Biggest Week 16 injury questions for all 32 NFL teams: Latest on Chris Godwin, DJ Chark, JuJu Smith-Schuster

ByNFL Nation ESPN logo
Thursday, December 19, 2019

We're down to the penultimate week of the 2019 NFL season. Sure, there are some fans out there who can't wait until they can begin focusing on draft prep, with their teams well out of the playoff mix.

But for the rest -- and for those still alive in the fantasy playoffs -- here's the latest scoop on injuries for all 32 teams, straight from the locker rooms.

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Buffalo Bills

Another week, another DNP next to offensive lineman's Ty Nsekhe's name on the Bills' injury report. At this point, it seems odd the team did not place him on injured reserve, as he hasn't practiced even in limited fashion since injuring his ankle against Miami in Week 11. He's trending toward not playing against the Patriots on Saturday, paving the way for another full workload for Cody Ford. -- Marcel Louis-Jacques

Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins don't have any notable injury question marks this week, but they did just place linebacker Raekwon McMillan on injured reserve with a hamstring injury. McMillan has had a strong Year 2. Linebackers Sam Eguavoen, Andrew Van Ginkel and Deon Lacey will likely see a bigger role without McMillan in the lineup. -- Cameron Wolfe

New England Patriots

It would now be a surprise if top slot cornerback Jonathan Jones (groin) plays Saturday against the Bills, and here is why that is significant: Of the 24 CBs who have faced more than 30 passes in the slot, Jones has the lowest completion percentage against him, which reflects his excellence. Meanwhile, the Bills run three-receiver packages 69% of the time, which is fourth-most in the NFL, so a good slot CB is a necessity against them and top slot receiver Cole Beasley. So not having Jones, who is the Patriots' fastest defender, would be a significant blow. -- Mike Reiss

New York Jets

Safety Jamal Adams, sidelined for two games with a sprained ankle, is ready to return this weekend. His presence will add speed and energy to the Jets' defense, which got shredded last week by Lamar Jackson. Meanwhile, wide receiver Demaryius Thomas (knee/hamstring) might sit out again, meaning a key role again for Vyncint Smith. -- Rich Cimini


Baltimore Ravens

Ravens left tackle Ronnie Stanley had full participation Wednesday after missing last Thursday's game against the Jets. With Stanley expected to return, Baltimore should be at full strength when it attempts to clinch the No. 1 seed in the AFC on Sunday at Cleveland. The only other injured player is special-teams contributor Chris Board (concussion), who also had a full practice. The best news for the Ravens was who wasn't on the injury report. Quarterback Lamar Jackson, who missed a practice last week with a quadriceps injury, was not listed this week. -- Jamison Hensley

Cincinnati Bengals

Bengals starting right guard John Miller is still in concussion protocol after suffering a head injury in the Week 15 loss to the Patriots. If Miller isn't cleared by this weekend, expect former first-round pick Billy Price to start in his absence. Price started at center last season, and started a few games at left guard in 2019.-- Ben Baby

Cleveland Browns

Center JC Tretter (knee) and offensive tackle Kendall Lamm (knee) both sat out practice as the Cleveland offensive line continues to be banged up. Tretter played hurt Sunday, while Lamm injured his knee again after sitting out much of the season with a different knee injury. Missing two starters would not be ideal against the Ravens. -- Jake Trotter

Pittsburgh Steelers

For yet another week, the biggest injury question on the Steelers is JuJu Smith-Schuster's availability. A week ago, the wide receiver was a full participant in Wednesday's practice, but wasn't able to finish Thursday. He did too much too fast and ended up missing Sunday's game against the Bills. The Steelers are trying yet again to work him into practice and see how his knee reacts. He was a limited participant Wednesday, but the biggest indicator will be how much he's able to do Thursday and Friday. If he's able to to play, it would be for the first time since Nov. 14, when he sustained the injury against the Browns. -- Brooke Pryor


Houston Texans

Inside linebacker Benardrick McKinney left Sunday's game against the Titans with a concussion and did not practice Tuesday. It's a short week with the Texans playing the Buccaneers on Saturday, but coach Bill O'Brien said he thinks there's "a chance" McKinney will be out of the protocol and will be able to play at Tampa Bay. -- Sarah Barshop

