NFL Divisional Playoffs Injury Watch: Rams, Zack Moss, Ronald Jones
Kyle Trimble is a licensed physical therapist here to provide NFL injury analysis. Read his NFL Divisional Playoffs Injury Watch, which includes looks at Zack Moss’ season-ending ankle injury, Jack Conklin’s hamstring strain, a trio of Rams, and more major concerns.
NFL Divisional Playoffs Injury Watch
John Wolford, QB, Los Angeles Rams: Neck
Aaron Donald, DT, Los Angeles Rams: Rib cartilage tear
Cooper Kupp, WR, Los Angeles Rams: Knee contusion
A trio of key contributors for the Rams upset win over the Seattle Seahawks went out with their respective injuries Sunday. John Wolford left the field in an ambulance after suffering a blow to the head from safety Jamal Adams. Coach Sean McVay later announced that Wolford suffered a stinger as a result of the hit.
However, transportation to the hospital as a precaution isn’t typical for a stinger. There may have been a concern for a fracture which appears to have been ruled out. This injury may be an easy way for McVay to switch back to Goff for the divisional round against the Packers.
Aaron Donald suffered a rib cartilage injury early in the 3rd quarter, never to return for the remainder of the contest. He is expected to play with the medical staff likely numbing as much of the pain as they can in order to play. Besides the pain, Donald can still be effective enough to be a threat to Aaron Rodgers. McVay noted Wednesday that Donald is expected to suit up, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Cooper Kupp went down with a non-contact knee injury late in the 4th quarter, giving worry to long term issues. However, reports indicate that he sustained a knee contusion and that he would not be in danger of missing next week. Overall, his production should not be significantly impacted.
Despite all the positive news, the Packers may still be a smart pick to advance to the NFC Championship.
The moneyline bet of -320 for the Packers, according to PointsBet, may be the safe play.
Zack Moss, RB, Buffalo Bills: Left high-ankle sprain
Zack Moss, the powerful rookie back out of Buffalo suffered an abrupt end to his first season in the NFL with a likely left high ankle sprain. This occurred during a 6-yard run up the right side before getting tackled by several Colts defenders in the 4th quarter.
He has since been officially placed on IR, ending his season. His agent reported he avoided major injury, but reports indicate he could still require surgery to stabilize the area. This should not prevent him from being ready for training camp regardless of intervention.
Devin Singletary will become the lead back with the Bills relying on other options including T.J. Yeldon, practice squad member Antonio Williams, and recently signed Devonta Freeman.
While the Bills’ offense is still pass-heavy, the loss of Moss can be offset by Yeldon’s pass-catching abilities out of the backfield. Considering both the Bills and Ravens have high powered offenses and strong defenses, taking the under on the 50 point total may be a winning bet.
Jack Conklin, OT, Cleveland Browns: Hamstring strain
Conklin, the All-Pro right tackle for the Browns, suffered a hamstring strain in the second quarter in the win over the Pittsburgh Steelers. While it has not been clarified which side was injured, he has since been listed day-to-day. This designation may indicate that this is a Grade 1 hamstring strain.
There is a very real chance of > 30% that he could aggravate the injury if he gets blown off the line by the Chiefs edge defenders. Considering it’s the playoffs, there is a high likelihood that he attempts to play. If Conklin cannot play or suffers a setback, Kendall Lamm would be pressed into service. Kansas City is a heavy favorite at -10 and should be taken regardless of whether Conklin plays or not.
Ronald Jones, RB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Quadriceps strain
There is a lot of confusion as to the specifics of when Jones suffered his quadriceps strain that held him out of Saturday’s win over Washington. It was initially reported that he suffered the quadriceps injury during pregame warmups. Coach Bruce Arians reported Monday that Jones was sore Thursday and Friday and felt that he could not play.
Considering he came into the game without a designation leads me to believe he did injure the muscle in warm-ups rather than what Arians states. Leonard Fournette carried the rock Saturday and could do so again against the Saints if Jones isn’t healthy. The practice reports will be very telling as to whether he can play and be effective. I don’t anticipate his presence alone would cause the spread to change, but having both Jones and Fournette could allow the Buccaneers to open up the offense. This could make Tampa Bay a sneaky choice to secure the upset and move onto the next round.
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.
Use this NFL Playoffs Injury Report to make smart bets and fantasy football picks
After reading the NFL Divisional Playoffs Injury Watch: