Shane Vereen, New York Giants, concussion, (Q): As the week progressed it appeared Vereen was making progress through the concussion protocol, participating on a limited basis each day. On Saturday he received the final clearance from the independent neurological consultant and he is expected to play Sunday.
Matt Asiata, Minnesota Vikings, ankle, (Q): Asiata’s status appears to be truly in question after he was downgraded to a nonparticipant in Friday’s practice.
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Dre Kirkpatrick Game Jersey He had been a full participant both Wednesday and Thursday and the move Friday came as a surprise. If Asiata is active, there could be three backs available for the Vikings as Adrian Peterson is expected back Sunday, just over 12 weeks removed from a lateral meniscus repair (normal recovery is in the four-to-six month window).
Matthew Stafford’s finger is definitely a concern, but he has led the Lions to fourth-quarter comeback wins in eight of their nine victories, so why can’t he come back from a finger issue? The story of this game to me is that both defenses are quietly playing better than expected. Neither team can really run the ball, so expect this to be a close, low-scoring game. I like Detroit by a field goal.
The Chiefs don’t score a lot, but their defense is strong, even with Derrick Johnson lost for the season. Kansas City will be motivated by a shot to still be the top seed in the AFC. It’s time for the Chiefs to make Harry Houdini inactive for this one and just claim a normal win. The front seven will be the difference here.