An Injury-Riddled Day of OTAs

USA TODAY Sports

Three more Patriots go down during today's OTA session.

As if there weren't enough hobbled Patriots as it is.

As the team continues its Organized Team Activities without the services of Rob Gronkowski, Aaron Hernandez, Devin McCourty, Julian Edelman, Nick McDonald, and Brandon Bolden, it would appear that three more Patriots will be added to the injury report after today. Jake Ballard, Stevan Ridley, and Alfonzo Dennard were all hurt today's practice and were unable to finish the session.

Ridley was seen grabbing his right hamstring during 7-on-7 drills and would not return to action. He spent the remainder of the practice on the sidelines stretching and working with the trainers. All signs point to a pulled muscle, which isn't anything to be too concerned over. Ballard's injury was a little more frightening, as he hobbled off the field favoring his newly repaired left leg; however, trainers were seen paying attention to his ankle as opposed to his knee, so it would appear that his injury isn't incredibly serious either - most likely a twist or sprain. Both Ballard and Ridley remained on the sidelines watching the offense run plays.

The biggest injury of the day was Dennard, who was seen on the sidelines favoring his left shoulder before being carted back to the stadium for further evaluation. The injury was serious enough that Bill Belichick came over to check on it personally before Dennard caught his ride back to the training room.

Obviously, we aren't going to know anything about the extent of Dennard's injury, well...ever, but I'd like to think that it isn't a huge cause for concern. I'm very aware that the term "carted off the field," is often followed by some variation of the phrase "season-ending," but that is usually in referral to a lower body injury of some kind. Furthermore, odds are that Dennard was carted off the field as a matter of convenience more than anything else; it's a bit of a hike from the practice field to the trainer's room, so why jog back there when you don't have to? Plus, if history is any indicator, the bulk of shoulder injuries aren't season-ending; worst case scenario would be that Dennard requires some kind of surgery that keeps him out of the beginning of the season - but there's no sense in jumping to that conclusion just yet.

Dennard's injury will be the main one to monitor, but hopefully everyone who is currently off the field for various reasons will be up and ready to go by the time September rolls around.

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