Monday Injury Debriefing

The Buffalo medical and training staff clearly feared that C.J. Spiller broke his collarbone yesterday. The mechanism was worrisome and the way they immobilized Spiller’s arm and shoulder further showed their concerns. Fortunately for Spiller, x-rays did not show a fracture and the preliminary diagnosis is a sprained AC joint.

More on AC joint sprains and other shoulder injuries in this post.

Chan Gailey said last night that he expects Spiller to miss a week or more, which strongly suggests a Grade 2 sprain. If that’s the case, Spiller could miss anywhere from 1-4 weeks. There’s also a small chance that Spiller’s MRI today will show a small fracture of the collarbone near the AC joint, which would lengthen his recovery time. We’ll know more later today.

Meanwhile, Fred Jackson continues to progress rapidly in his recovery from his LCL sprain. Though I’m always leery of players professing to be far ahead in their rehabilitation schedules, this one feels different. Barring a setback, there seems to be little doubt that Jackson will return nearer the optimistic 3-4 week estimate than the more conservative 6-8+ week estimate I had been worried about earlier. That’s a very good sign for this type of injury, as it suggests that Jackson does not have any significant instability in his knee.


There are reports this morning that Reggie Bush will miss multiple weeks with a left knee injury. It’s difficult to see specifics on the television replays, but it looks like Bush was either hit on the side or front of the knee. Bush has sprained the PCL and MCL and tore meniscus in that knee in the past. Each of those diagnoses are on the table again, but the tone of the post-game comments – the injury is not season-ending, no apparent concern that he’ll need surgery – suggest a mid-grade MCL sprain. If that’s the case, expect to hear an estimate of 2-4 weeks, with the long end of the timetable a reasonable bet. [Edit: Adam Schefter is reporting that today’s MRI showed no structural damage. Bush could return in Week 4.]

Both Ryan Mathews and Jamaal Charles looked fully healthy yesterday. As expected, Mathews was limited more by game situation than his injury. On the other hand, the Chiefs had no qualms leaning on Charles heavily. After early week comments suggesting that they’d be smart to manage Charles’ workload, Romeo Crennel felt good enough about Charles’ full week of practice to give him 39 touches. That’s a far, far cry from the 15 touches I thought might be his ceiling on the road in New Orleans. There was no indication that Charles was any the worse for wear during or after his busy day.

Steven Jackson didn’t appear as healthy as Mathews and Charles and wasn’t as effective. He also left the game to have his groin iced at one point. Expect his practice time to be severely limited again this week. The road doesn’t get any easier against the front sevens of Seattle and Arizona in the next two weeks.

Matthew Stafford had reportedly been dealing with a nagging muscle strain in his right hamstring during practice last week before aggravating it yesterday. That’s generally a bad prognostic sign, as an aggravated muscle strain is often of a higher grade than the initial injury. Stafford is usually a pocket passer and won’t be limited with a hamstring strain in the same way a skill position player or most defensive players would be, but a mid-grade hamstring strain may still cost him a week or more. Stafford is scheduled for an MRI today. It’s unlikely that we’ll get much specific information from Jim Schwartz.

While there’s no guarantee that Tom Curran’s report that Aaron Hernandez has a mid-grade high ankle sprain is accurate, it makes more sense to me than the NFLN report that the injury was a low ankle sprain. Despite the lack of clarity on the diagnosis itself, I think the reports on Hernandez’s timetable (4-6 weeks) are reasonable. I still lean toward the latter end of that estimate.

The Jets are holding out hope that the non-contact injury suffered by Darrelle Revis yesterday is not a torn ACL, but reports indicate that to be the most likely diagnosis. He’ll have an MRI today. [Edit: Rex Ryan confirmed that Revis tore his ACL and will have surgery in 2-3 weeks.]

There has yet to be a reassuring report on Austin Collie, whose reaction to his knee injury yesterday was very difficult to watch. It’s feared that he tore his ACL and will be lost for the season.

Though he wasn’t an every-down player, Kenny Britt looked very good until rolling his ankle late in yesterday’s game. There was no indication after the game that the ankle sprain is significant. The Titans were already likely to limit his practice repetitions early in the week, so wait until Friday’s participation report before jumping to any conclusions on the severity of the ankle sprain.

Jared Cook suffered an AC sprain yesterday and was unable to return to play. He was reportedly in a sling after the game, but Mike Munchak said he should be able to play next week. If the sprain is low grade, pain control and range of motion will determine Cook’s readiness for Week 4.

We may hear more on Ahmad Bradshaw today, but I still think he most likely was still experiencing some weakness after a stinger injury in Week 2. If that’s the case, his timetable for return may remain vague. It’s possible that he could return for Week 4, but other running backs in his situation have needed as long as a month to recover. With Andre Brown running effectively, the Giants aren’t likely to rush Bradshaw back quickly. If he is back this week, expect him to be a rotational option only.


Willis McGahee left yesterday’s game with a rib injury. The Broncos did not release specific details; his availability for Week 4 will depend on the nature and location of the injury. Darrius Heyward-Bey was kept overnight for observation after a scary head and neck injury. He appeared to have lost consciousness briefly after the hit and will have trouble getting clearance to play this week. Dexter McCluster hyperextended his elbow yesterday. While the elbow didn’t appear dislocated, subluxation injuries can cause ligament and soft tissue damage that could keep him out at least a week. Adrian Clayborn was in a knee immobilizer after the game and comments from his teammates in the locker room strongly suggested a season-ending injury. Chris Wells reportedly has a turf toe injury. It’s unlikely to be related to his knee troubles, but will be a tough injury to recover from quickly. Peyton Hillis left the game with an ankle injury and didn’t return.

Categories: News and Notes

1 reply

  1. No results on the Collie MRI, but Indy has signed WR Nathan Palmer from 49ers practice squad. Not a good sign.

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