The New England Patriots’ offensive line continues to be a work in progress. After being at its healthiest to date last Sunday, it is down another starter this week: left guard Cole Strange will miss the game against the Dallas Cowboys because of a knee injury sustained last week in New York.
As a consequence, the Patriots will again rely heavily on fifth-round rookie Atonio Mafi. The youngster replaced Strange last week after he went down, and also saw prominent action in the two previous games this season. His performance did see its ups and downs — as should be expected with a rookie player — but he is the team’s top option with Strange out and fellow rookie Sidy Sow having missed back-to-back games due to a concussion.
With that said, let’s take a look at New England’s 48-man roster for Week 4.
Patriots game day roster
Quarterback (2): Mac Jones, Bailey Zappe
Running back (3): Rhamondre Stevenson, Ezekiel Elliott, Ty Montgomery II
Wide receiver (5): JuJu Smith-Schuster, Kendrick Bourne, DeVante Parker, Demario Douglas, Matthew Slater
Tight end (3): Hunter Henry, Mike Gesicki, Pharaoh Brown
Offensive tackle (3): Trent Brown, Calvin Anderson, Vederian Lowe
Interior offensive line (5): Atonio Mafi, David Andrews, Michael Onwenu, Sidy Sow, Jake Andrews
Interior defensive line (7): Davon Godchaux, Christian Barmore, Deatrich Wise Jr., Lawrence Guy Sr., Keion White, Sam Roberts, Jeremiah Pharms Jr. (PS)
Defensive edge (3): Matthew Judon, Josh Uche, Anfernee Jennings
Linebacker (5): Ja’Whaun Bentley, Jahlani Tavai, Marte Mapu, Mack Wilson Sr., Chris Board
Cornerback (4): Christian Gonzalez, Myles Bryant, Shaun Wade, Ameer Speed
Safety (5): Kyle Dugger, Adrian Phillips, Jabrill Peppers, Jalen Mills, Brenden Schooler
Specialists (3): K Chad Ryland, P/H Bryce Baringer, LS Joe Cardona
Besides Cole Strange moving to the inactives list and Sidy Sow returning, the Patriots’ game day roster looks almost identical to last week’s. The only other difference is Jeremiah Pharms Jr. being elevated from the practice squad to help replace fellow defensive tackle Daniel Ekuale, who was sent to injured reserve this week.
While the Pharms Jr. elevation brings New England’s game day team to 48, the active roster still stands at only 52. Apparently, the team believes that one of the players on injured reserve or the physically unable to perform list is close to returning.
The average age of the Patriots’ game day roster is 26.7 years.
Game day inactives (5): WR Kayshon Boutte, QB Will Grier, CB Jonathan Jones, G Cole Strange, OT Tyrone Wheatley Jr.
Practice squad (15): DB Joshuah Bledsoe, CB Breon Borders, WR/QB Malik Cunningham, OL James Ferentz, LB Joe Giles-Harris, RB Kevin Harris, CB Azizi Hearn, DT Manny Jones, WR T.J. Luther, LB Calvin Munson, WR Jalen Reagor, OL Kody Russey, TE Matt Sokol, OT Andrew Stueber, P Corliss Waitman
Injured reserve return (4): DT Daniel Ekuale, CB Jack Jones, CB Marcus Jones, OL Riley Reiff, WR Tyquan Thornton
Reserve/PUP (2): S Cody Davis, DE Trey Flowers
The Patriots’ reserve lists, as mentioned above, saw a few changes compared to Week 3. Cole Strange is out, and Daniel Ekuale is now on injured reserve.
In addition, the team made a practice squad move. Rookie cornerback William Hooper was let go due to the addition of free agent defensive lineman Manny Jones.
Kickoff for the Patriots’ Week 4 game against the Cowboys at AT&TT Stadium is scheduled for 4:25 p.m. ET.