Wednesday, November 14, 2012
NFC West: Injury situations that matter
By Mike Sando
Arizona Cardinals: Running back Beanie Wells continues to practice in anticipation of his return from a toe injury for the Nov. 25 game against St. Louis. He will not play against the Atlanta Falcons this week. It's looking very likely that John Skelton will remain the starting quarterback while Kevin Kolb continues his recovery from a sternoclavicular injury. Kolb is not yet practicing. Defensive end Calais Campbell missed practice with a calf injury suffered before the bye. Guard Adam Snyder (quadriceps) and tight end Todd Heap (knee) were among the notable players limited in practice. Heap's situation is of heightened interested amid indications coach Ken Whisenhunt expected him to return long ago.
St. Louis Rams: The Rams are about as healthy as they've been all season. Receiver Austin Pettis (toe), defensive end Eugene Sims (knee) and safety Darian Stewart (knee) were limited in practice Wednesday. Receiver Danny Amendola and left tackle Rodger Saffold made it through the game against San Francisco without complication. Both were returning from extended injury layoffs. Center Scott Wells is practicing but has not yet been activated from the physically unable to perform list. Coach Jeff Fisher was vague when asked whether or not Wells might make his regular-season Rams debut Sunday. Wells will return either this week or next.
San Francisco 49ers: Quarterback Alex Smith practiced with the team Wednesday after clearing initial tests. He said the concussion suffered Sunday was much worse than the one he suffered against Dallas in Week 2 last season. Early indications suggest Smith will play against Chicago on Monday night. Having an additional 28 hours til kickoff should only help. The final verdict depends upon how Smith fares during the week. The 49ers otherwise appear to be mostly healthy. Guard Mike Iupati briefly left the St. Louis game with an apparent leg injury, but he returned. Running back Frank Gore has been beat up since suffering injured ribs against Seattle, but he continues to play well.
Seattle Seahawks: The bye week gives guard James Carpenter and linebacker K.J. Wright additional time to recover from their concussions. Center Max Unger, safety Kam Chancellor, receiver Doug Baldwin, defensive tackle Jason Jones, running back Marshawn Lynch, defensive end Red Bryant and defensive tackle Clinton McDonald all appeared on injury reports recently. They'll benefit from the down time as well. One question is whether or not cornerback Walter Thurmond will emerge from the bye as a contributor in the secondary. Veteran Marcus Trufant has been the nickel corner to this point. Thurmond was activated from the PUP list before the bye. He has not yet played, however.