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Jaxson Smith-Njigba, Julian Fleming out for Buckeyes vs. Arkansas State

The receivers will sit out against Arkansas State in a game where their presence is unlikely to matter

Jaxson Smith-Njigba of the Ohio State Buckeyes speaks during the 2022 Big Ten Conference Football Media Days at Lucas Oil Stadium on July 27, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

As the Ohio State Buckeyes take on Arkansas State today, wide receivers Jaxon Smith-Njigba and Julian Fleming will not play. Smith-Njigba suffered a hamstring injury in the Buckeyes’ home opener against Notre Dame. Fleming, who is dealing with a shoulder injury, did not play in OSU’s victory over the Fighting Irish.

The Buckeyes head into this game as 44.5-point favorites. The loss of their two starters likely won’t be felt too deeply, and the WRs further down the depth chart will get a chance to see some playing time in a virtually guaranteed win.

Smith-Njigba had 95 receptions for 1,606 yards in 2021 on an Ohio State team that was stacked with top tier receivers, and is on the Heisman watch list heading into this season. Fleming didn’t see as much playing time last season, totaling just 86 yards over 12 receptions, but with Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson in the NFL, he’s moved up on the Buckeyes’ depth chart for 2022.