Last Friday, New England Patriots star linebacker Jamie Collins was first spotted on the team's injury report. He missed a practice session due to an undisclosed illness. Due to this illness, Collins also missed last Sunday's game against Washington and yesterday's practice session.
He was also absent for today's media availability portion in the team's locker room. Now we know why. According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, Collins is battling a virus:
#Patriots LB Jamie Collins, not spotted by reporters today, is battling a virus. He’s very weak, hasn’t been able to eat. Status in doubt
Of course, Collins needs to get 100% healthy before returning to the Patriots' facilities - and even then he probably needs to get back to work rather slowly. There is no need in rushing him back because the Patriots need Collins fully healthy come playoff time.
In Collins' absence, fellow linebackers Dont'a Hightower and Jonathan Freeny need to hold down the fort. Hopefully, they don't have to do it for long and Collins is able to return quickly. [UPDATE]: According to his agent, he should be better "in a few days" (via ESPN's Josina Anderson):
Spoke to agent Bus Cook re: #Pats LB Jamie Collins. Said from what he understands Collins is ill w/ a virus, but shd be well in a few days.
Get well soon, Jamie!
Collins is one of four Patriots players not spotted at today's practice session. The others are offensive linemen Marcus Cannon (toe), Sebastian Vollmer (concussion) and Tre' Jackson (knee).