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Bob Thompson | Archive | Email  
Staff Writer

Camp Casualties - Week 4

This training camp series will provide you with in-depth analysis of key injuries and their resultant implications on a players draft value. This information comes straight from my perspective as a physical therapist and collegiate athletic trainer of ten years. Over that time, I have seen and treated almost every injury that can occur in this violent sport. Hopefully this piece gives you a little more insight into the anatomy of an injury.

Player: Peyton Manning
Injury: Disc excision, cervical spine
Healing time: 12-16 weeks
Impact on your cheatsheet: Red flag. Word around Colts camp is that they are preparing to start the year without Peyton. There are no plans for another surgery at this time, but Manning is being re-evaluated by doctors trying to diagnosis the reasons for his slow recovery. I have misread this one from the start. These injuries are usually not very serious, but the fact that heís had two procedures in two years indicates a degenerative condition. His neck mobility is limited, which is a problem for any quarterback. And he probably canít take a hit yet without a lot of pain. If Manning misses Week 1, he could just as easily miss the first four games. Heís falling into the second tier of quarterbacks, if not further.

Player: Arian Foster
Injury: Hamstring strain
Healing time: 3 weeks
Impact on your cheatsheet: Red flag. This is a weird story. Foster re-injured his hamstring and then tweeted the picture of his MRI. An orthopedic surgeon reviewed the picture online and noted that there were some torn fibers and swelling. He also agreed that it was a multiple-week injury. I have a feeling that Foster is going to play in Week 1, but I donít think itís a good idea. As Iíve stated multiple times in this space, the chance to re-aggravate this kind of injury is great. I would prefer he let himself heal and not play until he is 100%. If he doesnít, the risk of re-injury will be there for a while.

Player: Austin Collie
Injury: Foot sprain
Healing time: Day-to-day
Impact on your cheatsheet: Unchanged: To put it simply, Collie is injury-prone. He comes back from his concussion and hurts his knee, then comes back from the knee problem and injures his foot. None of these injuries are serious, but he gets banged up more than you would like to see. The current injury does not appear to be anything to be concerned about, but the Colts have been very quiet about the specifics. Collie did not practice all week, and we should know more once the Week 1 injury report is released on Wednesday.

Player: Tony Moeaki
Injury: Torn ACL
Healing time: Season
Impact on your cheatsheet: Dropped. In the first dumb coaching move of the year, Todd Haley made his starters play into the fourth quarter of their fourth and final preseason game. In that quarter, Moeaki tore his ACL. He was being touted as a Dallas Clark clone and had some sleeper potential. Not anymore.

Player: Rashad Jennings
Injury: Knee injury
Healing time: Season
Impact on your cheatsheet: Dropped. As I am writing this, I realize that every player I have talked about so far is on my dynasty team. Ugh. Itís been a rough start to my year, to say the least. Anyway, Jennings injured his knee and it looks severe. The actual diagnosis has not been disclosed yet, but it appears to be of the ACL variety. Deji Karim will be MJDís new backup.

Player: Jeremy Maclin
Injury: Unknown, Mononucleosis
Healing time: Back to competition
Impact on your cheatsheet: Undervalued but rising. Maclin is now back at practice and putting on lost weight. I wrote two weeks ago that his value was falling fast. Last week he had dropped far enough that he was a great bargain, but he is now vaulting back up cheatsheets. However, he still may be undervalued by some who believe his illness is a major concern.

Player: Matt Cassel
Injury: Broken Rib?
Healing time: 4 weeks
Impact on your cheatsheet: Unchanged. Boy, did Todd Haley screw up! In the old Parcells/Belichik philosophy of letting your players play, Haley decided to let his starters compete into the fourth quarter of the final preseason game. He lost Moeaki (ACL) for the year and his starting quarterback is now reportedly dealing with a rib injury. Cassell will most likely take a painkilling injection so he can play, and I therefore anticipate his being the starter in Week 1.