Fantasy Football 2022: Training Camp Roundup (8/17)


It can be hard to prep for fantasy football during training camp and the preseason. Things happen every day that might be a huge deal for fantasy … or might be no deal at all. Sometimes we can figure it out, but sometimes it’s just a matter of paying attention to what happens to know what might matter just so things don’t slip through the cracks.


So each day in this space, we’ll take a trip through the top news and takeaways around the league’s training camps to offer up what fantasy managers need to know as we head through draft season and into the 2022 NFL regular season.

Mike Evans to Sit Out This Week 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Todd Bowles said Tuesday that Mike Evans (hamstring) will be held out of practice this week. Evans has a history of soft tissue injuries, but he doesn’t typically miss games because of them. 

It’s worth pointing out that Russell Gage is also missing practice this week, so Julio Jones is getting a lot of reps with the first team, which could help him get up to speed quicker than anticipated. For now, though, there shouldn’t be any real concern for Evans’ health as we head toward the regular season, where he’ll look to put up 1,000 yards and 8 touchdowns for the fifth consecutive year. 

Chris Godwin Doing 7-on-7 Work 

Up to this point, Chris Godwin had only participated in individual drills at practice, but he took a step forward in his rehab with 7-on-7 work Tuesday. It’s a welcome site for the Bucs who have been dealing with the absences of Mike Evans and Russell Gage as of late. 

If Godwin’s remarkable recovery continues at this pace, he’ll have a legitimate chance to suit up early in the season. If he does, he could prove to be a steal at his current ADP (WR29), especially considering the health concerns throughout the Tampa Bay receiving corps. Drafters should continue to exercise caution, however, until the star wideout practices in full. 


Zach Wilson Undergoes Successful Surgery

After Zach Wilson went down with a non-contact injury in the Jets’ first preseason game, fans held their breath in fear of a season-ender. They can officially breathe again, as their franchise quarterback’s meniscus surgery Tuesday went as planned, with no surprises. 

The team has outlined a 4- to 6-week timetable, so his status is in jeopardy for the beginning of the regular season. Whether or not Wilson misses time doesn’t impact the team’s pass-catchers that much, though. Second-year wideout Elijah Moore was a star without Wilson last season, top-10 pick Garrett Wilson should be fine with Joe Flacco behind center and rookie running back Breece Hall will most likely see similar volume no matter who the starter is. 

Antonio Gibson Gets Reps on Special Teams 

Less than a week after he fumbled in the preseason opener, Antonio Gibson found himself working with the punt team as the slot protector. The third-year back’s fumbling problems are well-documented, and it appears Ron Rivera is sending him a message by forcing him to play special teams and get reps with the third-team offense. 

Antonio Gibson 2022 Fantasy Football Training Camp Roundup

This development certainly darkens the clouds that are already hanging over Gibson. He was slated to lose receiving work to J.D. McKissic and some short yardage carries to rookie Brian Robinson, but now Robinson looks like a great pick toward the end of drafts. It’s clear the Commanders are at the end of their rope with Gibson, so he could easily end up getting locked in the doghouse this year. 

Michael Thomas to be Ready for Week 1 

Saints head coach Dennis Allen gave his vote of confidence to Michael Thomas Tuesday, saying the star receiver will be “ready to go” when the regular season starts. Fans have seen clips of Thomas running routes and have heard reporters praising him throughout camp, so this statement from Allen confirms what fans had been hoping for. 

Thomas’ ADP has been steadily rising since the start of training camp, and rightfully so. This is the same Michael Thomas who holds the record for receptions in a season. Luckily, he’s never relied on speed or quickness, so he should be able to regain a good bit of his All-Pro form. It’s possible that Thomas is being drafted at his absolute floor (WR30) if he can stay healthy. 

Drew Lock Getting First Team Reps 

After ceding first-team snaps to Geno Smith throughout camp, Drew Lock finally got his chance to run with the ones. Head coach Pete Carroll insists that this is just part of the plan to prepare Lock to start the second preseason game, but it certainly appears that there is an open competition in Seattle. 

Both DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett saw mixed results with Geno Smith at the helm last season, so it’s unclear which quarterback is the better option from a fantasy perspective. Lock loves to throw the ball down the field, though, which could benefit both star wideouts who put up big numbers with Russell Wilson, another fan of the deep ball. 

And then late Tuesday, another wrinkle, as Lock reportedly tested positive for COVID-19. He had been in line to start the team’s second preseason game Thursday, but that is now scuttled and Smith will get another start. We’ll see how the team handles the third preseason game next week.

Ken Walker Dealing with Hernia Issue

Rookie running back Ken Walker missed practice Tuesday on the same day that his counterpart Rashaad Penny returned from a groin injury. Pete Carroll didn’t offer much information on the severity of Walker’s hernia issue, so it’ll have to be a wait-and-see approach. 

Hernia injuries can represent anything from a minor inconvenience for fantasy managers to a season-long problem for the player. It was hinted at earlier this offseason that Penny could receiver somewhere close to 20 carries to begin the season, so he would certainly become a lot more valuable if Walker does miss extended time.

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