Antonio Brown WR, Steelers: partial calf tear
Brown suffered a partially torn calf on Sunday that will sideline him for at least three weeks. The league has lost its best receiver and the Steelers will have to get by without their most explosive player. The good news is that Brown could be healthy enough to play during the postseason.
Early in the second quarter, Brown was targeted in the end zone. His lower left leg was hit in the air, then twisted as he fell to the ground. He immediately grabbed the back of his leg and couldn’t put much weight on it. Brown was then taken to the hospital as there was some concern over compartment syndrome. This is when pressure builds up in the muscle due to bleeding, and it can become serious very quickly.
Inside Injuries has calculated a grade 2 calf injury, indicating a partial tear. The Optimal Recovery Time is at least four weeks but can be as long as seven. Brown is a player who relies on his explosiveness, and if he returns before his calf is fully healed, he won’t be anywhere near 100 percent on the field. Knowing how competitive Brown is, he will likely be back during the playoffs. His calf is going to be a problem until he can take an extended amount of time off during the offseason. Calf injuries are troublesome, especially for wide receivers, and they have a tendency to linger. This isn’t the worst-case scenario, but it is a tough blow in a year full of crazy injuries.
Marqise Lee WR, Jaguars: right ankle sprain
A knee injury has bothered Marqise Lee over the last two months, but on Sunday it was his ankle. Lee was injured while blocking in the first quarter and was later ruled out for the game. X-rays were negative, but he underwent an MRI to look for any ligament damage. All scans showed fairly positive results, and the Jaguars are hopeful that he could return before the playoffs.
The injury looked like a possible high ankle sprain, which if true, should keep him out through the regular season. This comes with a 4-6 week Optimal Recovery Time, so if it is a high ankle sprain, Lee won’t be healthy this year. It doesn’t take much to re-aggravate this injury, and Inside Injuries will keep him at a High Injury Risk for the rest of 2017, even if he does play.
Davante Adams WR, Packers: concussion
For the second time this season, Davante Adams had to be helped off the field after a scary collision. Adams suffered a concussion in Week 4 but cleared concussion protocol in time to play the following week. There was also concern about a potential neck injury, but an MRI came back clean. Now he is in concussion protocol for the third time in two years, and this one could even end his season.
Adams was the recipient of a brutal and illegal peel-back block by Thomas Davis following an interception. Our algorithm already had Adams as an Elevated Injury Risk, mainly due to his concerning concussion history, and now he is High Risk.
Emmanuel Sanders WR, Broncos: ankle bone bruise
Emmanuel Sanders’ ankle troubles started back in Week 6 and resurfaced Thursday night. Sanders had to be carted off and missed the following two games. He continued to miss practice reps and didn’t ever quite look healthy. Then, on Thursday, Sanders suffered a bone bruise to his right ankle. He has nine days to recover, but with little left to play for it is best to shut him down for the final two games. This injury comes with a 2-4 week Optimal Recovery Time.
Ankle injuries are tough on wide receivers and are easily aggravated. Our algorithm kept him in the High Injury Risk Category even before his latest re-injury. He shouldn’t try to play through this in Week 16.
Rex Burkhead RB, Patriots: knee sprain
A knee injury forced Rex Burkhead out of the game on Sunday, but the Patriots do not believe it is too serious. An ACL tear sounds unlikely, but based on the mechanism of the injury an MCL sprain or meniscus tear are possible. These injuries wouldn’t necessarily end his season, but they could sideline him until the playoffs.
Devin Funchess WR, Panthers: shoulder injury
A shoulder injury had Devin Funchess listed as questionable entering Week 15, but he was active. Funchess had just one reception for 19 yards and was clearly bothered by the injury. Entering the game, he had a Below Average HPF (Health Performance Factor), so our algorithm indicated that his shoulder injury would prevent him from playing well. Funchess needs at least two weeks to get healthy, but as the Panthers fight for a playoff spot, they will want him out there.
Jeremy Maclin WR, Ravens: knee injury
Maclin, who has been plagued by injuries this season, was unable to finish the game on Sunday due to a knee injury. Maclin missed two games with a shoulder injury that lingered and then was limited by a back injury last week. He tried to play through this knee injury but his day ended in the third quarter.
Maclin has been a huge disappointment since joining the Ravens, and now he could be forced to miss Week 16. With a 2-4 week Optimal Recovery Time for this knee injury, Maclin’s season could be over. If the Ravens are concerned that there could be ligament or cartilage damage, they will send him for an MRI.
Trevor Siemian QB, Broncos: left shoulder subluxation
Trevor Siemian’s season will end on injured reserve. Siemian subluxed his non-throwing shoulder on Thursday night when he landed hard on his left side. This means that it partially dislocated but popped back in place on its own. Sometimes this causes ligament or cartilage damage in the shoulder that requires surgery, but for now, he will try to just rest and rehab.
Siemian previously underwent surgery on the same shoulder at the end of last season and re-injured it in Week 6. The surgery was more extensive than they initially believed it would and involved torn ligaments in the areas where the clavicle, scapula and AC joint connect. Still, Siemian was able to win the Broncos’ starting job.
Kerwynn Williams RB, Cardinals: quad injury
Kerwynn Williams suffered a quad injury on Sunday, which explains why we didn’t see much of him in the second half. Even if it was a mild strain or a contusion, it can be a painful injury. We just saw Leonard Fournette miss Week 15 with a quad injury, and it’s possible Williams is forced to miss a game or two as well. The Optimal Recovery Time is at least two weeks. With a Below Average HPF, Williams’ performance would suffer if he tries to play through the injury.
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