Is Derrick Henry playing vs. Bengals? Latest updates on Titans RB’s possible playoff return

The Titans are coming off their bye week and preparing to play for the first time during the 2022 NFL playoffs. They face a big question ahead of their Saturday afternoon matchup against the Bengals.

Can Derrick Henry play?

The Titans’ star running back has been out since suffering a broken foot in Tennessee’s Week 8 win over the Colts. Initial reports indicated that Henry could miss the remainder of the season as a result of the injury, but it was later revealed that he could return to action in six to 10 weeks if all went well.

A 10-week timeline would have put Henry on track to play in the team’s final regular-season game against the Texans. That didn’t quite happen, but by virtue of the Titans’ first-round bye, he got an extra two weeks to rehab and prepare to return during the playoffs.

Is Henry ready to take the field with the Titans? Here’s everything you need to know about his status ahead of the Titans’ divisional round matchup against the Bengals.

Will Derrick Henry play this week?

As of Wednesday morning, the Titans have yet to announce if Henry will be activated from IR to face the Bengals. However, this week he is practicing with the team and coach Mike Vrabel said it was an important milestone for him in his recovery.

“I think it’s a good step for him to have contact,” Vrabel said of Henry during a news conference Tuesday. “It’s been a while since he’s had contact and he’s had to do these things that come close to replicating what’s going to be asked of him.” of him at a football game.

Vrabel also acknowledged that the Titans may not make an official decision on Henry’s status until later in the week, after seeing how he feels during practice.

“We’ll have a week to work, see how he feels and make a decision,” Vrabel said.

The Titans designated Henry to return from IR before their Week 18 game against the Texans. That opened up his 21-day practice window to return from IR.

Henry must be officially activated on the Titans’ 53-man roster at the end of his 21-day practice window if he wants to return during the 2022 NFL playoffs. As such, the Titans must believe he is close to playing. Otherwise, they would have postponed that action.

It sounds like Henry is really questionable for this week, but we should know more about his status — and potential workload — as Saturday’s game approaches. If Henry can’t play, D’Onta Foreman and Dontrell Hilliard will be asked to carry the Titans’ load, as they have for most of the second half of the season.

What is Derrick Henry’s injury?

Henry suffered a broken foot during the Titans’ 34-31 win over the Colts. It’s unclear exactly at what point in the game Henry was injured, but he did break the fifth metatarsal in his right foot. That type of injury is known as a Jones fracture, and it comes with a reported recovery time of six to 10 weeks.

Derrick Henry Stats 2021

Before his injury, Henry was arguably the best running back in the NFL. He was leading the league in rushing (219), rushing yards (937), and rushing touchdowns (10) at the time of the injury.

Despite missing more than half the season, Henry finished with the ninth-most rushing yards in the NFL. He led the league in rushing yards per game with a mark of 117.1. The only other player with 100+ rushing yards per game was Colts star Jonathan Taylor (106.5).

Below is a look at Henry’s stats for the 2021 season and where he ranked among other running backs:

Statistics Total Range (between RB)
carries 219 10
running yards 937 9
Rush TD 10 T-6th
yards per carry 4.3 19
rushing yards per game 117.1 1st

And here’s where he ranks in the top 10 NFL running backs of the 2021 NFL season:

Rank Player Team running yards
one jonathan taylor foals 1,811
two nick chubb browns 1,259
3 joe mixon Bengalis 1,205
4 najee harris steelmakers 1200
5 dalvin cook vikings 1,159
6 anthony gibson Washington 1,037
7 Ezekiel Elliott Cowboys 1,002
8 Elijah Mitchell 49ers 963
9 derrick henry titans 937
10 Damian Harris patriots 929