Ryan Mathews misses practice on Thursday, expected to start for Chargers, fantasy owners

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODA

The Chargers' feature back sat out Thursday's practice with an ankle injury. We break down the fantasy implications.

San Diego Chargers running back Ryan Mathews did not practice on Thursday, according to U-T San Diego's Michael Gehlken.

Mathews has not practiced this week after being seen in a walking boot following his 119-yard performance versus the Oakland Raiders in Week 16. Despite that, head coach Mike McCoy said he expects Mathews to play on Sunday in a game that would eliminate the Chargers from playoff contention if they lose.

Fantasy Spin: There's no reason for the Chargers to not play with all hands on deck in an elimination game, and Mathews' could cash in given the circumstances of the Chargers'  opponent. The Kansas City Chiefs are locked in their seeding, and head coach Andy Reid has hinted about resting his starters. If that's the case, Mathews could have a huge game versus a team that has little to play for.

For the season, Mathews has been a huge surprise to fantasy owners after burning them in the past. The team's feature back has seven games of over 100 yards from scrimmage and has posted career highs with 261 carries, 1,111 rushing yards and seven rushing touchdowns. Mathews is a high-upside RB2 for Week 17 should he get the nod.

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