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2009 Training Camp Injury Report
Philip Gentles
August 7, 2009
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QUARTERBACKS

Tarvaris Jackson, MIN – Sprained MCL

Vikings’ QB Tarvaris Jackson is already back on the practice field after suffering a grade 1 medial collateral ligament sprain in his left knee during practice last Saturday. Jackson, who was hurt when he tripped on a defender during a passing drill, underwent an MRI and it revealed minor damage to his MCL. Jackson was held out of practice for only a couple of days and he was back on the field on Wednesday. He has been fitted for a knee brace and he admitted that he wouldn’t be 100% for at least another two weeks. But the fact that he’s already taking snaps with the first-team offense indicates that his knee is holding up well. Jackson missed two pre-season games last year after spraining the same ligament in his right knee, but it looks like he will be 100% in time for the team’s first exhibition game this year.

RUNNING BACKS

Reggie Bush, NO – Recovering from Microfracture Knee Surgery

Team officials said prior to the start of training camp that RB Reggie Bush was fully recovered from microfracture knee surgery. Unfortunately it looks like his knee is still an issue and there is no way of knowing if or when he will be completely healthy  According to reports Bush has been dealing with swelling in his surgically repaired knee since the start of training camp. He was making it through practices (on a limited basis) until Wednesday when he left practice after experiencing discomfort in his ailing joint. Bush limped off the field and he was later seen with his knee wrapped and iced. He apparently practiced in full on Wednesday evening and he downplayed reports that he had suffered a setback. He’ll continue to be limited in practice and although he says that his knee is “fine,” the fact that his knee is still swelling even though he is being limited is definitely cause for concern. We will keep you posted.

Tashard Choice, DAL – Undisclosed Shoulder Injury

Cowboys’ RB Tashard Choice, who suffered an undisclosed shoulder injury during practice on Wednesday, appears to be OK and he should be ready for the team’s first pre-season game. Choice complained of serious pain in his shoulder on Wednesday, however an MRI on Thursday showed that there was no structural damage. According to reports Choice will probably be held out of contact drills for the next couple of practices as a precaution. But it looks like he avoided serious injury.

Derrick Ward, TB – Sprained Foot

Bucs’ head coach Raheem Morris told reporters on Thursday that RB Derrick Ward is dealing with a minor foot sprain and that he didn’t expect Ward to be out for very long. It isn’t clear when or how he was hurt, but he was spotted wearing a walking boot on his injured foot on Wednesday evening. Morris said that Ward is wearing the boot as a precaution. Ward is being listed as “day-to-day” and there is a good chance that he could return to practice early next week.

Chris Wells, ARI – Sprained Ankle

Cardinals’ rookie RB Chris “Beanie” Wells, who sprained his right ankle during practice about a week ago, is still recovering from the injury and it looks like he won’t be ready in time for the team’s first pre-season game. Wells has spent a lot of time in the training room this week getting treatment and working on his strength and stability. Head coach Ken Whisenhunt told reporters that there is a chance that he could practice on a limited basis at some point next week. However he indicated that the team does not want to rush him back and he could miss at least one pre-season game. Tim Hightower will continue to take snaps with the first-team offense and he will likely open the regular season in the starting lineup.

Brian Westbrook, PHI – Ankle Surgery

The recovery of RB Brian Westbrook continues to go well. Westbrook, who has been out while recovering from ankle surgery, is running, jumping and cutting at full speed and head coach Andy Reid is confident that he will be 100% in time for the start of the regular season. Westbrook has not been cleared to practice with the team but he has looked great practicing on his own. In fact Reid told reporters that Westbrook appeared “uninhibited” while working with trainers and team officials believe that he could be allowed to participate in team drills as early as next week. Westbrook will probably be held out of all of the team’s pre-season games as a precaution with the goal for him to be ready for Week 1.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Mark Clayton, BAL – Hamstring Strain

Ravens’ WR Mark Clayton will miss about 4 weeks after straining his hamstring during practice last Sunday. Clayton appeared to pull his hamstring while running and had to be carted off the field. During a recent interview Clayton said that his muscle isn’t torn but head coach John Harbaugh indicated that the hamstring was inflamed and that there was some significant bleeding within the muscle tissue. There were reports that he could miss the entire pre-season but it looks like he will be back in time for at least one exhibition game and Harbaugh is confident that he will be healthy for the start of the regular season. Teammate Demetrius Williams, who also pulled his hamstring last Sunday, is reportedly feeling a lot better and he should be fine for the team’s first pre-season game.

