Injury Aftermath: Week 2
by Andrew Potter and Zach Binney
Thanks to staff writer Zach Binney's analysis of NFL injury data, we are able to provide detailed injury return (number of games missed) and recovery (number of weeks limited in practices or games) estimates based on historical data for select injuries. These estimates also consider the position of the injured player. Details of our methodology are available here.
Jaguars Left Tackle Cam Robinson -- Knee (IR)
Ian Rapoport reports that Cam Robinson suffered a torn ACL against the Patriots and will miss the rest of the season. A 2017 second-round pick, Robinson started 15 games at left tackle in his rookie season and immediately became one of the better run-blocking offensive tackles in the game. He looks set to anchor the Jaguars line for the next decade. Alas, that will not be the case for the rest of 2018.
Giants Center Jon Halapio -- Leg (IR)
Giants center Jon Halapio fractured his fibula and his ankle against the Cowboys, and he will miss the rest of the season. Halapio's leg was caught under a pile of players as he blocked on a Wayne Gallman rushing attempt, and he was removed on a cart with his leg in an air cast. Halapio was replaced by veteran John Greco, who will probably be the Giants' starting center for the foreseeable future.
Cornerback Eli Apple injured his groin in the defeat, and will have an MRI scan on the injury today. About half of groin injuries to defensive backs cause them to miss time, with around a quarter causing an absence of more than two weeks. Typical recovery times are one to four weeks.
Eagles Receiver Mike Wallace -- Ankle (IR)
Eagles receiver Mike Wallace suffered a lower leg fracture, according to head coach Doug Pederson. Wallace is having tests today to determine the severity and likely duration of the injury, but the team is expected to be without the receiver for quite some time. With fellow starter Alshon Jeffery still absent due to a shoulder injury, and Mack Hollins on injured reserve due to a groin injury, the Eagles are down to Nelson Agholor and a collection of spare change at the wide receiver position. They are expected to bring in at least one additional receiver this week.
Left tackle Jason Peters left Sunday's game with a quad strain, but does not expect to miss much time. Only about a quarter of quad injuries to offensive linemen cause them to miss any games, and typical recovery times are one to three weeks. Backup Halapoulivaati Vaitai, who started in Peters' absence last season, is expected to deputize if Peters does miss time.
Bengals Halfback Joe Mixon -- Knee
Following Thursday night's divisional win over the Baltimore Ravens, Joe Mixon had surgery to clean up some debris in his knee from an old injury. This will keep him out for a few weeks, during which Giovani Bernard is expected to start for the Bengals. Mixon is expected to return by midseason.
Rams Kicker Greg Zuerlein -- Groin
One of the top scoring kickers in the league, Greg Zuerlein injured his groin during warmups and did not participate in the Rams' victory over the Arizona Cardinals. Punter Johnny Hekker handled some of Zuerlein's duties against the Cardinals, but the Rams are expected to once again add former Penn State kicker Sam Ficken to their roster as a temporary stand-in. Zuerlein will not be placed on injured reserve, which suggests that the injury is not severe. That said, groin injuries can be tricky for kickers. Approximately half cause players to miss multiple games, with nearly a third keeping players out for four or more weeks. Typical recovery times are two to eight weeks.
Bills Halfback LeSean McCoy -- Ribs
LeSean McCoy suffered a rib injury against the Chargers when a teammate landed on top of him in a pile. Though initially reported as fractured ribs, more recent information suggests that the injury is less severe and McCoy will attempt to play through the pain. McCoy has a decent shot at playing next week as only about a quarter of rib injuries to running backs cause them to miss a game. However, his snap count and effectiveness are likely to be reduced while he deals with the injury. Typical recovery times are one to three weeks.
Cornerback Phillip Gaines, who started in Week 1 in place of the injured Vontae Davis and who will probably be first in line following Davis' abrupt retirement in Week 2, injured his elbow and did not return to the game. No update is yet available on the severity of that injury, but only about 15 percent of elbow injuries to defensive backs cause them to miss a game. Typical recovery times are one to three weeks.
Backup halfback and special teamer Taiwan Jones suffered a nasty-looking head injury after losing his helmet on a botched punt return. His helmet came off moments before he was tackled by an opposing player, and he suffered cuts and bruises to his face. He was evaluated for a head injury and removed from the game; no further update is yet available.
