New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas has been questionable for the team’s “Monday Night Football” matchup against the Las Vegas Raiders all week, and now we finally have a verdict on whether or not he’ll play.
According to ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez, Thomas has officially been ruled out for the Week 2 contest with a high-ankle sprain. The wide receiver has been nursing the injury all week.
Thomas reportedly “felt fantastic” during Thursday’s practice, and the Saints were originally optimistic he’d take the field on Monday.
The 27-year-old suffered the ankle sprain in the Saints’ 34-23 Week 1 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Thomas limped off the field just before the two-minute warning in the fourth quarter after having his leg rolled into by Latavius Murray.
Because high-ankle sprains can sideline players for three to four weeks, Thomas could miss more than just New Orleans’ Week 2 tilt.
This becomes just the second time in Thomas’ career that he’ll miss a game due to injury. He missed one game during his rookie season in 2016 with an unspecified foot injury.
Losing Thomas, who set an NFL record last season with 149 catches for 1,725 yards and nine touchdowns, could end up being costly for the Saints.
Emmanuel Sanders will be more heavily relied upon moving forward. Although the 33-year-old had just three receptions for 15 yards against the Buccaneers, he’s among the most talented receivers in the NFL. However, he hasn’t had a 1,000-yard receiving season since his 2016 campaign with the Denver Broncos.
The Saints and Raiders haven’t met since 2016 — a game New Orleans lost by one point despite Drew Brees throwing for 423 yards and four touchdowns. With the all-time series tied at 6-6-1, Monday night’s game will be for bragging rights … and a 2-0 record.
Erin Walsh is a Boston sports fan through and through. Although many think Boston sports fans are insufferable, Erin tries to see things from a neutral perspective. Her passion is hockey, and she believes defense wins championships. In addition to covering sports for Yardbarker, she covers Boston sports for NBC Sports Boston. Follow her on Twitter @ewalsh90