FOXBORO, Mass. — Jamie Collins’ status for Sunday’s New England Patriots-Minnesota Vikings game is in question after he missed practice Friday with a thigh injury.
The Patriots already were shallow at linebacker before Collins’ injury, and if he misses Sunday’s game, it could force Rob Ninkovich to play linebacker rather than edge rusher. It also could force Dominique Easley into a starting role at defensive end.
It’s rare for a Patriots player to suit up in a game after missing a Friday practice.
Practice squad defensive lineman Kelcy Quarles was absent from practice for the second straight day. Quarles was spotted in the Patriots’ locker room on Thursday.
The Patriots ran a 3-4 defensive alignment with Collins, Jerod Mayo, Dont’a Hightower and Rob Ninkovich at linebacker. They had linebacker Chris White on the bench, and outside linebacker Darius Fleming was inactive.
Defensive end Chandler Jones could stand up in the Patriots’ 3-4, playing outside linebacker and forcing Hightower into the middle.