San Diego Chargers
The Chargers have been finding new and unique ways to give away victories recently, but they do have some good news on the injury front. Tight end Antonio Gates no longer appears on the injury report (he was not even on the practice injury report this week), which indicates he is healthy. Gates missed Weeks 3 and 4 with a hamstring injury. He returned to action in Week 5 against the Raiders and made his presence felt with four receptions and a touchdown, but it’s worth noting he was on the field for only 18 snaps (as opposed to Hunter Henry’s 42). Expect to see Gates increase his snap percentage Thursday night, as both tight ends are likely to get plenty of work.
For the Broncos, their defense remains without DeMarcus Ware, who is recovering from a forearm fracture. The primary player of note on their game status injury report is quarterback Trevor Siemian, who is listed as questionable because of a left (non-throwing) shoulder AC sprain sustained in Week 4. He missed Week 5 as a result, but he was so close to returning, the decision to hold him out was not made until Saturday. In fact, Siemian had a throwing workout Saturday for the coaching staff, but there were concerns that he was still guarded in his movement. Rather than risk an in-game setback when he still appeared limited, the Broncos opted to give Siemian a few additional days of rest.
Apparently, that rest paid off. Siemian wore pads in walk-through practice Tuesday -- the only Broncos player to do so -- presumably to test how he performed functionally in his game gear. Despite limited practices throughout the week and the questionable designation, it appeared he was trending toward a return to action. On Thursday morning, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Siemian will start Thursday night in San Diego. While he may be at some risk for aggravating the injury if he takes a direct blow to his left shoulder, expect him to play without limitation.
For questions about the new injury reporting language, click here.