Injury Expectations | Wednesday Update | Week 7

A review of the week's first full practice participation report

KEY WEDNESDAY MEDIA UPDATES

***Andrew Luck needed a steroid injection to address inflammation in his shoulder this week. Though Luck's rehab and recovery have progressed more slowly than hoped, this is the first known setback in the process. But this isn't a new issue. Luck didn't wake up on Wednesday, report new soreness, and have a cortisone injection on the same day. This issue has been present for days, and possibly weeks.

It's a significant setback for his chances of playing this season. He was arguably 2-3 weeks from playing before today's news. He'll now need at least one week, and likely two weeks, of rest while the medical staff re-evaluates his progress after the injection. He'll then step back to where he was two weeks ago with a slow progression of return to practice. Do the math and Luck's earliest possible return could be six weeks from now. And that's if he progresses smoothly from today's treatment.

Realistically, I think Luck is a longshot to return in 2017. For months, the Colts have refused to put a timetable on Luck's recovery. I find it odd that Chris Ballard continued to say Luck has no timetable for return -- but told reporters definitively that injured reserve was not a consideration. All involved have been very cautious through this process. I see no reason to rush by a week or two at the end of the season. If Luck's recovery progresses perfectly from this point and if the Colts remain in contention and if Jacoby Brissett has an unexpected hiccup along the way -- we could see Luck after Week 14. More likely, the team decides to continue the strengthening program during the offseason.

There are two other important questions still unanswered here. Why does Luck have inflammation in the shoulder joint? What's the likelihood Luck will return to his pre-injury form in 2018? Those questions are outside the scope of today's feature. I'll address them in depth in next Monday's injury rounds feature. The short version is this: While there's still a chance Luck can return to form, there is reason for concern that this is more than routine post-operative soreness and Luck isn't guaranteed a full recovery.

***Jameis Winston is recovering from last week's AC sprain and has not yet been cleared to throw. Winston was allowed to dress in pads on Wednesday, however, and run through the motions of his position. He took pass drops and simulated handoffs. It's reassuring Winston was on the field rather than in the training room and there is confidence he'll be cleared to throw by the end of the week. However, until that happens, he should be considered questionable. In order to play, he'll have to prove a full and free throwing motion to ensure he's not putting himself at risk of a compensatory injury or inflammation.

***Three high volume running backs will be limited in practice this week. Leonard Fournette sprained his right ankle last week, was reportedly cleared to return but did not, and now Doug Marrone has refused to speculate on his status. Melvin Gordon III is listed on the practice participation report with a shoulder injury; the Chargers provided no updates on his condition on Wednesday. And DeMarco Murray is again fighting hamstring trouble. I expect Fournette and Gordon to play -- and likely without limitation. Murray will be the more interesting follow. He's continued to practice and play through hamstring troubles all season. However, the Titans have a bye following this week's game in Cleveland and could see the extra week as a path to a more certain recovery for Murray.

***There's little clarity in today's practice reports and media interviews on a number of injured wide receivers. Stefon Diggs is still not practicing and probably needs to be on the practice field to have any chance to play without limitation this week. Demaryius Thomas was held out of practice today for treatment but often plays through painful leg injuries. DeVante Parker didn't practice but was not walking with a limp in the locker room; he'll also need to practice tomorrow to feel good about his Week 7 availability. Sterling Shepard and Jordan Matthews both look likely to return.


THURSDAY NIGHT INJURY EXPECTATIONS

Here are the key offensive players listed on the practice participation or game status report for Thursday Night Football:

Kareem Hunt | Knee | Not Listed
Tyreek Hill | Neck | Not listed

Both Hunt and Hill were listed on this week's practice participation report for Kansas City. Neither missed practice time, however, and neither are listed on the game status report. Hill was evaluated for a concussion last week and cleared. Both players are expected to start and see their usual workloads this week.

The Chiefs will be without two starting offensive linemen again. Mitch Morse, who has been out for weeks with a midfoot sprain, and Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, who is recovering from a knee sprain, will both be inactive. Charcandrick West is also out this week with a concussion.

The Raiders are relatively healthy. Linebackers Cory James and Marquel Lee are fighting injuries and may be limited if active.


EARLY WEEK PRACTICE PARTICIPATION REPORT AND EARLY EXPECTATIONS

The Wednesday and Thursday practice participation reports are our first chance to see which players each NFL team are limiting in practice after the previous week's games. Players limited in mid-week practice aren't necessarily in danger of missing that week's game. But they all need to be watched closely.

