The Green Bay Packers and San Francisco 49ers kicked off Week 9 on Thursday night, as Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams flew past Nick Mullens and Co., 34-17. The 49ers’ loss this week can probably be blamed on injuries, as they became the first team since the 1970 merger to play a game without their starting quarterback and six of their top seven players in yards from scrimmage, outside of the 1987 replacement player games.
They won’t be the only team that will have to attempt to overcome significant injuries this week, however. For example, the Jacksonville Jaguars will have to do without starting quarterback Gardner Minshew and the New York Giants will not have Devonta Freeman. Several other important players are set to return to the field this week, however, such as Christian McCaffrey and Chris Godwin.
Check out our full injury rundown below that also includes game statues for Week 9 below. All NFL odds come via William Hill Sportsbook.
Giants at Washington (-2.5)
Wayne Gallman and Dion Lewis are expected to carry the load for the Giants in the backfield, as Freeman will be out with an ankle injury. He did return to practice on Thursday and Friday as a limited participant but apparently did not feel good enough to be able to suit up on Sunday.
Washington not having one of their starting offensive tackles in Christian is worrisome, but the good news is that defensive end James Smith-Williams, pass rusher Montez Sweat, tight end Logan Thomas and wide receiver Isaiah Wright are good to go after all being limited participants earlier in the week.
- Seahawks: RB Chris Carson (foot), G Mike Iupati (back), DE Benson Mayowa (ankle), CB Shaquill Griffin (concussion, hamstring), RB Carlos Hyde (hamstring), S Ugo Amadi (hamstring) OUT
- Bills: CB Josh Norman (hamstring) C Mitch Morse (concussion), LB Matt Milano (pec), RB T.J. Yeldon (back), RB Taiwan Jones (hamstring) OUT; DL Vernon Butler (groin), OL Cody Ford (knee), DE Darryl Johnson (knee), TE Dawson Knox (calf) QUESTIONABLE
Seattle will once again be without starting running back Chris Carson along with Carlos Hyde for this matchup against Buffalo. That means another week of DeeJay Dallas, who rushed for 41 yards and a touchdown in Week 8 while catching all five of his targets for 17 yards and another score. The good news for the Seahawks, however, is that safety Jamal Adams does not carry an injury designation heading into this game meaning he’s good to go.
The Bills will again be without several notable starters on Sunday. There’s especially concerning when it comes to the offensive and defensive fronts, as Morse is out while Butler, Ford and Johnson are questionable to play.
Ingram is doubtful to play on Sunday due to an ankle injury, so expect the bulk of the carries to be given to Gus Edwards and rookie J.K. Dobbins.
Hilton did not practice all week due to a groin injury, but the Colts are still giving him a small chance to play on Sunday. Alie-Cox sat out of practice on Thursday with a knee injury, but did return as a limited participant on Friday. He is questionable to play.
The big storyline for the Lions is Golladay being out with a hip injury, as he did not practice all week. Another player to keep in mind is quarterback Matthew Stafford, since he was placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list earlier this week. He has a chance to be activated for Sunday’s game, but he was not able to practice all week.
The Vikings clearly have some issues in the secondary, as they have already ruled out three cornerbacks for Sunday and have another listed as questionable. Hand was a limited participant in practice all week, however, which means he should have a decent chance to suit up.
The Panthers get their best player back this week, as star running back Christian McCaffrey will take the field for the first time since injuring his ankle in Week 2. Carolina could be without one of its best player on the defensive side of the ball, however, as Chinn is questionable to play with a knee injury. The Panthers will certainly need him if they want to attempt to hold the Chiefs’ passing attack in check.
Kansas City will once again be without starting offensive tackle Mitchell Schwartz after he couldn’t get on the practice field this week. While the Chiefs may miss their tackle for Week 9, there seems to be a chance that Sammy Watkins makes his return to action after being limited in practice. If he does return, he’d immediately slot in behind Tyreek Hill on the receiver depth chart, likely hurting Demarcus Robinson and Mecole Hardman’s target share.
Bears tight end Cole Kmet missed Thursday’s practice after tweaking his groin but was able to get back on the filed in a limited capacity on Friday. If that groin injury flares up over the weekend, veteran Jimmy Graham should be in line for a ton of work.
Tennessee will be without receiver Adam Humphries after he was unable to clear concussion protocol and practice this week. His absence should increase the target share for A.J. Brown, Corey Davis, and possibly even tight end Jonnu Smith. As for Jadeveon Clowney, he isn’t trending in a positive direction after not practicing at all this week. While he may be listed as questionable, missing the entire week doesn’t make his prospects of playing all too promising.
Texans (-7) at Jaguars
Houston has an extremely small injury report coming out of its bye. Tight end Jordan Atkins (ankle, concussion) and wide receiver Randall Cobb (illness) were both full participants on Friday, signifying that they are ready to roll for Sunday.
