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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Week 13 Injury Update #2
Philip Gentles
December 1, 2006

Ronnie Brown, RB, MIA
Fractured Hand

Huddle Up: Dolphins' RB Ronnie Brown, who had surgery last week to repair a fracture in his hand, has already been ruled out for Week 13 and according to head coach Nick Saban there is a good chance that he will miss Week 14 as well. Brown fractured the first metacarpal in his left hand during last Thursday's game against the Lions and he had five pins surgically inserted into his hand to help stabilize it. He is currently wearing a large cast and he will have it removed next week so that the medical staff can X-ray his hand to see if the fracture is healing. Sammy Morris will get the start while Brown is out.

Marc Bulger, QB, STL
Bruised Rib

Huddle Up: Rams' QB Marc Bulger, who aggravated a lingering rib injury in last week's game, was able to practice on Wednesday and Thursday with the help of pain killers and he's listed as probable for Week 13. Bulger told reporters that his rib was feeling a bit better and that he would be ready to play this weekend against the Cardinals. However the injury has affected his production so don't be surprised if he has another sub-par performance on Sunday.

Dallas Clark, TE, IND
Sprained ACL

Huddle Up: Colts' TE Dallas Clark will not play this week and he could potentially miss the remainder of the season after suffering a sprain to the ACL in his right knee during last weekend's game against the Eagles. The medical staff initially believed that the damage done to Clark's knee was enough to place him on Injured Reserve and Clark reportedly told teammates following the game that his ACL was torn. But according to reports an MRI done on Monday did not show a tear. It did reveal damage to the anterior cruciate ligament, however head coach Tony Dungy said that the injury will not require surgery. Unfortunately any damage to the ACL is serious so don't be surprised if he doesn't play another regular season game this year. Ben Utecht will take his place in the starting lineup.

Marques Colston, WR, NO
High Ankle Sprain

Huddle Up: Saints' WR Marques Colston hasn't full recovered from a high ankle sprain however the team's medical staff is working hard to get him ready for Sunday's game against the 49ers. Colston, who was inactive for last weekend's game, was limited in practice on Wednesday and Thursday and according to reports he doesn't look good running. He was seen limping after running routes on Wednesday and he was held out of team drills on Thursday. The Saints remain optimistic about his chances of playing in Week 13 but at this point it isn't looking good. Colston will likely be a game-time decision so don't expect to hear anything concrete until after he takes part in pre game warm-ups.

Daunte Culpepper, QB, MIN
Arthroscopic Knee Surgery / Recovery From Major Knee Surgery

Huddle Up: Dolphins' QB Daunte Culpepper, who continues to recover from major knee surgery, underwent minor arthroscopic surgery on Thursday to remove a piece of cartilage that the medical staff believed was slowing his recovery. Culpepper has complained of soreness and stiffness in his knee for over a month and according to reports his rehabilitation wasn't going as well as the the team had hoped. He was sent for a second opinion earlier this week and according to reports an examination revealed that there was a loose piece of articular cartilage under his patella that continued to get caught in his joint. That problem has now been fixed and he should resume his original rehab in a couple of days. Culpepper has already been ruled out for Week 13 and a timetable has not been set for his return.

DeShaun Foster, RB, CAR
Hyperextended Elbow

Huddle Up: Panthers' RB DeShaun Foster was inactive for last week's game however his injured elbow has improved and after practicing with the team on Wednesday and Thursday it looks like he will be back in the starting lineup on Monday night against the Eagles. Foster is still officially listed as questionable but according to reports he looked great in practice on Thursday and if all goes well on Friday he will likely be upgraded to probable. An official decision on his availability for Week 13 probably won't come until gameday but check back on Sunday for an update.

Frank Gore, RB, SF
Leg Contusions

Huddle Up: 49ers' RB Frank Gore was upgraded from questionable to probable after practicing with the team on Thursday and according to reports the team expects him to start on Sunday against the Saints. Gore suffered a couple of contusions in last Sunday's game, however neither injury is considered serious and after being limited in practice on Wednesday he was cleared to take part in team drills on Thursday and he reportedly looked very good. So unless he suffers a setback expert him to start in Week 13.

Matt Hasselbeck, QB, SEA
Fractured Finger

Huddle Up: Seahawks' QB Matt Hasselbeck, who fractured a finger in his non-throwing hand in Monday night's game against the Packers, took part in all team drills on Wednesday and Thursday and according to reports he will be back on the starting lineup this weekend against the Broncos. Hasselbeck was reportedly hurt when his hand struck the helmet of a defensive player in the first half. He didn't miss any time and he was able to finish the game. X-rays and an MRI done on Tuesday revealed a small fracture in his finger. Hasselbeck was seen wearing a padded glove on his injured hand while he practiced on Wednesday and Thursday and he will reportedly wear the same glove when he plays this weekend. But since the injury occurred to his non-throwing hand it shouldn't affect his performance.

Priest Holmes, RB, KC
Spinal Column Bruise / Stenosis

Huddle Up: As expected Chiefs' RB Priest Holmes will not play this season, however GM Carl Peterson told reporters that he isn't ruling a comeback in 2007. Holmes, who has not played since last season because of damage to his spinal column, has reportedly made progress in his recovery. Unfortunately he has still not been cleared to practice and there is concern that his injury could prevent him resuming his football career. Larry Johnson remains the unquestioned starter in Kansas City.

