Aaron Hernandez suffered a nasty looking right ankle injury in the first quarter, when Julian Edelman was tackled into the back of his leg following a short gain. Hernandez immediately reached for the ankle, rolling on the turf. He required assistance to leave the field, then went to the locker room for maintenance. The team is calling his return "questionable," but I'm calling it extremely unlikely. This injury has a multi-week feel, as you have to worry about a high sprain.
We'll obviously update the story as more info is made available.
The Hernandez situation overshadows Sunday's other big fantasy story in Foxboro, the mysterious shelving of Wes Welker. Edelman was playing ahead of Welker in two-receiver sets early in the game. Tom Brady's early first quarter interception came on a batted pass, intended for No. 11, not No. 83.
Following the Hernandez injury, Welker began picking up more snaps.
If there's any sort of injury affecting Welker, the Pats are never gonna tell us about it. I have a tough time wrapping my head around the idea that New England would de-emphasize one of their primary receiving options for any other reason (as we discussed last Monday), including the ongoing contract issues. But we shall see. He eventually got his name in the box score, with a nifty 25-yard grab.
I'm trying to maintain my confidence in Wes, but the Pats don't make it easy.