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FANTASY FOOTBALL IN-SEASON FEATURES

Early Injury Report - Week 7
Philip Gentles
October 14, 2008
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QUARTERBACKS

Matt Hasselbeck, SEA - Bulging Disc in Lumbar Spine

Seahawks' QB Matt Hasselbeck, who was inactive for Sunday's game with a knee problem, will be out at least one more week after tests revealed that he is suffering from a bulging disc in his lower back. Hasselbeck told reporters that he initially injured his back during training camp and aggravated it when he was hit several weeks ago. According to reports the bulging disc is pressing against a nerve that runs down into his troublesome knee. Team officials said that Hasselbeck hyperextended his knee and Hasselbeck himself said last week that he was suffering from a bone bruise. But it turns out that the compressed nerve in his lower back was causing instability and weakness in the joint. Head coach Mike Holmgren confirmed on Monday that Hasselbeck would not play in Week 7. The Seahawks' QB is currently undergoing treatment and rehab and the medical staff hopes that he will be back on the field in time for Week 8. Charlie Frye will once again start with Hasselbeck out.

Carson Palmer, CIN - Elbow Inflammation

Carson Palmer owners received a bit of good news on Monday evening. According to reports Palmer will not need Tommy John surgery to repair the damage in his inflamed elbow. However he did visit with the New York Mets' team doctor and the team isn't sure when he will be healthy enough to return to the starting lineup. Palmer will reportedly miss Week 7 and head coach Marvin Lewis indicated that he could be out longer. Lewis said that Palmer recently underwent additional testing and while he did not release the results he did say that they revealed something that needed to be looked at closer. The current plan is to rest Palmer and hope that treatment and conventional rehab take care of the problem. But there is a good amount of uncertainty regarding the injury and it looks like they will continue to deal with it on a day-to-day basis. Ryan Fitzpatrick will start in Week 7 against the Steelers.

Tony Romo, DAL - Fractured Pinkie Finger

Cowboys' QB Tony Romo did not look good throwing the ball in overtime on Sunday against the Cardinals, and as it turns out he had a good excuse. According to reports Romo fractured the pinkie finger on his throwing hand when he was sacked early in overtime and he will be out up to 4 weeks. Romo, who fumbled on the play on which he was hurt, was able to recover the ball and he stayed in the game but his next two throws weren't close to their intended receivers. An X-ray in the locker room after the game revealed a break in his pinkie finger and while the injury will not require surgery it looks like be will miss the team's next three games. The Cowboys have their bye in Week 10 and the team is hoping that he will be back in the starting lineup by Week 11. Romo was understandably disappointed with the diagnosis but he was reportedly feeling better on Monday evening and he said that he would do everything he could to return as soon as possible. Brad Johnson will start in his place.

RUNNING BACKS

Joseph Addai, IND - Strained Hamstring

Colts' RB Joseph Addai left Sunday's game with a strained hamstring, however head coach Tony Dungy told reporters that he expected him to be "OK." Addai, who apparently hurt his hamstring during practice last week, aggravated his leg on a carry in the first quarter. He limped to the sideline and was examined by the medical staff on the sideline. He was eventually escorted back to the locker room and he did not return to the game. According to reports Addai was feeling sore on Monday but Dungy said that the injury wasn't serious and he expected him to make a quick recovery. His status for Week 7 has not been announced but we should know about his recovery after practice on Wednesday.

Ladell Betts, WAS - Sprained Knee

Redskins' head coach Jim Zorn told reporters on Monday that backup RB Ladell Betts, who left Sunday's game with a knee injury, suffered knee sprain and it looks like he will be out at least two weeks. Betts was scheduled to undergo an MRI on his knee on Monday, but the results have not been released. Zorn indicated that the injury was not as severe as the medical staff had initially feared however there are reports that the Redskins plan on bringing free agent RB Shaun Alexander in for a workout. We should know more about the severity of Betts' injury on Friday so check back then for an update.

Felix Jones, DAL - Partially Torn Hamstring

Cowboys' rookie RB Felix Jones will miss at least two weeks after he partially tore his hamstring during Sunday's loss to the Cardinals. Jones said he felt his hamstring tighten up while he ran during a play in third quarter. A team trainer tried stretching him on the sideline but his leg wouldn't loosen up. He was seen limping around the locker room after the game. According to reports an MRI on his hamstring revealed a partial tear in the muscle and the medical staff believes that he will be out until at least Week 8 and possibly out until after the team's Week 10 bye. Tashard Choice will replace Jones on the team's depth chart.

