Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin suffered a torn ACL in Week 15 of the 2021 season, bringing what had been a productive year to a screeching halt. He finished with a career-high 98 receptions, proving he had earned Tom Brady’s trust. And earning Brady’s trust meant Godwin was in for a payday, which meant the Bucs had to franchise tag him. The two sides eventually came to an agreement on a three-year, $60 million contract extension
For Godwin, that means he’ll be making less than he likely would elsewhere, but it also means the guy throwing him the ball is the best quarterback of this generation, and maybe of all-time. With Brady under center, Godwin has flourished into a premier receiver. In 26 games together, Brady and Godwin have combined for 163 receptions, 1943 yards, and 12 touchdowns.
Godwin was the 19th ranked fantasy receiver in (144 points), and came in at 52nd overall. He averaged 10.3 fantasy points per game, which was 15th amongst receivers who played in at least 10 games. The big question, though, is his health for 2022.
Torn ACLs are obviously no joke. We’ve seen time-and-time again how much they can impact players, especially receivers and running backs. We often see a drop in production, less explosiveness, and a general lack of confidence in the season after surgery, especially early on. Players are hesitant to risk further injury, and don’t trust the knee until a few weeks go by.
For Godwin, this is likely going to be the case. It’s also worth noting he sprained his MCL in the process of tearing his ACL, which further complicates his recovery. There is no guarantee he will return in Week 1, meaning he isn’t worth an early pick. He’s upside is there, and you know he will get targets with Brady throwing him the ball, but missing out on him shouldn’t ruin your draft. Take him only after you have a solid plan for your receivers, because the production will be there, it’s just not going to be immediate.