The Chargers will make a decision Sunday afternoon on the playing statuses of both running back Ryan Mathews and tight end Antonio Gates . If it's any hint, head coach Norv Turner said Friday that Gates is "probably more ready to play" than Mathews.
Mathews practiced in pads for the first time in more than a month on Thursday and was limited on Friday. He hasn't played since the opening snap of the preseason because of a fractured clavicle. Meanwhile, Gates injured a rib during Monday night's game in Oakland. He returned later on, but missed a couple of practice sessions earlier this week. He was also a limited participant in Friday's drills.
Both players are listed as questionable on the injury report.
Michael Gehlken from U-T San Diego guesses that Gates will play while Mathews will sit. The matchup versus Tennessee isn't too tough, but another problem here is that this is an afternoon game, and we probably won't know if Mathews is active until about 3 p.m. Eastern time.
Get Gates into your lineup, but play it safe with Mathews. He, like Kenny Brit in the same game, has the ability to put up a great fantasy line despite a limited number of snaps. Unlike Britt, we have no strong signal that Mathews will play. Don't get left with a zero in your box score.