This injury update covers the key fantasy players injured during week three of the preseason.
Sam Bradford, STL – Torn ACL
Rams’ QB Sam Bradford will miss the entire 2014-15 season after re-tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. Bradford, who tore the ACL in his left knee last season and is about 10 months removed from reconstructive knee surgery, was hurt during Saturday’s preseason game. After some initial anxiety, team officials appeared to be optimistic about Bradford’s status. Preliminary tests on his leg were inconclusive, but an MRI revealed that his surgically repaired ACL had re-torn. Bradford will have to undergo another procedure to repair the damage and the team’s medical believes that if all goes well with his recovery he should be ready to take part in OTAs next year. Shaun Hill will now take over as the Rams’ starting QB.
Cam Newton, CAR – Hairline Rib Fracture
Panthers’ QB Cam Newton, who was hurt in the team’s last preseason game, has been diagnosed with a small hairline rib fracture in his back/side area and his status for the remainder of the preseason is in question. Newton briefly left last Friday’s game after being hit, but he was able to return and finish the drive. His back and side were reportedly sore after the game and tests the following day revealed a small hairline fracture in one of his ribs. Although the injury is not considered serious team officials have indicated that they won’t know his status for Week 1 until sometime next week when he’s had some time to heal. These kinds of injuries generally come down to pain management and tolerance, so if Newton can handle the discomfort he should be able to play when the regular season begins. Don’t expect him practice this week or play in the team’s pre-season finale. We’ll keep you posted on his recovery.
Matt Schaub, OAK – Elbow Tendinitis
Raiders’ QB Matt Schaub has apparently been dealing with tendinitis in his throwing elbow and he will likely be limited for the remainder of the preseason as a result. Schaub has dealt with arm strength issues all month and his performance during the preseason has been poor. It isn’t clear when the inflammation in Schaub’s elbow began or if it is the reason he has struggled with his form. But he won’t have the chance to work out the kinks before the regular season because he is scheduled to spend a large portion of the next two weeks recovering from his injury. Head coach Dennis Allen recently told reporters that he isn’t concerned about Schaub’s elbow and that he will start in Week 1. However if he is on your fantasy roster, it’s probably a good idea to keep him on the bench.
Steven Jackson, ATL – Strained Hamstring
Falcons’ veteran RB Steven Jackson, who suffered a left hamstring strain on July 28, finally made his return to the practice field on Monday and team officials expect him to be at full speed when the regular season begins. Head coach Mike Smith has insisted all along that Jackson was being limited as a precaution and that he was on pace to be ready for Week 1. His return to practice this week indicates that Jackson’s hamstring is indeed close to full strength and baring any setbacks he will the Falcons’ starting running back when they face the Saints in 2 weeks.
LeSean McCoy, PHI – Undisclosed Thumb Injury / Turf Toe
Eagles’ RB LeSean McCoy appears to be OK after leaving last Thursday’s preseason game with an undisclosed thumb injury. McCoy appeared to hurt his right thumb on a carry in the first quarter and he was taken to the locker room where he was examined and X-rayed. X-rays were negative and according to reports the injury is not believed to be serious. He has since returned to practice and McCoy has told reporters that he will be ready when the regular season begins. McCoy has also been dealing with a turf toe problem that he insists isn’t serious. He seems to be OK now, but the turf toe is definitely something to keep an eye on especially if he starts to miss practices heading into the regular season because of it.
Bernard Pierce, BAL – Mild Concussion
Ravens’ projected Week 1 starting RB Bernard Pierce left last Saturday’s preseason game after being hit in the head by Redskins safety Brandon Meriweather and he has officially been diagnosed with a concussion. According to reports Pierce experienced dizziness after the hit and he complained of a minor headache after the game, but he has already started to show signs of improvement and team officials don’t believe the concussion will keep him sidelined for very long. He’ll likely be limited as a precaution for the remainder of the preseason, however it looks like he will fine when the regular season begins.
Kenny Stills, NO – Strained Quadriceps
Saints’ WR Kenny Stills, who has missed two pre-season games and been limited in practices because of a strained quadriceps, aggravated the injury in the team’s exhibition game against the Colts on Saturday night and his status for Week 1 now appears to be in question. Stills was hurt early in training camp and he was held out of practice for several weeks while he recovered. He returned to practice a little over a week ago and he was cleared to play against the Colts. Unfortunately he reinjured his leg while attempting to catch a deep pass in the first quarter. Don’t expect him to practice much over the next two weeks as the medical staff will do what they can to get him ready for the start of the regular season.
Wes Welker, DEN – Concussion
Broncos’ WR Wes Welker was knocked out of Saturday’s preseason game after suffering another concussion and his status for the remainder of the preseason and availability for the start of the regular season are now in doubt. Welker was hit in the head when he was tackled following a catch over the middle in the second quarter. He got up on his own, but he was quickly escorted to the locker room where he was evaluated. Head coach John Fox confirmed the next day that Welker had been diagnosed with a concussion making it the third time he has been concussed in 10 months. Welker has suffered a number of concussions in his career and there is definitely concern within the organization about his long-term status. However Fox told reporters that retirement has not been discussed and team officials are hoping he can recover quickly. At this point it appears that his return is being based solely on his symptoms clearing and not on his concussion history.
Jordan Reed, WAS – Sprained Thumb
According to reports Redskins’ TE Jordan Reed sprained his thumb during Saturday’s preseason game, however the injury is not considered serious and team officials expect him to be fine for the start of the regular season. It isn’t clear how he was hurt, but he was spotted with an ice bag on his hand after the game and he was held out of practice on Monday while he received treatment. He probably won’t play in the team’s final preseason game, but he should be ready to play in Week 1.