Saints coach Sean Payton said rookie running back Alvin Kamara, who suffered a concussion during New Orleans' 20-17 loss to Atlanta last Thursday night, is expected to play Sunday when the Saints host the Jets.
Kamara, a third-round pick out of Tennessee, has had a ridiculously productive rookie season. He's second in the NFL in yards from scrimmage with 1,017 yards, and he's only the third rookie in NFL history to surpass 600 yards receiving and 600 yards rushing. Kamara's unexpected fantasy value—he went undrafted in the vast majority of leagues—has led to him being the player on the most fantasy teams to make the playoffs (via ESPN).
Before last week's game against Atlanta, which he left in the first quarter, Kamara had put up at least 19 points in standard scoring leagues in five straight games. He is remarkable in the open field but also possesses incredible balance, which has allowed him to average a full seven yards per carry on 87 attempts.
Payton said the expectation is Kamara will play Sunday #Saints— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) December 14, 2017
The extra three days of rest should benefit Kamara's recovery, though every concussion is different, which makes it hard to forecast what kind of workload the Saints will trust him with. Mark Ingram has received the majority of the carries all season, and that'll likely continue again on Sunday (though Ingram himself has been dealing with a toe injury). The Jets have also allowed the 10th fewest points to opposing running backs, but both Kamara and Ingram have been sensational all season, particularly in the Superdome.
Even with some risk that he will be somewhat limited, Kamara owners should start the rook without any hesitation this week.