The NFL regular season starts this week, but there are some star players who will not be on the field when the games begin.
Due to either suspensions or injuries, some of the more notable names in the sport will be on the sidelines for Week 1. Here is a list of the most notable players who either have already been ruled out or look likely to miss the start of the 2022 season.
Arizona Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins (6 games)
Hopkins claimed that his positive PED test came when he had 0.1 percent of ostarine in his system. The suspension stood, and he will miss the first six games of the season. That’s a big blow to the Cardinals offense.
Cleveland Browns QB Deshaun Watson (11 games)
Watson’s status for this season was a talking point all offseason. He was accused of sexual misconduct by numerous women, but the Cleveland Browns still traded for him and signed him to a $230 million fully guaranteed deal. He was suspended six games by an arbitrator, the NFL appealed, and the two sides agreed to an 11-game ban. When he comes back, it will be one of the biggest stories in the NFL, and not one the league wants to focus on.
Free agent WR Odell Beckham
Beckham tore his ACL in the Super Bowl, which is why he’s still unsigned. The expectation is Beckham will re-sign with the Los Angeles Rams when he’s healthy, but at that point there could be many teams hoping to add the impact receiver.
Carolina Panthers QB Sam Darnold
Darnold was going to back up Baker Mayfield, and then an ankle injury put him on the shelf for 4-6 weeks. He’ll be on injured reserve to start the season.
Baltimore Ravens RB Gus Edwards
Edwards has been slow to recover from a torn ACL, so he’ll start the season on the PUP list. The Ravens haven’t said definitively if starting RB JK Dobbins will be ready for Week 1. Offensive tackle Ronnie Stanley is also questionable as he returns from ankle surgery.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers WR Chris Godwin
Godwin could play in Week 1, but there’s some question about how long it will take for him to be 100 percent coming off a torn ACL suffered last December.
Dallas Cowboys WR Michael Gallup
Gallup is likely to miss at least Week 1 due to a torn ACL suffered late last season. The Cowboys need him back, because they’re fairly thin at receiver after CeeDee Lamb.
Los Angeles Chargers CB JC Jackson
Jackson, a huge free-agent signing in the offseason, had ankle surgery last month. He has not yet been ruled out for the season opener, however.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers C Ryan Jensen
Jensen is out for the start of the season after suffering a knee injury in training camp, although the Buccaneers haven’t ruled out a return for their Pro Bowl center late in the season.
Indianapolis Colts LB Shaquille Leonard
Leonard, one of the best linebackers in the NFL, had offseason back surgery. The Colts haven’t said yet if he’ll be in the lineup for the season opener.
Houston Texans WR John Metchie III
In July, Metchie said he was diagnosed with leukemia. The second-round pick in the 2022 draft is likely to miss the season.
New Orleans Saints OT Trevor Penning
Penning, a first-round pick, was expected to start from Week 1 on for the Saints. However, he had foot surgery and is now expected to be out until at least November.
Washington Commanders RB Brian Robinson Jr.
Robinson looked like Washington’s new starting running back as a rookie. Then he was shot in the lower body during a robbery attempt. He could return this season but no timetable has been announced.
Dallas Cowboys OT Tyron Smith
The Cowboys suffered a big loss when Smith suffered an avulsion fracture of his knee late last month. The eight-time Pro Bowl tackle will miss most or all of the season.
New England Patriots WR Tyquan Thornton
Thornton, a second-round pick, was slated to help New England’s offense but he’ll start the season on injured reserve after injuring his collarbone.
Seattle Seahawks RB Kenneth Walker III
Walker, a second-round pick, had surgery for a hernia in August. That has put his status for Week 1 in question.
Buffalo Bills CB Tre’Davious White
White will start the season on the PUP list. The Bills’ top cornerback is still recovering from a torn ACL suffered last season.
Detroit Lions WR Jameson Williams
The Lions picked Williams in the first round, knowing he was likely to miss the start of the season. He tore his ACL in the national championship game with Alabama. He’ll start the season on the non-football injury (NFI) list.
New York Jets QB Zach Wilson
Wilson could play in the season opener if his knee, which he injured in the Jets’ first preseason game, responds well in practice. But the Jets are likely to be careful with him after he had arthroscopic surgery.
Washington Commanders DE Chase Young
Young’s second season ended abruptly due to a torn ACL. The second overall pick of the 2020 draft will start this season on the PUP list.