Will the Patriots play more Shane Vereen and Nate Solder? (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
The Patriots have made a few moves on their roster.
1. Patriots have released S Ross Ventrone
2. Patriots have signed OL Donald Thomas
3. Patriots have sent LB Jeff Tarpinian to the injured reserve
4. Patriots have signed WR Tiquan Underwood
5. Patriots have released practice squad DB Josh Victorian
6. Patriots have signed S Ross Ventrone to the practice squad
Yep. Ventrone's still with the team. Anyone surprised? The loss of Tarpinian is rough (head injury), but the rise of Niko Koutouvides is expected to lessen the blow. That means that Jerod Mayo, Gary Guyton, and Tracy White must step up their level of performance as Dane Fletcher and Brandon Spikes are held out of practice due to their injuries.
Thomas makes a comeback as tackle Matt Light rolled his ankle and as Dan Connolly remains flaky at center. Underwood comes back and could provide some special teams depth as a kick off returnman, but also could run a few deep routes.
Here's the following injury report for Sunday's game, based upon Thursday's practice participation:
Did Not Participate:
LB Dane Fletcher, LB Brandon Spikes, LB Jeff Tarpinian (moved to IR)
LB Gary Guyton
The Patriots are hurting badly at linebacker, wide receiver, offensive line, and in the secondary. The move of Ventrone to the practice squad is a good sign for the return of Pat Chung, while the addition of Underwood is not good for new-addition Branch, as well as Price and Slater.
Did Not Participate:
QB Michael Vick
The Eagles look to lose a few key players for Sunday's game. Maclin is struggling with a bad hamstring which, as we know with Taylor Price, can greatly impact a speedster's game and, as a result, will be a game-time decision. DRC is out indefinitely. Vick is out with bad ribs and will be a game-time decision. Jackson has a swollen foot and may not be 100% as a receiver. Asomugha was carted out of practice, but little is known about how he'll be on Sunday. Basically, the Eagles fate will be a game-time decision.
With both teams with key players as "definite maybes" for the game, it will be extremely difficult for the Patriots to plan for the Eagles. Hopefully the Patriots coaching staff will analyze every potential combination- and let's hope that the Eagles ensure their players are as healthy as possible by sitting them out for one more week.