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ORCHARD PARK, NY – The New England Patriots will be without starting left tackle Isaiah Wynn for Saturday’s AFC wild-card game against the Buffalo Bills (CBS, 20:15 ET) as the team ruled him out with ankle and hip injuries.
Wynn, the blindside defender of rookie quarterback Mac Jones, had not practiced all week after leaving Sunday’s regular season finale after just nine games. The 2018 first-round pick from Georgia has battled multiple injuries over the course of his NFL career, but this season has been his most consistent in terms of availability.
Wynn started 15 matches and played 82% of the offensive snaps. He was one of 13 Patriots players listed as questionable for the match, a group that included starting safety Kyle Dugger (hand), disruptive rookie-defensive tackle Christian Barmore (right knee), starting-defensive tackle Lawrence Guy ( shoulder) and startline back Dont ‘et Hightower (knee), among others.
In addition, starting cornerback Jalen Mills remains on the reserve / COVID-19 list, as does one of his backups, Shaun Wade.
Bills, on the other hand, did not list any players on their final injury report. As for how the Patriots replace Wynn, the team has several options. Last week, the Patriots 2020 put sixth-round pick Justin Herron (Wake Forest) on left tackle. Herron started six games as a rookie and has started four games this season, where he has played 35% of the offensive snaps in total.
Coach Bill Belichick said Herron, like many of New England’s second-year players, has experienced “great growth” this season. The Patriots also have the option of turning eight-year veteran Trent Brown from right tackle to left tackle and then raising 2020 sixth-round pick Mike Onwenu (Michigan) by right tackle.