“Walking Dead” fans should definitely be worried about Rick Grimes when the AMC series returns for its fourth season this fall. Photos from the Georgia set have leaked online, and it appears that the Sheriff has suffered a potentially gruesome injury.

The leaked season-four photos can be found on “Walking Dead” Facebook fan page, DEAD TALK. The pictures show Rick and Carol with some supplies in their trunk, and Rick is crouched on the side of the road. While the shots initially don’t look too interesting or “spoiler-y,” a closer look at Rick’s hands will definitely have fans in a tizzy: His right hand is bandaged.

If we look to the graphic novels for clues, Rick’s hand could have been injured in either of two situations. In the comic books, Rick breaks and mutilates his hand in the prison when he attacks a character named Thomas as he believes the man murdered Hershel’s two youngest daughters, and attempted to murder Andrea. While Rick doesn’t kill Thomas, the group does decide to hang him. However, before they can go through with it, a woman named Patricia lets him out of a cell. Maggie ends up shooting him multiple times, and while the group debates what to do with Patricia, a separate group in the prison tries to force Rick’s group out.  

The AMC TV series doesn’t exactly follow the comics, but if Rick’s group was kicked out of the prison after a fight, that could be why the car is packed with supplies. Another possible explanation for Rick’s injury is that his hand was chopped off; in the graphic novels, the Governor chops off Rick’s hand when he refuses to tell him where his group his hiding out.

While that doesn’t follow the current timeline of events on the TV show, the Governor IS still lurking out there. As creator Robert Kirkman explained, they still have plans for the Governor in season four. “We always knew that it was a bigger story than would fit into one season,” Kirkman said to TVLine after the season-three finale. “There’s still a lot more to be done with this guy. We’ve known from the very first minute of season three that we would be keeping the Governor around for a while.”

Judging by Kirkman’s slight spoilers for the upcoming season, we’re leaning more toward the theory that Rick was injured vs. his hand being chopped off. In 2011 Kirkman told reporters at San Diego’s Comic Con that he didn’t think they should cut the character’s hand off on television.

“When I’m writing a comic book, I don’t think about what I’m doing,” he dished. “I go, ‘Oh, it’d be pretty cool if they cut his hand off right now. That’d be pretty shocking, right?’ Then I do it, and five issues later, I write, ‘Rick opens a can of beans,’ and then I look at the script and think ‘He can’t do that now.’ I don’t even think that through.”

Assuming Kirkman sticks to his 2011 comment about Rick’s hand, another comment he made to TVLine in April can’t be ignored. The creator said that Rick’s group will definitely “start” season four at the prison. “We may be there the whole season and we may not be … But there are going to be some big differences from season three.” Was Robert Kirkman hinting that the group could potentially be kicked out of the prison?

“The Walking Dead” returns to AMC for its fourth season this fall. What would you like to see happen in the new season? Let us know in the comments section.