Compared to the aftermath of most weeks so far this NFL season, the injury fallout from Week 11 is somewhat less dramatic. Of course, the players who sustained injuries over the past few days may not feel the same way, but in terms of sheer numbers, it appeared to be a relatively light week.
Here are several names to keep an eye on this week, as all of these players are bound to make an appearance on the injury report, even if they miss little to no playing time.
Though Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning managed to get through the entire game on Sunday night, one of his favorite targets, wide receiver Wes Welker, suffered a concussion. Welker will go through the standard post-concussion evaluation and gradual return to activity process throughout the week, symptoms permitting. As of now, the Broncos have not ruled him out for next week’s game against his former team, the Patriots. Interim coach Jack Del Rio summed up Welker’s situation this way: “First concern obviously is that he's ready to return when doctors give him the green light," Del Rio said. "When he's able to go, he'll go." Broncos TE Julius Thomas injured his knee in Sunday’s win but appears to have escaped anything major, despite what looked to be a hyperextension mechanism. According to Del Rio, Thomas is considered day-to-day.
Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was less than 100 percent healthy on Sunday -- and it showed. Peterson told reporters that his groin was bothering him “a lot,” and coach Leslie Frazier acknowledged that it affected Peterson’s performance. Peterson is not one to miss games very often, but it wouldn’t be surprising if he were to miss some practice this week.
Saints running back Darren Sproles exited Sunday’s game with an ankle injury but later returned. The Saints have a short week with a Thursday night game, so expect Sproles to be limited in practice until then. So far there is no indication that he will miss the game.
Redskins tight end Jordan Reed’s Week 11 game was cut short (just one reception for 12 yards) when he sustained a concussion. Like Welker, Reed will be on a graded return to activity protocol, but he has one extra day to complete it given that Washington doesn’t play until Monday night. Washington wide receiver Leonard Hankerson suffered a lateral collateral ligament injury and the Redskins’ official Twitter feed reported that surgery is being considered. Teammate and fellow WR Pierre Garcon had significant ankle pain following the Week 11 game, according to ESPN.com’s John Keim. Garcon will likely get plenty of rest in the hopes of preserving him for a Monday night outing against the 49ers.
Chargers rookie wide receiver Keenan Allen, who has been a nice addition for fantasy owners this year, left Sunday’s game early with a knee injury. Some may remember Allen’s collegiate career at Cal ended when he sprained his PCL, symptoms of which lingered into the spring and perhaps impacted his NFL draft stock. So far he’s been impressive and has showed no signs that the PCL injury has slowed him down. And the good news is that this latest injury is to his opposite (right) knee. The better news is that coach Mike McCoy has already indicated that he believes Allen will be fine and expects him to play this week.
Detroit running back Joique Bell left Sunday’s game in the second half with an ankle injury. ESPN.com’s Michael Rothstein notes that coach Jim Schwartz said Bell could have returned to the game, if necessary, which bodes well heading into Week 12. Bell, who has been a solid complement to Reggie Bush in the Lions’ backfield, said he has been dealing with tendinitis in his lower right leg for several weeks and the pain was exacerbated during the game, according to MLive.com. Expect Bell to be limited in practice early in the week but his outlook for Sunday is encouraging.