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Week 7 Patriots vs Bears: Sony Michel downgraded to OUT after suffering serious-looking knee injury

New England appears to have taken a major hit.

NFL: Indianapolis Colts at New England Patriots Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots started well into their week seven game against the Chicago Bears, but it took a quick turn for the worse late in the first quarter. First, Cordarrelle Patterson lost a fumble on a kickoff return that was turned into a Chicago touchdown and 10-7 deficit for New England. Then, on the first play of the second quarter, it was rookie running back Sony Michel to cough up the football.

The fumble, however, is the least of New England’s concerns at the moment: Michel, who has taken on a vital role in the team’s offensive attack appeared to be in serious pain after the giveaway. The Patriots’ first-round draft pick got his foot twisted while being tackled and remained on the ground after letting go of the football. As New England later announced, he had suffered a knee injury.

Michel, who was already dealing with a knee issue during training camp, had to be helped off the field and later was taken to the locker room on a cart. His loss – for how long it will ultimately be – is a big one for New England not just because of his productivity the last three weeks: the Patriots have only two other running backs on their roster in James White and Kenjon Barner.

UPDATE: Michel is OUT for the game, per the team.