Jaxon Smith-Njigba Injury Update: Will Smith-Njigba Play in Week 1? Fantasy Impact and More

With only days before the start of the NFL regular season, what is the latest news and updates on the injury to Seattle Seahawks WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba?

We are just days away from the start of the 2023 NFL season, which means it’s time to take a deep look at our fantasy football rosters. We shift from drafting and making moves with other teams to setting the optimum lineups in our leagues. What players should we have in, and who should we bench? And what injury concerns do we have?

If you are a Jaxon Smith-Njigba manager, you may already be aware of his questionable availability for the Seattle Seahawks‘ home opener against the rival Los Angeles Rams. The news is disappointing for everyone excited about JSN’s debut, but there is positive news that his first game will still be on Sunday.

So, what is the latest news on Smith-Njigba? Do we think he will play this week?

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Latest News Surrounding Jaxon Smith-Njigba?

Smith-Njigba suffered a crack in a bone in his wrist during the Seahawks’ final preseason game. The injury required surgery, which is nothing any fantasy manager wants to hear. But the healing time was surprisingly shorter than most injuries that require an operation. And Wednesday afternoon, head coach Pete Carroll announced the rookie is set to play this weekend.

Smith-Njigba was able to return to the practice field quickly for the Seahawks. He took part in drills with the team just days after surgery and even caught passes. But his wrist and hand were heavily wrapped. This appears to be precautionary for JSN’s healing and all the right steps were taken to have the rookie ready for Week 1.

Will Smith-Njigba Play This Week?

As we mentioned, Carroll announced that Smith-Njigba is going to suit up on Sunday. This comes well before a designation needs to be made and is a great sign that the rookie will be in great shape for his first NFL game.

With Smith-Njigba playing, the Seahawks have a potent attack on offense. Outside of JSN, the Seahawks still have DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett in the WR room. Couple that with their talented running backs in Ken Walker III and rookie Zach Charbonnet, and the Seahawks offense is a major threat.

This is only Week 1, and the team invested highly in the rookie with a first-round draft pick. If there were any questions at all about Smith-Njigba’s wrist, the team would be cautious and sit him. The fact he is good to go speaks volumes about the state of his injury.

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With all the weapons on offense in the Emerald City, the Seahawks are going to be a lot to handle for the visiting Los Angeles Rams. We will have to see how they manage covering three talented wide receivers and if this will lend to opportunities for Smith-Njigba to shine in Week 1.

What Does This Mean For Smith-Njigba’s Fantasy Ranking?

In redraft, Smith-Njigba may have slipped a slot or two the last week, but he clearly should be right back where he was pre-injury. This wrist injury (even though it required surgery) was minor and didn’t require him to miss any regular season action. If you had confidence enough to pick JSN before his injury, you should have the exact same confidence now.

According to ADP, Smith-Njigba is being drafted in the early part of the eighth round. This still seems like a perfect spot in redraft for the rookie wide receiver. Until we see a full breakout, it is hard to take JSN any higher. But this is a strong starting spot for a promising rookie.

From a dynasty perspective, absolutely nothing has changed. Smith-Njigba is a rookie, and you’re in it for the long haul if you selected him in your rookie draft. This injury didn’t even cost JSN a game of action. In the grand scheme of a dynasty career, this is a footnote we will likely forget about.

I would confidently still draft JSN in all formats. He is a promising young wide receiver that was highly regarded in the draft process. And it doesn’t hurt that he will be playing on a team that has had a ton of success at the position for many years.

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