Thomas collapsed on a non-contact play after turning to make a block when DeAndre Hopkins caught a screen pass from Deshaun Watson.
Losing Thomas is a significant blow for the Texans, who are already thin at receiver. The four-time Pro Bowler has been one of the most reliable receivers in the league when healthy, and he tallied more than 1,000 receiving yards five straight years from 2012 through 2016.
Although he had only 949 receiving yards in 2017, he was on a Denver Broncos team went 5-11 and finished at the bottom of the AFC West.
In six games for the Texans coming into Week 16, Thomas had 20 receptions for 238 yards and two touchdowns.
Hopkins is a game-changing presence who would be a No. 1 option in almost any offense, while Vyncint Smith, DeAndre Carter and Keke Coutee give the Texans secondary options. Still, Houston traded for Thomas to help make up for the loss of Will Fuller, who tore his ACL in Week 8.
The Texans will feel Thomas' absence as they look to make a Super Bowl run in the playoffs.