Concussed Newton among sidelined players
A quarter of the way through the NFL schedule, injuries to high-profile performers are piling up. Here’s a look at some of the stars with shaky health entering today’s action.
Technically, the Panthers hit the field tomorrow evening. In any event, though, the defending NFC champions won’t have Cam Newton at the controls when they battle Tampa Bay. The 2015 MVP suffered a concussion in last weekend’s 48-33 loss to Atlanta and remains in the league’s applicable protocol. Considering the 6-foot-5, 245-pounder hasn’t practiced in roughly 10 days, we suspect that his Week 6 status could be in jeopardy, too.
In the Mile High City, Trevor Siemian (shoulder) possesses a greater chance of suiting up against the Falcons. Even so, Denver coach Gary Kubiak appears ready to tab rookie Paxton Lynch for the assignment. The Broncos just fell from the ranks of the unbeaten, so a setback at the hands of Dan Quinn’s club would likely hasten Siemian’s return. The Northwestern product threw for 756 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions in his first three starts.
Swinging matters to the outside, Dez Bryant’s (knee) questionable tag doesn’t make Dallas feel especially confident about its chances of upending Cincinnati. Dak Prescott comes off yet another efficient performance vs. San Francisco, but an Anthony Brown-Brice Butler tandem on the perimeter won’t exactly strike fear in the heart of the Bengals. If Bryant’s hairline fracture in his right knee continues to prove troublesome, expect slot threat Cole Beasley to benefit the most in terms of targets.
Several rushing attacks also figure to absorb big blows this afternoon. The red-hot Raiders, for instance, are preparing for a contest without Latavius Murray. The Pro Bowler’s injured right toe will force him to miss a key divisional bout against San Diego. In his stead, DeAndre Washington and Jalen Richard seem primed to split carries.
Another RB on the mend: Charles Sims of the Buccaneers. With No. 1 tailback Doug Martin already hampered by a hamstring issue, Dirk Koetter had planned to deploy Sims for the aforementioned primetime clash with Carolina. The third-year burner, however, is himself wrestling with a knee concern. That leaves the recently signed Jacquizz Rodgers, late of Atlanta, to assume the bulk of the load for the immediate future.