Indianapolis Colts

Three members of the Colts' starting defense -- defensive lineman Denico Autry (concussion), cornerback Kenny Moore (ankle) and safety Malik Hooker (hand) -- did not participate in the team's walk-through Wednesday. Autry's situation appears to be the most severe because he suffered concussion symptoms after Monday's loss to New Orleans. It's usually tough to clear the NFL's concussion protocol with a full week in between games; it's definitely going to be tough on a short week. Second-year player Tyquan Lewis would likely start if Autry doesn't clear the protocol in time. -- Mike Wells

Jacksonville Jaguars

Wide receiver DJ Chark (ankle) practiced on a limited basis Wednesday, which is a positive sign that he will be able to play Sunday against Atlanta. Chark got hurt Dec. 8 against the Chargers, and the injury initially appeared to be a severe ankle sprain that might have kept him out multiple weeks, but he's made quick progress and was cleared Monday to resume running and cutting. Chark needs just 44 yards to become just the fifth player in franchise history to post 1,000 yards receiving. -- Mike DiRocco

Tennessee Titans

Running back Derrick Henry practiced on Wednesday for the first time in two weeks. That's a good sign considering how his hamstring injury appeared to hamper him in Tennessee's 24-21 loss to the Texans last weekend. Henry finished with 21 carries for 86 yards but didn't seem to have the same burst he usually has. Coach Mike Vrabel said Henry did what he was asked to do and was comfortable with doing it. The team will evaluate Henry's situation as the week goes on. But having him on the field despite the chilly temperature in the indoor facility is a good start. Cornerback Adoree' Jackson (foot) also returned to practice after missing the previous two weeks. -- Turron Davenport


Denver Broncos

The Broncos' secondary was already dealing with its share of issues, starting with the fact cornerback Bryce Callahan hasn't even played all season due to a foot injury. Safety Will Parks, who is playing with a cast on his hand since he suffered a fracture Oct. 17 against the Chiefs, is also already playing as the Broncos' nickel corner. Now, toss in the fact safety Kareem Jackson has been suspended for the final two games of the season for a Sept. 19 DUI arrest (he formally entered a plea of guilty to a charge of "driving while ability impaired" in a Monday court appearance in Denver, and was suspended Tuesday). Trey Marshall will start at safety Sunday against the Lions. Marshall, who has played sparingly as part of the dime package of late, has seen just 37 snaps on defense all season. The Lions, despite all of their injuries and struggles overall this season, are still eighth in the league in passing. Kenny Golladay is one of 18 receivers in the league to have topped 1,000 yards already, and his 18.8 yards per catch is third-best in the league. -- Jeff Legwold

Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs could go with their fifth different starting offensive line combination of the season on Sunday night against the Bears. Left guard Andrew Wylie did not practice because of an ankle injury. He would be replaced against the Bears by veteran Stefen Wisniewski, who has played well when forced into the lineup by injuries this season. But the lack of offensive-line continuity has been a problem for the Chiefs, particularly in the running game. -- Adam Teicher

Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers could be without blindside protector Russell Okung for Sunday's contest against the Raiders. Okung missed practice Wednesday due to a groin injury he suffered in last weekend's lopsided loss against the Vikings. "He's going to get treatment all week," Chargers coach Anthony Lynn said. "He may get some limited reps in individual [periods of practice]. We'll see how he progresses at the end of the week to see if he'll play or not." If Okung can't play, Lynn said that either Trent Scott or Trey Pipkins will get the start at left tackle. -- Eric D. Williams

Oakland Raiders

Right tackle Trent Brown, who was named to the Pro Bowl on Tuesday and has missed the past two games with a pectoral injury, will go on season-ending injured reserve, Raiders coach Jon Gruden said Wednesday. Gruden added that rookie running back Josh Jacobs, who has been dealing with a fractured right shoulder since Week 7, will not play at the Chargers on Sunday. DeAndre Washington and Jalen Richard will carry the load. "You miss Josh, if he can't play," Raiders quarterback Derek Carr said, "but at the same time, you don't worry because we have two good backs that can handle it." -- Paul Gutierrez


