Widnes Vikings have confirmed Joe Mellor dislocated his shoulder against Leeds Rhinos and will undergo further scans to ascertain the full extent of the damage.
The 23-year-old sustained the blow in the second half of Friday's 38-4 loss at Headingley and he is now facing a lengthy spell out.
Wigan's Greg Burke recently suffered a dislocated shoulder while on loan at Bradford Bulls and he is expected to be sidelined for at least two months.
The news of Mellor's impending absence is a blow to Dennis Betts after Widnes won their opening three games prior to losing to Leeds.
"We took a lot of knocks," Betts said. "The biggest one is that Joe Mellor has dislocated his shoulder and will have to have scans on that. It's a blow. Danny Tickle had a dead leg too. It was a tough game."
The Vikings had hopes of an upset in Friday's clash and Betts has admitted the team have learned the hard way where they need to improve to challenge the top four.
"It's a really tough score line. I thought we could have got a couple of scores on the board (in the first-half) but Leeds showed plenty of character in stopping us from getting over the try line," he continued.
"We came in at half-time not overly confident but we felt we could get over their try line with the wind behind us (in the second-half).
"It was tough to take in that second-half but the quality of Leeds really shone through. That's probably the best they have played all year in the second-half.
"Some of the tries they scored were fantastic. We never believed we were as good as what people were saying but we aren't as bad as that score line dictates. It's a lesson learned."
Five rounds in which team has surprised you the most in Super League 2014?