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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Week 1 Injury Update #1
Philip Gentles
September 5, 2006

This week's early Training Room Update will take a look at the IDP side of the ball. A full offensive player update will be released on Friday.

Falcons' DL Patrick Kerney, who had minor surgery on his elbow just a little over a week ago, was held out of the team's final preseason game as a precaution. Kerney's elbow is reportedly doing well and team officials expect him to start this weekend against the Panthers.

Eagles' DL Jerome McDougle returned to the practice field on Monday after being out for nearly three weeks with two broken ribs. McDougle has had trouble staying healthy since turning pro and there were reports that he was close to being cut. The good news is that he made the Eagles' final roster and he's finally practicing with the team. However his status for Week 1 remains a question mark, and even if he plays he probably won't have much of a fantasy impact.

Broncos' defensive linemen Courtney Brown and Gerard Warren have both missed significant portions of training camp and the preseason because of injuries but according to reports both could start in this weekend's regular season opener against the Rams. Brown has been recovering from arthroscopic surgery in his left knee and Warren is working his way back from a dislocated big toe. Things are looking good but a decision on their status might not be made until the end of the week.

Seahawks' DL Marcus Tubbs, who missed the team's entire training camp because of soreness and inflammation in his Achilles' tendon, returned to practice on Monday and there is a good chance that he will be available for the start of the regular season.

Colts' DL Corey Simon, who had already lost his spot in the starting lineup, will likely miss Week 1. Simon had arthroscopic surgery to repair damaged cartilage in his knee a couple of weeks ago and it appears that he could be another week away before he's ready to play in a game.

A local newspaper in Miami is reporting that Dolphins' DL Jason Taylor is still having problems with his back. Taylor was sidelined earlier in training camp with an undisclosed back injury but the Dolphins' medical staff reported that he appeared to be improving. Unfortunately according to this latest report Taylor is still dealing with stiffness and in his back. And while he intends to play on Thursday against Steelers it appears that he won't be completely healthy so keep that in mind when you set your starting lineup.

Chargers' LB Steve Foley has been placed on the non-football injury list and will miss the entire 2006 after being shot several times during an altercation with an off-duty police officer. Foley's injuries are not considered life threatening but GM A. J. Smith told reporters that he didn't think he would be able to play football again this year. Because he was placed on the non-football injury list he will not be able to collect his salary for this season.

Jaguars' LB Mike Peterson, who sprained the MCL in his right knee during the team's third preseason game, could be cleared to play in the regular season opener against the Cowboys. Head coach Jack Del Rio told reporters that he was pleased with Peterson's recovery and that he was optimistic about his chances of playing in Week 1. Whether Peterson starts and gets a lot of playing time has yet to be determined but check back with The Huddle on Sunday for a final update on his status.

Panthers' LB Na'il Diggs is day-to-day with a sprained MCL in his knee and his status for Week 1 remains a question mark. Diggs injured his knee during the preseason game against the Dolphins and at the time the team's medical staff thought that the injury could threaten his season. However an MRI confirmed that the injury wasn't as severe as initially thought. After receiving the results of the MRI the Panthers' said that after that Diggs would be out 3 - 6 weeks. So while there appears to be an outside chance that he will be cleared to play in Week 1, he might not be activated until Week 2 or 3. A decision on his status will be made soon so keep an eye on his official injury status.

Ravens' LB Ray Lewis is completely healthy and ready for the start of the regular season. Lewis was limited early in training camp while he recovered from hamstring surgery. But he played the entire first half of the team's preseason game against the Eagles on August 17 and has reportedly looked good in practice since then. Lewis appears to be undervalued this season, but if he can stay healthy he could be in for a monster year.

Patriots' LB Tedy Bruschi is expected to start in Week after missing the entire preseason with a broken wrist. Bruschi injured his wrist on the fourth day of training camp and had surgery to repair and stabilize the bone. He has missed a lot of practice but he was able to run on his own and maintain his conditioning. According to reports Bruschi will likely have his wrist wrapped in a hard cast (padding on the outside) for the game.

Bills' LB Takeo Spikes, who played in the team's third preseason game, looks ready to play in Week 1. Spikes tore his Achilles' Tendon at the beginning of last season and he's worked hard to get back to full strength. He was held out of the team's final preseason game as a precaution but the Bills are convinced that he is ready for the start of the regular season. An official decision on his status won't be made until later in the week but he should be active.

Giants' LB LaVar Arrington will reportedly practice with the team tomorrow and if all goes well he will be cleared to play in Week 1. Arrington, who has had two surgeries within the last year to repair torn cartilage in his right knee, experienced swelling and discomfort in the same knee during training camp. He recently told reporters that he was ready to play and if all goes well in practice this week he will be active for Week 1. But his knee will probably prevent him from being productive this season so don't be surprised if he disappoints.

Texans' LB Kailee Wong, who continues to recover from a torn patella tendon in his right knee, was placed on the Reserve PUP list. Wong has not recovered as quickly as the team had hoped and he will now miss at least the first 6 weeks of the regular season.

Broncos' DB Champ Bailey, who is still dealing with chronic glenohumeral instability in his shoulder, will start in Week 1 against the Panthers but it looks like he will have to wear a protective harness. Bailey has admitted to reporters that his shoulder will be a problem all season and it appears that he will have to wear a shoulder harness in every game this year. Bailey has played hurt before so don't be surprised if he's able to play well, but if he aggravates the injury it could cost him several games.

Redskins' DB Shawn Springs is still recovering from a torn abdominal muscle and his status for Week 1 appears to be in doubt. Head coach Joe Gibbs told reporters that Springs will probably miss the team's regular season opener and he could be out for at least another two weeks. Mike Rumph, who was acquired from the 49ers three weeks ago, will play in Springs' place.

49ers' DB Shawntae Spencer returned to practice on Sunday for the first time since straining his left hamstring about three weeks ago and according to reports he looked pretty good. Spencer told reporters that he expects to play in Week 1 against the Cardinals and while it looks like he will be active for the team's regular season opener, an official decision on his status and playing time will not be made until probably Friday or Saturday.

Colts' DB Mike Doss, who was held out of the team's final preseason game because of a strained calf, returned to practice on Monday. Doss did not line up with the first team but the medical staff expects him to be active for the Colts' Week 1 game.

Steelers' DB Deshea Townsend is still recovering from a broken thumb, however it looks like he will be cleared to play on Thursday against the Dolphins. Townsend's injury, which was described as "slight," did not require surgery but he will have his thumb padded and heavily wrapped for the game.

Patriots' DB Rodney Harrison is expected to start in the team's Week 1 game against the Bills after missing nearly all of the 2005 season with a severe knee injury. Harrison tore the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) and medial collateral ligament (MCL) in his knee last season and had major knee reconstruction to repair the damage. There were concerns that he might not be able to play until several weeks after the start of the regular season. However he has made a very quick recovery, and after starting in the team's August 26 preseason game, it looks like he is ready to start in Week 1. The medical staff will continue to monitor him during practice but unless he suffers a setback he should be in the starting lineup.

According to reports Cardinals' DB Antrel Rolle is completely healthy and he will in the team's starting lineup this weekend against the 49ers. Rolle missed most of his rookie season with torn cartilage in his knee and he had off-season surgery to remove scar tissue that slowing his rehab. The team's medical staff actually believes that Rolle's knee is stronger now than it was before the injury. So if he can stay healthy look for him to have a productive season.