Sammy Watkins pulled himself out of practice after the first series of 11-on-11 team work citing soreness from his surgically repaired hip.
“I got out there and wanted to compete, but I didn’t feel like I had the burst or speed so why not sit out a day instead of going out there and creating an injury and getting hurt,” said Watkins. “This is only the second week so coach was smart in taking me out today. There’s no pain, there’s just soreness. Certain days I feel good, certain days I have to work through the stiffness.”
It was a tale of two seasons for Watkins, who averaged 4.8 catches for 74 yards and 0.63 TD in the first eight games; he was the #12 fantasy WR going into his team's Week 9 bye. Over the final eight weeks, he averaged 3.4 catches for 49 yards and 0.13 TD, and was the #48 WR from Week 10 to Week 17. The timing of his hip injury (Week 13 vs. CLE) is interesting, because Watkins was already in a slump, posting just 10 catches for 94 yards in the three previous games. It's not a good sign that he's still experiencing soreness in his hip, but he has a full month to get ready for Week 1.