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Early Injury Report - Week 4
Philip Gentles
September 23, 2008
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QUARTERBACKS

Jon Kitna, DET - Sprained Knee

According to reports Lions' QB Jon Kitna sprained an undisclosed ligament in his right knee during Sunday's game against the 49ers and his status for their next game is in question. Kitna injured his knee when he was sacked late in the fourth quarter. He limped to the sideline then fell to the turf where he was examined by the medical staff. He did not return to the game and he was later seen with his knee wrapped. Kitna told reporters late Sunday that he had sprained a ligament in his knee and although he was scheduled to undergo an MRI on Monday the results have not been made public. Kitna mentioned that his knee felt "pretty bad" but said that the medical staff does not believe that his injury is serious. Head coach Rod Marinelli did not say how much practice time he will miss, but the Lions are heading into their Week 4 bye so he will have an additional week to rest and recover. He hasn't played well this year so there is chance he could be replaced in the starting lineup even if he is healthy.

Donovan McNabb, PHI - Bruised Chest

Eagles' QB Donovan McNabb should be fine and ready to play next weekend after an X-ray an additional testing revealed that his chest injury was just a bruise. McNabb, who was hurt late in the first quarter, stayed in the locker room until the start of the second half and he was finally allowed to return. He admitted that he was having trouble breathing but he stayed in the game and made it to the end. Head coach Andy Reid told reporters on Monday that the injury was just a "contusion on his upper chest" and he indicated that McNabb should be ready for Week 4 action.

Ben Roethlisberger, PIT - Bruised Hand

The Steelers received good news regarding QB Ben Roethlisberger's injured hand on Monday. He was hurt when he was sacked late in the fourth quarter. He was escorted to the locker room where he was examined. He quickly came back out but he did not return to the field. According to reports X-rays on Roethlisberger's hand were negative and it appears that the injury is a bruise. He was scheduled to undergo additional testing on Monday but the results have not been made public. It appears that Roethlisberger could be limited in practice this week but at this point it looks like he will be fine for Monday night's game against the Ravens.

RUNNING BACKS

Willis McGahee, BAL - Eye Inflammation

Ravens' RB Willis McGahee, who left Sunday's game after being accidentally poked in the eye, reported to the team's training facility on Monday complaining of discomfort and inflammation and his status for Week 4 is uncertain. McGahee's eye was so swollen that the team's medical staff feared that it could affect his vision. Head coach John Harbaugh told reporters that "He's got work to do to get that (his eye) down." I can't imagine that the medical staff will allow him to practice if his eye is still swollen so don't be surprised if he is held out until Thursday or Friday.

Willie Parker, PIT - Knee Sprain

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin announced during Tuesday's news conference that RB Willie Parker suffered a sprained left knee late in the game against Philadelphia. He also stated that Parker would definitely miss the week 4 matchup with Baltimore, but didn't provide any additional prognosis. Initial indications are that the injury isn't sever and odds are good that Parker will not miss significant time. With a week 6 bye coming up, don't be surprised if they hold him out for the next two games and he returns to action in week 7.

Antonio Pittman, STL - Fractured Fibula

Rams' RB Antonio Pittman will miss the next 4 - 6 weeks after fracturing his fibula during Sunday's game. Pittman, who was hurt when his ankle got caught and his leg twisted awkwardly during the team's first special teams play. Head coach Scott Linehan said that X-rays revealed a "small crack" in his fibula that would not require surgery. But he indicated that Pittman would be out until at least Week 7. He'll probably wear a cast for 3 - 4 weeks and there is a chance that the team will want him to practice for at least a week before they allow him to return.

Jonathan Stewart, CAR - Wind Knocked out of Him

It appeared that Panthers' rookie RB Jonathan Stewart suffered an injury when he left the field holding his arm in the third quarter after a long kickoff return. But according to reports Stewart simply had the wind knocked out of him and he was able to return to the field and finish the game. Stewart said that he was hit hard at the end of a kick off return and mentioned that he was having trouble breathing. He was able to recover on the sideline and he later returned to the field. Stewart will not missing practice time because of this and he should be fine for the team's Week 4 game.

Brian Westbrook, PHI - Ankle Strain

Eagles' RB Brian Westbrook, who left Sunday's game with an ankle injury, has been diagnosed with a muscle strain and there is a chance that he will be ready to play in Week 4. Westbrook was hurt when he stepped on the leg of a teammate during a run in the first half. The instant replay showed that he twisted his ankle and he was eventually taken to the locker room for X-rays and an examination. X-rays were negative but he did not return to the game. The injury was initially being called a ligament sprain but according to reports an MRI on his leg revealed a muscle/tendon strain. Head coach Andy Reid said that Westbrook is "day-to-day" and said that it would "be a race to get him ready for Sunday." Reid indicated that Westbrook would probably miss practice time this week, but remained hopeful that he would be healthy enough to face the Bears on Sunday night. We will keep you posted.

WIDE RECEIVERS

David Patten, NO - Strained Groin

Saints' WR David Patten strained his groin during Sunday's game against the Broncos and his status for Week 4 is questionable. Patten pulled his groin running a route during the game and he did not return. He was seen icing his groin area in the locker room after the game and according to reports his leg was feeling stiff and sore on Monday. Patten will likely be held out of practice until at least Thursday, but at this point team officials aren't sure if he will be healthy enough to play against the 49ers in Week 4.

TIGHT ENDS

Dallas Clark, IND - Minor Head Trauma / Slightly Torn MCL

Colts' TE Dallas Clark left Sunday's game after getting shaken up on a helmet-to-helmet hit in the second half but he was able to return to the field after several minutes and finish the game. Team officials are not concerned about Clark's injury as it is not being classified as a concussion. In fact they are more concerned about his knee, but that appears to be OK. It was revealed this weekend that Clark partially tore the medial collateral ligament in his knee. However he was cleared to play in Week 3 and head coach Tony Dungy indicated that Clark's knee shouldn't affect his performance on the field. Clark might be limited in practice this week as a precaution, but he should be back on the starting lineup for the Colts in Week 5 following their bye.

Jeremy Shockey, NO - Sports Hernia Surgery

Saints' TE Jeremy Shockey will be out until at least Week 6 as he is scheduled to undergo sports hernia surgery sometime this week. According to reports Shockey suffered a sports hernia earlier in the regular season and he aggravated the problem during Sunday's game. He reportedly complained of pain in his groin and lower abdomen following Sunday's game and after an examination the medical staff decided it was best that they correct the problem now. There is a chance that the team could keep him out until after their Week 9 bye, but that will depend on how quickly he recovers after surgery.

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