Joe Horn, WR, NO
Strained Groin

Huddle Up: Saints' WR Joe Horn continues to be bothered by a lingering groin injury but even after missing the team portions of practice on Wednesday and Thursday it appears that he will still be active for this weekend's game against the 49ers. Horn was able to play in last week's game, however he complained of soreness in his thigh on Monday morning and he has been held out team drills as a precaution since then. The medical staff expects him to be more involved in practice today (Friday) and they believe that he will be back in the starting lineup on Sunday. But check back on gameday for an update just in case.

Sebastian Janikowski, KIK, SEA
Lower Back Stiffness

Huddle Up: Raiders' KIK Sebastian Janikowski, who complained of stiffness in his lower back prior to Wednesday's practice, has not been able to kick this week and according to reports the team is concerned that he might not be ready in time for this weekend's game. Janikowski told reporters that his back "locked up" on him earlier this week and it has given him trouble ever since. The Raiders reportedly brought in veteran Paul Edinger for look and they will go with Edinger this weekend if Janikowski is unable to kick. This could come down to a game-time decision so check back with The Huddle on Sunday for an update on his status.

Eric Johnson, TE, SF
Sprained MCL

Huddle Up: 49ers' veteran TE Eric Johnson will miss the next 2 - 3 weeks after spraining his medial collateral ligament in his left knee during practice on Wednesday. According to reports Johnson was hurt early in practice and he said that the pain in his knee progressively got worse. An MRI performed on his knee later that revealed damage to his MCL that will force him to miss at least two games. Rookie Vernon Davis, who was out for nearly two months with a broken leg, is now completely healthy so Johnson's absence won't be a major problem for the 49ers.

Itula Mili, TE, SEA
Concussion

Huddle Up: According to reports Seahawks' TE Itula Mili continues to deal with headaches and dizzy spells as a result of the concussion that knocked him out of Monday night's game against the Packers. Mili has not been cleared to practice and it appears that he won't be ready to play in this weekend's game. There is concern that this could be the start of post-concussion syndrome, which would likely keep him sidelined for at least couple of weeks. Let's just hope he makes a quick recovery.

Santana Moss, WR, WAS
Strained Hamstring

Huddle Up: Redskins' WR Santana Moss, who has been bothered by an injured hamstring all season, is not listed on the team's official injury report and according to local media reports he took part in practice on Wednesday and Thursday without a problem. Team officials have acknowledged that Moss' hamstring wouldn't be 100% again this season but it appears that he is healthy enough to play. Will he produce? That's another story.

Jeremy Shockey, TE, NYG
Compound Finger Dislocation

Huddle Up: Giants' TE Jeremy Shockey, who suffered a compound dislocation to the ring finger in his left hand during pre game warm-ups. last week, is not listed on the team's official injury report and he will be ready to play in Sunday's game against the Cowboys. Shockey had his injured finger wrapped for practice on Wednesday and Thursday but he was still able to take part in all team drills without a problem. The injury sounded pretty bad when it happened but he was able to play in the game and practice this week. So there is no reason to believe that this injury will affect his performance on Sunday.

Donte Stallworth, WR, NO
Strained Hamstring

Huddle Up: Eagles' WR Donte Stallworth aggravated his hamstring problem in practice last week and again during last Sunday's game against the Colts. But after complaining of soreness in the back of his leg on Monday he was cleared to practice with the team on Wednesday and it looks like he will be back on the starting lineup on Monday night against the Panthers. According to reports Stallworth, who is listed as probable on the official injury report, appeared to favor his leg at times in practice on Wednesday but his leg looked fine on Thursday and if all goes well on Friday he should be cleared to play in Week 13. Unfortunately, as we saw last week, this is the kind of injury that can become a problem at any given time. So if plan on starting him this week realize that you are taking a calculated risk.

Chester Taylor, RB, MIN
Sprained Wrist

Huddle Up: Vikings' RB Chester Taylor is listed as questionable on the team's official injury report for Week 13 with a sprained wrist but according to head coach Brad Childress he has improved and he should be ready for Sunday's game. Taylor apparently injured his wrist last week against the Cardinals and it didn't appear to be a problem immediately after the game. He reportedly began to complain of pain on Monday but the injury doesn't appear to be serious and the medical staff is just keeping him sidelined as a precaution. Childress expects Taylor to return to practice today (Friday) and if he does he will be back in the starting lineup for the Vikings.

Hines Ward, WR, PIT
Fractured Knee

Huddle Up: Steelers' WR Hines Ward, who recently underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair the damage to his fractured knee, will not play in Week 13 and according to reports he will miss at least two more weeks while he recovers. Ward initially injured his knee back in Week 11 and aggravated the problem last week against the Ravens. Ward is not expected to start practicing until next week and he probably won't take part in team drills for at least two weeks. Nate Washington will move into the starting lineup will Ward is out.

Jermaine Wiggins, TE, MIN
Sprained MCL

Huddle Up: Jermaine Wiggins suffered a minor MCL sprain in last week's game and according to reports there is a chance that he will be able to play this weekend against the Bears. Wiggins missed practice on Wednesday and was limited to individual drills in practice on Thursday. Head coach Brad Childress told reporters that Wiggins would attempt to practice with the team the today (Friday). But the medical staff isn't sure if he's ready to take part in team drills. If he doesn't take part in full practice today there is no reason to believe that he will be ready to play on Sunday. Check back with The Huddle on gameday for an update.