Week 15 NFL Injury Recap

injured players list for upcoming week 16 NFL news

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We’re in the midst of Week 15 as positive COVID tests moved two games into Tuesday night. It’s never too early to look at the injuries from recent games and how they figure to affect teams for the final three games of the season.

Chris Godwin – ACL Tear

In Sunday night’s shutout loss to the Saints, it was a scary scene for Buccaneers’ wide receiver Chris Godwin. He was hit in the knee and dumped awkwardly on his head and neck. Luckily his head and neck were fine, but his knee was not. An MRI Monday revealed that his right ACL was torn, resulting in season-ending surgery.

Godwin has been Tom Brady’s favorite target this season, catching 98 passes for 1,103 yards

Mike Evans – Hamstring

Godwin wasn’t the only Tampa Bay receiver to leave Sunday night with an injury. Mike Evans suffered a hamstring strain, but it’s not considered to be that serious. He is listed as week-to-week and could play in Week 16 Sunday at Carolina. Regardless, the Bucs are double-digit favorites against the Panthers according to the BetUS Sportsbook NFL point spread odds.

Leonard Fournette – Hamstring

The hamstring injury suffered by Bucs running back Leonard Fournette appears to be slightly worse than the hamstring injury to Evans. Fournette is going to miss Tampa Bay’s game at Carolina, perhaps even more.

When Fournette returns depends not only onv how well he’s healed, but how important the remaining regular-season games are for playoff seeding. As head coach Bruce Arians said Monday, “it’s [Ronald] Jones time now.”

Joe Mixon – Ankle

In the Bengals’ 15-10 road win over the Denver Broncos, running back Joe Mixon left the game with what head coach Zac Taylor called a sprained ankle. It’s not a high-ankle sprain and Taylor is optimistic that Mixon would be available for Sunday’s big divisional game with the Baltimore Ravens. The teams meet at Cincinnati with identical 8-6 records, tied for first place in the AFC North.

Early NFL odds on that game show the Bengals as 2½-point home favorites over the Ravens.

Teddy Bridgewater – Concussion

The injury that led to Broncos’ quarterback Teddy Bridgewater being removed from the field and strapped to a backboard was fortunately not spinal-related. After one night in a local hospital, he was and entered the NFL’s concussion protocol.

The news is good, considering the frightening sight of him having his face mask removed while he was laying on the field. However, this is Bridgewater’s second concussion of the season (third of his career) and with the Broncos looking outside at the playoff picture, it may be time for Drew Lock to start.

Donald Parham Jr. – Concussion

Chargers’ tight end Donald Parham Jr. was also strapped to a backboard and had his facemask removed after suffering an injury Thursday night against the Chiefs. He was also taken to a hospital with a concussion and released the next day. His availability for the LA’s game at Houston Sunday has not been determined.

Pat Freiermuth – Concussion

Excellent rookie tight end Pat Freiermuth left Sunday’s game with Tennessee, also with a concussion, He’s in the NFL’s concussion protocol this week prior to Pittsburgh’s visit to Kansas City. His status for that game is unknown until later in the week.

This is particularly concerning for Freiermuth, as he was just in that same protocol three weeks ago following the Steelers’ loss to the Bengals. He didn’t miss any games because of that, but with a second concussion in three weeks, doctors may be more cautious this time.

Sterling Shepard – Achilles

Giants’ wide receiver Sterling Shepard is done for the season after suffering a torn Achilles tendon in Sunday’s loss against the Cowboys. Shepard missed seven games earlier this season (hamstring and quad).

Shepard is a free agent after this season and is looking at between six and nine months for a full recovery.

In unrelated news, the Giants have also placed quarterback Daniel Jones on injured reserve, ending his season. Jones had already missed the last three games because of a neck injury, and with the Giants again going nowhere, the team decided to shut him down.