By Danny Cox

Some teams are heading to the playoffs and others are going to be on their way home after the final week of the season. Unfortunately, some teams are not going to be able to bring their best players with them into the post season due to serious injuries, and some injuries are serious enough to possibly sideline the players into next season.

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Tony Romo out for the rest of the season with back injury

Dallas Cowboys starting quarterback Tony Romo will not only miss the final game of the regular season, but also the playoffs, should the team get in. Romo has a herniated disk in the lumbar region of his back and will need to have surgery. The recovery time for Romo is said to be three to four months.

Kyle Orton is expected to get the start at quarterback for Dallas in a winner-take-all game against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night. The winner of the game will win the NFC East.

Jake Long tears both ACL and MCL in right knee, surgery set

The St. Louis Rams won’t be heading to the playoffs, but starting left tackle Jake Long won’t be playing in their final game either. Long tore both his ACL and MCL in his right knee this past weekend against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. It is expected that Long’s return for the start of the 2014 season is a complete and total long shot at this point.

There is optimism that Long will be back for the first game of next season, but that still remains to be seen, according to head coach Jeff Fisher.

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Packers linebacker Clay Matthews hand injury is worse than originally thought

All-star linebacker Clay Matthews of the Green Bay Packers has re-injured his right thumb and it appears to be much worse than originally thought. Matthews hurt it again in Sunday’s loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers and he is set to undergo medical evaluations this week.

Team doctors have already said that it is unlikely Matthews will be playing in the final game of the season against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. The Packers can clinch the NFC North with a win, but there has been no word on Matthews’ status if they get into the playoffs.

Denver’s Von Miller gone for rest of the year with torn ACL

The Denver Broncos vaunted defense will be without star linebacker Von Miller for the final game of the season and the playoffs as he is gone for the year. Miller tore the ACL in his right knee midway through the first quarter of this past Sunday’s 37-13 demolition of the Houston Texans.

Miller will undergo surgery in the next two to three weeks and face a recovery period of six to nine months. That will put him out for the Broncos OTAs and training camp. Miller only got to play nine games for the Broncos this season as he missed the first six games for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

For more NFL news and updates, visit NFL Central.

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Danny Cox knows a little something about the NFL, whether it means letting you know what penalty will come from the flag just thrown on the field or quickly spouting off who the Chicago Bears drafted in the first round of the 1987 draft (Jim Harbaugh). He plans on bringing you the best news, previews, recaps, and anything else that may come along with the exciting world of the National Football League. Danny is a freelance writer covering all things NFL. His work can be found on