Week 1 Fantasy Football Injury Recap
As The Fantasy Footballers’ injury analyst and sports physical therapist, the majority of my content will cover injuries in the NFL. All season long, I’ll be recapping the previous week’s injuries and giving a projected timeline for recovery.
Fractured Clavicle: IR- out at least 8 weeks
The Jaguars paid big money for Foles to come down to Jacksonville and take over under center. They’ll be without their big offseason acquisition after Foles fractured his clavicle (collarbone) in his left non-throwing shoulder. On his deep TD pass to D.J. Chark, the defender landed on top of Foles, driving his left shoulder into the ground, a classic mechanism of injury for a broken collarbone. His injury requires surgery, which is actually beneficial for an earlier return. Because this is his non-throwing shoulder, Foles will be able to return sooner than if this had been to his right shoulder. Expect Foles to be out for at least 6 weeks with the potential for up to eight weeks. Rookie, Gardner Minshew, who entered the game in relief, will start moving forward.
Sternoclavicular Injury: out at least 6 weeks
Tyreek Hill injured his left shoulder along the sideline on Sunday and was carted to the locker room after landing on the shoulder. After being examined in the locker room, Hill had to be taken to a local hospital for further examination and treatment. Upon further examination, the medical staff must have determined that he suffered a posterior (backwards) subluxation/dislocation of the clavicle on the sternum. Pictures are included below for a more detailed description. Basically, when this happens, there is concern for compromise of the major blood vessels exiting the heart, directly behind the clavicle. Per Chiefs head athletic trainer, Rick Burkholder, Hill’s injury did not cause any blood vessel injury, but this is still a serious situation. Fortunately, Hill won’t require surgery but owners should plan to be without Hill for several weeks. Early reports indicate that he will miss “a few weeks” but this is very optimistic. Hill will be at a high risk of reinjury if he returns too early.
Left High Ankle Sprain: week to week
Mahomes got his left leg caught in a pile of defenders while being taken to the turf, causing his ankle to bend awkwardly in the wrong direction. After getting his ankle taped on the sideline, he returned to finish the game. Once the adrenaline wears off, Mahomes will be battling swelling and pain this week. Don’t be surprised to see him miss a couple of days of practice, but Mahomes should be fine to play next week. Because of the ankle injury, Mahomes’ mobility in and out of the pocket may be negatively affected.
Other players impacted: Travis Kelce, Sammy Watkins, Mecole Hardman
Ankle Sprain: out multiple weeks
Tevin Coleman left Week 1 early against the Bucs and didn’t return with an ankle injury. As of now, the team is still evaluating Coleman’s injury, but it’s being called an ankle sprain. The question here is whether this is a high ankle sprain or a standard low ankle sprain. The rehab timeline is different, with a high ankle sprain likely keeping Coleman out at least four weeks. If this is a low ankle sprain, the recovery timeline is probably closer to 2-4 weeks. Look for more details to emerge soon.
Knee Injury (Diagnosis Unknown): day to day
Williams had a quiet day in Week 1, and it didn’t get any better in the second half. He hauled in a 17-yard reception on a crossing route and injured his knee, ending his day. He was seen grabbing for his knee after being tackled in the middle of the field. Per The Athletic’s Daniel Popper, Williams told reporters his knee “tightened up,” which is why he didn’t go back on the field late in the game. Obviously this is not a diagnosis, so more details are necessary. One thing to consider – Williams grabbed for his knee after being tackled, which typically signals a structural injury rather than having muscle around the knee “tighten up.” Fantasy owners need to monitor Williams’ status closely.
Bruised Right Hand: day to day
Baker Mayfield had a rough outing on Sunday against the Titans, and part of the reason why may be because he got banged up in the 2nd quarter, injuring his wrist. He was seen leaving the stadium with a wrap on his right wrist/hand after getting x-rays, which were negative. All indications at this point indicate that the injury isn’t serious, but if this involves his thumb, his performance could be negatively affected. The thumb is crucial for a QB to be able to throw the ball with accuracy. Monitor Cleveland’s practice reports this week.
Sprained Left Ankle: week to week
Mixon exited Sunday early with an inversion sprain of the left ankle. His foot got caught in the turf and turned inward in what is a classic mechanism of injury. Mixon is likely to miss practice time this week, but he should play in Week 2, possibly with ankle tape or a brace.
Left Clavicle Fracture: IR- out 8 weeks
Funchess injured his left shoulder when he came down after a jump ball in the end zone. Shortly after, he was ruled out and didn’t return. X-rays revealed a broken collarbone and like Foles, Funchess is likely to undergo surgery to stabilize the fracture. Rehab will begin immediately after surgery and progress for 8 weeks while he is out.
Calf Strain: week to week
Albert Wilson exited Week 1 early after re-aggravating his calf injury that he dealt with off and on during training camp. The issue with calf strains is that they have a high recurrence rate – case and point here. Because this is a subsequent injury, fantasy owners should plan for a longer absence. He’s unlikely to play in Week 2.
Right Knee Meniscus Injury: out multiple weeks
News broke Monday morning that Derrius Guice injured his right knee in the Redskins’ lost to the Eagles. He finished with just 18 rushing yards and looked noticeably less than 100% in the second half. An MRI on Monday revealed a meniscus injury, but what the Redskins decide to do about the meniscus injury will determine how long he is out. If the meniscus tear is treated with a “clean up” procedure where the doctor trims the piece of the meniscus that is torn, Guice is looking at a 2-4 week recovery. If the team decides to repair the torn meniscus, he’ll be out the rest of the year. Worth noting, this is not the knee that Guice spent all offseason rehabbing coming off of his torn ACL, which occurred in the left knee. Guice does have a history of a right knee injury in college.
Right Knee Injury: day to day
Will Dissly spent all of last season and offseason rehabbing coming back from patellar tendon repair surgery. He aggravated the knee in yesterday’s game vs. the Bengals and didn’t return. This is not an injury that carries an exact “diagnosis” as Dissly is basically dealing with irritation of that ligament and the front of the knee after yesterday’s injury. Expect Dissly to miss most of this week’s practice reps and consider him to truly be questionable for Week 2 and beyond.