Patriots Injury Update: Ryan Allen, Aaron Dobson Return to Practice

Jared Wickerham

The Patriots received some good news this morning, with both punter Ryan Allen and receiver Aaron Dobson returning to the practice field.

The New England Patriots received some very positive news on the practice field Wednesday morning, as both punter Ryan Allen and wide receiver Aaron Dobson returned to practice. Quarterback Tom Brady and long snapper Danny Aiken were not spotted.

Allen injured his shoulder in the second quarter of the Patriots divisional playoff tilt against the Colts, after being tackled at the goal line following a bad snap (although the injury may have actually come on the ensuing free kick). Kicker Stephen Gostkowski punted the rest of the way in his place. If Allen is indeed good to go Sunday, that’s a big plus for the Patriots. Allen has been solid as a rookie, and having him back also means that the Patriots don’t need to scramble for a new punter and holder.

Having Aaron Dobson back in the fold is even bigger news for the Patriots. The Broncos are without their best cornerback, Chris Harris after he tore his ACL over the weekend. Their other top cornerback, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, is likely to get Julian Edelman as his main assignment. Dobson likely takes over for Kenbrell Thompkins on the outside. Thompkins has essentially been a ghost the last two weeks, but Dobson provides a real deep threat that Denver will have to account for.

When on the field, Champ Bailey has primarily been a slot cornerback for the Broncos this year, but could be forced back to the outside with Harris out. Having Bailey, who’s battled a foot injury all season, guard the tall, athletic Dobson could be a mismatch for the Patriots. If the Broncos put DRC on Dobson, than you’ve got Bailey on the uber-quick Edelman. In three receiver sets, the Broncos will be forced to play either Tony Carter or Kayvon Webster on Danny Amendola. To put it simply: having Aaron Dobson back would give the Patriots a lot of potential ways to create mismatches with their receivers.

Of course, just because Dobson and Allen returned to practice doesn’t mean they will play. But today’s news is an encouraging sign, to say the least.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Pats Pulpit

You must be a member of Pats Pulpit to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Pats Pulpit. You should read them.

Join Pats Pulpit

You must be a member of Pats Pulpit to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Pats Pulpit. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker