The Minnesota Vikings host Washington on Thursday Night Football in Week 8, and they might get an unexpected return for the game. Wide receiver Adam Thielen suffered a hamstring injury on a diving touchdown in the first quarter of Week 7 and did not return to the game. The injury was not viewed as serious, but the short week meant he was not expected to play on Thursday.
There is a chance that changes. Head coach Mike Zimmer told the media on Tuesday that Thielen has a chance to play, according to NFL Network reporter Tom Pelissero. He said Thielen is improving fast, and Thielen himself said he feels great and is “extremely hopeful” he can play on Thursday.
Fantasy football analysis, Vikings WR Adam Thielen
If Thielen is active on Thursday, starting him becomes a difficult question. The problem is that I don’t think it would surprise anybody if he ended up in more of a decoy role. Considering how bad Washington is, this should turn into a blowout fairly quickly. If that happens, there is no reason to risk aggravating a hamstring injury.
But if the team declares him active, you have to decide how you want to roll the dice. I’d lean sitting him, but really we all should just hope the Vikings deactivate him and don’t leave us guessing.
If Thielen does not play or is limited, tight end Kyle Rudolph is the guy who could benefit most. He emerged the past two weeks, and could be a go-to guy for Cousins against Washington.