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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Week 3 Injury Update #1
Philip Gentles
September 20, 2005

David Akers, PK, PHI
Strained Hamstring

Huddle Up: Eagles kicker David Akers, who suffered a hamstring strain in his plant leg (non-kicking) during Sunday's game against the 49ers, is not injured as bad as the team initially feared. An MRI on his leg revealed some mild tearing of the muscle fibers and inflammation of the muscle tissue but the team's medical staff is calling the injury a grade 1 strain which means it isn't serious. Head coach Andy Reid told reporters that Akers is "day-to-day" and according to team officials they will audition several kickers this week in case Akers is unable to play in Week 3. The Eagles do not want this injury to become a lingering problem so don't be surprised if Akers is held out against the Raiders especially if he isn't completely healthy.

Tatum Bell, RB, DEN
Sprained Ankle

Huddle Up: Broncos RB Tatum Bell sprained his ankle on a second-quarter kickoff return during last Sunday's game against the Chargers and after being examined on the sidelines he did not return to the game. Ron Dayne had already replaced Bell as Mike Anderson's backup so his role in the game was reduced to begin with but the injury ended any chance of him being productive. Bell's ankle was a bit sore on Monday and he will be held out of practice for at least a couple of days but head coach Mike Shanahan believes he could be back on the field by Thursday and he could be available to play this upcoming weekend.

Kyle Boller, QB, BAL
Sprained Toe Ligaments

Huddle Up: Ravens QB Kyle Boller, who sat out Sunday's game against the Titans with sprained ligaments in his big right toe, could need surgery to repair the injury which would sideline him up to 2 months. Head coach Brian Billick told reporters that surgery is a possibility but that they will see how he responds treatment over the next few weeks before they make any decisions. The Ravens have a bye in Week 3 so Boller has an extra week to recover but this isn't looking good so don't be surprised if he isn't ready for Week 4 action. Anthony Wright will continue to start as long as Boller is out.

Chris Brown, RB, TEN
Mild Concussion

Huddle Up: Titans RB Chris Brown was knocked from Sunday's game against the Ravens with concussion, did not return and was replaced by Travis Henry. Brown was initially hurt in the first half but he became dizzy in the second half and the team's medical staff decided to play it safe and keep him out. According to reports Brown was feeling better on Monday and head coach Jeff Fisher told reporters that he didn't think the injury would be a problem. Brown will be held out of contact drills this week but unless he suffers a setback he should be back in the starting lineup next weekend against the Rams.

Nate Burleson, WR, MIN
Sprained Knee

Huddle Up: Vikings WR Nate Burleson sprained his left knee in the third quarter of Sunday's game against the Bengals and according to head coach Mike Tice there is a good chance that he will be out for at least a week. Burleson underwent an MRI on his injured knee on Monday and while the results have not been released the team believes he suffered a mild sprain that could keep him out of the lineup this upcoming weekend against the Saints. We'll keep you posted.

Ronald Curry, WR, OAK
Torn Achilles Tendon

Huddle Up: Raiders WR Ronald Curry will miss the remainder of the 2005 season after tearing his left Achilles' tendon in the second half of Sunday night's game against the Chiefs. Curry, who tore the same tendon last season, was hurt while running a route. He was not hit on the play but he did tell reporters that he felt a sharp pain at the base of his calf when he attempted to plant his foot. At the time of the injury he didn't think it was his Achilles but an MRI confirmed that he had indeed re-torn the tendon. Curry will likely undergo surgery to repair the injury sometime this week and he's expected to be ready in time for training camp next year.

Bubba Franks, TE, GB
Knee contusion

Huddle Up: An MRI done on the injured knee of Packers TE Bubba Franks did not show any ligament of cartilage damage but according to team officials he has been diagnosed with a knee contusion and his status for Week 3 is currently unknown. Franks left Sunday's game against the Browns after twisting his knee and after being examined by the team's medical staff he did not return. Franks will probably be held out of practice on Wednesday and Thursday but he could be back on the field by Friday if treatment goes well.

