Pressuring the quarterback has not been a strength for the Patriots in recent years, and it now appears that they will be without one their top pass rushers for at least a month.
Outside linebacker Tully Banta-Cain had surgery Sunday to repair an abdominal injury and is expected to miss four to five weeks, ESPN.com reports.
Banta-Cain reportedly sustained the injury late last season and was told surgery was not necessary, but after tweaking the same injury in offseason workouts, it was decided that surgery was the best option.
The nine-year veteran recorded 45 tackles last season and was second on the team in sacks with five — a year after a breakout 10-sack season.
It is likely that Banta-Cain will miss most, if not all, of training camp, but will look to return to the field in time for the Patriots' Sept. 12 opener against the Miami Dolphins.