Concussion Watch: NFL Head Injuries in Week 5

October 8, 2013
by Jason M. Breslow Digital Editor

San Diego Chargers running back Ryan Mathews (24) is tackled by Oakland Raiders linebacker Nick Roach (53), defensive tackle Vance Walker, and cornerback Tracy Porter (23) during the second quarter of an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 6, 2013. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

Five weeks into the NFL season, here’s where the NFL’s concussion picture stands so far in 2013:

  • In all, teams have reported a total of 36 concussions this season, a pace of 7.2 per week.
  • Nine wide receivers have been sidelined by a head injury, more than any other position in the league. On the defensive side of the field, cornerbacks lead the way with eight concussions.
  • With four concussions each, the Bengals and Titans have reported more head injuries than any other team. Of all 32 teams in the league, 12 have yet to report a head injury.

Last week, we added 10 new players to our Concussion Watch database — six returned to play without missing any game time. This past weekend, we counted another six possible concussions. As we look ahead to next weekend’s games, these are the names we’ll be watching for when teams release their injury reports on Friday:

Chris Harris, Denver Broncos

Broncos cornerback Chris Harris “came up slow” after tackling Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray late in the second quarter on Sunday. “After being evaluated during halftime, Harris was ruled out of the rest of the game,” the Associated Press reported.

The Broncos later confirmed the concussion diagnosis on Twitter.

Week 6 injury report status: Concussion, probable to play.

Ryan Mathews, San Diego Chargers

The Chargers lost running back Ryan Mathews to a likely concussion in the first half of their Week 5 game with the Raiders.

“Mathews appeared to take a knee to the helmet midway through the second quarter, which forced him out of action,” The San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

Chris Ogbonnaya, Cleveland Browns

Chris Ogbonnaya entered the Browns’ Week 5 game with the Bills nursing a thigh injury. By the end of the game, the Cleveland running back had suffered a concussion, Coach Rob Chudzinski told reporters after the win. It was not clear exactly how Ogbonnaya was hurt, but he was kept out of team practice on Monday.

Week 6 injury report status: Concussion, probable to play.

Theo Riddick, Detroit Lions

Lions running back Theo Riddick was briefly hospitalized with a concussion following Detroit’s loss to the Packers in Week 5.

Riddick missed practice on Monday, but Coach Jim Schwartz told reporters that his CT scan was normal.

Week 6 injury report status: Concussion, will not play.

Coty Sensabaugh, Tennessee Titans

Midway through their Week 5 loss to the Chiefs, the Titans tweeted that cornerback Coty Sensabaugh had suffered a concussion and was out of the game.

Two Titans linebackers — Patrick Bailey and Zaviar Gooden — were also injured in the game. Each hurt a hamstring. Coach Mike Munchak called those two injuries “probably the biggest concern.”

Week 6 injury report status: Concussion, questionable to play.

Jason Snelling, Atlanta Falcons

Jason Snelling scored an early touchdown for the Falcons in their Week 5 loss to the Jets, but he left the game following Atlanta’s first drive of the fourth quarter. The Falcons later announced on Twitter that he had a concussion and would not return to the game.

Snelling is the first member of the Falcons to suffer a concussion since the start of the 2013 regular season. In 2012, the Falcons reported just two concussions for the season, tied for the fewest in the NFL.

Week 6 injury report status: Bye week, no injury data to report.

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