Their trip to Pittsburgh was a successful one for the New England Patriots. The team of head coach Bill Belichick celebrated a victory over the Steelers to improve their record to 1-1, showing some encouraging strides in all three phases along the way.
However, not all went well for the team. For example, several starters got banged up during the 17-14 win. While it remains to be seen just how serious those issues are, let’s take a look at the players who were either announced as injured or caught our eye after re-watching the game.
CB Jonathan Jones: The Patriots’ starting cornerback was limited with an apparent quad injury on Sunday. Not only was he treated on the sidelines at one point, he also appeared to miss some snaps as a result. In total, Jones was on the field for 45 of 59 defensive snaps.
DT Davon Godchaux: Godchaux went into the locker room in the second quarter and was later announced as questionable to return due to a back injury. However, the 27-year-old eventually returned in Quarter 3 and ended the game with 26 snaps.
S Kyle Dugger: Dugger was not on the field for the Steelers’ final drive of the first half, having left for the locker room with a sleeve on his right knee. He was eventually announced as questionable to return to the contest in the early third period, but was not spotted again for the rest of the contest. The Patriots never officially ruled him out, though.
LB Ja’Whaun Bentley: Already entering the game dealing with a toe issue, Bentley also suffered a back injury during the game. He too was announced as questionable to return in the third period, but as opposed to Dugger did make a comeback: the linebacker was back on the field in the early fourth period.
WR Jakobi Meyers: While he was not listed on this week’s final injury report, Meyers had been dealing with a knee ailment ahead of the season opener. Against Pittsburgh, he exited late after seemingly aggravating the issue; Meyers stood on the sidelines during New England’s final drive and did not re-enter the contest.
RB Damien Harris: The final play before the Patriots’ series of kneel-downs saw Harris ice the game with a 5-yard gain on 3rd-and-3. However, he also appeared to hyperextend his knee. Luckily, he walked off under his own power and remained on the sidelines without needing any additional medical assistance. Harris was made available for the post-game press conferences and confirmed that he would be alright.
What this means for the Patriots
All six of the players listed here are starter-level members of the Patriots’ current roster. Their respective statuses heading into the upcoming game with the Baltimore Ravens will therefore definitely be worth keeping a close eye on.
That said, it appears as if only Dugger’s injury might be a potentially concerning one. While the other five players either returned to the game (Jones, Godchaux, Bentley) or mentioned afterwards that they would be fine (Meyers, Harris), the third-year safety was a no-show throughout the second half.
The Patriots will release their first practice report of Week 3 on Wednesday afternoon, and it should give us more clarity.