For now, let’s assume the Patriots and Bills play this Sunday as scheduled. Much can happen between now and then, and the NFL on Wednesday left open the door for the game to be postponed to allow Buffalo to focus on Damar Hamlin, but kickoff currently is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET at Highmark Stadium.
The game would be the biggest of New England’s season, and it also could see the Patriots healthier than they’ve been in a long time.
Just six players showed up on New England’s Wednesday injury report, including non-participants Jonnu Smith and Marcus Jones. Both players are dealing with concussions that forced them to miss the Patriots’ Week 17 home win over the Miami Dolphins.
The other four players were limited participants, including receiver DeVante Parker, who practiced for the first time since suffering a concussion during the Week 14 win over the Cardinals in Arizona. Jakobi Meyers also practiced through a shoulder injury that he suffered during the Dolphins game, after which the fourth-year pro indicated he planned to play against the Bills.
Running back Rhamondre Stevenson and rookie receiver Tyquan Thornton both were removed from the report after dealing with injuries over the last two weeks. Rookie cornerback Jack Jones also was removed due to being placed on injured reserve.
Here’s the full injury report for Wednesday:
DID NOT PARTICIPATE
TE Jonnu Smith — Concussion
CB Marcus Jones — Concussion
WR DeVante Parker — Concussion
CB Jalen Mills — Groin
WR Jakobi Meyers — Shoulder
CB Jonathan Jones — Chest
The Patriots can clinch a postseason spot with a victory over the Bills. New England still could enter the playoffs with a loss, but it would need help from other teams.
Again, we still don’t know for certain whether the game will be played Sunday. But the NFL on Wednesday said that no changes had been made to the Week 18 schedule, and both the Patriots and Bills behaved Wednesday as if they intended to play.
You can follow NESN.com for additional updates on Patriots-Bills as they become available.