FOXBORO, Mass. — Running back Stevan Ridley, linebacker Brandon Spikes and tackle Sebastian Vollmer were absent from the Patriots' practice Wednesday inside the Dana-Farber Field House.
The Patriots were in full pads for the first time since Nov. 10, and players and coaches were in an upbeat mood at the start of the session when the media was in attendance. Teams are permitted to practice in full pads three times in the final six weeks of the regular season, so the Patriots have two full-pads sessions remaining in the bank.
Ridley's absence was not injury related, according to the Patriots' practice report. This was Ridley's first absence since the first practice of the regular season. He tweeted Monday that he was flying to Louisiana and would fly back Thursday.
Spikes hasn't practiced since injuring his knee in Week 9 against the Giants. Vollmer (foot, back) did not practice last week after injuring his foot against the Eagles.
Wide receiver Wes Welker (knee) and cornerback Kyle Arrington (foot) were back on the injury report after being taken off last week. They were among 12 players who were limited in practice, also including safety Patrick Chung (foot), center Dan Connolly (groin), wide receiver Julian Edelman (back), linebacker Dane Fletcher (thumb), safety James Ihedigbo (shoulder), cornerback Devin McCourty (shoulder), wide receiver Matthew Slater (shoulder), running back Shane Vereen (hamstring), offensive lineman Ryan Wendell (calf) and running back Danny Woodhead (abdomen).
The Patriots were in full pads for the ninth time during the regular season.