Brandon Coleman of New Orleans Saints out for Minnesota Vikings game


METAIRIE, La. — The New Orleans Saints have ruled out No. 3 wide receiver Brandon Coleman for Sunday’s divisional-round playoff game at Minnesota with a neck injury.

Coleman has quietly been a major contributor to the Saints’ offense this year as both a pass-catcher and a blocker (the Saints led the NFL in both yards per rush and yards per pass attempt). The 6-foot-6, 225-pounder caught 23 passes for 364 yards and three touchdowns in 16 games played. He has never missed a game because of injury in his three years as part of New Orleans’ active roster.

Coleman’s absence should mean a bigger role for fellow receiver Willie Snead, who has been less productive this season, with eight catches for 92 yards and no touchdowns in 11 games played.

Snead fell behind Coleman in the Saints’ pecking order when he missed the first three games of the season because of a DUI suspension, then missed two more games with a hamstring injury. He hasn’t been able to work his way back into a consistent role since.

Snead caught 141 passes for 1,879 yards and seven touchdowns in a two-year span from 2015 to 2016.

Two other Saints players are listed as questionable because of illness: linebacker Michael Mauti and quarterback Taysom Hill, both of whom play roles on special teams.

Everyone else on the Saints’ injury report is expected to play.

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