The 2017 NFL season has seen a number of big-name players go down injured. Here’s a week-by-week look at who got hurt when.
You’re not imagining it: more NFL players are getting injured this year. And it’s not just the guys at the bottom of the depth chart going down. J.J. Watt is on IR. So is David Johnson. Aaron Rodgers has been out since October. The hits keep coming, too, with the Eagles losing MVP candidate Carson Wentz for the season to a torn ACL on Sunday. Below is an attempt to sort through the carnage, week-by-week, cataloging the most impactful injuries in the NFL this year.
Julian Edelman, WR, Patriots (ACL, IR): Edelman’s absence has been mitigated by a strong showing from Brandin Cooks but the Patriots had hoped to pair those two to form outside receiving duo they’ve been lacking for years.
Delvin Breaux, CB, Saints (leg, IR): Breaux fractured his tibia in 2016, came back, injured his shoulder and missed the rest of the season. He was diagnosed with a stress fracture in the tibia in training camp and started the season on IR. The local favorite was initially expected back this year but a setback in his rehab prevented that from happening.
Ryan Tannehill, QB, Dolphins (ACL, IR): Tannehill, who suffered a non-contact torn ACL the first week of preseason this year, missed the end of the 2016 season with a sprained ACL and MCL, which did not require surgery.
David Johnson, RB, Cardinals (wrist, IR): The Cardinals saw their playoff hopes take an immediate hit when their do-it-all All-Pro running back went down with a dislocated wrist in the season opener. The team initially hoped he could return as early as Thanksgiving but Bruce Arians ruled out a return in 2017.
Eric Berry, SS, Chiefs (Achilles’, IR): Berry ruptured his Achilles’ tendon in the first game of the season, a Chiefs’ victory over the Patriots. The safety was given a six-month time frame for recovery, ruling him out for the rest of the season.
Jason Verrett, CB, Chargers, (knee, IR): Verrett partially tore the ACL in the same knee in Week 4 last season. He has appeared in only 25 games since being selected 25th overall out of TCU in 2014.
Allen Robinson, WR, Jaguars (ACL, IR): Frankly it’s amazing that the Jaguars are 9–4 without the man who was their leading receiver in each of the last two seasons.
Greg Olsen, TE, Panthers (foot, missed 8 games): Olsen returned from IR after having surgery on his foot. He tweaked the foot again in his first game back and sat out the next week before getting back on the field in Week 14. He had just one catch for 10 yards in two games since coming back.
Marshal Yanda, OG, Ravens (ankle, IR): The Ravens have had to replace one of the NFL’s most consistent guards with a combination of undrafted Matt Skura and rookie fifth-round pick Jermaine Eluemenor.
Darren Sproles, RB, Eagles (arm and ACL, IR): Philadelphia’s pass-catching back and return man extraordinaire tore his ACL and broke his arm on the same play.
Davante Adams, WR, Packers (concussion, missed no games): Danny Trevathan was handed a two-game suspension (later reduced to one game) for his brutal hit on the Packers’ wideout.
Dalvin Cook, RB, Vikings (ACL, IR): Imagine how good the NFC North leading Vikings would be if their promising rookie running back was available.
Julio Jones, WR, Falcons (right hip flexor, missed no games): The top wideout didn’t miss any time after hobbling off the field against the Bills, but his performance took a hit—and the Falcons lost three of their next four games.
Marcus Mariota, QB, Titans (hamstring, missed one game): Mariota sat out the second half of Week 4 and Week 5 while his hamstring healed.
Chris Carson, RB, Seahawks (lower leg fracture and high-ankle sprain, IR): In his first NFL start, the seventh-round draft pick was knocked out for the remainder of the year with an ankle injury.
J.J. Watt, DE, Texans (knee, IR): Yet another lost season for the NFL’s most feared defensive player.
Whitney Mercilus (pectoral; IR): Watt is a superstar but the Texans also lost another capable pass-rusher in Mercilus. Good thing Jadeveon Clowney is healthy.
Odell Beckham Jr., WR, Giants (ankle, IR): At least the tabloids can’t blame OBJ’s broken ankle on a mid-week boat trip.
Brandon Marshall (ankle, IR): Put Week 5 on the Giants’ 2017 tombstone. The Giants’ three-headed attack of Beckham, Marshall and Sterling Sheppard was supposed to lead them to a Super Bowl. So much for that.
Aaron Rodgers, QB, Packers (collarbone, missed 7 games): Rodgers is eligible to return from IR this week.
Joe Thomas, OT, Browns (triceps, IR): How bad are injuries in the NFL this year? Joe Thomas, who never missed a snap before this year, is sidelined.
Jason Peters, OT, Eagles (ACL and MCL; IR): It was an emotional scene when Philadelphia’s stalwart left tackle was carted off on Monday Night Football.
Carson Palmer, QB, Cardinals (arm, IR): Palmer’s broken arm left the Cardinals with Blaine Gabbert as their starter, which has gone... way better than you would have expected.
Dont’a Hightower, LB, Patriots (pectoral, IR): Fresh off his first Pro Bowl season, Hightower missed two games with a knee injury then tore a pec and was lost for the year.
Jordan Hicks, LB, Eagles (Achilles, IR): Luckily for the Eagles, their middle linebacker is the only defensive starter on IR.
Zach Miller, TE, Bears (knee, IR): Miller isn’t quite a star player but his injury was a reminder of just how brutal football can be. He needed emergency surgery to save his leg from amputation after dislocating his kneecap.
Deshaun Watson, QB, Texans (ACL; IR): Watson was actually injured in practice before Week 9, derailing a potential Rookie of the Year campaign.
Richard Sherman, CB, Seahawks (Achilles, IR): Sherman had never missed a game before tearing his Achillies against the Cards in a Sunday night game.
Kam Chancellor, SS, Seahawks (neck, missed four games): Week 10 wasn’t kind to the Seahawks, who also lost Chancellor. He’s expected to miss the rest of the season but Seattle has yet to put him on injured reserve.
Chris Thompson, RB, Washington (leg, IR): Thompson doesn’t take as many carries as Semaje Perine but he’s a favorite target of Kirk Cousins’s out of the backfield.
Paxton Lynch, QB, Broncos (ankle, missed two games): Denver’s quarterback situation has been a mess this season. After missing the start of the season with a shoulder injury, Lynch made his 2017 debut in Week 12 and promptly twisted his ankle. Head coach Vance Joseph expected him to miss two to four weeks.
Ryan Shazier, LB, Steelers (spine, out for season): The primary concern for Shazier after a frightening spinal injury is his future quality of life.
C.J. Fiedorowicz, TE, Texans (concussion, IR): Houston put Fiedorowicz on IR with a concussion after Week 1. He came back in Week 10, played four games and got another concussion. His career is now in jeopardy.
Carson Wentz, QB, Eagles (ACL, out for season): Wentz was a legitimate MVP candidate piloting an Eagles team that has a real shot at home-field advantage in the NFC playoffs.