Just like every other week, we have all been hit hard by injuries. If you were fortunate enough to escape them before, you are most certainly reeling now.
I'm sure that you all have read about the injuries and replacements from other major fantasy football sites, but lets break it down a little bit more. GHL will do some research for you. Here's a list of your top pick-ups for Week 8.
Bernard Scott, Cincinnati Bengals
Not an injury to start with, but a suspension. Cedric Benson will serve his one-gamer. Scott could be the best of the backups here and is among the least owned, currently just 4% in ESPN leagues. Seattle is giving up 105 per game, which isn't too shabby considering that they are always playing from behind.
Scott has averaged roughly 4 yards per carry in his career. He only has 700 yards and two scores since starting his career in 2009, but he does have upside this week if you are in a pinch.
Alfonso Smith, Arizona Cardinals (0.1% owned)
Beanie Wells with a knee injury that will likely cost him a game or two. Really, it was just a matter of time. Arizona has been able to run the ball well this year, making his backup a pretty interesting grab. Alfonso Smith will be in front of Larod Stephens-Howling in the depth chart when the Cardinals go up against the Ravens.
Ravens are definitely a tough team to run on, and LSH had a great reception after Wells went down, so Smith, again is definitely on an "only if you desperately need him" status.
Roy Helu, Washington Redskins (15.3% owned)
We all know that Hightower is gone for the year, making the Mike Shanahan-induced running back roller coaster a bit more bearable. It is easy to imagine that most of the work will go to Ryan Torain, but if we can learn anything from the Redskins' past, we know that Helu has a chance for a couple big games this season.
So far this year, Helu is averaging nearly 5 yards per carry, the same as Torain. Making it even more interesting knowing that one of these guys is going to have a big statistical week every time the Skins touch the field. I like him as a pickup. Washington is a running team, and while he is still a risk, he has a great deal of upside.
Lance Ball, Denver Broncos (0.1% owned)
Willis McGahee suffered an injury as well this weekend. And Moreno will be getting the start. But, lets not forget that Moreno is pretty terrible. It is not too big a stretch to imagine that backup Lance Ball will get some work as well, and perhaps even take over most of the carries, much like McGahee did at the beginning of the year.
Ball has done very little in his career, but hasn't had much time to show what he can do. Definitely a reach here. I really just wanted to put him here to impress some people with my depth of knowledge of the Broncos rush offense. You like it, I know.
I'm going to avoid Leon Washington here. Marshawn Lynch has not been able to get the job done this year due to the lack of passing game and the terrible blocking on the Seahawks front. Chances of a breakout here are slim to none.
Also saying no to Kregg Lumpkin of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Earnest Graham was having a great run with Blount out of the picture, but don't expect the same from Lumpkin. Bucs have a bye this week, and Blount could very well be returning by the time they hit the field again.
Michael Bush is a great play with McFadden's injury. His backup Taiwan Jones is a hell of a stretch as well. He has had little to no work so far. He will likely see a handful of carries as long as McFadden is missing, but Bush should be the star for the time being.
If you have not put a claim in for Jabar Gaffney, then now is the time to do so. I expect Fred Davis to be the big winner in Santana Moss's injury, but Gaffney has been playing well this season and his targets should be going way up as the number one receiver.
Second wide receiver pickup would be Michael Jenkins of the Minnesota Vikings. Percy Harvin reinjured his ribs and has not been putting up the numbers we have been expecting. Jenkins is coming off a great week and Ponder is performing very well.