According to ESPN’s Field Yates, the New England Patriots fear that Derek Rivers, their first pick in the 2017 draft, is lost for the year with a knee injury:
From @MikeReiss & I: the Patriots fear their top draft pick DE Derek Rivers has suffered a season-ending knee injury, per league sources.— Field Yates (@FieldYates) August 18, 2017
With the Patriots looking a little thin along the defensive line, Rivers was projected to have a role on the team this season as opposed to taking more of a redshirt year. Should the news be true, New England may have to look elsewhere for additional line depth, particularly with Kony Ealy both injured and struggling.
Injuries are piling up all over the NFL before the season even gets underway; it kind of makes you wonder if the new practice regulations installed with the most recent CBA, initially introduced to increase player safety, is actually doing more harm than good.
Update: According to the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the tests reveal a torn ACL and a sprained LCL for Rivers.
#Patriots 3rd rd pick DE Derek Rivers tore his ACL & sprained his LCL, per the initial MRI. 2nd opinion coming to confirm surgery is needed.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) August 18, 2017
If true, Rivers is done for the year and the career trajectory for a rookie with a torn ACL is not promising.
Stay tuned for more updates on Rivers as they come in.