The New England Patriots will be without two key defensive lineman as they try to slow Pittsburgh Steelers pro bowl running bacl Le’Veon Bell on Sunday.
DTs Vincent Valentine (back) and Woodrow Hamilton (shoulder) have been downgraded to out for the Patriots.
— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) October 23, 2016
Valentine, 6-foot-3 and 320 pounds has been hampered by a back injury while the 6-foot-3, 315-pound Woodrow Hamilton has been dealing with a shoulder injury.
The two inactive tackles were the Patriots No. 3 and No. 4 defensive tackles on their depth chart. Clearly these losses will diminish New England’s forces to stack the box against Bell.
Starting defensive tackless Malcom Brown and Alan Branch will likely be asked to play more than the norm vs. Steelers.
Linebacker Jamie Collins, who’s been struggling with a hip injury, did make the trip to Pittsburgh.