2014 DRAFT GUIDE
LB Jerod Mayo joins list of injured Patriots

By HOWARD ULMAN - AP Sports Writer
    2013-10-16 16:54

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) - The ''next man up'' philosophy of the New England Patriots is getting seriously tested.

On defense, star linebacker Jerod Mayo went on season-ending injured reserve Wednesday, joining star tackle Vince Wilfork on the list. On Sunday, their best defensive back, Aqib Talib, could be sidelined after hurting his hip. And just when starting tackle Tommy Kelly returns from a knee injury is unknown.

Then there's the offense.

Wide receiver Danny Amendola and guard Dan Connolly suffered concussions last Sunday. Tight end Rob Gronkowski hasn't played all season.

Gronkowski was the only one of those seven to practice on Wednesday, and he was limited.

But the Patriots lead the AFC East by two games.

''A lot of teams face challenges. It's just really how you deal with them,'' Tom Brady said Wednesday. ''We've lost some guys, dealt with some issues, like every other team. We're handling them OK. We're 5-1. It's a decent start.''

But now four of the Patriots' best players are injured on a defense that has allowed the fourth fewest points in the NFL.

Dane Fletcher, who has started five games since joining the Patriots in 2010, could start at outside linebacker for Mayo on Sunday against the New York Jets (3-3).

''Our defense knows what we have to do,'' Fletcher said. ''It's always next man up. It's kind of that philosophy around here and whoever it may be, it's time for them to fill those shoes.''

Those shoes are pretty big.

Mayo, a two-time Pro Bowl standout, has the most tackles in the NFL since 2010 and calls the defensive signals. Wilfork is a five-time Pro Bowler who has anchored the defensive line since 2005.

They're also leaders, the only two defensive co-captains on the team.

''I think of it as Mayo and Vince are still our captains,'' said safety Devin McCourty, a co-captain the past two seasons.

Mayo was injured in the fourth quarter of Sunday' 30-27 win over the New Orleans Saints when he and safety Steve Gregory tackled Darren Sproles. Mayo lay on the ground then reached for the upper right area of his chest. Mayo's agent, Mitch Frankel, did not respond to a request for comment on a report that Mayo had undergone surgery for a torn chest muscle.

''I just came down and made the hit,'' Gregory said. ''I didn't know what the extent was.''

Wilfork tore his right Achilles tendon Sept. 29 in a 30-23 win over the Atlanta Falcons then underwent surgery.

''When you lose someone like we did with Vince or Jerod, it's tough,'' Brady said, ''but I'd say a lot of teams deal with it, too.

''As much as you hate to lose guys, there's nothing you can do about it and the season doesn't end. You have to keep fighting on, just as they would want us to, just like they did when I went out, just like they did when guys like Rodney (Harrison) went out. We've lost some pretty key, critical guys over the years. Ty Law got hurt at one point.''

Brady had a season-ending knee injury in the 2008 opener and the Patriots went 11-5 with Matt Cassel at quarterback but missed the playoffs.

Harrison missed the last 13 regular-season games in 2005 and both playoff games with a knee injury.

Law played only the first seven games in 2004 before injuring his foot. The Patriots went on to win their third Super Bowl in four years.

''There are a lot of guys who have been injured,'' Brady said. ''You just have to try to fill the spot and other guys have to pick up the slack.''

One of them is outside linebacker Dont'a Hightower, who is expected to call defensive signals in place of Mayo.

''I'm looking forward to it,'' said Hightower, who has started since being drafted in the first round last year. ''If something ever happened, I knew that I would have to step up and do it. I mean I'm not nervous about it. It's something that I've done before, maybe not in the NFL, but I've done it before.''

Now he expects to do it again.

Mayo is done for the year.

''He does a lot for us on the field, off the field,'' coach Bill Belichick said, ''but we're just going to have to move on.''

--

NOTES: The Patriots re-signed defensive tackle Andre Neblett and signed cornerback Travis Howard to the practice squad. ... The 245-pound Fletcher played nose tackle briefly last Sunday. ''It's something new, huh?'' he said. ''But it's fun. Any way I can get in, I'll take it.''

--

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

LaMichael JamesSep 18 11:32p

The Miami Dolphins have expressed interest in free-agent RB LaMichael James (49ers) and it is believed that he has some interest in the team. James is expected to take [ More ]

Knowshon MorenoSep 18 11:32p

Miami Dolphins RB Knowshon Moreno (elbow) has been telling teammates that he hopes to return after the team's Week 5 bye.

Eric DeckerSep 18 11:14p

New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan wants WR Eric Decker (hamstring) to test his injured hamstring in the coming days. The team would like to see him participate in practice Saturday, Sept. 20.

Dez BryantSep 18 11:12p

Dallas Cowboys WR Dez Bryant (shoulder) said his injured shoulder is sore but fully expects to play in Week 3. Bryant said his shoulder will not affect his performance or style of play.

Devin HesterSep 18 10:12p

Atlanta Falcons WR Devin Hester left the game early Week 3 because of cramps and is considered questionable to return.

Harry DouglasSep 18 10:12p

Updating a previous report, Atlanta Falcons WR Harry Douglas (foot) suffered a foot injury in Week 3 and is considered questionable to return.

Josh McCownSep 18 10:12p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers QB Josh McCown (thumb) suffered a right thumb injury in Week 3, and is considered questionable to return.

Harry DouglasSep 18 10:02p

Atlanta Falcons WR Harry Douglas (undisclosed) was helped off the field after suffering an undisclosed injury during the team's Week 3 game.

