It was back to work Tuesday for the Patriots, as they began preparing for their week seven showdown with the Jets. Following their upset victory over the Saints this past Sunday, one would expect positive vibes flowing throughout the ranks. Instead potentially devastating and distressing news was divulged. One of the Patriots most important members of the defense is in jeopardy of missing the remainder of the season.
According to Yahoo Sports, linebacker Jerod Mayo underwent surgery on a torn pectoral muscle. It’s not known for certain, but the injury could force Mayo to the sideline for the rest of 2013 campaign.
Some reports indicate that Mayo could return in time for the postseason. Though this all depends on the severity of the tear.
Mayo left in the fourth quarter of Sunday’s game. He was spotted with his arm in a sling leaving Gillette Stadium later that evening.
The loss of Mayo is a damaging blow for many reasons. He’ll surely be difficult to replace given the fact that he is the Patriots defensive leader in addition to being a team captain. Mayo conveys all the defensive play calls to the guys in the huddle, leads the team in tackles and hardly ever comes off the field.
Rookie Jamie Collins looks to be a prime replacement option to Mayo. The Patriots drafted him with the 52nd overall pick for a reason. Clearly Bill Belichick thinks he can contribute and Collins will certainly get an opportunity to showcase himself. Veteran Dane Fletcher could also see some reps at the weak side linebacker position.
As if losing Vince Wilfork wasn’t enough to overcome, this Patriots defensive unit must collectively come together and somehow fill the enormous void that now exists. We’ve seen this team overcome adverse circumstances in the past and they should find a way to do so with the amount of character they have in their locker room.