The following players left their respective games with concussion symptoms, and enter the league protocol:
- Broncos offensive tackle Jared Veldheer
- Lions cornerback Darius Slay
- Panthers safety Da'Norris Searcy
- Patriots defensive lineman Trey Flowers
- Patriots safety Patrick Chung
Slay's injury is noteworthy as he was tested for concussion symptoms on Monday night but cleared to return to the game, then was removed from this Sunday's game with concussion symptoms.
Browns/ex-Browns receiver Josh Gordon injured his hamstring late last week; reportedly a non-football injury which could impact ongoing trade talks, particularly if the player were unable to pass a physical. Gordon is seeing a specialist to assess the injury's severity. Kicker Zane Gonzalez, who had a nightmare game for the ages this past weekend, has been playing through a groin injury and will have an MRI scan on that injury today. Regardless of the severity of the injury, he is likely to be waived as injured or released with an injury settlement following a string of high-profile misses to begin this season.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Gonzalez has in fact been waived, per ESPN's Adam Schefter.)
Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald injured his hamstring against the Rams and was removed from the blowout loss. The Cardinals do not consider the injury to be major, but hamstring injuries are notoriously troublesome for wide receivers. His outlook is dependent on the severity of the strain, but about half of hamstring injuries to wide receivers cause them to miss at least one game. Approximately 20 percent cause long-term absences of four or more weeks. Typical recovery times are one to five weeks.
Chargers fullback Derek Watt injured his thumb against the Bills and did not return. No update is yet public on the severity of the injury. Watt's specific outlook depends on the type of injury, but about one-quarter of thumb injuries cause players to miss at least one game. Typical recovery times are one to four weeks.
Falcons guard Andy Levitre aggravated his existing elbow injury against the Panthers and did not return to the game. While only about a quarter of elbow injuries to offensive linemen cause them to miss games, this is a re-aggravation, so Levitre may be more at risk. Typical recovery times are one to two weeks. UPDATE: Levitre has been placed on injured reserve. Former starter Wes Schweitzer replaced Levitre in the lineup against Carolina, and is expected to continue in that role. Defensive end Derrick Shelby suffered a groin strain and also did not return. Approximately 45 percent of groin injuries to defensive linemen cause them to miss at least one game, while about a quarter cause them to miss at least three weeks. Typical recovery times are one to four weeks.
Packers cornerback Kevin King injured his groin against the Vikings and did not return to the game. He was replaced by veteran Davon House. As noted above, about half of groin injuries to defensive backs cause them to miss time, with around a quarter causing an absence of more than two weeks. Typical recovery times are one to four weeks.
Panthers cornerback Donte Jackson pulled his hamstring against the Falcons and left the game, but expects to be available for Week 3. Almost two-thirds of hamstring injuries to defensive backs cause them to miss at least one game, but hopefully Jackson is right and he belongs to the lucky minority. Typical recovery times are one to four weeks.
Ravens linebacker C.J. Mosley suffered a bone bruise in his knee on the opening drive of Thursday night's loss to the Bengals, though MRI scans revealed no further damage to the knee. The Ravens have ten days between games, so it is not yet clear whether Mosley will be available for Week 3's home game against the Denver Broncos.
Redskins halfback Rob Kelley injured his toe against the Colts and left the game. No update is yet available. About 30 percent of toe injuries to running backs cause them to miss at least one game, while approximately 10 percent cause extended absences of four or more weeks. Typical recovery times are one to three weeks.
Titans backup halfback and special teamer David Fluellen injured his groin against the Texans and left the game. Approximately half of groin injuries cause players to miss at least one week, with typical recovery times of one to four weeks.
Vikings halfback Dalvin Cook left Sunday's game to be treated for a hamstring injury, and did not return. Fortunately, it appears that Cook was having trouble with cramps rather than a more significant muscle injury. He is expected to be available as usual for Week 3. Cornerback Marcus Sherels suffered a chest injury, while offensive tackle Rashod Hill injured his ankle. Only about one-quarter of chest injuries to defensive backs cause them to miss any games, so hopefully Sherels will play next week; typical recovery times are one to three weeks. Approximately 40 percent of ankle injuries to offensive linemen result in at least one missed game, with around 20 percent causing long-term absences of four or more weeks. Typical recovery times are one to four weeks.