Within a week of placing defensive lineman Ron Brace on season ending Injured Reserve, the New England Patriots have suffered another blow to their defensive line with the news that Mike Wright has joined him.
Wright was put on Injured Reserve on Friday a week before the team will play it's first playoff game.
Wright is the third player out for the season in an area of their team that has had question marks over it all season. Perennial Pro-bowler Vince Wilfork still remains from the starters coming into the season, but the team has has had to replace two starters in Wright and Ty Warren.
The very nature of defensive linemen in a 3-4 defense means that players need to be rotated. The injuries suffered by the Patriots is shortening their rotation at the position and putting more stress on each of the starters.
3-4 defensive linemen need to account for two gaps on the offensive line and essentially take on a double team on almost every play. They are vital run stuffers who allow space to the linebackers who line up behind them. Without solid offensive line play, opposing running-backs should be able to put up big numbers against the Patriots.
Wright's injury is being reported as a head injury. He played in 10 games, starting 5, and recorded a career high 5.5 sacks.
Luck to stay in School.
The consensus number 1 pick in this season's NFL draft has ruled himself out of the race by opting to stay in school.
Andrew Luck, quarterback of Stanford University, has decided to return to school next year in order to earn his architecture degree. Luck has been touted by some members of the media as the best quarterback prospect to come out of college in 25 years.
The 21 year old was the runner up for the 2010 Heisman trophy and has scored 50 touchdowns(45 passing) during his two year tenure at Stanford which led to the MVP award of an emphatic Orange Bowl victory against Virginia Tech.
Luck will return to Stanford for his junior year but will have a new Head coach as mercurial leader Jim Harbaugh has decided to become the head coach of the San Francisco 49ers in the NFL.