Diggs suffered bruised kidney

A shellshocked group of Green Bay Packers gathered at Lambeau Field on Monday, a day after absorbing their shocking drubbing at the hands of the Philadelphia Eagles. One member of the team, however, was not there.

Starting linebacker Na'il Diggs suffered a bruised kidney during the second quarter of Sunday's game, according to Packers coach Mike Sherman. Diggs was taken to a Philadelphia hospital during the game but flew home with the team that night. He spent Monday in a Green Bay hospital for observation and tests, the results of which were not available.

Sherman said he expected Diggs to rejoin the team Tuesday, but called him questionable for Sunday's game against Detroit. If Diggs' kidney is only bruised, there is a chance he could play. If the tests reveal a laceration, however, Diggs' season likely would be finished. Sherman sounded prepared for the worst.

"We have a concern, obviously," said Sherman. "I am concerned about him as a person and an athlete. We will be cautious with him and just play it by ear. We have to take it day by day with him and see where he ends up at the end of the week."

Diggs, who tallied two tackles at Philadelphia to push his season total to a second-on-the-team 101, incurred the injury when he made a diving attempt at a tackle and landed on his elbow, which pushed into his kidney. He was replaced by Paris Lenon for the remainder of the game, and Lenon would replace Diggs on Sunday.

"I prepare myself every week just like a starter," said Lenon. "As a backup player, you always have to be ready. I'm definitely hoping for the best for him. But if I'm called upon to play, I'm going to have to step up and get the job done."

Meanwhile, the Packers might have to start their third center of the season. Grey Ruegamer — the replacement for injured Pro Bowler Mike Flanagan — sprained his ankle in the second quarter and did not return. In his place was rookie seventh-round pick Scott Wells. Ruegamer, like Diggs, is listed as questionable, so Wells may be in line for his first career start.

"I have a lot of room for improvement," Wells said after getting his first taste of regular-season game action. "A lot of the things I messed up come with experience and there's only one way to get experience and that's game time. I was kind of thrown into a fire there, I think I responded decent, not good enough."

The only glaring flub, in Sherman's estimation, was Wells' shotgun snap that sailed over the head of Packers quarterback Brett Favre. The ball bounced right to Favre, who was able to throw the ball away to avoid a disaster.

"I got a little too excited on that play and actually gripped it a little too much," said Wells. "Brett just kind of laughed about it. He said there's not a center in the league who hasn't done that."

Getting more than a half of a game under his belt will make a potential starting debut much easier, Wells said.

"Oh, I'll be ready, definitely, especially if I have a week to prepare in practice," said Wells. "When you're a backup, you don't get a whole lot of practice reps. It's one thing to prepare for a game on paper. It's another thing to get those reps."

Also banged up Sunday were backup tackle Kevin Barry (thigh), running back Najeh Davenport (ribs) and safety Bhawoh Jue (concussion). Barry is not expected to practice Wednesday, the first day of the practice week, while Jue should be fine, Sherman said.


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