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Week 17 Patriots vs Jets inactives: New England thin at linebacker despite Ja’Whaun Bentley’s return

Related: Placing Damien Harris on injured reserve among six Patriots transactions ahead of season finale

Patriots vs 49ers Staff Photo By Matt Stone/ MediaNews Group/Boston Herald

In not even 90 minutes, the New England Patriots will play their 16th and final game of the 2020 season, trying to finish the year with a 7-9 record: Bill Belichick’s club will square off against a New York Jets team that is heading into the contest with an 2-13 record. Before getting ahead of ourselves, however, let’s take a look at the players on both sides who have been declared inactive and will therefore not participate in today’s contest:

Patriots inactives

C David Andrews

LB Terez Hall

QB Brian Hoyer

LB Anfernee Jennings

G Shaq Mason

CB D’Angelo Ross

CB Dee Virgin

New England entered the weekend with three players already ruled out: offensive linemen David Andrews (calf) and Shaq Mason (calf) as well as running back Damien Harris (ankle). With Harris moving to injured reserve since then, however, the team had to deactivate another player in his place. Ultimately, five more men joined Andrews and Mason on the inactives list.

Of those five, only two were listed on the injury reported heading into the weekend: Terez Hall (ankle) and Anfernee Jennings (shoulder). Even with the return of fellow off-the-ball linebacker Ja’Whaun Bentley to the lineup, the Patriots are therefore left thin at the position. Josh Uche is a candidate to offer some depth alongside Bentley, as is edge linebacker Chase Winovich.

The other players listed as questionable on Friday’s final injury report of the week, meanwhile, are good to go: wide receivers Donte Moncrief (thigh) and Matthew Slater (knee), offensive tackles Jermaine Eluemunor (ankle) and Justin Herron (ankle), defensive tackles Lawrence Guy (shoulder), Byron Cowart (back) and Adam Butler (shoulder), linebacker Shilique Calhoun (knee), defensive backs J.C. Jackson (knee), Justin Bethel (neck) and Devin McCourty (shoulder), and long snapper Joe Cardona (ankle) and kicker Nick Folk (back).

Jets inactives

QB James Morgan

CB Blessuan Austin

TE Travis Ross

OL James Murray

DL Trevon Coley

WR Lawrence Cager

Only one of the Jets’ inactives was listed on the injury report on Friday: cornerback Blessuan Austin will miss the game because of an illness. The other player are healthy scratches.