RB Reggie Bush (knee, probable) is active. The Rams' defensive weakness is against the run, not the pass, meaning Bush, despite his recent injury issues, should be the focal point of the Dolphins' offense this week. He's our No. 9 running back for the week; I'm even more optimistic about his prospects than that. Activate him.

Brian Hartline active (11:55 a.m. ET): The Miami Dolphins' official Twitter feed reports that WR Brian Hartline (quadriceps, probable) is active. Hartline is our No. 26 wideout for the week, mostly because he's going up against a Rams defense that's tougher to attack via the air.

Sam Bradford active (11:54 a.m. ET): The St. Louis Rams' official Twitter feed reports that QB Sam Bradford (knee, probable) is active. Though it's easier to attack the opposing Dolphins via the pass than run, Bradford hasn't shown much in the season's first quarter to warrant slotting in outside of two-quarterback leagues. He's our No. 20 option at the position.

David Harris active (11:52 a.m. ET): The New York Jets' official Twitter feed reports that LB David Harris (hamstring, probable) is active. Harris is Jim McCormick's No. 14 linebacker for the week, making him a useful No. 2 option in IDP formats.

Stephen Hill active (11:52 a.m. ET): The New York Jets' official Twitter feed reports that WR Stephen Hill (hamstring, probable) is active. Hill's return is one of the few pluses for the Jets' offense, though their team-wide issues put a cap on his (among others') fantasy potential. Expect Hill to see a few targets, but we rank him 44th accounting for the team's modest-at-best potential.

Dustin Keller active (11:52 a.m. ET): The New York Jets' official Twitter feed reports that TE Dustin Keller (hamstring, probable) is active. Keller returns after a several-week absence, but he'll need to regain his fantasy owners' trust before being a recommended start. We have him 22nd at the position, making him a desperation option only.

Jeremy Kerley active (11:52 a.m. ET): The New York Jets' official Twitter feed reports that WR Jeremy Kerley (illness, probable) is active. Kerley might be the Jets' most-targeted wideout this week, but we still rank him only 32nd at the position. Consider him a No. 4 /flex.

LaRon Landry active (11:52 a.m. ET): The New York Jets' official Twitter feed reports that S LaRon Landry (heel, probable) is active. Landry is Jim McCormick's No. 13 defensive back, mostly a result of strong statistical performance thus far as opponents regularly throw against the Jets.

Mark Sanchez active (11:52 a.m. ET): The New York Jets' official Twitter feed reports that QB Mark Sanchez (back, probable) is active. Sanchez is our No. 23 quarterback for the week, accounting for both poor performance as well as the prospect he might be on the verge of losing his job.

Mewelde Moore active (11:48 a.m. ET): Mike Chappell of the Indianapolis Colts reports that RB Mewelde Moore (ankle, probable) is active for the Indianapolis Colts. Moore will presumably occupy the third-down back role behind Week 6 starter Vick Ballard. It's Ballard whom we prefer among Colts running backs in fantasy; we have him 22nd. Moore, meanwhile, comes in at No. 43.

William Moore active (11:46 a.m. ET): The Atlanta Falcons' official Twitter feed reports that S William Moore (hip, probable) is active. Moore is off to a solid start in IDP leagues this season, earning Jim McCormick's No. 8 ranking among defensive backs accordingly. Get him into your lineups.

Darrius Heyward-Bey active (11:44 a.m. ET): The Oakland Raiders' official Twitter feed reports that WR Darrius Heyward-Bey (concussion, probable) is active. He has made a somewhat swift recovery considering how severe his injury appeared at first glance. Heyward-Bey should be involved in a road game that the Raiders might trail for most; it's why we rank him our No. 35 wideout for the week.

Sebastian Janikowski active (11:44 a.m. ET): The Oakland Raiders' official Twitter feed reports that K Sebastian Janikowski (left groin, probable) is active. Janikowski has been a disappointment in fantasy thus far, but he's got one of the stronger legs in football and this game is in a weather-controlled environment. He's our No. 10 kicker for the week.

Darren McFadden active (11:44 a.m. ET): The Oakland Raiders' official Twitter feed reports that RB Darren McFadden (shoulder, probable) is active. The Raiders didn't adjust their zone-blocking scheme during their bye week, so McFadden's fantasy prospects aren't much different today than they were in the season's opening weeks. He's our No. 11 running back for the week based primarily upon volume of touches.

Brandon Myers active (11:44 a.m. ET): The Oakland Raiders' official Twitter feed reports that TE Brandon Myers (shoulder, probable) is active. Myers is more of a "pinch-hit" kind of fantasy tight end, earning our No. 18 ranking at the position this week. He'll probably see a few targets in a game in which the Raiders might throw frequently.

Shaun Draughn active (11:41 a.m. ET): The Kansas City Chiefs' official Twitter feed reports that RB Shaun Draughn (ankle, probable) is active. With Peyton Hillis previously ruled out, Draughn should serve as the primary backup yet again to Jamaal Charles. That's "little-used" backup, to you.

Jon Baldwin active (11:40 a.m. ET): The Kansas City Chiefs' official Twitter feed reports that WR Jon Baldwin (hamstring, questionable) is active. Baldwin hasn't been much of a factor in fantasy, and he's unlikely to become one in a week with Brady Quinn as his quarterback. Regard Baldwin a mere desperation option in uber-deep leagues.

Kevin Smith inactive (11:38 a.m. ET): The Detroit Lions' official Twitter feed reports that Kevin Smith is inactive. Smith's fantasy value has fallen off a cliff since the eligible return of Mikel Leshoure. Smith can be safely dropped in all fantasy leagues, if you haven't already (and you should have).

Brandon Pettigrew active (11:38 a.m. ET): The Detroit Lions' official Twitter feed reports that TE Brandon Pettigrew (knee, probable) is active. Pettigrew is our No. 10 tight end for the week, making him a strong lower-end option in standard ESPN leagues.

Louis Delmas active (11:37 a.m. ET): The Detroit Lions' official Twitter feed reports that S Louis Delmas (knee, questionable) is active. After a four-week absence, Delmas returns to the Lions for his 2012 debut, a plus for their defense. However, Delmas isn't much of an IDP option, having ranked well outside the 25 best defensive backs in terms of 2011 fantasy points.

T.J. Ward active (11:35 a.m. ET): The Cleveland Browns' official Twitter feed reports that S T.J. Ward (hand, questionable) is active. Ward's status was one of the few true question marks in the 1 p.m. ET games, showing how locked-in most players' injury status was in this time block. He's active, so his owners in IDP leagues can breathe more easily. He's Jim McCormick's No. 7 defensive back for the week, making Ward a solid start in the format.

A.J. Green active (11:33 a.m. ET): The Cincinnati Bengals' official Twitter feed reports that WR A.J. Green (knee, probable) is active. There was never any doubt Green would play, the one knock against him in this matchup being that he'll go up against CB Joe Haden of the Browns, one of the better corners in the league. No matter: Green managed 151 yards and a score receiving in his two games against Haden and the Browns in 2011. It's why we rank Green our No. 3 wideout for the week.

Haloti Ngata active (11:31 a.m. ET): The Baltimore Ravens' official Twitter feed reports that DT Haloti Ngata (shoulder, probable) is active. Ngata is Jim McCormick's No. 24 defensive lineman for the week, making him more of a lower-end option in IDP formats.