Week 2 NFL injuries: Aaron Rodgers, Ben Roethlisberger miss practice while Marcus Mariota participates
Plus injury updates on Leonard Fournette, Davante Adams, Michael Thomas, Luke Kuechly, Rex Burkhead and more
All eyes are on several starting quarterbacks as the NFL moves into Week 2, with Packers great Aaron Rodgers overcoming a knee injury to lead his team to a comeback win over the Bears on Sunday night and multiple other starters dealing with injury concerns around the league.
Rodgers, who called his injury a "sprained knee" on Wednesday, was one of three Packers to miss practice as he tries to get ready for a monumental divisional matchup against the Vikings on Sunday. He says he doesn't need to practice to be available for that game. Top receiving option Davante Adams was also missing from practice due to a shoulder injury.
Ben Roethlisberger didn't practice on Wednesday as he recovers from an elbow injury, but he didn't sound concerned about the issue, saying that Wednesday could be a rest day during the season for him anyway. At this point he doesn't sound in danger of missing a big matchup against the Chiefs, but Steelers fans will certainly be glued to their injury reports over the rest of the week.
Marcus Mariota took several shots in Week 1 as the Titans suffered multiple key injuries on offense in the loss. However, Mariota was able to practice in full on Wednesday, putting him on track to be under center against the Texans in a huge game for both division rivals.
We'll update you on the initial injury reports around the league in this space as they become available, as well as discuss the final injury report for the Thursday night matchup between the Ravens and Bengals.
So who should you back in Week 1 of the NFL season? Visit SportsLine now to see which teams are winning more than 50 percent of simulations, all from the model that has outperformed 98 percent of experts tracked by NFLPickWatch.com the past two seasons.
Ravens at Bengals (PK)
- Ravens: RB Kenneth Dixon (knee), TE Hayden Hurst (foot), DT Willie Henry (abdomen), CB Maurice Canady (thigh) OUT; WR Janarion Grant (hand) QUESTIONABLE
- Bengals: WR Cody Core (back) DOUBTFUL; LB Preston Brown (ankle) QUESTIONABLE
The Ravens placed Dixon on injured reserve shortly after the final injury report came out, leaving their running game fully in the hands of Alex Collins and Buck Allen after Dixon saw plenty of work in mop-up duty last week. Hurst is still recovering from foot surgery, and even with his absence the Ravens featured tight ends in a key role in their passing game in Week 1. Henry remains out as he recovers from hernia surgery. Canady played a key role for the Ravens in Week 1 with Jimmy Smith serving his suspension, and the third-year player made five tackles in the win.
The Bengals could be down a key player on defense with Brown listed as questionable following two days of limited practices. If he can't go, the team would need to lean more on Hardy Nickerson, though third-round rookie Malik Jefferson could see his first action as well. Several key players were also on the final injury report on Wednesday, including Carlos Dunlap (calf), William Jackson (shoulder), Darqueze Dennard (neck) and three tight ends, including Tyler Eifert (back), but all practiced fully and avoided a final injury designation.
Wednesday practice report notes
Left tackle Anthony Castonzo was limited in Wednesday's session as he recovers from a hamstring injury that caused him to miss the opener. He said there's no question he'll be back for this game. Linemate Denzelle Good missed practice due to knee and wrist issues. Running back Marlon Mack (hamstring) joins Castonzo as one of five limited players on the injury report. Safety Troy Apke (hamstring) is the only player who didn't practice for the Redskins on Wednesday, though right tackle Morgan Moses (knee) was one of two players who were limited. Linebacker Zach Brown is dealing with an oblique injury but managed a full practice anyway.
