New England Patriots running back Rex Burkhead is out for the rest of their Week 15 matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
While the Patriots were threatening to score in the third quarter, Burkhead limped off the field and went straight to the medical tent. Shortly after, he was ruled out of the game with a knee injury.
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) December 17, 2017
Burkhead has already missed some time this season. He suffered a rib injury Week 2 against the New Orleans Saints. That injury cost him four games.
However, once he returned to the field he made himself a consistent presence in the Patriots’ backfield. Burkhead was on his way to a career season with 252 yards rushing and 4 touchdowns, along with 29 receptions for 249 yards and 3 touchdowns.
This also isn’t the Patriots’ only injury at running back against the Steelers. James White suffered a left leg injury early in the game, and even though he returned to the game, that injury could hamper him in a key moment.
That will leave the Patriots’ running back duties mostly to Dion Lewis for the rest of the game, but if Burkhead’s injury forces him to miss more games they have an inactive player who can step in and produce.
Running back Mike Gillislee was signed in free agency but is inactive for the sixth consecutive week. If his number is called in Week 16, he might rush for 100 yards.