Patriots Place Cornerback On IR, Elevate Two From Practice Squad

Jonathan Jones will miss each of New England's next three games

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The New England Patriots will be without their top slot cornerback for at least the next three weeks.

The Patriots on Saturday placed Jonathan Jones on injured reserve, according to the NFL transaction wire.

Jones already had been ruled out for Sunday’s game against the New York Jets with a shoulder injury. He was evaluated for an injury during last week’s overtime loss to the Dallas Cowboys, later returned and then missed all three practices this week.

Losing Jones further taxes an already-thin Patriots cornerback group. Myles Bryant, who was officially promoted from the practice squad this week, likely will see significant playing time in Jones’ absence.

“We’re all fully confident when Myles gets in there,” veteran safety Devin McCourty said this week. “… He’ll help us in so many different ways.”

With Shaun Wade (concussion) also ruled out for Sunday, J.C. Jackson, Jalen Mills, Bryant, Justin Bethel and Joejuan Williams are New England’s only available cornerbacks for this Week 7 matchup at Gillette Stadium. Williams, an underperforming 2019 second-round draft pick, has been a healthy scratch for two of the Patriots’ last three games.

The Patriots worked out three cornerbacks this week — Brian Poole, De’Vante Bausby and D.J. Hayden — but did not sign any.

Per NFL rules, Jones must sit out a minimum of three games. He’ll be eligible to return when the Patriots host the Cleveland Browns in Week 10.

In addition to placing Jones on IR, New England also elevated offensive lineman James Ferentz and defensive tackle Daniel Ekuale from their practice squad for Sunday’s Jets rematch.

This is the first standard elevation for Ekuale, who played in 16 games for the Jacksonville Jaguars and Cleveland Browns over the last two seasons. His presence on the gameday roster is an ominous sign for starting nose tackle Davon Godchaux (finger) who is listed as questionable after not practicing this week. D-linemen Christian Barmore (shoulder) and Deatrich Wise (knee) also are questionable.

Ferentz is up for the third consecutive week, having started each of the last two games at left guard (once as a COVID-19 replacement). Starting right guard Shaq Mason (abdomen) missed both of those games and is listed as questionable for Sunday. If the Patriots want to use Ferentz again beyond this week, they’ll need to sign him to their 53-man roster.

New England opted not to elevate practice squad slot/safety D’Angelo Ross, who has yet to make his NFL debut.

Kickoff on Sunday is set for 1 p.m. ET.

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