Teams across the league are putting the finishing touches on their week of practice leading up to the full Week 9 slate. This upcoming weekend in the NFL has a number of notable matchups, including Cardinals-49ers, Packers-Chiefs and Titans-Rams, to name a few. What each of those games have in common, however, is that injuries (or a player's unavailability) are at the forefront, which brings us to the main subject of this piece.
As teams turn in their final injury reports of the week, let this be your hub for knowing who is in, who is out, and whose status may still be up in their leading up to kickoff. Below, you'll find every injury report and analysis of what it all means for Week 9.
Houston Texans at Miami Dolphins (-5.5)
- Texans: TE Pharaoh Brown (thigh), LB Christian Kirksey (thumb), QB Deshaun Watson (non injury related), LB Hardy Nickerson (concussion) OUT
- Dolphins: LB Jerome Baker (knee), QB Tua Tagovailoa (ribs/left finger) QUESTIONABLE
Tyrod Taylor, who hasn't played since the second quarter in Week 2, will start for the Texans, with rookie Davis Mills headed to the bench. For a ninth straight game, Watson will be inactive. Watson was not traded before the deadline after conversations with the Dolphins.
Baker and Tagovailoa were limited at practice throughout the week. Dolphins coach Brian Flores said on Friday that he is optimistic that Tagovailoa will face the Texans on Sunday.
Las Vegas Raiders (-3) at New York Giants
- Raiders: None
- Giants: RB Saquon Barkley (ankle), LB Lorenzo Carter (ankle), DB Nate Ebner (ankle), WR Dante Pettis (shoulder), WR Sterling Shepard (quad) OUT; RB Gary Brightwell (COVID protocol), WR Kenny Golladay (knee), WR John Ross (quad) QUESTIONABLE
The Giants will once again be without Barkley. While he was able to clear COVID-19 protocols this week, his ankle continues to keep him sidelined for New York. Meanwhile, Shepard is also out while Golladay is questionable, so the wide receiver unit remains pretty banged up.
New England Patriots (-3.5) at Carolina Panthers
- Patriots: DT Christian Barmore (foot), LB Ja'Whaun Bentley (ribs), DL Carl Davis (hand), DB Cody Davis (hand), DB Kyle Dugger (neck), K Nick Folk (left knee), LB Dont'a Hightower (ankle), OL Shaq Mason (abdomen), LB Josh Uche (shoulder), LB Kyle Van Noy (groin), P Jake Bailey (right knee), WR N'Keal Harry (knee) QUESTIONABLE
- Panthers: QB Sam Darnold (concussion, right shoulder), CB Stantley Thomas-Oliver III (toe), G Pat Elflein (hamstring) QUESTIONABLE
Each of the Patriots' questionable players were limited on Friday. Defensive back J.C. Jackson and tight end Jonnu Smith were cleared to play after missing practice earlier in the week.
Darnold was in concussion protocol, but he and Christian McCaffrey are both active. Shaq Thompson (foot) is poised to make his return to the field after missing three games after he was not listed with a game designation on Friday.
Minnesota Vikings at Baltimore Ravens (-6)
- Vikings: DT Michael Pierce (elbow) OUT; LB Anthony Barr (knee), CB Cameron Dantzler (ankle) QUESTIONABLE
- Ravens: RB Latavius Murray (ankle), OL Patrick Mekari (ankle) DOUBTFUL; WR Rashod Bateman (groin), WR Sammy Watkins (thigh), DT Brandon Williams (shoulder) QUESTIONABLE
Pierce won't be able to play against his former Ravens team on Sunday, as the defensive tackle has been ruled out with an elbow injury that he's been dealing with since leaving Minnesota's Week 4 game against Cleveland. Everson Griffen and Harrison Smith were taken off the injury report after initially appearing on it Monday as the team gave them a veteran rest day. The Vikings lost Danielle Hunter for the season after he was injured last week.
While Bateman and Watkins are listed as questionable with injuries, coach John Harbaugh noted on Friday that each does have a chance to play this weekend. Harbaugh said of Bateman's groin injury that it is "nothing serious" and "he's got a real good chance Sunday." As for Watkins, he was limited in practice on Friday, which is encouraging for his prospects to play in Week 9. On Sunday, the Vikings placed Harrison Smith on the reserve/COVID list.
Atlanta Falcons at New Orleans Saints (-6)
- Falcons: No players listed.
- Saints: QB Jameis Winston (knee), DE Carl Granderson (shoulder), WR Ty Montgomery (hamstring) OUT; S Malcolm Jenkins (knee), DE Payton Turner (calf) QUESTIONABLE
The Falcons removed wide receiver Russell Gage from their injury report after initially being limited due to a groin injury. He was a full participant the past two days and will be good to go for Sunday, which is a big development for Atlanta, which will again be without Calvin Ridley as he announced last week he was stepping away from football to focus on his mental health and was placed on the NFL non-injury list.
New Orleans received good news in the form of quarterback Taysom Hill's status. Hill is in line to see the field in some role, according to Sean Payton, on Sunday after starting the week in the league's concussion protocol. Trevor Siemian is slated to start.
Denver Broncos at Dallas Cowboys (-10)
- Broncos: T Garett Bolles (ankle) OUT; S Caden Sterns (shoulder), TE Albert Okwuegbunam (knee), DL Mike Purcell (thumb), G Graham Glasgow (hip), OLB Malik Reed (hip) QUESTIONABLE
- Cowboys: TE Blake Jarwin (hip), T Tyron Smith (ankle) OUT; WR Amari Cooper (hamstring), WR CeeDee Lamb (ankle) QUESTIONABLE
Reed was the only questionable Broncos player who did not practice on Friday. With Bolles out, Calvin Anderson is in line to make his third career start and first start of the season.
