Gameday Injury Expectations: Week 3

What to expect from this week's injured offensive players

UNDERSTANDING THE NFL'S INJURY REPORT

The injury report released by the NFL is actually two reports. The first is the Practice Participation report, which lists which injured players were able to practice and how much. It also includes players who rested or missed practice for non-injury related reasons. The second is the Game Status Report, which gives the probability a player will play, i.e. Questionable, Doubtful, Out. The Practice Participation Report is released every day of the week (Monday through Saturday). The Game Status Report is released with the Friday participation report (Wednesday for Thursday games, Saturday for Monday games).

The NFL has made the practice participation report more complicated this season. Teams are no longer allowed to declare players "probable" to play. The current designations are Questionable (Uncertain to Play), Doubtful (Unlikely to Play), and Out. In our Monday Injury Rounds column, we'll often review how these changes are impacting the injury reports.

In this feature, I'll include the Game Status Listing, my expectation of their likelihood to play, and the player's practice participation throughout the week.

Here's the Key:

PLAYER | INJURY | GAME STATUS LISTING | FOOTBALLGUYS EXPECTATION

Practice Participation Listing by Day

I'll also include a table at the bottom of the article for easy reference.

Here's the latest on every relevant injured skill position player on the practice participation and game status report this week:

Quarterback

RUSSELL WILSON | ANKLE | NOT LISTED | EXPECTED TO PLAY

Practice Participation: Wed - Full | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

Wilson didn't have his usual mobility inside and outside the pocket last week but finished the game without a setback. He had another full week of practice this week and will have the benefit of an extra day at home to rehab. There's again a small risk of an in-game setback, but Wilson should be nearing a complete recovery.

Andrew Luck | Shoulder | Questionable | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Full

The Colts continue to limit the number of practice throws they put on Luck's arm. But there has been no obvious signs of fatigue in Luck's play -- i.e. inaccuracy, unwillingness to make difficult passes, unwillingness to throw the ball deep -- that would suggest a reason for concern.

Others of note: Andy Dalton (Hip - Not Listed) has fully practiced all week and should play without limitation. Jay Cutler (Thumb - Doubtful) reportedly tried to get the Bears to clear him this week but it looks very unlikely he will play. Josh McCown (Shoulder - Out) has been declared out with a high-grade AC sprain.


Running Back

C.J. Anderson | Rib | NOT LISTED | EXPECTED TO PLAY

Practice Participation: Wed - Full | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

Anderson has been listed on the injury report all week with a rib injury. He's fully practiced and is not listed on the game status report. There have been no concerns about Anderson's health or availability for Sunday. He's good to go.

Matt Forte | Knee | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

The limited Wednesday practice was likely a veteran rest day for Forte, who has had 59 touches through two games. Forte fully practiced later in the week and is not listed on the game status report. He should play without limitation.

Thomas Rawls | Shin | Doubtful | Inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - DNP | Fri - DNP

Pete Carroll called Rawls' injury a lower leg contusion and strain at various points this week. Regardless of the specific nature of Rawls' injury, he wasn't able to practice this week and the Seahawks are prepared to roll with Christine Michael. There's a small chance Rawls will come into the training room on Saturday feeling much better than expected. If that happens, the team will watch him warmup. But I think Rawls is much more likely to miss this week's game than work himself into the game-time decision category by Sunday morning.

Jamaal Charles | Knee | Doubtful | Likely Inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Limited

Charles took most of his practice reps with the scout team this week. Andy Reid's Friday comments give us a sliver of hope Charles will be activated this week, but the Doubtful tag is the most telling detail again this week. The Chiefs' running back chart is deep and there continues to be no reason to rush Charles -- whatever the reason for the ongoing delay in his recovery. If Charles is a surprise active this week, don't expect him to see more than five carries.

Rashad Jennings | Thumb | Questionable | inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Limited

Jennings is likely to play with a small cast/splint on his thumb. That will severely limit his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield and leave his usage dependent on game script even more than usual. Jennings has addressed the media as if he'll play all week, and I expect him to be active. But expect him to play on run downs only.

Sunday AM Update: Ian Rapoport is reporting Jennings will not play today. He is now officially inactive.

Jerick McKinnon | Toe | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Full | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

McKinnon has been listed on the participation report with a toe injury since Week 1 but has yet to miss a late week practice. This week, McKinnon didn't miss any practice reps. He's yet to show any limitations from the toe injury and isn't listed on this week's game status report.