Priest Holmes, RB, KC
Shoulder Contusion

Huddle Up: Chiefs RB Priest Holmes gave everyone a scare on Sunday night after going down in second quarter with a shoulder injury. Holmes was hurt after falling on his shoulder at the end of a run and remained on the ground for several minutes while being examined by the team's medical staff. He was helped off the field and reexamined on the sideline but after missing two possessions he returned to the game. The Chiefs called the injury a shoulder contusion even though according to head coach Dick Vermeil he temporarily lost strength in his arm, which usually indicates a shoulder stinger. Either way Holmes looked strong in the second half against the Raiders and he had the game-clinching run towards the end of the fourth quarter. Holmes will reportedly be limited in practice this week but coach Vermeil expects him to be ready for Week 3 action.

Eric Johnson, TE, SF
Partially Torn Plantar Fascia

Huddle Up: The 49ers were hoping to have TE Eric Johnson back in time for their Week 3 game against the Cowboys, but the news out of San Francisco isn't good. According to several team officials Johnson, who missed the entire pre-season and the first two regular season games with a partially torn plantar fascia in his right foot, could be out for a lot longer than the team had originally expected. And because his recovery has taken so long the team's medical staff is reportedly considering surgery which would then keep him out an additional 3 months. It doesn't look like Johnson will practice this week but head coach Mike Nolan told reporters that he would have more on his status towards the end of the week.

Byron Leftwich, QB, JAX
Strained Groin

Huddle Up: Jaguar QB Byron Leftwich suffered a strained groin in the fourth quarter of Sunday's game against the Colts but he was able to stay in and finish the game. Leftwich was hurt on a scary looking play late in the game when he was sandwiched between two Colt defenders and then bent awkwardly backwards. Leftwich immediately went down and he remained on the ground for several minutes in obvious pain but he limped off the field and returned for the next offensive series after the team's medical staff ruled out a potential knee injury. The Jaguars are still awaiting the official results of an MRI performed on his leg but according to Leftwich he will be ready to play in Week 3. Team officials don't appear to be too worried either. Leftwich will probably be held out of practice this week but everyone in the organization expects him to play, which is good news.

Curtis Martin, RB, NYJ
Sprained Knee

Huddle Up: The status of Jets veteran RB Curtis Martin for Week 3 remains in question as we await the results of an MRI done on his injured right knee. Martin was injured in the first quarter of Sunday's game against the Dolphins but he didn't miss any time and he was able to finish the game. A source close to the Jets has told The Huddle that Martin began to complain of stiffness and discomfort in his knee following the game and the team's medical staff said that it was point tender and swollen. A preliminary examination in the locker room revealed a mild ligament sprain and possible cartilage damage (not a strain, which is being reported everywhere) and he has since undergone an MRI to determine the extent of the injury. Because there is swelling in Martin's knee there is a chance that the results of the MRI could be inconclusive. If that is the case the Jets will have to wait until the inflammation has subsided before they get confirmation on the severity of the injury. The team is already worried that Martin could be out for Week 3 and according to the Jets' source there are concerns that it could keep him out for an extended period of time. But until we get the results of the MRI we just don't won't know for sure. Update: The Jets have received the results of the MRI but are not disclosing the results. According to comments made by HC Herman Edwards the indications are that Martin may miss this week's game, but any final decision won't be made until he hits the practice field later this week.

Marcus Pollard, TE, DET
Concussion

Huddle Up: Saints TE Marcus Pollard suffered a mild concussion when he was hit on the chin during the fourth quarter of Sunday's game against the Bears but according to team officials he should be fine for their next game which is in Week 4. Pollard was hurt when he was hit on the chin by safety Mike Brown's helmet while attempting to catch a ball. Pollard told reporters that he felt fine and that he could have returned to the game but the team's medical staff felt there was nothing to gain from him playing with the game already out of hand. The Lions have a bye this week so look for Pollard to be well-rested and ready to play against the Bucs on October 2nd.

