Patriots

Patriots place OLs Isaiah Wynn, Michael Onwenu on COVID list

The Patriots could be without their starting left tackle and left guard this week as Wynn and Onwenu head to the Reserve/COVID list.

Isaiah Wynn Patriots
Patriots tackle Isaiah Wynn tries to block New Orleans Saints defensive end Carl Granderson in Week 3. (Winslow Townson/AP Images for Panini)

The Patriots’ offensive line situation may have just gotten a lot worse.

ESPN’s Field Yates amd Mike Reiss reported Tuesday the team has placed starting left tackle Isaiah Wynn and left guard Michael Onwenu on the Reserve/COVID list, putting their status for this week’s game in jeopardy.

It is unknown whether either or both players have tested positive for COVID-19, who their close contacts may have been or whether either player is vaccinated.

The vaccination question is relevant to both players’ possible availability to play against the Houston Texans this week.

Vaccinated individuals who test positive for COVID and are asymptomatic “can return to duty after two negative tests 24 hours apart,” according to NFL protocols. As such, there is a chance, though maybe an unlikely one, that the two affected Patriots could play Sunday if they are vaccinated and asymptomatic.

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On the other hand, unvaccinated players who test positive for COVID-19 must continue to isolate for 10 days regardless of whether they are symptomatic, which would then put a player at risk of missing two games.

The COVID situation comes as the Patriots offensive line continue to be without starting right tackle Trent Brown (calf) and have struggled to protect Mac Jones from taking hits.

Wynn, in particular, has surrendered 13 quarterback pressures this year, according to Pro Football Focus, which ties him for the team lead with backup right tackle Justin Herron.

Onwenu, meanwhile, had a hard time containing star interior defensive lineman Vita Vea against the Buccaneers last Sunday, committing multiple holding penalties. He was essentially benched in the second half in favor of interior line super-sub Ted Karras.

If neither Wynn nor Onwenu can play against Houston, Karras is the logical choice to start at left guard while Yodny Cajuste might have to start at left tackle during his first NFL game.

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