NFC West: Injury situations that matter

Arizona: Calais Campbell (ankle) was the only Cardinals player to miss practice Wednesday. Fellow defensive end Darnell Dockett (shoulder) is hurting, though. Having two-thirds of the Cardinals' defensive front hurting has exposed an already shaky situation at linebacker. Campbell and cornerback Greg Toler (toe) could return this week. Linebackers Paris Lenon (knee) and Clark Haggans (groin) are also less than full strength. The team is healthier on offense now that receiver Steve Breaston, running back Beanie Wells and running back LaRod Stephens-Howling are participating fully.

St. Louis: Losing versatile tight end Mike Hoomanawanui to another ankle injury forces the Rams to adjust their approach. The rookie was becoming a bigger part of the offense as a blocker and receiver. Fullback Mike Karney wasn't active Sunday in part because Hoomanwanui can line up at the position in needed. The Rams' offense remained effective against Denver without Hoomanwanui in part because rookie receiver Danario Alexander caught four passes for 98 yards in his first game back from knee surgery. Alexander brought a physical downfield presence to the passing game. On defense, a foot injury limited tackle Darell Scott, who struggled some against the Broncos.

San Francisco: The 49ers are optimistic about Frank Gore's chances for a full, non-surgical recovery from a fractured right hip. That would be great news for Gore and the team, but it will not help them this season. Gore's placement on injured reserve ends his season. The team could run its offense more through Vernon Davis and Michael Crabtree. Running backs Brian Westbrook and Anthony Dixon figure to share carries. Tony Wragge could take over at center against Green Bay if doctors do not clear David Baas to return from the concussion he suffered at Arizona. I spoke with Baas after the game and he seemed fine, but symptoms aren't always obvious and the NFL is requiring independent doctors to clear players following concussions. The 49ers are unofficially listing outside linebacker Parys Haralson as day-to-day following an ankle injury. Travis LaBoy provides insurance at the position.

Seattle: Receiver Mike Williams "surprised himself" by "running around a little bit" and catching passes Wednesday, coach Pete Carroll said. Carroll said Williams' performance in practice was "encouraging" and the team hopes Williams can play against Carolina, although much uncertainty remains. Seattle is a different team offensively with Williams. Without him, they have struggled to convert third downs and move the ball overall. There's a chance nose tackle Colin Cole could return from an ankle injury this week. The Seahawks need Cole to help shore up their sagging run defense. The Seahawks are hoping fullback Michael Robinson can return from a hamstring injury. Robinson hasn't played since Week 7. Getting Robinson back gives the Seahawks more options with personnel groups. They have no other fullback on the roster. Tight end John Carlson has taken reps at fullback on an emergency basis, taking him out of the passing game.