DeMarco Murray will have an MRI to evaluate his left foot sprain today. Television replays didn’t reveal anything specific about the injury. In fact, my eyes were drawn to his right foot, which seemed to get jammed up against the heel of a blocker, on the play in which Murray originally left the field. That shows the difficulty in using the TV screen as a diagnostic aid. There didn’t appear to be anything obvious on the screen with his left foot, nor was there a clear aggravation of the injury on the third quarter play.
There are some reassuring facts as we wait for the MRI result. Though it was odd that he was pulled out immediately after the third quarter run and never returned, it would be unusual for Murray to get himself into the huddle without the knowledge of the training staff, especially on the first play after a commercial timeout. Had there been a high concern for a serious foot sprain, it’s unlikely he’d have returned to the field in pads after halftime. And there were reports that Murray left the locker room without any immobilization. So, it’s fair to wonder how concerned we should really be with this injury. It’s not a foregone conclusion that the Cowboys are trying to rule out a Lisfranc injury, especially since they chose not to immobilize him after the game.
Of course, that’s all observer speculation. We’ll know more after the MRI.
Ray Lewis reportedly has a torn triceps muscle. According to Jay Glazer last night, the tear may not be complete, but severe enough to require surgery. If the tear does not involve the muscle tendon, it’s possible that Lewis could choose not to have surgery and try to return in 4-6 weeks. If the tendon is involved or surgery is recommended for a near-complete muscle tear, rehabilitation is likely to take 4-6 months. The Baltimore defense may be without its four best players next week, with Lardarius Webb reportedly out for the year with a torn ACL and Haloti Ngata possibly out for multiple weeks with an MCL sprain. Terrell Suggs has been out and working to return from an Achilles tear.
Trent Richardson is also on the imaging list for today. Adam Schefter reported last night that Richardson will have an MRI to evaluate a rib injury. The Cleveland Plain Dealer is also reporting a “rib-area injury” that apparently occurred during the first series. There haven’t been any reports about in-game or post-game x-rays showing a fracture and the MRI reports suggest that the concern is a soft tissue injury of some sort. I think it’s unlikely the rib area / flank issue is a kidney injury given that the team is waiting until today to do imaging. More than likely, we’ll hear that Richardson has a rib contusion or rib cartilage injury. There’s a wide range of severity with those injuries. Depending on degree and location, Richardson could miss no time or more than two weeks.
Brandon Lloyd landed hard late in the game with an injury to his side with what’s been reported as a possible shoulder or hip problem. The Patriots didn’t release any information and Lloyd wasn’t talking after the game. It’s possible that Bill Belichick will give reporters more information today, but don’t count on it. For now, the consensus opinion is that the injury isn’t serious.
Aaron Hernandez and Adrian Peterson looked limited physically at times yesterday but both played a good number of snaps and remained effective throughout the game. Both moved better than I expected them to move and neither appeared to suffer any significant tweaks during the game. I expect both to be less than 100% for the next 1-2 weeks, but both – and Hernandez in particular – should be able to take a full complement of snaps.
Hakeem Nicks played through his foot and knee injuries yesterday, but didn’t look nearly as comfortable as Hernandez and Peterson. He took 80% of the Giants’ total offensive snaps, but struggled to separate and had little explosion off the line. There appeared to be no setbacks during the game and Nicks will hopefully have only the expected post-game soreness and no increase in the knee swelling that’s limited him over the past three weeks.
Jahvid Best completed another round of testing to evaluate his readiness to return to full contact last week. Jim Schwartz would not comment on the results during last Friday’s press conference. Schwartz likely wanted to focus on this week’s game and not the status of a player who might return to practice the following week, but it’s fair to wonder if his silence is a sign of pessimism. It’s still not clear exactly what Best’s team of doctors are evaluating, but Best’s comments that he felt like he was taking the SAT exam is telling. That suggests that at least one concern is neurocognitive and that, while he has not had any recurrence of symptoms at rest or with exercise in some time, he has yet to return to his baseline on the IMPACT and related tests. Given the number of opinions he’s had, I’m also wondering if he’s been undergoing more specific brain imaging tests to evaluate blood flow or biochemical changes to assess for changes that might not be causing symptoms but suggest that he’s not fully recovered. Team observers are expecting to hear more today.
Categories: News and Notes