Matt Ryan’s real-life Week 4 was a lot worse than your Fantasy Football Week 4.
In the span of a quarter, the Falcons quarterback went from his full-strength offense to playing without top targets Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu. Jones jogged off innocently enough in the second quarter but didn’t return because of a hip flexor injury. Teammate Mohamed Sanu also didn’t come back in the second half after suffering an injury to his hamstring.
It left Ryan with Taylor Gabriel and Justin Hardy as his top receivers, both of whom seemed overmatched. In the third quarter, Ryan dropped back and uncorked a deep bomb intended for Gabriel that wound up getting picked off by Bills cornerback Micah Hyde. It goes without saying that if Ryan had to go any amount of time without Jones, and certainly without Sanu in addition, that the Falcons passing game would be muted.
Lucky for the Falcons, they have a bye in Week 5. There’s a chance both Jones and Sanu make it back without missing a game.
But if not, it’s trouble. Not many Fantasy owners started Sanu, so his absence shouldn’t impact anyone. Obviously everyone who drafted Jones had been starting him! He entered this week on the injury report with a back injury but played through it until he hurt his hip. If he’s out for any period of time, Fantasy owners are left scrambling for lineup help. With Sanu also hurting, it’s hard to say whether anyone in this Falcons’ receiving corps would be worth picking up to help replace him.
And just like for Ryan, the replacement won’t be anywhere near as good as the original, no matter who it is.