Danny Amendola might be a younger version of Wes Welker when he signed with the Patriots during the offseason, but he certainly isn't a healthier alternative. Not right now anyway.
After gutting it out and playing for the entire Week One game against the Bills with a groin injury, sources tell NFL.com's Ian Rapoport that Amendola is "almost certain" to miss Thursday night's game against the Jets. Since we don't know the severity of the pull, there could be an outside chance that Amendola misses more than just Week Two. By playing through the pain Sunday, he might have made the injury worse by aggravating it
Amendola, as most of you know, has had a history of injuries. While he wasn't considered injury prone early in his career, he had missed 20 games from 2011-2012. The most well known injury occurred in 2012 when Amendola's clavicle popped in instead of out and came millimeters from puncturing his trachea and aorta, which could have killed him.
When healthy, the guy is a PPR machine. He caught 85 passes in a full 16-game season back in 2010 and caught 63 last season before missing the rest of the year for reasons above. It made sense for the Patriots to bring him in on a five-year contract for $28.5 million. Welker was getting more expensive. But past analysis has told me that sometimes spending less money can come with a price. Could this be the beginning of an injury-riddled year for Amendola?
If I was an Amendola owner, I wouldn't worry......yet. We will know more about the injury and it's severity sometime this week. If Amendola misses just one game, it will be a sign of relief. But missing one game doesn't help the Patriots offense against a surprisingly effective Jets offense. TE Zach Sudfeld suffered a hamstring injury, putting his Week Two status in jeopardy. Team star Shane Vereen, who took over running back duties after a Stevan Ridley fumble, broke his wrist and is expected to miss a few weeks. I have Julian Edelman in my Week Two Waiver Wire piece and also wrote up a more in-depth analysis as to why he will mean a lot more to Tom Brady than some thought during the offseason. Edelman's fantasy football value is at an all-time high this week.
As for Amendola, all owners can do is sit, wait and hope this injury isn't a sign of things to come for 2013.