Dallas Cowboys

Dak Prescott was listed as limited Wednesday, but took no meaningful work practice because of a sprained AC joint in his right shoulder. However, the expectation is the quarterback will play Sunday at Philadelphia. "Knowing Dak, you'd have to kill him to get him off the field," right guard Zack Martin said. Prescott suffered the injury in the first quarter last weekend against the Rams but did not miss a snap. He underwent an MRI that came back negative. If Prescott can't play or hurts it more in the game, then Cooper Rush, who has three pass attempts in three seasons, would take over. Left tackle Tyron Smith did not practice because of an eye infection but he is also expected to be able to play against the Eagles. -- Todd Archer

New York Giants

Quarterback Daniel Jones took most of the first-team reps Wednesday after missing the past two games with a high ankle sprain. Jones said he felt "good" and believes he can do all the things he needs to do in order to start Sunday against the Redskins. Even though coach Pat Shurmur said the Giants will wait to see how Jones does this week, it's sure trending in the direction of a Jones return, with Eli Manning heading back to the bench. -- Jordan Raanan

Philadelphia Eagles

Defensive end Derek Barnett "is getting close" to a return from an ankle injury, per coach Doug Pederson. He's expected to practice later this week. Right tackle Lane Johnson (ankle) is pushing to get on the field for Sunday's game against the Cowboys, but remains day-to-day. Wide receiver Nelson Agholor (knee) and running back Jordan Howard (stinger) have not made any significant progress, putting their availability in doubt for Sunday's de facto NFC East title game. -- Tim McManus

Washington Redskins

The Redskins were missing half their starting secondary Wednesday as safety Landon Collins (Achilles tendon) and corner Fabian Moreau (hamstring) both did not practice. Moreau was hurt in Sunday's game, so his issues were known. But Collins was a new addition. He was on the field stretching and he was walking around fine -- then didn't do any work thereafter. Interim coach Bill Callahan did not discuss Collins during his post-practice media availability, so it's hard to know what his status is for Sunday's game against the Giants and if it was just a rest day. Collins has been excellent against the run this season. The Redskins are getting very thin in the secondary, and if Moreau can't play, they might be forced to play Josh Norman more than the coaches clearly want to at this point. -- John Keim


Chicago Bears

Bears defensive tackle Akiem Hicks (elbow) practiced Wednesday and was not listed on the injury report. There had been some speculation that Chicago might shut down Hicks, who was activated off injured reserve last week, since the Bears have officially been eliminated from the playoffs. But Hicks appears ready to play versus the Chiefs on Sunday night. "It's about the boys, man," Hicks said. "It's about being out there with your guys. I love competition. I love riding with my guys. So when I see us have an opportunity to extend our season, I'm going do everything in my power to add to that." -- Jeff Dickerson

Detroit Lions

Detroit could once again have some major holes at linebacker. Starter Devon Kennard (hamstring) didn't practice and another starter, Christian Jones, was limited with a shoulder injury. That doesn't even count Detroit's third opening day starter, Jarrad Davis, who is on injured reserve. Even one of the backup linebackers, Steve Longa, is practicing with a quadriceps injury. A combination of Longa, rookie Jahlani Tavai and veteran Jalen Reeves-Maybin would see a lot of work if Kennard and Jones can't play -- and it's possible Jason Cabinda could get some action as well. Pay attention to running back Bo Scarbrough's ribs. He practiced on a limited basis but missed Sunday's game against Tampa Bay. Of course, it's possible Kerryon Johnson returns from injured reserve this week, so Scarbrough would see a diminished role regardless. -- Michael Rothstein

Green Bay Packers

The Packers' remarkable run of health continues. While they didn't practice Wednesday -- they will begin their Monday Night Football prep on Thursday -- they came out of last Sunday's game without any issues. Even cornerback Kevin King and tight end Jimmy Graham, who went into the game questionable, played and did not come out any worse off. -- Rob Demovsky

Minnesota Vikings

The extra day Minnesota is afforded for recovery while operating on a Monday Night Football schedule is beneficial for the likes of running back Alexander Mattison (ankle), who was sidelined in Week 15, and cornerback Xavier Rhodes, who injured his calf against the Chargers. When it comes to running back Dalvin Cook, the Vikings might be leaning toward shutting him down until the playoffs while he recovers from two shoulder injuries sustained weeks apart. Cook was already dealing with an injury to his right shoulder/chest area when he hurt his left shoulder in the third quarter at L.A. Having Cook healthy for the postseason is a top priority. If Mattison is able to go Monday, along with Mike Boone, Ameer Abdullah and C.J. Ham, the Vikings' stable of backs is in good position to handle the void that would be created by Cook's absence. -- Courtney Cronin