Lamb was limited Friday after missing Thursday's practice, while Cooper was limited throughout the week. Quarterback Dak Prescott will play despite being limited earlier in the week.
Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals (-2.5)
- Browns: WR Odell Beckham Jr. (non injury related), T Jack Conklin (elbow) OUT; DE Takkarist McKinley (groin), WR Donovan Peoples-Jones (groin), CB Denzel Ward (hamstring), TE Harrison Bryant (thigh) QUESTIONABLE
- Bengals: EDGE Cameron Sample (knee), HB Chris Evans (hamstring), WR Auden Tate (thigh) QUESTIONABLE
With Conklin out, Blake Hance is in line to start for the Browns at left tackle. Hance has played well in relief duty this season despite largely playing out of position. The Browns announced Friday they were releasing Beckham.
Evans and Tate were limited on Friday, while Sample did not practice after he was limited during Thursday's practice. Fortunately for the Bengals, center Trey Hopkins and guard Jackson Carman will play despite also being included in their mid-week injury report.
Buffalo Bills (-14.5) at Jacksonville Jaguars
- Bills: TE Dawson Knox (hand), OL Jon Feliciano (calf), OL Spencer Brown (back) OUT; WR Cole Beasley (ribs), S Jordan Poyer (shoulder) QUESTIONABLE
- Jaguars: RB James Robinson (heel) QUESTIONABLE
Knox and Feliciano did not practice all week for the Bills, so their statuses are not entirely surprising. Beasley will be an interesting name to follow as he returned to practice on Friday on a limited basis after missing both Wednesday and Thursday.
Robinson was the lone Jaguar listed on the final injury report and he was a limited participant in practice, which does trend positively toward him playing on Sunday.
Los Angeles Chargers (-1.5) at Philadelphia Eagles
- Chargers: CB Michael Davis (hamstring), RB Justin Jackson (concussion), CB Asante Samuel Jr. (concussion) OUT; S Alohi Gilman (ankle) DOUBTFUL
- Eagles: WR J.J. Arcega-Whiteside (ankle) OUT
With Jackson out, the Chargers will likely lean more on second-year running back Joshua Kelley, who has just six rushing attempts this season. Kelley rushed for 354 yards and two touchdowns during his rookie season.
Green Bay Packers at Kansas City Chiefs (-7)
- Packers: DL Kingsley Keke (concussion) OUT; T Dennis Kelly (back), DL Dean Lowry (hamstring) QUESTIONABLE
- Chiefs: T Mike Remmers (knee) OUT; DT Khalen Saunders (knee) QUESTIONABLE
Kelly and Lowry practiced on Friday, which is a good sign for the Packers, who'll give Jordan Love his first start with Aaron Rodgers sidelined after testing positive for COVID-19.
With Remmers out for the Chiefs, rookie Lucas Niang is set to make his seventh start of the season.
Arizona Cardinals at San Francisco 49ers (-2.5)
- Cardinals: RB Jonathan Ward (concussion), DE J.J. Watt (shoulder), S James Wiggins (knee), DT Rashard Lawrence (calf) OUT; WR DeAndre Hopkins (hamstring), QB Kyler Murray (ankle), OL Max Garcia (Achilles) QUESTIONABLE
- 49ers: DL Maurice Hurst (calf), DB Jimmie Ward (quadricep) OUT; RB Elijah Mitchell (rib), WR Deebo Samuel (calf), DL Dee Ford (thumb) QUESTIONABLE
Both Murray and Hopkins are inactive for Sunday's game, meaning Colt McCoy gets the start for the Cardinals. Hopkins' injury kept him inactive from practice throughout the week. Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury said on Friday that Murray -- who did not practice all week -- must be able to play at a "high level" from the pocket if he was to play. Turns out, he will not.
Each of the 49ers' questionable players were limited during Friday's practice.
Tennessee Titans at Los Angeles Rams (-7)
- Titans: FB Khari Blasingame (knee), G Nate Davis (concussion), LB Rashaan Evans (ankle), CB Greg Mabin (anke) OUT; FB Tony Carter (shoulder), T Kendall Lamm (back), T Taylor Lewan (knee), WR A.J. Brown (knee) QUESTIONABLE
- Rams: DL Sebastian Joseph-Day (chest) OUT; WR Robert Woods (foot), OLB Von Miller (ankle), CB Jalen Ramsey (rest/knee), LB Ernest Jones (illness) QUESTIONABLE
Each of the Titans' questionable players did not practice on Friday. Receiver Julio Jones is slated to play after being limited all week with a hamstring injury.
Woods was the only Rams player who is labeled as questionable who practiced on Friday. Miller was held out of practice after being limited on Thursday.
Chicago Bears at Pittsburgh Steelers (-6.5)
- Bears: LB Alec Ogletree (ankle), WR Darnell Mooney (groin) QUESTIONABLE; DB Eddie Jackson (hamstring) DOUBTFUL; QB Nick Foles (non-injury/personal), TE J.P. Holtz (concussion), LB Khalil Mack (foot), RB Damien Williams (knee) OUT
- Steelers: OL B.J. Finney (back) QUESTIONABLE; TE Eric Ebron (hamstring) OUT
The Steelers will miss one of their offensive weapons with Ebron battling a hamstring injury, but it's the Bears who are truly up against it this week. They suffer a massive loss with the injury of Mack, and the defense might also be without Jackson in a week that sees them hoping to avoid a good offensive game from a Steelers club playing in front of their home crowd.