New England Patriots running back Damien Harris and wide receiver Donte Moncrief will not suit up against the Miami Dolphins. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, both players have been ruled out thanks to injuries. The Patriots face off against the Miami Dolphins and desperately need a win to keep their slim playoff hopes alive.
Patriots downgraded RB Damien Harris to out for Sunday’s game vs. Miami.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 19, 2020
New England Patriots Injury Update: Damien Harris, Donte Moncrief Ruled Out
This news comes at a bad time for the Patriots. While Moncrief was nothing more than a depth receiver, Harris was in the midst of a wonderful season. After starting the season on the short-term injured reserve, the 2019 third-round pick proved that he has a home in the NFL. Running behind a solid offensive line, Harris recorded 691 yards and two touchdowns on 137 carries (5.0 yards-per-carry) during his 10 starts. Additionally, the Alabama product added another five receptions for 52 yards on seven targets. According to Pro Football Focus, Harris was the NFL’s second-best running back at the time of his injury.
With Harris sidelined, former first-round pick Sony Michel should see the majority of the early-down work. After a disappointing 2019, the former first-round pick has actually played well when on the field. So far on the season, Michel recorded 230 yards and one touchdown on just 43 carries (5.3 yards-per-carry). While he isn’t as good as Harris, he’s a solid runner that should be able to adequately fill in. While Harris is one of New England’s better players, his absence probably won’t be the difference between a win and a loss.
Moncrief, meanwhile, joined the team midway through the season. Signed after a series of injuries affected the wide receiver depth, the former Pittsburgh Steeler recorded just one reception for 15 yards during his time in New England. With Moncrief sidelined, looked for N’Keal Harry to continue to see an increased workload. New England’s former first-round pick has played well the past two weeks and has a chance for even more playing time.
Embed from Getty Images