The New England Patriots’ first win of the season was a hard-fought one, and a look at the injury list reflects this. Several players got banged up in the 15-10 victory over the New York Jets, including multiple starters.
Let’s assess the damage and find out what it might mean for the Patriots moving forward.
DT Davon Godchaux: The Patriots’ starting defensive tackle remained on the ground following a short run in the second quarter. He walked off under his own power and was initially announced as questionable while receiving attention on the bench. Godchaux did stay around for a while without his helmet on, but was eventually ruled out at the half.
DT Daniel Ekuale: On the very next snap after the Godchaux injury, rotational defensive tackle Daniel Ekuale also went down. The 29-year-old landed awkwardly on his left arm after another run play, and went the same route as his teammate: he jogged off the field on his own, was looked at on the sidelines, initially announced as questionable, and ruled out at intermission.
ED Matthew Judon: Two plays after Ekuale’s injury, the Patriots’ Pro Bowl outside linebacker was slow to get up. Judon suffered some friendly fire from teammate Ja’Whaun Bentley on a fourth down, and was slow to get up. He walked off on his own, missed one snap, and eventually returned without any visible limitations.
G Cole Strange: When the Patriots started their second drive of the third quarter, starting their starting left guard was mysteriously absent. While rookie Atonio Mafi entered the lineup, Cole Strange rode a bike on the sideline. He was announced as questionable to return with a knee ailment but never reentered the contest. He was later spotted in the locker room with ice bags on both of his knees.
S Jabrill Peppers: Peppers walked off the field in the early fourth quarter, following a tackle on tight end Tyler Conklin. He was evaluated by medical personnel, but back on the field after missing three snaps. He did not come out again.
TE Hunter Henry: Henry was slow to get up following a run play in the fourth quarter, and had his left leg checked out on the field. He did manage to walk off under his own power, and returned on the next drive while not showing any signs of discomfort.
What this means for the Patriots
Three of the Patriots’ injuries against the Jets appear to be of the relatively minor variety. Matthew Judon, Jabrill Peppers and Hunter Henry all reentered the contest after their respective departures, and it appears they should be good to go moving forward. Henry was the only player of the three not to meet with the media immediately after the game, but he did do his weekly interview on WEEI on Monday — a positive sign.
As for the others, they are in a wait-and-see state.
Davon Godchaux and Daniel Ekuale both were able to leave the field on their own, but the fact that they did not return is worrisome. The same is true for Cole Strange, who had just made his return from an ankle injury the previous week and is now dealing with a knee injury on top of it.
None of the injuries appeared to be overly dramatic from afar, but time will tell whether or not they will force them to miss any practice or game time. The first injury report of the week, which will be released on Wednesday afternoon, will give us a clearer picture on those three players as well as any other injury situations.
The Patriots will travel to Arlington this week to take on the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET.