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Baylor Football Injury News -- LB Aiavion Edwards, RB Devin Chafin possibly out for TCU

After losing one key contributor for the season in DE Jamal Palmer, could Phil Bennett's unit be down another against TCU on Saturday?

Brendan Maloney-USA TODAY Sports

I'm departing a bit from past injury update formats today to talk about three specific players that are either definitely injured or rumored to be.  The first is obvious, since we found out this weekend that he is out for the season:

DE Jamal Palmer -- OUT FOR SEASON

With 7:02 left in the third quarter against UT on Saturday, Baylor's starting LE Jamal Palmer apparently sustained a torn ACL, leaving the game after the following play.  That injury will end his junior season and means Baylor is now down one defensive starter the rest of the way.

To replace him, Phil Bennett will turn to sophomore Javonte Magee, who has played both DT and DE this year in relief of Beau Blackshear and Shawn Oakman, respectively.  Magee is a former 5* recruit from the 2012 class that has come on strong in recent weeks after missing all of last season due to personal issues.  In addition, Baylor will use Palmer's nominal backup, redshirt freshman K.J. Smith, and ODB's favorite mystery man, former LB-turned-DE Brian Nance, also a redshirt freshman.

To my knowledge nobody at Baylor has confirmed how these three will be used in Palmer's spot.  Speculation is that Magee will start and receive the majority of the playing time as a weapon against the run, a role in which he should excel due to his size, strength, and quickness.  On obvious passing downs, expect to see Magee move inside to DT or yield to one of Smith or Nance, especially since TCU RT Halapoulivaati Vaita seems to struggle against speed rushers.

I'm confident that by playing the situations correctly, Baylor can approximate Palmer's production with two of these three players.  In fact, given Magee's strengths, it wouldn't surprise me at all to see Baylor's defense actually improve against the inside run, though we haven't yet seen Magee operate on the edge against an athletic running QB, and that is absolutely a concern.  It's also worth watching how moving Magee out to DE affects our interior rotation at DT, since he received a lot of run behind/alongside Blackshear and someone else will have to assume that mantle, probably Trevor Clemons-Valdez, Byron Bonds, or Suleiman Masumbuko.


Almost immediately after the game, Baylor's sophomore bruiser tweeted his disappointment at getting into the game late only to re-injure the same ankle that kept him out for most of Baylor's first four games.  Briles confirmed the injury today to ESPN 1660's Craig Smoak and said it's something they will watch going forward this week.

The possibility of not having Chafin has apparently given rise to rumors that Baylor might burn the redshirt of true freshmen Terence Williams, so he can take on the role of power back in Baylor's offense.  As support for these rumors, people point to a tweet from Sunday where Williams said that he "can't wait" and posted a picture of himself during what I assume is practice.

Unless I've missed something else from Terence or Chafin's injury is much more significant than we've been told (such that it would keep him out for multiple games), I think people are overreacting.  I haven't seen any reason to think Baylor would burn his shirt rather than continue playing the Shock Linwood / Johnny Jefferson duo with Silas Nacita in reserve, although it is curious to me that Briles admitted after the game that Linwood's 28 carries was a few more than they'd like him to have.

LB Aiavion Edwards -- POSSIBLY OUT FOR TCU

The potential that Baylor's starting OLB might miss Saturday's game against TCU is the biggest news of the day, since it wasn't something that a lot of people (myself included) knew about beforehand.  According to Craig Smoak, Edwards sustained some kind of ankle injury against UT and sat out today's practice.  Baylor will watch him the rest of the week to see about his progress.

With all due respect to Taylor Young, Edwards' likely replacement, this would be a bigger loss to me than Palmer on the line.  I like Young and his playmaking ability, especially in the blitz.  If called upon to start, I know he would be prepared and capable, and that he would have the coaches' utmost confidence.  After watching the last couple of games, however, I strongly believe that Edwards has been one of Baylor's best players on defense from the OLB spot.  We knew going into the season that he had speed and athleticism, and after a few plays early on where he appeared to struggle, Edwards seems to have significantly improved each week.  In my opinion, losing him would be a serious blow to the defense, so I'm obviously hoping for a swift recovery and that he will be as close as possible to 100% on Saturday against the Frogs.

If you don't see Edwards, Young probably slides into that spot with redshirt freshman Raaquan Davis as his new backup.

I'll keep you guys posted on everything else going on this week.  As far as I am aware, we don't have any other injuries beyond bumps and bruises.