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Antonio Brown tweaked ankle, game-day decision for Week 17

We break down the news that Antonio Brown tweaked his ankle injury in practice

Antonio Brown #81 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers reacts after a play during the third quarter in the game against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium on December 26, 2021 in Charlotte, North Carolina. Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Friday PM update: Brown tweaked his ankle earlier this week and wasn’t able to practice Thursday or Friday. Assistant head coach Harold Goodwin says that they’ll see how he feels on Sunday before making a decision on his status for the game, per Greg Auman.

Friday update: After missing Thursday’s practice with an ankle injury, Brown was once again not at the start of practice on Friday, per Rick Stroud. We’ll learn more later, but this isn’t a good sign for his ability to play this week.

Thursday update: Brown didn’t practice on Thursday after getting a limited practice on Wednesday. This could easily be a maintenance day, but is worth keeping an eye out for.

On the first day of practice in Week 17, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers reported that Antonio Brown was limited with an ankle injury. Brown didn’t seem too limited in the team’s Week 16 matchup against the Carolina Panthers as he totaled 10 receptions for 101 yards. He had 15 targets in total so the Bucs definitely want to see him able to take the field in Week 17.

With Chris Godwin and Mike Evans both sidelined for Tampa Bay, Brown was able to step up as Tom Brady’s favorite target. His appearance on the initial injury report is concerning, but not worrisome yet. It is definitely a situation to monitor as the week progresses.

Fantasy football implications

Brown and the Buccaneers take on the New York Jets in Week 17 and they are going to rely on Brown once again. The Jets are giving up the seventh-fewest fantasy points per game to opposing wide receivers. The volume that Brown gets with the other big-name receivers out though makes Brown a must-start as a WR2. If Brown is unable to go, it wouldn’t automatically elevate another receiver on the roster, but would probably see an increased usage for running back Ronald Jones and tight end Rob Gronkowski. If Brown is active, START him.