Nick Chubb’s gruesome left knee injury will require surgery, a devastating blow for the Cleveland Browns star running back who will have to go through another arduous rehabilitation to continue playing.
Chubb sustained the season-ending injury in Monday night’s loss to the Steelers in Pittsburgh.
A four-time Pro Bowl selection in six seasons, Chubb got hurt when Steelers safety Minkah Fitzpatrick tackled him low on a carry in the second quarter. The impact buckled the same knee Chubb injured in 2015 at Georgia and had reconstructed.
Coach Kevin Stefanski confirmed that Chubb’s season is over. He did not provide any specifics on the severity of the injury or when Chubb will have the operation.
It’s possible Chubb, who likely torn several ligaments, will seek several medical opinions before moving forward.
“Very disappointed for Nick,” Stefanski said on a Zoom call. “He means a lot to this team, means a lot to this organization, so he will be missed. But he will bounce back. I have no doubt.”
As Cleveland tries to regroup after losing Chubb, the team brought in former Brown Kareem Hunt for a visit and workout Tuesday.
Hunt spent four seasons with Cleveland before leaving as a free agent in March, ending a strained final year with the Browns. The 28-year-old, who led the NFL in rushing with Kansas City in 2017, was unhappy with his contract and asked for a trade in 2022.
He played in all 17 games, but wasn’t the same dynamic player. He finished with 468 yards rushing and 210 receiving.
Hunt knows the Browns’ system, so he could quickly get up to speed if signed. The Browns host Tennessee on Sunday.
“You don’t replace Nick Chubb,” Stefanski said. “Great players in the league, you look around, they go out. It’s always not one person that replaces a player of his caliber, so everybody’s got to do a little bit more, got to do a little bit more everywhere.”
Saquon Barkley’s sprained right ankle is showing signs of improvement and Giants coach Brian Daboll refused to rule him out for a game against the 49ers on Thursday night.
“He’s a lot better than I thought he would be today,” Daboll said Tuesday.
Barkley hurt his ankle late in the fourth quarter Sunday against the Cardinals when he was tackled after a short run on the winning field goal drive. He had to be helped to the bench.
Daboll said on Tuesday that Barkley has a sprained ankle. There was speculation the 26-year-old running back would be out up to three weeks.
Daboll said Barkley has made considerable progress, adding “he feels a lot better today.”
Hall nominees announced
Three-time All-Pros Julius Peppers and Antonio Gates headline the list of nine first-year eligible players picked among the 173 nominees for the 2024 class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
The other first-year eligibles are receivers Brandon Marshall and Jordy Nelson; running back Jamaal Charles; offensive linemen T.J. Lang, Josh Sitton, and Max Unger; and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata.
The nine new candidates combined for 42 Pro Bowl berths, 12 first-team All-Pro selections, with five of the nine winning Super Bowls and Peppers and Gates making all-decade teams. Peppers also won the Defensive Rookie of the Year award in 2002 and Nelson was picked as Comeback Player of the Year in 2016.
The overall list of Hall of Fame finalists will be reduced to 25 semifinalists in November and to 15 finalists in January before the selection committee discusses and chooses the class of 2023 that will be enshrined in August.
Finalists from 2022 renominated for next year are Devin Hester, Torry Holt, Andre Johnson, Reggie Wayne, Willie Anderson, Jared Allen, Dwight Freeney, Patrick Willis, and Darren Woodson.
Thompson done for year
Panthers linebacker Shaq Thompson has a broken right leg and is expected to miss the remainder of the season, according to coach Frank Reich. Thompson underwent surgery on Tuesday to fix a fractured fibula he sustained in the first quarter of Monday night’s loss to the Saints. He has been placed on injured reserve. Reich said it’s hard to put into words how much Thompson brings to the team, calling him a team player and “a warrior, a guy who knows how to practice.” Thompson has four 100-tackle seasons in nine years with the Panthers and is considered the team’s emotional leader on defense . . . The Vikings signed former Broncos guard Dalton Risner to try to shore up what has been a problematic position for several seasons. Risner visited the Vikings for a workout during training camp. Drafted in the second round out of Kansas State in 2019, Risner started 62 games in four years for the Broncos. He became a free agent and had been unsigned. To make room on the active roster, the Vikings placed tackle Oli Udoh on injured reserve with a torn quadriceps tendon he suffered in the Week 2 loss to the Eagles.