Atlanta Falcons

A couple of special-teams injuries of note for the Falcons, with return specialist Kenjon Barner held out of practice with shoulder/knee injuries and kicker Younghoe Koo limited with an injury to his left (non-kicking) foot. Barner has showed up on the injury report before (concussion/ankle); when he missed the Tennessee and Houston games, the Falcons went with Kendall Sheffield as the kickoff returner and the now-departed Mohamed Sanu on punt returns. Maybe wide receiver Brandon Powell, with four combined career kickoff and punt returns, will get a chance to handle both duties if Barner is unable to go, considering rookie Sheffield is now a starting cornerback. -- Vaughn McClure

Carolina Panthers

Pro Bowl tight end Greg Olsen was a full participant in practice and is slated to play Sunday after missing the past two games with a concussion. Olsen said Monday that he'd been cleared from the protocol, and he is playing the final two games as though they might be his last in the league. Even though he has a year left on his contract, at age 34 Olsen understands that with the Panthers' coaching change, there will be uncertainty about his future. -- David Newton

New Orleans Saints

The Saints have question marks at both guard and safety this week. Pro Bowl right guard Larry Warford suffered a knee injury Monday night and wasn't back in practice yet Wednesday. However, Pro Bowl left guard Andrus Peat was practicing on a limited basis for the first time since breaking his arm in Week 10. Starting strong safety Vonn Bell (knee) and rookie backup C.J. Gardner-Johnson (concussion) were both held out of team drills Wednesday. But Gardner-Johnson was on the field wearing a red non-contact jersey -- a good sign he might be on the mend. -- Mike Triplett

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

With wide receivers Mike Evans and Scotty Miller going to injured reserve with hamstring injuries, all attention shifts to Chris Godwin. But he has yet to practice this week coming off his hamstring injury Sunday. That leaves Breshad Perriman and Justin Watson as quarterback Jameis Winston's two big receiving targets. Perriman caught three touchdowns last weekend against the Lions. Don't forget tight ends O.J. Howard and Cameron Brate, though: Winston told them, "Hey, y'all are going to get that rock." -- Jenna Laine


Arizona Cardinals

Cardinals linebacker Haason Reddick, who left Sunday's victory over the Browns with a groin injury and did not return, is still day-to-day, coach Kliff Kingsbury said Wednesday. Reddick was on the field for the optional portion of practice Wednesday but his status for Sunday's game in Seattle is still unknown. -- Josh Weinfuss

Los Angeles Rams

Kicker Greg Zuerlein has a quadriceps injury the Rams are closely monitoring ahead of Saturday's must-win game against the 49ers. "We do expect him to be able to play," Rams coach Sean McVay said. "But we'll kick him later in the week and see how he's feeling." The Rams are monitoring the free-agent market for kickers, just in case. -- Lindsey Thiry

San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers look as though they'll be getting some much-needed reinforcements in the secondary this week as cornerback Richard Sherman (hamstring) and nickel cornerback K'Waun Williams (concussion) are back at practice and trending in the right direction. But strong safety Jaquiski Tartt (ribs) is still healing. "[He's] just day-to-day, still just waiting on his ribs to recover," coach Kyle Shanahan said. "Feels a lot closer than last week." But Tartt didn't practice in the early part of this week, which means he could miss a third consecutive game. -- Nick Wagoner

Seattle Seahawks

Pete Carroll said neither linebacker Bobby Wagner nor safety Quandre Diggspracticed Wednesday after suffering sprained ankles last weekend, but the coach continues to sound optimistic that Wagner will play Sunday against Arizona. Diggs has a high ankle sprain, an injury that is hard to come back from in only one week. Jadeveon Clowney (illness/core) and Ziggy Ansah (neck) were scheduled to get some work in on Wednesday, but Carroll said it's too soon to know about their status for the Cardinals game. The Seahawks re-signed edge rusherDekoda Watsonwith that in mind. -- Brady Henderson

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