Stock Watch: T.O., Maroney gaining popularity 

December, 1, 2009
Unfortunately, we could turn this weekly Stock Watch into Concussion Watch, because head injuries are playing a large role in football and thus fantasy football. Until recently, it was just a pair of NFC East running backs -- Brian Westbrook of the Philadelphia Eagles was joined on the sidelines by Clinton Portis of the Washington Redskins -- that owners were watching closely. It was pretty obvious those players would miss games, and fantasy owners had ample time to prepare for their absences.

Jonathan Daniel/Getty ImagesKurt Warner
However, the same can't be said about a pair of top-10 quarterbacks, as Ben Roethlisberger and Kurt Warner practiced leading up to Sunday, and their fantasy owners didn't figure to be scrambling at the last minute. Instead, Roethlisberger's situation became more questionable Friday, during a holiday weekend, and he was announced as out Saturday. It was noteworthy that even Roethlisberger's Pittsburgh Steelers teammates questioned his absence. As for Warner, a full participant in the Arizona Cardinals' practices, he woke up Sunday morning feeling sick and was a surprise inactive for his afternoon game.

Let's just say fantasy owners were caught off guard -- Warner was the seventh most active quarterback in ESPN standard leagues, at 59.8 percent. He was active in more leagues than Brett Favre and Matt Schaub. Roethlisberger was still active in 24.2 percent of leagues. Both players remain in the top 10 among quarterbacks for fantasy scoring this season. But always have a backup quarterback on hand, just in case!