Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

02 Jan 2018

Injury Aftermath: Week 17

by Andrew Potter

Titans at Chiefs

DeMarco Murray still has not practiced since injuring his MCL in Week 16, and is very unlikely to play against the Chiefs in the wild-card round of the playoffs. Cornerback Brice McCain has a hamstring injury, which is typically enough to keep a defensive back out for at least one game. Kalan Reed and Jonnu Smith are both in the concussion protocol, but are cleared for practice. That means their chances of being cleared to play before Saturday are relatively good.

The Chiefs were able to rest some key players in Week 17, but saw receiver De'Anthony Thomas break his leg -- meaning he will be placed on injured reserve. Backup halfback Akeem Hunt was also placed on injured reserve after injuring his ankle. The pair was replaced like-for-like by receiver Marcus Kemp and halfback C.J. Spiller. Otherwise, receiver Albert Wilson is battling a hamstring injury, cornerback Phillip Gaines an elbow injury, defensive tackle Jarvis Jenkins a knee injury, and fellow defensive lineman Rakeem Nunez-Roches an ankle injury. Of those, Wilson's sounds the most likely to result in missed time, with hamstring injuries particularly troublesome for receivers.

Falcons at Rams

Falcons guard Andy Levitre tore his triceps earlier in the year, attempted to play through it, and has now been placed on injured reserve. At this point in the year, injured reserve is season-ending. He should be fine for next season, but will be replaced by Ben Garland as a starter entering the playoffs. Receiver Taylor Gabriel injured his hamstring in Week 17, leaving him quite unlikely to play against the Rams. Defensive end Adrian Clayborn strained his calf, which also places his status in some doubt.

The Rams rested their starters against the 49ers in Week 17, and appear to have no new injuries to report.

Bills at Jaguars

LeSean McCoy sprained his ankle against the Dolphins and was carted off as the Bills secured their playoff spot in Miami. His availability is in considerable doubt as a result. His absence would leave Mike Tolbert as the only Bills halfback with any regular-season carries. Offensive tackle Jordan Mills also injured his ankle, but hopes to be available in Jacksonville.

For the Jaguars, safety Barry Church suffered a hamstring injury in the first half against Tennessee and did not return. It is not clear whether that was a precautionary decision, but hamstring injuries are particularly troublesome for defensive backs. Receivers Allen Hurns and Marqise Lee hope to play after missing time during the tail end of the regular season, but both are still working their way back from their respective injuries.

Panthers at Saints

Carolina missed safety Kurt Coleman and halfback Jonathan Stewart against the Falcons, but hope to have both back in New Orleans. Guard Trai Turner is in the concussion protocol, and has missed the last three games. No word is public on what stage of the protocol he has passed, but his chances of playing appear relatively slim.

Despite losing with their starters in Week 17, the Saints suffered no further injury to anything other than their pride in Tampa Bay. Guard Senio Kelemete, who has seen plentiful playing time during left tackle Terron Armstead's injury absences, left the game briefly but was able to return.

Bye Weeks

Eagles cornerback Sidney Jones left Sunday's game briefly due to cramps, but that will be of little concern to a player who was making his professional debut after tearing his Achilles during the pre-draft evaluation process. He is expected to be available for the playoffs.

The Patriots, Steelers, and Vikings have no new injuries to report, and with the bye week approaching are expected to be at or close to full health in two weeks' time.

Posted by: Andrew Potter on 02 Jan 2018

7 comments, Last at 05 Jan 2018, 1:34pm by jtr

Comments

1
by The Ninjalectual :: Wed, 01/03/2018 - 4:41am

This is secretly the most important regular feature at FO

2
by Andrew Potter :: Wed, 01/03/2018 - 5:05am

I hope it's useful! Unfortunately, this year's holiday timing -- Christmas Day AND New Year's Day -- mean it's been more rushed and consequently less detailed than I would like the past two weeks. We should be back to normal, with Zach's valuable analytical insight, next week.

3
by coboney :: Wed, 01/03/2018 - 8:50am

Definitely something I enjoy reading - and I think we all understand holidays filling up the schedule.

5
by drobviousso :: Wed, 01/03/2018 - 11:34am

I loathe reading it, but that has more to do with the subject matter than anything else.

Keep up the good work. I read this every week.

4
by billprudden :: Wed, 01/03/2018 - 8:52am

I agree - we don't comment much, and I'd hate for the staff to get the wrong idea - but this is a great weekly feature.

6
by poplar cove :: Thu, 01/04/2018 - 10:09am

count me in for liking this weekly segment as well

7
by jtr :: Fri, 01/05/2018 - 1:34pm

Not relevant to the playoff games this weekend, but this seems like the best place to put this news:

Pete Carroll says "Cliff [Avril] and Kam [Chancellor] are going to have a hard time playing football again" due to their neck injuries. Obviously it would be a huge blow to a fading Seahawks defense to lose two key players to career-ending injuries like that.