According the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport on Tuesday morning, Patriots starting left tackle Isaiah Wynn in week-to-week with turf toe, but he will miss some time. So, the team is signing fourth-year offensive lineman Caleb Benenoch.
#Patriots LT Isaiah Wynn, who has impressed in early action this season, is considered week-to-week with turf toe, I’m told. The injury is not season-ending, though New England will be without him for the time being following tests on Monday.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 17, 2019
Former #Bucs OT Caleb Benenoch is signing with the #Patriots today, source said. He had 9 teams request to work him out, but wanted to play for OL coach Dante Scarnecchia and now gets his wish.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 17, 2019
Benenoch was selected by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the fifth round (148th overall) of the 2016 NFL Draft out of UCLA. He started all 16 games last season at right guard, but was beaten by second-year guard Alex Cappa this summer and released last week.
Benenoch played tackle and guard at UCLA, so he can provide depth at multiple positions in a pinch.
The Patriots offensive line injuries are well-documented. The Isaiah Wynn news is now added to the losses of David Andrews, who is out for all of 2019 with blood clot issues, and Marcus Cannon, who missed week-two with a shoulder injury. Even starting left guard Joe Thuney also appeared to sustain some type of minor injury in the team’s week-two blowout win in Miami. He battled through it and continued to play, eventually ceding some snaps to James Ferentz in the fourth quarter.
Assuming he’s fine to play this week, it’s possible the team could turn to Thuney as their answer at left tackle until Wynn returns. He took many of the first-team reps throughout OTAs and the beginning of training camp, and New England could very well decide he’s an upgrade over veteran Marshall Newhouse, who was signed last week and was thrust into action upon Wynn’s departure. If that is the scenario, then James Ferentz would likely start at left guard, with Jermaine Eluemunor and Benenoch providing depth.
The Patriots take on the winless Jets this weekend in Foxborough.