Super Bowl LI injury report: Patriots list seven players as questionable

Super Bowl LI injury report: Patriots list seven players as questionable

HOUSTON -- The Patriots made no additions to their injury report on Friday as they prepared for Super Bowl LI. All seven players who were listed as limited participants on Thursday were also limited on Friday, and all seven have been officially deemed questionable for Sunday's matchup with the Falcons. 

Martellus Bennett (knee), Alan Branch (toe), Nate Ebner (concussion), Dont'a Hightower (shoulder), Chris Hogan (thigh), Malcolm Mitchell (knee) and Vincent Valentine (back) are all questionable for the game. Ebner, Bill Belichick said on Thursday, is expected to be good to go for the game despite having practiced in a red non-contact jersey this week. 

It will be interesting to see how well prepared the Patriots are to deploy Branch and Valentine, both of whom landed on the injury report with ailments this week. The two defensive tackles make up a three-man rotation on the interior that includes Malcom Brown, with Branch and Brown serving as the primary options inside on early downs. 

Valentine popped up on the injury report Thursday with a back issue. A back injury forced him to miss three weeks earlier in the season, and if he's forced to miss any time this weekend, the Patriots may have to make a roster move to add a defensive tackle. They have two -- Darius Kilgo and Woodrow Hamilton -- on their practice squad. 

Here's Friday's practice participation/injury report for Super Bowl LI:


TE Martellus Bennett (knee)
DT Alan Branch (toe)
DB Nate Ebner (concussion)
LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder)
WR Chris Hogan (thigh)
WR Malcolm Mitchell (knee)
DT Vincent Valentine (back)


DE Dwight Freeney (calf)
WR Julio Jones (toe)
C Alex Mack (fibula)

Eric Ebron signs two-year deal with Colts

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Eric Ebron signs two-year deal with Colts

Former Lions tight end Eric Ebron is signing a two-year deal worth $15 million with the Colts, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Ebron was rumored to be a potential target for the Patriots, especially after new Pats running back Jeremy Hill tried recruiting him to the team.

The 24-year-old had 53 receptions for 574 yards and four touchdowns a season ago with Detroit. 


Patriots release Shea McClellin

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Patriots release Shea McClellin

Shea McClellin will be blocking kicks for somebody else next season. 

The Patriots announced Monday they've released the veteran linebacker, ending his tenure with the team after two seasons.  ESPN's Field Yates broke the news.

The Pats signed McClellin to a three-year deal prior to the 2016 season, but that was the only season in which he played for the team. McClellin missed all of last season due to injury. Prior to coming to New England, McClellin played four seasons with the Bears, who chose him 19th overall in 2012. 

McClellin's biggest contribution with the Pats came when he blocked a Justin Tucker kick in Week 14 of the 2016 season against the Ravens.