Chris Ivory | Illness | Questionable | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

Ivory returned to practice on Wednesday and was available for consecutive practices by later in the week. A multiple night hospital stay may have affected his conditioning and we're still not sure what the diagnosis of concern may have been. Ivory will likely be active and cut into T.J. Yeldon's snap count, but I'm not expecting Ivory to play extensively.

Others of note: DeAngelo Williams (NIR - Not Listed) and Frank Gore (NIR - Not Listed) both had veteran rest days on Wednesday and fully practiced on Thursday and Friday. Doug Martin (Hamstring - Out), Jonathan Stewart (Hamstring - Out), and Arian Foster (Groin - Out) have all been declared out and are likely to miss multiple weeks. Matt Jones (Shoulder - Not Listed) will again play this week. C.J. Prosise (Hand - Questionable) has a chance for limited duty this week. Ka'Deem Carey (Hamstring - Doubtful) is not likely to play.


Wide Receiver

Julio Jones | Calf | Questionable | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Thurs - DNP | Fri - DNP | Sat - Limited

During the first two weeks, Jones has been able to return to practice by the end of each week. This week, Jones added a calf strain to his list of minor ailments. In isolation, the aggravated ankle sprain or the calf strain would be easier to play through. Together, Jones has nagging injuries to both lower legs. It's difficult to know how high the risk may be, but this a set up for an aggravation or another cascade injury. If Jones returns to a full practice on Saturday, his availability and effectiveness for Monday night will be more assured. If not, look for his media interviews to be telling. For now, Dan Quinn has told reporters he expects Jones to play, but I think this will become the dreaded Monday night Questionable / Game-time Decision. I'll update here after the Saturday practice report.

Sunday AM Update: Jones told reporters he'll play on Monday night. His comments reassure against the tough Monday night game-time decision.

Brandon Marshall | Knee / Foot | Questionable | likely active / limited

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - DNP | Fri - Listed

Early this week, I wasn't worried about Marshall. He was able to play through his knee injury last Thursday night and has missed multiple practices and played effectively in the past. The Friday limited practice is somewhat reassuring on Marshall, as was his media availability. However, the tone of Marshall's comments -- "I'm not where I want to be, but there's still time." -- is a little ominous. Marshall and Todd Bowles both stated that Saturday and Sunday morning treatment sessions are important. Those will be made more difficult by the Jets' travel to Kansas City. I lean toward Marshall playing. Limited snaps and limited effectiveness are risks, especially against a Kansas City cornerback group that includes Marcus Peters.

Sunday AM Update: Adam Schefter reports Marshall will play today but likely be on a snap count. Marshall sounded more optimistic yesterday afternoon. I suspect this is an injury most players would not play through. There are weather concerns and matchup concerns. Marshall has a low statistical floor today.

Sammy Watkins | Foot | Questionable | Inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - DNP | Fri - DNP

Nothing about Watkins this week is reassuring. He looked limited at times last Thursday night against the Jets. Despite the extra days of recovery, he didn't practice on Wednesday and didn't return to practice later in the week. There have been hints for weeks the team and Watkins are considering a long rest to allow whatever is limiting Watkins' from returning to full form to heal. Rex Ryan didn't sound optimistic at all during Friday afternoon's media session. We've seen players -- including Watkins -- play effectively despite similar concerns in the past. But this one feels different. I think Watkins is much closer to doubtful than probable. Should he play, limited snaps are likely and he'll probably see stud cover corner Patrick Peterson on the majority of those snaps.

Sunday AM Update: Watkins is inactive today.

Stefon Diggs | Groin | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Not Listed | Thurs - Not Listed | Fri - DNP

This is an extremely odd practice line. Diggs wasn't on the injury report until Friday, when he was added as a DNP due to a groin injury. But the Vikings don't have him on the game status report at all, which by definition means he's "certain to play."  Mike Zimmer called the DNP precautionary and multiple beat writers confirmed that Diggs' absence on the game status report was not an error. Late week muscle strains are always worrisome, but this is as reassuring as it gets when they occur.

Alshon Jeffery | Knee | Questionable | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - DNP | Fri - Limited

Jeffery is known for playing -- and playing effectively -- through limiting leg injuries. He hobbled through multiple games in the past two seasons with hamstring injuries and managed close to his usual production. The specifics of Jeffery's knee condition are not known and the Thursday DNP was worrisome. But Jeffery was back to practice on Friday and told reporters he felt "pretty good." Media availability is always a good sign and Jeffery's history of playing through injuries means he's likely to suit up on Sunday. Reports on Jeffery's pregame warmup would be helpful, but the Bears play Sunday night. I expect one or more national writers to have a Sunday morning update. I'll update here then.

