New England Patriots running back Rex Burkhead will not be playing in the second preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles.
The New England Patriots are dealing with a number of injuries so far this offseason. One of the positions that have been hit hardest is the running back spot.
First-round pick Sony Michel underwent a procedure on his knee earlier in August. He is expected to be ready for the regular season, which is a positive. While he has a clear timeline for his recovery, the same cannot be said for his backfield mate, Rex Burkhead.
Burkhead came into training camp as the No. 1 running back on the Patriots‘ depth chart. However, he could be losing his grip on that spot because of the injury he is dealing with and his inability to get on the field.
According to Mike Reiss of ESPN, Burkhead will miss tonight’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles. He is expected to be joined on the sidelines by Kenny Britt, Marcus Cannon, Duke Dawson, Trey Flowers, Ryan Lewis, Matt Slater and Michel.
This is only the second preseason game, so there is still time for Burkhead and the rest of the injured players to get back on the field. However, Burkhead’s injury is becoming a bit of a concern.
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The Patriots have not disclosed what the injury is, but Burkhead has been sidelined for a little while now. He was limited in the Wednesday practice prior to Game 1 of the preseason against the Washington Redskins. Burkhead did not play in that game and has not been on the practice field since.
Burkhead dealt with injuries last season, appearing in only 10 games in his first season in New England. He was productive while on the field and was going to be an even bigger part of the Patriots offense this upcoming season.
With Burkhead sidelined, along with Michel, opportunities have arisen for other running backs to take advantage.
Mike Gillislee and Jeremy Hill are battling it out for a roster spot and should receive plenty of chances in the preseason. Undrafted rookie running back Ralph Webb also performed well in his debut and will be able to take advantage of the added chances.
While there has been no indication that the injury is a serious one for Burkhead, this isn’t encouraging that he has been sidelined so long. Hopefully, he is back in the lineup sooner than later to prep for the regular season.