Ladies and gentlemen the NFL is back. Each and every week players across the league suffer injuries and week 1 was no different. This weekly article will explore the injuries that affect your dynasty squads. We will briefly discuss both the injured players themselves and the players who stand to benefit or suffer as a result. In order to make them easier to follow we will break down the injuries by division. Without further ado let us examine the Week 1 injuries and the next men up.
- Miami WR Albert Wilson reaggravated the calf injury that limited him during the preseason. Miami has the looks of a true dumpster fire this year. Wilson has been one of my favorite sleepers for the year due to Miami’s likely negative game script and lack of talent around him. However, if Wilson is unable to get healthy the role of check-down king could fall to Jakeem Grant. Expect Wilson to be back in short order and gobbling up underneath looks on possibly the worst team in the league this year.
- In one of the most devastating injuries of opening weekend, Jaguars QB Nick Foles broke his left collarbone. This is going to be a tough obstacle for Jacksonville to overcome. The absence of Foles will mean a downgrade for all of the Jaguars skill players. Rookie 6th round pick Gardner Minshew will likely get the nod until Foles returns. A player who was deemed by some as a poor man’s Baker Mayfield, Minshew should be added in all Superflex leagues. He showed an immediate connection with DJ Chark who could see a slight bump if the chemistry rings true going forward.
- Colts WR Devin Funchess broke his collarbone in week 1. In a corresponding move, the Colts placed the WR on IR. He will be out for a minimum of 8 weeks following the injury. His absence will create an opening for rookie receiver Parris Campbell, as well as Deon Cain and Chester Rogers.
- Cleveland’s Dontrell Hilliard suffered a possible concussion in the team’s week one contest. Hilliard does not have a lengthy concussion history and will likely be back in short order. Cleveland will look to rebound from an ugly week 1 performance next week. Expect a heavy dose of Nick Chubb in Week 2 against the Jets on Monday Night Football. If Hilliard is unable to gain clearance with the additional day’s rest, look for former AAF player D’Ernest Johnson to fill the backup role.
- Cincinnati RB Joe Mixon injured his ankle forcing him from the team’s Week 1 contest. At this time the specifics of the injury are not known. All that we know is that Mixon was unable to get back into the game following the injury. In his absence, Gio Bernard handled literally all of the work. Cincinnati is woefully thin at the position at the moment. Perhaps Trayveon Williams will be rushed back from his foot ailment to back up Bernard if Mixon is forced to miss any time. Hopefully, this is not the dreaded high ankle sprain which could potentially cost Mixon multiple games. This is truly a situation to monitor.
- Pittsburgh WR Juju Smith-Schuster injured his toe late in the team’s game against the Patriots. He will undergo precautionary x-rays on his toe but the team does not believe the injury to be a major concern. If he were to miss time look for Diontae Johnson to fill in the gaps between James Washington and Donte Moncrief.
- Kansas City WR Tyreek Hill injured his shoulder and was forced from the teams week 1 contest. After undergoing tests on his collarbone at the local hospital, it was revealed that he had sustained a sternoclavicular joint injury. Hill won’t need surgery and has avoided a broken collarbone. However, it appears the injury will come with a multi-week recovery timetable. Hills absence will present an opportunity for Sammy Watkins to build upon his monster week 1 performance. You can also look for rookie WR Mecole Hardman and other depth pieces including running backs to pick up the slack in the receiving game.
- Washington RB Darrius Guice suffered a meniscus injury in the team’s opener. The more things change the more they stay the same. Guice will not require surgery but will be forced to miss some games as he attempts to get his right knee healthy. His absence will likely mean Adrian Peterson’s return to a game-day role with the squad. Keep an eye on how Guice recovers from his latest knee ailment. Injuries to both knees in successive seasons is troublesome, to say the least.
- Giant’s WR Sterling Shepard suffered a concussion in his team opening week loss to division rival Dallas. Shepard had just come back from his preseason broken thumb and had a decent first game. If he is unable to gain clearance look for Evan Engram to be an even bigger part of the passing game if that is possible. Cody Latimer, Bennie Fowler, and potentially Darius Slayton would fill out the WR depth chart in Shepard’s absence.
- The NFL South made it out of the opening weekend in relatively good order from a fantasy perspective.
- The NFL North escaped week 1 without any major fantasy-relevant injuries.
- San Francisco RB Tevin Coleman suffered a high ankle sprain forcing him from the team’s Week 1 matchup. Fellow RB Matt Breida was also banged up during the game. In his absence, special teams ace Raheem Mostert will pick up more run with the offense. Mostert was the most effective out of the team’s RBs in week 1 and could be a nice speculative add across leagues. Mostert looked good in his limited time last year before a gruesome broken arm ended his season. Despite the injury, and the loaded RB room, San Francisco gave Mostert a lucrative multi-year contract. Keep an eye on how this situation plays out.
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