Heading into the rest of the Week 1 slate, injuries are already impacting team depth charts. The New York Jets will be without quarterback Zach Wilson when they battle the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, as the second-year quarterback is recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery. Former Ravens signal-caller Joe Flacco will start in his place.
In positive news, the Philadelphia Eagles are likely to have running back Miles Sanders available for their season opener against the Detroit Lions. He said he is “ready to go” at a news conference Thursday. Sanders has missed time during the preseason with a hamstring injury but is expected to be the lead back for the Eagles this season.
Here are more injury updates from our NFL Nation reporters as we head toward the Sunday matchups:
London is officially listed as questionable, but practiced all week on a limited basis. Coach Arthur Smith said the Falcons will make a decision Saturday, but “he looked all right. He progressed as the week went on.” The bigger question is if London plays, how much work they give him? This was his first week practicing since injuring a knee in the preseason opener last month in Detroit.
— Michael Rothstein
Injury: Left knee
Dobbins, who suffered a torn ACL during preseason in 2021, is listed as questionable. He has been pushing to play Sunday and has looked much stronger this past week. But quarterback Lamar Jackson created some doubt about Dobbins’ availability when he said the runner would be back playing “in a couple of weeks.” Even if Dobbins plays, he will not get the full workload. The Ravens will rely on free agent additions Mike Davis and Kenyan Drake.
Injury: Left ankle
Stanley, who is listed as doubtful, is likely to miss a couple of weeks before returning to the field. This means Ja’Wuan James, a longtime right tackle, will protect Lamar Jackson’s blind side. James has only played 18 snaps at left tackle in his eight-year NFL career.
— Jamison Hensley
Injury: Shin cut
Because NFL teams are being more transparent when it comes to injuries, the Panthers added McCaffrey to the report Thursday when he received a small cleat cut on his shin in practice. It’s nothing that kept him out of practice Thursday or Friday, and he’ll play Sunday against the Browns.
— David Newton
Jones did not practice ahead of Week 1 with the same hamstring injury that cost him time during training camp. He’s doubtful for the San Francisco 49ers game, which not only affects the receiver depth chart, but also who will be returning punts. Coach Matt Eberflus said Jones is “getting close” to being past this recurrent injury and estimates he’ll “be good here soon.”
Eberflus did not specify where Patrick will play — center or guard, starter or backup — though the veteran offensive lineman did not snap the ball during the portions of practice that were open to the media this week.
— Courtney Cronin
Lazard was viewed as WR1 all offseason, and he sure looked the part during training camp. But when he got stepped on in practice last week, it meant quarterback Aaron Rodgers might have to depend on someone else. Lazard wouldn’t rule out the possibility of playing Sunday at the Minnesota Vikings, but his status was officially listed as doubtful. In the three-receiver sets, it had been Lazard, Sammy Watkins and Randall Cobb. But this opens the door for one of the rookies — Christian Watson or Romeo Doubs — to get a bigger-than-expected workload.
— Rob Demovsky
This has flown under the radar a bit, but the Patriots’ leading receiver has been mostly limited since the team’s preseason finale against the Raiders in late August. It would surprise many if he doesn’t play in the season opener, although his snaps might have to be managed. The Patriots have loaded up the practice squad with four receivers to protect themselves.
— Mike Reiss
The Seahawks listed Walker as a non-participant Thursday and in their estimated practice report for Friday. Pete Carroll has been holding out hope that Seattle’s second-round pick could make it back by the Monday night opener from his mid-August hernia procedure, but that’s not looking likely with Walker still not practicing. If Walker doesn’t play, expect DeeJay Dallas to spell starter Rashaad Penny.
— Brady Henderson
Thomas continues to work back from a torn ACL and did work in the red zone in practice Friday, a good sign for his availability Sunday. Washington wants to see how his injured knee reacts Saturday to having taken a heavier load in practice this week. It looks promising for Thomas playing, but he first must feel good Saturday. With rookie Cole Turner likely inactive Sunday as he recovers from his hamstring injury, getting Thomas back would be a key for the Commanders — especially in the red zone.
Curl was ruled out after having surgery on his right thumb last week. Curl had the cast removed this week, but still had a pad on the hand and around the thumb. It’s uncertain how much time he’ll miss, though he could return for Week 2. Without Curl, Washington will use multiple players in his place at strong safety and big nickel — second-year Darrick Forrest; rookie Percy Butler. Jeremy Reaves can fill in as a third safety, but he plays more free safety than strong.
— John Keim