ESPN.com's Jeff Legwold has reported that Denver Broncos wide receiver Wes Welker (concussion) has yet to practice this week and has not been cleared to play in the team's week 16 game vs. the Houston Texans. Welker suffered the head injury in the team's week 14 win vs. the Tennessee Titans and missed their week 15 game against the San Diego Chargers, a 27-20 loss.
The concussion is Welker's second of the season. He didn't miss any time due to the first one, suffered vs. Kansas City in week 11. He wasn't as lucky this time around. Before he'll be allowed to practice, Welker must first be declared "symptom-free" by team doctors and an independent physician approved by the league and by the player's association. Once he's cleared those hurdles, he'll then be allowed to return to practice on a limited basis.
Welker ranks third on the team in receptions (73), receiving yards (778), and touchdowns (10).
This injury has been a huge blow to fantasy teams who have enjoyed the on-field bond between Welker and QB Peyton Manning this year. As a result of Manning's historic season, Welker has done something he never did with Tom Brady in New England, catching double-digit touchdowns. Prior to his latest concussion, Welker was on pace to put up a stat line of 90 receptions, 960 yds, and 12 touchdowns... solid WR2 numbers in fantasy.
As it stands, it's looking less and less likely that Welker will be available to fantasy owners in week 16. This is obviously bad news for Welker owners, but also potentially takes away one of Peyton Mannning's favorite targets for a second straight week. WR Andre Caldwell , who did catch two touchdowns with Welker out in week 15, could be a sneaky reach as a flex play or in weekly salary cap leagues (where his price tag should be cheap, cheap, cheap), should Welker miss a second straight game.