NFL Injuries: Backups Who Will Thrive in Starter's Absence

Mike MoraitisAnalyst IDecember 1, 2012

JACKSONVILLE, FL - NOVEMBER 25: Rashad Jennings #23 and Cecil Shorts III #84 of the Jacksonville Jaguars celebrate after the game against the Tennessee Titans at EverBank Field on November 25, 2012 in Jacksonville, Florida  (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

Injuries are the norm each and every week in the NFL, and Week 13 will be no different as many teams will see their starters in the trainer's room, leaving it up to backups to fill the void.

Here are some key players who have already been ruled out for this weekend's action, and the backups that will replace them.

All injury status information is courtesy of


Philadelphia Eagles

RB LeSean McCoy, Out (Concussion)

Replacement: Bryce Brown

LeSean McCoy will have to sit out yet another game thanks to a concussion, leaving the bulk of the carries to the rookie, Bryce Brown.

In his first start since high school, Brown didn't disappoint and had a monster first half against the Carolina Panthers. Brown carried the ball nine times for 129 yards and a score, finishing the game with 178 yards and two touchdowns.

Brown even showed his ability to break the big one after a 65-yard touchdown run.

In Week 13, Brown will be faced with the task of producing solid numbers against the Dallas Cowboys, who are ranked No. 13 against the run this season. Dallas is allowing 110 yards per game on the ground, so there's a great chance Brown breaks the 100-yard mark in this game.

The only concern for Brown is his knack for fumbling the ball, which he showed twice last week against Carolina. Still, that won't overshadow the fact that Brown has the ability to put up big numbers.


Jacksonville Jaguars

RB Maurice Jones-Drew, Out (Foot)

Replacement: Rashad Jennings

 With Maurice Jones-Drew due to spend Week 13 in the trainer's room, Rashad Jennings will get another opportunity to prove his worth to the Jaguars.

When Jennings has gotten an opportunity to start this season, he hasn't exactly made the most of it. Jennings has yet to break the 60-yard mark this season and has only reached the end zone twice.

However, there is hope that this week will be different for the Jags' backup turned starter.

Jennings has proved to be a viable option to catch the ball out of the backfield earlier this season after gaining 58 and 56 yards through the air against the Oakland Raiders and Green Bay Packers, respectively.

Having the ability to catch the ball gives Jennings a chance to still produce a good amount even if he doesn't gain a lot of yards on the ground. And to help his cause, Jennings will be up against the Buffalo Bills in Week 13, who are ranked No. 31 against the run and No. 18 against the pass.


Minnesota Vikings

WR Percy Harvin, Out (Ankle)

Replacement: Jarius Wright

Percy Harvin will not make the trip with the Vikings as they head to Green Bay to take on the Packers, so that leaves Jarius Wright lining up across the field from Jerome Simpson in his place.

Wright has been quiet this season as his targets have been limited thanks to multiple receivers being ahead of him on the depth chart. But this week will allow Wright to prove he can play, as he figures to get more targets with Harvin out.

On the season, Wright has 10 receptions for 114 yards and a touchdown. Wright has also shown that he can make a big play with his season-high reception being for 54 yards, which leads the team.

The Vikings haven't been much of a passing offense this season, as they are ranked No. 30 in the NFL in that department, but that should be helped this week, as the Packers are ranked No. 22 against the pass.