Matt Breida RB, 49ers: ankle sprain
Breida received good news from the scans on his ankle. First an x-ray confirmed that there is no fracture. Then an MRI showed that he is dealing with a standard ankle sprain, not a high ankle sprain, which would come with a much longer recovery time. Still, Breida may not be available for the 49ers Monday night showdown with the Packers. The Optimal Recovery Time for a grade 2 (moderate) ankle sprain is four weeks. When a sprain like this occurs, the ligaments in the ankle get stretched out, leaving him more susceptible to another injury or an aggravation of a previous injury. Keep in mind that Breida already suffered shoulder and knee injuries this season, so he is pretty banged up. A few weeks to recover should lead to an improved Overall Injury Risk.
Brandin Cooks WR, Rams: concussion
Cooks was knocked out of the game with a concussion, his second in a year and third in three years. Cooks demonstrated the fencing response, where the arms tense up in an awkward position after the impact. Now he is in concussion protocol and has a very High Overall Injury Risk. Multiple concussions are always a concern, but they are especially troublesome when they occur in a short period of time like this one. It’s nearly impossible to predict how long it will take a player to clear concussion protocol, but because of his history it shouldn’t happen ahead of week 6. Coach McVay said that Cooks was not showing any symptoms when he reported to the facility on Tuesday. That has lead to some optimism that he will be cleared, but he shouldn’t.
Cooper Kupp WR, Rams: concussion
Kupp was the second Rams receiver whose day ended with a concussion. Kupp is in a slightly better position than Cooks because he doesn’t have the same history of head injuries. He also was not showing any symptoms as of Tuesday. Doing a light workout and then getting in a limited practice will be the next steps if he wants to clear concussion protocol ahead of week 6, but as we said before, concussion recovery times are nearly impossible to predict.
Saquon Barkley RB, Giants: knee injury
I know Barkley isn’t on the Giants’ injury report this week, but that doesn’t mean I’m not a bit concerned about his knee. Barkley appeared to suffer a mild (grade 1) MCL sprain on a late touchdown run. This isn’t necessarily an injury that should force him to miss a game, but he isn’t going to be 100% on Thursday night. Keep a close eye on his lateral movements and explosiveness.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins TE, Jaguars: core muscle injury
The Jaguars placed ASJ on I.R. due to a core muscle injury that he has been playing through for the last month but believe he could be eligible to return. This is likely a sports hernia that will require surgery. He will miss a minimum of eight weeks, which is in line with our Optimal Recovery Time.
Jay Ajayi RB, Eagles: torn ACL
The biggest news of the week was the season-ending knee injury to Jay Ajayi. He was hurt on Sunday but played through the injury and finished the game. The report came on Monday after an MRI confirmed the ligament tear. Ajayi was already playing through a small back fracture and was a High Injury Risk. Complicating things is his history of knee problems. He has a chronic cartilage problem that was already expected to affect his next contract (he’s a free agent at the end of this season.) If this is an isolated ACL tear he should be ready at the start of next season, but he will come with quite a few injury concerns and a High Injury Risk. Ajayi started 2018 an Elevated Injury Risk, which was quickly proved right with the back and knee injuries.
Chris Thompson RB, Redskins: ribs injury
Not only did the Redskins suffer a brutal loss to the Saints, but they also lost Chris Thompson to a ribs injury late in the game. If Thompson is just dealing with a bruise he could return in week 6, but if there is a fracture it could sideline him for multiple weeks. THis only adds to the Redskins’ RB problems. Derrius Guice was already lost to a torn ACL, and he was joined by Rob Kelley and Byron Marshall on I.R.
Adrian Peterson RB, Redskins: dislocated shoulder
AP recovered from a week 4 ankle injury in time to suit up on Monday night following the Redskins’ bye, but he could now be looking at a serious and potentially season-ending shoulder injury. AP started the season a High Injury Risk, and that only got worse a month into the year with his ankle injury. Then on Monday night Peterson dislocated his shoulder. He will undergo an MRI to determine the damage caused.
If it’s a labrum tear, he could try to play through it by wearing an immobilizing brace, but it would be very painful and could affect his performance. Surgery would eventually be needed, but he could try to put it off until the end of the year. If he avoided ligament or cartilage damage, he is still going to be in a lot of pain over the next few weeks and will be dealing with significant stiffness and swelling to the joint.