Chargers wide receiver Malcom Floyd strained his right knee in a collision with cornerback Shareece Wright during practice on Monday.
The team confirmed the injury on Monday night, but didn’t release any other details. It’s believed the injury isn’t as serious as the one that sidelined the team’s other starter, Danario Alexander, for the season. Alexander tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee after he collided with Wright last Tuesday.
Floyd went down after the collision during one-on-one drills and was in obvious pain. At one point, several teammates knelt around Floyd as he was tended to by trainers.
Floyd had an MRI exam Monday evening.
Asked to describe the play, rookie coach Mike McCoy, who’s been loath to discuss injuries, said: ”I’m not going to get into all the little details of that. He went down. I’m not going to put it on any player or anything like that. He went down.”
Last Tuesday, McCoy downplayed the injury to Alexander in his post-practice news conference. A few hours later, the team announced Alexander had a torn ACL.
Floyd has been solid during his Chargers career but also has been slowed by injuries. He’s played in 16 games only once, in 2009. He missed two games with an ankle injury last year but still led the Chargers with a career-high 56 catches, for 814 yards and five touchdowns.
After Floyd got hurt, Eddie Royal and Vincent Brown were working with the first team. Royal was slowed by injuries last year, his first with San Diego, and Brown missed all of 2012 after breaking his left ankle in an exhibition game.
”It’s the bad part of the game, but it’s all part of it,” McCoy said. ”It gives other people opportunities, whatever the situation is, and they’ve got to step up. We’ll move on; see what happens.”
Quarterback Philip Rivers said it was a tough injury.
”You hate it happening to anybody, obviously, but Malcom, there’s not much better than him on and off the field,” he said. ”Obviously we don’t know the extent of the injury. It didn’t look good. There’s been a lot that didn’t look bad and ended up real bad and some that looked real bad and ended up OK. We’ll just hope for the best.”
Also Monday, rookie linebacker Manti Te’o said his sprained right foot is getting better. He was hurt in Thursday night’s exhibition loss to Seattle. McCoy said Te’o will be out this week, including Thursday night’s game at Chicago.
”I just stepped a little wrong. I just felt something at the end of the game so I went to get it checked,” Te’o said. ”When you’re in the middle of the game, you don’t really think about what’s going on.”
Te’o played in two series and didn’t have a tackle.
”I did all right. I didn’t do as well as I wanted to, but I think I did all right,” he said. ”It was my first time out there. It was OK. … It was good to get the first-game jitters out and now I can relax and just realize that it’s just football. As rookies, when you first get out there, no matter how much you try to relax, it’s something you’ve worked your whole life and to not be nervous is kind of impossible.”
Te’o said it’ll be disappointing missing the Bears game since it’s so close to Notre Dame.
”Anytime I don’t get to play it’s very disappointing, especially playing in Chicago and knowing a lot of people there, with Notre Dame being right there,” he said. ”It was definitely something I was looking forward to but thankfully coach McCoy allowed me to go so I’ll still be there. I just won’t be able to play.”
Running back Danny Woodhead, meanwhile, danced around several questions about the mysterious injury that has sidelined him. He did some work on the side on Monday.
”Honestly, I’m just doing everything coach is telling me and everything that I’m supposed to do and try to get better,” said Woodhead, who apparently learned the code of silence from Bill Belichick while playing for the New England Patriots the last three years. Now he’s playing for McCoy, who gets curt when asked about injuries.
Asked for an example of one thing he’s trying to get better at, Woodhead said: ”Being a better friend to Darrell Stuckey.”
Stuckey is a fourth-year safety.
Practice ended a few plays earlier than normal when star tight end Antonio Gates made a nice catch of a pass from Rivers.
”I made a little side bet with somebody if the last play worked, we’d take two to three plays out of practice,” McCoy said. ”We had a short yardage period and I said, if we hit the big one, we’ll cut it down, and Philip hit Antonio for the big play so we said, `That’s enough.”’
Asked who the bet was with, McCoy said, ”It doesn’t matter.”