UPDATE (4:55 p.m. ET): The New England Patriots officially have activated center Bryan Stork to their 53-man roster.
In a corresponding move, however, the Patriots placed offensive lineman Ryan Wendell on season-ending injured reserve. Wendell played in just two games this season after missing the beginning of the campaign with an undisclosed illness.
ORIGINAL STORY: It appears the New England Patriots will receive a midseason boost to their offensive line depth.
The Patriots are expected to activate center Bryan Stork from injured reserve/designation for return and place offensive lineman Ryan Wendell on IR in a corresponding move, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter on Saturday. Stork was placed on short-term IR with a concussion before Week 1.
Stork played 15 games as a rookie in 2014, starting 13, including Super Bowl XLIX. He was selected in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft out of Florida State.
Stork could contribute immediately for the Patriots, who have sustained numerous injuries along their offensive line. Left tackle Marcus Cannon (toe) and right guard Tre’ Jackson were ruled out Friday for the Patriots’ Week 9 matchup against the Washington Redskins. Wendell had been listed as doubtful with a knee injury and rookie left guard Shaq Mason, who was inactive in Week 8, is listed as questionable. Starting left tackle Nate Solder was placed on injured reserve last month.
That leaves just five healthy offensive linemen on the Patriots’ roster: Stork, offensive tackles Sebastian Vollmer and Cameron Fleming, guard Josh Kline and center David Andrews. If Mason can’t play Sunday, Stork likely will start at guard. The Florida State product only has played center in the NFL, but he spent time at guard in college. He practiced at guard and center this week.
Tight end Michael Williams could serve as the Patriots’ emergency offensive tackle. He spent two years as an offensive lineman with the Detroit Lions before the Patriots moved him back to tight end, his college position.
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