Jose Juarez/Associated Press
If you’re scrambling to replace David Johnson after Week 1, first of all, I’m sorry, and second of all, good luck.
The fantasy industry waited on every report that trickled out about the wrist injury Johnson suffered in the Cardinals’ Week 1 loss to the Lions. Eventually, head coach Bruce Arians said the injury is the same prognosis as the injury teammate T.J. Logan is dealing with, which landed him on the injured reserve, according to Darren Urban of AZcardinals.com.
While Arians also said Johnson would seek a second opinion, he acknowledged that the team could look into re-signing Chris Johnson. He would join a backfield that already includes Andre Ellington and Kerwynn Williams. Both players were active in Week 1, although it’s tough to get a clear read on how the Cardinals would use the two based on their snaps in the opener since Johnson went down in the third quarter.
Johnson led the group with 61 percent of the snaps. He had six catches for 68 yards on nine targets and 11 carries for 23 yards. Ellington played 27 percent of the snaps with two receptions for 35 yards on three targets, but no carries. Williams had 10 yards on five carries and one reception for two yards (one target) on just 12 percent of the snaps.
So how do the Cardinals replace Johnson? They don’t, but they’ll have to do it with a committee. Johnson’s massive fantasy value was tied to active roles as a runner and a receiver. Neither Williams nor Ellington is fit to take on that role alone, which is why Mike Jurecki of ArizonaSports.com said the team would use a committee that could also include Elijhaa Penny. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the team will also sign RB D.J. Foster from the Patriots’ practice squad.
If you’re hitting the waiver wire trying to figure out the best fantasy option in this backfield, immediately lower your expectations. This is a bad offense that wasn’t very dangerous to begin with outside of Johnson. Plus, they are expected to be without left tackle D.J. Humphries for one or two games because of a sprained MCL, according to Urban. None of the Cardinals’ backs should be a top priority to add.
BS Meter on replacing Johnson with one player: 10/10