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The Early Lead
Posted at 11:33 AM ET, 09/13/2011

Dan Koppen joins a lengthy NFL Week 1 injury list that includes Willie Colon, Luis Castillo and 4 Denver Broncos


Dan Koppen is carted off. (J Pat Carter / AP)
The MVP so far in the NFL? The MRI machine.

New England Patriots center Dan Koppen is the latest in a line of players who’ve suffered significant injuries in this infant of a season. He was carted off in the Patriots’ victory over the Miami Dolphins after suffering ankle injury when several players ended up on his lower leg.

Koppen has plenty of company in the infirmary. The latest are Willie Colon of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Luis Castillo of the San Diego Chargers, who uffered serious injuries buthaven’t been declared out for the season yet. And, after the Raiders-Broncos game, four Denver playrs (Elvis Dumervil, Champ Bailey, Brandon Lloyd and Knowshon Moreno) were scheduled to undergo MRIs today.

Colon, according to his agent, is “likely” to go on the injured-reserve list. He’ll have surgery to repair a torn triceps today. Castillo reportedly has a broken tibia.

Koppen was hurt just before halftime and returned, on crutches, to watch the second half. There’s no word yet on how long he might be out or exactly what the injury he has. (The Patriots make the CIA look gabby.) Like every other team with early injuries, the Patriots are keeping their fingers crossed.

“He’s the best,’’ quarterback Tom Brady said of Koppen. “There’s no one like him. I think he and I have a great chemistry between the two of us and we always have. He’s one of my great friends and hopefully he’s back at some point.’’

By  |  11:33 AM ET, 09/13/2011

 
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