The Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots square off Sunday in a matchup that has produced more than its fair share of big fantasy stat lines over the past couple of seasons. One of the questions at the forefront of fantasy owners' minds is whether the Bills will have their top option in the passing game available for the AFC East showdown.
Fortunately, it appears that the answer is yes; although wide receiver Stevie Johnson is listed as questionable after being limited in practice all week, the fifth-year pro told Chris Brown of the Bills' website that he fully expects to face the Patriots this week.
“It just feels a little weak,” said Johnson of his thigh. “Of course it’s not going to be normal because I got banged on it, but it’s all good. It definitely went better than I thought considering the pain I was in just yesterday, but working with the training staff I got it right.”
The 26-year-old Johnson, who has 35 catches for 416 yards and four scores so far this season, suffered a contusion to his thigh in last week's loss to the Houston Texans, but Johnson is fully expected to be a go this week, albeit with a greater appreciation for the thigh pads he'll be wearing for the first time.
This news is no doubt a relief to Johnson's fantasy owners, who will now hope that Johnson can turn back the clock a touch against the Patriots. Although Johnson was a non-factor against New England earlier this season, he had a great deal of success against them in 2011, hauling in 12 passes for 134 yards and two scores in their two meetings a year ago.
Johnson's availability is also good news for fantasy owners considering starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick this week. Fitzpatrick has topped 300 passing yards in three straight contests against the Patriots, and the eighth-year veteran has a much better shot at making it four in a row with his top wideout on the field.