New England Patriots running back Dion Lewis returned to the locker room today, sparking interest in his potential return to the field.
It’s not going to happen.
BREAKING: #Patriots RB Dion Lewis needs 2d knee surgery, league source confirms. Timetable for his return is uncertain. Tore ACL last Nov. 8— Jim McBride (@globejimmcbride) August 21, 2016
Lewis needs to have a second knee surgery after tearing his ACL in week 9 of last season. This is horrible news, for both Lewis’ recovery and for the Patriots offense.
More information is required before we can determine the length of his absence. If he needs another ACL surgery, he’s probably out for the season. If he needs his knee cleaned up, perhaps he could return by midseason. We’ll have to wait and see.
Lewis is currently on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list and will likely remain on the reserves until the middle of the season.
There are a couple immediate repercussions for the Patriots.
1. The Patriots now have an extra running back spot for the roster. If Lewis is on the PUP list, then the Patriots will have to add another running back to join LeGarrette Blount, Brandon Bolden, and James White. Tyler Gaffney is the current leader, although Donald Brown could still make a late push.
2. James White is going to see an expanded role. Lewis played two-thirds of the offensive snaps when he was healthy last year, which is a lot of time to fill. White is one of the best receiving backs in the league and he’s going to be quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo’s best friend over the first four weeks of the season. The question is whether or not White can fully take on Lewis’ role in the offense as a runner.
We’ll keep you posted if we find out more on Lewis.
12:32pm update: CSNNE’s Tom Curran had the following to add...
“Dion Lewis had a complication after his ACL surgery and needs to have a second procedure, according to a source. The nature of the procedure isn't specifically known, but it doesn't involve the ACL or any other ligaments.”
Update: ProJo’s Mark Daniels reports that Lewis had a setback in July that was unrelated to his return to minicamp.