Antonio Gates, Stephen Cooper and Malcom Floyd all missed practice and all seem unlikely to play this weekend against the Cincinnati Bengals. Gates is expected to miss the rest of the regular season.
Cooper is the starting middle linebacker and will be missed in the lineup. He is the defensive captain and makes the calls in the defensive huddle. Cooper has missed 3 games this season and Brandon Siler took over the starting position in Cooper’s absence.
“He’s our captain for a reason,” linebacker Shaun Phillips said. “It’s always tough not having him in there, but we have capable guys like Brandon Siler, who’s played a lot of good football. There are 10 other guys on the field, as well. It means we all need to step up our game a little bit more.” – Kevin Acee
Larry English was able to join practice also and may be ready to go on Sunday.
Patrick Crayton was upgraded to full participation in practice, but he is not expected to play until next week against the Denver Broncos. The cold weather in Cincinnati seems to be part of the hesitation.
“I think that’s why they’re not letting me go, because of the cold and those pins are still in there,” Crayton said. “I don’t get them out for a couple of weeks. They say pins hurt in the cold weather.” – North County Times
Another reason for hesitation is the play of WR Kelley Washington. Washington has stepped in to the lineup with all the injuries at wide receiver and has played well.
“Guys that make plays get a chance to make more plays,” coach Norv Turner said. “We got in those situations where everyone was hurt and he’s a (special) teams guy and he went in and, next thing you know, he’s catching a ball and he’s running down the field with it. Then he’s catching another one.
“He’s made big plays in our last games.” – North County Times
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