T.Y. Hilton

Injury Roundup: Hilton, Lions, Bolts, Rams

It’s looking like the Colts‘ passing attack will have to operate without its top weapon Sunday. T.Y. Hilton drew a doubtful designation on Indianapolis’ Friday injury report. He did not practice all week. The eighth-year wideout left the Colts’ Week 3 win with a quadriceps injury, and although the Raiders enter Week 4 ranked 30th in pass defense DVOA, the Colts went 0-2 without Hilton last season. They are already down previous starter Devin Funchess, who sits on IR. The Colts also ruled Darius Leonard out for a second straight week. The All-Pro linebacker remains in concussion protocol.

Here is the latest from the Week 4 injury front:

  • Matthew Stafford popped up on the Lions‘ injury report Friday; he’s listed as questionable with a hip malady. While Stafford should be expected to play, given that he’s played through injuries in recent years and holds the league’s third-longest active start streak among QBs with 131, this is a less-than-ideal scenario going into a key inter-conference matchup with the Chiefs. Rookie UDFA David Blough has been Stafford’s backup this season, though Jeff Driskel is now on Detroit’s 53-man roster.
  • That matchup will not include Chiefs starting running back Damien Williams, who will miss a second straight game with a knee ailment. LeSean McCoy put together two full practices this week and will likely team up with Darrel Williams, as he did last week, in Detroit.
  • Good news for the Rams‘ offense. Sean McVay said both Austin Blythe and Tyler Higbee will be available against the Buccaneers on Sunday, per Lindsey Thiry of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Blythe missed Los Angeles’ Week 3 game with a sprained ankle, while Higbee has been sidelined with a lung contusion.
  • Another Chargers game will unfold without their primary kicker option. The Bolts ruled out Michael Badgley for a fourth straight contest. Punter Ty Long‘s multipurpose afternoons will continue. Long made both of his field goal tries last week after missing two in Week 2.
  • Additionally for the Bolts, they will be without Mike Williams. He’s been declared out with a back injury. Travis Benjamin will head to Miami as doubtful to play, meaning Dontrelle Inman and Geremy Davis stand as the Chargers’ only two healthy auxiliary wideouts. This marks Williams’ second injury of the season. A knee problem plagued the third-year target earlier this month but did not force him to miss any time.
  • The Vikings‘ No. 2-ranked rushing attack will be tested in Chicago this week, and right guard starter Josh Kline will not play a part in the NFC North contest. The free agent acquisition will miss Sunday’s game with a concussion that kept him out of practice this week. This will end Kline’s 49-start streak. Veteran Dakota Dozier will start, per Mark Craig of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Dozier has started eight games in his six-season career, which included a Week 2 start in place of Pat Elflein.

Injury Updates: Hilton, Coutee, Inman

A handful of wideouts were listed as questionable heading into today’s playoff matchup between the Texans and Colts, and it sounds like the three receivers will end up playing. NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reports (via Twitter) that Texans wideout Keke Coutee and Colts receiver Dontrelle Inman are expected to play. Rapoport also notes that while Colts star wideout T.Y. Hilton is beat up, “the belief is he’ll play today.”

Hilton has been battling through injuries for much of the season, and he’s currently dealing with an ankle ailment that kept him out of this week’s practices. However, considering that the 29-year-old played through injuries during the regular season, it’s not all that surprising that he’ll likely see the field for a home playoff game. Andrew Luck and the Colts will continue to rely on Hilton, who finished the 2018 campaign with 76 receptions for 1,270 yards and six touchdowns.

The Colts will also be able to turn to Inman, who has been battling through shoulder and finger injuries. The 29-year-old joined the Colts in mid-October, and he ended up playing a relatively big role for Indy. Inman finished the season with 28 receptions for 304 yards and three touchdowns in nine games (four starts).