Sunday AM Update: Ian Rapoport tweeted that Jeffery wants to test his knee in pre-game warmups but is expected to play.

T.Y. Hilton | Knee | Questionable | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Not Listed | Thurs - Limited | Fri - DNP

The Colts are publicly saying -- through John Pagano -- that there's no concern on Hilton and the missed Friday practice was rest only. Hilton has been on the injury report with a knee injury in the past and played. However, the day-to-day participation downgrades are new. Frequently, a participation line like Hilton's raises multiple red flags. However, the Colts have set an odd precedent this year with Andrew Luck and Hilton, who have still remained major parts of the team's game plan despite missing important practices. Ongoing soreness is an issue here and a Sunday morning report that Hilton is closer to a game-time decision than Pagano is saying is definitely possible. I would lean toward Hilton playing his usual number of snaps this weekend, but watch for any weekend news of concern.

A.J. Green | Not Injury Related | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Not Listed | Fri - Not Listed

Green missed practice for the birth of his child earlier this week. There are no injury concerns and Green is set to play.

Allen Robinson | Illness | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

Robinson missed Wednesday's practice with an illness but returned to full practices the rest of the week. He should not be limited by the illness.

Larry Fitzgerald | Knee | Not Listed| Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

The Cardinals have been limiting Fitzgerald's practice reps early in the week, but he has never shown any signs of limitation after his preseason MCL sprain. This week should be no exception after returning to full Thursday and Friday practice sessions.

Demaryius Thomas | Hip | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Full | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

After what appeared to be serious early season concern over an aggravated and chronic hip condition, Thomas returned to play last week and looked healthy. He fully practiced this week and is not listed on the game status report. We've seen Thomas suffer in-game aggravations already this season, but the practice participation tells us Thomas and the Broncos don't see a need to limit him during the week. That's a great sign for another week of full usage and effective play.

WILLIE SNEAD | TOE | questionable | Game-Time Decision

Practice Participation: Thurs - DNP | Fri - DNP| Sat - Limited

Snead was unexpectedly on the injury report on Thursday and has yet to practice this week. The Saints rarely comment on player injuries and aren't likely to here. It's not known whether Snead has a turf toe like injury or something less worrisome. Hopefully, Saturday's practice participation and media availability give us more clues on his Monday night availability. For now, consider Snead a game-time decision with the possibility of limited snaps.

Sunday AM Update: New Orleans beat writers expect Snead to play, but he referred to himself as a game-time decision. Media availability is a strong sign that Snead is expected to be active but the minimal practice time and locker room hedging are not optimistic signs.

Doug Baldwin | Knee | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

Baldwin's injury mechanism last week looked bad. He returned to the game, but the Seahawks were worried enough to send him for an early week MRI. Imaging studies were negative and Baldwin recovered well enough to fully practice by late week. He's not listed on the game status report and should be at near full strength this week.

Eric Decker | Shoulder | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Full

Decker increased his practice participation all week, fully practiced on Friday, and is not listed on the game status report. There have been no indications he'll be limited this week.

DeVante Parker | Hamstring | Questionable | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Limited

Parker had a tremendous game last week in his return from an aggravated hamstring strain. It's likely the Dolphins are managing his practice reps, but another week of limited practice after a full workload in Week 2 means we have to consider the possibility the hamstring tightened up on him at some point in the last few days. I'm optimistic on Parker, but it would be nice to see a positive report this weekend before dismissing the limited practice time.

DeSean Jackson | Knee / Ankle | NOT LISTED | EXPECTED TO PLAY

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Lim | Fri - Full

As late as Thursday afternoon, Washington was saying Jackson was a game-time decision for this week. Treatment must have been more effective than expected. Jackson fully practiced on Friday and is not listed on the game status report. He'll be active and looks likely to see his usual workload this week.

Quincy Enunwa | Rib | NOT LISTED | EXPECTED TO PLAY

Practice Participation: Wed - Full | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

Enunwa was limited at times last Thursday after taking a hard hit to his side. He's fully practiced this week and is not on the game status report. Rib injuries are painful and can be limiting. Expect the team to use extra padding for comfort. Though there's a small risk Enunwa will take another hit and need to miss a few plays, he can be expected to play effectively.

Mohamed Sanu | Ankle | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Thurs - DNP | Fri - Limited | Sat - Full

Sanu struggled last week through an ankle sprain and has managed a limited Friday practice only. I haven't seen anything to suggest he'll miss Monday night's game. I will update here after Saturday's practice participation and media session.

Sunday AM Update: Sanu is not listed on the game status report and is expected to play.

