Vikings’ TE Irv Smith underwent thumb surgery today.
HC Kevin O'Connell expects him to be ready for start of the regular season, according to the rest of Schefter's tweet. Smith was a popular breakout candidate heading into last season but a torn meniscus ended his season in early September. In his place, Tyler Conklin was the fantasy TE16, and last year’s offense was likely more run-heavy than the 2022 version will be. In the 11 career games where Smith saw at least four targets, he averaged 3.7 receptions for 39 yards and 0.45 touchdowns (on 5.2 targets per game), which works out to 8.7 PPG. That’s about what Kyle Pitts averaged as last season’s TE5. A top-12 finish is definitely in play for Smith.