The New England Patriots were without four starters on their offensive line entering Sunday's Week 5 road game against the Houston Texans.
Normally, that would be a huge problem for a team, but the "next man up" mentality was alive and well for New England as its offensive lined surpassed expectations in helping the Patriots escape NRG Stadium with a 25-22 win.
The new-look offensive line allowed only one sack and four hits on rookie quarterback Mac Jones. The run game also had a bounce-back performance with 126 yards (4.2 per carry) and a touchdown.
Before the game, team captain and starting center David Andrews, who was the only healthy starter from Week 1 active Sunday, gave a passionate pre-game speech to his fellow offensive linemen.
Check out Andrews' message in the video below:
It's hard not to get fired up after listening to that.
The Patriots could get a few of the missing offensive line back in time for Sunday afternoon's Week 6 matchup against the Dallas Cowboys at Gillette Stadium. Left tackle Isaiah Wynn and left guard Michael Onwenu did not play versus the Texans because they were on the COVID-19 list. If they are cleared to play, we should see them back in the lineup this weekend.