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Saints WR Michael Thomas to miss start of season after ankle surgery

The New Orleans Saints will hobble into 2021 with their No. 1 receiver sidelined.

Orleans Saints receiver Michael Thomas (13) during NFC Practice at ESPN Wide World of Sports.  Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Saints star wide receiver Michael Thomas will miss the start of the 2021 NFL season after undergoing surgery to repair the ligaments in his ankle in June, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport. Thomas was plagued with injuries last season and now will start 2021 on a similar note.

There no official timeline yet on Thomas’ return to the field, but Rapoport noted that recovery could be around four months and that Thomas could be sidelined until October. And with soon to be Hall of Fame quarterback Drew Brees retired, the Saints will start 2021 looking quite a bit differently than 2020.

Thomas notably broke the record for most receptions in a season with 149 back in 2019, but 2020 proved to be a letdown with injuries, pushing him to play in just seven games and catch 40 passes. The Saints didn’t have much depth behind Thomas and it showed last year.

New Orleans didn’t add much, if any depth this offseason, as Tre’Quan Smith, Deonte Harris, Marquez Callaway, Juwan Johnson, and Lil’Jordan Humphrey will all be in the mix to be the Top 3 starting wide receivers for Week 1. They will undoubtedly add some receivers for training camp, but finding a starting caliber player at this point is unlikely.