Meanwhile, Coutee is expected to return from a hamstring injury that has shelved him since the end of November. The rookie has struggled with injuries all season, limiting him to only six games. However, the Texas Tech product has been productive when on the field, hauling in 28 catches for 287 yards and one score. With Demaryius Thomas and Will Fuller sitting on the IR, Coutee should see plenty of targets playing behind DeAndre Hopkins.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Injury Updates: Patriots, Colts, Lions, Redskins

The final injury reports for Week 7 came out earlier today, and there was a lot of news. Lots of key players will be missing their team’s games, while others will be returning after extended absence. One notable rule-out was the Patriots declaring that starting right tackle Marcus Cannon would miss their game against the Bears. It’s a big loss for New England, especially in a week where they have to go up against Khalil Mack. Mack will now be lining up across from a backup tackle, and could end up making life miserable for Tom Brady.

Here are more injury updates from around the league:

  • The Colts have been the most injured team in recent memory the past few weeks, but are finally getting some good news. Star receiver T.Y. Hilton has missed the past two games with a hamstring injury, but is ready to make his return this week. Unfortunately for Indianapolis, they’ll still be without tight end Jack Doyle and receiver Ryan Grant as well as several key contributors on defense like safety Clayton Geathers and defensive tackle Denico Autry.
  • The Lions will be without running back Theo Riddick, who went down during the team’s win over the Packers. Riddick has been operating as the Lions’ third down back, and rookie Kerryon Johnson should get more run with him out of the way. On the bright side, the team looks like it could be getting back pass-rusher Ezekiel Ansah, who hasn’t played since Detroit’s Week 1 loss. Ansah is listed as questionable but practiced all three days this week.
  • The Redskins will be thin on pass-catchers, as Jamison Crowder has been ruled out for the team’s game against the Cowboys while Paul Richardson is listed as doubtful. Washington promoted Jehu Chesson from the practice squad yesterday, signaling they weren’t expecting Richardson to play. Tight end Jordan Reed should see a ton of looks as the Redskins’ receiving corp is completely depleted.

For a rundown of every team’s injury situation, you can view all 32 injury reports over at ProFootballTalk.com.

Extra Points: Garrett, Browns, Cardinals, Bradford, Packers, Allison, Colts, Hilton

Myles Garrett, last year’s number one overall pick, has gotten off to a great start in 2018. He has 4.5 sacks through four games, and has established himself as one of the best pass-rushers in the league at the age of 22. He’s been a genuine force, and has been a large part of Cleveland’s defensive resurgence. Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com even thinks Garrett will be in the “conversation for NFL Defensive Player of the Year as long as he stays healthy.” Garrett had an injury plagued rookie season, but it looks like Sashi Brown and the old Browns front office clearly made the right choice by taking him first overall in 2017.

Kay Cabot also thinks the Browns would be wise to attempt to trade quarterback Tyrod Taylor. Taylor has been sent to the bench due to the strong play of Baker Mayfield, and the Browns no longer need him in the final year of his contract. It’s unclear if Taylor and his hefty contract have any actual trade value, but Kay Cabot thinks Cleveland should be calling up quarterback needy teams like the 49ers.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • After promoting Josh Rosen to be the team’s starter, the Cardinals made an interesting decision to demote Sam Bradford to third string and make Mike Glennon the backup. Many assumed the decision was because Bradford would no longer earn his per game roster bonuses of over $300K as an inactive third-stringer, but Arizona coach Steve Wilks denied that after the game today. Wilks said the decision was all his and not forced on him by the front office, and that it was just about “making the best decision for the team” according to Josh Weinfuss of ESPN (Twitter link).
  • Packers receiver Geronimo Allison sustained a concussion in the team’s win over the Bills today, according to Jason Wilde of ESPN (Twitter link). Allison has started to emerge as a viable number two receiver this year, and him missing any amount of time would be a big blow to a receiving corp that’s already dealing with an injury to Randall Cobb.
  • Colts receiver T.Y. Hilton had to leave the team’s loss to the Texans with a hamstring injury, and coach Frank Reich told reporters Hilton probably won’t be able to play in the team’s Week 5 game against the Patriots, according to Adam Schefter (Twitter link). The Colts will be playing on a short week on Thursday Night Football, and will be tasked with beating New England on the road without their best offensive playmaker.


Trade Rumors: Colts, Dolphins, Bears, Pats

Colts wideout T.Y. Hilton is indeed on the trade block, and while Indianapolis is receiving calls on their top offensive weapon, general manager Chris Ballard & Co. hold Hilton in “high regard,” tweets Chris Mortensen of ESPN.com. As such, a deal involving Hilton remains “highly unlikely.” That notion doesn’t come as a complete surprise, given that Hilton has still been productive even without quarterback Andrew Luck available, and remains under team control for several seasons at reasonable rates.

Let’s take a look at more surrounding the NFL’s trade deadline, which hits Tuesday at 4pm Eastern:

  • The Dolphins are focusing on improving their offense via trade, and are more willing to exchange players than draft picks, sources tell Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald. That Miami would be set on fixing an offense that ranks dead last in both points and yards per game comes as no surprise, but other teams are apparently more receptive to draft selection-oriented deals. Wide receiver, running back, and offensive line are all possible positions of need for Miami, and the “elephant in the room” is slot receiver Jarvis Landry, per Salguero. Landry has mentioned in trade talks before and has yet to be offered an extension, so it makes sense that the 2018 free agent could be on the table.
  • Having already made one trade to acquired receiver Dontrelle Inman, the Bears are likely done making deals, reports Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune. The Inman deal was almost a necessity, as rookie quarterback Mitch Trubisky needed some sort of offensive weaponry reinforcement following a four-completion day in Week 7. Acquiring more players is probably out of the question given Chicago’s position on the win curve, and dealing away veterans such as cornerbacks Kyle Fuller and Prince Amukamara would signal the raising of a white flag, something the Bears aren’t willing to do given their surprising 3-5 record, per Biggs.
  • After shipping backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to the 49ers earlier tonight, the Patriots are now on the hunt for defensive run-stuffers, according to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (Twitter link). In fact, La Canfora suggests New England could use their newly-acquired second-round pick in order to pick up a defender before tomorrow’s trade deadline. Of course, given that San Francisco’s second-rounder will likely be the No. 33 or 34 selection in the 2018 draft, the Patriots would likely be looking for a high-impact defensive player.
  • Speaking of Garoppolo, the Browns apparently only offered a second-round pick “and change” in exchange for New England’s No. 2 signal-caller during the draft, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. Some reports indicated Cleveland was willing to part with a first-rounder in order to land Garoppolo, but that apparently wasn’t the case.

Extra Points: Vikings, Zeke, Williams, Lynch

Sam Bradford does not have a return timetable after making a brief cameo in Chicago earlier this month. The Vikings quarterback is still experiencing knee pain, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (video link). However, Minnesota may be set to finally have some quarterback depth again after its Week 9 bye. Teddy Bridgewater is expected to come off the PUP list after the bye, and Rapoport expects him to immediately compete with Case Keenum for the Vikes’ starting job. A mostly Keenum-led team this season, the Vikings lead the NFC North after their win over the Browns on Sunday. Bridgewater reclaiming his job might be a bit tricky considering where the team is in the standings and how long it’s been since the fourth-year passer was at the controls. But a Bridgewater return gives the Vikings options they don’t currently have with Bradford still on the mend.

Here’s the latest from around the league.

