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Chargers RB Ryan Mathews suffers broken clavicle, out 4-6 weeks

By Will Brinson | NFL Writer
Mathews suffered a broken clavicle on his only carry of the night Thursday. (US Presswire)

Leading into the season, the Chargers expected running back Ryan Mathews to carry a huge workload in 2012. Those plans have likely changed as Mathews suffered a broken clavicle on Thursday night that will require him to have surgery and keep the running back out for four-to-six weeks.

The injury, per our Chargers Rapid Reporter Dan McLellan, will require surgery, with Mathews going under the knife on Friday.

"My hopes for Ryan [Mathews] have not changed," Norv Turner said, via Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune. "I still expect him to have a great year."

Mathews was injured on his only carry of the game -- a pitch right for five yards -- on a completely innocuous-looking play. He picked up his yardage, was tackled near the sideline by two Packers defenders, got up, rolled his shoulder a little bit and headed to the sideline. All the while, Jon Gruden was describing his potentially huge season that could be coming. And it's hard to blame Gruden -- a combination of Mathews being the only real workhorse back in San Diego, his strong finish to 2011, and Turner's propensity for running backs into the ground had him primed for a huge season.

Instead, the Chargers are now faced with a scenario that's going to involve Ronnie Brown as their primary back, along with Jackie Battle and Curtis Brinkley. It's a great running back situation suddenly turned quite somber.

And it also means that, once again, the Chargers could get off to a slow start to the season.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, subscribe to our RSS Feed and subscribe to our Pick-6 Podcast and NFL newsletter. You can follow Will Brinson on Twitter here: @willbrinson.

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