There are several concerning injuries to watch closely for ahead of tonight’s huge matchup between the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots, and the biggest injury from a fantasy perspective is the one Julius Thomas is suffering from. Thomas injured his knee in last week’s win over the Kansas City Chiefs after catching three passes for 43 yards and a touchdown, and he has been listed questionable for tonight’s game. If Thomas is active, then he would be in line for a big game, since it doesn’t seem like the Patriots have an answer for covering such a versatile pass-catching TE (Orange Julius has ridiculous speed and athleticism and is already one of the game’s elite pass-catching tight ends).
ESPN Denver’s Cecil Lammey reports that Julius Thomas did indeed make the trip to Foxboro, but he adds that team sources tell him Thomas will be a game-time decision. That’s definitely not good news for fantasy owners, because this is the last game on Sunday. Keep a close eye on every single update that comes in regarding Thomas if you own him in fantasy leagues, because I would be very leery starting him. It would be a lot easier if this were a 1:00 p.m. game, that’s for sure.
Conventional wisdom states that Thomas will play in an important game as a key player since he made the trip, but Lammey’s tweets in reply to his followers paint a concerning picture of Thomas’s chances of playing. Per sources close to Lammey, Thomas’s knee injury “doesn’t sound good”, and the Broncos will need to “test” Thomas’s knee before the game in order to make a final decision on whether or not he is able to play against the Patriots.
Losing Thomas would be a huge blow to fantasy owners and a significant blow for the Broncos, but the Patriots are the ones with more concerning injuries, especially since they come in the secondary against the league’s best passing offense (by far, at that). Safety Steve Gregory and nickel corner Kyle Arrington should play, but Aqib Talib’s status is exactly like Thomas’s and No. 2 corner Alfonzo Dennard is fully expected to miss a second straight game (all four DBs are listed questionable).
All told, Thomas should be able to play (again, he’s an important player playing in an important game), but it pays to do your due diligence and check up on his status.