If you’re a fantasy football player, you know how frustrating it can be to see one of your best players listed in the injury report. However, it was always comforting to see someone listed as “probable” instead of “questionable,” since players with that P next to their name almost always end up suiting up for action.
Now, though, the NFL is going to make it that much more difficult for fantasy players, as they have removed “probable” from the equation, citing the fact that it’s essentially a useless classification. Starting this season, teams must list players with injuries as either “questionable,” “doubtful,” or “out.” Pro Football Talk has more on why the league decided to nix the probable option.
“The ‘Probable’ category was eliminated from the Game Status Report because approximately 95 percent of the players who were listed as ‘Probable’ in prior years did in fact play in the game,” the league explained.
There was a reason for that high percentage of participation. Although many believed that “probable” suggested a 75-percent likelihood of playing, it actually meant that the player was virtually certain to be available for normal duty. After the Falcons scratched quarterback Mike Vick, who had been listed as probable with a knee injury, from a 2005 game against New England, the league reminded teams of the true meaning of “probable,” and it began routinely investigating situations in which a player listed as “probable” did not actually play.”
The issue here is that with players no longer being able to be listed as probable, teams would seem to be more likely to list everyone as questionable, even if there’s a decent chance they will play, which will cause fantasy football players to lose their minds every week when half of their starting lineup has (in theory) a 50/50 chance of playing.
The flip side of the argument is that teams may just stop listing so many players to the injury report if they only have minor injuries, so maybe it will work out.
Either way, we can all blame Bill Belichick for this, as he has listed Tom Brady as probable almost every game for a decade.
(Via Pro Football Talk)