Initial tests showed Patriots’ RB Rex Burkhead did not tear his ACL, per league source. He could miss a little time, but knee injury initially not believed to be of the major variety.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 18, 2017
Schefter notes that the injury is “not believed to be of the major variety,” but that the running back “could miss a little time.”
I would not be surprised if the Patriots decided to hold Burkhead out until the postseason, which could open the door for Mike Gillislee to finally get back on the field next week against his former team, the Buffalo Bills. Look for Dion Lewis to see a large increase in time on the field and for Gillislee to possibly get his first couple targets of the year.
UPDATE [12/18, 9:08 am ET]: According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, Burkhead suffered a sprained knee and the team is hoping to get him back for the postseason:
Heading into the MRI, the #Patriots believe RB Rex Burkhead suffered a sprained knee, along with a bruise from a player landing on it. No torn ACL. The early hope is for a return for the playoffs.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 18, 2017
New England's win yesterday puts the team on the path to earning a first-round playoff bye which in turn would give Burkhead an additional week of recovery.
UPDATE [12/19, 8:44 am ET]: Per Ian Rapoport, Burkhead was indeed diagnosed with a sprained knee after further examinations: