How Travis Kelce’s Knee Injury Affects the Chiefs, Fantasy Football Users, and more
Kansas City Chiefs star tight end Travis Kelce suffered a hyperextended knee injury during practice on Tuesday, head coach Andy Reid announced in a press conference. While he did not provide much detail on the injury, he confirmed that Kelce was a limited participant at practice.
ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter announced that Kelce’s ACL was intact after undergoing testing, but there was significant inflammation in his knee. The Chiefs will run more tests on Wednesday, which will determine his status for Thursday night’s season opener against the Detroit Lions.
NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport added that the Chiefs will wait for the swelling in Kelce’s knee to go down before making any hard decisions, but this is not believed to be a long-term injury. Even if it’s not long-term, all things considered, the injury could have many implications.
For the Chiefs, it could make the beginning of the regular season a little bit tougher. Out of Kansas City’s September and early October opponents, four of the five teams won seven or more games last season, with three of those five winning nine or more games. Those four teams are the Detroit Lions, Jacksonville Jaguars, New York Jets, and Minnesota Vikings. They also play the Chicago Bears, who won just three games last season. Despite how good or bad their opening opponents are, they all had a busy offseason to keep their fan base optimistic. While teams don’t wish for injuries to their opponents, not having to guard Kelce could improve their chances of winning.
Beyond the schedule, let’s look at the offense. Without his main target in Kelce, superstar quarterback Patrick Mahomes will need to get his other pieces involved. According to the Chiefs’ depth chart, their top wide receiver is Kadarius Toney, who is battling injury troubles of his own but should be ready for Thursday night. Besides Toney, the wide receiver room includes veteran Marquez Valdes-Scantling and second-year player Skyy Moore. Without Travis Kelce, the Chiefs are left with Noah Gray as their primary tight end. Mahomes could also get the running back room involved, which consists of Isiah Pacheco, Jerick McKinnon, and Clyde Edwards-Helaire.
Kelce’s injury even has an impact on the fans. Many NFL fans enjoy playing fantasy football every year. Going into the 2023 season, Kelce is the fourth-best-ranked player in ESPN Fantasy and the highest-ranked tight end. Last season, Kelce was the highest-scoring tight end by far, racking up a total of three-hundred sixteen fantasy points. He was the twelfth-highest-scoring player overall. If Kelce misses time, his draft value could decrease in leagues. Behind Kelce, the highest-rated tight ends based on season projection are Mark Andrews (Baltimore Ravens), T.J. Hockenson (Minnesota Vikings), Darren Waller (New York Giants), and George Kittle (San Francisco 49ers).
All eyes will be on the Kansas City Chiefs this week to see what Travis Kelce’s official status is going forward. As an avid NFL fan, I hope he’s back on the field as soon as possible. One of the interesting things about football is there are tons of moving pieces, making the sport pretty unpredictable.
Links to articles that inspired me to write this blog: