One day after news broke that New Orleans Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas intended to play through a high ankle sprain he sustained Sunday, the two-time All-Pro is now reportedly expected to be sidelined for several weeks.
Sources told NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero and Ian Rapoport on Tuesday that Thomas’ injury is “worse than originally believed” and that the wide receiver will not be able to play for quite some time.
ESPN cited sources Tuesday saying that Thomas likely won’t play Monday night against the Las Vegas Raiders and that he is “week-to-week.”
Thomas, 27, got hurt Sunday in the Saints’ season-opening 34-23 win over the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers. After leading the NFL in both receptions (single-season-record 149 catches) and receiving yards (1,725) in 2019, Thomas caught only three passes for 17 yards in Week 1. The three receptions tied his career low for a single game, with the 17 yards his second-lowest single-game mark.
The Saints have an extra rest day this week before playing Las Vegas’ home opener on “Monday Night Football” in Week 2.
Thomas, a two-time All-Pro selection and the league’s Offensive Player of the Year last season, has proved extremely durable amid his heavy use in New Orleans. He has played in 64 out of a possible 65 NFL games, missing one game late in his rookie season with a mild knee injury. He has racked up 1,000 or more receiving yards in all four prior seasons, increasing his production every year.
Without Thomas, the Saints may move 33-year-old Emmanuel Sanders outside and adjust the depth chart behind him. Sanders caught a touchdown pass from Drew Brees in his Saints debut on Sunday.