If Jenkins heals quickly and makes it back towards the early end of that projection, he could still miss the Falcons' four preseason games. If he's pushed out towards the latter end of six weeks, he could miss two regular-season games.
"You are always concerned anytime any of your players goes down with an injury," Falcons head coach Mike Smith said. "One thing I am certain of is that Michael will work very hard with our athletic performance staff and our training staff to get back out on the field as soon as possible."
Jenkins was a lock to start opposite Roddy White with Atlanta's first-team offense. He caught 50 passes last year, but is also a huge asset in the run game -- Jenkins is a fantastic blocker.
With the Falcons' expanded offensive playbook this season, early plans were to get Jenkins involved more in the red zone offense. He and quarterback Matt Ryan have been working on their timing this preseason.
"Michael creates a lot of mismatches," Smith said. "It really becomes apparent in the red zone, because you've got to throw the ball up high on the top shelf. Michael is going to have a height advantage anytime he's going up against corners in this league. There are not many 6-foot-5-inch corners, so it will be a big advantage for us."
While Jenkins is on the sideline, the battle between Harry Douglas and rookie Kerry Meier becomes a bit more heated. The two are the most talked about in the slot-receiver position battle.
Brian Finneran and Eric Weems will also see more action with Jenkins hurt. Weems already saw extra repetitions on Saturday during the Falcons' scrimmage. He responded well and had an incredible one-handed catch on the sideline that he tipped to himself.
The Falcons saw first-hand last year what could happen when injuries take their toll. And when Jenkins was hurt on Friday, even though the injury didn't look severe, there weren't too many who didn't instantly think of the season-ending injury to Douglas last year in training camp. The four-to-six week timetable leaves hope for the Falcons that their regular season won't be terribly affected by this injury.
But there is also now a need for the group of receivers below Jenkins on the depth chart to step up.