Mike Hart, IND - Undisclosed Knee Injury

The exact nature of rookie RB Mike Hart's injured knee is currently unknown, however head coach Tony Dungy told reporters on Monday that an MRI revealed something "significant" and he said that Hart would be out for an extended period of time. Hart was injured when he took a helmet to his knee on a screen play in the second quarter of Sunday's game. Hart appeared to be in a lot of pain and he remained on the ground until he was helped off the field by the medical staff. Dungy has not said what the injury is, but he told reporters that he expected him to be out for a while. With Addai and Hart out Dominic Rhodes, who was recently resigned, was the Colts' featured back during their blowout over the Ravens.

Brian Leonard, STL - Torn Shoulder Ligaments and Muscles

The Rams have placed RB Brian Leonard on Injured Reserve after an MRI on his shoulder revealed several partial and complete ligament and muscle tears in his shoulder. Leonard reportedly dislocated his shoulder on a special teams play in the first half and while a team doctor was able to reduce it in the locker room he was in a lot of pain and unable to return. Head coach Jim Hasslett told reporters that the injured shoulder had bothered him throughout the preseason and said that the team considered postponing corrective surgery until after the season. But the decision was made to take care of the problem right now and he is scheduled to undergo surgery sometime this week. Hasslett said that Leonard should make a full recovery in time for the start of training camp next year.

Willis McGahee, BAL - Bruised Ribs

Ravens' RB Willis McGahee left Sunday's game against the Colts' with an undisclosed injury and he did not return. There is speculation that McGahee aggravated his bruised ribs however the team has not confirmed this. In fact they have yet to say why he left the game. McGahee has not spoken with reporters and we won't know his status for Week 7 until after practice on Wednesday. Rookie Ray Rice had most of carries in the second half in Week 6 and he will continue to see an increase in carries regardless of McGahee's health and status.

WIDE RECEIVERS

T.J. Houshmandzadeh, CIN - Sprained Ankle

According to reports Bengals' WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh briefly left Sunday's game after turning his ankle, but he quickly returned to the field and he was able to finish the game. Houshmandzadeh told reporters on Monday that his ankle was feeling a bit sore but that he expected to practice later on in the week. Head coach Marvin Lewis indicated that his injury was minor and team officials expect him to play in Week 7 against the Steelers. We'll keep an eye on his recovery this week, but if he takes part in a full practice on Friday then he should be good to go.

Calvin Johnson, DET - Possible Concussion / Eye Inflammation

Lions' WR Calvin Johnson left Sunday's game banged up and his status for Week 7 is currently unknown. Johnson took a helmet-to-helmet hit in the second half and while he was being examined on the sideline his left eye appeared to be swollen. Head coach Rod Marinelli told reporters that Johnson experienced "blurry vision" after the hit on Sunday that has lead to speculation that he may have suffered a concussion. Marinelli has not classified Johnson's injury as a concussion but he said that Johnson was be reevaluated on a daily basis and that his status for Week 7 would be determined later on in the week. According to reports Johnson said that he was feeling better on Monday and he expects to play this upcoming weekend. We will keep you posted.

Muhsin Muhammad, CAR - Sprained Knee

Panthers' veteran WR Muhsin Muhammad is day-to-day after suffering a minor left knee sprain during Sunday's loss to the Bucs. Muhammad apparently injured his knee at the end of a long reception in the second half and he limped off the field. He actually returned before the end of the game but he wasn't moving comfortably and he did not have a catch after coming back. According to reports Muhammad's injury is not considered serious, but he will likely be limited in practice this week and his status for Week 7 is in question.

Brandon Stokley, DEN - Concussion

Broncos' WR Brandon Stokley left Sunday's game after suffering a concussion and his status for Week 7 is currently in doubt. Stokley, who has a history of severe concussions and head trauma, told reporters he was hurt on his first catch and that he didn't start to the feel the effects until later on in the game. Stokley said that he began to feel "foggy" after being hit in the back of the head on his last catch of the day. He said that he "lost equilibrium" while walking on the sideline shortly after the play. According to reports Stokley has suffered 9 concussions, including three severe ones, prior to Sunday's game and although he was feeling better on Monday there is a good chance that he will be held out of practice and this week's game because of his past history.

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