Tyler Lockett | Knee | Questionable | EXPECTED TO PLAY

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

The Seahawks have listed nine players questionable who fully practiced Friday so far this year. Lockett is one of four in that group this week. After returning to finish last week's game and fully practicing both Thursday and Friday, Lockett should be considered more probable than questionable.

Tyrell Williams | Shoulder | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Full | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

Williams fully practiced all week, is not listed on the game status report, and is fully expected to play.

Josh Doctson | Achilles | Questionable | Inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Limited

Washington will continue to limit Doctson's practice reps to minimize the risk of an aggravation of his Achilles tendinitis. He looked healthy last week and was trusted with a higher snap count and more targets. He's expected to play.

Sunday AM Update: Doctson is a surprise inactive today.

Markus Wheaton | Shoulder | Not Listed | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - Full | Thurs - Full | Fri - Full

Wheaton will likely return to play this week. Last week's full Wednesday and Thursday practice with a surprise Friday DNP was worrisome for an aggravation. But Wheaton fully practiced on Friday this week and was clearly optimistic in media sessions. He's not listed on the game status report and will play.

Kendall Wright | Hamstring | Questionable | Inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Limited

Wright is continuing to recondition from an aggravated hamstring strain. There's a chance he returns to limited duty this week but his availability is still unknown.

Others of note: Donte Moncrief (Shoulder - Out) and Corey Coleman (Hand - Out) have both been declared out and aren't expected to return for multiple weeks.


Tight End

Tyler Eifert | Ankle | Doubtful | Inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - Limited | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Limited

Eifert continues to rehab from offseason ankle surgery. The Bengals rarely activate players they list doubtful. I believe the plan is to condition Eifert with the hope he'll be able to participate in limited packages next Thursday night and allow him to return to full duty the following week. It's very unlikely he plays this week.

Antonio Gates | Hamstring | Doubtful | Likely Inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - DNP | Fri - DNP

Gates has played through torn plantar fascia and MCL sprains in past seasons, but there's been no reason for optimism this week. He's not practiced, not talked to the media, the Chargers signed an extra tight end to the practice squad to save practice reps on the remaining healthy tight ends this week, and Gates has been listed doubtful on the game status report. It would be shocking to see Gates active, much less productive this week.

Delanie Walker | Hamstring | QUESTIONABLE | inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Limited | Fri - DNP

Walker is the toughest tight end read this week. After Wednesday's missed practice, he was allowed to talk to the media and said there's "not a chance" he missed this week's game. The limited Thursday practice supported his argument. The Friday DNP has thrown a wrench into the optimistic narrative, however. Walker told reporters on Friday his hamstring was "just a nag" and "getting better." There remains some reason for optimism here but it's now difficult to know if Walker will be limited if he plays. I'll update here with any media reports of note.

Sunday AM Update: Adam Schefter tweeted this morning that Walker's availability today will depend on how his hamstring responds to pregame warmups. He remains a game-time decision. Should he be active, it's likely he'll be limited. The missed Friday practice and concern through this morning strongly suggest Walker's hamstring did not respond well to treatment as the week progressed.

Sunday AM Update: Walker is inactive today.

Zach Ertz | rib | declared out | inactive

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Full

No surprise here. Ertz has a rib injury in a concerning location. The Eagles have multiple tight ends playing well in his absence. And the team's bye is next week, giving Ertz the benefit of another full week to recover.

Eric Ebron | Back | QUESTIONABLE | Expected to Play

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Full

Ebron has increased his practice participation all week, spoke with the media all week, and is expected to play. The Lions have listed nine players questionable with a full Friday practice this year against just one player not listed after a full Friday practice. Though in-game aggravations of back injuries are possible, consider Ebron much closer to probable than questionable.

Charles Clay | KNEE | QUESTIONABLE | Active

Practice Participation: Wed - DNP | Thurs - Limited | Fri - Limited 

Clay has been limited this week with a chronic knee injury. He'll be watched carefully during pre-game warmups.

Others of Note: Kyle Rudolph (Knee - Not Listed) and Jimmy Graham (Knee - Not Listed) both returned to full late week practices and are expected to play their usual number of snaps. Virgil Green (Calf - Out) has been declared out.


