In just two days, the New England Patriots and the Jacksonville Jaguars will face off in a highly anticipated rematch of the 2017 AFC Championship Game. As opposed to the last meeting between the two teams, both appear to be in relatively good shape this time around. A look at the final injury report of the week confirms this:
Neither team has declared one of its players out yet: the seven inactives will therefore most likely be announced on Sunday.
Patriots: RB Rex Burkhead (concussion; limited participation), RB Sony Michel (knee; limited participation), OT Marcus Cannon (calf; limited participation), CB Keion Crossen (hamstring; limited participation)
Jaguars: RB Leonard Fournette (hamstring, did not participate)
With the Patriots having just two healthy running backs on their active roster at the moment, getting at least one of Rex Burkhead and Sony Michel back on Sunday would tremendously boost the team’s ground game: James White is no pure between-the-tackles runner, with Kenjon Barner a new addition to the squad. Burkhead and Michel would add a different dimension to New England’s offensive attack.
While the two running backs are likely game day decisions, starting right tackle Marcus Cannon is expected to play. Seeing cornerback Keion Crossen be inactive, on the other hand, would not be a surprise: the rookie was a healthy scratch last week and being limited in practice does not improve his standing on the position depth chart.
The Jaguars, meanwhile, have only one player listed as questionable: running back Leonard Fournette, the best offensive player on Jacksonville’s roster. After sitting out all of this week’s practices, the 23-year old is officially questionable to play on Sunday. Him being out would be a huge blow to the Patriots’ opponent.
Patriots: TE Jacob Hollister (hamstring), SS Nate Ebner (knee)
Jaguars: OC Brandon Linder (knee), TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins (core muscle), OL Jeremy Parnell (knee), LB Telvin Smith (back)
New England removed two players off its injury report: Jacob Hollister could potentially return to the field this week, while Nate Ebner is expected to see plenty of snaps as a core special teamer again.