The New England Patriots returned to the practice fields behind Gillette Stadium today for a full-pads session. Quarterback Tom Brady and edge defender Rob Ninkovich, freshly off their respective four-game suspensions, were once again in attendance, while Brandon Bolden, Shea McClellin and Vincent Valentine once again were not.
And another player missed today’s practice according to the Patriots’ injury report: starting right tackle Marcus Cannon.
RB Brandon Bolden (Knee): DNP
OT Marcus Cannon (Calf): DNP
LB Shea McClellin (Concussion): DNP
DT Vincent Valentine (Back): DNP
Cannon is a new addition to the list. After replacing Sebastian Vollmer, who is still on the physically unable to perform list, as the starting right tackle, Cannon has become one of only six players to not miss a snap the first four games of the year. While he practiced yesterday, today’s absence might force that streak to end and thrust one of the backups – either Cameron Fleming or LaAdrian Waddle – into a starting role.
Other than Cannon, there has been one other notable change to the injury report: the addition of wide receiver Julian Edelman.
RB LeGarrette Blount (Hip): LP
QB Jacoby Brissett (Thumb): LP
OT Marcus Cannon (Calf): LP
WR Julian Edelman (Foot): LP
LB Jonathan Freeny (Shoulder): LP
QB Jimmy Garoppolo (Shoulder): LP
TE Rob Gronkowski (Hamstring): LP
LB Dont’a Hightower (Knee): LP
OG Joe Thuney (Shoulder): LP
Edelman was added to the report today with a foot injury. Last season, the Patriots’ number one wide receiver suffered a broken foot and consequently had two surgeries this offseason, so seeing him on the list is certainly not ideal.
Given Edelman’s role and playing style, which is built on short-area quickness, New England needs to watch this one closely – and make sure to give him as much time as he needs to get back to full strength. If this means additional snaps for Danny Amendola – who himself is coming off an injury and plays on a limited snap count – and rookie Malcolm Mitchell, so be it.