This injury update covers the key player injuries from the previous week’s NFL action.
Giovani Bernard, CIN – Sprained AC Joint
According to reports Bengals’ RB Giovani Bernard, who was out briefly in the fourth quarter on Sunday because of a right shoulder injury, has been diagnosed with a minor acromioclavicular sprain. However team officials are optimistic about his chances of playing in Week 7. Bernard was hurt when he was driven into the turf by a Panthers’ defender at the end of a carry early in the fourth quarter. He appeared to be in a lot of pain as he left the field and he was taken to the locker room where he underwent an evaluation. X-rays on his collarbone were reportedly negative and after his shoulder was wrapped and secured he was allowed to return and finish the game. As expected Bernard’s shoulder was stiff and sore on Monday morning and he will likely miss practice time while he recovers. But it appears he avoided serious injury and he should be healthy enough to play in Week 7 against the Colts.
Theo Riddick, DET – Strained Hamstring
Lions’ RB Theo Riddick, who missed Week 5 because of a minor hamstring strain, aggravated the injury in the second half against the Vikings and he was unable to finish the game. Riddick originally pulled his hamstring back in Week 4 and there was optimism that the injury had healed. He spoke with reporters on Monday and he said that his leg was feeling fine and that expects to play in Week 7. Hopefully this doesn’t linger throughout the season. We should know more about his status for the team’s next game sometime tomorrow or Thursday.
Stevan Ridley, NE – Torn ACL and MCL
Patriots’ RB Stevan Ridley will miss the remainder of the season after an MRI on Monday morning revealed that he suffered tears to the anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments in his right knee. Ridley injured his knee when he was tackled low on a third-quarter carry against the Bills on Sunday. Reconstructive surgery will be needed, but it has yet to be scheduled because the medical staff is waiting for the swelling within the joint to go down. If all goes well with the surgery and his recovery he should be ready for football sometime next summer.
Darren Sproles, PHI – Sprained MCL
Eagles’ RB Darren Sproles, who left Sunday’s game against the Giants with an injured left knee, has been diagnosed with a minor medial collateral sprain and there is a chance that he will be able to play in team’s next game in Week 8. Sproles was injured when he was pushed back on his knee while trying to push the pile at the end of a carry. He immediately grabbed his left knee and appeared to be in some discomfort, but he was able to walk off the field on his own. Initial reports suggested that Sproles would be out 2 – 4 weeks, however head coach Chip Kelly has refused to rule him out for Week 8 and he has said that Sproles might be out for just “one to two weeks” instead. The Eagles have their bye this upcoming week so Sproles has an additional week to rest. We will keep you posted on his recovery.
Fozzy Whittaker, CAR – Strained Quadriceps
Panthers’ RB Fozzy Whittaker, who has missed several games this year because of a lingering quad strain, aggravated the injury on Sunday against the Bengals and he was unable to finish the game as a result. Whittaker started the game in Week 6 and scored a touchdown before hurting his leg. He seemed to be moving around without an issue in the locker room after the game and he told reporters that he expected to be OK. Since this is an aggravation expect the medical staff to treat it conservatively and don’t be surprised if he misses a lot of practice this week.
Knowshon Moreno, MIA – Torn ACL
Dolphins’ RB Knowshon Moreno suffered a torn ACL Sunday in the loss to the Packers. Moreno made what appeared to be a successful return to action in that game from his previous elbow injury, but only accumulated 10 yards on six carries. The Dolphins have placed him on Injured Reserve. His first season in Miami ends with 31 carries for 148 yards and one touchdown and he’ll enter free agency this off-season. Lamar Miller, who has been playing at a very high level over the last month, is now locked as Miami’s feature back the rest of the way.
Victor Cruz, NYG – Torn Patellar Tendon
Giants’ RB Victor Cruz underwent season-ending knee surgery on Monday after tearing the patellar tendon in his right knee against the Eagles on Sunday. Cruz suffered the injury while trying to make a touchdown catch in the third quarter and he had to be carted off the field. By all accounts the surgery went well, but team officials aren’t sure when Cruz will be able to start running or if he will be able to take part in the Giants’ off-season conditioning program. Typically football players are out for up to 6 months after patellar tendon surgery and don’t return to 100% for at least 12 months post-op. Wide receivers Odell Beckham and Rueben Randle will see an increase in targets for the Giants moving forward.
Eddie Royal, SD – Undisclosed Rib Injury
Chargers’ WR Eddie Royal left Sunday’s game against the Raiders after suffering an undisclosed rib injury but it appears he is going to be OK. Royal was hit hard while making a catch in the third quarter and according to reports he complained of sore ribs while on the sideline. He did not return to the game and he was seen with ice wrapped on his side in the locker room afterwards. The nature of the injury has not been made public, however there are reports that suggest the injury is minor. He’ll likely miss some practice time this week while he recovers but team officials believe that he will be healthy enough to play in Week 7.