Robert WoodsSep 18 09:42p

Buffalo Bills WR Robert Woods (ankle) would not be able to play in Week 3 at this point because of his injury, according to head coach Doug Marrone.

Justin SmithSep 18 09:32p

San Francisco 49ers CB Tramaine Brock (toe), OT Anthony Davis (hamstring), C Marcus Martin (knee) and TE Vance McDonald (knee) did not participate in practice Thursday, Sept. 18. RB [ More ]

John AbrahamSep 18 09:02p

Arizona Cardinals LB John Abraham (concussion), TE Rob Housler (hip), LB Alex Okafor (thigh), DE Frostee Rucker (calf) and P Dave Zastudil (groin) did not participate in practice Thursday, [ More ]

Scott WellsSep 18 08:42p

St. Louis Rams CB Trumaine Johnson (knee), C Barrett Jones (back), TE Cory Harkey (knee), CB Brandon McGee (foot) and OG Rodger Saffold (illness) did not participate in practice [ More ]

Shaun HillSep 18 08:22p

St. Louis Rams QB Austin Davis or QB Shaun Hill (thigh) could come down to a game-time decision in Week 3 against the Dallas Cowboys, according to head coach Jeff Fisher.

Zach MillerSep 18 08:22p

Seattle Seahawks LB Bruce Irvin (rib), TE Zach Miller (ankle), LB Mike Morgan (hip) and CB Tharold Simon (knee) did not participate in practice Thursday, Sept. 18. RB Christine [ More ]

Kedric GolstonSep 18 08:12p

Washington Redskins DE Kedric Golston (groin), LB Akeem Jordan (knee) and CB Tracy Porter (hamstring) did not participate in practice Thursday, Sept. 18. OG Kory Lichtensteiger (groin) and PK [ More ]

Adrian PetersonSep 18 07:52p

Minnesota Vikings RB Adrian Peterson's case for child abuse could take six to 18 months to go to trial, according to a source. Peterson is on the Exempt/Commissioner's Permission list and is out indefinitely.

Johnny ManzielSep 18 07:42p

Cleveland Browns QB Johnny Manziel's playing time is decided during the game, according to offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. Shanahan said using Manziel makes the defense have to think more [ More ]

Vontaze BurfictSep 18 07:42p

Cincinnati Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict (concussion) looks unlikely to play in Week 3 against the Tennessee Titans after leaving each of the first two games of the year with [ More ]

Shane VereenSep 18 07:22p

New England Patriots RB Shane Vereen (shoulder) was limited in practice for the second straight day Thursday, Sept. 18.

A. Seferian-JenkinsSep 18 07:12p

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have declared TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins, RB Doug Martin, DL Gerald McCoy, OT Kevin Pamphile, CB Kip Edwards, LB Mason Foster, OG Rishaw Johnson inactive for Week 3.

Jerome SimpsonSep 18 07:02p

The Minnesota Vikings have released WR Jerome Simpson Thursday, Sept. 18.

Roddy WhiteSep 18 07:02p

Atlanta Falcons WR Roddy White (hamstring) is inactive for Week 3 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Thursday, Sept. 18.

Doug MartinSep 18 07:02p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Doug Martin (knee) is officially inactive Thursday, Sept. 18.

C. WhitehurstSep 18 07:02p

Tennessee Titans CB Jason McCourty (groin) and LB Wesley Woodyard (ankle) were limited in practice Thursday, Sept. 18. QB Charlie Whitehurst (finger) participated fully.

Cliff MatthewsSep 18 07:02p

The Atlanta Falcons have declared DL Cliff Matthews, C James Stone, CB Javier Arenas, WR Roddy White, OT Ryan Schraeder, QB Sean Renfree, LB Tyler Starr inactive for Week 3.

Brett KeiselSep 18 06:52p

Pittsburgh Steelers OG Ramon Foster (ankle) did not practice Thursday, Sept. 18. RB Dri Archer (ankle) was limited. WR Martavis Bryant (shoulder), DE Brett Keisel (non-injury related), DT Steve [ More ]

Jonathan GoodwinSep 18 06:42p

New Orleans Saints S Marcus Ball (hamstring), LB David Hawthorne (ankle) and FB Erik Lorig (ankle) did not practice Thursday, Sept. 18. C Jonathan Goodwin (elbow), LB Kyle Knox [ More ]

Xavier RhodesSep 18 06:42p

Minnesota Vikings DT Sharrif Floyd (shoulder) did not practice Thursday, Sept. 18. LB Chad Greenway (hand, rib), OT Phil Loadholt (ankle) and LB Brandon Watts (knee) were limited. LB [ More ]

Alfonzo DennardSep 18 06:42p

New England Patriots DE Michael Buchanan (ankle), LB Jamie Collins (thigh), OG Dan Connolly (knee), CB Alfonzo Dennard (shoulder), S Don Jones (hamstring), DT Sealver Siliga (hand) and C [ More ]

Charles RogersSep 18 06:42p

Oakland Raiders LB Sio Moore (ankle) did not practice Thursday, Sept. 18. CB Chimdi Chekwa (knee), OT Matt McCants (knee), LB Nick Roach (concussion), CB Charles Rogers (knee) and [ More ]

Ryan CladySep 18 06:32p

Denver Broncos LB Lerentee McCray (knee) and LB Danny Trevathan (knee) did not practice Thursday, Sept. 18. OG Ben Garland (ankle) was limited, while DT Marvin Austin (non-injury), S [ More ]

Tony RomoSep 18 06:22p

Dallas Cowboys QB Tony Romo (back) returned to a full practice Thursday, Sept. 18, after skipping practice Wednesday, Sept. 17, with tightness in his back.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group