The New England Patriots were back on the practice fields – or rather the Gillette Stadium turf – today holding their first semi-open session of the week. And while attendance was solid, two noteworthy players were not spotted during the early portions of practice via multiple media reports: Wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell and cornerback Jonathan Jones were absent.
Mitchell was designated as the second and final returnee off injured reserve three weeks ago. New England has until 4:00 p.m. ET to activate him to the active roster or else his season will end. While the second-year wideout did practice regularly over the past three weeks, his absence today indicates that the Patriots shutting him down will be the course of action.
Another candidate to see his season end is Jones. The slot cornerback and core special teamer suffered what looked like an ankle injury late during Saturday's divisional round playoff game against the Tennessee Titans. While no severity was reported his absence combined with the fact that a new player – plus all practice squad players – were on the practice field today is an indicator that team might have been forced to end his season as well.
The new player, according to ESPN Boston's Mike Reiss, is wide receiver and kick returner Bernard Reedy. The 26-year old spent some time earlier this season on New England's practice squad and active roster but was waived two weeks ago. Now, he is back either as a practice squad option or as the player potentially filling Jones' spot on the 53-man roster.
Also present at practice, although only working out on a stationary bike was offensive tackle LaAdrian Waddle. Like Jones, the starting right tackle suffered an injury on Saturday; a minor knee sprain as was reported earlier during the week. Unlike the cornerback, it seems as if Waddle will be back this season.
The Patriots will release their full injury report later today.