Leonard Fournette Says He'll Be Ready to Play Week 1 Despite Foot Injury

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistAugust 19, 2017

JACKSONVILLE, FL - JULY 28: Runningback Leonard Fournette #27 of the Jacksonville Jaguars works out during Training Camp at Florida Blue Health and Wellness Practice Fields on July 28, 2017 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)
Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

Despite having a foot injury, Jacksonville Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette expects to play Week 1 when the Jags face the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium in their 2017 season opener on Sept. 10.

On Saturday, John Oehser of the Jaguars' official website passed along comments from the rookie playmaker, who downplayed the long-term impact of the ailment.

"That's nothing to worry about," Fournette said.

The 22-year-old LSU product missed the team's second preseason game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday night because of the foot problem. He's been out of practice since last Sunday, but it's unclear when or how the injury occurred.

Although he's confident in a quick return, the issue does raise questions about his durability after an injury-plagued final season with the Tigers at the collegiate level.

Will Carroll of SEC Country wrote last year an ankle issue Fournette was dealing with had developed into a chronic problem. A source told the outlet it would need "constant maintenance or perhaps surgery in the future."

The running back, who called the situation "frustrating," also said Saturday there's no connection between last season's injuries and his preseason setback, per Ryan O'Halloran of the Florida Times-Union.

"I've never had a foot or toe injury or anything like that," Fournette said. "They've done a great job rehabbing a lot of us."

All told, Fournette has just over three weeks remaining to complete his recovery in time to make his debut against the Texans.

Chris Ivory, T.J. Yeldon and Corey Grant will form a backfield committee for Jacksonville until the team's projected starter is cleared for action.