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

Quarterbacks
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Jameis Winston TB Shoulder Limited       Likely to Play
Marcus Mariota Ten Hamstring Full       Expected to Play
Cam Newton Car Shoulder Limited       Expected to Play
Andy Dalton Cin Ankle Full       Expected to Play
Aaron Rodgers GB Collarbone DNP       Inactive
Andrew Luck Ind Shoulder DNP       Inactive
Sam Bradford Min Knee DNP       Inactive
Trevor Siemian Den Shoulder Full       Expected to Play
Blake Bortles Jac Wrist Full       Expected to Play
Running Backs
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Leonard Fournette Jac Ankle DNP       Likely to Play
Jay Ajayi Mia Knee Full       Expected to Play
Melvin Gordon III LAC Shoulder Limited       Likely to Play
DeMarco Murray Ten Hamstring DNP       Likely to Play
Ty Montgomery GB Ribs Full       Expected to Play
Bilal Powell NYJ Calf DNP       Likely Inactive
Matt Forte NYJ Knee / Toe Limited       Likely to Play
Terrance West Bal Calf DNP       Awaiting Information
Jerick McKinnon Min Ankle Full       Expected to Play
Jonathan Stewart Car Ankle Limited       Expected to Play
Andre Ellington Ari Quadricep Limited       Awaiting Information
Paul Perkins NYG Ribs Limited       Awaiting Information
Rex Burkhead NE Ribs Limited       Awaiting Information
Branden Oliver LAC Hamstring Full       Likely to Play
Robert Turbin Ind Elbow DNP       Inactive
C.J. Prosise Sea Ankle Limited       Likely to Play
Wide Receivers
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Stefon Diggs Min Groin DNP       Likely Inactive
Kelvin Benjamin Car Knee DNP       Likely to Play
Demaryius Thomas Den Calf DNP       Likely to Play
Emmanuel Sanders Den Ankle DNP       Inactive
Chris Hogan NE Ribs Limited       Likely to Play
DeVante Parker Mia Ankle DNP       Likely Inactive
Marqise Lee Jac Knee DNP       Awaiting Information
Sterling Shepard NYG Ankle Limited       Likely to Play
Jordan Matthews Buf Thumb Limited       Awaiting Information
Willie Snead IV NO Hamstring Limited       Likely to Play
Robby Anderson NYJ Ankle DNP       Likely to Play
Breshad Perriman Bal Concussion DNP       Awaiting Information
Jeremy Maclin Bal Shoulder Limited       Awaiting Information
Mike Wallace Bal Back Limited       Likely to Play
Mohamed Sanu Atl Hamstring Limited       Awaiting Information
Michael Floyd Min Hamstring DNP       Awaiting Information
Markus Wheaton Chi Groin DNP       Inactive
Tyler Boyd Cin Knee DNP       Inactive
John Ross Cin Knee Limited       Awaiting Information
Corey Davis Ten Hamstring DNP       Inactive
Kenny Britt Cle Knee / Glute Limited       Likely Inactive
Tight Ends
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Charles Clay Buf Knee DNP       Inactive
George Kittle SF Back / Elbow Full       Expected to Play
Benjamin Watson Bal Knee DNP       Awaiting Information
Maxx Williams Bal Ankle DNP       Likely Inactive
Marcedes Lewis Jac Shoulder Limited       Awaiting Information
Offensive Line
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Jared Veldheer Ari Knee Limited       Expected to Play
Matt Skura Bal Knee DNP       Inactive
Cordy Glenn Buf Ankle / Foot Full       Expected to Play
Ryan Kalil Car Neck Limited       Likely to Play
Hroniss Grasu Chi Hand Limited       Awaiting Information
Joe Thomas Cle Knee DNP       Expected to Play
Tyron Smith Dal Back DNP       Likely to Play
La'el Collins Dal Ankle Full       Expected to Play
Menelik Watson Den Calf DNP       Awaiting Information
Lane Taylor GB Ankle DNP       Unlikely to Play
David Bakhtiari GB Hamstring Limited       Awaiting Information
Bryan Bulaga GB Concussion Limited       Awaiting Information
Brandon Linder Jac Illness DNP       Likely Inactive
Joe Barksdale LAC Foot DNP       Likely to Play
Spencer Pulley LAC Shoulder Limited       Likely to Play
Mike Pouncey Mia Concussion / Hip DNP       Awaiting Information
Nick Easton Min Calf DNP       Likely Inactive
Shaq Mason NE Shoulder Limited       Awaiting Information
Terron Armstead NO Shoulder Limited       Expected to Play
John Jerry NYG Tooth DNP       Likely to Play
Weston Richburg NYG Concussion DNP       Likely Inactive
Kelvin Beachum NYJ Knee Full       Expected to Play
James Carpenter NYJ Shoulder Full       Expected to Play
Brian Winters NYJ Abdomen Full       Expected to Play
