Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Drake London suffered a knee injury on the opening drive of the team's preseason opener against the Detroit Lions and will not return to the game, the team announced. London seemed to have suffered the injury on his lone target of the day, which he hauled in for 24 yards. Quarterback Marcus Mariota rolled out right and found London on a crosser and the rookie wideout was tackled while going out of bounds.
The severity of this knee injury is unclear, but London was able to jog off the field before the team's medical staff looked at that knee on the sideline. Given that this is merely an exhibition, there is a scenario where the injury isn't too serious and the Falcons are merely being cautious with the rookie. Nevertheless, it's less than ideal when such a key piece to the passing offense departs for any reason.
London was selected No. 8 overall in the 2022 NFL Draft out of USC and was the first receiver to come off the board in what was a loaded class at the position. The 21-year-old is coming off a 2021 season where he was named Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year after catching 88 passes for 1,084 yards and seven touchdowns in just eight games.
London did miss the end of the 2021 campaign due to a fractured right ankle but was fully healthy by the time he was selected by Atlanta at the draft.