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Rhamondre Stevenson expected to play in Week 1 despite missing practice on Friday

We break down the news that Rhamondre Stevenson wasn’t at the start of practice on Friday. What it means for Week 1.

Rhamondre Stevenson #38 of the New England Patriots runs the ball during the third quarter against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium on January 08, 2023 in Orchard Park, New York. Photo by Bryan Bennett/Getty Images

Update: Good news. Stevenson is still expected to play despite missing practice. We’ll likely learn if he’s actually dealing with something when the injury report comes out later, but it sounds like this wasn’t an injury related absence.

There’s no reason to get too alarmed yet, but Patriots running back Rhamondre Stevenson wasn’t at practice on Friday, per Mike Reiss. He hasn’t been on the injury report this week while practicing, so there really is only speculation until we get more official word on why he’s not there.

Fantasy football implications for Week 1

Stevenson is a top back in the league and even the addition of Ezekiel Elliott shouldn’t depress that evaluation of him. We should expect another strong season from him and hopefully today’s absence is easily explained away.

If he were to miss Elliott would take over the lead role and face his old rivals, the Eagles front seven. That isn’t a great matchup for him, but he would be the go-to guy and would be a fantasy start based on projected usage. Elliott actually had a decent 2023 against the Eagles, rushing 29 times for 136 yards and two touchdowns.