Jacksonville officially ruling out quarterback Gardner Minshew was merely a formality as Doug Marrone had already revealed his fate earlier this week. In his place, rookie Jake Luton will get the start under center. This may also not be just a one-week stint for Luton as Marrone did indicate this week that if the young quarterback plays well, Minshew may not get his starting spot back so easily.
- Broncos: CB A.J. Bouye (concussion) OUT; WR Diontae Spencer (shoulder) DOUBTFUL; CB Bryce Callahan (ankle), RB Philip Lindsay (foot), WR Tim Patrick (hamstring), TE Nick Vannett (foot), S Trey Marshall (illness) QUESTIONABLE
- Falcons: CB Jordan Miller (oblique), DE Takk McKinley (groin), DE Dante Fowler (hamstring ) OUT; WR Calvin Ridley (foot) QUESTIONABLE
Broncos running back Phillip Lindsay is trending in the right direction as he’s officially listed as questionable with a foot injury. Afer not practicing on Wednesday, Lindsay has progressed nicely throughout the week, which included a Friday session where he was a full participant. Corner Bryce Callahan also is trending in a positive direction after practicing on a limited basis on Thursday and Friday.
The injury of note for the Falcons surrounds receiver Calvin Ridley, who is officially listed as questionable with a foot injury. Atlanta held Ridley out of practice all week, albeit Friday being a day where the Falcons closed the facility and conducted business virtually. His status will be worth monitoring as Sunday draws closer. Despite being limited on Thursday and Friday, fellow receiver Russell Gage carries no injury designation heading into Week 9.
- Raiders: DT Maurice Hurst (ankle), Arden Key (foot) OUT; RB Josh Jacobs (knee, illness), S Jeff Heath (hip), T Kolton Miller (ankle), CB Trayvon Mullen (hamstring) QUESTIONABLE
- Chargers: DE Joey Bosa (concussion), RB Troymaine Pope (concussion) DOUBTFUL; CB Casey Hayward Jr. (calf, not injury related), DE Isaac Rochell (neck), G Trai Turner (groin), S Jahleel Addae (hamstring), CB Brandon Facyson (illness) QUESTIONABLE
Josh Jacobs is the big name to watch for the Raiders. While he is officially listed as questionable, the back is trending in a positive direction to end the week, participating in practice on Friday on a limited basis after missing Thursday’s session entirely. If Jacobs isn’t able to play or is limited in any way, that could open the door for Devontae Booker to see some extended carries.
The Chargers don’t expect to have star pass rusher Joey Bosa on Sunday after he missed the entire week of practice as he’s still in concussion protocol.
- Steelers: DE Tyson Alualu (knee) OUT; CB Mike Hilton (shoulder), OL Stefen Wisniewski (pectoral) DOUBTFUL; TE Vance McDonald (illness) QUESTIONABLE
- Cowboys: P Chris Jones (abdomen) OUT; RB Ezekiel Elliott (hamstring), DE Aldon Smith (knee), LB Joe Thomas (wrist) QUESTIONABLE
The Steelers are relatively healthy entering this Week 9 matchup, but not having Alualu on the defensive line is certainly notable.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones noted that he expects both Ezekiel Elliott and Aldon Smith to play on Sunday against the Steelers, despite their questionable status. Jones’ comments along with both Elliott and Smith participating in practice on Friday on a limited basis do point to things trending in a strong direction for two key players on Dallas’ roster.
Given that Matt Breida wasn’t able to hit the practice field all week, seeing him already ruled out isn’t exactly jaw-dropping. It does, however, make for an interesting backfield for Miami after placing Myles Gaskin on IR earlier this week. Miami did trade for DeAndre Washington at the deadline so he could see some significant carries alongside Jordan Howard as he makes his Dolphins debut.
With Kenyan Drake out for Arizona, Chase Edmonds will get the nod to start in the Cardinals backfield. After not being able to practice this week, there was little chance that Dre Kirkpatrick was going to be able to play and the Cards have since shut the door on that possibility.
- Saints: WR Michael Thomas (ankle, hamstring) QUESTIONABLE
- Buccaneers: G Ali Marpet (concussion) OUT; WR Chris Godwin (finger) QUESTIONABLE
The Saints officially listed receiver Michael Thomas as questionable after being limited all week in practice. That said, the star pass-catcher is expected to make his long-awaited return on Sunday Night Football, according to Dianna Rusini of ESPN. Quarterback Drew Brees, who was limited on Wednesday and Thursday, does not carry an injury designation heading into the weekend, meaning he’s good to go. New Orleans also placed defensive tackle Sheldon Rankins (knee) and defensive back Justin Hardee (groin) on IR.
The Buccaneers have a pretty short injury report heading into Week 9 and it really doesn’t have many surprises. While Chris Godwin is technically listed as questionable, he was a full participant in practice on Friday so he is trending in a positive direction. Guard Ali Marpet wasn’t able to get on the practice field all week so his status isn’t totally shocking.
- Patriots: TBA
- Jets: TBA
Analysis to come.