Once again this season, the New England Patriots have resigned WR Austin Collie. The team cut Collie for the second time almost a week ago, but now bring back the receiver in time for the playoffs. In Collie’s seven games with the Pats, he has six catches for 63 yards. It is interesting to note that all of Collie’s catches have been for first downs. With the news of Collie’s return comes some speculation and, perhaps, worry about which current Patriots player may be sent to IR.
The same four players were missing from practice today as Wednesday’s workout: Logan Mankins (ankle), Josh Boyce (ankle), Alfonzo Dennard (knee/shoulder), and Aaron Dobson (foot). Mankins briefly left Sunday’s game with the ankle injury but was able to return to the game, so he will likely be ready to play next week. Alfonzo Dennard didn’t play last week in order to get healthy, so it is unlikely he heads to IR.
The two players worth keeping an eye on are Boyce and Dobson. The return of Collie would make the most sense if one of these two were sidelined for the rest of the year. Boyce didn’t play in the last two games of the season, so perhaps he is one that will be out for the year. The loss of Dobson would be a tough blow to the Patriots, who finally seem to be clicking on offense and could use Dobson’s speed and separation ability against the tough defenses in the playoffs. It is also possible that no one heads to IR, and the Patriots are simply giving them time to rest during the bye week, but if that were the case then they likely would not have signed Collie.