As much as we enjoy watching the NFL for entertainment purposes, we cannot forget that these athletes put their bodies on the line each and every week.
This sport requires discipline, focus, and major toughness. It is an incredibly physical game. As such, players better be prepared for the wear and tear that comes along with the competition. Unfortunately, just because you’re prepared for the task at hand, that doesn’t mean injuries aren’t bound to happen.
This latest week in the National Football League was full of highs and lows. And we’re not just talking about wins and losses. The injury bug was at it again. Some players managed to escape with minor wounds. Others were not so lucky. So as the 2015 season continues to push forward, we take a moment to go over some of the players who may be forced to miss a bit of time. With that in mind, here’s a look at the seven most serious injuries from week four in the NFL.
1. Alec Ogletree, linebacker, St. Louis Rams
- Injury: Ankle injury
- Diagnosis: Out
The St. Louis Rams may have defeated the Arizona Cardinals 24-22 this past Sunday, handing Bruce Arians’ group its first loss of the 2015 season, but they didn’t come out of this week-four contest without suffering their own loss. Rams linebacker Alec Ogletree had to be carted off the field on Sunday after sustaining a right ankle injury. According to coach Jeff Fisher, the 24-year-old will require surgery and could potentially miss the rest of the season.
2. Steve Smith Sr., wide receiver, Baltimore Ravens
- Injury: Small fractures in back
- Diagnosis: Out for week five against the Cleveland Browns
By defeating the Pittsburgh Steelers in overtime by a score of 23-20, the Baltimore Ravens avoided starting the 2015 season with an 0-4 record. Unfortunately for Steve Smith Sr., the night wasn’t a complete success. The wide receiver sustained “some small microfractures in his back,” according to Ravens head coach John Harbaugh. As a result, he has been ruled out of the team’s week-five contest against the Cleveland Browns. Considering what Smith brings to the table, this is a major loss for a Baltimore team looking to build some momentum.
3. Lance Dunbar, running back, Dallas Cowboys
- Injury: Torn left ACL
- Diagnosis: Likely done for the season
The hits keep on coming for the Dallas Cowboys. As if the team wasn’t already depleted enough on the offensive side of the ball, now it appears that running back Lance Dunbar — who was injured during the team’s 26-20 loss to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday night — in fact, tore the ACL in his left knee. Given the extent of the injury and the surgery it requires, Dunbar is likely done for the season.
4. Leonard Williams, defensive end, New York Jets
- Injury: Sprained ankle
- Diagnosis: Questionable
New York Jets rookie Leonard Williams suffered a sprained ankle during the team’s 27-14 victory over the Miami Dolphins in week four. While the star defensive end wasn’t the only Jets player to sustain an injury during the contest, he is the biggest question mark as the team heads into its bye week.
5. Sean Lee, linebacker, Dallas Cowboys
- Injury: Concussion
- Diagnosis: Must clear concussion protocol
While Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee was forced to leave Sunday’s contest after suffering a concussion, head coach Jason Garrett is optimistic that he won’t miss much time. Of course, until Lee clears the concussion protocol, that positivity won’t count for much.
6. Eric Ebron, tight end, Detroit Lions
- Injury: Knee injury
- Diagnosis: Questionable
Not only did the Detroit Lions suffer a controversial loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Monday night, but tight end Eric Ebron was forced to leave the game in the second quarter because of a knee injury. With the Lions already being thin at the tight end position, this has the potential to be a major loss.
7. Tyrunn Walker, defensive tackle, Detroit Lions
- Injury: “Significant” ankle injury
- Diagnosis: Likely out for the season
After being carted off the field during his team’s 13-10 defeat on Monday night , the outcome for Detroit Lions defensive tackle Tyrunn Walker is not good. Per head coach Jim Caldwell, Walker suffered a “significant” injury to his ankle. By the looks of it, he will likely be out for the rest of the season.