NFL fantasy football: Giants hurting heading to Week 6

Giants shorthanded at practice: The New York Giants won’t have a few key pieces at practice Wednesday, heading into the team’s Week 6 showdown with the San Francisco 49ers. Wide receiver Hakeem Nicks (foot) and tight end Martellus Bennett (knee) are expected to miss practice, while running back Andre Brown (concussion) has yet to be cleared. Brown’s injury could be mitigated by talk that the Giants are “excited” about David Wilson this week. That could mean fewer carries for Ahmad Bradshaw, although there’s no such thing as a running back for you to be excited about against the 49ers’ defense.

Smith injury worrisome: Across the way, 49ers quarterback Alex Smith is suffering from a finger injury that coach Jim Harbaugh referred to as a “concern.” For the Niners’ run-first offense, an injury to Smith can be worked around. But for fantasy owners who might have missed out on Smith’s big Week 5 and expect more solid production against the Giants (who have been middle-of-the-road against fantasy quarterbacks), this creates a quandary. Smith’s still a decent start this week against Big Blue, but if the finger isn’t completely healed, those numbers could be dampened.

Brown out 2-3 weeks: Indianapolis Colts running back Donald Brown is expected to miss the next two to three weeks after recent knee surgery. That’s disappointing for a guy who has quietly been a decent fantasy performer, scoring double-digit fantasy points in three of his four games this season. It’s even more disappointing when you factor in this week’s game against the New York Jets, who have given up the fifth-most fantasy points per game to opposing running backs. In his place, Vick Ballard will start for the Colts. Ballard is worth a pick up and perhaps a flex start if you’re in a league with 12 or more teams.

— Marcas Grant

Follow Marcas on Twitter @MarcasG

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