Wednesday, December 14, 2011
NFC West injury situations that matter
By Mike Sando
Arizona: Kevin Kolb's concussion symptoms have cleared, allowing him to resume practicing with the team Wednesday. Kolb told reporters he plans to take things slowly at first, adding reps each day before starting against Cleveland. This news was about as good as the Cardinals could have expected. The Cardinals are relatively healthy overall. Free safety Kerry Rhodes, recovered from a broken foot, is practicing without limitation. It's unclear how the Cardinals will work him back into the secondary rotation. Strong safety Adrian Wilson and the defense in general are playing better now than when Rhodes was injured. Several other players are working through nagging injuries, including Beanie Wells (knee) and Clark Haggans (hamstring).
St. Louis: Quarterback Sam Bradford played hurt Monday night and continues paying the price. He did not practice Wednesday and told reporters the situation had gotten worse. Bradford is back in a walking boot. The team placed fullback Brit Miller on injured reserve. Tackle Mark LeVoir, defensive end James Hall, defensive end Chris Long, cornerback Josh Gordy, safety Craig Dahl and defensive lineman Eugene Sims missed practice, as did Bradford and backup quarterback A.J. Feeley. Injuries are preventing a struggling team from competing for a full game. Defensive tackle Fred Robbins, sidelined by back trouble against Seattle, did return on a limited basis.
San Francisco: The 49ers do not play until Monday night, pushing back by one day the requirement for publishing an injury report. Left tackle Joe Staley (concussion) and linebacker Patrick Willis (hamstring) are the two most important players likely to appear on the injury report. Staley or backup left tackle Alex Boone will not have to face suspended Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker James Harrison. That will presumably help. Then again, the Steelers were 4-0 and had 13 sacks when Harrison missed four games earlier in the season. The team has not had more sacks in any four-game stretch. The season appears to be wearing on 49ers running back Frank Gore. His snaps were limited against Arizona and could be in the future.
Seattle: Linebacker Leroy Hill practiced fully Wednesday despite a neck injury, a good sign for Seattle given the team's depth issues at the position. Linebacker David Hawthorne rested his injured knee, no surprise. He's playing with an MCL injury that needs monitoring. Receiver Doug Baldwin (ankle), left guard Robert Gallery (hip), defensive end Raheem Brock (calf) and linebacker David Hawthorne (knee) did not practice. They were expected to play Sunday against the Chicago Bears. Quarterback Tarvaris Jackson remained a full participant in practice despite his pectoral injury. Jackson seems to be getting stronger.