Michael Vick, QB, ATL
Strained Hamstring

Huddle Up: Falcons QB Michael Vick strained his left hamstring during Sunday's game against the Seahawks but even if he misses practice this week head coach Jim Mora still expects him to play in Week 3 against the Bills. Vick injured his hamstring at the end of a 32-yard in the fourth quarter. He immediately grabbed the back of his leg and limped to the sideline. He was replaced by Matt Schaub who then lead the team on a touchdown drive that brought the Falcons to within three points. Vick returned on the next offensive series but he didn't look comfortable and had clearly lost his mobility so after a few plays he was pulled from the game for good. The MRI results on Vick's leg have not been released but the injury doesn't appear to be too serious. The Falcons are obviously concerned about how this will affect his mobility but coach Mora thinks he will be mobile enough to play and be effective next weekend.

Carnell 'Cadillac' Williams, RB, TB
Strained Foot Muscle

Huddle Up: Bucs rookie RB Cadillac Williams strained a muscle in his left foot at the end of second quarter on Sunday against the Bills. Williams did not start the second half but soon returned to the game scoring a touchdown and finishing the game with 128 yards rushing. An MRI done on Cadillac's injured foot revealed some muscular inflammation but there was no tearing and no ligament damage. He has been fitted for a protective boot as a precaution and while he will be limited in practice this week head coach John Gruden is "very optimistic" about his chances of playing against the Packers this upcoming weekend. Gruden told reporters that he will know more about Cadillac's status later on in the week but at this point it looks like he will ready to play in Week 3.

IDP Update

Chiefs' DT Ryan Sims did not play on Sunday night against the Raiders and according to head coach Dick Vermeil he could be out for the remainder of the season. Sims dislocated two bones in his foot on the first series of the team's Week 1 win over the Jets and while X-rays did not reveal any breaks an MRI showed several ligament tears that could require surgery. The team's medical staff are waiting to see how he responds to treatment and if all goes well he could be back in 6 weeks but the Chiefs don't appear to be too optimistic so don't expect to see him on the field anytime soon. Titans' DL Albert Haynesworth had to leave Sunday's game against the Ravens after spraining his left knee in the third quarter. Haynesworth underwent an MRI on Monday and while the results have not been released Jeff Fisher is calling the injury minor and he doesn't expect it to keep him out of action long. Bears' DL Adewale Ogunleye sprained his left ankle in the first half against the Lions on Sunday and did not return to the game. X-rays in the locker room were negative and head coach Lovie Smith expects Ogunleye to be ready for Week 3 but the team is still awaiting the results of an MRI before they make any decisions. Texans' DL Gary Walker will not practice this week but could be ready in time for the team's Week 4 game against the Bengals despite separating his left shoulder against the Steelers this past weekend. Walker sprained his Acromioclavicular joint but according to reports the injury won't require surgery.

Bills' LB London Fletcher left in the second quarter of Sunday's game against the Bucs after straining his hamstring. Fletcher will be held out of practice this week as a precaution but the injury isn't considered serious and he should be ready for Week 3. Jets' DB Erik Coleman dislocated and fractured his right thumb during Sunday's game against the Dolphins. Coleman underwent surgery on Monday to repair the injury but according to team officials he could be back in time for next weekend's game. The Jets will make a decision on his status on either Wednesday or Thursday but if he is cleared to play he will have to wear a padded cast on his injured hand. Jaguars' DB Donovan Darius could be out for the remainder of the season after spraining the ACL in his left knee during Sunday's game against the Colts. Darius was injured on a punt return in the second quarter and was taken to the locker room for an examination. Swelling within the joint prevented the team's medical staff from doing an MRI on Darius' knee but a preliminary test done by a team physician came up positive for his ACL. As soon as the inflammation is controlled he will undergo an MRI. Panthers' DB Mike Minter will miss 1 - 2 weeks after straining his calf muscle in the fourth quarter against the Patriots. Minter told reporters that he was feeling better on Monday but that he doesn't think that he will be ready to play until Week 4. Vikings' DB Darren Sharper has not been ruled out of Week 3, but his status is in question because of a sprained left knee. Sharper left Sunday's game against the Bengals in the second quarter after injuring his knee. He was examined on the sideline and he tried to return to the game but he continued to have problems and he was removed from the game in the second half. Team officials don't believe that the injury is serious and according to head coach Mike Tice there is a chance that Sharper will be active next weekend but his status will depend on how he does in practice at the end of the week.