Derrick Henry Injury Update
While the latest report suggests that Derrick Henry will be out six to 10 weeks with a Jones fracture, it is important to remember that this injury is no laughing matter. It is not a joke, and it is not a joke that it can lead to a career-ending injury. The Titans will likely replace Henry in the backfield with Adrian Peterson. The question is, what will happen to Henry’s fantasy football value?
Derrick Henry is expected to miss 6-10 weeks
Derrick Henry is expected to miss six to 10 weeks due to an injury to his right foot. The injury occurred on Oct. 31 during a game against the Indianapolis Colts. The Titans placed him on injured reserve for a few days after the game, and then had him undergo surgery on Nov. 2. He suffered a Jones fracture in his right foot. It’s an injury that affects the middle part of the foot, connecting the toes. While the injury is relatively common, it can be particularly devastating for players.
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Henry is expected to miss between six and 10 weeks to recover from the injury. This timetable would allow him to return to action by Weeks 14 or 18. If he’s not ready for Weeks 14 or 18, the Titans will likely have to sign a free agent running back.
While Mike Vrabel didn’t provide a timetable, he did confirm that Henry is having surgery. He’s expected to miss six to ten weeks, and isn’t expected to return for the first three games of the postseason. But that still leaves plenty of time for him to return. In the meantime, the Titans should be able to fill his void at running back with Dontrell Hilliard and D’Onta Foreman.
Adrian Peterson will replace him in the Titans’ backfield
Adrian Peterson is a former NFL running back who is known as a punishing runner between the tackles. Though he’s less of a three-down backhorse than Henry, he should still be able to provide value in a limited role. He has 20 touchdowns in the past three seasons. Peterson will likely slot in alongside Jeremy McNichols in Tennessee’s backfield, where he’ll provide depth.
The Titans have signed running back Adrian Peterson from the practice squad. Peterson spent last season with the Detroit Lions. He led the team with 156 carries and 604 rushing yards. Peterson ended the season in good health. In his career, he’s made seven Pro Bowls and led the NFL in rushing yards in 2008, 2012 and 2015.
Titans’ coach Tony Dews likes Peterson’s style and believes he can duplicate his performance from the past season. Other Titans players have also been excited about the move. Running back Ryan Tannehill said that Peterson is “a huge addition” and compared him to Derrick Henry.
Derrick Henry is in talks to return to the 53-man roster
Derrick Henry is currently on injured reserve, but he is expected to return to the 53-man roster sometime this week. The running back has not played in a game since October, but he did walk on the practice field last week and had a light workout on Monday. The Titans are still talking about Henry’s return, but head coach Mike Vrabel said the team will make a decision mid-week.
Derrick Henry was voted the 2020 AP NFL Offensive Player of the Year, and he had a great season with the Titans last year. He rushed for 937 yards on 219 attempts and scored 10 touchdowns. In addition, he also had 18 receptions for a total of 1,091 scrimmage yards. Derrick Henry is the primary reason the Titans have the best record in the AFC and are riding a four-game winning streak. The Titans are at the Los Angeles Rams (7-1) on Sunday.
Dianna Russini of ESPN reported that Henry would return to practice on Wednesday. The return of Henry would be a huge boost for Tennessee. He is the focal point of their offense, and his return to practice would allow the Titans to prepare for the postseason. Tennessee has been able to get by without Henry for a few weeks, but it has been without the explosive runs that Henry provides.
Derrick Henry’s fantasy football value
Derrick Henry was on pace for a historic season in 2021 before sustaining a season-ending injury. He had completed over 80% of Tennessee’s designed runs prior to his injury, and was on track to top 2,000 yards and twenty touchdowns. Before the injury, he ranked among the NFL’s top running backs by a factor of 40. In eight games, Henry racked up 937 rushing yards and ten touchdowns.
The injury to Derrick Henry was not the only limiting factor in his workload. The running back still managed to rush for 115 yards in Sunday’s loss to the Chiefs. Though he was limited to 17 carries, his average per carry was higher than average. In addition, he threw his first career touchdown pass to MyCole Pruitt. In Week 8, Henry is expected to once again lead the Titans’ offense, and he’ll get plenty of work against the Broncos.
If Henry is able to return to action, he’s a great fantasy football play for owners with IR spots. He could return during the fantasy playoffs if he recovers well. However, his recovery time is uncertain. He could miss six to 10 weeks.