We may be just two games from Super Bowl LV, but injuries are still affecting the four remaining teams in the postseason. Everyone is focused on the Kansas City Chiefs, as rookie star running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire missed the divisional round matchup with the Cleveland Browns due to ankle/hip injuries, and then of course the reigning Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes went down with a very peculiar neck/concussion injury during the game. He remains in concussion protocol, but is his status for Sunday’s championship tilt against the Buffalo Bills looking up, or is there reason to doubt he will be ready?
Below, we will evaluate the Wednesday injury reports for all four remaining teams, and analyze if the banged-up players could be ready for championship Sunday.
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Buccaneers outside linebacker Jason Pierre-Paul did not practice on Wednesday and was listed with a knee/not injury related tag, and wide receiver Antonio Brown sat out with a knee injury. Brown underwent an MRI earlier this week on his injured knee, but the results showed no serious damage. He is listed as day-to-day leading into the NFC Championship Game. Several important players were listed as limited participants on Wednesday, however, such as wide receiver Mike Evans (knee), wide receiver Chris Godwin (quad), running back Ronald Jones (quad/finger), cornerback Sean Murphy-Bunting (quad) and safety Jordan Whitehead (knee). Defensive lineman Jeremiah Ledbetter (calf) and offensive guard Ali Marpet (pectoral) were listed as full participants.
All Packers were present and accounted for at practice on Wednesday, but 10 players were listed as limited participants. Those were linebacker Krys Barnes (thumb), kicker Mason Crosby (shoulder), running back AJ Dillon (quadricep), defensive lineman Kingsley Keke (concussion), wide receiver Allen Lazard (wrist/back), tight end Marcedes Lewis (knee), pass rusher Za’Darius Smith (thumb), wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown (knee/ankle), offensive tackle Rick Wagner (knee) and running back Jamaal Williams (ankle). Safety Will Redmond was a full participant with a knee injury.
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Bills at Chiefs
Defensive tackle Vernon Butler (quad) and wide receiver Gabriel Davis (ankle) missed practice for the Bills on Wednesday, while wide receiver Stefon Diggs was limited with an oblique injury. In good news concerning the wide receiver position, Cole Beasley was no longer listed on the injury report with the knee issue he had been dealing with. Defensive lineman Quinton Jefferson was a limited participant with an ankle injury, defensive end Darryl Johnson was a full participant with a knee injury and Tremaine Edmunds was a full participant, but listed with a hamstring injury.
Mahomes, meanwhile, was back on the practice field for the Chiefs on Wednesday and was originally listed as being a full participant with concussion/toe injuries. Being listed as a «full participant’ was not fully accurate, however, as the star quarterback still remains in the concussion protocol. The Chiefs later updated their injury report to say Mahomes was a limited participant.
Edwards-Helaire was a limited participant in practice with his ankle/hip injuries, which is a good sign for Sunday, and wide receiver Sammy Watkins was limited with a calf injury. On the defensive side of the ball, starting cornerback Bashaud Breeland was a limited participant with a concussion and shoulder injury, and fellow cornerback Rashad Fenton was limited with a foot injury. The only player who missed practice on Wednesday for the Chiefs was linebacker Willie Gay Jr. with an ankle injury.
On Thursday, things took an even more promising turn, with coach Andy Reid saying «Pat looked good» as Mahomes took the majority of practice reps.