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Ranking Fantasy's 1st-Rounders by Injury Risk

By Jared Smola 11:08am EDT 8/7/19

Nothing kills a fantasy season like losing your 1st-round pick to injury. Just ask anyone who spent a 1st-rounder on Leonard Fournette last year.

Our partners at Sports Injury Predictor have run the numbers and come up with injury probabilities and projected games missed for every fantasy-relevant player.

Let’s take a look at which of this year’s 1st-rounders carry the most and least injury risk. We’ll rank the 12 guys below from most to least risky according to projected games missed.

12. Julio Jones, WR, Falcons

Projected Games Missed: 3.3

Jones’ right foot has been a problem for a long time. He broke a bone in the foot in the pre-draft process in 2011 and needed surgery. He re-broke it and had surgery again in 2013. In 2016, Jones sprained the big toe on his right foot and required surgery that offseason to remove a bunion. And he had another surgery this offseason to remove a bunion. Jones has yet to participate in camp as of August 7.

In between all those right foot issues, he’s dealt with hamstring, ankle and hip injuries. Jones has missed a total of 17 games through 8 NFL seasons.

He’s now played all 16 games in 3 of the past 4 years. But Jones’ injury history — plus his big projected workload — leave him as the biggest injury risk in the 1st round of fantasy drafts.

11. Odell Beckham, WR, Browns

Projected Games Missed: 3.2

Beckham has missed time with injury in 3 of his 5 NFL seasons. A torn hamstring cost him 4 games in his 2014 rookie campaign. He missed the 2017 opener after suffering a left high-ankle sprain in the preseason. Then he fractured that ankle in Week 5 and missed the rest of the year. And this past season, Beckham missed the final 4 games with a badly bruised quad.

That’s a total of 21 games missed over 5 seasons.

10. David Johnson, RB, Cardinals

Projected Games Missed: 2.7

Johnson has made it through all 16 games in 3 of his 4 NFL seasons. But he missed 15 contests in 2017 with a fractured left wrist that required surgery. And he suffered a sprained MCL in 2016 that likely would have cost him games had it not occurred in Week 17.

Throw in a projected 315 touches, and Johnson checks in as the biggest injury risk among the 1st-round RBs.

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