Back in­jury may end Watt’s sea­son

Baltimore Sun - - NFL & RAVENS -

A per­son fa­mil­iar with J.J. Watt’s con­di­tion says he has rein­jured his back and the Tex­ans ex­pect him to be out un­til at least De­cem­ber, and pos­si­bly the en­tire sea­son.

The per­son spoke to the Associated Press on Tues­day on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause the team hasn’t con­firmed the in­jury.

Watt missed train­ing camp and the Tex­ans’ four pre­sea­son games af­ter surgery in July to re­pair a her­ni­ated disk in his back. He re­turned to start each of the team’s three reg­u­larsea­son games and got hurt again Thurs­day against the Pa­tri­ots.

It’s un­clear if the in­jury will re­quire surgery.

Watt, who has won De­fen­sive Player of the Year the past two sea­sons, didn’t prac­tice Mon­day, but coach Bill O’Brien said then he was just get­ting a day off.

NFL.com first re­ported the news. J.J. Watt Pats get QBs back: Jimmy Garop­polo and rookie Ja­coby Bris­sett were both in uni­form as the Pa­tri­ots went back to the prac­tice field.

Which one of them will be at quar­ter­back when the team hosts the Bills on Sun­day re­mains a mys­tery at this point.

Garop­polo missed last week’s game against Tex­ans with a throw­ing-shoul­der in­jury that oc­curred dur­ing the sec­ond quar­ter of the Pa­tri­ots’ win over the Dol­phins on Sept. 18.

In Garop­polo’s ab­sence, Bris­sett, a third-round pick, suc­cess­fully led the Pa­tri­ots (3-0) past the Tex­ans in his first ca­reer start but suf­fered an ap­par­ent right thumb in­jury some­time dur­ing the sec­ond half.

It’s all added more in- trigue as the Pa­tri­ots pre­pare for their fi­nal game be­fore the re­turn of Tom Brady from his four-game “De­flate­gate” sus­pen­sion. Nei­ther Garop­polo nor Bris­sett was avail­able to the me­dia Tues­day.

Bris­sett didn’t have any cov­er­ings on his thumb and could be seen both tex­ting with the thumb and us­ing it to lace up his cleats. But later at prac­tice he did have tape on his thumb and wrist as he stretched.

Garop­polo didn’t have any vis­i­ble braces or ban­dages on his shoul­der.

Coach Bill Belichick de­flected ques­tions on the sta­tus of his quar­ter­backs ear­lier this week, de­fer­ring to the man­dated in­jury re­port which will be avail­able for the first time this week to­day. Pan­thers add safety: The Pan­thers signed two-time Pro Bowl se­lec­tion Michael Grif­fin to a one-year deal to add depth at safety.

Grif­fin, the 19th pick of the 2007 draft, was re­leased by the Ti­tans af­ter nine sea­sons. He signed with the Vik­ings in March but was placed on in­jured re­serve with a back in­jury when fi­nal cuts were made.

The 31-year-old was re­leased with an in­jury set­tle­ment a few days later. Ex­tra points: The Bears signed for­mer Lions RB Joique Bell to add depth af­ter starter Jeremy Lang­ford in­jured his an­kle dur­ing Sun­day night’s loss to the Cow­boys. Also, the Bears placed CB Kyle Fuller (Mount Saint Joseph) on IR. He had arthro­scopic knee surgery dur­ing the pre­sea­son. ... The Fal­cons ex­pect WR Mo­hamed Sanu to be avail­able Sun­day against the Pan­thers, ESPN re­ported. Sanu suf­fered a shoul­der in­jury Mon­day.

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