The New England Patriots suffered some high-profile injuries during their training camp practice on Sunday. Among the players unable to finish the session were starting center David Andrews, long snapper Joe Cardona, and tight end Hunter Henry.
Henry’s shoulder injury is not considered serious but could still cost him some time. Andrews and Cardona, meanwhile, also appear to have avoided major injury.
Andrews, who left practice and slammed his hand to the turf in frustration, appeared to have hurt his right snapping hand. He later had X-rays but they came back negative, as first reported by Pro Football Focus’ Doug Kyed. While the Patriots will likely play it safe with the 29-year-old, it seems as if he will be back on the field sooner rather than later.
During Andrews’ absence, the Patriots turned to veteran lineman James Ferentz to take over the center role. The team also has Ted Karras on its roster as the top interior backup, but he has yet to be cleared for full practice participation after having missed the six sessions leading into Sunday himself.
As for Cardona, he could “potentially miss a little time,” per Jeff Howe of The Athletic. The veteran long snapper, who has played in all 108 possible regular season and playoff games since arriving in New England in 2015, left Sunday’s practice because of an undisclosed ailment and was replaced by two players: tight end Jonnu Smith took over his role on punts, with defensive lineman Deatrich Wise Jr. filling in on field goal attempts.
While they have two emergency options on their roster, the Patriots will likely bring another long snapper in if Cardona is forced to miss time due to his mystery injury (NESN’s Zack Cox speculated on Sunday that it might be a hand issue). One option might be Wes Farnsworth, who spent a month in New England earlier this offseason.
The Patriots will return to the practice fields two more times before their preseason opener against the Washington Football Team on Thursday.