Kirk Cousins, Matthew Stafford, Kenny Pickett and Tyrod Taylor were the latest quarterbacks to go down with injuries.
Cousins’ injury is likely the worst of the bunch. Minnesota Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell said the team fears the four-time Pro Bowl QB hurt his Achilles tendon — and if an MRI confirms the tendon is torn, Cousins' season would be over.
The 35-year-old veteran, who has never missed a game to injury, limped to the sideline after suffering the non-contact injury in the fourth quarter of a 24-10 win at Green Bay on Sunday. He then was carted to the locker room.
“I do know that it is going to have to be an injury that makes him not capable physically of playing because if it has anything to do with pain tolerance or a choice to go out on the football field, Kirk Cousins is going to be out on the field,” O'Connell said. "We will figure out the severity of it and let you guys know what my fear of is right now of the injury. When we confirm that as an organization we will try to move forward in the short term knowing that I’m not sure anybody in this league overall was playing as well as Kirk at the position this year.”
The Vikings could struggle to match Cousins' production with the other quarterbacks on their roster. Jaren Hall, a rookie fifth-round pick from BYU, replaced him on Sunday. Minnesota has veteran Nick Mullens on injured reserve and Sean Mannion on its practice squad.
Stafford couldn’t finish a lopsided loss at Dallas because of a thumb injury. He also bloodied his elbow catching a 2-point conversion in the Rams’ 43-20 loss to the Cowboys. Rams coach Sean McVay said he didn’t know the extent of Stafford's injury.
Pickett and Taylor both injured ribs.
Pickett left Pittsburgh’s game in the first half after taking a hard shot from Jaguars defensive end Adam Gotsis. Backup Mitch Trubisky threw two interceptions and the Steelers lost 20-10 to visiting Jacksonville. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin didn't have an update on Pickett's injury.
Taylor was taken to a hospital to be evaluated after injuring his ribs in the first half of the New York Giants’ 13-10 overtime loss to the Jets. The team said Taylor would remain hospitalized overnight.
Taylor started his third game for Daniel Jones, who has been sidelined by a neck injury.
Tommy DeVito, an undrafted rookie out of Illinois and Syracuse and a New Jersey native, replaced Taylor and threw just one pass in regulation. He scored on a 6-yard touchdown run that gave the Giants a lead in the third quarter and finished 2 of 7 for minus-1 yard.
Atlanta’s Desmond Ridder was evaluated for a concussion and cleared, but the Falcons switched to Taylor Heinicke in the third quarter of a 28-23 loss at Tennessee. Coach Arthur Smith said he held Ridder out as a precaution.
“I’m going to listen to the medical experts and see how this week goes,” Smith said when asked which quarterback will start next week.
Titans rookie Will Levis threw four TDs in his NFL debut filling in for Ryan Tannehill, who has an ankle injury.
Several QBs played through injuries. Jalen Hurts, who wore a knee brace in the second half of last week’s game, threw four TDs in a 38-31 win at Washington. Brock Purdy started for the 49ers against Cincinnati after suffering a concussion last Monday.
The Browns, who played at Seattle, were again without Deshaun Watson because of a shoulder injury.
Gardner Minshew made his fourth start for Indianapolis in a 38-27 loss to visiting New Orleans. Colts rookie Anthony Richardson had season-ending shoulder surgery earlier this month.
The Jets lost four-time MVP Aaron Rodgers to a torn Achilles tendon in the first quarter in Week 1. Joe Burrow has started every game for the Bengals but struggled throughout September with a calf injury that forced him to miss training camp.
AP Pro Football Writer Teresa M. Walker in Nashville, Tennessee, contributed to this report.
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