Houston Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson is reportedly in the final stage of the NFL league concussion protocol, according to the team's official website. That final stage involves practicing with pads. The receiver's quick progression means the team is optimistic he will be ready to play in Houston's game Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.
"If today's an indicator," head coach Gary Kubiak said Wednesday, "then we should be there tomorrow," saying that he is hopeful Johnson will be able to play.
Johnson was injured Sunday late in the fourth quarter, when Tennessee Titans safety Bernard Pollard hit him while making a catch near the end zone. Johnson left the game after holding on to the catch, and Pollard was fined $42,000 for the hit.
Fantasy impact: Johnson has caught 20 of his 29 targets so far this season for 222 yards, though he has yet to notch a touchdown. The 32-year-old is still easily the Texans' best passing option, though rookie DeAndre Hopkins has impressed so far as well.
When it looked like Johnson might miss Sunday, Hopkins' stock was rising. With this news that the star receiver could very likely play in Week 3, Hopkins' value probably levels off around that of a flex receiver. Johnson, meanwhile, is a must-start, assuming he does take the field.
Concussions are dicey propositions, of course, so owners need to keep a close eye on Johnson's situation. But for now, it looks good for him.
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