Report: Patriots sending Jakob Johnson to IR with shoulder injury

Report: Patriots sending Jakob Johnson to IR with shoulder injury

The New England Patriots began the season with two fullbacks. Now they have zero.

The Patriots are expected to place Jakob Johnson on injured reserve with a shoulder injury he suffered Thursday night against the New York Giants, The Boston Globe's Jim McBride reported Friday.

New England promoted Johnson off the practice squad on Sept. 21 after sending starting fullback James Develin to injured reserve. Johnson only saw one offensive touch (a five-yard reception in Week 5) over the next four games, but drew praise from head coach Bill Belichick for his strong work ethic.

The 24-year-old is a native of Stuttgart, Germany, and came to the Patriots via the NFL's International Pathway Program. He's the first player from that program to appear in an NFL game.

New England also was without wide receiver Phillip Dorsett on Thursday night and saw Josh Gordon go down with a knee injury in its 35-14 win.

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Patriots have dominated this category since turn of the century

Patriots have dominated this category since turn of the century

The New England Patriots have been an unstoppable force over the course of the past two decades. The team has won six Super Bowls, 17 division titles, and hasn't logged a losing season this century.

One of the reasons for their success? They have been insanely good in one-possession games.

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According to Boston Sports Info (@BostonSportsInf), the Patriots have the best winning percentage in one-score games since the turn of the century. They are one of just two teams that have won greater than 60 percent of those contests. Here's a look at the numbers:

While several teams have more wins than the Patriots in these contests, it's still remarkable that the team has won two-thirds of their one-score games in the Tom Brady/Bill Belichick era. It takes great decision-making on the parts of players and coaches to maintain such a strong record.

With Brady no longer on the Patriots, It looks like we're going to figure out just how much he has mattered to the Patriots' ability to win close games. Jarrett Stidham and Brian Hoyer are the two quarterback options on the roster after Cody Kessler was released on Thursday, so Belichick will have his work cut out for him with either option.

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Meanwhile, Brady's impact on the Buccaneers may be notable depending on how much they improve in this area. The Bucs have the third-worst winning percentage of the century in one-possession games, coming in at 40.2 percent. They have the second-most losses overall with 98.

Last season, the Bucs were 3-6 in nine one-score games with Jameis Winston at the helm. If Brady can help to improve upon that record by making fewer late-game mistakes than the turnover-prone Winston did, then the Bucs may have a chance to progress well as an overall team.

Either way, we'll soon see how Brady's presence impacts the Bucs and if the Patriots can continue their winning ways in close contests.

Tom Brady ready to 'let loose' on Howard Stern Show next Wednesday

Tom Brady ready to 'let loose' on Howard Stern Show next Wednesday

Tom Brady hasn't exactly been the most electric interview over the years. Perhaps his fresh start as the quarterback of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will change that.

Throughout his 20-year tenure with the New England Patriots, Brady approached interviews with team-first, politically correct responses. There isn't necessarily anything wrong with that, but having Bill Belichick as his head coach probably played a factor in Brady's lack of personality shown through his media appearances.

With his Patriots career in the rear-view mirror, Brady is set to be interviewed on a show that doesn't really allow for boring answers. That would be SiriusXM's "The Howard Stern Show."

In his tweet promoting next week's interview with the longtime controversial radio host, Brady even went as far as to say he's ready to "let loose."

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Brady and Stern undoubtedly make for an odd combination, so it'll be interesting to see how the usually buttoned-up 42-year-old QB adjusts to Stern's brash style.

We'll find out April 8.