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Pair of Patriots starters expected to play against Bengals despite ‘questionable’ tag

Related: Patriots sign Tucker Addington to 53-man roster as Joe Cardona lands on injured reserve

New York Jets v New England Patriots Photo by Billie Weiss/Getty Images

The New England Patriots will not have all hands on deck against the Cincinnati Bengals on Christmas Eve, but two members of their starting lineup should be able to participate in the Week 16 contest. Running back Rhamondre Stevenson and wide receiver Jakobi Meyers are both expected to play, according to a report by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

The tragic figures of last week’s loss in Las Vegas, Stevenson and Meyers both headed into the weekend listed as questionable on the final injury report. Stevenson is dealing with an ankle injury, while Meyers has been limited due to a shoulder issue.

The two being ready to go will be good news for the Patriots. Not only will the team be without wideout DeVante Parker, who remains in concussion protocol, the two have also been its most reliable skill position players on the offensive side of the ball.

Stevenson is ranked first on the team with 243 touches for 1,295 yards from scrimmage and six touchdowns. Meyers, quarterback Mac Jones’ favorite target, has contributed 629 yards on 54 touches and three touchdowns. The belief is that both will be heavily involved yet again versus a Bengals team trying to extend its six-game winning streak.

The other four players on New England’s questionables list — RB Damien Harris (thigh), WR Tyquan Thornton (knee), CB Jonathan Jones (chest), CB Jack Jones (knee) — will likely be game-time decisions. Harris missed three straight games, while Jack Jones sat out last week’s contest versus the Las Vegas Raiders.

Meanwhile, three players have been ruled out by the Patriots. The aforementioned DeVante Parker will be joined on the sidelines by cornerback Jalen Mills (groin) and long snapper Joe Cardona (ankle).

Cardona, who will miss the remainder of the season, has been sent to injured reserve; his spot on the roster went to former practice squad member Tucker Addington.

The Patriots’ game against the Bengals is scheduled for a 1 p.m. ET kickoff at Gillette Stadium.