Atlanta Falcons: Injury Leads To Opportunity for Harry Douglas

Ken KellyContributor IIIAugust 9, 2010

FLOWERY BRANCH, GA - AUGUST 01:  Receiver Harry Douglas #83 of the Atlanta Falcons during opening day of training camp on August 1, 2009 at the Falcons Training Complex in Flowery Branch, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Atlanta Falcons receiver Michael Jenkins has injured his left shoulder and will reportedly be out four to six weeks. Specific details are a little sketchy right now, but it sounds like he has a dislocation at the very least.

Jenkins has been very durable during his six year career, missing a total of just four games. However, his production has been disappointing from a fantasy standpoint as he’s produced a total of just 3,002 yards and 18 touchdowns during that same six-year span.

He’s a classic case of the value difference when you consider fantasy versus reality. Anybody who watches the Falcons play knows he’s a very valuable blocker and has had a huge part in the success of Matt Ryan, Michael Turner, Tony Gonzalez, and Roddy White. His loss would be significant to the Falcons, but nearly transparent in fantasy.

So, why write anything about Jenkins when he really doesn’t hold much fantasy value anyway?

This injury threatens Jenkins’ availability for opening day and there’s a sleeper out there just waiting for an opportunity to make the most of some added playing time. His name, you ask? It’s Harry Douglas.

Douglas has the slot receiver job sewn up, but he’ll now get time as the starting split end.

After a torn ACL ruined his 2009 season, many dynasty league owners forgot about Douglas. That could change here shortly. He’s already drawing rave reviews from the coaches and quarterback Matt Ryan for the explosive playmaking ability he’s shown thus far in camp.

Atlanta opens the preseason Friday night at home against Kansas City and their regular season opener is Sept. 12 at Pittsburgh. They certainly hope Jenkins will be ready to go by the Steelers game on opening day.

If there’s a silver lining for Atlanta, it’s their ability to see what Douglas can do while they wait for Jenkins to heal.

Don’t be surprised if Douglas never leaves the spotlight.

Article written by Ken Kelly
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