Injury Analysis: O-Line Problems for Zeke
Injury Analysis: O-Line Problems for Zeke

This article is part of our Injury Analysis series.

Travis Frederick, Zack Martin

Those aren't names that will appear on any fantasy draft board, but their overall health will have a huge impact on a top fantasy prospect. Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott is a top-five player with an average draft position of 3.2. While Elliott's individual talent is undeniable, part of what makes him so attractive is Dallas' stellar offensive line. However, both Frederick and Martin were added to the injury report in the last week, casting a bit of uncertainty about the heart of the line.

Frederick, Dallas' four-time Pro Bowl center, was the first to go down because of recurring pain in his neck and shoulder. The issue was significant enough that the Cowboys opted to send Frederick to Dr. Robert Watkins, a renowned orthopedist who specializes in spine-related injuries. Dr. Watkins linked Frederick's problem to "stingers," a nerve-related issue often caused by an overstretching of the brachial plexus.

The brachial plexus is the bundle of nerves between the neck and shoulder that extends down into the upper extremity. Fortunately, surgery is not being discussed and it is believed extended rest should allow the irritated nerves to calm down. Furthermore, Frederick might be able to modify his shoulder pads or add a "cowboy collar" to his padding to help better stabilize and protect the area of concern. Look for Frederick to be limited for the remainder of preseason with a Week 1 start the primary focus.

Martin, the team's Pro Bowl guard, suffered a more

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jeff Stotts
Jeff Stotts works as a Certified Athletic Trainer (MAT, ATC, PES, CES). He won the 2011 Best Fantasy Football Article in Print from the Fantasy Sports Trade Association.
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