Ramon Foster Pit Back DNP       Likely Inactive
Marcus Gilbert Pit Hamstring DNP       Likely Inactive
Maurkice Pouncey Pit Chest DNP       Awaiting Information
Luke Joeckel Sea Knee DNP       Inactive
Edge Players
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Vic Beasley Jr Atl Hamstring Limited       Expected to Play
Charles Johnson Car Groin Limited       Likely to Play
Julius Peppers Car Shoulder Limited       Expected to Play
John Simon Ind Shoulder DNP       Awaiting Information
Andre Branch Mia Knee DNP       Awaiting Information
Olivier Vernon NYG Ankle Limited       Awaiting Information
Cliff Avril Sea Neck DNP IR IR Injured Reserve Injured Reserve
Noah Spence TB Shoulder Limited       Likely to Play
Derrick Morgan Ten Abdomen DNP       Awaiting Information
Defensive Line
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Robert Nkemdiche Ari Calf Limited       Expected to Play
Corey Peters Ari Knee Limited       Awaiting Information
Danny Shelton Cle Ankle Limited       Expected to Play
Corey Liuget LAC Back Limited       Awaiting Information
Ndamukong Suh Mia Knee Full       Expected to Play
Muhammad Wilkerson NYJ Shoulder / Foot DNP       Likely to Play
Leonard Williams NYJ Wrist Full       Expected to Play
Stephon Tuitt Pit Back DNP       Awaiting Information
Michael Bennett Sea Heel DNP       Likely to Play
Linebackers
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Karlos Dansby Ari Hamstring Limited       Expected to Play
Deion Jones Atl Quadricep Limited       Awaiting Information
Duke Riley Atl Knee Limited       Awaiting Information
Ramon Humber Buf Thumb DNP       Inactive
Luke Kuechly Car Concussion DNP       Unlikely to Play
Thomas Davis Car Groin Limited       Awaiting Information
John Timu Chi Ankle / Knee DNP       Inactive
Nick Kwiatkoski Chi Chest Limited       Awaiting Information
Sean Lee Dal Hamstring Full       Expected to Play
Brandon Marshall Den Shoulder DNP       Awaiting Information
Joe Thomas GB Ankle DNP       Inactive
Nick Perry GB Hand / Knee Limited       Likely to Play
Anthony Walker Ind Hamstring DNP       Inactive
Jatavis Brown LAC Ankle Full       Expected to Play
Mark Barron LAR Thumb DNP       Awaiting Information
Anthony Barr Min Concussion / Ankle DNP       Awaiting Information
Jonathan Casillas NYG Neck DNP       Likely Inactive
Calvin Munson NYG Quadricep DNP       Awaiting Information
Vince Williams Pit Hip DNP       Awaiting Information
Ray-Ray Armstrong SF Shoulder Limited       Awaiting Information
Reuben Foster SF Ankle Limited       Likely to Play
Lavonte David TB Ankle Limited       Expected to Play
Kwon Alexander TB Hamstring Full       Expected to Play
Defensive Backs
Player Team Injury Practice Participation Game Status FBGs Expects
Wednesday Thursday Friday
Patrick Peterson Ari Quadricep Limited       Expected to Play
E.J. Gaines Buf Groin Limited       Awaiting Information
Kurt Coleman Car Knee Limited       Awaiting Information
Adam Jones Cin Back Limited       Expected to Play
Dre Kirkpatrick Cin Shoulder Full       Expected to Play
Jabrill Peppers Cle Toe DNP       Awaiting Information
Morgan Burnett GB Hamstring DNP       Likely Inactive
Davon House GB Quadricep Limited       Awaiting Information
Damarious Randall GB Hamstring Limited       Awaiting Information
Kevin King GB Concussion Full       Expected to Play
A.J. Bouye Jac Hamstring DNP       Awaiting Information
Tashaun Gipson Sr Jac Neck DNP       Awaiting Information
Jalen Ramsey Jac Calf Limited       Likely to Play
Lamarcus Joyner LAR Hamstring Full       Expected to Play
Xavier Rhodes Min Shoulder Limited       Awaiting Information
Andrew Sendejo Min Groin Limited       Awaiting Information
Stephon Gilmore NE Concussion / Ankle DNP       Likely Inactive
Eric Rowe NE Groin DNP       Awaiting Information
Landon Collins NYG Ankle Limited       Expected to Play
Kam Chancellor Sea Ankle Limited       Likely to Play
Richard Sherman Sea Achilles Limited       Expected to Play
Jeremy Lane Sea Groin DNP       Likely Inactive
Eric Reid SF Knee Full       Expected to Play
Keith Tandy TB Hip Limited       Awaiting Information
T.J. Ward TB Hip Limited       Likely to Play
Johnathan Cyprien Ten Hamstring DNP       Inactive

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

Follow me on Twitter @JeneBramel for breaking injury news and analysis throughout the week.