Take that, NFL. The New England Patriots have listed quarterback Tom Brady as "probable" for Sunday's game against the Miami Dolphins. Brady was listed as limited in during Thursday's practice with a right shoulder injury for the first time this season, and now has a 75 percent chance of playing on Sunday.
But we all know there's a 100 percent that he plays this weekend. As Mike Reiss suggested in an article posted on ESPNBoston.com, coach Bill Belichick might've wanted to send a subtle tweak to the NFL after they were victimized by a first-ever penalty call last week.
Fortunately for the quarterback, he could be getting wide receiver Danny Amendola back on Sunday, though he was only listed as questionable. After missing three weeks with a groin injury, Amendola sustained a concussion in Week 6. The first-year Patriots wide receiver spoke with reporters today and said he is "feeling good and ready to go." However, doctors still must clear him before he can play this week.
For the first time this season, tight end Rob Gronkowski practiced in full on Friday. After being labeled as limited throughout the entire season, this is a sign that things are full-speed ahead for Gronk. I expect him to play at least 90 percent of the snaps on Sunday, though it is not out of the question for him to play every down.
On the defensive side of the ball, cornerback Aqib Talib is listed as questionable with a hip injury. The star corner was missed in last week's game, and the Pats could be without him again this week. Talib was limited in practice all week and still doesn't look like he's at full speed. Despite this being a divisional game, I think it might be best for him to sit to assure his health for the latter half of the season.
Defensive tackle Tommy Kelly will miss his third week in a row after sustaining a knee injury in Week 5. He was seen limping around the facilities with a sleeve on his knee. The Patriots have been struggling up the middle, not only because of the season-ending injuries to Vince Wilfork and Jerod Mayo, but also because of Kelly's absence.
The Miami Dolphins have eight players listed as probable, including quarterback Ryan Tannehill (right shoulder), wide receiver Brandon Gibson (shoulder), linebacker Dannell Ellerbe (shoulder), and defensive end Cameron Wake (knee). All of them are expected to play.
Here is this week's full injury report for the New England Patriots:
|DT Tommy Kelly||Knee||Out||Out||Out||OUT|
|RB Leon Washington||Ankle||Out||Out||Out||OUT|
|WR Danny Amendola||Concussion/Groin||Limited||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|RB Brandon Bolden||Knee||Limited||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|OL Marcus Cannon||Shoulder||Limited||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|WR Julian Edelman||Thigh||Limited||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|TE Michael Hoomanawanui||Knee||Limited||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|CB Aqib Talib||Hip||Limited||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|DB Tavon Wilson||Hamstring||Limited||Limited||Limited||Questionable|
|CB Kyle Arrington||Groin||Full||Full||Full||Probable|
|QB Tom Brady||Right Shoulder||---||Limited||Full||Probable|
|TE Rob Gronkowski||Back/Forearm||Limited||Limited||Full||Probable|
|CB Devin McCourty||Shoulder||Full||Full||Full||Probable|
|LB Rob Ninkovich||Groin||Full||Full||Full||Probable|
|WR Matthew Slater||Wrist||Limited||Limited||Limited||Probable|