The Training Room: Week 4 Injury Updates

The Training Room: Week 4 Injury Updates

By Russell Manalastas (Injury Expert), last updated Sep 24, 2013

Russ Manalastas's picture

Russ is a Board Certified Sports Physical Therapist and Clinical Director at Lattimore Physical Therapy in Rochester, NY. He has a Doctorate in Physical Therapy from the University at Buffalo as well as his Bachelors Degree in Exercise Science. His board certification credentials in sports is what is required for PT's that work at the NFL level. Russ provides a unique perspective on NFL injuries as they relate to fantasy football.

Follow Russell on Twitter: @russmanalastas.

As the NFL heads into week 4, injuries to big names continue to flood the training room. We are starting to see some re-occurring injuries that will only continue to happen as the season wears on, as players bodies are already starting to show the effects of this brutal game. Let's get you up to speed on some names that you'll want to know about heading into this week.


Andre Johnson

Bruised Shin - direct trauma to the shin area can lead to immediate swelling and inflammation which causes pain.

Johnson was unable to return to the game after he suffered the injury. X-rays came back negative so Johnson is considered day-to-day.

Bottom Line - Johnson's production can never be questioned, it's his health that leaves much more to be desired. If the swelling and pain don't subside quick enough, and he's unable to practice later this week, I can see Johnson missing this upcoming game if . (Think Reggie Bush, who was dealing with a similar situation this week)


Miles Austin

Hamstring Strain - The hamstring is the main muscle in the back of the thigh which is responsible for bending the knee and extending the hip. When it relates to sports, it's a very important muscle to help accelerate/decelerate the lower body to allow proper running and cutting.

Bottom Line - We all saw this coming, right? It was only a matter of time before Austin's balky hamstrings acted up on him again, so this shouldn't be surprising. Coach Garrett said Austin could've returned if it was a closer game so it sounds like a grade 1 strain. Grade 1 strains take about a week to recover, but always understand his risk for re-injury is significantly higher than most players because of his past history.


Chris Ivory

Hamstring Strain - See Miles Austin

Ivory was taken out of the game and was unable to return after trying to test out his leg.

Bottom Line - Ivory dealt with this issue in training camp, and as we've seen with other players in this column, there is a high occurrence of re-injuring your hamstring. The issue is in a different area of the muscle, which is common as the hamstring will strain in other areas to compensate for lack of strength/stability in the original injury site. It seems like Ivory is dealing with at least a grade 2 strain which can take 3-4 weeks to recover, if not longer. His recovery will likely take longer than the normal timetable based on his slow recovery from past injuries and now re-aggravating this injury. Pick up Bilal Powell as he will see a big workload increase with Ivory sidelined. Mike Goodson is also due back from suspension next week and should be in the mix.


CJ Spiller

Quad Strain - Your quadricep muscle is the main muscle in the front of your thigh. Its main jobs are to help straighten the knee and help decelerate/accelerate the knee when trying to run/cut.

Initial reports were that Spiller suffered an injury to his knee, but reports today are that he sustained an injury to his thigh.

Bottom Line - Spiller has yet to find a groove this season, and this injury will not help make owners feel any better about using a high draft pick on him. Fred Jackson has shown he's still got some gas left in the tank, which cuts into Spiller's value a bit more. The Bills don't seem to be too concerned about his injury, so it seems to be a low grade strain. Jamaal Charles was able to come back the following week after this same type of injury, so I would expect the same from Spiller. He might be a good buy low candidate from a frustrated owner, but now would be the time to make that happen before he finally gets it together.


Daryl Richardson

Foot Sprain -  The main role of the foot is to help dissipate forces as you put weight through it. There are many ligaments that help stabilize the bones of the foot. With repetitive load to those ligaments, the ligaments can break down and cause pain, which makes it difficult to push off the foot.

Richardson states that he re-aggravated his foot injury the first play of the game when someone stepped on his foot.

Bottom Line - foot issues are never good for a running back, especially when there are other backs looking to take your job. Richardson states he'll be ready to suit up for Thursday's game against the 49ers but he's a big question mark. Going out of the game completely after just one play doesn't give owners confidence he'll play through pain. Look to make sure he's practicing fully this week before feeling confident plugging him in on Thursday.


Vincent Jackson

Rib Injury - No further information was given on the type of injury Jackson sustained.

Jackson left the game in the 3rd quarter after taking a hit to the ribs. He has gone through a battery of tests but results have not been revealed yet. Jackson is considered day-to-day.

Bottom Line - Keep an eye on Jackson's practice status midweek to get a better idea of what his status could be for Sunday. I believe he won't miss any time, but everything needs to check out first before declaring him ready to go. He will most likely wear some protective gear around the rib injury to prevent it from getting worse moving forward.


James Starks

Sprained Knee - A sprain refers to the ligaments in the knee being overstretched which causes pain. There were no specific reports as to what ligament Starks might have sprained.

Starks left the game after his knee twisted the wrong way. He received an MRI Monday but results haven't been revealed yet.

Bottom Line - It seems as if no one wants the starting running back gig in Green Bay due to everyone getting hurt. Luckily the Packers have a BYE this week to get healthy. Even if Starks returns to 100%, he'll likely hold just handcuff value as Eddy Lacy is set to return from his concussion after this week's BYE.


Filed Under: w4, 2013

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