  • Ezekiel Elliott did not travel with the Cowboys back to Dallas on Sunday night, instead trekking to New York for his seminal court date, Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports (on Twitter). Elliott did not attend his previous hearing with New York’s Fifth Circuit Court in New Orleans earlier this month. The Cowboys star back rushed for more than 100 yards for a second straight week and has five touchdowns over the past two games but could see his suspension go into effect as early as next week if Monday goes poorly for his side.
  • Trent Williams is hoping the Redskins‘ bye week gives him time to heal his knee injury, but the Washington tackle isn’t certain that will do the trick, per John Keim of ESPN.com. Williams said earlier this month he’s hoping to put off surgery until after the season but revealed Sunday (via Keim) some doctors have told him that’s a six- to nine-month rehab process. Calling this a deep bone bruise, Williams added other medical personnel have said he can go the rest-and-recover route. So this bye week will be critical for the status of Washington’s injury-ravaged offensive line.
  • Speaking of left tackle injuries, Joe Staley suffered an orbital bone fracture Sunday. But the 11th-year 49ers edge blocker received a bit of good news, with Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee reporting (via Twitter) no surgery will be required. Still, this could end any Staley trade speculation and keep him in San Francisco for another full season.
  • Paxton Lynch is no longer on the Broncos‘ injury report, and the second-year quarterback could be in uniform Monday night for the first time this season, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk notes. The Broncos have not received much help from their offense the past three games and have fallen to 3-3. The team obviously would be interested in getting its 2016 first-rounder on the field at some point, but Trevor Siemian won the job in the preseason. However, if the Broncos slink out of the playoff race as a result of a brutal upcoming schedule — the Chiefs, Eagles and Patriots represent Denver’s ensuing three games — Lynch could be summoned for a full-on audition.
  • Devon Still is considering retirement. The former Bengals rotational defensive lineman told TMZ he plans to decide in a couple of weeks if he will pursue a shot at another opportunity or not. The 28-year-old interior defender is currently a free agent, having last played with 2016 Texans. The Jets cut Still in August.
  • T.Y. Hilton is rumored to be on the trade block. Florio hears from multiple sources the NFL’s reigning receiving-yardage leader is available. Florio opines a future Hilton-type talent could come out of a mid-round draft pick, allowing the Colts — now run by a decision-maker in Chris Ballard who did not draft the sixth-year wide receiver — to offload Hilton’s $13MM-AAV contract and improve the roster with the savings.

Colts WR T.Y. Hilton Available Via Trade?

T.Y. Hilton‘s name has popped up as a player who could be traded before Tuesday’s deadline, according to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. While the asking price for the Colts’ No. 1 wideout would presumably be sky-high, a source tells Florio “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” in relation to a potential deal.T.Y. Hilton (Vertical)

Hilton, 28 next month, has no interest in leaving Indianapolis, per Florio, and also wouldn’t be amenable to altering his contract in order to ease a trade. The Colts inked Hilton to a five-year, $65MM extension prior to the 2015 campaign, and he still has three years remaining on his current pact. The former third-round pick has non-guaranteed base salaries of $11MM, $13MM, and ~$14.5MM over the next three seasons, all of which are relative bargains for a pass-catcher of Hilton’s caliber.

The Colts have struggled in 2017 without Andrew Luck under center, but despite the lack of quality talent on Indianapolis’ roster, there’s been no indication the club is ready to undergo a complete rebuild under general manager Chris Ballard. In 10 months as the Colts’ top decision-maker, Ballard hasn’t traded away any key pieces, as his most high-profile deals have included spare parts in tight end Dwayne Allen and wide receiver Phillip Dorsett.

Dealing Hilton, though, would signal Indy’s intention to revamp its roster, as he’s been the team’s top offensive weapon for four-plus seasons. From 2013-16, Hilton averaged 81 receptions, 1,250 yards, and six touchdowns per season, and while his numbers in 2017 aren’t as eye-popping given the absence of Luck, Hilton has still managed 512 receiving yards through seven games.

Hilton isn’t the only Colts player to be mentioned in trade rumors today, as left tackle Anthony Castonzo and cornerback Vontae Davis have also been bandied about as potential candidates to be shipped out prior to Tuesday.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Watt, Bryant, Others Get Salary Guarantees

Several NFL players have contracts containing language which states that they’ll get a full or partial salary guarantees for 2016 and/or 2017 if they remained on their respective teams on Sunday, the fifth day of the league year. Let’s check in on those players (link courtesy of CBS Sports’ Joel Corry):

  • Ryan Tannehill, quarterback (Dolphins): $3.5MM of $17.975MM base salary for 2017 is guaranteed.
  • Dez Bryant, wide receiver (Cowboys): $13MM base salary for 2017 is guaranteed.
  • T.Y. Hilton, wide receiver (Colts): $3MM base salary for 2016 is guaranteed. $6MM roster bonus now "<strongpayable.
  • Anthony Castonzo, offensive tackle (Colts): $2.5MM base salary for 2016 is guaranteed. $4.5MM roster bonus now payable.
  • Tyron Smith, offensive tackle (Cowboys): $10MM base salary for 2016 is guaranteed.
  • Branden Albert, offensive tackle (Dolphins): $6MM of $8.245MM base salary for 2017 is guaranteed.
  • Mike Pouncey, center (Dolphins): $9MM base salary for 2016 is guaranteed, as is $2MM of Pouncey’s $7.95MM base salary in 2017.
  • Maurkice Pouncey, center (Steelers): $3.5MM roster bonus now payable.
  • Cameron Heyward, defensive end (Steelers): $5MM roster bonus now payable.
  • J.J. Watt, defensive end (Texans): $10.5MM base salaries for 2016 and 2017 are guaranteed.
  • Robert Quinn, defensive end (Rams): $7,777,777MM base salary for 2016 is guaranteed.
  • Lavonte David, linebacker (Buccaneers): $5MM base salary for 2016 is guaranteed.
  • Chris Harris Jr., cornerback (Broncos): $6.9MM base salary for 2016 is guaranteed.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC Notes: Pats, Hilton, Rice, Manziel

