No. 1 overall pick Jadeveon Clowney had a setback with his surgically repaired right knee and said Thursday that his chances of playing for Houston at Tennessee on Sunday are slim.
Clowney has played just four games this season after being injured in Week 1. The outside linebacker, who had arthroscopic surgery Sept. 8, was in for about 50 plays last Sunday in his most significant action since his injury.
He experienced swelling in his knee after the game and hasn't practiced all week. On Thursday he acknowledged for the first time just how much his knee is hurting him.
"A lot of pain right now," Clowney said of his knee. "Just been bothering me off and on the whole season. It's something you've got to push through, but when the swelling came up it's a little setback."
Coach Bill O'Brien said the team will likely decide if he'll play right before the game Sunday.
Clowney missed six straight games before returning Oct. 26. He sat out the next week with an illness before playing the last two. He had three tackles, including one for a loss, in a loss to the Bengals on Sunday.
Fitzgerald backtracks on ability to play
Arizona's Larry Fitzgerald said it's "highly likely" he will be able to play Sunday against Atlanta, then backtracked and said it's not his call.
The eight-time Pro Bowl wide receiver has not practiced for two weeks after spraining his left knee in a victory over Detroit. He sat out last week's loss at Seattle, snapping a streak of 110 consecutive games played.
It was just the fifth game he has missed in his 10-plus NFL seasons. Fitzgerald, who holds virtually every Cardinals receiving record, has missed consecutive games only once, when a hamstring injury sidelined him for three games in a row in 2006.
"I can't even remember the last time I missed a game before that," he said on Thursday. "I didn't know what the routine was, what I was supposed to do. It was just really awkward, to be there but not being able to do anything to help your team. That was frustrating."
The Cardinals lost at Seattle 19-3, snapping a six-game winning streak. Arizona has not scored a touchdown in seven quarters.