The Patriots appeared to emerge from Sunday’s win over Buffalo relatively unscathed, but they received some bad injury news Monday that hurts the depth on offense.
Rookie tight end Zach Sudfeld, who didn’t play in the fourth quarter, may not be able to play Thursday night against the Jets after pulling a hamstring Sunday, according to a league source. Sudfeld played only 20 of 91 snaps, and his 6-foot-7-inch height was missed in the red zone in the fourth quarter.
Also, running back Shane Vereen, who led the Patriots with 159 total yards and made several crucial plays to help seal the win, will be out several weeks with a broken bone in his wrist, according to Fox Sports’ Jay Glazer.
With Sudfeld limping and Rob Gronkowski still returning from offseason back surgery, the Patriots currently have just one healthy tight end: Michael Hoomanawanui, who is best used as a blocking tight end.
Complicating matters is that the next game is Thursday night, meaning that if they sign a tight end, it might have to be someone already familiar with the offense. Former tight end Jake Ballard visited the Ravens Monday, but veteran Daniel Fells could be an option.
Vereen played the entire game but felt numbness in his wrist afterward because the bone sat on a nerve, according to the report. With Vereen out, the Patriots may have to turn back to Stevan Ridley, who was benched after fumbling in the second quarter. LeGarrette Blount also rushed seven times for 15 yards, and Leon Washington, signed Saturday, could serve as the third-down back.