The new tradition of football on Thursday night forces fantasy football owners to file lineup decisions earlier than usual. Vernon Davis' cloudy status makes the choice at tight end that much tougher.
After Davis missed Sunday's game with a hamstring injury, owners have carefully monitored his status going into tonight's clash with the St. Louis Rams.
According to CSN Bay Area.com's Matt Maiocco, Davis is still listed as questionable for the San Francisco 49ers. Maiocco said the team will make its decision after pregame warmups.
But NFL Network sideline reporter Alex Flanagan received some more promising news from head coach Jim Harbaugh.
Just spoke to Jim Harbaugh. Asked him about Vernon Davis status. He said, "it looks good, he's felling good."— Alex Flanagan (@Alex_Flanagan) September 26, 2013
Teams must declare their inactive players 90 minutes before kickoff, which gives them until 6:55 p.m. ET. Owners who won't be around right before the game starts should play it safe and sit the inconsistent tight end.
Even if Davis plays, there are no guarantees with him to make your life easy.
Davis caught six passes for 98 yards and two touchdowns in San Francisco's season opener against the Green Bay Packers, only to follow the monster day with three receptions for 20 yards the following Sunday night.
Are you starting Vernon Davis tonight?
Such is the life of owning Vernon Davis.
During the last six games of the 2012 season, Davis totaled six receptions for 61 yards, only to deliver two 100-yard efforts in the NFC Championship Game and Super Bowl.
He's a risk when healthy, so gambling on a banged-up Davis is only recommended for bold gamers.
But Davis' availability should not only concern those who roster the tight end. Colin Kaepernick's stock also takes a hit without the big target, as seen by his 150-yard stinker last week against the Indianapolis Colts. ESPN Ed Werder depicted just how much Kaepernick misses his tight end.
Kaps needs Vernon Davis return. In his career, Kaepernick has completed only half of attempts with Davis off field, including 47.2 pct TY— Ed Werder (@Edwerderespn) September 26, 2013
The Rams have allowed 288 passing yards per game this season, making Kaepernick a tough sit tonight. After two horrid games, it is worth considering if you have a good reserve lined up.
But despite St. Louis' weak pass defense, it has only surrendered 14 catches, 165 yards and a touchdown to opposing tight ends this season. You may regret benching Davis, but there's also a great chance he offers few to no points.
For now, try to find a safer option.