Harry Douglas, ATL – Torn ACL

Falcons’ WR/KR Harry Douglas will miss the entire 2009 season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his knee during practice on Wednesday. According to reports Douglas went down awkwardly and several teammates said that they new right away that he was in trouble. Team physicians will wait until the swelling in his knee has been controlled and reduced before they operate. But if all goes well with the surgery Douglas should be back on the field in time for minicamps next year. Douglas was going to be a big part of the team’s passing attack this season serving as a possession receiver and inside threat. So with him out for the year the Falcons are now scrambling to replace him.

Braylon Edwards, CLE – Sprained Ankle

Browns’ WR Braylon Edwards, who missed the first 6 training camp practices with a sprained ankle, finally passed a physical this week and he was back on the field with teammates on Wednesday. Edwards reportedly injured his ankle during a pickup basketball game in July and he subsequently failed a physical before the start of training camp. There was speculation that Edwards was faking the injury as way to miss practice and not be fined. But he has said on a number of occasions that his injury was legitimate and that it was not related to his reported contract dispute. In his first practice back Edwards apparently looked great catching every pass thrown his way. Head coach Eric Mangini has said that Edwards sits in the front of the room during film sessions and that he has been impressed with how much of the offense he has picked up. Edwards’ ankle is no longer an issue and he appears to be focused on football. He could end up having a big bounce-back year in 2009.

Brandon Marshall, DEN – Lingering Hip Soreness

Broncos’ WR Brandon Marshall hasn’t practiced since aggravating his surgically repaired hip last weekend and it looks like he will not play in the team’s opening exhibition game. Marshall, who was dealing with soreness in his hip prior to the start of training camp, took part in practice on July 31st and he reportedly impressed the coaching staff. Unfortunately he limped off the field on Sunday holding his hip and the medical staff confirmed that he was experiencing soreness and discomfort in the joint. He remains out and there is a good chance that he will be held out of next week’s pre-season game even if he returns to practice before then. Marshall continues to say that he will be ready for the regular season, but the longer his hip remains an issue is the riskier it gets to draft him. This is something we will keep a close eye.

Santana Moss, WAS – Strained Hamstring

Redskins’ WR Santana Moss suffered what is being described as a slight hamstring tweak during practice on Thursday and while the injury doesn’t appear to be serious the team doesn’t know when he will return to practice. Moss, who has a long history of hamstring issues, was seen wearing an ice bag and limping in the locker room after practice. The early word is that the injury is minor, but Moss has dealt with “minor” hamstring issues before and they have had a tendency to become lingering problems. He’ll likely miss the next couple of practices as a precaution. Check back next week for an update on his status.

TIGHT ENDS

Reggie Kelly, CIN – Ruptured Achilles’ Tendon

Bengals’ TE Reggie Kelly will miss the entire 2009 season after rupturing the Achilles’ tendon in his foot during practice on Sunday. He underwent corrective surgery on Tuesday and he has since been placed on Injured Reserve. According to reports Kelly’s surgery went well and team officials expect him to be ready for the team’s off-season conditioning program next year. Kelly was considered the team’s best blocking TE and the players behind him on the depth chart (Ben Utecht and rookie Chase Coffman) are primarily receiving tight ends. Daniel Coats is a decent blocker and he’ll have a chance to earn playing time with Kelly out for the year. 

Heath Miller, PIT – Recovering from Sports’ Hernia Surgery

Steelers’ head coach Mike Tomlin told reporters at the beginning of training camp that starting TE Heath Miller will be limited for at least the first two weeks as he continues to recovery from Sports Hernia surgery. Miller apparently had surgery in June to repair a lingering groin problem and although he has been cleared to take part in team drills he isn’t back to full strength yet and he will remain limited in practice until he is. Miller might miss the team’s first two pre-season games but Tomlin expects him to be play in at least one exhibition game and be ready for the start of the regular season.

Ben Utecht, CIN – Concussion

Bengals’ TE Ben Utecht spent Wednesday night in the hospital after suffering a concussion during practice earlier in the day. He has since been released but it looks like Utecht will be out for at least a week while he recovers. Utecht was secured to a spine board and carted off the field after being hit during Wednesday’s practice. The injury isn’t considered severe, but he was reportedly feeling dizzy and complained of a headache on Thursday. He’ll be out a minimum of a week and with his history of concussions it appears that the team is prepared to keep him out a lot longer than that. Reggie Kelly is already finished for the season so with Utecht on the sideline look for rookie Chase Coffman to get a lot of snaps with the first-team offense.

Related Articles

* Off-Season Injury Reports
* Ease of Schedule for Quarterbacks
* Ease of Schedule for Running Backs
* Ease of Schedule for Receivers
* Better Than Average Rankings
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