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Ryan Mathews Injury: Latest on RB's Week 2 Status, Ronnie Brown's Reps and More

SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 18:  Running back Ryan Mathews #24 of the San Diego Chargers carries the ball in the third quarter against the Baltimore Ravens at Qualcomm Stadium on December 18, 2011 in San Diego, California. The Chargers defeated the Ravens 34-14.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jeff Gross/Getty Images
Richard LangfordCorrespondent ISeptember 11, 2012

Dynamic yet fragile San Diego Chargers running back Ryan Mathews did not play in the Chargers' Week 1 win over the Oakland Raiders on Monday night.

However, early indications are he will be ready to roll for Week 2. 

UPDATE: Sunday, Sept. 16, at 12:35 p.m. ET by Alex Kay

As if there were any doubt, you must now remove Mathews from your starting fantasy lineup.

According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the second-year RB will be inactive for Sunday's game against the Tennessee Titans.

Updated: Chargers RB Ryan Mathews will not play today vs. Titans.

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 16, 2012

Despite reports all week that Mathews was likely to be active and participate in this contest, he wasn't deemed healthy enough to suit up and take the field by the coaching and medical staff. 

Look for Ronnie Brown and Curtis Brinkley to get the majority of snaps out of the backfield today.

---END OF UPDATE---


UPDATE: Sunday, Sept. 16, at 10:15 a.m. ET by Alex Kay

Fantasy owners must sit Ryan Mathews right now.

According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the San Diego Chargers RB may not be ready to go on Sunday against the Tennessee Titans. 

Chargers running back Ryan Mathews is unlikely to play today vs. the Titans.

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 16, 2012

This comes as a bit of a shock, as most earlier reports were leaning towards Mathews suiting up and getting his first reps of the season in Week 2.

Ronnie Brown and Curtis Brinkley will likely split carries out of the SD backfield when the Chargers take the field at Qualcomm Stadium on Sunday afternoon. 

Keep it tuned right here for more news, information, opinions, updates and analysis on Mathew's lingering clavicle injury, when he will return and who will get his touches in the San Diego offense.

---END OF UPDATE---

 

UPDATE: Friday, Sept. 14 at 4:10 p.m. ET by Tyler Conway

In updating the statuses of both Antonio Gates and Ryan Mathews, Chargers head coach Norv Turner said his tight end is the far more likely of the two to suit up this week.

Nevertheless, according to Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune, the final decision on both players will not be made until Sunday. 

Norv Turner said Antonio Gates is "probably more ready to play" than Ryan Mathews. Decision will be made Sunday.

— Michael Gehlken (@UTgehlken) Sept. 14, 2012

---------End of Update--------

 

According to Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune, Ryan Mathews practiced for the first time on Thursday since his surgery in August. 

Gehlken tweeted:

Ryan Mathews (clavicle) appears cleared for contact. Practicing in helmet and shoulder pads for first time since Aug. 10 surgery.

— Michael Gehlken (@UTgehlken) Sept. 13, 2012

 

---------End of Update--------

 

UPDATE: Tuesday, Sept. 11 at 4:43 p.m. ET by Tim Keeney

It appears as though Norv Turner has been taking lessons from Bill Belichick.

According to San Diego Union-Tribune beat writer Michael Gehlken, the Chargers head coach was very secretive about when Ryan Mathews would return to the field:

Norv Turner said Ryan Mathews could be cleared for contact tomorrow or a week from tomorrow. Still wait-and-see.

— Michael Gehlken (@UTgehlken) Sept. 11, 2012

Gee, thanks, Norv. Yes, it's probably the right move to not show all your cards this early in the week, but fantasy owners are really going to hate you for this one.

The only thing to do now is to wait for the official practice report on Wednesday. 

------End of Update-------

 

Mathews, who broke his clavicle on his very first carry of the preseason, has his sights set on playing in the Chargers' home opener against the Tennessee Titans next Sunday. 

Union-Tribune San Diego's Michael Gehlken passed along the following quote from Mathews, which came prior to the Chargers' Monday night game:

I probably won't be playing in this game. But the next game, that's what I'm looking for now. I don't know about the team, but me personally, now I'm looking for that (Week 2) game against Tennessee.

Of course, Mathews previously had told XTRA Sports 1360 (via ProFootballTalk's Mike Florio) that there was "no doubt" he'd play in the opener. So take Mathews' injury prognosis with a grain of salt. 

Still, as Florio also points out, the original timetable for Mathews' return was 4-6 weeks, and the next game is five weeks after his injury. So it is reasonable to expect Mathews to be ready to roll next week.

But fantasy owners will definitely want to monitor the situation. And if Mathews isn't going to be a full go, there is no reason to play a San Diego Charger running back in your fantasy league. 

As a team, San Diego rushed for 32 yards on 20 carries. And that miserable number came against a Raiders team that finished 27th in the NFL in  yards per carry last season. 

Ronnie Brown got the start and had five carries for five yards. He did add to his worth by adding 26 yards on five receptions, but that is not the kind of production fantasy owners need. Meanwhile, Curtis Brinkley led them with 10 carries and 12 yards.

It looks like, if Mathews is out, it will be more running-back-by-committee for San Diego. 

When it comes to Chargers running backs, it is Ryan Mathews or no one. 

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