Earlier this week, the NFL reinstated Patriots employee Jim McNally from suspension for his role in the DeflateGate scandal. McNally may not be totally out of the woods yet, though, as new allegations against him have come to light. Former official Mark Baltz, the league’s head linesman from 1989-2013, told WTHR.com that he was always suspicious of McNally, according to John Breech of CBSSports.com.

“[McNally] was always worried about the footballs. Always,” Baltz stated. “It was very odd. I reported him to the league, but never got any reaction from them. I don’t think they thought it was a big deal at the time. But [McNally] did things that 31 other locker room attendants don’t do.”

Baltz said he reported McNally to the league six to eight years ago.

“All I know is, when he got [the footballs], he would run. He would take off,” Baltz added. “Whether he was going somewhere and letting air out, I’m definitely suspicious, but I don’t know for sure.”

Here’s more from around the AFC:

  • Colts No. 1 receiver T.Y. Hilton caught seven passes for 88 yards before suffering a knee injury that caused him to leave the team’s 27-14 loss to Buffalo last Sunday. Afterward, there was fear that he’d be out for a solid chunk of time. However, Hilton and head coach Chuck Pagano think he could be ready to go in time for Monday’s game against the Jets.  “A game-time decision depending on how I feel,” Hilton said Thursday, according to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. Pagano said he has “a lot” of optimism that Hilton will play this week.
  • With LeSean McCoy‘s hamstring injury continuing to be an issue, the Bills suddenly look thin at running back. However, don’t expect them to sign free agent Ray Rice, according to Tyler Dunne of The Buffalo News (Twitter link). Instead, look for rookie Karlos Williams‘ workload to increase. Williams rushed for a team-high 55 yards and a touchdown on just six carries in the Bills’ win over Indianapolis.
  • There aren’t many believers left when it comes to Johnny Manziel, but Browns offensive coordinator John DeFilippo is one of them. “Johnny has tremendous physical attributes — tremendous physical attributes,” DeFilippo said, according to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “We just have to keep grooming him and keep teaching him situational football and when to take chances and when not to.”
  • The Ravens got just 190 total yards from their offense in their 19-13 opening week loss to Denver. New offensive coordinator Marc Trestman took the blame, per Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun (via Twitter). Trestman said his offense has to find ways to get the ball downfield. That should be easier this week against a thin Oakland secondary.

T.Y. Hilton To Miss Several Games?

Colts receiver T.Y. Hilton left today’s game against the Bills after suffering a knee injury, and owner Jim Irsay told reporters, including Mike Chappell of CBS 4 (Twitter link), that Hilton is expected to miss several weeks. Meanwhile, a source tells Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk (Twitter link) that Hilton “should be fine”, but that he will undergo an MRI.

The two reports aren’t mutually exclusive, as Hilton could still be “fine” even if he is sidelined for a few weeks. Indy’s hope, obviously, is that Hilton didn’t suffer a serious injury that will force him out for an extended period of time. The Colts do have the receiver depth to cover for a Hilton injury, though, especially if it’s only for a short period of time. Andre Johnson would step in as the club’s No. 1 pass-catcher, while Donte Moncrief and rookie Phillip Dorsett could see expanded roles.

Still, losing Hilton for any period of time will certainly hurt. The 25-year-old caught 82 passes for 1,345 yards and seven touchdowns last season, and was handsomely rewarded for his efforts, inking a five-year, $65MM extension earlier this year.