March 25, 2023

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Examining each AFC contender’s postseason health

Examining each AFC contender’s postseason health

A different NFL season has come to a near — and the NFL playoffs are at last here.

The Chiefs are locked in as the AFC’s top rated seed. They’ll have a probability to rest — and get wholesome — for their Divisional spherical recreation. Six other AFC groups will not be as lucky. They’ll be continuing the 2022 marketing campaign this weekend in the Wild Card spherical.

Several teams enter the playoffs with health and fitness queries at quarterback — or with other star gamers. Let’s choose a nearer glimpse at all of the AFC’s playoff teams.

1st seed: Kansas City Chiefs

In contrast to quite a few other groups, Kansas Town has had a remarkably healthy 2022 time. The workforce enters the playoffs with only 4 gamers listed on its Reserve/Hurt (hurt reserve) record — less than any other NFL crew.

Amongst people are working back Clyde Edwards-Helaire and limited conclude Jody Fortson — each individual of whom may well but return for the playoffs. Prior to the Week 16 sport, head coach Andy Reid stated that the functioning back — who is recovering from a superior ankle sprain — wasn’t “quite there still,” but was “getting close” to a return. Reid also mentioned that there was “a chance” that the restricted end— who experienced an elbow subluxation in Week 15 — could return in the postseason.

Presented the nature of these accidents (and their timelines for recovery), Edwards-Helaire is more very likely to return. In his absence, on the other hand, rookie Isiah Pacheco and veteran Jerrick McKinnon have been productive. Fortson’s availability will be dependent on the severity of his damage, which the crew has not disclosed.

Wide receiver Mecole Hardman is one more injured Chiefs player whose position is mysterious. At first calling his difficulty an “abdominal illness,” the group has shown it as a pelvis harm in modern personal injury experiences.

Hardman has not seen motion considering that 7 days 9. He was activated to the roster on January 4 — specifically at the close of the 21-day observe window that was opened on December 14. In excess of the earlier several weeks, Hardman has been practicing on a limited foundation. Should he be healthy for the playoffs, he would provide a substantial improve to the speed of the top-rated Kansas City offense.

Other Chiefs players who are rehabbing injuries include things like wide receiver Skyy Moore — who endured a lacerated hand in Week 17 — and defensive conclude Frank Clark, who left Saturday’s game with a groin injuries. Since the Chiefs have a bye week to get wholesome, we must hope these accidents to be minimal.

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2nd seed: Buffalo Payments

Buffalo enters the playoffs enjoying for teammate Damar Hamlin. The safety suffered a sudden cardiac arrest through 7 days 17’s activity. Never ever before has the fallout from this kind of an party experienced this kind of an impact on the entire league. It might likely force a neutral-website AFC Championship activity.

Thankfully, all the information with regards to Hamlin and his recovery has been beneficial. He was produced from the College of Cincinnati Medical Center on Monday. The Charges — putting on a selection 3 patch on their chests — will be enjoying difficult for their brother, who carries on to battle his individual fight.

But Buffalo is without having some other crucial players this postseason. Linebacker Von Miller tore his ACL in early December. Safety Micah Hyde is also on hurt reserve, lacking the vast majority of the 2022 year with a neck injury that essential medical procedures.

Third seed: Cincinnati Bengals

Cincinnati enters the playoffs with the a lot of dilemma marks bordering its offensive line. Appropriate deal with La’el Collins tore his ACL in 7 days 17, even though ideal guard Alex Cappa suffered an ankle injuries in the course of the Bengals’ 7 days 18 victory in excess of Baltimore. He was carted off the discipline — and it was documented that he could not set body weight on the anke immediately after the video game, he demanded a scooter in the locker room.

Just after Cappa’s exit, the Bengals’ offense seemed distinctive. The group will be compelled to regulate as it enters the playoffs. Following a rocky begin, the Bengals’ offensive line lastly stabilized, serving to to guide the staff to its 2nd consecutive AFC North title. A lot more updates concerning Cappa’s standing are predicted throughout the 7 days as the Bengals put together for the Ravens.

Fourth seed: Jacksonville Jaguars

Jacksonville is in the dance for the to start with time due to the fact 2017 — and the team is fairly wholesome. It will, on the other hand, be with out starting up left tackle Cam Robinson, who experienced a appropriate meniscus damage in December. Due to the fact he has been placed on IR, the meniscus is in all probability torn. The other important injury is with defensive lineman Dewuane Smoot, who tore an achilles tendon in Week 17.

When neither participant will be out there for the playoffs, the Jaguars enter the postseason on a 5-video game profitable streak. Numerous consider they will move on to the Divisional spherical.

Fifth seed: Los Angeles Chargers

Year-in and yr-out, Los Angeles battles injuries — often important — to star gamers and other critical contributors. The 2022 year has been no diverse.

Even although the sport experienced no bearing on the playoffs, head mentor Brandon Staley inexplicably played most of his starters into the fourth quarter through 7 days 18. Defensive stop Joey Bosa and huge receiver Mike Williams — both of those of whom have battled accidents this time — each came out of the matchup limping.

Bosa skipped the bulk of the year with a groin injuries, whilst Williams skipped time with an ankle difficulty. While Williams experienced to be carted off the area with a low again harm in previous week’s video game, reviews indicated that x-rays have been negative. Both gamers will be monitored carefully as the team prepares for its Wild Card activity against Jacksonville.

In the meantime, still left tackle Rashawn Slater could return for the postseason. He ruptured his biceps in Week 3 of the season. Staley has not claimed whether or not Slater would introduced up to the lively roster for the playoffs.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Baltimore Ravens

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Sixth seed: Baltimore Ravens

The largest query mark for the Ravens (and a large component their playoff hopes) is the standing of quarterback Lamar Jackson, who has not viewed the area due to the fact suffering a PCL sprain in 7 days 13. Jackson was never ever placed on IR, but has even now missed six weeks — which has raised some issues about his position.

Present experiences say the Ravens do not know no matter if Jackson will be readily available for the playoff rematch in opposition to the Bengals. If he however are not able to go, there are other injuries queries at quarterback: backup Tyler Huntley could not participate in in 7 days 18 due to shoulder and wrist accidents.

Seventh seed: Miami Dolphins

With Tua Tagovailoa in the concussion protocol, Miami also has queries at quarterback. This is Tagovailoa’s next diagnosed concussion — and stint in the protocol — this year. He has skipped 4 game titles with these concussions.

When Tagovailoa has skipped action this year, the Dolphins’ offense has been on lifestyle assist. Unfortunately, this is not the only significant damage Miami has experienced to defeat as it enters the playoffs. A total of 12 gamers are on IR. In individual, both the offensive and defensive strains are beaten up.

The Dolphins limped to the season’s finish, ending with a 1-5 record just after commencing the period 8-3. The collapse was mostly because of their injuries.