Alex Carrington (92) pursues New England Patriots running back Shane Vereen (34) during the fourth quarter at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Patriots beat the Bills 23-21. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Shane Vereen out with wrist injury

New England Patriots running back Shane Vereen had himself a breakout game against the Buffalo Bills, and his emergence was a huge reason why the Patriots were able to escape Buffalo with a 23-21 win. Stevan Ridley earned himself a benching after putting a second ball on the ground (it would be returned for a long TD), and Shane Vereen stepped in seamlessly for his friend and fellow third-year running back. Not only did Vereen amass 58 receiving yards on seven catches (ten targets, great efficiency right there), but he also destroyed my expectations of his ground game with 101 rushing yards on 14 carries. He had himself a ridiculously good game with a total of 159 yards from scrimmage, and now we have learned some crushing news about Vereen.

According to Jay Glazer of FOX Sports, the New England Patriots will lose Shane Vereen for a “few weeks”, as he broke a small bone in his wrist yesterday. We talked about how tough Danny Amendola is for excelling after aggravating a groin injury, and he deserves that. But now, we have to give plenty of credit to Vereen for showing some amazing toughness and ability, because he reportedly played through a wrist injury.

Vereen’s injury means that Stevan Ridley will have to get his act together on fumbles, because there is no running back controversy now. Brandon Bolden and LeGarrette Blount are solid, but it’s best to have a running back as talented as Ridley being the feature back and playing to the best of his ability. When he’s putting the ball on the ground, he’s clearly not at his best.

The news regarding Shane Vereen is terrible news, and it comes at a very inopportune time given the way Vereen has played and, well, Ridley has played. Ridley ran the ball well, but it’s tough to get past those fumbles. The Patriots should be able to move right along without Vereen, but his loss will certainly have a noticeable effect.

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Tags: New England Patriots New York Jets Shane Vereen Stevan Ridley

  • Gary Wolff

    The Patriots have A LOT to overcome. Vereen was the new X-factor when it came to match-up nightmares for the defense. A short week is tough enough, and this makes it even tougher. Ridley must step up by playing mistake free ball, and Thomkins and Sudfeld need to stay on their feet and be where Brady expects them to be. The Patriots can get buy the Jets in a low scoring slug-fest if they they play turn-over free ball. I’m assuming Amendola won’t be at full speed if he plays against the Jets, so it’ll be primarily Edelman, Ridley, Sudfeld, and Thompkins as the players who can advance the ball. All three receivers need to play well for any of them to have success, as none of them is good enough on their own to beat double coverage regularly. It’ll be an early gut-check, division game. Would love to see the Patriots pound the ball on the ground against the Jets, open up a few plays for Sudfeld, and have the defense take care of business, and win a 17 – 9 game against the Jets.

    • Joe Soriano

      I think that’s how the Pats-Jets game is going to go, minus the stuff on Sudfeld; I think Edelman and Amendola will carry the passing attack again. It’s going to be another ugly game vs. the Jets, because the Patriots have a lot of stuff going against them right now, as you said. They have injuries and young players still clicking. At this point, it’s all about running, playing D, and getting the W.