As the Patriots reconvened this week after their COVID-19-forced bye, everyone’s present and accounted for. Except Deatrich Wise.
The Patriots’ fourth-year defensive end didn’t practice Thursday for non-injury related reasons. He also wouldn’t have practiced Wednesday if the Patriots held a practice, according to the team’s hypothetical participation report they have to file five days before a game. He is present -- he was spotted at the facility on Friday morning -- but hasn't been on the field.
Wise’s practice absence isn’t insignificant. He’s been the Patriots second-best pass rusher this year behind Chase Winovich. Wise was the only absence for the Patriots on Thursday.
A non-injury related absence could mean just about anything. It’s often family-related -- welcoming a child or bereavement. Of course, any absence in 2020 causes COVID antennae to raise. However, if Wise were being held out because of anything related to the virus that would be divulged.
Wise has been a bit of a tease in his first three years with the Patriots. He's got great length and power and has flashed big-play potential but consistency has been an issue. This year, though, he's been a problem for offensive linemen after adding weight but seemingly maintaining the same unique explosion for a guy that's 6-foot-5.
We’ll keep an eye on the participation report for Friday and his status for Sunday against Denver. The Patriots practice at 1 p.m. on Friday.