Week 9 Injury Watch: George Kittle, Calvin Ridley, Kenny Golladay

Read the Week 9 Injury Watch from Kyle Trimble, a licensed physical therapist here to provide NFL injury analysis. 

Week 9 Injury Watch

Calvin Ridley, WR, Atlanta Falcons: Left midfoot sprain

Calvin Ridley reportedly suffered a midfoot sprain, similar to what Seahawks RB Chris Carson is working through right now as I mentioned last week.

The team had initially designated the injury an ankle in-game, but Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported that Ridley suffered a midfoot sprain. It goes to note that the test didn’t show much that indicates that this may be a Grade 1 sprain.

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It was noted that midfoot sprains take on average 11.7 days to return to play. Week 9 on Nov. 8 will be 10 days out from the original injury.

Playing on a short week may have helped Ridley to avoid missing any time. He could miss the Week 9 contest against the Denver Broncos. However, barring a setback, he should return against the New Orleans Saints after a Week 10 bye.

Depending on how Ridley practices this week, grab Russell Gage, and if he’s rostered, go Olamide Zaccheaus instead in case Ridley can’t play.


George Kittle, TE, San Francisco 49ers: Left foot fracture

The 49ers are not having any luck at all this season sitting at 4-4, continuously decimated by injuries. The latest is George Kittle. It has been reported by Adam Schefter that Kittle would be out for up to 8 weeks as he recovers from a broken bone in his foot.

Based on the video, it is difficult to say which bone he broke. If this were a sprain, there could be ways to accelerate the healing or support the area to try and get him back sooner. Regrettably, it is a fracture, and he needs time to heal; that is the one thing that cannot be sped up.

During a press conference Tuesday, head coach Kyle Shanahan noted that the training staff told him 8 weeks, Kittle said 2. These players are going to want to play, but that’s why the training staff are in place to prevent these reckless decisions. With as talented of a tight end as George Kittle is, the 49ers do not want him to make poor decisions that affect his health and future.

Unless Nick Mullens and the rest of the 49ers can stay in the playoff race and sneak in as a Wild Card in the NFC West, I would consider Kittle’s season finished.


Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, San Francisco 49ers: Right high-ankle sprain

Jimmy Garoppolo’s season just went from bad to worse Sunday with an aggravation of his high-ankle sprain on the right side. He originally suffered the injury in Week 2 against the New York Jets. He missed two games before returning against the Miami Dolphins with a poor outing. He bounced back for two strong games statistically before suffering another injury.

High-ankle sprains can take upwards of 6 weeks to recover from and Garoppolo came back in two. He plays a relatively protected position that requires less need to pivot and push off the foot.

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Suffering the re-injury Sunday reset the injury clock for his recovery. It doesn’t help that the right side is his plant leg making throwing off his back foot very difficult. The timeline of 6 weeks is due to how long a high-ankle would normally take to recover. Per Kyle Shanahan, this was a whole new injury in how he suffered the injury, but from my perspective, it’s a re-injury.

It’s very possible that he returns sooner than the 6-week timeframe but considering this is a reaggravation, the team is not likely rushing him back. He will already be on IR for a minimum 3-game stay. I’d expect at least the next 4 weeks off before he even considers coming back.


Cooper Kupp, WR, Los Angeles Rams: Right wrist injury

Kupp suffered a right wrist injury hauling in a pass in the third quarter with just over 3 minutes left. He landed on the right wrist as he went out of bounds. He finished the game but was in obvious pain towards the end of the game.

There is potential for a scaphoid fracture based on how he hit or he could have a wrist sprain. Details have not emerged on the specifics yet but a wrist sprain would be far better to deal with. Both injuries involve a fall on an outstretched hand, or FOOSH.

Week 9 Injury Watch: Cooper Kupp's wrist injury
Scaphoid fracture (Credit: Children’s Hospital Colorado)

If Kupp broke the bone, it is possibly season-ending with the possibility of surgery based on where the bone broke at. If it is a wrist sprain, this is much more favorable and could miss 1-2 games. Considering there has not been any more news released at the time of publication, a sprain is the likely injury.

The Rams have a well-timed bye for Week 9 so it’s possible that he doesn’t miss any games.


Kenny Golladay, WR , Detroit Lions: Left hip

Golladay is a tricky injury because outside of the week-to-week designation, little information is available regarding the specifics.

Looking at film from Sunday, he began to struggle the last minute of the second half, eventually calling for a sub favoring his left hip after running several plays. It’s possible that he suffered a hip flexor or adductor strain, both lie on the inner portion of the thigh.

These muscles help lift the leg up and inward, both vital for running and cutting. There is a discussion that he could be placed on IR to get right which would signify that this is not a minor strain.

According to the research, adductor/hip flexor strains take on average 14 days to recover. Looking at the other factors that add to missing time including mechanism of injury and position, these also fall within the 14-day window, give or take a day.

More information will be known in the coming days, but Golladay will be out at least 1 game but potentially up to 3 games. Go look elsewhere for your wide receiver needs or if your desperate, grab Golladay’s backup, Quintez Cephus.

Kyle Trimble is a licensed physical therapist who also works as an injury spotter for Dr. David Chao. Kyle has extensive experience in outpatient orthopedics, skilled nursing, acute care hospital, and home care. He’s also a member of Bills Mafia and runs the website Banged Up Bills.

Disclaimer from Kyle: My opinions are my own. Any thoughts I have on the injuries are based on media reports, my knowledge of the injury, and speculation based on the information currently available including video and print media. This information is subject to change based on the information released by the team.

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