CHARGERS THURSDAY PRACTICE PARTICIPATION
All in all, the Chargers are heading into their first playoff game in 3 years relatively healthy. The only major injury concerns are Mathews and Royal not practicing again, but both are expected to play on Sunday.
Kendall Reyes was upgraded to full participation on Thursday, after being limited in practice yesterday with an ankle injury. Reyes suffered an injury late in the win against the Chiefs on Sunday, and was busy for most of Monday getting and MRI. After practicing today, I expect him to be a full participant on Friday and Sunday.
Missing practice again on Thursday was Ryan Mathews. Mathews has not practiced on Wednesday or Thursday for a couple week now due to precautionary measures, and will most likely practice on Friday and play again on Sunday. Eddie Royal should also be available on Sunday, despite not practicing again.
DE, Kendall Reyes (ankle)
DT, Sean Lissemore (shoulder)
WR, Eddie Royal (toe)
RB, Ryan Mathews (ankle)
BENGALS THURSDAY PRACTICE PARTICIPATION
The Same cannot be said for the Bengals. The Bengals are very banged up. 7 starters for the Bengals did not practice at all on Wednesday. Only 3 starters were held out entirely on Thursday, but 6 were still limited.
Among them were starting starting offensive linemen LT Anthony Collins (OUT), LG Andrew Whitworth (LP), C Kyle Cook (LP), and RT Andre Smith (LP). The injuries at offensive line for the Bengals bring back memories of our musical chairs at O-line the last time we played the Bengals. The Bengals could be facing the same problem that was a critical reason for our loss.
Also limited in practice after missing practice on Wednesday were starting WR AJ Green, TE Tyler Eifert, and TE Jermaine Gresham. Green was the leading receiver for the Bengals again this season, but Eifert and Gresham add a dimension that the Chargers have struggled to defend this season: size. Eifert (6’6″) and Gresham (6’5″) were both held out of the Bengals season finale against the Ravens, and the offense struggled. If the two tight ends are out again on Sunday or struggle due to injury, it would give the Chargers a huge advantage.
C, Kyle Cook (foot)
CB, Chris Crocker (knee)
TE, Tyler Eifert (neck)
DE, Wallace Gilberry (concussion)
WR, A.J. Green (knee)
TE, Jermaine Gresham (hamsting)
LB, Vincent Rey (ankle)
OT, Andre Smith (ankle)
OL, Andrew Whitworth (ankle)
OT, Anthony Collins (ankle)
CB, Terence Newman (knee)
CB, Dre Kirkpatrick (illness)