Jerry Jeudy Injury Report: Broncos WR injures ankle in Week 1

Broncos WR Jerry Jeudy went down with what looked like a serious ankle injury. How long will he be out, and what does it mean for Denver?

Second-year wide receiver Jerry Jeudy exited the Denver Broncos season-opening contest against the New York Giants with an ankle injury. Jeudy hauled in a downfield pass from QB Teddy Bridgewater before being taken down awkwardly by Giants DB James Bradberry. Jeudy’s ankle rolled up underneath Bradberry’s body. He fumbled the ball immediately following the incident.

NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero is reporting that Jeudy suffered a high ankle sprain and that his x-rays came back negative. There is no further information available at this time, including the severity of the injury and how much time Jeudy will miss. Be sure to check back later for more details as they become available.

Jerry Jeudy goes down with ankle injury in Week 1

Jeudy stayed on the ground for a while before being carted off the field. One of the NFL’s best route runners, Jeudy’s injury is certainly worrisome for not only this season but his future in the league.

In his first year with the Broncos in 2020, Jeudy hauled in 52 receptions for 856 yards and 3 touchdowns. Though credited with 10 drops on 62 catchable targets a season ago, Jeudy’s routes and ability after the catch are nearly unparalleled in the NFL today.

Jeudy injury and fantasy impact

For as exciting as the start of the fantasy football season is for all of us, the worst thing you can watch is a critical player go down in their first game. Unfortunately, this is the reality that fantasy managers who drafted Jeudy are facing. Jeudy was a breakout candidate for the 2021 season after a stellar rookie campaign. Despite Denver’s suspect QB play, he ended the season as the WR46, averaging 9.9 points per game (PPR) and 2.99 points per reception.

With Jeudy’s season possibly in doubt based on his injury, the Broncos and fantasy managers may need to move on quickly. Courtland Sutton will take over as the team’s WR1. Sutton is back to full health after tearing his ACL early last season and can take over a game on his own.

In a breakout 2019 season, the 6’4″ WR was the WR17 (PPR) with 1,112 yards and 6 touchdowns. With Sutton likely already on rosters, run to the waivers and see if KJ Hamler or Tim Patrick are available. Hamler possesses immense speed and YAC ability that meshes well with Bridgewater. Patrick would be the logical perimeter fill-in for Denver, having had success in this role last year. In 2020, he was the WR44 (10.7 ppg) and had 742 yards and 6 TDs on just 79 targets.

Both Hamler and Patrick would have low-end flex appeal should Jeudy miss extended time, with Sutton vaulting into low-end WR2 to high-end WR3 territory.

Cam Mellor is the Senior Director of NFL News/Analysis for Pro Football Network. He is also the co-host of Between the Hashes, a college football and NFL draft podcast. You can find his writing here. Follow him on Twitter @CamMellor