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Chris Jones & Dane Fletcher Return to Practice; Marcus Cannon, Tre' Jackson & Jabaal Sheard Absent

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The final two players on the PUP list returned to practice today.

Look, it's Chris Jones playing in the Super Bowl.
Look, it's Chris Jones playing in the Super Bowl.
Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Prior to the start of the season, the New England Patriots placed three players on the physically unable to perform list (PUP): wide receiver Brandon LaFell, defensive tackle Chris Jones and linebacker Dane Fletcher. LaFell was activated off the list three weeks ago and it seems as if Jones and Fletcher will join him soon because, according to Michael Whitmer, both players returned to practice today.

Per the rules, the team now has 21 days to either activate the two defenders to the active 53-man roster or to put them on injured reserve, ending their season. It is likely that the Patriots will wait the entire three weeks to make a move, since both the defensive tackle and linebacker positions are relatively deep at the moment. An injury, however, could change the approach the team takes.

Speaking of injury, offensive linemen Marcus Cannon and Tre' Jackson as well as defensive end Jabaal Sheard were not spotted at today's practice session. Jackson suffered a knee injury in last Thursday's win over the Miami Dolphins and is day-to-day. The injuries to Cannon and Sheard were originally considered minor but both players have not yet returned to practice.