Panthers fans got a scare when Luke Kuechly picked up a knee injury in Week 1, but the star linebacker practiced in full on Wednesday, putting him on track to play in this matchup. Guard Trai Turner is dealing with a concussion that caused him to miss practice, however, as the injuries pile up for the offensive line. Running back C.J. Anderson also missed practice due to illness. Running back Devonta Freeman missed Wednesday's practice as he deals with a knee injury. Tevin Coleman would likely play a huge role for the Falcons offense if Freeman can't go. Guard Ben Garland (calf) also didn't practice, while tight end Austin Hooper (knee) joined corners Isaiah Oliver (knee) and Brian Poole (knee) as limited. The Falcons will also be missing key defenders in linebacker Deion Jones and safety Keanu Neal after placing both players on IR this week.
Vikings at Packers (NL)
Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams were both missing from practice on Wednesday, and the Packers can ill afford to lose one or both in this matchup. Adams said he expects to play Sunday after injuring his shoulder on a long catch in Week 1. Safety Josh Jones also missed practice for the Packers. Center Pat Elflein is the only player who didn't practice in full for the Vikings, as he was limited with ankle and shoulder issues. That's good news for the Vikings, as corners Mackensie Alexander (ankle) and Trae Waynes (knee) were both able to practice in full.
Chargers pass rusher Joey Bosa was unable to practice Wednesday as he continues to deal with a foot injury. Joining him as missing practice were receiver Travis Benjamin (foot) and tackle Joe Barksdale (knee). The Bills didn't have Shaq Lawson at Wednesday's practice as he deals with a knee injury, and corner Taron Johnson was also out while nursing a shoulder injury. Kyle Williams and Lorenzo Alexander didn't practice either, but both were purely for rest purposes.
Texans (-1.5) at Titans
The Texans put a whopping nine players on the injury report as limited on Wednesday, with DeAndre Hopkins (foot) and Will Fuller (hamstring) among four receivers listed. Pass rusher Jadeveon Clowney is the key defender listed, as he was limited due to back and elbow issues. The big news for the Titans is that Marcus Mariota (elbow) practiced in full in the first session of the week, putting him on track to play in Week 2. Inside linebacker Rashaan Evans (hamstring) also practiced in full after missing Week 1. On the flip side, left tackle Taylor Lewan (concussion) and outside linebacker Harold Landry (ankle) both missed practice. The Titans also had four limited players, including receiver Corey Davis (hamstring), right tackle Jack Conklin (knee) and pass rusher Derrick Morgan (knee).
Chiefs at Steelers (-4)
Chiefs safety Eric Berry remained out of practice on Wednesday as he continued to recover from a heel injury. Ron Parker and Eric Murray served as the starting safeties in Week 1 and would do so again here if Berry can't go. The Steelers were missing five players from practice, including quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, but he said his bruised elbow "will be fine." Joe Haden wasn't at practice due to a hamstring injury, while guard David DeCastro is dealing with a hand fracture that he'll see if he can play through. Defensive lineman Cam Heyward (knee) and Tyson Alualu (shoulder) also missed practice, while tight end Vance McDonald practiced in full after missing Week 1.
Guard Josh Sitton was unable to practice for the Dolphins, putting his availability for this week into question. Receiver Danny Amendola also missed practice but not for injury reasons. Receiver Devante Parker was able to practice in a limited fashion as he recovers from a finger injury, and the offense would certainly welcome him back after having to use return man Jakeem Grant on 40 percent of its snaps last week. Both starting offensive tackles are dealing with hamstring issues but practiced in full. Three Jets missed practice, with linebacker Josh Martin (concussion) and defensive back Marcus Maye (foot) the names to know. Three receivers were on the initial injury report, but all of Quincy Enunwa (thumb), Terrelle Pryor (ankle) and Jermaine Kearse (abdomen) all practiced in full.
Carson Wentz was able to practice in limited fashion as he continues his recovery from knee surgery but still isn't cleared for contact. The team has already announced in this matchup. Alshon Jeffery remains limited by his shoulder injury, and Darren Sproles popped up as limited with a hamstring injury. With the Bucs' injury issues on defense, the matchup on this side of the ball could be a war of attrition. Corner Brent Grimes (groin) remained sidelined at practice, and with Vernon Hargreaves going on IR, the defense could be extremely shorthanded at the position in Week 2. Defensive linemen Jason Pierre-Paul (knee) and Vita Vea (calf) also missed practice, as did receiver DeSean Jackson (shoulder, concussion). Left tackle Donovan Smith was limited due to a knee issue.
Defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah missed Browns practice due to an ankle injury, and while coach Hue Jackson said Wednesday he avoided a high-ankle sprain, his availability for this game is certainly in question. Key linebacker Christian Kirksey was limited due to shoulder and ankle issues, and Jackson said he's hopeful Kirksey will play. Corner E.J. Gaines was also limited as the defense limps into a matchup with the high-powered New Orleans offense. The Saints were missing both starting receivers from practice on Wednesday, with Michael Thomas dealing with an illness and Ted Ginn nursing a knee injury. Offensive linemen Terron Armstead (knee) and Andrus Peat (ankle) were limited.
Right tackle Andre Smith (elbow) didn't practice for the Cardinals, and if he can't go in this matchup, that's one key weakness Wade Phillips will be able to exploit. Running back David Johnson was limited by a back injury, while three key defenders were also limited in defensive end Markus Golden (knee), defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche (foot) and safety Budda Baker (ankle). Both Sam Bradford and Larry Fitzgerald were listed as limited but not for injury reasons. On the Rams' side, linebacker Mark Barron didn't practice as he continues to deal with an ankle injury. Todd Gurley also missed practice but not with an injury.
The Lions didn't practice on Monday but listed guard T.J. Lang as would not have practiced due to a back injury. Pass rusher Ezekiel Ansah is dealing with a shoulder injury, and he was listed as limited. Quarterback Matthew Stafford (shin) and running back LeGarrette Blount (shoulder) would have practiced in full, per the report. The 49ers were missing two guards from practice with Mike Person (foot) and Joshua Garnett (toe) held out, potentially giving the Lions defense a weakness to exploit. Receiver Marquise Goodwin (quad), linebacker Malcolm Smith (hamstring) and safety Adrian Colbert (hamstring) also missed practice for a banged up San Francisco team that put linebacker Brock Coyle on IR on Wednesday. Three members of the secondary were also limited on Wednesday.
The Patriots were missing running back Rex Burkhead from practice due to a concussion, and with Jeremy Hill done for the year, that could leave rookie Sony Michel to play a bigger rule than expected. Michel was limited Wednesday due to his knee injury. Right tackle Marcus Cannon has a calf injury but practiced in full nonetheless. Running back Leonard Fournette didn't practice for the Jaguars as he tries to get healthy after suffering a hamstring injury that cut his Week 1 short. Center Brandon Linder joined him as a DNP due to a knee injury. Tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins (core muscle), right tackle Jermey Parnell (knee) and linebacker Telvin Smith (back) were all limited on Wednesday.
Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch was limited on Wednesday while dealing with a shoulder injury. Backup DeAndre Washington (knee) was also limited, so Doug Martin and Jalen Richard could end up having bigger roles if Lynch can't go on Sunday. Offensive linemen Rodney Hudson (ankle) and Gabe Jackson (pec) were also limited. Defensive tackles Justin Ellis (foot) and P.J. Hall (ankle) missed practice, and with Brian Price (hamstring) also limited, the Raiders could be vulnerable up the middle. The Broncos listed six players on the injury report but all practiced in full.
Pass rusher Olivier Vernon remained sidelined for the first day of Giants practice this week as he continues to recover from an ankle injury. Three players were listed as limited by the Giants, including starting receiver Sterling Shepard (back) and backup running back Wayne Gallman (knee). An injured Shepard could open up snaps for Cody Latimer, who played 66 percent of the offense's snaps in Week 1. Five Cowboys missed practice on Wednesday, including two key pass rushers in Demarcus Lawrence (groin) and Randy Gregory (concussion). Center Travis Frederick remains out due to his illness.
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