FOXBORO -- The bye week did the Patriots some good, it seems.
On the health front, the Patriots are looking better than they've looked in some time. When injury reports for New England and Philadelphia were released Wednesday ahead of their Week 11 game, the list for Bill Belichick's club was relatively short.
Absent from the injury report were Julian Edelman (who's dealt with a chest injury for most of the season), Tom Brady (who was on the injury report with a shoulder issue back in Week 9), Shaq Mason (who has dealt with an ankle injury), Rex Burkhead (limited by a foot injury two weeks ago) and Gunner Olszewski (who's had ankle and hamstring injuries of late).
The Patriots had only four players on the injury report Wednesday: Patrick Chung (heel/chest), Danny Shelton (ankle) and Matt LaCosse (knee) were all limited in practice; Nate Ebner (ankle/back) did not participate.
The fact that Edelman is healthy enough to be a full participant is key, of course. Outside of Brady, he may be the most vital cog in the offensive machine here. And because his job asks him to operate in the middle of the field, he's prone not only to getting injured, but to aggravating injuries that don't have a chance to heal. The last time Edelman was off the injury report was Week 3.
The Week 10 bye gave him and others a chance to recover, and they'll face this weekend's challenge a little bit healthier than they were a few weeks ago.
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