The injury bug just can’t seem to leave Michael Thomas alone.
On Friday morning, NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reported that the Saints’ superstar wide receiver is expected to miss the start of the 2021 season after undergoing surgery to repair ligaments in his right ankle back in June.
The recommended recovery time for this surgery is typically four months, meaning Thomas could a significant chunk of this coming year.
Sources: #Saints star WR Michael Thomas is expected to miss the start of the 2021 season after undergoing surgery to repair the ligaments in his ankle in June. Based on the timing of the surgery – and recommended 4 months of recovery – Thomas could be on the sideline for weeks.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) July 23, 2021
Through his first four seasons in the NFL, Thomas was one of the most durable wideouts in the league — missing just one game through his first 64. But, that all changed with a slew of injuries throughout the 2020 season.
During the Saints’ opening matchup against the soon-to-be champion Buccaneers in Week 1, Thomas suffered a high-ankle sprain that held him out for the next four contests. Soon after the 27-year-old receiver was suspended one game for fighting with teammate C.J. Gardner-Johnson, he suffered a hamstring injury in practice that sidelined him for another two games. He then sat out for the final three games of the regular season as he prepared his ankle for the Saints’ playoff run
In total, Thomas missed nine games through the 2020 season. This unfortunate drop off came just one year after he earned his second First-Team All-Pro selection behind a league-leading 149 receptions and 1,725 yards.
Without Thomas leading the way to start the season, the Saints will be forced to operate under a receiver-by-committee strategy yet again. Losing secondary WR Emmanuel Sanders and TE Jared Cook this offseason, a young receiver corps of Tre’Quan Smith, Marquez Callaway, Deonte Harris will be forced to step up.
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