Belichick: Patriots would have had a hard time playing on Thanksgiving, due to illnesses

Mike Florio

In New England, the whole store got the flu. Which would have made it challenging to field a team, if the Patriots had gotten the short straw to play on Thanksgiving.

“[W]e’ve had some guys miss,” coach Bill Belichick told reporters on Friday. “So we’ll see how they are today and reevaluate it after today. Would have been hard if we had played yesterday, I’d say that.”

Belichick shrugged at any complications that may arise on Sunday at Houston.

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“It is what it is,” Belichick said. “We have players on the practice squad, we have players on our roster. So, if we need somebody to step in to a spot, then hopefully they’re ready to do it. We’ll see.”

Eight players missed practice on Wednesday due to the illness. Four returned Thursday on a limited basis, and the other four remained absent. But it wasn’t just the players who were ill.

“I mean, look it’s kind of hit everybody a little bit, so we’ll see,” Belichick said. “We’ll start doing injury reports on coaching staff. That will be the next thing.”

Literally the next thing will be the Friday injury report for players, which will reveal who is and isn’t and who may not be able to play. And then comes Saturday and Sunday, when the bug could result in more players developing symptoms strong enough to knock them out for Sunday’s game.

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