PRACTICE PARTICIPATION, Game Status, AND game EXPECTATIONS
 

RED = DOWNGRADE
GREEN = UPGRADE 



Quarterbacks
Player Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Russell Wilson Ankle Full Full Full Not Listed Expected to Play
Jay Cutler Thumb DNP DNP DNP Doubtful Inactive
Andrew Luck  Shoulder DNP Limited Full Questionable Expected to Play
Andy Dalton  Hip Full Full Full Not Listed Active
Josh McCown  Shoulder DNP DNP DNP Out Declared Out
Tony Romo  Back DNP  DNP DNP Out Declared Out


Running Backs
Player Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Adrian Peterson Knee DNP DNP DNP Out Placed on Injured Reserve
DeAngelo Williams  Not Injury Related DNP Not Listed Not Listed Not Listed Expected to Play
C.J. Anderson  Rib Full Full Full Not Listed Active
Matt Forte  Knee Limited Full Full Not Listed Active
Jamaal Charles  Knee Limited Limited Limited Doubtful Likely Inactive
Doug Martin  Hamstring DNP DNP DNP Out Declared Out
Jonathan Stewart  Hamstring DNP DNP DNP Out Declared Out
Arian Foster  Groin DNP DNP DNP Out Declared Out
Thomas Rawls  Shin DNP DNP DNP Doubtful Inactive
Rashad Jennings  Thumb Limited Limited Limited Questionable Inactive
Frank Gore  Not Injury Related DNP Full Full Not Listed Expected to Play
Jerick McKinnon  Toe Full Full Full  Not Listed Active
Chris Ivory  Illness Limited Full Full Questionable Active
Matt Jones  Shoulder Full Full Full Not Listed Active
C.J. Prosise  Hand Full Full Full Questionable Expected to Play
Ka'Deem Carey Hamstring DNP DNP DNP Doubtful Likely Inactive
Kenneth Dixon  Knee DNP DNP DNP Out Declared Out


Wide Receivers
Player Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Julio Jones* Calf DNP (Thu) DNP (Fri) Limited (Sat) Questionable Expected to Play
Brandon Marshall Knee / Foot DNP DNP Limited Questionable Expected to Play / Likely Limited
Sammy Watkins Foot DNP DNP DNP Questionable Inactive
Stefon Diggs Groin Not Listed Not Listed DNP Not Listed Active
Alshon Jeffery Knee Limited DNP Limited Questionable Expected to Play
T.Y. Hilton Knee Not Listed Limited DNP Questionable Expected to Play
A.J. Green Not Injury Related DNP Not Listed Not Listed  Not Listed Active
Allen Robinson Illness DNP Full Full Not Listed Active
Larry Fitzgerald Knee Limited Full Full Not Listed Active
Demaryius Thomas Hip Full Full Full Not Listed Active
Willie Snead* Toe DNP (Thu) DNP (Fri) Limited (Sat)  Questionable Game-time Decision / Likely Limited
Doug Baldwin Knee Limited Full Full Not Listed Expected to Play
Eric Decker Shoulder DNP Limited Full Not Listed Expected to Play
DeVante Parker Hamstring Limited Limited Limited Questionable Active
DeSean Jackson Knee / Ankle DNP Limited Full Not Listed Active
Quincy Enunwa Rib Full Full Full Not Listed Expected to Play
Donte Moncrief Shoulder DNP DNP DNP Out Declared Out
Corey Coleman Hand Not Listed DNP DNP Out Declared Out
Mohamed Sanu* Ankle DNP (Thu) Limited (Fri) Full (Sat) Not Listed Expected to Play
Tyler Lockett Knee Limited Full Full Questionable Expected to Play
Tyrell Williams Shoulder Full Full Full  Not Listed Expected to Play
Josh Doctson Achilles Limited Limited Limited Questionable  Inactive
Markus Wheaton Shoulder Full Full Full Not Listed Expected to Play
Kendall Wright Hamstring Limited Limited Limited Questionable  Inactive
J.J. Nelson Shoulder Full Full Full  Not Listed Active
Greg Salas Groin Not Listed Limited Limited Questionable Inactive


Tight Ends
Player Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Tyler Eifert Ankle Limited Limited Limited Doubtful Inactive
Antonio Gates Hamstring DNP DNP DNP Doubtful Likely Inactive
Delanie Walker Hamstring DNP Limited DNP Questionable Inactive
Zach Ertz Rib DNP DNP DNP Out Declared Out
Kyle Rudolph Knee Limited Full Full Not Listed Active
Eric Ebron Back DNP Limited Full Questionable Active
Jimmy Graham Knee Limited Full Full Not Listed Expected to Play
Charles Clay Knee DNP Limited Limited Questionable Active
Virgil Green Calf DNP DNP DNP Out Declared Out
Josh Hill* Ankle DNP (Thu) DNP (Fri) DNP (Sat) Questionable  Likely Inactive
C.J. Uzomah Rib DNP Full Full Not Listed Active

*Note: Monday night players with asterisk practice Thursday/Friday/Saturday