Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton was placed on an injured reserve with a right thumb injury suffered in Sunday's 35-20 loss to Cleveland.
Jeff Driskel will make his first NFL start against Denver this week in place of Dalton, and the team has called on quarterback Tom Savage to waive the San Francisco 49ers' exemptions to back Driskel.
Dalton was injured in the fourth play of the third quarter after a center-shot by Billy Price was thrown over his head. Dalton ran to retrieve the ball and tried to pick it up, but the Browns recovered it. Dalton immediately went to the sideline and entered the locker room with athletic trainers and did not return.
Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said Sunday night that the initial scans did not show anything serious enough for Dalton to miss the rest of the season. Your year, however, is already finished.
Dalton has not missed a game since the 2015 season, when he tried to make a tackle after throwing an interception against the Steelers and broke his right thumb. Although Dalton avoided surgery, he did not return that season, losing the last three games of the regular season and the AFC wild card game. AJ McCarron, who is now with the Raiders, replaced him.
Driskel completed 17 of 29 passes for 155 yards and a touchdown in the middle of football after replacing Dalton. The Bengals have kept Driskel since retiring from the Niners in 2016. He was the third quarterback of that season and spent the 2017 season in IR.
"I always knew I could play at this level," said Driskel. "I would not be here if I could not, but the more you come out and the more you play well, the more confidence you will have in you and in the people around you." I just have to keep doing what I'm doing and keep playing well and give the team the chance to win. "
The list of the Bengals has been decimated by injuries this season. Tight end Tyler Eifert, linebacker Preston Brown, defensive tackle Ryan Glasgow and defensive end Carl Lawson finished in IR, but linebacker Nick Vigil and catcher A.J. The greens have lost so much extended time. Left tackle Cordy Glenn and cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick are injured and can not play.
The Bengals started 4-1 and had a 73 percent chance of making the playoffs after Week 5, by FPI. Since then they have a 1 to 5 mark and have seen their chances of an FPI playoff drop to 4 percent.